Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Turkey, Turkey Trot & the Hottest Party Night of the Year:

   The Thanksgiving holiday has always been one of my favorites. The three major components of this feeling has to do with the letter F --Family, food, & football. But beside the obvious attractions of the holiday, there is also a TT & an M involved in the mix.  The annual Troy Turkey Trot begins on the holiday morning, downtown. Runners from all over the country take part in one of the USA's oldest road races, held right here in the Home of Uncle Sam. There is also a strong musical component added to the mix. For some reason, Thanksgiving Eve has become the biggest party night of the year.
   Here in Troy, there will be plenty to do that night. The Ruck, located on 3rd St. will feature one of the best local bands around, Super 400. Members,  Kenny Hohman, Lori Friday, & Joe Daley have traveled worldwide, waving the Troy banner proudly.   They are throwback band of great musicians, who always put on a rockin show.  Another HUGE show that night will take place at Revolution Hall. Emerald City, maybe one of the greatest rock bands to ever grace the local stages, come to the fabled music mecca, for their final show of 2011. The groups original members, Gary Brooks, Gary Tash, Rick Rourke, Ed Powers, Dave Costa, Gary Sagendorf, & Joe Mele, reunited after 30 years apart, and have not looked back. They have played every major Troy event this season (Troy Pig Out, Uncle Sam Jam, & Rockin on the River), and have gained a legion of new fans along the way. Their 4 part harmonies are unmatched by any local group, and their song list is like a classic rock jukebox. With three master guitarist leading the way, this will prove to be the best show of 2011. Sly Fox & the Hustlers will open, featuring the regional hit, SUNY Girl, from their latest CD --The Low-Life. Tickets are available at the door, which opens at 7 pm.
   There will be music all over the city for you to choose from. It doesn't matter where you go, just come &, ENJOY TROY -- as I'll be doing!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Break out the band and STOP the PRESSES --  Bill Fisher is coming back to the 'Burgh. Only this time --with none of that yum yum pizza of his, now he's going hot dog!
Ladies & gentleman, please join Mr. Fisher on Thursday, November 17th, at 12 p.m. for the ribbon cutting, red carpet event, grand opening of, Willie's Dog House. Featuring Hembold's Hot Dogs, with Fishers, secret recipe sauce.
If you've never enjoyed a meal at any of Fishers establishments, do yourself a favor and stop in at his new/old location at the corner of 122nd St. & 5th Ave.
And as an extra added bonus, ask Bill to see you a Sinatra tune while waiting for your dogs. He used to advertise as Fishers -- Pizza With Attitude, now he's become
Willie's Dog House --Dog's with Attitude, that don't bite your wallet.
Welcome back Fisher --Ye was missed!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Chow-dah Time in Troy:

It's time once again for the Troy Chowder Festival. This annual event was started five years ago as a joint venture between the city, and the Downtown Business Collaborative. Elizabeth Young, Chairperson of the BID, has done an amazing job in the coordination of this city signature event over the years. The combination of brisk Fall weather, chowder & music brings thousands of well behaved lovers of the clam to our city. Chowder Fest has become a, 'Destination Event', for the multitude of people who have come to know Troy as the event capital of the Great Northeast. I've added a photo from a couple of years ago to show the huge crowd that Chowder Fest attracts on a year to year basis. The video I shot last year, and shows the music, & gives a visual of what this event is all about -- food & fun!
This year's musical lineup is diverse, to say the least. We'll be kicking off the entertainment at 11 a.m. with the Blue Grass magic of the Mike McMann Bluegrass Explosion, with the Nelly's. The amazing, Tichy Boys take the stage at  12:45. Father & son combo, John Tichy (formally of Commander Cody & the Lost Planet Airmen) & one of the area's finest guitarist, son, Graham Tichy. The Rich North Tribute to the Stars of Country will come on board at 2:30 p.m. Rich North, in my opinion is probably one of the finest singers I've ever heard in this area. He was a  finalist on the old, 'Star Search', television show. He will perform tunes by some of the greatest stars in country music history with his band, comprised of some of the finest musicians in the Northeast. So join us this Saturday, October 15, beginning at 10 a.m., to sample all the varieties of chowder, enjoy the great music, and most of all, to ENJOY TROY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! video

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Hey-We're Having a Parade In The Burgh-And You're All Invited:'

   Break out the cheap, overpriced plastic blow up toy's -- it's time for the 36th annual Uncle Sam Day Parade. John Rustin is putting in his wooden parade teeth for the big day, and  Shirley Kelly & Gus Demars are waiting for their yearly convertible ride down 5th Ave like 2 kids on Christmas morning. The point I'm trying to make is that the entire committee works very hard to plan this yearly celebration, and all feel a weight lifted off their shoulders, once the parade is underway. Committee members include, Bill & Alta Reynolds - who also nurture the Ms. Uncle Sam Pageant like doting parents, four term former Lansingburgh Councilman Mark Wojcik, Nurse Darlene Simpson, octogenarians Shirley Kelly & Gus Demars (the last remaining Spanish American War Veteran),  Jim Gordon, Mike Golden, Nora & Susan Dwyer, Carol Coonrad, Kelly Hardy, Randy Demars, Jeff Zovistoski, and John Rustin Sr - who recently celebrated his 96th birthday and had a facelift.
  As you may have heard, the Uncle Sam Festival at Knickerbacker Park WILL NOT BE TAKING PLACE THIS YEAR. Last year's terrible weather caused the committee to take a HUGE financial bath, and a decision to take a year off, to financially recoup and fundraise was made. There will be however, an Old Daley Chicken BBQ at Germania Hall from 2-5 p.m. So take a ride there to grab a dinner, and come on over to Powers Park for some entertainment, provided by the dynamic horn band, Vehicle. They have reunited for a one time performance to benefit the Lansingburgh Boy's & Girl's Club in this first time fundraising effort. We are asking that those attending bring at least one non perishable food item, which will be turned over to the food pantry at the B& G Club. A pretty cheap price for the quality of music you'll get to enjoy free, on what's being forecast as being a beautiful Fall day in the high 60's .If you'd like to see some video of them, visit my YouTube page at either, Troy NY Events, or vc894. - there's some killer video of them at both Powers Park  & Downtown Troy events. We'll have ice cream, festival foods, along with fried dough available at the park. Sorry folks -- no beer truck at this event. A  50/50 raffle will be held to benefit the club throughout the day.       
   So join us for the celebration of Uncle Sam Wilson's birthday -- come on down and Enjoy Troy -- and check out John Rustin's wooden parade teeth!

Hey-We're Having a Parade In The Burgh-And You're All Invited:'

   Break out the cheap, overpriced plastic blow up toy's -- it's time for the 36th annual Uncle Sam Day Parade. John Rustin is putting in his wooden parade teeth for the big day, and  Shirley Kelly & Gus Demars are waiting for their yearly convertible ride down 5th Ave like 2 kids on Christmas morning. The point I'm trying to make is that the entire committee works very hard to plan this yearly celebration, and all feel a weight lifted off their shoulders, once the parade is underway. Committee members include, Bill & Alta Reynolds - who also nurture the Ms. Uncle Sam Pageant like doting parents, four term former Lansingburgh Councilman Mark Wojcik, Nurse Darlene Simpson, octogenarians Shirley Kelly & Gus Demars (the last remaining Spanish American War Veteran),  Jim Gordon, Mike Golden, Nora & Susan Dwyer, Carol Coonrad, Kelly Hardy, Randy Demars, Jeff Zovistoski, and John Rustin Sr - who recently celebrated his 96th birthday and had a facelift.
  As you may have heard, thE Uncle Sam Festival at Knickerbacker Park WILL NOT BE TAKING PLACE THIS YEAR. Last year's terrible weather caused the committee to take a HUGE financial bath, and a decision to take a year off, to financially recoup and fundraise was made. There will be however, an Old Daley Chicken BBQ at Germania Hall from 2-5 p.m. So take a ride there to grab a dinner, and come on over to Powers Park for some entertainment, provided by the dynamic horn band, Vehicle. They have reunited for a one time performance to benefit the Lansingburgh Boy's & Girl's Club in this first time fundraising effort. We are asking that those attending bring at least one non perishable food item, which will be turned over to the food pantry at the B& G Club. A pretty cheap price for the quality of music you'll get to enjoy free, on what's being forecast as being a beautiful Fall day in the high 60's .If you'd like to see some video of them, visit my YouTube page at either, Troy NY Events, or vc894. - there's some killer video of them at both Powers Park  & Downtown Troy events. We'll have ice cream, festival foods, along with fried dough available at the park. Sorry folks -- no beer truck at this event. A  50/50 raffle will be held to benefit the club throughout the day.       
   So join us for the celebration of Uncle Sam Wilson's birthday -- come on down and Enjoy Troy -- and check out John Rustin's wooden parade teeth!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Another Great Weekend Coming Up in Troy:

   Get your party on this weekend in Troy, cause as usual, there's going to be more to do here than in any other Capital District community. Everything kicks off at the Italian Community Center, in Troy's 'Little Italy', on Friday night with their annual Italian Festival. The event runs thru Sunday afternoon complete with music, games, and music. Headlining the entertainment schedule will be Mr. Entertainment, Al Bruno, along with the fantastic, Good Times Band. The food has always been the highlight of this festival in my opinion, going back to the days when the feast was held in Washington Park. Headlining the food menu will be my favorite, Mr. Meatball!
   It's also 'Uncle Sam Weekend' up here in the 'Burgh. The weekend celebration kicks off on Saturday morning with a graveside ceremony at Uncle Sam Wilson's resting spot in Oakwood Ave Cemetery at 10 a.m.  -- hosted by the Veteran's of Lansingburgh. Immediately following will be the annual, Uncle Sam Brunch, held at the Veteran's of Lansingburgh on 1st Ave. Tickets are available at the door. The 36th annual parade kicks off at 125th & 5th Ave. on Sunday, September 18, at 12:45 p.m. Marching bands, politicians, clowns (no comparisons with the politicians please) along with midget cars, and always the highlight of my parade day, watching Shirley Kelly & John Rustin do the 'parade wave' from their convertible. I'll be the parade announcer once again, trying hard not to get people upset with me at what comes out of my mouth sometimes. Right after the parade, the party moves to two spots. First, at Powers Park we will be doing a fundraising effort with the Lansingburgh Boys & Girls Club, featuring a performance by one of the most dynamic horn bands ever to grace the local stages, Vehicle. The group is comprised of all school teachers, and feature the vocals of the electric, Alejandro Williams. There is also an Old Daley Chicken BBQ being held at Germania Hall from 2-5 p.m. to fulfill the chicken dinner tradition of the Uncle Sam weekend.
   The annual festival that we usually have was stopped this year, due to dwindling attendance, and the fact that the committee took a real financial bath last year, due to the terrible weather conditions. Plus, the committee felt that the families were no loinger attending, leaving the, give me cheap beer crowd.
So please join us for all the fun and excitement here in the Home of Uncle Sam, all weekend long.
And most of all folks, ENJOY TROY!

Friday, September 2, 2011

6th Annual Uncle Sam Jam/Power in the Park Classic Car Show:

The 6th annual Uncle Sam Jam will be taking place this Saturday at Powers Park. I've posted some pics of the first event, which we staged down behind Brown's. That day, we had 7 bands perform, along with belly dancers, rides for the kids, as well as wine tasting. I worked on the first event with Traci Christopher, then of Revolution Hall. We had a great crowd, until the rain hit that day. It's tough doing outdoor events in early October because of the weather, so the following year I moved the event to early September, at Riverfront Park. But attendance was not where we felt it should be,plus it was tough having 6 or 7 bands in a 6 hour time frame. In 2009 I moved the event again to Powers Park, and cut it down to three bands. Attendance spiked more than 50% the first year in it's new home. Last year, we added the classic car show and saw attendance spike even higher, with more than 2,000 attending over the course of the day. This years musical lineup includes, Stuck on Stupid at 2 p.m. --Emerald City, the Reunion Tour at 4 - and the Blue Machine, with Tommy Love at 6. The car show begins at 12 p.m., and is presented by the South Troy Timing Association. You can register your vehicle right at the park also. Food and drinks will be available, so grab a lawn chair, bring the kids, and come join us to ENJOY TROY! Read the Saturday edition of the Record for more info. See you all there. Guitars and Cars --a wonderful concept




Thursday, August 25, 2011

Nitro Jive Coming toTroy Night Out:

Nitro Jive will be giving a special Troy Night Out performance this week. Their performance originally scheduled for June 24, was rained out. All I can tell you is that if you enjoy a great swing band -- these guy's are the real deal. We're setting up a stage at Monument Square for this one. Showtime is at 7 pm. If you enjoy Latino music, beginning at 5, there will be a return performance by DJ Gabe Lozado. He'll be setting up in the parking lot next to the Arts Center on River St. If you don't enjoy either of these genre's of music, you can walk over to Barker Park  to hear the fantastic Jazz group,  the Lou Russo Quartet, from 6:30 - 8 p.m. Another great job by BID Director, Elizabeth Young. Join us for this end of the summer bash!

Cryin Out Loud Returns to Powers Park:

Cryin Out Loud, one of the finest horn bands in the Capital District returns to Powers Park this weekend. Lead singer Gregg Simmons is an amazing performer who has a knack of getting the kids attending his shows to be a part of the show. By involved I mean he gets the kids on stage with him, and lets them sing, dance, and just have a great time. Many performers are just so full of themselves, they tend to forget that it's not all about them -- but that they are there for the people who came out to hear them. The children who come to the concert series with their parents sometimes get bored. Not with Simmons around they don't. Gregg always makes sure that they are a big part of it. The band itself is just fantastic in my opinion, covering a very diverse set list. Being this is the final show of the regular season, I'm sure Mr. Simmons has a few tricks up his sleeve to make sure everyone in attendance, leaves the historic park with a big ol smile on their faces. Showtime is 6 p.m. Check with this blog on Saturday to make sure the show is on, being no one can say for sure when or if Hurricane Irene will be paying us a visit.
And please folks -- leave the dog at home or you may have to leave and bring your pet back home. Bring your dancing shoe's, party hat, and maybe an umbrella with you this week.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

More to Do In The 'Burgh This Weekend:

   After you enjoy the Stormfront show at Powers Park, make plans the following day to have an old time chicken dinner at the 55th Annual Rotary Club of Lansingburgh's, chicken barbecue. This is a 'take out only' event, which will happen right at the Boys & Girls Club, located at 113th St, on 4th Ave. The chicken dinner will be prepared by Brooks Famous BBQ, and will be served from 3-5 p.m.
Prices are:
Chicken Dinner -- Adults / $10     Children 12 & under / $5
Rib Dinner        --  Adults / $12     Children 12 & under / $7
Proceeds from this event will benefit the Boys & Girls Club & Community projects. Even if you can't attend, please consider making a donation to this worthwhile endeavour. For tickets, call the club at 235-4143, or just any member of the Lansingburgh Rotary Club.

Getting Into A New York State of Mind This Weekend:

video
   One of the biggest drawing cards ever at Powers Park will be returning this Saturday. Make plans to join us at the historic park for a performance by crowd favorite, Stormfront. Mike O'Brien does an amazing job of replicating the music of the famed, 'Piano Man'. If you close your eye's during one of his shows, you would swear you were listening to Billy Joel. His mannerisms, voice and fantastic stage presence bring to life all of Billy Joel's popular hits with accuracy, and precision. His band, Stormfront is rock solid in their delivery of some pretty intricate musical arrangements, and just rock the house with their stellar talent.
   Being I ask every week that concert goers leave their pooch at home, I'll try it again, NO DOGS ALLOWED. Cmon folks, Fido isn't going to get that lonely while you're gone. There's no beer allowed either folks --sorry. Bring your own lawn chair and get there early for a good spot as I expect one of the largest crowds of the season this week.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Tonight's Show is a Go:

The weather seems to be cooperating with us this week, so it looks like tonight's Renee' Lussier & Branchwater show is on. Showtime is 6 p.m. Bring a lawnchair.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

My Favorite Returns to Powers Park:

My favorite area performer returns to the Neil Kelleher Stage at Powers Park this weekend. Renee' Lussier, who has pretty much grown up on Troy stages, returns, by extremely popular demand on Saturday night. I remember the first time I met this young lady when she was just 13 yrs old. Mature beyond her years, she took the stage with the North 40 Band at the first Uncle Sam Jam in 2006. As soon as the first note came out of her mouth, I just said, WOW!  Back then, you could see the talent, and poise she possessed on stage, along with the potential for bigger and better things, career wise.
Over the course of time, her talent has grown stronger, as has her on stage charisma and presence.
In the past 8 seasons at Powers Park, Renee has become a real fan favorite, and the only performer we've ever had that needed an autograph table set up for her fans.
Renee's show starts at 6 pm, so get there early for a good spot at the historic Lansingburgh park. Bring your own lawn chair please. Hope to see you all there on Saturday.

Rockin on the River Tonight:

Rockin on the River continues tonight with a performance by crowd favorite, Blues for Breakfast/ The group covers the Grateful Dead, and have a great following. They've been one of the most popular groups to grace the big stage at the concert series, since it's inception 4 years ago. Showtime is at 5:30, so come on down & ENJOY TROY!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Cheapest Gas in Town:

Everyone is struggling with the high gas prices we're paying these days. Fahim Kater of the Neighborhood Discount Grocery, located at 113th St. & 5th Ave. has lowered the price of Regular gas to $3.69. This price is only on for a few days, so get there, fill up and grab that 20 cent savings.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Update - Powers Park Al Bruno

It's 4pm... Weather isn't cooperating and things don't look that great at the moment.

However we are remaining optimistic that the show will go on as scheduled.

Please check back at 5pm for the latest update on this evenings show. At the moment we are still on schedule, weather permitting.

Stay tuned!

Tonight at Powers Park:

Tonight's performance by Al Bruno will go on.
Bring your own lawn chair -- and umbrella!
Showtime is 6 p.m.

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Return of Bruno:

Powers Park's favorite son, Al Bruno will return to the historic park for the 7th time this Saturday. Known as one of the most respected area entertainers, Al has been thrilling Capital District audiences for more than three decades. His dead on renditions of Neil Diamond, and other artist, takes the crowd to a different place, bringing back fond memories of days gone by. Showtime is 6 p.m. In the event of rain, call 279-7162 for up to date show, and cancellation info.

Uncle Sam Jam Coming:

Coming to Troy this September 3 -- beginning at 2 p.m. More on this later this month. Just wanted ot put the seed in your head!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Many Folks Enjoyed Troy This Past Week:

   Thousands of people came to Troy this past week. Thousands left Troy with a good feeling about this wonderful city of ours. Beginning on Wednesday evening at Rockin on the River, around 5,000 came and enjoyed Michael Jackson Tribute band, Who's Bad. This was, by far the best attended Rockin show ever, with the show being nothing short of spectacular! Friday nights, Troy Night Out was well attended, and included a Latino Dance Party on River St-  which was by the way, a great deal of fun. This feature brought more than 100 members of the Latino community, who danced the night away -- until the rain came that is.
   Saturday was just crazy at Powers Park, with the Refrigerators coming to the Historic park for the first time. The band was just fantastic, as was the crowd. More than 1,500 strong came and partied the night away at probably the best attended show ever at Powers. Sunday's first, Family Fun Day, at Carroll Hill School was also well attended, and quite a bit of fun. A musical performance by the wonderful teen girl group, Emeralds of July, along with Mike McCrae / Juggling Dangerously, and Magician Jeffrey Jene, provided the children with a full afternoon of fun and entertainment. The Troy PD did child safety seat checks, and provided some parents with new ones. The Troy FD was there giving tours of a firetruck to the children, along with educating them on safety procedures in their home. Overall, it was a great event for the people of the East side of Troy.
   It always thrills me to see great crowds coming to our city, and enjoying our city. I hope whoever the mayor is come Jan 1, that they will see what a benefit these events are to our city. Harry Tutunjian, whether you like him or not, has revitilized this city. Remember when there was nothing to do here -- I do, and do not want to see it happen again. Our Troy events brings THOUSANDS of people, who wouldn't normally come to Troy. It would be a real shame to see it all end with the momentum we have going now. Enjoy Troy people --- Enjoy Troy!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Big Weekend in Troy:

There's a full weekend of fun planned here in Troy this weekend:
* Troy Night Out happens this evening. Beginning at 5 p.m., the streets of our city will come alive with Troy Night Out. Plenty of music, food, and excitement each last Friday of every month. Special performance tonight by Latin DJ, Gabriel Lozado.

* Saturday at Powers Park  --- 1st time appearance at the popular concert series by the legendary, Refrigerators. Showtime is 6 p.m.

* Sunday at Carroll Hill School, beginning at 2 p.m. -- 1st ever -- Troy Family Fun Day. Musical performance by Emeralds of July. Magician Jeffrey Jene, and Mike the Juggler. Food fun and prizes all day.

Got nothing to do this weekend --- look no further.
ENJOY TROY!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Allman Brother Tribute Show At Powers Park:

If you enjoy Southern Rock, join us at Powers Park this Saturday for a tribute by the Killer B,to the best of the best, the Allman Brothers. Over the years the popular concert series has presented numerous tribute shows including tributes to, Billy Joel, Beatles, Rolling Stones, Elvis, Neil Diamond, & Janis Joplin. The Allman Brothers have long been considered the grand-daddy of  all the great Southern Rock groups, bursting on the national scene with the release of their amazing, "Live at the Fillmore East ", album in 1971. The Killer B will feature the dynamic duel guitar work of masters, Joe Mele, and Frank Daley, along with the Killer B signature Hammond B3 keyboard work of the amazing, Tony Perrino. Showtime is at 6 p.m. on July 23. Food & non-alcoholic beverages are available at the shows. There is a no alcohol / no dog policy at the shows.
The Powers Park Concert Series is presented by the City of Troy, & Wellcare. They are supported in part by, Whitney Young Health Center / Troy, The Snowman, Northeast Shuttle, Beverage Barn, Barrett Blacktopping, Troy UFA, New Dawg in Town, and the Friends of 112th St. For up to date show info, call, 279-7162.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Troy's Going To Be Hopping This Weekend:

                                         Back 40 Band
Troy is the place to be this weekend, with multiple events happening, at two points in the city. Beginning at 10 am on Saturday, the 4th Annual Troy Pig Out, at Riverfront Park will kick off. Last year, more than 30,000 attended this wildly popular bar b que event. 5 bands will be performing on Saturday, beginning at 11 a.m., including, the Lustre Kings, Sly Fox & the Hustlers, with local legend Ernie Williams headlining. Sunday's musical lineup includes, the Vibratones, Joe Mele Blues Band, along with the recently reunited, Emerald City. Hailed as the top local band in the 1980's, Emerald City will hit the stage at Riverfront Park at 2:30 p.m. Join us for all the food and music over the weekend.
   The Back 40 Band will headline this weeks country show at Historic, Powers Park in Lansingburgh. Long recognized as the area's # 1 country act, the group will perform at Powers for the first time. Having opened for such national acts over the years as, Trica Yearwood, Rascall Flatts, Diamond Rio, and Billy Ray Cyrus, the group has maintained a high level of excellence over the past two decades.
Their show kicks off at 6 p.m. on Saturday evening. No alcohol or dogs are allowed at the concert series.
Bring your own lawn chair.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Powers Park Kickoff Tonight:

   For all the details, visit, www.troyrecord.com  Or, read today's Record, page 6. It's going to be a beautiful afternoon, so join us for the Neighborhood Safety Day at 4 p.m., & our opening act, Cupcake Explosion at 5:45, with headliner, Four at 6 p.m.

Enjoy Troy!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Swing Night At Riverfront Park:

Get your dancing shoes on this Friday Night, as the City of Troy & the BID team up to present a special, Swing Night with Nitro Jive. at Riverfront Park -- as part of the popular, Troy Night Out. Nitro Jive will be coming in as an 8 piece act, playing swing hits from yesteryear & today. Hep-Cat Front man Bill Deuel prowls the stage like a panther, providing excitement with a high level of energy & bravado, which takes his well trained group of musicians to a higher level. Nitro Jive is pure excitement on stage. So join us for all the fun this coming Friday night.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Los Straitjackets:

Since I couldn't get their pic up on my last post  --here's your headliner for River St. Festival. These guys are just a phenomenal instrumental rock n roll band. They've toured the world with great success, and critical acclaim.Check them out on YouTube -- their appearance on Conan was classic! Special thanks to former Troy Deputy Mayor, Dan Crawley for making sure this show happened.

2011 River St. Festival Music:

The 2011 River St. Festival takes place this Saturday, June 18th, beginning at 10 a.m. More than 70 food, craft, jewelery, along with a wide variety of other products, will be available up and down River St. 3 stages of music will fill the street at one of Troy's signature events of the summer season. Los Straitjackets, the USA's top instrumental rock n roll band will headline the National Stage, set up at 2nd St. & Broadway. They hit the stage at 4:40 p.m. Graham Tichy, one of the area's premier guitarist will open the day at 11 am with the Graham Tichy Project. The eclectic Neanderthals will go on at 1 p.m., followed by former MTV darlings, Blotto. 
The local stage this year will be set up on the corner of River & State St. Performing this year in the following order will be, The Ginger Brothers, Museum Guards, Simple Theory, Sly Fox & the Hustlers, with local favorite, the Joe Mele Blues Band headlining.
 A children's stage will be set up by the Arts Center, featuring a variety of  entertainment, geared towards kids.. Food, arts and crafts, great weather, and fantastic music all add up to wonderful experience. Come join us and take a, Troycation!


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Powers Park Concerts Return:

For all the details on this years Powers Park Concert Series, read my 'Troy's Treasures' column appearing in this newspaper on Sunday, June 12

Thursday, April 21, 2011

McDonough Fundraiser:

   The Lansingburgh community is banding together to help out one of its own. Tim & Marion McDonough, and their children were burned out of their home several months ago. They have been living in a hotel waiting for their house to be rebuilt ever since. As you can probably imagine, the McDonough's are laying out quite a bit of money eating out -- along with other massive expenses related to living in a hotel for an extended period of time.
  Longtime friend, Kevin Vandenburgh, along with Pip's proprietor, Janis Zanda, and myself will be hosting a fundraiser at Pip's Athletic Lounge on Sunday, May 1, beginning at 2 p.m. Suggested donation is $20, with every penny going to the McDonough family. Food, music, and raffles will highlight the day, which I'm sure will be strongly supported by the community.
   The McDonough family has been in the 'Burgh for generations, and have been active forces in the community.. Tim & Marion have volunteered their time, as their children have gone through Lansingburgh sports programs -- with Tim still coaching. Their daughter Mindy is the new coach of Knickerbocker Middle School's modified baseball team --and doing a fine job I might add! The point I'm making here is that they are a large part of the 'Burgh, and it's up to us, their neighbors to help them out during this major disruption of their lives.
   If you can't make it to the fundraiser and would like to make a donation, please make your check out to:
Tim or Marion McDonough
      send to:
The McDonough Fund
PO Box 251
Troy NY 12181

   Tickets will be available at the door, or send me an e-mail at, vitociccarelli@gmail.com - to reserve a spot..
I hope to see you all there. It's all about the 'Burgh!

Monday, April 18, 2011

EXTRA, EXTRA::Easter Bunny Coming Back to the 'Burgh

   4/18/2011 (Lansingburgh); The world famous, Easter Bunny has announced he will be making a return appearance at Historic Powers Park on Saturday, April 23, at 12 p.m. Last year he performed to a SRO crowd of happy children, at the Summer mecca for lawn chair concert goers. "Over the years I've traveled to many communities to participate in their local egg hunts. But the 'Burgh is special to me, and the children always make me feel right at home, " said Mr. E. Bunny
   Last year, more than 200 children attended the hunt, with at least 200 happy children leaving with candy and a smile. "I think it's just great that the folks at Hannaford Supermarket, and Whitney Young Health in Troy donate all the candy for the hunt every year. And it's nice of the City of Troy to donate the use of the park too," added the Easter Bunny.

   This years event will begin at 12 p.m.. It is open to children ages 1 -10 years old, and will be held, rain or shine!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Hello Again to Chubby's:

   In case you hadn't noticed, Chubby's has returned to the 'Burgh. The corner of 114th & 5th Ave is once again complete, with the re-opening of Chubby's Subs. The eatery shut down for a few months, to re-organize, and re-energize what I call, the 'Bermuda Triangle' of my stomach. Between Chubby's & Snowman Ice Cream, I'm sure my battle of the bulge will once again be a losing battle. You see, I, like many others suffer from this eating affliction of HAVING to combine, a Top Rounder, with a cone from the Snowman. I'm sure that this combo does not meet the new recommendation by the federal government, that we eat no more than 600 calories per meal.
   If you remember what a Neba was, and haven't tried Chubby's, I recommend that you do so right away. I've seen so many different places try to replicate a real Neba over the years. None have been able to replace the iconic sandwich in my opinion -- until Chubby's came around. Real, fresh cooked roast beef, on a sesame roll -- now thats the real deal. They also have great subs, soups & salads, all at very family friendly prices. Not to mention the homemade potato chips -- which I normally do not eat -- but who can resist those homemade spud delights at Chubby's?
   Welcome back Chubby's --- you were missed. Remember to support your local businesses & eateries as much as possible. Every time you go across the river to spend your expendable income, you increase the chance of having a vacant storefront in your community. Enjoy Troy!!!!!!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Baseball, Steroids, & Government Waste

   With the opening day of baseball coming up fast, fans like myself are looking forward to hearing the words, play ball, resonate throughout the nation. But once again, as it has over the past few seasons, steroids in our beloved game dominate the headlines. The Barry Bonds saga is a sad one.
When he burst on the scene in 1987 as a second generation superstar, he was lean, fast, and could do it all on a ball-field.  As he grew older his body, we'll just say kind of, overdeveloped. Look, it was as obvious as the never ending voter fraud conspiracy case in Troy, that the guy was on the juice. I mean, his head even got bigger!
  
With that said, the point I'm driving at here is that this whole big investigation into steroid use in baseball -- is a Fucillo HUGE waste of money. Who the heck cares about what a ball player is doing to himself. The government gives people a Social Security check if they're drug addicts or alcoholics. But they persecute baseball players for using performance enhancing drugs? Not that I'm condoning the use of them, but what's the difference between doing steroids, and players in the 60's thru the 90's, using amphetamines, or players in the 70's & 80's using cocaine as a means to stay stronger & be more alert? All were illegal --correct?

   In my mind, there's no place for any of that in baseball -- but it did occur, and there's nothing that can change what's already happened. But for the Federal Government to waste millions upon millions of dollars investigating this issue, with more going to be spent, it's time to put an end to it all. Could you imagine if just a fraction of that money could go towards helping the homeless,or feeding the hungry? Or maybe putting some of it towards finding a cure for cancer, or ALS. Or distributing money to struggling municipalities facing critical fiscal times.
    
   The athletes who used performance enhancing drugs will suffer later in life, and they have nobody to blame but themselves. Some are already paying. Watch Jason Giambi, or A-Rod as they now have more and more leg injuries. Giambi injured a hamstring just walking to the dugout a few seasons ago for God's sake. I pray that they don't both wind up like pro footballer, Lyle Alzado, who died a horrible death, directly related to steroid use. I'd love for the government to furnish us with a tally sheet with the total cost  of this investigation. These publicity hungry politico's should move on real issues. All to often they forget what got them there, and use taxpayers funds like it's their own piggy bank.

   Barry Bonds lied under oath, for that, he will probably pay dearly -- as well he should. What I'm saying though is that the whole investigation by the government should never had started. The money could have been put to better use.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Friends Dinner:

I've been sworn to secrecy and have been threatened with severe pain if I reveal any of the happenings from the recent, Friends of 112th St. Dinner. I however, do not respond well to threats, so read my next Troy's Treasures for all the low-lites of the dinner,  and more on the antics of Tom Fox. If you can't wait that long to read about it, read James Franco ( Not the one nominated for an Academy Award either) in this coming Thursday's, Record. 

Welcome To NY --Empty Your Pockets Please :

   An interesting bill is being introduced by Queens Assemblyman Michael DenDekker. It would mandate registration- similar to a motor vehicle- for every bicycle in the state, complete with license plates hanging from the rear of the seat. Another separate measure is also being introduced which would force every commercial cyclist in the state to carry identification, and to have insurance. Of course, there is an initial $25 fee for the first year, and $5 each additional year for recreational cyclist -- with a $50 fee for commercial cyclist, plus the cost of insurance.
   One part of me says, damn them -- another tax,  and another way for them to keep track of us and what we're doing. 1984 anyone! But looking at the fee for commercial cyclist I say -- why not? It make sense, especially for the metro NY area,  with the high volume of commercial cyclist there. If you read the Post or Daily News on a regular basis, you always see stories of accidents between motor vehicles and bike messengers. Now the motor vehicle owner is mandated to carry liability insurance, register & have their vehicle inspected on a regular basis in NY State to operate his vehicle on public roads. Not to mention the pick pocketing fee's and taxes that commercial truckers must pay. Commercial cyclist use the same roads to earn a living -- so why does one have to pay, the other gets off for free, and is not mandated to carry insurance? Bike runs through a red light and smashes into your car -- you pay for the damage. Get what I'm saying here?
   As far as imposing a fee on recreational bikes.  What are they going to do -- have cops pull over a 10 year old for not having plates? Please! This is totally insane. But it is NY State, and I guess we should be used to it by now. I can see it now, cops writing tickets to a crying kid, who parents may not have had the extra $25 to register the bike. Or maybe a sticker check/road block on the Lansingburgh Bike Trail. Where does this nonsense end? Will parents using non-disposable diapers be taxed for the release of  excess Methane gas into the atmosphere, with parents using a non landfill friendly disposable diaper gaining a tax credit for containing the gas in plastic? Tax, after tax, after tax. Just once I'd like to see one of these state elected officials come up with an original idea to generate revenue from some place else other then the money tree they must think we all grow in our back yards. Not a peep from any of them over the sharp increase in gas prices -- but since more people are using their bikes as transportation due to the high gas prices, politicians figure that they'll need to make up the revenue from somewhere -- and we are their favorite well to dip into, aren't we?
   Write a letter to your local assemblyman and ask him to vote no on this bill. Tell him you're a bike rider, and as long as you're not breaking any laws -- it's none of their damn business, so stop trying to pick my pocket!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

My Dinner With Rob Gregor:

   A few years ago there was a candidate for Troy City Council named Rob Gregor. Now even though we were on completely different sides of the political isle,  we became fast friends. After his council run, Rob became Co-Chairman of the Troy City Democratic party. He had some very fresh and exciting idea's, and had the ability to put politics aside, in order to just get the job done -- a concept that seems to be on the wrong side of extinction.
   Now Rob is a very bright guy, and he all of a sudden decided he wanted to get a law degree, and begin a practice. After graduation, he went to work for the US Attorneys Office in Manhattan. Now Rob already had a degree in Hotel Management, and one day decided he would like to go to work in this field. So he packed up his things and bought a beautiful hotel in Kingfield Maine  - the Herbert Grand, which he's operated with his lovely bride over the past 3 years.
   He gave me a call a couple of weeks ago to tell me he was going to be in town, and we wound up getting together and having dinner at Dinosuar. Rob told me he was in the process of closing on a hotel in Lake George, with the intent of purchasing a few more at the Summer vacation mecca.
I'm thrilled that my friend is doing so well for himself, and I'm extremely happy that he's found a beautiful wife to share the journey with him. I was so happy, I let him buy dinner that night also!
   I really wish he was still involved with Troy politics though. Rob was an open minded type of politico, who was interested in only the bottom line -- helping the residents of Troy. He was, and is a bi-partisan type who's only concern was doing the right thing for the people. To bad he's moved on -- he would have been a great candidate for this years mayors race. Some of the jokers we have around here in political office, and who have thrown  their names into the hat for the mayors race, always tell you what a great job they're doing, and how transparent they are going to be. But it's nonsense & hot air in most cases. Just look at the ongoing Voter Fraud debacle. How in God's name can any person who's involved with that despicable case, even think about putting their name out there to lead our city?  I hope people see through the smoke screen. It's just ridiculous.
   Rob asked me to send his best to all of his friends here. He misses Troy, and was the kind of guy that you hate to see leave.I wish my friend well with his new endeavour, and I'm sure I'll be seeing much more of him this coming summer season. I'll have more on Rob's new business venture in the near future.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

You've Got To Have Friends -- Of 112th St. That Is:

The 34th Annual Friends of 112th St. Dinner & Political Roast will be held on Saturday, February 26, at St. Augustines Hall -- 4th Ave &; 114th St. Tickets are $35. Visit, www,friendsof112thst.com for info on how to purchase tickets. With all the shenanigans going on in Troy politics these days, you can expect more than a few feathers to get ruffled that night. It's sort of like the Friars Roast, only a lot worse.
For more information, you'll have to read my Troy's Treasures column this Sunday, February 20th, only in this newspaper. If you've never gone, I suggest you grab a ticket, sit back, and watch the steam come from the targets heads.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Goodby John McLoughlin:

   I've lived in the Capital District for 51 of my 54 years on this Earth. There's many things which make our region unique, and in ways special. If you've lived here for a long period of time, you know who Nipper the RCA dog is, and where his perch was. You know where the best Italian restaurant is, and what car wash doesn't scratch your car. Local television personalities are like members of your family, with many of the local guy's and gal's in the business hanging around for many years -- the good one's at least.
   You tend to remember certain personalities like Rip Rowen, Bob MacNamara, Ed Dague, & Dick Wood. People you watched for many years. People who came into your kitchen or living room, every night at 6 & 11. One of the most recognizable in my life just signed off last night on WTEN. South Troy boy John McLoughlin said goodbye to viewers, viewers who knew and enjoyed his fine work over the years. He was a constant, an Irish uncle, a jokester, a face we came to know and trust.
   Now I don't know what led to John leaving a job, that many of us thought he would do forever. Did he leave voluntarily, was he pushed out? -- nobody knows for sure. If he was pushed out -- shame on WTEN, and I'd say it was a poor decision on their part. There's a lot to be said for continuity on local newscast. When you watched WTEN news at 6, John was always the guy with the BIG story. A professional journalist who always knew the correct time to throw a joke or two into his report, and when to play it straight. John was, and is a pro. I'll miss his style, wit, and professionalism, and will be looking forward to seeing him at the upcoming, Friends of 112th St. annual dinner on Feb 26.
   I watched his final broadcast last night, and I was appalled at the sign off they gave him -- a 60 second retrospect highlighting some of his reports. For a man who garners much more respect than some of the suits at WTEN who made this decision ever will, I thought there should have been more. Why not a 30 minute special show highlighting his life and career. He deserves it, and I think it would generate very high ratings for WTEN. He was highly respected by all who ever knew him or worked with him, a fact that seems to have been forgotten by his employers.
   Good luck to John in this, the next chapter in his life --- and GOOD luck to WTEN trying to replace him.
 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Stay Warm - Go Bowling in the 'Burgh:

   If your bored with being shut in the house, bowling is a great way to beat the doldrums of a long winter. Here in the 'Burgh, Alpha Lanes offers some very family friendly activities, and prices. Lansingburgh High School's boy & girls bowling teams use Alpha as it's home turf, with the establishment offering reduced prices  for Youth Bowling on Saturday mornings. They also work with the Boys & Girls Club, participating in an after school program for kids to bowl, along with offering discount coupons for kids while they are on the many breaks they receive during the school year. Family coupons are also made available online. Owner Joe Scaccia has a HUGE heart when it comes to raising money for a worthwhile effort. There's been so many fundraisers that I've seen in my 21 years living in this community, I couldn't possibly list all of them -- there's not enough space! Alpha also has leagues going every night of the week, and offer a special, Casino Ladies Night on Wednesdays. They have a full snack bar with great pizza, along with a variety of fine beverages, with OTB Easy Bet available right there.

   Bowling is as American as apple pie, so be a Patriot and support your local Alpha Lanes. Keep your money local.