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Essex 7-31-10

An astute reader gently took me to task for using the terms village and hamlet interchangeably when referring to downtown Essex. Technically, in New York State, a village is a governmental entity with a mayor and board of trustees, like Keeseville or Lake Placid. The term hamlet refers to a smaller community within a town, like Whallonsburg or Wadhams. The Adirondack Park Agency also gets into the act with their own definition of hamlet. In truth, the town of Essex has no official villages within its bounds. I just like the word "village" better than the word "hamlet." All of this and much more about the administrative units of New York is explained on Wikipedia.

I learned there's a second rattlesnake in this area, the Massasauga rattler, Sistrurus catenatus. This is a smaller viper than the timber rattlesnake, only two feet long and more shy and retiring. It inhabits swamps and grasslands, and feeds on small mammals, frogs and other snakes. Catenatus is Latin for chained, which refers to its skin patterns.

On Wednesday, Aug. 4, there will be a fundraiser for ReNew at the shop. It goes from 6 to 10 p.m. and will feature refreshments and bargains.

Contractors on the sewer project are putting in the road to the site of the treatment plant and installing drain lines. Later this week, they plan to excavate for the treatment tank, the base of which will be 17 feet below the ground.

On Aug. 10, a bicycle tour will pass through Essex. There will be about 1,800 cyclists riding from Lake George to Montr al. Their route takes them along Route 22 to Whallonsburg, where they'll turn up Whallons Bay Road, then down to Lakeshore Road and into the hamlet. They will be served lunch at the fire house, and then make their way to Plattsburgh for the night.

A wise and perceptive reader noted I sometimes refer to Amy and Ginny without identifying them, which may lead some to think I'm a two-timer or cad. Lest the rumor mill start putting out bad information, let me state that Amy is in fact my wife of 30 years, the renowned horticulturist Amy Ivy. Ginny is our dog, a white border collie mix who usually accompanies me on my travels.

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