County Roundup

Read up on the recent Kingston bedbug epidemic, a petty puppy theft, and more new and notable news from around the Valley.

Rockland — 12-year-old Suffern resident Grace VanderWaal took the stage and advanced all the way to the semifinals on of America’s Got Talent. Using her ukulele, she sang her original song, which stole the hearts of viewers and spectators everywhere, including judge Simon Cowell, who called her “the next Taylor Swift.”

Grace VanderWaal

Putnam — Michael Klein, treasurer of Mahopac’s volunteer fire department, was arrested on charges of wire fraud and tax evasion and is being accused of embezzling $5.7 million. If found guilty, Klein could face up to 28 years in prison.

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Ulster — Watch out for those bedbugs! Kingston experienced a city-wide bedbug epidemic, and the Bedbug Coalition called for the adoption of stricter guidelines on how landlords handle bedbug infestations. 

Orange — Izzie, a 3-month-old puppy, and two 10-month-old kittens were abducted from the Middletown Humane Society shelter after an unknown individual broke in and stole the three baby animals. The break-in sparked a massive flow of donations, which resulted in an overall $1,500 reward for their safe return. Luckily, the two kittens have been found, but Izzie is still missing.

Greene — Dwight Grimm and Leigh Van Swall, owners of The Greenville Drive-In, have started an annual celebration that is the first of its kind. The First Annual Typewriter Art Festival was held at the drive-in and celebrated the contribution that the typewriter has made in the worlds of art, science, and music.

Columbia — Talk about an all-day field trip! Governor Andrew Cuomo recently announced the next steps in the creation of the Hudson River Skywalk, a scenic pedestrian trail (partially on the Rip Van Winkle Bridge), connecting Olana State Historic Site in Greenport to the Thomas Cole National Historic Site in Catskill. 

Dutchess — The Powerhouse Theater at Vassar College has reason to celebrate. This year’s Tony Award winners for Best Musical (Hamilton) and Best Play (The Humans) began as musical workshops at the theater. The six-week theater program is a partnership with the college and New York Stage and Film.

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Westchester — An unknown developer put up a bid for a staggering $1.4 million for the 80-year-old Larchmont Theater. After hearing the news of the sale, the folks at The Picture House in Pelham launched a $125,000 effort to save the village’s beloved theater but have thus far not received any million-dollar contributions.

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