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The Villages

What We Learned About The Nyacks in 2022

This week in the Villages: We take a look back through the biggest, most popular, most interesting and most impactful news stories of the year in our Nyack-centric coverage area. Plus, other local news, your 2023 year-long weather prediction, a Covid update, upcoming meetings and much more. Thanks for being here!

My Year Exploring “The Villages” of Rockland

In February 2022, I quietly started writing “The Villages” column here at Nyack News & Views as part of my new role as editor — a job I’d agreed to fill in December but was procrastinating on starting.

Writing anything for public consumption is hard. Editing a newspaper, no matter the size (or actual “paper”-ness), is even harder. And when things get difficult, when challenges appear on the near horizon, most of us tend to procrastinate. It’s easier that way. At least in the moment.

But the key to avoiding procrastination and tackling any tough task is to start doing it, even if you don’t feel “ready” or “good” about it.

You take one step. You rake one leaf. You write one word.

Coming into the year, The Villages was one of the pillars holding up NNV’s contributions to the local conversation — along with Mike Hays’ indispensable “Nyack People & Places”, Bill Batson’s inimitable “Nyack Sketch Log” and our Weekly Recommendation for entertainment and events.

My primary goal at the beginning of (what I needed to believe was) this hero’s journey — as NNV founder Dave Zornow (the Yoda to my Luke Skywalker) reminded me often — was to “keep the lights on.”

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So, I started my journey as editor by writing one edition of The Villages. It included a brief roundup of news from other local outlets (a special holiday thanks, Lohud, especially Steve Lieberman and Nancy Cutler, for continuing to cover Rockland County!), a Covid update and updates on the civic affairs (meetings, notices, announcements, etc.) from local municipalities (aka “the villages”).

This first step served twin purposes.

One, it helped keep the lights on. Light is very important when it comes to covering local issues. The Washington Post morbidly, but correctly, reminds its readers on its masthead that “Democracy Dies in Darkness” and I agree wholeheartedly.

Two, the Villages helped me learn (and hopefully others) about the Nyacks and their place in our larger community — Rockland County.

Here’s what I learned in a year writing the Villages in 2022:

That’s a lot of learning and illumination.

We’ll keep tweaking the format and trying new things in this space in the year to come. We’ll try to be more consistent and interesting. But mostly, we will be doing our best to keep the lights on and shining in 2023! One word at a time!

Stay tuned …

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NNV’s Top 5 Most Popular Stories in 2022

These are our top stories by traffic this year:

1. “The Surprising Story of the Ku Klux Klan in Rockland County”

2. “Rockland Election Results Too Close to Call”

3. “Ex-Coach Calls Out Nyack School Officials”

4. “Two People Shot in Nyack, Hello Week and Other Local News”

5. “School Board Race Amid Partisan Backdrop”

Fun with NNV traffic stats

More than 114,000 people visited more than 346,000 pages on Nyack News & Views in 2022.

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Quote of the week

“One of the many hardships we faced during the pandemic is the toll it took on the mental health of our residents. That is why we are utilizing some of the American Rescue Plan funds to invest in the well-being of our families by creating more green spaces they can benefit from for generations to come.”Rockland County Executive Ed Day announcement of a $10 million investment in local hiking trails and following research showing an increase in physical inactivity among Rockland residents

Video of the week: my favorite new year’s song right now

In other relevant news:

ICYM NNV’s weekly features: Bill Batson’s latest “Nyack Sketch Log”; Mike Hays’ most recent “Nyack People & Places”; and our coverage in last week’s “The Villages”; Jessica Goodman’s latest Nyack Schools Report. If you haven’t read it yet, please check our vision for the future of Nyack News & Views and how you can help build our coverage and capacity.

Weather prediction (through 2023)

Without any scientific rationale, I’m predicting a snow-filled January, but less frigid February, followed by an earlier start to spring and a super sweltering summer that will last until late September. Fall foliage will continue to procrastinate its way into late November and even December. [Click here for the National Weather Service‘s latest 7-day forecast for the Nyack area.]

Covid Update! (threat level: High)

According to CDC data of recent hospitalizations and cases, Rockland’s community level of Covid-19 is now considered “High.” With a high designation, the CDC recommends wearing masks indoors while in public and on public transportation.  (CDC stats updated 12/29/22 — back on 12/4/22 the threat level was considered “medium”.)

Date from CDC retrieved 12/29/22

To find out what case and hospitalization trends look like in your town, click here.

Here’s the CDC’s data on Rockland.

Testing Info

  • More than 82.4% of eligible people in Rockland County are vaccinated with at least one dose. To schedule an appointment for a 1st dose, 3rd dose (for immunocompromised), or booster COVID-19 vaccine from any Rockland County Department of Health Clinic visit rocklandgov.com/departments/health/. To search for additional COVID-19 vaccination opportunities nearby visit vaccines.gov.
  • Find a COVID-19 testing site near you, by visiting coronavirus.health.ny.gov. Individuals who have questions regarding eligibility or access for testing should call the New York State COVID-19 Hotline at 1-888-364-3065 or visit the NYSDOH website covid19screening.health.ny.gov.

Village updates

Nyack

  • Drop off humanitarian aid for victims of the war in Ukraine (including first aid, painkillers, blankets, baby food, diapers, non-perishable food, antibiotics and more, at Village Hall, 9 N. Broadway (or at the Orangetown town hall, 26 W. Orangeburg Rd.).

Upper Nyack

South Nyack

  • Due to reader request, we have re-added South Nyack, which dissolved as an official village earlier this year. Please send us info about what’s going on in South Nyack at info@nyacknewsandviews.com.

Orangetown

Clarkstown

  • The Technical Advisory Committee, which “evaluates the technical adequacy of land development applications and decides their readiness for Planning Board review,” meets most Wednesdays, including this Wednesday, from 10 am to noon, in the town hall’s Historic Map Room.
  • For a calendar list of all Clarkstown meetings and events, click here.

Other Local Updates

South Nyack advocates have filed a petition with the town of Orangetown seeking to show support for a new Elizabeth Place Playground — the grassy play area and dog park just south of 87 and right off the Esposito trail. After South Nyack dissolved in March, the town found the playground equipment at Elizabeth Place was unsafe and not compliant with ADA regulations and removed it. A new ADA compliant park has been proposed and advocates want to see the proposal approved and implemented. Click here to read and/or sign the petition.

Nyack Schools

Rockland-wide

A rare polio case was recently discovered in Rockland County. Here’s some info on how to protect yourself:

  • New Yorkers can pre-register for a free polio vaccination appointment here or call 845-238-1956 to schedule. Walk-ins will also be accepted.
  • Vaccines are also available through local healthcare providers, including Federally Qualified Health Centers.
  • For more information on polio including symptoms and spread, visit NYSDOH’s page here.
  • New Yorkers can learn more about the polio vaccine available in the U.S. at CDC’s page here.
  • The Reviving Rockland Restaurants Grant Program will reimburse businesses between $5,000 and $25,000 for past expenses or fund future expenses for eligible outdoor dining COVID-19 mitigation equipment. Eligible entities include restaurants, food stands, food trucks, bars, saloons, lounges, taverns, bakeries, delis, cafes, breweries, wineries, and other similar places of business. For more information and to download an application visit rocklandgov.com.
  • Fill out this survey to help the county provide better digital services.

Connect with Nyack News and Views

Note to readers: We want to hear from you and welcome your input! What do you think we should be covering in your Rockland County village? Let us know at info@nyacknewsandviews.com. Send us story ideas, issues to investigate, letters, reviews, photos, videos, feedback and news tips. And read about our vision for delivering high-quality, hyper-local journalism and how you can help us fulfill our mission going forward.




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