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The Villages

Fireworks Then Floods Hit Hudson Valley (Plus More Local Stories)

This week in the Villages we look at fireworks on the Hudson and flooding in North Rockland. Plus, we have an official race for Rockland’s congressional seat, other local news, quotes and videos of the week, a weather prediction, a Covid update, upcoming meetings and much more. Thanks for being here!

Fireworks on the Hudson

We’ll start this edition of Villages with some fireworks! Despite the stormy weather that came back to flood us over the weekend (see below), fireworks went off above the Hudson River on Independence Days. Here are a couple of shots from the July 4th action looking out from marina in Nyack by our own Andrea Swenson.

Photo by Andrea Swenson
Photo by Andrea Swenson

Floods follow the fireworks

Last weekend and up into Monday morning, torrential rain brought massive flooding to Rockland and Orange counties. The storms resulted in at least one death of a woman who was trying to leave her home when she was caught in a rising current.

Check out the scene in Stony Point on Sunday:

Here’s the latest update from County Executive Ed Day:

Stay tuned and be in touch …

In other relevant news:

As part of a coordinated effort throughout the United States and Canada, Rockland’s Haitian community’s walked and rallied to highlight the need for “Relief for Haiti”. Specifically, participants wanted to underscore the problem of guns being sold to Haitian gangs in a country with a non-functioning government and an overwhelmed police force. Read the story on lohud and check out their video below.

Also, in the news:

Nyack College, which hastily sold all of its Nyack area properties a couple of years ago to the consternation, shut down after recently losing its accreditation.

Six months into his term, Mike Lawler, Rockland’s sole congressional representative, is now officially facing off against his predecessor, Mondaire Jones to retain his seat beyond 2024. Let the politicking begin!

41 Days Later: Still waiting for answers in the death of Sean Harris

Until we receive answers from Clarkstown police or the state attorney general’s office, we’ll continue to highlight the lack of information in the case of Sean Harris, who died under suspicious circumstances after an hours-long standoff with police on May 30.

Watch the video from Truth 2 Power below to learn more about what happened and why family, friends and police reform advocates say they want answers.

Here’s our breakdown of what happened.

Here’s Lohud reporter Nancy Cutler’s in-depth piece on Harris and his mother’s warranted suspicions about her son’s death here.

Where we’re at: The Attorney General’s office says it is still conducting a preliminary investigation into Harris’ death and how Clarkstown police handled the whole situation. Meanwhile, Clarkstown officials say the case is an ongoing investigation and therefore will not release any information about it to the public — despite an ongoing demand from Harris’ family and local police advocates.

This is what we still want to know:

  • Why were police called to the scene initially, given the discrepancy between Harris’ mother’s story and what police said they were told by social workers?
  • Why did police feel it was necessary to fire “less lethal munitions” at Harris, who was inside of his own home, posing no immediate threat to anyone, at the time police fired?
  • What effect, physically and psychologically, did getting hit with the munition have on Harris?
  • Why don’t we have a cause of death or an official report from the medical examiner’s office, almost a month after Harris’ death? (You would think police would be eager to release this information because it would corroborate their story. Unless it doesn’t.)

We will continue to search for answers and continue to follow up with the attorney general’s office and Clarkstown police.

Quote of the week:

Video of the week:

ICYM NNV’s weekly features: Bill Batson’s latest “Nyack Sketch Log”; Mike Hays’ most recent “Nyack People & Places”; and our coverage in our last edition of “The Villages”; Our 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 July 16)

Sunny and hot through Wednesday, then thunderstorms expected on Thursday and Friday. High 80s and some chance of thunderstorms this weekend. [Click here for the National Weather Service‘s latest 7-day forecast for the Nyack area. Click here for the latest Air Quality Index report for Nyack.]

Covid Update! (threat level: still “low”)

According to CDC data of recent hospitalizations and cases, Rockland’s community threat level of Covid-19 is now considered “Low” after spending 6 weeks over the holidays in the “high” range and then dropping to medium throughout January. With a low designation, the CDC recommends getting tested if you have symptoms or have contact with someone who tests positive. Otherwise, live your life. 

Village updates


  • Here’s the list of all upcoming meetings posted for the Village of Nyack.
  • If you could use help paying your water bills, click here.
  • 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



  • 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

Check out our latest Nyack Schools Report, a new regular feature we will post bi-monthly.

Find out what else is going on in Nyack-area schools at Home Page – Nyack Public Schools (


A rare polio case was recently discovered in Rockland County last summer. 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
  • Fill out this survey to help the county provide better digital services.

Musical Outro

Ladies and gentlemen, in the wake of Nyack College’s death, here’s Father John Misty, who went by the name Josh Tillman when he briefly attended Nyack College back in the day.

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 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.

Nyack People & Places, a weekly series that features photos and profiles of citizens and scenes near Nyack, NY, is sponsored by Sun River Health.

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