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Let’s hear it for Narrowsburg’s beauty queens (and kings)!

By Tony Staffieri
July 20, 2016

If you haven’t noticed, Narrowsburg gets prettier and prettier every year. That’s not by chance. There’s a lot of hard work and coordination behind this beauty secret.

Last week, judges from America in Bloom (www.americainbloom.org) visited Narrowsburg to decide how our little hamlet meets their mission to spotlight “communities across the country as welcoming and vibrant places to live, work, and play—benefiting from colorful plants and trees.” That certainly describes Narrowsburg today.

The town has a real chance to win national recognition.

How all this happened is the real story. A group of very dedicated and indomitable women and men have worked their magic and made Narrowsburg simply stunning. It looks as if we are about to host a very big wedding.

Hats off to Star Hesse, who has taken the most improbable plots and strips of land and made them into beautiful oases of color and fragrance, from the front of the post office, to a wedge of soil along the DVAA, to a small plot of sidewalk land around an historical billboard near the firehouse and an empty lot next to the auto parts store.

An emerging building-perimeter garden and a birch tree gazebo are seen upon entering Narrowsburg through the efforts of Juliette Hermant, proprietor of the antique store on Bridge Street.

Added to this has been the enormous effort to paint the hamlet in the most delightful way. Under the co-leadership of one of our town board members, Jane Luchsinger, and her co-captain Joan Santo (who has been seen by more than a few people sweeping Main Street), flowering projects big and small have popped up everywhere from the embankment along the railroad tracks on Kirk Road, to pots and planters and a magical treatment of the Mews on Main Street. Madame Luchsinger does not shy away from the mountain of paperwork this all takes to thrive.And Madeleine Wootan has handled a veritable mountain of paperwork that this beauty initiative requires to thrive.

Iris Helfeld and her partner Mary Bermudez have also shown the power of teamwork. Their new gardens and planters surrounding the Narrowsburg Union are coming into their own, as well as pop-up gardens throughout the hamlet—including the new railroad bank-side installation on Kirk Road.