Monthly Archives: October 2013

I just adore Halloween. As a kid I loved dressing up as a witch or a ghost on this one day a year and heading out to trick-or-treat. Maybe I should have been an actress, so much do I get into the taking on of a different persona from the one I have 364 other days. I admit, I may have carried on a bit too much in my teens without benefit of costume, running around the park throwing eggs at classmates and getting squirted with chocolate syrup. We didn’t vandalize, didn’t steal pumpkins, didn’t really cause any trouble. I suspect adults back then peered out windows and wondered if we would misbehave in a big way. We didn’t. We just had fun, after which I went home late and washed eggshells out of my hair, the only victim of my night’s events being a ruined pair of Hershey’s- and yolk-soaked suede shoes.

Now I’m sort of old. Not exactly old, but…you know…older. Ah, but only older chronologically. My little Halloween heart remains young: I still like dressing up, although I admit eggs and chocolate are no longer in favor. And this year I got my Halloween fix early, at The Earlville Opera House.

For those of you who don’t know (and who should mark it down on your calendar for next year), the wonderful opera house sponsors an annual haunted house night, free of charge. Dodie Page, of Black Cat Antiques in Earlville, and opera house executive director Patti Lockwood-Blais, put together a delightfully haunted evening at the opera house every Halloween. Last Saturday I was invited to participate as one of the volunteer ghouls. I couldn’t wait…could…not…wait…and when Saturday afternoon rolled around I was in front of my mirror, globbing on black make-up and fluffing the wonderful ghastly hilarious horrible long black wig that I reserve for such occasions. There were still plastic spiders in the wig from last year, which of course I left in place. I smeared on blood-red lipstick, donned pointed shoes, selected one of the many masks that I keep in my special Halloween trunk, and roared off to Earlville, where I spent several spook-filled hours trying my best to scare the wits out of kids and adults alike.

Dodie and Patti deserve high praise. The historic opera house — complete with skeletal piano players and eerie organ music and graveyard scenes — did not disappoint. I was stationed in “the wedding reception” room, where table displays included nuptial treats like severed hands and rodent hors d’oeuvres.  I drifted among ghostly manikins, freezing when kids and teens and parents arrived, causing them to wonder if I was fake or real, and ultimately reaching out to touch an arm belonging to someone who shrieked in surprise. A few children ran away, wailing and strangely delighted. One young fellow, enjoying the festivities so much, kept going round and round, finally admitting that he’d traveled from lower floor to upper 21 times. Breaking character, I asked him, “WHY are you here again??” He said, “This is fantastic! This is so much fun!! I want to volunteer as an actor next year!!!”

Good for you, kid. And good for Dodie and Patti and all the other adults who showed up in costume. This is exactly what we want, for kids to participate in good clean fun.

How many times, I wonder, have I said that I love a city life? This life, however — this rural life — is so much more rewarding. Putting on a black wig and shuffling off to a place where people work hard to thrill some kids on Halloween. For free. Oh sure, there was a donation box, but that wasn’t really the point. The point was to open doors to a fabulous, historic building that the rest of the year features art and music, a place where people spend weeks in October setting up scary creepy scenes to thrill and delight families, to make memories for children who will look back someday and remember The Earlville Opera House and say, “Wow, that was something really special.”

Both Patti and Dodie called me today and thanked me for showing up. Ladies, it was my pleasure. And please, put me on the list of October 2014.

I’m looking forward to seeing that 21-time kid next year. He got it, like I did 40+ years ago. Halloween isn’t about stealing pumpkins or causing trouble. It’s about good clean (scary) fun. Is that corny? Maybe. Probably. And so what? In my book, corny is a good thing. A fine and wholesome thing. In fact, in these strange days of violence and arguing and destruction, I’ll take take fine and wholesome and corny all day long.

Kudos to The Earlville Opera House, and to all its volunteers. Thank you for taking time away from your regular lives just to give our kids such a good time.

Kathy Yasas, writer of the Squeaky Pen

Samples of mixed media created with paint skins and printer

Samples of mixed media created with paint skins and printer

The Earlville Opera House presents the third of three GOLDEN ARTIST COLORS SERIES WORKSHOPS for fall. These classes are taught with Golden Artist Colors paints and expertise!  Sam Golden started local company in 1980; they now sell their products around the world. Their mission has been “To grow a sustainable company dedicated to creating and sharing the most imaginative and innovative tools of color, line and texture for inspiring those who turn their vision into reality”. Golden continually launches exciting new product lines and is well known for working with artists to produce excellent high quality acrylics and art materials that meet developing needs in the field.

“Discovering Digital Mixed Media” will be on Tuesday and Wednesday, November 5th and November 6th from 5:30 pm to 8 pm.  Artists are now experimenting with inkjet printers directly on paint skins and developing new uses and applications for mixed media that expand the boundaries of fine art and commercial art.  Don’t confine printing your artwork or photographic images onto just commercially available papers and canvases!

This 5-hour class will show you how to print on everything from acrylic paint skins to aluminum foil, and then how to adhere them to paintings or objects using acrylic mediums.  Embellishing with paint and texture over images will also be shown.

The tuition for the workshop is  $55, $50 members includes $10 materials fee – all materials provided for working with paper.

Michael Townsend is an artist and employee of Golden Artist Colors, Inc. He has been with Golden over 20 years, working in the Quality Control, Research & Development, Custom Product Development, and Technical Support Departments. Michael has a BA of Studio Arts from Mansfield University, where he studied printmaking, silk-screening, sculpture and painting.

Michael has experience in mural painting, spraying, marbling, substrate preparation, varnishing and many other artist applications. In his own work he enjoys painting everything from abstracts to landscapes, using everything from paint and brushes, to airbrushes and digital tools. Michael enjoys demonstrating and teaching other artists how to use methods and materials in their own artwork.

To sign up for any of the upcoming workshops, please e-mail info at or call us at 315-691-3550. The Earlville Opera House is located at 18 East Main Street in Earlville.  For more information, visit .

[caption id="attachment_846" align="aligncenter" width="300"]2 The village bird 5424 One bird by himself wasn't so bad...[/caption] [caption id="attachment_847" align="aligncenter" width="300"]3 Making a get away 5425 But then there were two and soon...[/caption] [caption id="attachment_848" align="aligncenter" width="300"]3 the lair 5438 And soon they discovered the perfect hideout in the attic of the Earlville Opera House. There were playbills from bygone eras and old voting ballots from 1934 being used to insulate the ceiling. Some one had stored some roof tar up there too. Possibly for a little tar and feather?[/caption] [caption id="attachment_849" align="aligncenter" width="300"]4 the lair before 5438 A few of the birds got together and saw the possibilities. They set to work.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_852" align="aligncenter" width="300"]5 the lair after DSCN5440 mpse The birds went to town making their lair super cool, putting in a flat screen TV. Then they stole cable from the mayor who lived next door. The EOH attic became the coolest place for the bad birds of Earlville to hang. It might not have been that bad but something smelled funny and there was a lot of noise going on up there.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_853" align="aligncenter" width="300"]2 the opportunity 5422 Thanks to Bruce Ward, the way in is temporarily stopped but how long before these bad birds break in again? The sheet metal has been pecked away. Does anyone know someone who can bend sheet metal to make a patch? You can become the next hero to this tale! (Cape will be provided!)[/caption]

CIRCA creates delicious, original dishes with the freshest local meats, cheeses, and produce. we work with local farmers and regional artisans to create daily specials and a seasonal menu that changes weekly, and our dishes reflect a variety of cooking styles from around the world. at circa, we are committed to working with farmers who use sustainable farming practices and maintain respect for the land and the animals that they raise, and we believe it is our responsibility to povide fresh, natural, and delicious meals in a comfortable atmosphere.

CIRCA creates delicious, original dishes with the freshest local foods.  They work with local farmers and regional artisans to create daily specials and a seasonal menu that changes weekly.

Our Next Eat Out for the ARTS is at the ultra cool and funky CIRCA in Cazenovia to Benefit the EOH

It’s another Tuesday! Add a little spice to your life? Want to meet some friends for supper?
Eat Out for the ARTS on Tueday, October 22nd, at CIRCA!  Anytime between 5:00 – 9:00 p.m.

CIRCA creates delicious, original dishes with the freshest local meats, cheeses, and produce.  They work with local farmers and regional artisans to create daily specials and a seasonal menu that changes weekly, and their dishes reflect a variety of cooking styles from around the world. at Circa. They are committed to working with farmers who use sustainable farming practices and maintain respect for the land and the animals that they raise, and they believe it is their responsibility to provide fresh, natural, and delicious meals in a comfortable atmosphere.

Yummy presentation of the food at Circa!

The food at Circa is beautiful as well as delicious!

To whet your appetite, explore some of the items on CIRCA’s menu.(link)..but chef Alicyn Hart loves to change things daily so there will be more to consider when you arrive! The menu includes pairings with suggested wines. Special menu additions for October! Alicyn Hart will be pairing of local cheeses like Dutch Girl Cheese and 2 Kids Goat Farm with Critz Farm Cider! So join us for adventures in new American cuisine at Circa on Tuesday, October 22!

Because you don’t need a reason to treat yourself to a fabulous dinner!

Because proceeds from this special night will help the Earlville Opera House continue to bring exciting musical performances to the Central New York community.  Your dollars make it possible to show the artwork of amazing artists, to create free programming for kids and teens, and offer classes in the arts.

Because the Opera House is Your House — everything we do, we do for you.

So come join us for dinner on October 22 at the fabulous Circa! 

Circa is at 76 albany street
cazenovia, ny 13035
315.655.8768 …Call if you’d like to make reservations but they are not required. Come anytime between 5:00 – 9:00 p.m.

The view outside Circa...includes the occasional rainbow!

The view outside Circa…includes the occasional rainbow!

Located at the corner of Albany St (aka Rte 20) and Mill St, there is village parking behind the row of brick buildings housing the restaurant on Mill St lot.

Here is a link to maps to help you visualize the village and parking.

Check out their Facebook page: Circa-New American Bistro

CIRCA Adventures in New American Cuisine…ORIGINAL…FRESH…LOCAL!
alicyn hart, circa’s chef, was raised in a small coastal new england town and began learning about the value of local, fresh food at the age of 15, at flanders fish market. alicyn traveled the world extensively developing the unique cooking style that she brings to circa. she has cooked as a sous-chef in an exclusive fly-fishing lodge in the bristol bay area of alaska, in guest houses in the austrian alps, on a private yacht traveling the sea of cortez around mexico, in an irish market eatery, and a tavern at the base of keystone mountain in colorado, among other places. in 2003, alicyn visited family in the cazenovia area and never left. while teaching culinary arts for boces adult education, she met her husband eric. together they opened circa in 2006.
eric woodworth was born and raised in nelson, new york, where his family lived self-sufficiently, growing and raising much of their own food. eric is responsible for all design and renovations and constructed the restaurant’s tables and bar from local reclaimed barn wood. he contributes directly to the dishes served at circa by raising chickens and pigs and managing a half-acre garden of vegetables. eric also works directly with area farmers to procure the meats, cheeses, and vegetables served in circa’s restaurant and market.
The food at Circa includes a great deal of personal care about where it comes from and how it arrives on your plate.  Food and Art combined for a meal that you won't soon forget.

The food at Circa includes a great deal of personal care about where it comes from and how it arrives on your plate. Food and Artistry combine for a meal that you won’t soon forget.

Helping to support the ARTS at the Earlville Opera House!  More Information about the Eat Out for the Arts program: EOH 315-691-3550 or info at

10-26 Altered bloody ghoul reality v2_2210

Just a few of last year’s haunting characters…

Spirits to summon, enchantments to cast, All Hallows Eve is here at last!  Beware…a haunting and magical night awaits you at the Haunted Opera House!  Come join us at the historic 1892 Earlville Opera House on Saturday, October 26th on 18 East Main Street in Earlville.  The haunting begins at 7 pm and lasts until 9 pm.  This free Earlville Awesome House event for kids and families is sponsored by Black Cat Antiques!

Admission is free at any time during the haunting hours but donations are deeply appreciated and will support programs for youth!  Parents, please make sure children are accompanied by an adult at all times.

zombie boy_2191This year you’ll enter the Vampires’ charming home. Our ebony winged flying friends will greet you.  Watch out! They are thirsty for warm blood!  Meet the undertaker in his funeral parlor  – the mourners are a dreadful sight! You’re invited to be a guest at the Ghastly Wedding Reception where the Bride and Groom accompanied by family and friends welcome you to join in their ghoulish feast!  The old theater is dark and eerie so beware of what lurks in the shadows! Some creatures may come out of the graveyard – be warned! Black cats, sharp-taloned ravens and crows are a witch’s faithful minions; will you catch a glimpse of them? The old witch and her friends are waiting for you in her den. You’ll need to pass her if you wish to escape the Haunted Opera House! The witch only gives candy to those who dare to take it from her!  Do you DARE?

We hope to see you when the spirits come a calling, so come if you are feeling brave on this night of enchantment at the Earlville Awesome House!  For more info check or call 315-691-3550 during office hours Tues-Fri, 10-5 and Sat, 12-3.

ghostly 2222Note: For small children under 8, please use your own judgment.  We really don’t want to scare little ones.

EOH events are made possible, in part, with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and through the generosity of EOH members.

The Haunted Opera House is funded, in part, with a grant from the NYS Office of Children and Family Services through the Madison County Youth Bureau.

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