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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Beacon Bits -- Heart-and-Soul

One day last summer, while on Main Street in the vicinity of Global Home and Theo Ganz Studio, I saw a police officer checking out a license plate on a parked car with its door open and a dog lapping up water from  bowl placed by the side of the car by two women shopkeepers.  The officer had been called to the scene by the concerned women who noticed the dog in the car with the windows practically closed on a hot and sultry summer day.  The dog was being rescued from a potential tragedy; the shopkeepers' proactive response had been rewarded by the arrival of the officer and they were relieved as the officer pursued tracking down the owner of the car through a handheld device searching the Internet.  The outcome was whether or not a summons would be issued but the process was the kindheartedness of sensitive and compassionate bystanders who called upon this 'officer of the peace' who responded as you would hope for any local hero.
This is one of the precious heart-and-soul moments of the last year in Beacon.  When I recalled it recently. I thought I'd point out a few more instances where heart-and-soul moments exist along Main Street.
o     Have you ever noticed John's Shoe Repair? you may know it by the clutter and five-and-dime appearance of its large windows across the street from M&T Bank.  When you walk in the door you are transported back to the smell, sight and sound of the glue, sewing machine and rows of gently used shoes waiting to be repaired or retrieved--a remnant of childhood for some of us. I had the pleasure of meeting John and his wife, who travel to Beacon daily from Queens, when I brought a leather pocketbook into the shop in need of a secure strap.  Ten dollars and two days later, a totally wearable sack was back in my possession to my delight and for fond memories being stirred as much as the repair of my purse.
o     Did you notice the arrival of two storefront businesses last summer -- Roosevelt Vet on the Hudson and Orange Pediatrics? Things are really looking up for Beacon when the town pays attention to defenseless children and animals.  (We already know Beacon has ongoing outreach on Main Street for the indigent and addicted with the presence of the Salvation Army and the Lexington Treatment Center.) I recently had the chance to pay a pre-interview visit to Roosevelt Vet on the Hudson and spoke with Emilia, one of the staff, followed by an appointment for my new kitty, Thea, with Dr. Tamara McArdle, after several other
occasions for contact, including a crisis call when adopting Thea at the DCSPCA after being told she had a "cold." Dr. McArdle couldn't have been more understanding as she offered guidance and reassurance to tide me over until Thea could be poked and prodded and

probed thoroughly enough to determine that she's a keeper. Roosevelt Vet on the Hudson now participates in the DCSPCA initial examination program, but whether you're newly adopting a cat or dog or not, I'd say that you can trust your pet care to these newcomers who are professional, courteous and compassionate. Pay them a visit and see for yourself.
o     Did you ever wonder about all the activity that can be seen through the windows of the Yanarella Dance Studio located between Dance Bag and All You Knead off the corner of North Chestnut on Main? I heard there was actually a car dealership in that location years ago, but more recently it has been home for many of the 55 years that this Beacon-owned dance studio has seen kids grow up and become the teachers to their peers' children and even grandchildren. If you were curious enough or received an invitation, you may have even purchased a ticket to one of the two performances held at the Beacon High School in mid-November. If you went, you would see an age range from pre-school to retired (from 3 to 75), all sizes and shapes, and a healthy diversity of ethnicity, religion and race -- a true

equal opportunity venue where the philosophy is that everyone can dance! They can -- and for those who may want to start for the first time - registration was just held for the new classes that start in December and culminate in next November's recital, so there is still time to join in the fun. If you don't feel you have the courage to reveal your inner  dancer, at least remember to buy a ticket next year to support this terpsichorean, community-minded happening that puts all of Beacon on stage.  Kudos to the teachers and Angela, the owner, and especially for the energy of the high school age girls who burned thousands of calories across two days and a dozen performances ranging from hip hop to contemporary, ballet, tap and jazz.  What amazing girl power!
o     And how about our local 93 year old hero, Pete Seeger?  Need I say more.  Just look and listen for yourself. 
Some food for thought:  Reflecting on the day-to-day things we take for granted may reveal that there's more than meets the eye.  And when you do encounter some heart-and-soul in Beacon, whether by chance or by design, you will know that it is truly is a blessed and wonderful life in our town.

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