Polly's Picks



At the Woodstock Artists Association and Museum this month: Peter Sis Through the Red Box, an exhibit featuring the Hudson Valley artist’s original illustrations from his children’s book, Tibet Through the Red Door. The book chronicles Sis’s father’s journey to Tibet in the 1950s; Sis senior was one of the first “outsiders” to visit the area and meet the Dalai Lama. His son is a multiple Caldecott Medal winner. u Fri.-Sat. 12-6 p.m., Sun. 12-5 p.m. 28 Tinker St., Woodstock. 845-679-2940.

Yes, Dan Zanes plays music that kids like — but don’t think he’s just a children’s musician. A founding member of the ’80s group the Del Fuegos, Zanes began making family-friendly records in 2000 after the birth of his daughter; he enlisted some of his well-known industry compadres (like Sheryl Crow, Loudon Wainwright III, and Lou Reed) to appear on his early releases. His 2007 CD Catch That Train! picked up the Grammy for best musical album for children; catch him at the Tarrytown Music Hall. June 20 at 1 p.m. Call for tickets. u 13 Main St., Tarrytown. 877-840-0457.

All things acoustic are showcased at the 29th annual Old Songs Festival. This three-day celebration of folk, Celtic, roots, and world music features a laundry list of performers (the Valley’s own Christine Lavin, pictured below, and the Vanaver Caravan will appear) as well as music workshops and classes, a juried craft show, and plenty of food. In a nod to this year’s Quadricentennial observance, musicians from the Netherlands perform an original song cycle that recounts Hudson’s Half Moon odyssey. June 26-28. Call for complete schedule and ticket information. Altamont Fairgrounds, Altamont. 518-765-2815.

The Pirates of Penzance, a rollicking story of swashbucklers, orphans, and the “very model of the modern Major-General” (as the famous lyric proclaims), is one of the most popular of Gilbert and Sullivan’s operas. The Armonk Players’ current production of this timeless classic retains the irreverent wackiness that has endeared it to audiences since its 1879 premiere. June 4-7. Thurs. 7:30 p.m., Fri.-Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 4 p.m. $15, $10 seniors & students. u Whippoorwill Hall. 19 Whippoorwill Rd. E., Armonk. 914-273-0011.

Ever wonder what it’s like to kayak on the Hudson River? Here’s your chance to find out. The Mid-Hudson Chapter of the Adirondack Mountain Club hosts their annual PaddleFest this month. The all-day event offers kayak lessons for both beginners and experienced paddlers, guided trips, a used gear sale, and lots of socializing time with other outdoorsy types along the river’s sandy beachfront. June 20 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. u Plum Point Park, New Windsor. For directions and more info, visit www.midhudsonadk.org/paddlefest.htm.

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