A History of Beacon As It Celebrates Its Centennial in 2013

Beacon’s big birthday: The riverside city turns 100


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beaconBeautiful vista: A view from the ruined powerhouse on Mount Beacon

Photograph courtesy of the Beacon Centennial Committee

Beacon on display

In the 1990s, Scenic Hudson saved Mount Beacon from developers by purchasing the land, and the Mount Beacon Incline Railway Restoration Society was formed to restore the historic railway. Beacon’s centennial exhibition, “Beacon Re-Imagined” — which runs June 1-July 6 in the River Center at Scenic Hudson’s Long Dock Park — showcases both the railway restoration project as well as the plans to develop the Fishkill Creek Greenway and Heritage Trail. Using 3-D animation, archival footage and photos, ambient sounds, group activities, and guest speakers, the exhibit presents the scope and potential significance of the two projects. “The new railway will have a huge positive impact on the community,” says Jeff McHugh, the exhibition coordinator. “A centennial is as much about looking forward as it is about honoring the past, and this exhibition provides a unique opportunity to show the public how the past and future connect.”

In addition, the Howland Cultural Center’s exhibit, “A Celebration of Beacon’s History,” featuring photographs, artifacts, films, and more, continues through June 30.

beacon book

For bookworms

A 170-page coffee table-style book celebrating the centennial is available for $25. A committee headed up by Beacon resident and fashion designer Gwenno James asked members of a number of community groups to submit information about their organizations. “The response was overwhelming,” says James. The book showcases black-and-white historical photographs, contemporary full-color images, and articles written by more than 100 community members.


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