These Are the 9 Best Things to Do in the Valley This May

A suburban wilderness comes alive in IMAX. Plus, see thousands of tulips in Albany, and enjoy cupcakes at Gardiner's 10th annual festival.


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The Indigo Girls perform in Kingston

Indigo Girls courtesy of Ulster Performing Arts Center

 

A Ray of Indigo Girls

This Grammy Award–winning folk and rock music duo have entertained their audiences for over thirty years. Elementary school friends Amy Ray and Emily Saliers  started their band in high school and forged their own way in the music business with such songs as “Letters to Eve,” “Cannonball,” and “Let it be Me.” Selling more than 14 million records, they are the only duo with top 40 titles on the Billboard 200 in the ’80s, ’90s, ’00s and ’10s. May 19, $48+. Ulster Performing Arts Center, 601 Broadway, Kingston, 845.339.6088; www.upac.org

 

Shredded Junk Mail Art

SHREDDED JUNK MAIL ART PROVIDED BY ROCKLAND CENTER FOR THE ARTS

Rockland Center for the Arts presents Quotidian Metamorphosis by Jaynie Crimmins. The artist creates beautiful art from recycled materials such as junk mail and bills. Her manipulation of these materials obscures their messages to reflect the form and function of fragile marine ecosystems, elevating the ordinary into extraordinary. Through May 25, Rockland Center for the Arts, 27 S. Greenbush Rd, West Nyack, 845.358.0877; www.rocklandartcenter.org

 

Backyard Wilderness

BACKYARD WILDERNESS PHOTO BY ANDREW YOUNG

The beauty of the great outdoors is all around us as shown in the charming new IMAX® film, Backyard Wilderness, which was filmed in and around the Westchester home of Academy Award-nominated filmmakers Susan Todd and Andrew Young. The beauty of a suburban wilderness is captured in rare moments by hidden cameras mounted inside dens, nests, along forest floors, and pond bottoms, revealing marvels of nature unavailable to the human eye. The film encourages people to put down their electronic devices and appreciate the magic outside their door. Playing daily through Winter 2019, $24.95 adults, $22.95 seniors, $17.95 children. Maritime Aquarium, 10 N. Water St, Norwalk, 203.852.0700; www.maritimeaquarium.org

 

Celebrating Mom

PHOTO COURTESY OF PS 21

In observance of Mother’s Day weekend, Erma Bombeck: At Wit’s End, a staged reading with Nancy Rothman honors motherhood with side-splitting laughs. This one-woman play by Alison and Margaret Engel is a tribute to the columnist and humorist who lovingly satirized the plight of the suburban housewife from the 1960s to the 1980s in her widely syndicated column and best-selling books. One of Columbia County’s favorite comic actresses, Nancy Rothman, brings Bombeck’s humor home for modern audiences. May 1213, $20. PS 21- Performance Spaces for the 21st Century, 2980 Route 66, Chatham, 518.392.6121; www.ps21chatham.org 

 

Albany Celebrates its Dutch Heritage with Tulips

TULIP FESTIVAL PHOTO COURTESY OF DISCOVER ALBANY

The 70th Annual Albany Tulip Festival pays tribute to Albany’s rich Dutch heritage, immersing the city in the symbolic flower of the Netherlands. It begins with a traditional “street scrubbing” on Friday at noon on State and Lodge Streets. It was common in Holland to scrub the stoops and the streets, ensuring they were spotless for the Tulip Queen and her court prior to the celebration. Highlights include 100,000 tulips, live music, food, arts & craft vendors, Kidzone activities, the Royal Tulip Ball, and a sidewalk chalk art competition, making this a family-friendly event. May 12–13, Washington Park, 1 New Scotland Ave, Albany, 518.434.5411; www.albany.com/things-to-do/tulip-festival

 

A Rockin’ Weekend in East Durham

FLY DAY MUSIC FESTIVAL PHOTO BY MATT URBAN

The Fly Day Music Festival hosts more than 18 bands playing funk, rock, world, and folk non-stop all weekend on indoor and outdoor stages. Great food and a beer truck with late-night dancing round out the weekend. For children there’s a merry-go-round, forts, geodesic climbing dome, pirate ship, a petting zoo, and a bouncy house, with babysitting services and camping facilities available.  May 1820, $75 weekend pass, children under 12 free. Blackthorne Resort, 348 Sunside Rd, East Durham, 518.634.2541; www.flydaymusicfestival.com

 

Cupcake Confections in Gardiner! 

The 10th Annual Gardiner Cupcake Festival attracts thousands of people each year and boasts unique flavors and designs. The day is also filled with live music, a 5K race, children’s activities, cupcake awards, and a cupcake-eating competition (of course). May 19, $5 adults, children under 6 free. Wright’s Farm, 699 Route 208, Gardiner, 845.255.5300; www.gardinercupcakefestival.com

 

Honoring our Military

ARMED FORCES PHOTO COURTESY OF STAFF SGT. CHRISSY CLARK

The West Point Concert Band – the Army’s oldest active-duty band — will present its annual Armed Forces Day Concert at Eisenhower Hall Theatre as it celebrates its bicentennial this year. The band was originally established in 1817, tracing its lineage to fifers and drummers who were part of the Continental Army at the time of the American Revolution. Today, the band continues to inspire and motivate the next generation of leaders, serving as musical ambassadors for the Army. May 20, free. Eisenhower Hall Theatre, 655 Pitcher Rd, West Point, 845.938.4159; www.ikehall.com

 

“What’s New, Pussycat?!”

TOM JONES PHOTO PROVIDED BY BARDAVON

Appearing this year at the Bardavon’s 2018 Gala is Tom Jones, whose 50-year career includes  top 40 hits including “It’s Not Unusual,” “Kiss,” “Delilah,” and “What’s New, Pussycat?” He’s continually re-inventing himself with new music — and his latest album, blending rhythm, blues, and soul, entitled Praise & Blame, has received rave reviews. A post-show cocktail party follows at the Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel. May 1, $225+. Bardavon, 35 Market St, Poughkeepsie, 845.473.2072; www.bardavon.org

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