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Where in the Hudson Valley...?
Very few of our readers were asleep at the switch when it came to identifying the “Wooden Wise Guy” in our October issue. Just about all of you quickly deduced that the carved figure represents Rip Van Winkle — the fictional hero of Washington Irving’s tale of the same name — which stands in the village of Catskill. As the story goes, Van Winkle was a farmer of Dutch descent who lived in a tiny village at the base of the Catskill Mountains. Plagued by a nagging wife, he traveled into the hills, had a bit too much to drink, and fell asleep against a not-so-comfortable tree for a quick cat-nap (which lasted about 20 years). Congrats to Freehold’s Don Teator, who was the first reader to correctly identify this wooden mountain man; his prize is already in the mail. For this month’s quiz, turn to the back page — we think it’s sure to leave you stumped.
The statue is of Washington Irving’s legendary character Rip Van Winkle. Van Winkle supposedly fell asleep at the foot of the Catskill Mountains, so it makes perfect sense that Catskill would be where the statue is located.
John E. Whitcomb
Who is it? Rip Van Winkle. Where is it? At the head of Main Street in Catskill. His profile can also be seen while crossing the Hudson River going west, in the mountains. Thanks for a great magazine!
We pass the statue all the time, but never knew the history of it. Thanks for printing this article in your magazine. We are now “wiser.”
Rachel & Dan Wolfield