Nov 24 2020 32 mins 4

Kaatscast is a biweekly podcast delivering history, travel guides, arts & culture, outdoor adventures, sustainability news and local interviews from New York's Catskill mountains and Hudson Valley. Celebrate the Catskills with Kaatscast! Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/kaatscast/support

Emerson's Uses of Great Men
Nov 10 2020 51 mins  
American essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson led the Transcendentalist movement of the mid-19th century, a literary, philosophical and spiritual movement with a belief in humanity's fundamental goodness; and a reverence for self-reliance, non-conformity, and a deep, personal connection to the natural world. And while the title of his essay, "Uses of great Men," may come off as misogynistic, or at least "dated," transcendentalists like Emerson were outspoken advocates of civil rights and social justice. This week, a reading of Emerson's "Uses of Great Men," by Rolland G. Smith. If Rolland Smith was born a century earlier, he would likely seek fellowship in the Transcendental Club, to converse with the likes of Ralph Waldo Emerson, Margaret Fuller, and Henry David Thoreau. A child of the 20th century, however, Rolland gravitated toward broadcast media, where he reported for outlets like WCBS, NBC, and WWOR. He's interviewed U.S. presidents, reported live from the front lines in Vietnam, and served as anchor of the historic "Live Aid" concert to an international audience of 2 billion. His journalistic integrity, contemplative storytelling, and abiding faith in humankind lie in stark contrast to today's media punditry, social media scrolling, and click bait. If Ralph Waldo Emerson was born a century later, he'd probably get his news from Rolland Smith. Here's Rolland to introduce "Uses of Great Men," followed by his narration of the essay, recorded right here in the Catskills. This week's show was made possible by the Emerson Resort & Spa and the 52-mile Catskill Mountains Scenic Byway. --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/kaatscast/support

Cynthia Nikitin on Public Spaces and Resiliency
Aug 18 2020 17 mins  
“People, Places, Possibilities” – A Conversation with Cynthia Nikitin Sustainable Hudson Valley is working to accelerate progress against climate change through programs to scale up the clean energy marketplace and by helping communities plan for more resource-efficient patterns of living and working.  Like everyone in the Hudson Valley, we are confronting four major crises: Covid-19, social injustice, economic recession, and climate change.  SHV is spearheading a large-scale public conversation on responding to the urgency of each crisis, while understanding how they are connected and using that understanding to generate more sophisticated solutions.  It’s an ambitious idea that we are developing with our network of experts, including six Senior Fellows. One of them is Boiceville resident Cynthia Nikitin, a 28-year veteran of the Project for Public Spaces.  She’s managed hundreds of  “placemaking” projects around the world, helping people to design downtowns, waterfronts, campuses and more, in ways that enhance sociability, connectivity and usefulness – for example, by developing residences and workplaces near transit and each other.  Right now, Cynthia is excited about the way that communities and businesses are being forced to re-think how space is used, even expanding restaurant space into parking lots and surrounding neighborhoods for safety.  She thinks this small shift can drive bigger changes in reclaiming excess streetscape, parking lots and under-utilized land for community revitalization and resilience. Thanks to our sponsors: Sustainable Hudson Valley, and the Catskill Mountains Scenic Byway.  Photo by Brian Paccione --- Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/kaatscast/support

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