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Fall 2015


New News from Private Realms…Always

We are thankful to all of you who stayed with us this spring and summer! It was our most successful to-date, and we invite our valued guests back for return visits, which includes a 10 percent discount on our standard 3-night rates.

As the extravaganza of color approaches with falling leaves, this time of year brings with it an abundance of pumpkins and a final burst of local produce that is not to be missed. It is Harvest Time!


This current Newsletter is all about what’s happening in our Hudson Valley Region, including Woodstock, of course. There is a wonderful range of events from the Drum Boogie Festival (FREE for the entire family) spearheaded by Grammy Award winner, Gary Kvistad, to The British Antique Car Show and then, the antithesis of antique cars, the American String Quartet at the Maverick Concerts. Add to that the well-known Hudson Valley Garlic Festival AND the highly acclaimed Woodstock Film Festival … you should book for these now! These and many more are all listed below with links for you to review.

Witten Pond has some vacancies for both Lily-of-the-Valley and Witten Barn during mid-September and October. SURPRISE!! Lily-of-the-Valley is still available for Columbus Day (this requires a 3-night stay).


A “must” when visiting Witten Pond is to take a short walk up Moonhaw Road to the bridge and dead end. Beginning at Witten Pond, Moonhaw Road is a single dirt lane unchanged in 100 years! Along the way, you walk in parallel with the Wittenberg Stream, which has stayed as pristine as in the days of the Hudson River School painters and naturalist John Burroughs. Wittenberg Stream’s rushing waters, which you hear from all the homes at Witten Pond, flows down from Wittenberg Mountain en route to New York City’s Ashokan Reservoir. For those who fish and have a New York State License, the Wittenberg Stream has native brook trout. You can see Wittenberg Mountain’s peak from Witten Pond, given it is the third highest vertical climb in the Catskills and a part of the Slide Mountain Wilderness Range.
Now, just watch and listen!

Current, upcoming, and potential guests we hope you will take a look at all of the varied, fabulous events! Visit our Newsletter Page for more event details.

Hope to hear from you soon, or better yet, see you soon!


Lee Anne Morgan

Sept 12, 11:30am-8:00pm
Drum Boogie Festival® is a free, one-day, family-oriented, multi-cultural arts and educational event, celebrating and promoting the many styles of high quality percussion music found throughout the world. The festival strives to keep a balance of entertainment, enlightenment, excitement and equality. All performances will highlight percussion instruments and percussion performers while sometimes including other instrumentalists, dancers and singers.


Marc Black and Warren Berhardt
Sept 12, 8:00pm
Two Woodstock legends.

American String Quartet
Sept 13, 2:00pm
One of the world’s foremost string quartets.
Mendelssohn: Quartet in D Major, Op. 44, No. 1
George Tsontakis: Quartet No. 7.5, “Maverick” — World premiere
Beethoven: Quartet in F Major, Op. 59, No. 1, “Razumovsky”

Sept 12, 8:00pm
Martha Frankel is the executive director of the Woodstock Writers Festival, and the author of the acclaimed memoir, Hats and Eyeglasses. She is the host of the weekly show, Woodstock Writers Radio, on Radio Woodstock 100.1.

But more importantly, she is the daughter of Sylvia Frankel, who insisted that everyone has a story to tell. “It’s all in how you tell it,” Sylvia was fond of saying..In the Frankel home, a good story was more revered than good grades, which tells you so much about Martha’s entire school career.

StorySlams are always a standing-room-only part of the festival, and this partnership with Kris Garnier feels totally organic and fab.

Sept 12: 11:00am-6:00pm
Sept 13: 11:00am -5:00pm

2015 will be the 14th year of the Hudson Valley Wine & Food Fest. This event features wine and spirits tasting from some of the best wineries and distilleries from all across New York State. HVFF is a NY Registered Farm Market, so you can purchase by the bottle to take home!

Sept 13, 9:00am-3:00pm
Join more than 100 British car owners for a smashing display of classic, quirky, and lovable British classics, right in the heart of Woodstock, New York and the Catskill Mountains. Cars will enter the field starting at 8:30 am, and the fun goes on all day. Around 2 pm, they’ll present awards, including People’s Choice and the Longest Distance Traveled.

Sept 18-20
The Woodstock Comedy Festival is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation with a mission: Comedy for a Cause. Each year their net profits will be donated to their charity partners Polaris and Family of Woodstock for the battle against human trafficking and domestic violence. Their 3rd-annual festival is a three-day weekend event (Sept. 18-20) in the little town with a lot to laugh at, with everything from stand-up comedy to sketch comedy, improv to panels, films and more.

hudson-valley-garlic-festival-german-white-pastureHUDSON VALLEY GARLIC FESTIVAL
Sept 26-27
Follow your nose and the signs for the Hudson Valley Garlic Festival through the historic village of Saugerties NY to Cantine Field…

It’s here on the last full weekend in September, the Kiwanis Club and founder Pat Reppert (the The Garlic Goddess) host the 2nd largest Garlic Festival in the country.

100 garlic growers, loads of unique craft vendors, and 4 different stages of live music offer plenty to see, do, and taste at the The Saugerties Garlic Festival!

Never tried roasted garlic chocolate truffles or garlic ice cream? Never knocked back a garlic shooter? Well, here’s your chance.

Yes, you will leave stinking of garlic… but who cares!

Sept 30-Oct 4
The Woodstock Film Festival is an American film festival that was launched in 2000 by filmmakers Meira Blaustein and Laurent Rejto with the goal to bring high quality independent film to the Hudson Valley region. The festival takes place each fall in the towns of Woodstock, Rosendale, Rhinebeck, Saugerties and Kingston, in the height of fall foliage.

The Woodstock Film Festival is a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) organization with a mission to present an annual program and year-round schedule of film, music, and art-related activities that promotes artists, culture, inspired learning, and diversity.

Maria Muldar
October 9, 8:00pm
2014 marks 40 years since Maria Muldaur had a monster, world-wide hit with her career-making song “Midnight at the Oasis”, and she’s made 40 albums since then.

She’ll be singing that signature tune and many others from her 50 year career in “Way Past Midnight,” a multi-media retrospective show she has created to celebrate this milestone.

Oct 23, 24, 25
The Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase is an annual event for the community of acoustic stringed- instrument builders, players, collectors and aficionados, presenting a gathering of the finest handmade acoustic guitars and stringed musical instruments from around the world!



Summer 2015


Great Swimming Holes and So Much To Do!

We at Witten Pond, near Woodstock, New York, are having a great summer. We are almost fully booked, but have a few vacancies left. One of our guests recently found this remarkable swimming hole of pure Catskill Mountain water…fresh, clear, sparkling, and timeless in its look and ‘feel.’ Peekamoose Blue Hole is about 10 or 12 miles from Witten Pond. To get there from Witten Pond, you will travel one of the most bucolic, otherworldly perfect country roads.

Peekamoose Waterhole

Other Hudson Valley Swimming Holes, depending on the direction you’re going and area you’re in, can be found at Visitor Vortex.


Current guests, upcoming guests, and those potential guests we hope will join us, take a look at all of the varied, fabulous events consisting of plays, music, and more!

July 17 through August 9

Bird-On-A-Cliff’s Woodstock Shakespeare Festival is celebrating its 20th year performing free Shakespeare on the theater company’s outdoor Elizabethan stage. This summer’s production is one of The Bard’s most popular comedies, Much Ado About Nothing, in which Beatrice and Benedick, while sparring wits, fall in love. In a colorful change of pace, Bird-On-A-Cliff Theater Company has set this production in the Wild West, complete with hoedowns and six shooters!

woodstock-playhouseWOODSTOCK PLAYHOUSE
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang – July 9 – 19
Originally written for his son, Ian Fleming’s book became the much loved 1968 MGM film ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’. A sensational score by the renowned Sherman Brothers (Richard and Robert).

The Musical Comedy of Murders of 1940 – July 23, 24, 25
An ingenious and wildly comic romp which enjoyed a long and critically hailed run both on and Off-Broadway. Poking antic fun at the more ridiculous aspects of “show biz” and the corny thrillers of Hollywood’s heyday, the play is a non-stop barrage of laughter as those assembled (or at least those who aren’t killed off) untangle the mystery of the “Stage Door Slasher.”

July 25 10am-4:00pm

A great Woodstock tradition that offers something for everyone! Beginning with a children’s parade and Maypole dance, the Fair’s theme is “Pure Fun” all day long! From new attractions in the Children’s area to the wonderful Great Expectations 1st Prize: A Night at the Museum – this Fair will be one for the memory books. Clothing at rummage prices, thousands of books, great fair food, plus beer and wine to quench your thirst: PURE FUN!

July, August & September

Maverick Concerts is the oldest continuous summer chamber music festival in America. The festival was founded in 1916 by Hervey White, and Alexander Platt is the current music director. The mainstay of the series, which runs from the end of June through early September, is to be found in the chamber music concerts performed by distinguished soloists and ensembles on Saturday evenings and Sunday afternoons.

July 25 – August 30, Opening Reception: Saturday, July 25

Three cultural organizations whose antecedents established the Woodstock Art Colony in the early twentieth century – Maverick Concerts, the Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild, and the Woodstock Artists Association and Museum (WAAM) – join in this historic exhibition. Marking the importance of music in Woodstock’s early history, the exhibition particularly celebrates Maverick Concerts, the oldest continuous summer chamber music festival in the United States.

Graham Nash – August 2
Legendary singer-songwriter GRAHAM NASH is a two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee-with Crosby, Stills, and Nash and with the Hollies. He was also inducted into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame twice, as a solo artist and with CSN, and he is a GRAMMY Award winner.

Contra & Catskill Squares & BBQ – July 18
A night of music, dancing and food! Eat, dance, or just listen and enjoy an evening of music under Ashokan’s outdoor pavilion.

The Summer Hoot – August 21-23
Come enjoy a weekend of world-class music on two outdoor stages, plus camping, hiking, jamming, kid’s activities, food and craft vendors, and memories to last a lifetime.

Woodstock and the Hudson Valley offer everything from pure, unadulterated nature, to a variety of activities as well as stopping to take a mid-to-late summer swim, transporting you to another time and place. How perfect is that?

Join us at Witten Pond and partake of the summer fun in our gorgeous Woodstock-Hudson Valley Region of New York State.



Spring 2015

Private Realms

New News from Private Realms


SPRING has arrived finally! The forsythia and daffodils are in bloom and the dogwoods are budding. The ice is finally gone in the Wittenberg Stream and the trout season is open.

You Can Have Your Home in the Country Now! A Special Offer From Witten Pond

So many of our guests would like to have a home in the country for special events, or just getting away from the busyness of their lives. Those of you who have stayed with us at Witten Pond know it is a haven and perfect for a romantic weekend, anniversaries, birthdays, honeymoons, or just luxuriating in nature. So…

Beginning May 2015 through December 31, 2015, perhaps beyond, we are offering a package of a minimum of three, or more, weekends (each 3 nights) of your choice, whether a holiday or not, at a very attractive rate for advance booking. Please contact me,, or call +1-845-542-8640 for details. This offer applies to any of the three Witten Pond homes: Lily-of-the-Valley, Witten Barn, and Gatehouse.

What Else is Happening?

Private Realms updated and launched a new Website to better present the beauty, nature, magic, and experience of our Private Realms Vacation Homes. Please take time to visit our unique homes when you are able:

Witten Pond, with its three elegant homes in nature, Lily-of-the-Valley, Witten Barn, and Gatehouse, enjoyed a great year in 2014 and early 2015. Thank you to all the guests who stayed with us! The fireplaces and woodstoves were stoked and ablaze throughout the fall and winter. So, those who love snowy days and nights in front of the fire, do book ahead for your 2015-2016 Fall and Winter weekends and week-long vacations.


Cimavilla circa 1335, our 14th Century historic stone landmark house in the Swiss-Italian Lake District and Alps, is now available for rent. We offer two independent apartments, each with separate entrance and privacy. They can also be rented together for two couples, or for a large family. And, the main house, Cimavilla Palazzo, is also available. This is a must-see-and-do if you’re planning a trip to Europe as Cimavilla is centrally located for easy access to Switzerland and Italy.

Dolphin House is on an undiscovered island off Florida’s southwest coast, not far from Ft. Myers and Sanibel/Captiva. We rented it for the first time this season and it was a smash hit. We were booked back-to-back and still have guests arriving. Think about booking ahead for this charming 3-bedroom Townhome at Safety Harbor on North Captiva Island for Fall 2015 and Winter 2016.

Upcoming Special Events To Help You Plan

There are so many special events and activities to keep in mind in the Hudson Valley-Catskills Region during Spring and Summer when booking your getaway. All links are on the side bar of this Newsletter. However, there are some annual, well-known fabulous do-not-miss venues nearby we wish to highlight: The Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice; Belleayre Music Festival; Woodstock Film Festival; The Ashokan Center … all to tempt you for Witten Pond.

Farmer’s Markets are beginning to open with the first flower and vegetable offerings of the summer. Do not let Spring’s cooler weather keep you away for Memorial Day. In the unlikely event it turns cold again, Witten Pond has an abundance of firewood to make your stay cozy and warm, while enjoying nature, locally grown food, and a diversity of restaurants. Please check out the sidebar for an abundance of links to many special and ongoing events, which include: music, theater, recreation and natural phenomenon.

Finally, If You’re Seeking to Buy a Home…


Witten Pond is a perfect venue for your house hunting. We had many guests this past year that stayed with us so they could make their forays into looking for a permanent home in our Hudson Valley-Catskills Region. We are centrally located to Woodstock, Phoenicia, Olivebridge, High Falls, and Saugerties as well as further north: Margaretville and Roxbury in Delaware County.

We can’t wait to see our old friends again and to make new ones. And those of you who have met our Gentle Giant resident cat, Willard, we speak for him too! So, please contact us. We are already booking into August!


MAY 20: 3rd Annual Taste of Woodstock
MAY 22-25: Uke Fest at the Ashokan Center
MAY 24: 2015 Bob Dylan Tribute B-Day Celebration Benefit at Bearsville Theater
MAY 28: An Evening with the Bennet Jazz Ensemble at Bearsville Theater
MAY 29: Levon Helms Studios: Amy Helm Friday Nights at The Barn
MAY 30: Levon Helms Studios: Jimmy V’s Billion Dollar Bash
MAY 29-31: OLIVER! performance at the Woodstock Playhouse
MAY 30: Bad Brains: In Studio Recording Session
JUNE 4-7: Mountain Jam – 4 days of music in the majestic Catskill Mountains
JUNE 5: Reelin in the Years- The Music of Steely Dan at Bearsville Theater
JUNE 12: Taste of Country Music Festival at Hunter Mountain
JUNE 13: Ars Choralis at the Maverick
JUNE 20: A Midsummer Night’s Dream – A reading by acting professionals
JUNE 27: Woodstock House Tour
JUNE 18-28: Spring Awakening performance at the Woodstock Playhouse
JUNE 27: NEXUS Percussion at the Maverick
JUNE 28: Shanghai Quartet, Benjamin Hochman at the Maverick
JULY 3: Simone Dinnerstein at the Maverick
JULY 4: Elizabeth Mitchell & Family at the Maverick
JULY 4: Adam Tendler at the Maverick
JULY 5: Frederic Hand, Paula Robison at the Maverick
JULY 11, 18: Jazz at the Maverick
JULY 12: Cypress String Quartet at the Maverick
JULY 19: Cassatt String Quartet at the Maverick
JULY 9-19: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang performance at the Woodstock Playhouse
JUNE 20: A Midsummer Night’s Dream – A reading by acting professionals
JULY 23-25: The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940 at the Woodstock Playhouse
JULY 24: Actors & Writers, An Evening of Short Plays at the Maverick
JULY 25: Steve Gorn, Samarth Nagarkar, Ray Spiegel, Rohan Prabhudesai – Indian Ragas at the Maverick
JULY 26: Latitude 41 at the Maverick
JULY 30-AUG 3: The Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice
JULY 30-AUG 9: Oklahoma! performance at the Woodstock Playhouse
JULY-AUG: Woodstock Shakespeare Festival at the Comeau Property
AUG 1, 15: Jazz at the Maverick
AUG 2: Escher String Quartet at the Maverick
AUG 5: The Aristocrats w/special guests, Travis Larson Band at the Bearsville Theater
AUG 8: Miro Quartet at the Maverick
AUG 9: Danish String Quartet at the Maverick
AUG 13: Belew, Levin, Mastelotto and Friends at Bearsville Theater
AUG 15-16: International Celtic Festival at Hunter Mountain
AUG 16: Trio Solisti at the Maverick
AUG 13-23: Sweeney Todd at the Woodstock Playhouse
AUG 22: Chamber Orchestra Concert at the Maverick
AUG 23: Ariel Quartet with Thomas Storm at the Maverick
AUG 28: Actors & Writers- A Reading of Paddy Chayevsky’s ‘Middle of the Night’ at the Maverick
AUG 28, 29, 30: The Woodstock Magic Festival
AUG 29: Frederic Chiu and Andrew Russo, duo pianists at the Maverick
AUG 30: Borromeo String Quartet at the Maverick
SEPT 5: Happy Traum and Friends at the Maverick
SEPT 6: Dover Quartet at the Maverick
SEPT 12: Marc Black and Warren Bernhardt at the Maverick
SEPT 13: American String Quartet at the Maverick
SEPT 30-OCT 4: Woodstock Film Festival


Opus 40 sculpture park and museum
• Hiking at Kaaterskill Falls, Huckleberry Point, Overlook Mountain
• Swimming at The Millstream, Big Deep and Fawn’s Leap
• Cycling: Equipment and maps at Overlook Mountain Bikes. Scenic rides at Ashokan Reservoir Dam, Cooper Lake
Town Tinker Tube Rental – experience whitewater tubing on the Esopus
Mower’s Saturday Market – An outdoor market celebrating its 37th continuous season

Fall 2014


WELCOME to the Private Realms inaugural Newsletter! Each quarter we plan to provide you with characterful local and regional news, anecdotes, pictures, places to go, things to do…and in this issue, capturing the spirit of Witten Pond and the wondrous, historical Hudson Valley-Woodstock Region.

The Private Realms Team is thrilled. We are entering a beautiful time of year for Witten Pond. You can actually hear leaves fall then float onto the Pond for a brief rest before making their way to the rushing waters of the adjacent Wittenberg Stream.

In autumn, the Hudson Valley-Woodstock region blooms in many ways. Though the waning beauty of our summer gardens arrive, our soft-shouldered Catskill mountain trees explode with colors of rich sienna, bright yellow, deep gold, and brilliant red. Our foliage season rivals anything, anywhere. It is a do not miss! It is not only beauty that abounds. It is also area activities in celebration of the plentiful harvest our region provides. Activities are vast and eclectic, ranging from the famous Woodstock Film Festival in October to the harvest-time-festivals for Pumpkins, Apples, Wines and Cheeses at at Beacon, New Paltz, and Rhinebeck. There is an Oktoberfest and scenic skyride at Hunter Mountain. You can also be in the center of glorious fall foliage at 212 feet above the Hudson River at the Walkway Over the Hudson in Poughkeepsie.

We at Private Realms have been readying for the season and have three getaway houses to rent: Lily-of-the-Valley, Witten Barn, and Witten Gatehouse. All three of our homes are four-season rentals. If you miss the autumnal season, winter at Witten Pond provides a storybook winter-wonderland as you sit cozy and warm in front of a blazing fire with everything you need. If it snows, take a walk and smell the wood-smoke waft through the air; you will hear the ever-present Wittenberg Stream’s rushing waters soothe with a gentle suggestion to take time to contemplate.
The Private Reams Team

The Convergence, ©2013, Lee Anne Morgan
The Convergence, ©2013, Lee Anne Morgan
Lily-of-the-Valley, ©2013, Lee Anne Morgan
Lily-of-the-Valley, ©2013, Lee Anne Morgan
Hudson Valley Autumn, ©2013, Lee Anne Morgan
Hudson Valley Autumn, ©2013, Lee Anne Morgan
Wittenberg Stream, ©2013, Arthur Anderson
Wittenberg Stream, ©2013, Arthur Anderson