Switzkill Farm

BERNE — Supporters of the Switzkill Farm feel that the current GOP-backed town board is letting the expansive town-owned property languish and that projects beneficial to the community — from the instruction of school kids to attracting astronomers — have fallen by the wayside.

Berne’s town attorney Javid Afzali informed the town board at its July 22 meeting that the controversial Switzkill Farm property may have been acquired illegally because the 2014 town board did not allow for a permissive referendum following the purchase authorization. Then-supervisor Kevin Crosier tells The Enterprise that no referendum was required.

Switzkill Valley Volunteers

The Switzkill Valley Volunteers, a recently developed charity group that focuses on individuals, has opened up a Little Free Pantry at the Helderberg Lutheran Church in Berne. Donations of nonperishable foods and other resources may be dropped off and picked up at will. Unlike a traditional food pantry, there is no criteria that must be met in order to access the donations. 

Outrage and partisanship may have left their high-water mark in Berne, where dozens of residents attended the latest town board meeting to hammer the new council with questions and comments about the illegal removal of town employees from their positions, among other issues. Many of the residents’ remarks were met with eye rolls from the mostly GOP-backed board who, for the first time in decades, can steam ahead unimpeded by Democrats’ desires. 

HILLTOWNS — Cheyenne Duncan and Sean Durfee were married on Saturday, July 27, 2019, at the Switzkill Farms in Berne in a civil service officiated by James Lemere.

Exploring the stream bed at Switzkill Farm

Richard Ronconi, member, Switzkill Farm Board

Girl Scouts in Troop 5013 planted wildflowers in two community garden plots at Switzkill Farm on May 17. “We have more available for anyone to use,” said Mark Hohengasser who helped organize the event.

Farm equipment was found — rusted and unused — when excavating the site where a Dollar General store is to be built in East Berne. 

A museum on agriculture has been proposed for Switzkill Farm’s “Pheasant House,” a metal building with several sections that could be used not only for a museum but potentially for a wildlife rehabilitator and a 4-H club.

BERNE — Organizers of the Switzkill Farm Harvestfest are seeking local vendors.

The festival will be held at Switzkill Farm in Berne on Saturday, Oct. 13, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. If it rains on saturday, the festival will be held instead the next day, Sunday, Oct. 14.


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