Chatham Area Business and Arts Blog

Design work starts on Chatham-area trail expansion

September 1, 2023 |

A key step in the expansion of a rail trail in Columbia County has been taken.

The Harlem Valley Rail Trail Association said work has started toward creating a shovel-ready construction plan for a new section of the trail that will link the village of Philmont to the town of Ghent and Chatham village.

The construction-ready documents are being designed by MKM Landscape Architecture of New York under contract to the association, the nonprofit community group that helps oversee the expansion and maintenance of the trail. MKM has designed 2.5 miles of earlier extensions of the trail.

Read the entire article.

Columbia County Fair runs August 30-September 4

Six days of fun for the whole family with nightly grandstand entertainment including demolition derby, monster tractors, rodeo, live music, volunteer firefighting parade, daily animal shows and much more! The fair also features 4-H animal competitions, traditional and inventive fair food, midway rides, racing pigs, a petting zoo, and more.

Visit the website.

PS21 2023 Season Preview

July 14, 2023 | WAMC

In June, PS21 launched its 2023 season with the 10th anniversary edition of The NEXT Festival of Emerging Artists. The season continues with more than fifty unique events, featuring a constellation of celebrated and emerging dancers and choreographers, musicians and singers, actors, directors, and international street artists.

Joe Donahue interviews Executive and Artistic Director of PS21 Elena Siyanko about the new season.

Listen to the entire interview.

Art Omi announces plans for a new campus that will realize pavilions and other small built structures

June 14, 2023 |

Art Omi the sculpture and architecture park in Ghent, New York stages works from more than 2,000 artists and architects, including Steven Holl and Peter Eisenman, across its sprawling 120 acres. Following a record capital project funding announcement from the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) the sculpture park slash residency program slash arts education center has announced the development of a new nonprofit arts center called the Art Omi Pavilions that will be located in Chatham, New York—just a 10 minute car ride away from its existing campus.

Read the entire article.

The Great Chatham Bake-Off 

Bake-Off Contest rules and regulations

There are two categories for judging- one for kids (under 16) and one for adults. You do not need to be a Chatham resident.

  • You must be an amateur (home baker).
  • There will be awards for the following categories (with each age group)-
    • Cakes and Cupcakes
    • Pies
    • Cookies
    • Other
  • You may sign up in advance – and if you do, we will remind you as the event approaches. Is it not mandatory that you sign up in advance, but submissions must be brought to the tent on July 8th by 12:00 noon. Judging will happen at 12:15pm and winners will be announced at 2:00pm. Submission must be labeled with your full name and phone number.
  • Baked goods must have at least 5 servings, so that the judges can each taste the entry.
  • Contestants are to drop off their entries between 11:00-11:30am at Berkshire Bank, 52 Main Street.
  • Entries will be based on taste, appearance, and consistency. There will be 1st place awardsfor each category and also a “fan favorite” where the community votes based on appearance.
Register for the Great Chatham Bake-Off

Pie Eating Contest

Pie-eating contest rules and regulations

Saturday, July 8
Begins at noon

To be held in front of Main Street Goodness, 20 Main Street.

There will be two contests – one for kids up to age 16 and one for adults 17 and older.

Please sign up with your name, email, and age group. Delicious pies will be provided by our own Pieconic, and please note that flavors may not be determined until day of, so if you have any allergies or intolerances, please keep that in mind. This contest is messy, so please wear clothes that you can get pie on!

The contest will be to see who can finish their pie first, without using their hands (which will be tied behind your back).

Register for the Pie Eating Contest

Chatham’s Summerfest is Back and Better Than Ever

On Saturday, July 8th, Chatham welcomes back Summerfest, a fun summer festival for all ages on the village’s charming Main Street. Presented by Metzwood Insurance, this year’s festival runs from 11:00-4:00 and boasts live music, an incredible list of vendors, and lots of activities.


Summerfest’s two main stages are located at either end of the festival- one at Chatham Brewery at 59 Main Street (hosting Rich Hallenbeck’s new band, The Landing Party from 1:00-3:00) and the other at Yanni’s Restaurant at 29 Hudson Avenue (hosting Joe Adee and The Lugnuts from 1:00-4:00). In addition, The Garage at Chatham, an arts series here in the village will bring a first-class strings performance to the festival.


A pie-eating contest (one for adults and one for the under-16 set), sponsored by Chatham’s own Pieconic, promises to be lots of messy fun, and the village invites all anyone and everyone (of all levels and ages) to show off their baking skills and compete for the blue ribbon in The Great Chatham Bake-Off.

Entertainment for Kids

There will lots of entertainment for the kids- miniature horses from the High & Mighty Therapeutic Riding Center, a strolling magician, tie-dying at Off the Rails, children’s games from the 1800’s and a scavenger hunt, courtesy of the Columbia County Historical Society, a prize wheel with the Chatham Area Girl Scouts, and stage action class and theater games from Zoe Wohlfeld of The Rooted Voyagers. The historic Crandell Theater will have two free events for all ages- the movie Annie will be shown at 1:00pm and the Columbia County Youth Theater will put on a free performance of Could You Hug a Cactus, a musical for all ages, at the Crandell at 11:00am. And Summerfest wouldn’t be complete without a fire engine for the young kids to check out.

Come hungry, because the local restaurants Bimi’s Cheese Shop, Chatham Brewery, Napoli Pizza and Cucina (who will be serving pizza on their patio), Chatham Grill (who will have a margarita tent outside), and Fiesta Café, will be open during the festival. Or stay and have drinks or dinner in the village afterwards, at Blue Plate, People’s Pub, or the newly opened Bimi’s Canteen & Bar. And it wouldn’t be a festival without “fair food”, so we’ll have plenty of food trucks, including mini doughnuts from Adirondack Kettle Corn, the Chuckwagon, Pixie Floss Cotton Candy, and The Hungry Traveler.

Please note: Attendees wishing to join in the pie-eating contest or The Great Chatham Bake Off, please sign up in advance.

SummerFest Vendor Application is now online

Chatham’s annual SummerFest event will take place on Saturday, July 8, 2023. Main Street will be closed to vehicle traffic, making it a true small-town festival. Highlights included food, sales and entertainment.

Vendor Fee is $100 for a 12×12 space.

Deadline for Applications is June 1st/First Come First Serve if there are any spots left after June 1st the vendor fee will be $125.  We will have limited spots, all will be on Main Street.


We are unable to offer any electricity at this event.

General Guidelines

  1. The event will be held on July 8, 2023 from 11:00am-4:00pm. All booth space is located outdoors and vendors should be prepared to bring tents/canopies with weights in case of inclement weather. Set up time will be 8:30am-10:30 with all vehicles off the street by 10:30am. You will be contacted prior to the event with your vendor and parking locations.
  2. There is a no rain date and no refunds given in case of bad weather.
  3. Vendors are responsible for their own tents, tables, chairs, generators and for cleaning up their booth area.
  4. Excess inventory must be kept out of view and booth area kept neat, clean and orderly.
  5. This is a first come/first serve event and the spaces are limited, the Summerfest Committee reserves the right to refuse any vendor space at the event, as well as prohibit the sale of any item/items for any reason whatsoever.
  6. All vendors must remain open till the end of the event at 4:00pm. All vehicles must be off the street by 5:00pm.

Food Service

Food vendors will be required to provide thier own trash receptacles, maintain their cleanliness and remove the waste from the vent. You are required to have the necessary licensing required by the State of New York and Columbia County.

If you should have any questions regarding licensing you may contact: Department of Agriculture and Markets (518)457-8835 and/or Coulumbia County Department of Health (518)828-3358.