Posted by: David Giacalone | February 14, 2019

the flamingo tradition continues in 2019


Valentine’s Day 2019 has brought another flock (flamboyance) of flamingos to Lawrence Circle in the Schenectady Stockade. Below are a few noctural images taken before midnight on the 13th, and many more taken in daylight with some pretty blue sky and gauzy white clouds on Valentine’s Day 2019.

IMG_0234 Lovers of the Valentine Flamingo tradition would like to dedicate this year’s Flamboyance at Lawrence Circle to our dearly missed, joyful friend Joan Bessarab, with thanks for all the smiles over the decades.

JoanBessarab-Flamingos2009 . . [L] Joan Bessarab heading to Arthur’s Market, Valentine’s Day, 2009.

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. . Flamingo arrival, late on Feb. 13, 2019 . .








. . IMG_0216

. . Valentine’s Day beauty and romance at Lawrence Circle . . 


IMG_0229 . .

Click on any image in this column of square tiles for a full, larger version of the photograph.


IMG_0259 . . IMG_0254


update (7 PM, 14Feb2019): Thanks yet again to Steve Caporizzo of NewsChannel10 and Stormtracker Weather for featuring our flamingos in his weather segment:


Posted by: David Giacalone | February 4, 2019

watching the warm-up [with updates]

Saturday AM Update (Feb. 9, 2019): The Mohawk rose to about 219.9 ft. overnight (220′ being minor flood stage at Schenectady), but is now slowly receding. It barely crested the Riverside Park riverbank in a few places.

IMG_0134 . . Left and below: the Riverside Park overlook at 9 AM, Saturday, Feb. 9, 2019 . . 


Click on a photo in the following column of square tiles for a full, larger version.



 follow-up (Friday, Feb. 8, 2019, 7 PM): A surge in the Mohawk River has been forecasted for this evening. At this time, levels are not expected to reach flood stage along the Schenectady Stockade riverbank. This Slideshow has photos taken between 4 and 5 PM today, near sunset, along the Mohawk and Riverside Park. The only flooding seen was at rear yards on Cucumber Alley, along Binnekill creek.

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. .  original posting, with updates . . 


. . [above]: mouth of the Binnekill [Creek] at the Mohawk River off of Cucumber Alley, with sunset reflected in ice melt [Feb. 4, 2019-

After a late-January deep freeze in Schenectady (and much of the nation), we are entering a few days with temperatures significantly higher than average for early February. And, we may have a few days with light rain along with the above-freezing temperatures. Naturally, there is a concern that melting snow and thinning ice, plus rain, might crack the ice sheet on the Mohawk and start ice jamming and/or flooding.

  • to see current water levels along the Schenectady portion of the Mohawk River, click here: NWS Hydrograph


. . [above] view west from yard of 16 Washington Ave. ..

IMG_0029 . . [L] view from the west end of Riverside Park, looking north toward Scotia. A mysterious almost-rectangular cube of dirty ice can be seen just off the east end of the Isle of the Cayugas. It has been anchored there for quite a few days. Melting may cause it to head downstream soon. 

We’ll be watching the River near the Schenectady Stockade over the next few days, with periodic photo-shoots. The first three pictures above were taken February 4, 2019 near sunset.

2019-02-05meltcollageFebruary 5, 2019 Update: The collage to the Right has images captured this afternoon. [click on it for a larger version] There was a bit more melting, and a lovely day on the Mohawk. Click on any of the images in the square-tile columns below to see the full photograph in a larger version.




  • FloeHenge06Feb2019 Feb. 6, 2019: Temperatures above freezing again and rain are increasing runoff, and even shrinking (or tilting) our mysterious Floe-Henge monolith at the east end of the Isle of the Cayugas [R].
  • IMG_0037-002 February 7, 2019: A lot more melting of the ice cover, on this dull gray day, with the water clear west of the Great Western Gateway Bridge and east of the CXS Trestle. To the left is a close-up detail of the still-shrinking “floe-henge” burg.


Here are few more scenes from February 7, in a tiled mosaic. Click on an image for a larger version.

Posted by: David Giacalone | January 25, 2019

not quite a flood at Riverside Park


At 10:30 AM on Friday (Jan. 25), the Mohawk River had risen to the top of the Overlook flood gauge at N. Ferry Street, see photo above. The Hydro Chart from the National Weather Service continues to predict the River topping off at Freeman’s Bridge about 218 ft., which is about 222 ft at N. Ferry Overlook. However, there may be an ice jam at Freeman’s Bridge, so it is a good thing to stay alert, if you live in the flood-prone area.

  • Evening Update (Jan. 25, 9 PM): According to the Gazette, and the NWS Hydro Chart, the River is no longer rising and is expected to recede overnight. Of course, with ice jamming in spots, some flooding continues to be a threat, even if a small one.
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looking east in Riverside Park from Governor’s Lane

. . Below: yard, 4 Cucumber Alley, along the Binnekill and the Mohawk


Below you will find an array of views from the river end of Cucumber Alley and at Riverside Park along the Mohawk around 10:30 AM. Friday. Click on a square tile for a full, larger version of an image. Scroll over the image for a caption.


img_9948 . . view west from 4 Washington Ave. – with not quite-floating birdhouse

Posted by: David Giacalone | January 21, 2019

our first snow storm lures me outside

img_9876 The Capital Region, including Schenectady and its Stockade neighborhood, had its first snow storm of the winter of 2018-2019 this past weekend (January 19-20). Against the advice of my saner friends and family members, I headed out with my camera and monopod (and long-johns) to capture a few images, with”real feel” temperatures heading toward zero degrees. For most of my snow stroll, the sky was low and gray, and blowing snow limited visibility. Also, I had resolved not to climb over tall snowbanks to make special shots, as previously done in my reckless “youthful” exuberance. Thus, to my eye, despite about 14 inches of new snow, I did not capture images quite as gorgeous as those presented by the Mohawk River and the Stockade in previous winter storms. (Such as the first snowy day in December 2006; and a nighttime snow stroll in 2014.)

Nonetheless, below are a few pictures presented to memorialize the event. (The image above is out my front door, Washington Avenue at Front Street/Cucumber Alley.) At the end of my Snow Sojourn, a bit of blue appeared in the sky as I approached home, as seen here above the Schenectady County Historical Society.



Of course, the bit of sun did little to help the lengthy struggle of my neighbor (above), who was eventually able to urge her Chevy Volt up the scarcely-plowed Cucumber Alley roadway.

You can see a full and larger version of the images in the following mosaic by clicking on an image, and roll over the image to see a caption.



img_9886 . . did Lawrence leave to grab some hot cocoa?

Posted by: David Giacalone | December 30, 2018

Nearly New Year’s Eve


. . above & below: Light and Laser show caps the premiere Nearly New Year’s Eve event at Gateway-Liberty Plaza (Saturday, Dec. 29, 2018) . . 


. . share this post with this shorter URL:; for many daytime photos of Gateway-Liberty Plaza and background information, see .

IMG_9834-001 . . Right: Gateway Plaza designer (and Planning Commission Chair) Mary Moore Wallinger at the Nearly Event with her son; Below: Light-show screen viewed from behind the urban pillar art chosen by Ms. Wallinger for the Plaza . . 


According to this morning’s Sunday Gazette, “Despite frigid winds, the inaugural Nearly New Year’s Eve attracted approximately 200 people to Gateway Park Saturday night.” See “Kids, adults celebrate Nearly New Year in Schenectady: Live music and laser light show draws families and community” (Daily Gazette, by Jason Subik, Dec. 30, 2018). The article adds:

I did not arrive at the event until just before the light show, and so I did not see how busy the Schenectady County Ale Trail tents were. But, to mention a personal pet peeve, I saw no mention on their signs that customers should Drink Responsibly or appoint a Designated Driver.
Here are a few more images from the event. Click on an image in the mosaic for a larger version.
Posted by: David Giacalone | December 24, 2018

wishing peace, joy, tolerance

At home, around the neighborhood, and City (even City Hall), throughout the Nation, and the World: Let’s grant each-other the patience and tolerance that can bring us peace and joy yearlong.



Posted by: David Giacalone | December 16, 2018

one-page 2019 calendars celebrate Stockade & Schenectady


 The “team” here at suns along the Mohawk [image to the right] has again put together a collection of one-page calendars to thank our loyal audience and send Holiday Cheer and best New Year Wishes to our neighbors, kith and kin. Each of the calendar photos was taken in 2018 in the Stockade, Riverside Park or Downtown Schenectady.

8″ x 10″. Click on a picture in this array of thumbnail images to see the full calendar, formatted to be printed 8″ x 10. Then you may download/copy the original jpg. file.



7″ x 5″. Click on either of the two images directly below, or on an image in the tile mosaic below them to see a larger version of a calendar, formatted to be printed 5″ x 7″. Then download/copy the full jpg. file. And, enjoy.

2019Calendar-LADYe  .  .  2019CalendarsTrainFe

. . [L] Bring Home Lady Liberty calendar; [R] New Schenectady Train Station


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  • IMG_8389-001

    2018 outdoor art show

    Preparing to make our calendars was an enjoyable way to relive all the many colorful and neighborly events and moments here in the Stockade this year. Please scan the list of prior postings in our right margin and sample the many ways the Stockade is such a special place to live or visit.

Posted by: David Giacalone | December 2, 2018

a bright Holiday Tree Lighting

Here are images from this evening’s festive Lighting of the Stockade Holiday-Christmas Tree, and the now-traditional Afterglow get-together in the Great Hall of St. George’s Episcopal Church.

  • Warm thanks to the Stockade Association (especially Colleen, Susan, Susan, Susannah, Susie and Carol; plus Banjo Bob);
  • And to the New York State Tree Nursery at Saratoga, which again provided a fine tree. This year’s tree is tall and broad, and makes quite a statement next to the patient Lawrence the Indian.

 . . the Tree arrived from Saratoga on Wednesday, Nov. 28, with great promise, which was fulfilled this evening.

. . above: Bob Lemmerman (with banjo) led the caroling, accompanied by a stalwart guitarist Charlie Schneiderwind, and was joined too briefly by Hainuo [far right] and Concetta

. . see the 2017 Tree Lighting here . .

Afterglow in the Great Hall

. . above: The Strombergs were hosts (and liked my cupcakes!)

IMG_9791-001  . . IMG_9787

. . the Chilton Brothers provided music and song. . and Janice Thompson added her voice, along with Bob, Rev. Matt & Jamie

. . Susannah [L] and Mabel





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 . . 

. . above: David [L] and Colleen

. . Weiwei [L] and Concetta


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