About Duncan

References & Testimonials

September 4, 2014


Filed under: Business,Events,Features,Troy NY — duncan @ 1:40 pm

For Immediate Release


Michael Burns, (518) 248-7430

Night of Improv at Lucas Confectionery Sept. 10

Grilled Cheese, Beer and Laughs at Troy Wine Bar

TROY, N.Y. (9/4/14) — A Troy wine bar will host an evening of improvisational laughs, grilled cheese and beer next Wednesday.

MopCo at Lucas ConfectioneryThe Mop & Bucket Company (MopCo) is the Capital Region’s premiere improv comedy group. On Wednesday, Sept. 10, the group will play at two-act show in the garden patio of Lucas Confectionery.

Audiences can expect an evening of short form improv games and scenes and music based off of suggestions they write down or call out. They will also be able to create Play-Doh figures for a Play-Doh theater segment that works like shadow puppets on a screen. Michael Burns, artistic director of The Mop & Bucket Company describes the skit as “television you won’t get on your cable box.”

Improv has gained mainstream popularity with shows like “Who’s Line Is It Anyway?” but the performance art form is also the most accessible and communal theater, according to Burns.

“We’re co-creating an evening of laughter with our audience,” said Burns. “We’re saying ‘Yes’ to their ideas, and delighting with them with the results of our collaboration.”

MopCo will perform two sets on the garden patio at Lucas Confectionery, on September 10 at 6:30 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. Both unique shows are free, and patrons are welcome to attend one or both sets, but seating is limited and on a first come, first seated basis. The indoor/outdoor space has a retractable glass roof, and connects to the Lucas Confectionery wine bar at 12 Second St. and The Grocery at 207 Broadway. Patrons will be able to order wine, beer and food from either business but are encouraged to arrive early for “Grilled Cheese and Beer Night” at The Grocery, starting at 5 p.m.


Vic Christopher, co-owner of the Lucas Confectionery, The Grocery and the in-progress Tavern Restaurant, said the improv performance is a good fit for the venue, which is constructed using reclaimed materials in an improvisational style.

“Spiritually, improv is a good fit for our space because it’s all about working with what you’ve got and making it up on the fly. That’s pretty much our construction style through the use of reclaimed materials,” said Christopher.

Christopher and his wife Heather LaVine opened Lucas Confectionery at 12 Second St. in November 2012 as a community gathering space featuring rare and unique wines by the glass and bottle; along with craft beer, artisan coffee, cheeses, small plates, confections and desserts. In November 2013, the couple opened The Grocery, in an adjacent building at 207 Broadway. The Grocery is a micro neighborhood grocery shop featuring artisanal cheeses, meats, fresh local produce and draft beer. Wednesday nights at The Grocery feature grilled cheese and beer specials.


In the tradition of Second City, the skilled improvisers of The Mop & Bucket Company create stories, scenes and songs based on audience suggestions. Think “Whose Line is it Anyway?” Because the ideas come from the audience, each show is totally fresh.

MopCo delights audiences every Friday night at the Underground at Proctors in Schenectady. The company also teaches classes on improv for performance, business, writers and educators and for creativity in everyday life.

[Note: This Sept. 18 through Oct. 9, The Mop & Bucket Company will be teaching Improv basics in a weekly Thursday night class at The Arts Center of the Capital Region in Troy. ]

What people are saying about MopCo:

“If you’ve never seen a mop & bucket performance, be assured they’re laugh-to-you-cry funny.” — Kristi L. Gustafson, Times Union

“From its humble beginnings, this troupe has morphed and grown into a top-notch unit capable of all kinds of theatrical gamesmanship, much of their own invention.” — Michael Eck, Albany Times Union

“I have seen improv before and I’m sure you have too, but these actors are ready for prime-time. Have you ever watched a performance so brave that you wanted to shake the performer’s hand or kiss her cheek after the show? That’s how i felt…” — Susan Arbetter, WCNY radio

For information about The Mop & Bucket Company, visit

For information about Lucas Confectionery & The Grocery, visit:


To download high resolution publicity images, visit:


Michael Burns, (518)248-7430,


August 18, 2014


Filed under: Features,News — duncan @ 1:00 am

For Immediate Release

Contact: John Wolcott, 518-465-8930

Researcher Pinpoints Long Lost 1614 Albany Fort

Map Sleuth John Wolcott Reveals Exact Location of Fort Nassau

ALBANY, N.Y. (08/18/14) — A local historian released his findings today, pinpointing the exact location of a 1614 colonial fort in Albany.

“Fort Nassau” is North America’s oldest Dutch trading house, built in 1614 near the present-day Port of Albany. But the precise location of the ruined structure was forgotten over time as the natural and built environment changed during four centuries.

“Fort Nassau is very significant to American, Dutch and Indian history,” said John Wolcott, historic researcher and cartographic sleuth. “But its exact location had been lost over the years. Not only has the geography changed, but the latitude readings provided by early maps have to be adjusted for problems caused by being inland using instruments of the time.”

After pouring over maps and charts spanning the 17th to 21st centuries, Wolcott is confident he has rediscovered the spot where Fort Nassau once stood and that there may be “artifact laden strata and articulated features” left to uncover.

According to Wolcott, the fort was located in what is today the northern end of a side spur of the Kenwood Rail Yard (Port of Albany) close to the present day intersection of Church St. and Broadway. The site is across the road from a small riverfront park and a vacant grassy lot.

Fort Nassau Site Today, Map positioning copyright John Wolcott 2014


The property is owned by Global Companies, a unit of Global Partners, based in Waltham, Mass. This January, the company announced plans to build a 2,600-square-foot facility at the port’s rail yard to heat and transfer crude oil arriving by train.

At the same time, Wolcott announced in a press release that he was working to pinpoint the exact location of the Fort Nassau site in the vicinity of the proposed oil boilers. That news was reported locally, nationally via the Associated Press, and internationally in major Dutch publications including the March 15, 2014 edition of Elsevier Magazine.

Since then, Global Companies has opted for another location for those facilities, Wolcott noted. This month, Wolcott completed his research.


“If we can test the site, and if it’s proven that some serious history can be uncovered, then the property should be acquired by the public or an academic institution so that a careful archaeological excavation can be conducted without a construction deadline,” Wolcott said. “It could be an excellent site for further study as well as a tourist attraction of international multicultural significance.”

Based on a contemporary record when the fort structure had been constructed, Wolcott says the dimensions of Fort Nassau are 58 feet across the quadrangle, surrounded by an 18-foot moat. That poses higher probability of finding something, he said.

Fort Nassau Site Today, Map positioning copyright John Wolcott 2014


Fort Nassau was constructed in late winter or early spring 1614 during a trading expedition for the Amsterdam Van Tweenhysen Company, commanded by Captain Adriaen Block.

The fort was located on “Castle Island,” which has since gone by several other names (on the Hudson River, which was then called the “North River”), and was later buried under silt and earth. Fort Nassau became the focal point for the North American fur trade in the Northeast, where the Dutch and indigenous peoples traded goods for fur. It also became the staging point for expeditions to seek out mineral deposits and other natural resources for exploitation.

After several washouts by the Hudson River spring floods, and a final severe flood in 1617, the Dutch moved on to the mainland and built Fort Orange, which in 1970 was partially excavated before an exit from I-787 was placed on top of it.

“Fort Nassau didn’t turn out to be a permanent settlement, but it was the beginning of it all here in the Northeast,” Wolcott said. “Let’s finally save one of these amazing colonial sites.”

In 1969, Wolcott pinpointed the exact location of Fort Orange using an obscure manuscript map. A year later he was hired as a field worker for the State Historic Trust to help prove his findings were true. They were.

Historical Map: Fort Nassau Albany, N.Y.


A map attributed to Johannes Vingboons, titled “Noort Rivier in Niew Neerlandt,” shows a reddish-orange smudge on the north tip of Castle Island. The Library of Congress dates the map as “1639?” but Wolcott believes the map was probably created in 1626 or 1627. In a more recent book, Shirley Dunn, former curator of Fort Crailo in Rensselaer, noted that the smudge represented the ruins of Fort Nassau.

In the early 17th century, Dutch historical and geographical writer Joannes de Laet provided a description of Fort Nassau’s location with latitude that Wolcott analyzed for problems caused by instruments of that time.

Wolcott next found an 1863 U.S. Coast Survey of the Hudson River that includes a square piece of land in Island Creek that conforms to the dimensions of the fort and to the reports of historic washouts.

Finally, he used a 1910 map with a street pattern to link the 1863 map to existing landmarks today and transferred the location of the fort to a modern satellite image of the site.

“I call that 1910 map my ‘Rosetta map,’” Wolcott said, in reference to the Rosetta Stone that helped scholars crack the mystery of Egyptian hieroglyphics. “I used the Albany and Greenbush ferry slips at the end of the streets as anchors for positioning.”

Fort Nassau Site 1863 Detail, courtesy John Wolcott

1910 chart John Wolcott


This Sept. 20, The New Netherland Institute will host its 37th New Netherland Seminar in the Huxley Theater of the Cultural Education Center in Albany, NY. The program will commemorate the 400th anniversary of the construction of Fort Nassau on Castle Island in the port of Albany. “1614” will feature five speakers who will offer arguments for its probable location on the island.

Wolcott is not among the invited speakers.


Local historian and archaeologist Don Rittner supports Wolcott’s work.

“John Wolcott is very good at reading old maps, old measurements, old triangulations,” said Rittner. “If John tells you something’s in the ground, I’ll put money on it.”

Rittner believes there may have been three forts built on the same island before the Dutch abandoned the project to erect Fort Orange on the mainland in 1624. See: Preserve Fort Nassau, and Fort Nassau 2, and Fort Nassau 3, and………, Times Union blog, Aug. 15, 2014.


John Wolcott has written a 560 word essay regarding his research which may be quoted by reporters or reprinted in full by newspapers, magazines and blogs with attribution.

By John Wolcott
Aug. 17, 2014


For high resolution images of Wolcott’s cartographic findings and positioning of Fort Nassau, visit:

Note 1: Possible photo ops include Wolcott in his study with the original map documents, or traveling to the site of the Fort Nassau ruins.

Note 2: L.F. Tantillo created a speculative history painting of Fort Nassau, however his depiction probably does not reflect how the fort actually appeared. Only a full excavation could show for sure.


John Wolcott, 518-465-8930

Don Rittner, 518-378-9256



Filed under: Author,Features,News — duncan @ 12:32 am

The following is an essay which may be reprinted in newspapers, magazines and blogs with attribution. For an accompanying press release, see: Researcher Pinpoints Long Lost 1614 Albany Fort, (Aug. 18, 2014).

Contact: John Wolcott, 518-465-8930

Pinpointing Fort Nassau 1614 (Albany)

Location of long lost fort, at long last

By John Wolcott

Fort Nassau: the first Dutch trading house built in North America, was constructed on Castle (Westerlo) Island on the Upper Hudson where Albany, N.Y. is. It was but a small redoubt yet deemed the acorn from which sprouted the American Middle States. This trading post lasted only three years and was badly damaged by a spring freshet and abandoned. Eventually even its ruins were silted over and forgotten.

Historical Map: Fort Nassau Albany, N.Y.In 1796, Albany contemplated a plan to acquire patents for water lots and extend South End streets opposite the north end of Castle Island, out into the Hudson River. It was similar, on a smaller scale, to the way Manhattan expanded out into the Hudson and East Rivers. In the course of finally implementing this in the 1840s, dredging was found necessary to adjust the upper end of Castle Island and Island Creek to accommodate the plan.

At some point, as an incidental result of this dredging, the north side of Fort Nassau’s moat was broken into. This in turn, apparently caused a large washout area to the west and south of the fort’s remains. This temporary re-exposure of Fort Nassau was recorded on a survey of the Upper Hudson conducted in 1861 by the U.S. Coast Survey and printed by them in 1863. I have the good fortune of owning one of these scarce charts. By the way of some slightly painstaking intermediate measures, I transferred the fort’s quadrangle from the 1863 printed chart onto a current satellite image. The little orange square on this satellite image is about 60 foot square, which squares with the only contemporary source for the fort’s quadrangle plan. It’s in a text block on Adriaen Block’s “NIEUNEDER LANDT” chart of 1614. This reads: “Fort van Nassauen is binnen de wallen 58 voeten wydt in’t vierkant.” This will I English as: “Nassau’s Fort has within its walls a 58 foot quadrangle.” This is the little “lump” with a sort of wedge or tail below it on the detail enlargement of the 1863 chart. Close to 60 feet English (American) measure would be 58 feet Rynland Measure.


Don Rittner, archaeologist and president of the Onrust Project, suspects two additional Fort Nassau about half a mile south of that which I have pinpointed – these would be opposite the Normans Kill which flows into Island Creek from the west. One spot of Don’s is on the west bank of Castle Island, there. The first spot seems to be indicated on Block’s Nieuneder Landt chart as referenced to above. The second is on a chart of 1616 two years later. So there could be not one but three sites, although only one is now pin pointed and should be tested A.S.A.P.

Why are we, here, met with such seeming anomalies? I can’t really say considering the paucity of contemporary written sources in this case. Strata, features and artifacts can be “read” in many a good site. Once my pinpointed site is archaeologically tested and explored and the other two suspected places searched, perhaps a nagging and persistent local legend might be affirmed or denied. This legend has it that a French Chateaux was built on Castle Island in 1540 and that Fort Nassau was constructed atop the ruins of the Chateaux.

John R. Wolcott
August 2014

Contact: John Wolcott, 518-465-8930

For a full press release regarding these findings, see: Researcher Pinpoints Long Lost 1614 Albany Fort, (Aug. 18, 2014).

Maps of Fort Nassau

Courtesy of John Wolcott

Map: Fort Nassau Site Today, by John Wolcott

To Download Image (3.6 MB), right-click this link: FortNassau-JohnWolcott.jpg

Graphic: Fort Nassau Site Today, based on John Wolcott’s Findings

To Download Image (2.5 MB), right-click this link: FtNassauGoogleEarth.jpg

Caption: An illustration showing location of Fort Nassau site, based on John Wolcott’s findings.

1614 Chart

Caption: This 1614 chart, attributed to attributed to Adriaen Block, positions Fort Nassau at 43 degrees north latitude. The writings of Joannes de Laet also support this: “On the east lies a long broken island, through which several creeks find a passage, forming several islands, extending nearly to the island on which the fort was erected, in latitude 43˚.” John Wolcott analyzed this early latitude for problems caused by instruments of that time to pinpoint the location on later maps and charts.

Map Detail: “Noort Rivier in Niew Neerlandt”

To Download Image (156 KB), right-click this link: FortNassauMap01.jpg [To download the entire map at full resolution, visit:]

Caption: Map by Johannes Vingboons, “Noort Rivier in Niew Neerlandt,” showing location of abandoned Fort Nassau and Fort Orange on the mainland. The Library of Congress dates the map at 1639. John Wolcott believes the map was actually created earlier, probably in 1626. Image courtesy of Don Rittner.

Map: Fort Nassau Site 1863 Detail, courtesy John Wolcott

To Download Image (2.5 MB), right-click this link: USCoastSurvey-Crop-Detail-CourtesyJohnWolcott.jpg [To download full original map (339 MB), USCoastSurvey-Full-CourtesyJohnWolcott.tif

Caption: Detail showing site of Fort Nassau Courtesy of John Wolcott, from: “Preliminary Chart of Hudson River Sheet No. 3 From Poughkeepsie to Troy New York. From a Trigonometrical Survey under the direction of A.D. BACHE Superintendent of the SURVEY OF THE COAST OF THE UNITED STATES. 1863”

1910 Chart (John Wolcott’s “Rosetta Map”)

To Download Image (2.7 MB), right-click this link: 1910Map-Wolcott.jpg

Caption: John Wolcott used Joannes de Laet’s description of the island fort at “43 degrees” to locate it on an 1863 hand drawn copy of a 1614 map attributed to Adriaen Block. He then analyzed this early latitude for problems caused by instruments of that time to pinpoint the location on later maps and charts.

For a press release regarding Wolcott’s findings, see: Researcher Pinpoints Long Lost 1614 Albany Fort, (Aug. 18, 2014).

July 20, 2014


Filed under: #TroyCrazy,Author,Business,Events,Features,News,Troy NY — duncan @ 6:04 pm

For Immediate Release

Contact: Duncan Crary, 518-274-2723

The Legend of Major Duncan Campbell, “Ticonderoga” July 1758

A Spirited Re-Telling of New York’s First World-Famous Ghost Story, 7/24

TROY, N.Y. (7/21/14) — The Scottish spirits will haunt and flow in Brown’s Malt Room this Thursday night.

A Ghost Story With Whisky - Duncan Crary at Brown's Malt Room, July 24, 2014 - 6 p.m.On July 24, at 6 p.m., Troy storyteller Duncan Crary will spin a candle-lit account of the legend of Major Duncan Campbell of the Black Watch, a Scottish highlander who met his eerie fate during the failed British attack on Fort Carillon (Ticonderoga) in upstate New York, July 1758.

According to legend, a ghost foretold of the major’s death many years prior at his home in Inverawe, Scotland.

“Robert Louis Stevenson made the story of Major Duncan Campbell world famous in his 1887 poem, ‘Ticonderoga,’” said Crary. “But it was already well-known in these parts, and in the west of Scotland, for more than a century before that.”

The evening will also feature:

  • Soothing tunes on the Scottish small pipes (what Crary calls “indoor bagpipes”), played by Alex Bartholomew of New Paltz;
  • A free tasting of single malt scotches, by West Highland distiller Jura;
  • Fine Scottish small plates prepared in-house.
  • Menu:

    Scotch Egg – $8

    Roast Cornish Hen with Scottish Black Pudding – $14

    Venison Pasties – $10

    Traditional Scottish Gladloch Sausage – $12

    Smoked Scottish King Salmon – $13

    Bread & Cheese: Scratch made bread with a selection of Windsor Red, Cahill Irish Porter, Cypress Grove Midnight Moon cheeses – $13

    (Sorry, no haggis).

    Admission and Scotch samples are free. The Malt Room opens at 5 p.m. Music will begin at 6 p.m. Crary will tell the story shortly after, when the crowd is ready.

    The Malt Room is located at 425 River Street in downtown Troy (in the basement of Revolution Hall). The entrance is in the rear, immediately north of the Brown’s Brewing Co. taproom deck.

    From the West Highlands to the Adirondacks

    Major Duncan Campbell was a real figure in both Scottish and North American history. Laird of the Scottish House of Inverawe, he served as an officer in the 42nd (Highland) Regiment — a famously fierce military unit in Scotland, known as the dreaded “Black Watch.”

    The Grave of Major Duncan Campbell, Union Cemetery.In 1756, the Black Watch was dispatched to North America, by the British crown, to fight in the French and Indian War. In the spring of 1758, Major Duncan Campbell and the Black Watch marched north from Albany to attack the French-controlled Fort Carillon (later named Fort Ticonderoga) on Lake Champlain.

    There, the battle that ensued on July 8 was the bloodiest and most dramatic of the war, with more than 3,000 total casualties estimated by historians. The Black Watch suffered the heaviest of all military units on either side, but the mounting deaths of their comrades only fueled their fury on the front lines.

    About half of the 1,000 Black Watch soldiers in action that day were killed, and many more were wounded — including Major Duncan Campbell who died 9 days later. He was buried in a relative’s plot at Fort Edward. Later, Campbell’s remains were moved to Union Cemetery between Hudson Falls and Fort Edward, where they are now located in the Jane McCrea lot.

    One year after the battle, the British finally captured Fort Carillon and renamed it “Ticonderoga,” an anglicized Iroquois word meaning “it is at the junction of two waterways.”

    Warning: Spoilers Ahead!

    “No ghost story is more widely known or better authenticated than that of Duncan Campbell of Inverawe,” writes Frederick B. Richards in his circa 1910 publication, “The Black Watch at Ticonderoga and Major Duncan Campbell of Inverawe.”

    The Grave of Major Duncan Campbell, Union Cemetery.The widely circulated legend of Major Duncan Campbell says a desperate man came knocking wildly on the doors of the house of Inverawe one night. He had blood on his hands and kilt, and begged for sanctuary — a sacred oath of protection granted in the Highlands of Scotland.

    Duncan vowed to shelter the man and swore on his dirk, a traditional and ceremonial dagger worn by Highland Scots.

    Soon after, a group of men arrived at Inverawe to inform Duncan Campbell that a highwayman had murdered his cousin, Donald Campbell. The men had last seen the murderer heading that way. But Duncan had already given his word that he would shelter the very same bandit, and so he concealed him from the gang.

    Twice, the ghost of Donald Campbell visited Duncan Campbell, and twice demanded that his death be avenged by his kin. But Duncan kept his oath, and on the third visit the apparition warned him: “Farewell Inverawe. Farewell till we meet again at TICONDEROGA.”

    At the time, neither Duncan nor any highland Scots he consulted had ever heard the strange word. From that day forth, it haunted and perplexed him — “Ticonderoga” — until many years later on the march north from Albany, New York to the French-controlled Fort Carillon. The British were joined during that campaign by their Iroquois — or Haudenosaunee — allies, whose name for that place was tekontaró:ken, which sounded very much like “Ticonderoga.”

    Sure enough, on the eve of battle the ghost of Donald Campbell visited the tent of a terrified Major Duncan Campbell to give one last word that Duncan would soon pay for his betrayal.

    The following day, as the battle raged in North America and the brave Black Watch soldiers were cut down by the French, it is said in Scotland that the clouds over the House of Inverawe took the form of the soldiers and re-enacted the futile assault … until the blow was delivered that would end the life of Major Duncan Campbell.

    “An old sailor friend of mine in Glasgow, Scotland once told me to ‘Never let the facts get in the way of a good story,’” Crary said. “I’ll give a proper history of the old Major and the Black Watch, but I won’t be letting those pesky facts get in the way of this ripping good yarn, either.”

    ** End Spoilers **


    The renowned Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson contracted tuberculosis in the late 19th century and headed to the Adirondacks of New York State to take the cure at the famous Trudeau Institute in Saranac Lake. It’s there he first heard the tale of Major Duncan Campbell from the locals who knew it well. In December of 1887, Stevenson published the tale in Scribner’s Magazine as the poem: “Ticonderoga a Legend of the West Highlands.” It was an instant and global success.

    Illustration of Major Duncan Campbell, Scribner's 1887.“Stevenson made a few mistakes in his account — most notably, he named his character ‘Duncan Cameron,’” said Crary. “Sure, there were Camerons on the battle pitch that day, but this ghostly tale belongs to none other than Duncan Campbell of Inverawe, Major of the Black Watch.”

    This Thursday night, Crary will spin his own version of the tale, building upon Stevenson’s poem, historical accounts and his own family’s contributions. One element Crary will give more prominence to is the role of the Mohawk allies of the British and their special relationship to the Scots Highlanders they fought alongside.

    Crary’s full name is Duncan Campbell Crary. And while Duncan Campbell is one of the most common Scottish names, his parents named him after Major Duncan Campbell in particular. The family’s Scottish ancestors, both Crary and Campbell, settled upstate New York during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries.

    “What is a Scotsman without his word? Aye, but what is a Highlander without his kin and clan to count on?” Crary asked. “This is the predicament our hero found himself in, with no way out.”


    To download high-resolution publicity images, including an event poster, a recent photograph of Major Duncan Campbell’s grave and an image from Stevenson’s 1887 poem in Scribner’s magazine, visit:


    Brown’s basement Malt Room bar is a refined space offering 3 cask conditioned ales from its copper top bar as well as nearly 40 single malt scotches, 20 small batch bourbons and a variety of well crafted proper cocktails. A menu of light tapas changes weekly. Located beneath Brown’s Revolution Hall, the Malt Room is open Wednesday through Saturday from 5 pm until close.

    For information, visit:


    Storyteller Duncan Campbell Crary, pictured at Brown's Malt Room

    Duncan Crary is an author, storyteller, podcaster and events organizer in Troy, New York. He wandered the empty nesses of Scotland, alone, when his worldview was still forming. His website is:


    Duncan Crary, (518) 274-2723,
    Gregg Stacy, (518) 698-8330,

    enjoy mactroy. symbol


July 8, 2014


Filed under: Business,Features,News,Troy NY — duncan @ 2:52 pm

For Immediate Release

Contact: Annmarie Lanesey,

“Rebate Hero” Website Helps Shoppers Track and Redeem $ Billions

Software Co. Brings Rebates into the Internet Age with New Web-Based Platform

TROY, N.Y. (07/8/14) — Rebates offer deep discounts to shoppers, but $500 million rebate dollars go unredeemed annually., Troy, NY software, the first website of its kind, helps consumers take full advantage of the billions in rebates offered by retailers and manufacturers each year. The site allows visitors to search the largest collection of rebate forms on the web in seconds and can even help shoppers save money after they’ve already made a purchase.

“Rebates usually offer much bigger savings than coupons, but it’s more difficult to redeem those savings because they require more steps. A lot of people forget to send in the paperwork,” said Annmarie Lanesey, founder of “We’re making rebates almost as easy as coupons.”

The online rebate clearinghouse features a powerful search function that allows shoppers to search for everyday and big-ticket, brand name items from a broad range of retailers and manufacturers. It includes convenient tracking tools that send email reminders for rebate deadlines, to make sure consumers never forget to submit their rebate and remember to include all the required documentation.

Where possible, consolidates the necessary paperwork or points the user to an online submission process (when available) to minimize the effort needed to redeem the rebate. can be accessed from desktop, tablet, or mobile devices, and will be releasing a native iOS and Android app very soon.

“People are already used to searching online for coupons,” said Lanesey. “But until, rebates hadn’t caught up with the Internet age. We’re doing for rebates what the web did for coupons.”

The company also uses Twitter, facebook and email to alert users of special rebate deals, sometimes “free-with-rebate” items. currently has more than 10,000 rebates in their system.

Retailers and manufacturers can sign on as partners with to feed their rebates to users.


For more statistics on rebates, see:

How Mail-In Rebates Rip You Off
By Bobbi Dempsey, Investopedia

Rebate Madness – How to Avoid the Rebate Trap
By Stephanie Moore, Consumer Affairs

ABOUT REBATE HERO is a product of Turbo Penny, LLC, based in Troy, N.Y. The web-based platform was designed for by Greane Tree Technology, also based in Troy, N.Y.

Lanesey is both co-founder and president of Greane Tree Technology and Turbo Penny, LLC. When Greane Tree hired new software developers requiring training, Lanesey said it made sense to hire them to work on the project.

Lanesey said she got the idea to create an online rebate tool during the recession in 2008 as a public service for those struggling to make ends meet financially. But her work at Greane Tree took priority and so the project remained on the backburner.

When Greane Tree hired new software developers who required training, she realized it would be an ideal project to train them to code in Ruby on Rails. So she hired her own company to build the project.

“I needed to train my new staff members at Greane Tree on a real project, and I always wanted to complete,” Lanesey said. “I always hire the best software developers to work at Greane Tree, so it made sense to hire Greane Tree to develop”


To download high resolution images of the logo, a screenshot and other related images, visit:

Contact: Annmarie Lanesey,


July 7, 2014


Filed under: Business,News,Troy NY — duncan @ 4:09 pm

For Immediate Release


Duncan Crary, 518-274-2723

Daisy Baker’s Will Not Re-Open in Former Troy Location

A Message from Former Restaurant Management

TROY, N.Y. (07/07/14) — The management of Daisy Baker’s said Monday the beloved downtown Troy restaurant will not be reopening to celebrate its 40th anniversary this year. As of Friday, the business has moved out of its 33 Second Street building.

Daisy Baker's, Troy“We regretfully announce that we will not be reopening,” said Jared Horton, managing partner of Daisy Baker’s, in a prepared statement. “We have been unable to reach an agreement with the building’s new owner, Bonacio Construction.”

In the early morning hours of Dec. 19, 2013, Daisy Baker’s was forced to close after a broken pipe above the kitchen caused a devastating loss. Horton had hoped to reopen quickly, but the building was in foreclosure at the time, as its then-owner Sandy Horowitz was undergoing a prolonged bankruptcy. Credit union SEFCU then purchased the four-story Romanesque building at 33 Second St. at auction with intent to find a developer capable of preserve its historic value.

In May, Sonny Bonacio was the winning bidder for the building.

Horton, who does not wish to be interviewed by the media, prepared the following statement for the press:


“More than six months after a burst water pipe caused significant damage to our kitchen, and after watching the building change ownership twice, we regretfully announce that we will not be reopening Daisy Baker’s at its historic home at 33 Second Street, in downtown Troy.

“My business partner and I have been unable to reach an agreement with the building’s new owner, Bonacio Construction. There were some restrictions in the proposed lease that we felt would not be sustainable for our business over the long term.

“While Bonacio proposed helping us with the kitchen repairs, the rent increase combined with restrictions to our hours of operation were too much to overcome. The Bonacio team tried their best to help us reopen, but we simply could not offer them the type of establishment that they are looking for.

“I know better than anyone what this business is capable of, and it would not be prudent of me to put this business, my partner, and our employees in a position where I had doubts of the long term success.

“I thank all of our loyal patrons, for their continued support, and our employees, for all of the hard work that gave us over the years. I also thank our insurance agent, company, and adjuster, for their help through this difficult time.

“Ultimately, it was the lack of action by building ownership/management at the time of the Dec. 19 2013 flood that put us in this position, not the current building ownership. It’s a shame that Daisy’s won’t be open for it’s 40 year anniversary this year. Daisy Baker’s opened in 1974 and we had a quite a celebration planned.”

Jared Horton, Managing Partner
Daisy Baker’s
July 7, 2014

Horton’s business partner, Bruce Fleshman added the following remarks:

“It was an unfortunate set of circumstances that lead to Daisy’s closing,” Fleshman said. “Business was good. It was the building’s legal woes that put us in this position. We had nobody to turn to when our flood occurred. I am grateful for the opportunity to have been part of this for the past three years, and am grateful to all of the patrons who supported us.”


On Monday Dec. 23, 2013, the Troy community rallied at a fundraiser to support the Daisy Baker’s staff left out-of-work by the forced closure of the restaurant.

Troy booster Duncan Crary helped publicize the shoulder-to-shoulder event held at Bacchus Wood Fired, a restaurant located beneath Daisy Baker’s at 33 Second Street.

“We have a lot of wonderful gathering spots in this city, but Daisy Baker’s was the queen of ‘Third Places’ in Troy,” said Crary. “It was a true ‘living room,’ where Trojans of all walks would gather to interchange their news of the day. And I know I’m not alone when I say, I will miss that camaraderie most of all.”

For a press release, issued by Crary, regarding the December fundraiser for the staff of Daisy Baker’s, click here.


Daisy Baker’s, is located on the first floor of 33 Second Street. It was in operation from 1974 until 1988. In 1999, Jim Scully purchased 33 Second Street and reopened a fully restored and improved Daisy Baker’s in 2000. Jared Horton, tended bar at Daisy’s for nine years before taking over operations from Scully as Managing Partner.

The New York Times praised the grand old barroom at Daisy Baker’s in a 2008 Day Trip Piece titled “Where the Finest Antiques Can’t be Bought.”


Horton says he purchased the rights to the name “Daisy Baker’s,” the restaurant phone number and website from Scully.

Though he has no immediate plans, Horton said he would consider the possibility of re-opening Daisy Baker’s elsewhere if a space suitable to the restaurant’s brand, style and needs became available.

For information, visit: or


Duncan Crary, 518-274-2723,


June 26, 2014


Filed under: Business,Events,Features,News,Troy NY — duncan @ 10:01 am

For Immediate Release

Contact: Jeffrey Buell, 518-944-8674 (cell)


Sequence Development to Announce Restaurant Tenant, Holds Open House

TROY, N.Y. (6/26/14) — Sequence Development is holding an open house this Friday at 4 p.m. at 9 First Street as the project is nearing completion. As part of the celebration it will announce its first floor tenant — a nationally acclaimed outfit opening its first restaurant in an historic rehabbed building in downtown Troy.

9 First Street, Sequence DevelopmentSequence will host a brief ceremony to announce the first floor restaurant tenant for its historic renovation. It will also provide tours of the reconstruction efforts on the upper floors that began last fall. The future restaurant tenant will be present for the ceremony and will serve food during Troy Night Out.

“This redevelopment has been a labor of love for all of us involved,” said Jeffrey Buell, 34, founder of Sequence Development. “There is no finality associated with a building like this, our completion is just the next chapter. It has stood proud for 150 years, and we are thrilled to be opening the doors Friday night to an important piece of Troy’s history.”

Following a brief ceremony, all four floors of 9 First Street will be open for a “sneak peak” viewing and walkthrough.


Built in 1864 as Wm. Young’s bookstore and bindery, the four-story, 6,100 square-foot brownstone and cast iron front building is located immediately south of the Rice Building. It has been vacant since 1996 when Code Enforcement shuttered it due to unsafe conditions.

Last year Sequence Development agreed to purchase it for $10,000 from the Troy Local Development Corporation (TLDC), a community improvement nonprofit that provides financial assistance for construction, acquisition and rehabilitation projects in the city. Sequence has become the first company to complete a project with the LDC using a License to Develop Agreement where the building is not sold until proof of financing.

“Everyone that looked at this building prior to our purchase deemed it too far gone or not worth the effort,” said Buell. “We rejected that concept and want to challenge people to think differently. The urban cores of our cities are what grew this country. It is history that cannot be replaced. Just because a building is covered in dust, falling apart at the seams, and collapsed upon itself doesn’t mean it can’t be saved. It just requires hard work, creative thinking, and a willingness to go the extra mile.”

GSD Contracting, the construction arm of Sequence Development, is responsible for the reconstruction efforts. The restaurant space, which features exposed brick walls, wooden beams and an original 39-foot structural steel arch that was uncovered by work crews while gutting the building.

The third and fourth floors include a pair of 1350 square-foot, two story duplex apartments featuring: exposed brick and beams; quartz countertops; recessed lighting; washer and dryer; energy efficient forced hot air with central air cooling; and impressive views looking east and west. Both apartments are pre-leased with one tenant moving in next week and the other in August. Rent is $1750 per month. The second floor is a loft-style flex space that is also pre-leased and expected to be occupied by August.

The upper floors feature 18 custom-built, eight-foot-tall wooden windows, exposed brick and ductwork, tin ceilings, and custom trim.

“These are not cookie cutter spaces, we really paid attention to every detail and worked to enhance the historic features we uncovered,” said Elizabeth Young Jojo, Chief Operating Officer of Sequence Development. “These are larger units than what’s typically being built in Troy.”


Fit-up costs for the restaurant will be $250,000. When completed, Sequence will have invested more than $600,000 total in construction and rehab.

“The addition of 9 First Street to a growing list of successfully rehabilitated buildings in the heart of downtown is wonderful news for the City of Troy,” said Mayor Lou Rosamilia. “Not only is the project helping the City to meet the demands for new retail and residential units, but it is doing so in a manner that preserves Troy’s historic charm and encourages even more redevelopment in the area.”

Sequence Development is also in the process of rehabbing a block of three buildings across from 9 First Street on the corner of First and State streets (16 First Street). Those units are available for pre-lease now and can be viewed during Friday’s open house and will be available for rent this fall. The total project cost is $2.4 million.

Other Sequence Development projects include: 1 Monument Square (construction of two new mixed-use buildings); new student housing developments for Hudson Valley Community College in Troy, and the redevelopment of 160,000 square feet of space for Clarkson University in Potsdam, N.Y. The company expects to announce two other efforts in the coming weeks.

“We are positioning ourselves as a young development company that takes on historic rehabs, mixed use developments,” said Young. “We love small cities.”


Sequence Development was formed in 2012 as a commercial real estate development firm with an atypical perspective. Sequence approaches each project it undertakes with a focus that is not on the single building, but on its place in the larger community. With a primary emphasis on historic rehabilitations and mixed-use residential buildings, Sequence understands the importance of even a small project in positive place making and its potential impact on larger economic development initiatives.

Sequence Development is headed by Jeff Buell, CEO, and Elizabeth Young Jojo, who joined the company in May as chief operating officer.

For information, call 518-336-0145 or visit:


Photographers may make arrangements to photograph 9 First Street in advance of Friday’s Sneak Preview Open House and Ceremony.

To download historic images of 9 First Street, visit:


Contact: Jeffrey Buell, 518-944-8674 (cell)


June 19, 2014


Filed under: Events,Features,Troy NY — duncan @ 3:57 pm

For Immediate Release

Contact: Michael Ciaravella 518-217-8282


Package Deal: Summer Shakespeare in a Very Urban Park, Splatter Song Show Oct.

TROY, N.Y. (6/19/14) — Troy Civic Theatre Co. will round out its 2014 season with Shakespeare’s “Much Ado About Nothing,” premiering in Barker Park this July 11, and the regional premiere of “Evil Dead, The Musical” this October.

Evil Dead, The MusicalWhile free performances of “Shakespeare in the Park” are a longstanding tradition in cities around the globe, the Troy company’s choice to play “Much Ado…” in a pocket park at the intersection of two busy streets — Third and State — is a bold one. Though it is surrounded on three sides by churches and fronted by a high-end apartment building, the park has been the subject of controversy in recent years, with city officials removing the benches to discourage problem behavior.

“Bringing culture right into this otherwise overlooked little park, right in the middle of a very urban setting fits with our purpose,” said Troy Civic Theatre President Joel Lord. “Last year, we had a rehearsal in that park and all sorts of people from all walks of life stopped by asking what we were doing.”

The one-night only Barker Park performance will occur this Friday, July 11 at 7:30 p.m. Admission is made free with support from Troy Savings Bank Charitable Foundation.

“Much Ado…” will then play July 12, 18, and 19 at 7:30 p.m., and July 13 at 2:00 p.m. in the Italian Community Center, located 1450 5th Ave, in Troy, N.Y. Tickets are $15 General Admission and $13 for Students and Seniors.


Troy Civic Theatre is offering a 10 percent discount for those who purchase tickets now for “Much Ado…” and the October/November performances of “Evil Dead, The Musical.”

Based on the 1983 cult classic horror movie and its sequels, starring Bruce Campbell, “Evil Dead, The Musical” has been called “The Next Rocky Horror show” by critics. True to the movies, the horror-comedy includes geysers of stage blood.

“It’s campy and gory, so the first few rows get hit with flying gore,” said Lord. “The original movies were coming out when I was in college, so I have a soft spot in my heart for this, even though I don’t really like zombies.”

The Troy theater company secured the regional premiere for this production, which first appeared in Toronto. The group expects to attract fans – including “Zombie Squad” groups and college students — from as far away as Syracuse, New York City and Boston.

“Cult musicals have cult followings,” Lord said. “So it’s worth purchasing these tickets now before we sell out.”

The show was chosen by Troy Civic Theatre after director Erin Giacomino submitted it for consideration. Though the shift from Shakespeare to a horror-comedy musical may seem incongruous at first, Lord says that theater companies like to mix up their offerings with classics, pop culture hits and experimental works.

“I think everybody in theater wants to do something different, that you wouldn’t see otherwise,” Lord said.

Performance dates for “Evil Dead, the Musical” are scheduled for Oct. 24, 25, 31, Nov. 1, 2, 7, 8, and 9.


Tickets are available for purchase the night of performances and in advance online here:

Tickets for the discount package are available for purchase here:


The Troy Civic Theatre Co. officially formed in October 2011. In March this year, the organization received its official 501(c)3 status as a public charity. All donations are tax-deductible.

Troy Civic’s budget is about $25,000 per year. The organization aims to own its own theater space somewhere in the next five to ten years.

According to research by Lord, Troy Civic is one among 72 community theater groups in the great Capital Region — excluding college theater — from Hudson to Glens Falls and from to Utica, to Pittsfield.


For publicity images pertaining to Troy Civic Theatre’s productions, visit:

For information about Troy Civic Theatre, visit:

For information about “Evil Dead, The Musical,” visit:

Contact: Michael Ciaravella 518-217-8282


June 18, 2014


Filed under: Business,Events,Features,News — duncan @ 10:42 pm

For Immediate Release

Contact: Mary Darcy

July Tourism Adventure Recreates Hudson River Steamboat Travel

Tickets on Sale: Albany to Hudson NY by Train and Riverboat

ALBANY, N.Y. (6/19/14) — This summer, an online magazine is bringing back the experience of traveling between the cities of Albany and Hudson by train and riverboat.

Rail, River, Hudson - AOA Summer Tour 2014Tickets are now on sale for “Rail, River, Hudson!” a special one-day, car-free tourism adventure on Saturday, July 12, that will bring more than 100 passengers from Albany to Hudson, N.Y. by Amtrak® with a return trip up the Hudson River on the Dutch Apple II riverboat.

All Over Albany is hosting the event.

“Hudson is fun. Trains and boats are fun. Leaving your car behind to explore a new city up close is fun,” said Mary Darcy, co-publisher of All Over Albany. “We want people to have a good time, but we also want to shift the paradigm a bit, to show people what types of local travel and tourism are possible without a car. Until the 1940s, the Hudson River was bustling with ‘high speed’ passenger steamboats. We’re hoping to show people in our region what that was like.”

Once in Hudson, the group will be free to explore Hudson on foot, to shop, browse, take in the architecture, and have lunch before catching the boat for a return trip. Trip goers will receive a “Hudson Passport” filled with discounts at shops and restaurants throughout downtown. The passport will be valid from July 12 through Aug. 12, to encourage return trips to Hudson to claim discounts.


Rail, River, Hudson!
AOA Summer Tour
Saturday, July 12, 2014
10:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.
Cost: $60

10:30 a.m. – Meet in Downtown Albany on Broadway at the footbridge to the Corning Preserve/Jennings Landing (parking is available in the city garage and costs $5 all-day, not included in ticket price)

10:35 a.m. – CDTA Shuttle to Albany-Rensselaer Rail Station

11:00 a.m. – Amtrak® train to Hudson.

Noon – Arrive in Hudson, receive “Hudson Passport”

4: 00 p.m. – Gather at Etsy’s awesome building just off Warren Street (a former cannonball factory) for drinks, snacks, and a craft. (Trip goers receive a “swag bag” full of goodies).

6: 00 p.m. – Meet at the Hudson riverfront for a tasting of Nine Pin Cider.

6:30 p.m. – Board the Dutch Apple II for a sunset cruise home to Albany, includes light dinner.

10:30 p.m. – Arrive in downtown Albany by riverboat and de-board at pedestrian bridge to the parking garage.

+ More swag and surprises to be announced.

Cost: Tickets are $60 per person and include all travel costs, a light dinner on the boat, a complimentary Nine Pin Cider sample, the party at Etsy and a “Hudson Passport” book of discounts for food and shopping in Hudson. Passengers can pack lunch or use the passport for a discount at a variety of Hudson eateries. Parking is available through the City of Albany for an additional $5.

Purchase tickets online here:

Tickets went on sale Thursday, June 12. As of Wednesday, more than 60 out of 100 tickets have sold. For information, contact: Mary Darcy

Note: This is a rain or shine event. Tickets are non-refundable. Passengers are strongly encouraged to wear walking shoes. Most of the shopping and restaurants are about a mile from the train station and it’s all walking. The return cruise is about 3 hours long, depending on wind and tide.


Steamboats provided regular passenger service to and from Albany starting with Robert Fulton’s first steamboat voyage in 1807 and lasting until 1948. Some area residents still remember riding the Albany steamboats in their youth.

Rail, River, Hudson - AOA Summer Tour 2014Though the Dutch Apple is not powered by steam, this event will recreate the 19th and early 20th century experience of the “Hudson River Day Line” steamboat travel. And while Amtrak® provides regular service between Albany and New York City, making stops along the way, many Capital Region residents don’t often consider travel by rail when visiting neighboring river communities, said author Duncan Crary who is helping All Over Albany coordinate the event.

“My whole life, I’ve heard people express their wish to restore passenger rail and riverboat travel to the Capital Region,” said Crary, 35. “This event is a ‘proof of concept’ that it can be done, even now without high speed water taxis and light rail in place.”

In 2009, Crary organized a similarly themed event that brought commuters to and from work, between Albany and Troy, also on the Dutch Apple II riverboat.

“Sure, it’s convenient to zip around inside a car. But it’s also liberating to leave the car behind,” Crary said. “There’s nothing, to me, quite as special as traveling from city to city by riverboat or train. Our world seems larger, and yet more connected that way. And you realize that the journey from Point A to Point B can — and should — be rewarding.”

For a detailed account by Donald Eberle, vice chair of the Hudson Valley Chapter of the Steamship Historical Society of America, of the sights and stops encountered along the historic “Hudson River Day Line,” visit:


Sponsors for “Rail, River, Hudson!” include: Dutch Apple Cruise lines; Amtrak®; CDTA: The Capital District Transportation Authority; Nine Pin Cider Works; The Lofts at Harmony Mills (Cohoes); and The Downtown Albany Business Improvement District and Helsinki Hudson.


Etsy, Harvest Spirits, Honest Weight Co-op


Merchants participating in the Hudson Passport include:

Red Dot, Cafe Le Perche, Le Gamin, Truck Pizza, Taste of India, Tortillaville, Olde Hudson Grocery, Hudson Wine Merchants, Verdigris Tea/The Chocolate Bar, Vasilow Chocolate, The Spotty Dog Books and Ale and John Doe Records

Note: Merchants interested in participating in the Hudson Passport can contact:


All Over Albany (AOA) is an online cultural magazine covering New York’s Greater Capital Region. It was founded in 2008 by journalists Mary Darcy and Greg Dahlmann.

For the past three summers, AOA has hosted sell-out “quirky culture” tours, including the 2012 “The Troy > Albany AOA Aqua Duck tour” and the 2013 “Bad Boys, Broads and Bootleggers Tour.”

For information, visit:


Members of the media who wish to cover the July 12 “Rail, River, Hudson!” can reserve space on the train and riverboat by contacting Mary Darcy. Note: These additional, complimentary tickets are reserved for working media only and are not available to the general public. Publicity images for advance coverage are also available upon request.


For publicity images, visit:


Mary Darcy


June 3, 2014


Filed under: Business,Events,Features,Troy NY — duncan @ 10:03 am

For Immediate Release

Contact: Gladys Hirsch (518) 461-6813

Troy’s Enchanté Exhibits Paintings by French Lovers

Opening Friday, June 13 at 6 p.m., Artists Travel From France to Troy

TROY, N.Y. (6/3/14) — A Troy tea house and gallery will exhibit a series of enchanting paintings by French lovers this June.

L'Un n' empêche pas l'Autre“L’Un n’ empêche pas l’Autre” (One does not exclude the Other) runs from June 13 through Aug. 31 at the Way Back Gallery in Enchanté Tea House, located at 169 River Street in downtown Troy. The exhibit features the collaborative paintings of Delphine Cossais and Mika, two very different professional painters in love. The couple will travel from their home in Nantes, France to attend the opening in Troy this June 13 at 6 p.m.

A native of France herself, gallery owner and curator Gladys Hirsch has been collecting works by Cossais, her friend, for many years.

“First, when she told me she was painting with her boyfriend I thought ‘How is this going to work?’ Because they have such different styles,” Hirsch said. “She’s very feminine, classic beauty. He’s very primitive — bright colors, thick features. He has an almost a tribal style.”

But the couple was committed to painting together, in spite of their seemingly incongruous artistic sensibilities. So they they put their canvases back to back, and set parameters to work within: a limited palate of colors, words and objects. The resulting paintings complimented each other so well, they evolved to painting together on the same canvas. Though they set out with an agreed upon theme in mind, such as a song lyric, each artist would contribute their own interpretation to that theme with feelings, sounds and colors. And the results are stunning: colorful, playful, intriguing.

“This show is so unique — if you talk to any artists working together it’s so hard because you come from such a different place and in your head you have so many ideas, but there’s the other you have to make room for,” Hirsch said. “There’s a certain artistic ego. You have to compromise and it’s hard to compromise in art and still get your artistic vision across.”

Somehow Cossais and Mika manage to make room for each other artistically, in a true celebration of their love story, Hirsch said.


Delphine Cossais, 42, was born in Paris, France. The world she creates through painting is extremely feminine and full of intricate patterns, rich texture, subtle hues and dreamy girls in poetic settings. Her imaginary characters have captivating expressions, intense glances, yet always soft and tender, reflecting the soft-hearted painter that she is. Her website is:

Mika, 40, was born in Pas-de-Calais, France. He first trained himself drawing landscapes and portraits. The world he creates through his art is inspired by both punk music and French poetry. His work is spontaneous and naive. In the course of his experimentations, as a self-taught artist, Mika confirms his style playing with shapes to build his characters and combining vivid colors to give them cheerfulness and spirit to his everyday life scene. He relishes mixing colors and shapes in a fantastically unbridled production full of energy.


The Way Back Gallery and Enchanté Tea House are located at 169 River Street, a rehabbed 19th century historic warehouse in downtown Troy. Hours are: Friday nights 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and by appointment or chance.

The gallery is dedicated to one artist at a time, with rotating exhibitions every two months. The front of the house is a boutique, featuring more artworks and tea. Enchante offers its own line of 12 blends of tea, crafted exclusively by a tea master in Massachusetts.

“This is an art gallery where you can drink tea,” said Hirsch. “I have 12 blends of tea and that is the height of my ambition. I don’t want to try to compete with any restaurant or tea place in Troy. But if you want to have a cup of tea with me and talk about art, OK I’m here.”

Hirsch said she usually only books artists she knows and has a relationship with, because that allows her to speak knowledgeably about their art when they’re not present.

“People are very interested in the narrative behind the artwork, anecdotes. They feel more connected to the piece that way,” Hirsch said. “I don’t think I can sell art if I don’t know the artist. So if you’d like to show your work in this space, come here, hang out with me and we can become friends. Then I can sell you.”

Enchanté and the Way Back Gallery are also host to the monthly “Between The Lines” open mic poetry night on the second Friday of each month (except for gallery openings).

Though the charming gallery and tea house have been open for several years, Hirsch said it’s remained one of the best kept secrets in downtown Troy because of its limited hours and location. But that’s all about to change.

“I used to say I’m the last post on the street, because most people just didn’t seem to walk past State Street,” Hirsch said. “But it’s very exciting to have all this business opening across the street at River Street Lofts.”


Hirsch owns 169 River Street with her husband Robert Hirsch. The 10,000 square-foot building is for sale for and includes a street level storefront space, two basement spaces, a 2,000 square foot loft and a duplex, all overlooking the Hudson River. For the listing and images, visit:

“As much as I enjoy doing this, the building is for sale,” Hirsch said. “I can always find another space in this city to run the gallery.”

Hirsch lives with her husband and two children, age 5 and 7, on First Street. They moved to Troy in 2004 and are self-described “Troy lovers.”


For high resolution images of artwork by Delphine Coassis and Mika, the Enchante/Way Back Gallery and of 169 River Street, visit:


For information about Enchante and the Way Back Gallery, visit: or

Contact: Gladys Hirsch (518) 461-6813