"...just a smile away from Whoville with a hint of It's a Wonderful Life."
—Huffington Post
Sinterklaas Send-Off Celebration, Kingston, New York
Sinterklaas Festival Day, Rhinebeck, New York


who makes it happen | sinterklaashundsonvalley.com

It Absolutely takes a village!

Thank you to the 2017 Sinterklaas Donors

If you haven't had a chance to donate yet click on over to the donation page and join this supportive community that Sinterklaas relies on. Then we can add your name here as well.


Thank you to the 2017 Sinterklaas Donors

Current through November 11, 2017

Beyond the Beyond

$5000 +

Robert Duffy

Medical Aesthetics of the Hudson Valley



Infinity and Beyond


Frost Memorial Fund

Rhinebeck Rotary

The Thomas Thompson Trust


Frost Memorial Fund


Rotary Club Supports Sinterklaas




The Universe


Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley

Foster’s Coach House Tavern

Douglas Baz Photography

Sarah Bissonette-Adler Stage Management

Colleen & Mike Bloxham

Cale Communications

ENTA-Education Network for Teachers and Artists

Jeanne Fleming and Wonderworks

JTD Productions

The Klock Foundation

Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union

M. Suzy Morris Costume Design

Northern Dutchess Hospital

Omega Institute

Richard Prouse Stage Scenery

Foster & Tricia Reed

Albert Shahinian Gallery

Renee & Craig Snyder

Stewart’s Shops


Ulster Savings Bank

Illiana Van Meeteran

Williams Lumber

Winter Sun & Summer Moon


The Super Nova

$500 – $999

Arts Mid Hudson

Dal La Magna

The Art of Building

The Beekman Arms

Carolyn Marks Blackwood

Enjoy Rhinebeck

John Lyons & Joanne Gray

Haven Spa

Margaret C. Howe

Key Bank

No Sugar

Paper Trail

Rhinebeck Bank

Rhinebeck Farmer’s Market

Rondout Savings Bank

Florence & A. Robert Rosen Family Foundation

Ruge’s Automotive

Tatiana Serafin

Willow Glen Productions


The Galaxy

$250 – $499

A.L Sitckle Variety Store

The Amsterdam

Aroi Thai Restaurant

Atelier Renee Fine Framing

Back Yard to Table

Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Hudson Valley Properties

Boitson’s LLC

Friends of Kevin Cahill

CH Energy Group, Inc.

Charny & Wheeler

Kate Crow

Liz Mazzarella & Al Decotis

The Forsyth B&B

Mike & Cecily Frazier

The Gallery Inn

Grand Cru Beer & Cheese Market

Vicki L. Haak, CFP

Jennifer & Ali Hammoud

Health Alliance of the Hudson Valley

Heermance Farm sponsored by William Gottlieb Real Estate

Hudson Valley Ceremonies

Hummingbird Jewelers

Brad Keil

(The Galaxy continued)

Robert Long

Doug Baz & Jill Lundquist

Sheila & Greg Lynch

Wendy Bush Lyons, Esq.

Maya Kaimal Fine Indian Foods


The Rev. Richard McKeon & Timmothy Lewis, Messiah Church

No Sugar

Cheryl & Roger Norton

Oblong Books and Music

Olde Rhinebck Inn c 1745

Jamie O’Neil, LCSW-R

Paula Redmond Real Estate, Inc

R&F Handmade Paints

Rhinebeck Architecture and Planning PC

Rhinebeck Bagels

Rhinebeck Motel

Rickert’s Auto Body Inc.

Rondout Savings Bank

Kiki Steele

The Storefront Gallery

Robert Sweeney

The Toranova Family

Louis & Julie Turpin

Linda & Andy Weintraub

Grace Welker

Al & Aida Wilder


The Milky Way

$125 – $249

Aba’s Falafel

Acacia Design Corporation

Bailey Pottery Equipment Corp.

Betsy Jacaruso Gallery

Terrance Boylan

Jennifer Burleigh

Cabinco, LLC

Dennis & Valerie Connors

The Courtyard

DF Craft Construction


Anne Marie Ferrara

Fraleigh & Rakow Insurance

The Gallery@Rhinebeck

Law Office of Edward A. Haas

Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union

Hudson Valley Pottery

Hudson Valley Vintage LLC

Iconic Hair

Kathy Malaga & Steve Jenkins

JSA Financial Group

Keesing–Ostfeld Family

Scott & Laura Kemp

Dacie Kershaw

Christine & Matthew Kurlander

Ramon Lascano

Linda Levine

Liberty Public House

Gretchen & Mark Lytle

Frank Guido’s Little Italy & Mariner’s Harbor

Sally & Mike Mazzarella

The Mezzanine Ltd.

Migliorelli Farm LLC

Montgomery Row

Wm. Oderkirk

Oliver Kita Artisan Chocolate

On the Hill Antiques

Brian & Kimberly Orcutt

Phyllis Palmer

Peter Amendola & Jerry Pagliari

The Palmer–Nathan Family

Susan Pelosi

Periwinkles at Rhinebeck

Georgia Dent and Jeff Perry

Rhinebeck Animal Hospital

Rhinebeck Convenience Stores

Rhinebeck Department Store

Rondout Inn

Martin & Carol Rosenblum


Ryan and Ryan Insurance Brokers

Maggie Salamone

Smoky Rock BBQ

Cricket Lengel & Andrew Stewart

Jay Teske Leather

Twin Ponds Flowers

VanNorstrand & Hoolihan, CPA’s, PC

Vetere Real Estate

Bob Wills Architects

Waddle and Swaddle

Amy Novatt & Ron Whitmont

Zimmer Brothers


Star Clusters

$75 – $124

The Basile–Del Pizzo Family

Gale & Rich Bennek

Nancy & David Boehm

Karen Burke

Ariadne Civin

Art Carlson & Julia Crowley

Jamie Kibel & Michael DaCola

The D’Albertis–Gadsby Family

Kathy Dobson

Linda & Ed Faber

Sarah Hill & Guillermo Fesser

Elaine Colandrea & Erik Kiviat

Ward Mintz

Ed & Patty O’Connor

Susan J. Phillips

Lisa May Quackenbush


Debbie & Hector Rodriguez

Heinz Sauer

Ana Sanjuan & Ben Senterfit

Joanna Hess & Albert Shahinian

Staley Real Estate LLC

Marybeth, Charlie, Maura & Drew Sweeney

The Tourtelot Family

Leopoldo Quarles Von Ufford

Justin Watrel

Linda Woznicki


Be A Star

$20 – $74

Doreen Tignanelli & James Beretta

Charles Buehler

Deborah Duke

Steven G. Fischer

Lawrence Garrick Associates Design and Planning

Susan & Patrick Gausepohl

Grace Gunning

The Kelly Family

Elizabeth Kirchhoff

Roy & Amy Kulick

Patrick & Cindy Mahoney & Family

Jane Mintzer-Hoffman

Mole Mole

Ann McGrath & Steve Mosto

Neville Bean Designs

Gennaro Pasquale, Esq.

Fern Revzin

Don Schneider

Steve Shabot

Laura Shulkind

Dr. & Mrs. Edward T. Sullivan

Illya Szilak

Christina Tsrczyn

Jon Wechsler

Debra Wollens


How you can help

Each year hundreds of people help create this spectacular community-wide event. How can you be part of it?

  • Be a Puppeteer! Volunteer to animate a puppet in the Parade!
  • Be sure to return to our website to get involved with this year's Sinterklaas and learn about other upcoming events!
  • Make a donation so we can keep all the events free!
  • Buy an Illuminated Star to help us raise the funds we need!
  • Share your photographs. Email us.
  • Join our email list, stay in the know!
  • Become a Facebook fan: Rhinebeck and Kingston pages

It truly does take a village to pull off an event like this.

It takes a whole HOST of folks to come together in a beautiful way to make Sinterklaas happen. It includes everyone, those who donated time and money for sure and all those who sat in meetings, answered millions of questions, made extraordinary suggestions, cut a branch, served up tea, and everyone who comes to the event. Sinterklaas forms a close and sweet community as it gathers steam throughout the year. We thank all of you who form this creative community! Here are some who deserve special mention! We thank…

County Count Executive Mark Molinaro, Dutchess County Sheriff Butch Anderson and Kirchhoff Construction for extraordinary support!

Village & Town 
The Village Board, Mayor Heath Tortarella for all you do! Howie Traudt and Scott Cruikshank for true advice and extraordinary help. Sgt. Pete Dunn for his conscientious, caring and good work! And the Rhinebeck Fire Department for inviting us into your home! The Town Board, Elizabeth Spinizia, Supervisor, and the Town Recreation Committee for the Hoedown. The Rhinebeck Chamber of Commerce

Partners The Rhinebeck Rotary and Interact Club for Puppeteers and Parade Marshals. Thank you, Rotarians! We can’t do it without you!

Caped Wonders Keepers of the Flame George and Phebe Banta! Holders of the Flame 2016 The Hewitt Family: Jesse, Bridget and their lineage: The Cruikshanks 2015! The Stickles, 2014

Stamina! Elena Erber who designed ALL our graphics, including this beautiful book!

Endurance: After 9 years: The Madwomen of the Sinterklaas Committee: Endless energy, the extraordinary TEAM: Lila Pague, Pat Sexton, Elena Erber, Lindy Wright, Sarah Bissonnette-Adler, Martha Tobias, Joanna Hess, Tricia Reed, Jill Lundquist, Joanne Gelb, Suzy Morris, Dorna Schroeter, and Nancy Donskoj who kept the fires burning all year long.

Heart & Soul Doug and Jill  — we want you back with us soon.

“WE can end this right now” Lindy over the top hat! ! The Amazing, multi-talented Great Leader of the Crowns and Branches Workshop and wearer of many hats and so much more: the thoughtful and committed, Joanna Hess.

Habitation and a Stage! Richard Prouse, Barry Cohen and Roberto Rossi!

Magic when you need it! The fine Sarah Bissonnette-Adler and her MOM Susan!

Girl with a truck! 
Becky Holt

Our newest sister! 
Nancy Karimi! Welcome to the club!

She never stops dancin’ The indefatigable Martha Tobias!!

Those same old Kids on the Block! Peter Criswell, Matthew Fass and Terrance McCorry.

The Swap Team! Lindy Wright, Jill Lundquist, Mel Dean, Nancy Karimi, Debby Franke Ogg, Diana Devlin, Dorna Schroeter and Joanne Gelb.

Hoot! Hoot!….. Bea Lambert for the fantastic and truly magical OWLS! And Lauree Ostrofsky, our Gorgeous Crescent Moon!

All the helpers at the Crowns and Branches Workshop! Joanna Hess, Coordinator, The Incredible Crowns & Branches assistants: Jeniece Schroeter, Maribeth Feinberg, Karen Hinderstein, Becky Holt, Cait Johnson, Kate Kennedy, Colleen Lalonde, Gretchen Lytle, Linda McAteer, Mary Yankjitis, Joanne Mrstik, Faith Palmer, Carole Schaad & Granddaughters, Tina Stanton, Mia Tsang and Gagana Yaskhi

Bear Up! Thanks to Steven Michael Pague for stepping up to the paws were not put on pause. And his trainers Kate Brehm and Roseanne Fox and Major Ursa! Julia Haines, his accompanist.

Talons! Thanks to the amazing and skilled Laurie Schumacher of Talons! for the beautiful birds who flew to music in the sacred space. And her go-between, Dorna Schroeter and her able assistant, Matthew Rymkiewicz.

Up in the air! It’s a bird! Thanks to the Rhinebeck Farmer’s Market for bringing TALONS! and the amazing Flying Owls to our children!

Birds of a feather: 
To those who swoop in at the end and make it work: The Rhinebeck Rotary and Daytop.

OWL=Wisdom Sally Mazzarella, Howie Traudt, Scott Cruikshank, Jordan Matthews, Lila Pague, and Father Richard McKeon, Nancy Kelly, Louis Turpin, Barbara Kraft, and Robert J. Johnson.

The joy of cooking! 
Colleen Bloxham, yes!!!!

The COO COO CLOCK! Special thanks for Paul O’Connor for the creation of our centerpiece—The Clock! And Jordan Matthews for the soundscape!

The Owlettes!! Leighann Kowalsky Choreographer and the precious Owlettes themselves: Cooper Foraker, Mia Goodwin, Riley Goodwin, Drew Sweeney-Cuyler, Maura Sweeney-Cuyler, Magnolia Kondrat-Wilson and Grace Leedy (big sister Owlette)

Queen for a Lifetime…
Our Queen Bee! Lila Pague

Our Owl Queen of the Night and her companion Mouse Cait Johnson and Terry O’Keefe. You show us we can all 
get together and love one another right now.

Location, Location, Location!! Celebration Spaces: We thank the Rhinebeck Fire Department for their generosity for the Crowns and Branches space! We thank Primrose Hill School and the United Methodist Church for the SWAP! And the Bantas for our Star Party at the Beekman Arms. Betsy Jacaruso Gallery for the Grumpus Hideout! Connie Bathrick and the Courtyard for the Clock! Liberty Public House for our fabulous After Party! And Ruby Star for the bird’s eye views. Phoebe Melley of Foster’s for opening the heart of our Village (the White Corner!) and forging an ephemeral Town Green for all our performers and folks to gather. Our Vaudeville House and Cirkus Tent: DeDe Leiber and Upstate Films.

Our address: We thank Connie Bathrick and the Courtyard for a home for the Coo Coo Clock.

A clean, well lighted space Our greatest gratitude to the United Methodist Church and Pastor Nikki Hutt Edleman for our Celebration Space, Workshop, Sinter Underground and beautiful environs for the Owls and Sweet Music!

Now we can rest Great SPECIAL thanks to Pat D’Antonio and thegallery@rhinebeck for our wonderful Green Room and Window on the world. Thanks to your hospitality, we settled in!

Suzanna Hermanns of Oblong Books for her excellent contribution to the program!

Our Paparazzi 
Doug Baz for his 28 years of wonderful photographs that make it possible for us to tell the story.

Sinterklaas Craft Fair presented by the spirited and joyful Gelbs, David and Joanne, and all the artists, crafts people, bakers and helpers for the Fair! Special thanks to Lindy Wright and 
Dorna Schroeter.

The Wish Ladies Women of Wisdom and Delight.

The Pocket Lady and 
her Pal Liza Jane Norman who created the magnificent costume and Carla Carbone who gave it life!

All those wild Grumpuses! Happy Birthday Wally! 
Mike Bloxham, Wally Carbone , Kurt Fisher, Chris Gilbert, Clifford Hart, Jamyang Lodoe, Robby Long, Bruce Lubman, Harlan Matthews, Terrance McCorry, Steven Pague, Mark Perez, Stephen Robin, John Schmitz, Andy Weintraub, Bob Wills, and Steven Young. And Grumpus Emeritus: Dod Crane, David Gelb, , Richard Prouse, Richard Kopyscianski, Arun Lahiri, Heinz Sauer and Ricky Aldrich. And their illustrious choreographer, Martha Tobias, who tamed and trained the wild beasts!

The hootin’ of the owls! And Super HOOT to the 500 kids in the Chancellor Livingston School who made Owl pictures !

The Wild Women! 
Abby Saxon, the Wildest!

The Ask Me Ladies Dorna Schroeter, Queen! Diana Devlin, Laureen Swanwick, Jill Lundquist, Joanna Hess, Gwen Bardon, Karen Graham, Aida Wilder, Ana SanJuan, Kiki Steele, Mary Burns, Joanne Leffeld, Sarah Olson, Marianne Neifeld, Karil Davidson, Kari Feuer, Jen LaBelle, Cecily Frazier, Marie Dynes, Karil Davidson, Barbara Kahles, Gillian Eames, and Susan Bissonnette.

Bear Beauty for the Bear Beauty Contest. We could not BEAR to lose you! Samuel’s John Traver, keeping up the tradition begun by Sarah Chaneles and Kathy Varadi. In memory of our dear Ira Gutner.

Crowns and Branches! Becky Holt, Sharon Rushton and their courageous crew.

The Book The stellar team who made the Illuminated Book: Nadine Robbins, Molly Ahearn, Grace Gunning, Richard Prouse, Andy Neal and James Gurney!

The Art Teachers at Rhinebeck High School, Cynthia Baer and Kathy Giles and the Art Students for their gorgeous and original paintings.

Snow King, Queen, and Star Child Our Royalty! Emily Houpt, Victor Zelek and Louisa Zelek.

All dressed up! The utterly talented and relentless Suzy Morris creator of the Snow King, Snow Queen, Star Child, the Owlettes, the Owl Queen of the Night and her Mouse, the NEW gorgeous Sinterklaas Robe, those crazy Kukeri and all the rest! And her co-conspirator Bea Lambert.

Holy Holly! Mother Holly! Rebecca Singer and William Eadie and Cait Johnson, Ania Aldrich, Terry O’Keefe.

Staging! The immensely talented Richard Prouse whose staging gives to our airy nothing a local habitation and a name. And Barry Cohen who makes sense of it all. And the Village of Red Hook for the loaner!

He’ll always be the Drone of Distinction David Gelb. We will let him live! And his Noble Queen Joanne Gelb!
Just call him Al 
Al Boutin…Lindy’s wingman.

Travellers (to MFTA) Lindy Wright, Suzy Morris, Joanne and David Gelb

Kingston Crew! Susie Linn, Nancy Donskoj, B.C. Gee, Kevin Godbey, Linda Harrington, Deborah Mills Thackerey, Rob Sweeney, Gloria Waslyn, Ann Loeding, A.S.K., Color Page, Feeney’s Shipyard, Hudson River Maritime Museum, Kingston Library, Old Dutch Church, Savonna’s Trattoria, Ulster County Tourism, Walmart, WDST and the City of Kingston.

The Churches The United Methodist Church, The Church of the Messiah, the Reformed Church of Rhinebeck and the Third Evangelical Lutheran Church — folks filled with love and generosity in their hearts: Pastor Nikki Hutt Edleman, Rev. Richard McKeon Jr., Fr. Luis Perez and Pastor William Ryan Starkweather, and Anna Pavord, Liz Irwin and the every gracious and generous Bonnie Reyero.

Yasha Koah The Jewish Alliance of Northern Dutchess, Rabbi Yael Romer, Kimba Baker and Temple Emanuel for a beautiful and moving Havdalah. And the Dapson Chestney Funeral Home for hosting this meaningful ceremony.

The Living Nativity! The Reformed Church gives it life!

Beekman Arms and it’s legs Brenda Catalano and Gail Haskins who climbed up on the chairs--and the Bantas for keeping the Hearth burning.

Collection agent! Welcome back Johanna Bard!

YUM! All those who donated food for the hundreds of performers and volunteers. Thank you to Colleen Bloxham and Johanna Bard for keeping this army running with good food! Aroi Thai Restaurant, Rhinebeck Bagel, Bread Alone, Bubby’s Burritos, Cinnamon, CJ’s Italian Restorante, Foster’s Coach House Tavern, Gaby’s Café,Grand Cru, Le Petit Bistro, Liberty Public House, Matchbox Café, Maya Kaimal Fine Indian Foods, Osaka Japanese Restaurant, Pete’s Famous Restaurant, Pizzeria Posto, Village Pizza of Rhinebeck, Smoky Rock BBQ, Samuel’s Sweet Shop, Sunflower Natural Foods Market, Terrapin Restaurant, The Rhinecliff, Warren Kitchen & Cutlery.

The Starr Library for its warm welcome to creatures great and small, human and puppet! Steven Cook and the Board of Trustees.

Maskers! And to Nan Jackson at the Starr Library for the Coloring Workshops and Joanne Gelb for putting it all together. Thanks to all who colored the 500 beautiful owl masks for the children!

Re-Sounding Praise! Omega Institute’s Ken Kuter and Skip Backus for letting us hear! And JTD Productions for the same in the venues!

The Real Deal Jonkheer Leopold Quarles von Ufford for giving us authenticity and connecting us to our heritage. And to Mr. Briggs. Love you always.

Our own special Sinterklaas! In Kingston: Henk Dijk who returns from Holland each year to join us! And in Rhinebeck: Scott Cruikshank, local hero!

The Puppeteers Alex Kahn and Sophia Michahelles whose vision and dedication to the work is unmatched anywhere, who hosted the workshop and taught so many in the skills of pageant puppetry and who made that magnificent Horse and the Fox, Crow, Bear, Goose, Turtle, Hummingbird, the Bees…and now the OWLS!

Parade Volunteers All those who animated puppets! Now you are 300 strong!!

And all the artists and performers!

As always to Ania Aldrich and Gigi Alvare for the original work and setting us on the path. And special thanks to Gigi for channeling the Blessing of the Owl. We know it was not easy.

To my son Jordan who is alive and well and very funny and becoming a man.

And especially to our patient, long-standing, and supportive husbands: Al Boutin, Steven Michael Pague, Bernard Greenwald, Peter Muste, David Gelb, Doug Baz, Donald Corrin, Albert Shahinian, Foster Reed and Harlan Matthews who play greater roles than anyone could ever imagine.

Sinterklaas is an ever astonishing achievement and shows what a community can do working and dreaming together.

Thank you again to the greater Rhinebeck community for the privilege of being allowed to do the work.

The world is in a sorry state these days in so many ways, sometimes one wonders how to go on..what is the right thing to do? On Halloween night a friend told me that the Dalai Lama was very recently asked “what can we do to make the world a better place?” He lit up and immediately answered “Festivals! They bring people together in joyous celebration.”

May our Sinterklaas festival serve to bring peace and joy to the world!

—Jeanne Fleming, 
Designer and Coordinator, SPEAKING FOR All of Us at Sinterklaas!