A good time was had by all!

Red Hook Town Supervisor Sue Crane (right) joins Bicentennial Volunteer Sue Mora at the Committee’s Hardscrabble Day booth, in front of the Village Building.

To the delight of hundreds of people lining South and North Broadway, two huge, beautiful Belgian draft horses “clopped, clopped” up Broadway, pulling the Red Hook 2012 Bicentennial Celebration’s big red Dutch barn float at the head of the annual Hardscrabble Day.

Next year’s big Bicentennial birthday bash was off to a great start.

Clipping lightly along next was the most elegant surrey-with-the-fringe-on-top Red Hook has seen since the Tin Lizzie began to displace Old Dobbin a century ago. Then came: the kids — lots of them; the cars — some old, some small, some new and blue; and the fire trucks – red and big, bigger than barns!

There were quite a few yarns, too, spun by more than a dozen people for “Hooked on Red Hook,” the Historical Society’s Bicentennial oral history project. Averaging about five minutes each, the interviews will be posted and archived on this website under ‘Red Hook Speaks.” Monthly two-hour interview sessions are planned at the Elmendorph Inn through next Hardscrabble Day, when the Bicentennial concludes.

“’Hooked on Red Hook’ is a wonderful living history window,” says Claudine Klose, Historical Society president. “Looking at us, hearing us talk about Red Hook, future generations will see that our hopes and dreams are not unlike theirs, and take heart.“

Thanks to our dedicated volunteers, led by Bicentennial Committee chairperson Loretta Campagna, the Bicentennial made a significant contribution to this year’s Hardscrabble Day. The barn float, created by Larry Thetford and Frank Campagna, was marvelous. The festive Bicentennial tables, where the new 2012 Red Hook Bicentennial calendar and Commemorative Key Chain (and secret bottle-opener!) were hot items, were irresistible.

The Historical Society’s Archives Room received a steady stream of visitors wanting to know more about the Society, seeking information on their families or homes, or just satisfying their curiosity about this or that.

A good time was had by all!