Saratoga Taverns Influence the Music of America

American Pie, the 1971 anthem inducted into the GRAMMY hall of fame and later covered by Eddie Vedder and Madonna, catapulted songwriter Don McLean from his humble beginnings at Caffè Lena to international stardom. For years the tune has been said to have its origins in Saratoga Springs. Legend has it that while drinking, McLean wrote the song’s lyrics on a napkin at the Tin and Lint bar just down the street from the Caffè where he’d performed earlier that night. According to the story retold by the bar’s owner, Saratoga community members, and storyteller Utah Phillips, McLean passed out and his buddies saved his napkin to return to him. For years, including in a 2005 interview recorded for the Caffè Lena History Project archives, Don McLean has refuted the story stating that he wrote the song in Philadelphia.

Caffe LenaStill the legend persists. The landmark T&L bar is now marked with a plaque that visitors rub for good luck. Don McLean’s name is still scribbled on the Caffè Lena bathroom walls, where a new generation of songwriters are writing their own legendary tunes. For more information about Caffè Lena CLICK HERE.

Saratoga Springs is home to numerous bars, taverns, and restaurants that are home to significant and impactful history, not to mention local gossip and tall tales. Contact Premiere Transportation Group today to organize an outing and tour of Saratoga Springs, NY. From pub crawls to historic home tours, Premiere Transportation Group will escort you from door to door in comfort. Let us know where you want to go!

Yaddo, Saratoga Springs, Home to Nobel Prize Winner

YaddoSaratoga Springs is also home to Yaddo, a 400-acre (1.62 km2; 0.62 sq mi) artists’ community, founded by the great Wall Street financier, Spencer Trask and his wife, the author Katrina Trask. Since its inception in 1900, Yaddo has been home to 60 Pulitzer Prize winning authors and one Nobel Prize winner.

Founded in 1900 by the financier Spencer Trask and his wife Katrina, herself a poet, Yaddo is an artists’ community located on a 400-acre estate in Saratoga Springs, New York. Its mission is to nurture the creative process by providing an opportunity for artists to work without interruption in a supportive environment. Continue reading

1st Train Began in Albany

DeWitt Clinton trainThe DeWitt Clinton of the Mohawk and Hudson Railroad (M&H) was the first steam locomotive to operate in the state of New York and the fourth built in the United States.

The locomotive began operations in 1831. It was named in honor of DeWitt Clinton, the governor of New York State responsible for the Erie Canal, who died in 1828. Portions of the steam engine were cast at the West Point Foundry in Cold Spring NY. The DeWitt Clinton’s first run was from the city of Albany, New York to Schenectady, New York, a run of 16 miles. Its passenger cars were yellow stagecoaches in which the riders would sit either inside or on outdoor rumble seats.

Oldest Pulpit in the US is in Albany, NY

Dutch Church AlbanyThe congregation of the First Church in Albany is the second oldest congregation in the state of New York. It was established in 1642 to serve the Dutch inhabitants of Fort Orange, the adjacent village of Beverwyck, and the patroonship of Rensselaerswyck in general. The current church is the fourth building, The pulpit was imported from the Netherlands in 1656 and is the oldest pulpit in the United States. Shortly after being constructed a memorial service was held for Alexander Hamilton here. The name North Dutch Church came about when the Second Reformed Church was built in 1806 and called the South Church (and later Middle). Theodore Roosevelt attended services here while Governor. A handicap-accessible entrance and further additions were added in the back in 1988.

The First Church has many notable artifacts, including the oldest pulpit and weathercock in the United States, both from 1656. The church also has a large collection of colonial silver and archival records from the 18th century to today. The church had clear glass windows until 1858.

8th Annual Taste of Compassion

Honorary Chairman, Andrea Crisafulli Russo, would like to invite you to raise a glass at the Eighth Annual Taste of Compassion wine tasting benefit.

Friday, January 27, 2012
NYS Museum222 Madison Avenue
Albany, NY 12230
Taste of CompassionFeaturing:

  • Exquisite wines from renowned vintners
  • Delicious light fare
  • Live music by TS Ensemble
  • Phenomenal SILENT auctions

Purchase Tickets: $75 per person in advance $60 junior price (35 and under)

For more information, contact Andrea Googas at 518-438-3583 or
Benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Upstate New York/Vermont Chapter.