Monday, April 18, 2022

Remembering Al Mower who died April 18, 1966


Can it really be fifty six years ago that Al Mower died as a result of injuries sustained in a head on collision?  His six children are grown. He has great great grandchildren who have yet to learn of the wonderful loving influence he had on his family. 

“The World is Round and often what seems like the end is really the beginning”  OVID

“Very often, small communities change subtly over time. For example, a rural area like Lake Katrine in the Town of Ulster was once dotted with dairy farms which stretched for miles along the sandy banks of the Esopus Creek. At some point in the early 1950’s, the Town Ulster welcomed the construction of the IBM center and within ten or fifteen years the neighborhood changed to include strip malls, a drive-in theatre and four lane divided highways. 

Occasionally, a small town experiences a heralding event that creates a quick shift in the social and economic fabric of it.   In 1968, Woodstock was a rural township, a conglomeration of seven unique hamlets each content with the Town’s overall dual image as a bed room community for IBM and Rotron as well as a mature colony of the arts.  Locals will fondly recall that during this time period, from Labor Day to the following Memorial Day, one could roll a bowling ball down the center of Mill Hill Road and never hit a person or a car.  In spite of occasional complaints, most year-round residents were able to adjust to the seasonal up tick of activity that accommodated the music and art population.

Managing the town government was more or less a part time endeavor; the Town Clerks’ office was on Tinker Street in the Town Hall building, the Supervisor worked out of the same office or from his home. The constabulary consisted of four or five local men who worked a day shift and half an evening shift during the summer season. The Mowers of Maple Lane, now residing in West Hurley, were finding their way in life. Each one adjusting to the untimely loss of their husband and father, Al Mower, as a result of injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident while on vacation in 1966.”

Excerpt from American Tapestry, the Mowers of Maple Lane, Janine Fallon Mower- Anam Cara Press

Woodstock NY, 2007    Available from the author email

Sunday, April 17, 2022

How John Mower Started the Flea Market in 1977



       We celebrate our 45th year in flea marketing this year.  As we get ready to open up again at the corner of Deanies Alley and Maple Lane in Woodstock, N.Y., join us as we look back at our many years in business by posting highlights of Janine Fallon- Mower’s history of the Mower family of Woodstock, N.Y.  This book, American Tapestry, the Mowers of Maple Lane,  includes the history of the first twenty-five years of Mower’s flea market.  The book is available though the author for $ 15.00.  Contact Janine at or stop by the flea market and purchase one there.

       " Mower’s Saturday Market on Maple Lane began over 30 years ago when there became a need for a new venue at which to hold the traditional market fairs. Ralph Tripico, an antique dealer who operated a booth at the Woodstock Playhouse Saturday market fair site approached John in the spring of 1974 about renting the vacant lot on Maple Lane for an antique market.  

          After careful consideration, John had a contract drawn up by local lawyer Richard Anthony. The markets opened that summer under Tripico’s management and ran on Saturdays from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Ralph and his wife eventually decided to move to the Virginia Beach area to be near family and open an antique shop. John, now seeing the merits of having the income to cover the property expenses, indicated his interest in continuing the market.  At first, it looked like it would be a challenge to create a vendor list. As luck would have it, Bill Lubinsky, Woodstock Festival Tee Shirt was very interested in having the markets continue in Woodstock and offered to help contact potential vendors. John and Bill shook hands and Bill declared;

Figure 1 John and Janine Mower with Bill Lubinsky in the back row. Robert Depew Reynolds, kneeling. Allan and Colleen Mower, center.

 “Well, John, now you are in the flea market business”

        John Mower began renting spaces to sellers of everything under the sun in 1977 on the lot of land that was purchased by his great grandfather, Walter Mower in 1907.  Vendors attending numbered about 20 in the early years and were set up along Deanies Alley, under the stately pine trees that the France boys used as their summer time camp site in the mid 1950’s. Parking for customers and vendors was in the lot below the property. John made arrangements with old friend Deanie Elwyn to rent this lot on Deming Street for a nominal annual fee. Eventually, the old “Pinball Palace” building and lot were sold and the rental agreement was dissolved. With input from the town planning board, John decided to move the vendors off the alley and deeper into the field.                                                                                   

Excerpt from American Tapestry, the Mowers of Maple Lane, Janine Fallon Mower- Anam Cara Press Woodstock NY, 2007    Available from the author email


The Best of Flea Market Home and Living Magazine.

Boy, were we excited and pleasantly surprised to see Mowers Saturday Sunday flea market mentioned on page 127 of a recent issue of The Best ...