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Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

Good afternoon! Happy Very Wet Friday, as our summer starts summer winds down. At least it’s going to be a nice weekend. Two weeks to September 1st. It’s pouring out there and 77 degrees in Albany, NY. There is a south breeze at 5 mph. The dew point is 70 degrees. Even by the of low standards of my week long vacation three weeks ago, today is a wet one. Fortunately, the next five days I have off look to be relatively rain free.

This afternoon will have showers and possibly a thunderstorm. Some of the storms could produce gusty winds and heavy rain. High of 77 degrees at 3pm. Three degrees below normal. Maximum dew point of 70 at 3pm. South wind around 5 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms. A year ago, we had mostly cloudy skies. It was humid. The high last year was 86 degrees. The record high of 95 was set in 1913.

The sun will set at 7:51 pm with dusk around 8:21 pm, which is one minute and 32 seconds earlier than yesterday. At sunset, look for light rain and conditions and 76 degrees. The dew point will be 69 degrees. There will be a south breeze at 9 mph. Today will have 13 hours and 45 minutes of daytime, an increase of 2 minutes and 36 seconds over yesterday.

Tonight will have showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm before 8pm, then a chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly between 8pm and 2am. Some of the storms could produce gusty winds and heavy rain. Mostly cloudy, with a low of 68 degrees at 3am. Seven degrees above normal. Maximum dew point of 70 at 6pm. South wind 5 to 8 mph becoming calm after midnight. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms. In 2016, we had partly cloudy skies with more clouds in the early hours of the next day. It was humid. It got down to 65 degrees. The record low of 43 occurred back in 1977.

In 1929, the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution is ratified, guaranteeing women’s suffrage.  And nine years later in 1938, the Thousand Islands Bridge, connecting New York, United States with Ontario, Canada over the Saint Lawrence River via Wellesley Island, is dedicated by U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt. It remains the primary crossing of St. Lawerence River, where Interstate 81 drops down to two undivided lanes. It’s narrow but continues to serve it’s purpose. I’m sure at some point in the future it will be replaced with a modern interstate bridge.

Still haven’t gotten my solar eclipse glasses. I am majorly bummed out by that. After the Save the Pine Bush Hike I went to two different drug stores, a Home Depot and Walmart in search of them. Maybe I should have hit Target and Toy R Us up, but it was getting late. The online eBay seller promises to reimburse my money if I don’t get the glasses by Saturday, but honestly if they aren’t in my mailbox by this evening, I’m kind of screwed. They should have arrived last week. At the time I ordered them, they seemed like a decent price with good reviews on the seller, and honestly I kind of wanted the post-marked eclipse stamp they were supposed to come in. I should have picked them up for free at the library, but I figured leave them for the kids. I’m going to try a few more places tonight and maybe early Saturday.

If I get the solar eclipse glasses, I most certainly will go out South and West. That’s the best place about seeing the eclipse. I am thinking about going out to Allegheny National Forest to camp, visiting Erie, PA on Monday, and viewing the eclipse from the beach out there. I would also go up to Red House beach one of those days in the State Park. Or I might not decide to get that far west, for such a short period of time. I might instead got to just the Finger Lakes, and spend more time at that Watkins Glen Pool.

Otherwise, I may make this into an Adirondack Park trip. I would probably leave a little later on Saturday morning, and get a kayak paddle at the Adirondack Kayak Warehouse. From there, I would go up to Mason Lake and camp at one of those campsites one night, then from there head north to Horseshoe Lake, and then to Jones Pond or Mountain Pond, just outside of the St. Regis Canoe Area. I would probably spend the balance of the week at Deer River Wild Forest, which I got up to in November 2015, but ended up camping at Walter Pratt Camping Area. Or maybe visit some of the St. Lawrence State Forests. There are many interesting lakes and ledges to explore of St. Lawrence.

Or I could up to through the Black River Valley, or areas nearby. I haven’t been up that way in a while. I did like those new campsites up at Otter Creek State Forest. I could then go up to Frank Jadwin State Forest, Greenwood Creek, and so forth. But I haven’t really given much thought to that route. Or many other possibilities. Despite late hour, I haven’t really decided where I am going to go for the long weekend, but I should make up my mind, especially before I leave tomorrow.

As previously noted, there are 2 weeks until September 1st when the sun will be setting at 7:28 pm with dusk at 7:57 pm. It will be the start of the Labor Day Weekend. I’m planning on going to Moose River Plains for that. On that day in 2016, we had mostly cloudy skies and temperatures between 79 and 62 degrees. Typically, the high temperature is 77 degrees. We hit a record high of 96 back in 1953.

Good morning! Happy Thursday. Next Thursday is State Fair Opens. Summer is rapidly coming to an end. Mostly sunny and 61 degrees in Delmar. Calm wind. The dew point is 53 degrees. Should be a beautiful day. Some minor traffic delays downtown but that may be because of the bus running a few minutes later then usual.

Last night’s Save the Pine Bush Dinner was good but I was tired after washing all those dishes. I actually had to sneak out before all the dishes were done to catch the bus home, but I made it. It was a bit strange waiting for the bus with the Capitol lights out, as they were dimmed for the community movie they were showing at West Capitol Park on the big projection screen. I think it’s great that the state is showing those movies, and heck, they’re probably saving money by dimming the lights at the Capitol.

Today will be sunny, with a high of 80 degrees at 3pm. One degrees below normal. Maximum dew point of 56 at 6pm. Light and variable wind. A year ago, we had mostly cloudy skies. It was somewhat humid. The high last year was 81 degrees. The record high of 97 was set in 1913.

The sun will set at 7:53 pm with dusk around 8:23 pm, which is one minute and 31 seconds earlier than yesterday. At sunset, look for partly clear conditions and 76 degrees. The dew point will be 57 degrees. There will be a southeast breeze at 5 mph. Today will have 13 hours and 47 minutes of daytime, an increase of 2 minutes and 35 seconds over yesterday.

Tonight will have a chance of showers, mainly after 1am. Increasing clouds, with a low of 63 degrees at 5am. Three degrees above normal. Maximum dew point of 63 at 6am. Southeast wind 3 to 6 mph. Chance of precipitation is 40%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible. In 2016, we had mostly cloudy skies. It was somewhat humid. It got down to 64 degrees. The record low of 40 occurred back in 1981.

Still no decision has been made on the extended weekend. The weather sure looks nice. I kind of want to go back out to the Finger Lakes to do a re-do of the vacation in warm sunny weather, but I am also a little bored with that idea, as I did spend 9 days and eight nights out int he Finger Lakes (with very little sun and much rain) only two weeks ago.  It’s going to be so hot, so swimming would be fun. I do like sitting by Foster Pond at 1 AM, looking up in the stars. I do like Foster Dairy Bar and truck cap camping by a nice big campfire, and watching the cows chomp on the grass.

On the other hand, I would like to see some of Pennsylvania again, and Erie PA would have a somewhat better view of the Eclipse, assuming that I get eclipse glasses, which never came in the mail. I’m going to look at local retailers now. I’ve heard Walmart and Home Depot have them until they run out. I heard the library ran out — I probably should have gotten my glasses for free there, but I figured it would be easier to order them online — and they were supposed to come with a nice commemorative stamp that I could save. Tonight I will stop at Walmart and Home Depot after the Save the Pine Bush hike to check.

I could go up to the Adirondacks, but that would require more planning, as I can’t just stop at Walmart or Tops like I can if I go to Finger Lakes. But on the other hand, I haven’t spent that much time in the Adirondacks this year, and I haven’t been up to the Northern Adirondacks since 2015. Lows Lakes and St. Regis Canoe Area might be fun to at least visit in the day time, but it might be crowded in the summer. I might be better to go up there in the autumn. Also the Deer River area might be fun to camp in, like was originally the plan in the spring before I got rained out. I have have to get a paddle though for my kayak for that, and I would also have to buy food for the whole week, as grocery options are limited and expensive in the Adirondacks. But if I’m no

On this day in 1977, the Soviet icebreaker Arktika becomes the first surface ship to reach the North Pole. And in 1982, the first Compact Discs (CDs) are released to the public in Germany. I can’t remember the last time I played a CD, I think most music is in mp3 files these days.

As previously noted, next Thursday is State Fair Opens when the sun will be setting at 7:41 pm with dusk at 8:11 pm. On that day in 2016, we had patches of fog, partly cloudy skies and temperatures between 85 and 57 degrees. Typically, the high temperature is 79 degrees. We hit a record high of 95 back in 1947.

Google Maps: Sales Tax Rates In New York

The average sales tax rate in New York State is 8.0%. Saratoga, Washington and Warren Counties have the state's lowest sales taxes at 7%. The highest sales tax upstate is Oneida County at 8.75%, the highest downstate is New York City at 8 7/8%, which includes the Metropolitan Transit Region surcharge of 3/8th of a percent.

Data Source: NYS Tax and Finance, Form 718, Sales Tax Rates by County and City. https://www.tax.ny.gov/pdf/publications/sales/pub718.pdf

About a week ago, I misplaced my credit card. At the time, I didn’t think much about it, and went ahead and canceled my card and had them mail me a new card. They told me it would be only 7-10 business days, and I assumed that was just a worse case scenario, but it turns out it wasn’t. It took a week and half for my new card to arrive.

I am somebody who prefers to us his credit card for as many purchases as possible. This way I don’t have to worry about losing spare change and I can keep better track of my purchases. I have a rewards card, but honestly, I don’t really care that much about the rewards. If I get rewards, so be it. I sometimes use them, sometimes I don’t.

Generally, I avoid auto-pay services like the plague. I know they can be budget busters. I buy refills for my phone every 6 months or a year, which is a bigger payment upfront, but I save later on. That does get withdrawn from the credit card, but not until next year. Always good to pay up front, borrowing sucks. I will have to update that later on. I do auto-pay by rent, electric and gas bill, and car and renter insurance directly from my bank. I don’t have cable TV or Internet, and haul my own trash to the transfer station. Fine, but those are essential, especially living in a rented apartment in the city. When I eventually move off grid, I won’t have any of those expenses except maybe car insurance.

I didn’t think it would be a real issue, until I remember my bus pass was linked to the credit card. I had forgotten my password to my CDTA Navigator bus pass service, so I had to get it reset because I was locked out of my account. So I had to wait a day for that to be reset by CDTA. Fine, but of course the buses take up to “two days” to sync money added to your card to the buses, because they load the fare data via wireless internet once a day, when the buses are returned to the garage for the night, and the fare boxes are unloaded. Fine. It turns out I had enough money to cover my bus fares but I kept a few extra quarters and bucks in my wallet.

Other then that, I didn’t anticipate much issues, although my debit card didn’t seem to work everywhere. I had that issue at Stewarts’ the other day. I don’t like only having the debit card, as I’d rather have two options for payment in case one card doesn’t work. I don’t carry much cash, and if my debit card fails for some reason, I really prefer to use my credit card. Moreover, the credit card is easier to manage – I don’t have to worry about overdrafting it – and it’s easier to review expenditures and pay it all off at once.

So be it.

Read the transcript of Donald Trump’s press conference

While I rarely agree with the president on policy issues, a strongly agree with him on the right to freedom of speech. I think we should have a robust debate on what statues grace our public places, that people shouldn't just be silenced or shouted down because their views are re-pungent to some. State and federal prosecutors should look into those who incited the rioting at the peaceful protests, and prosecute them appropriately.