Around Town

Butterfield team Beacon Bees

BATTLE OF THE BOOKS — The middle school Battle of the Books team from the Butterfield Library in Cold Spring (top) defended its regional title and advanced to the Mid-Hudson finals on Sept. 22. The Beacon Bees from the Howland Public Library placed third.

Eagle Scout project

NEW BENCHES — The Haldane school district recently accepted a donation from 2023 graduate Raunaq Kapoor: benches, a table and a storage lockbox for its outdoor classroom at James Pond. Kapoor, a Cold Spring resident now attending the University of Utah, built and installed the furniture for his Eagle Scout project.


SHEEP RESCUED — The Woodstock Farm Sanctuary reported on Monday (Sept. 11) that a sheep that had been wandering for weeks in and near St. Luke’s Cemetery in Beacon was lured into a rescue trailer. Named Oracle by neighbors, the sheep “needs a full medical workup,” the sanctuary said on Facebook. “The wool on her back is matted and will need to be removed. We’ll also need to examine her hooves, but right now we’re letting Oracle decompress in her new area.” To contribute to the sanctuary, see

Haldane flags

REMEMBERING 9/11 — As they do each year, Haldane students on Monday (Sept. 11) placed flags on the lawn in front of the high school to remember those lost in the terrorist attacks in 2001.

Girls soccer

THE LATEST BUZZ — In its first game, the newest travel team for the Beacon Soccer Club — the Bumble Bees for girls ages 9 and younger — tied the Wappingers Wings, 6-6.

Photos provided

One thought on “Around Town

  1. Thank you for covering Oracle’s story. Here’s more about what happened. On Aug. 13, we received a report of a lost sheep in Beacon. Solitary sheep are at high risk because they don’t have a herd to protect them, and Beacon is very unsafe because of cars, dogs and proximity to the woods.

    We started asking the community to let us know where the sheep had been seen. We know that once a sheep finds a safe place, it will stay in that area, so we were hoping she had found a spot. Reports of sheep sightings came from all parts of the Beacon area over the summer, including on dangerous hiking trails. Then someone shared in a Facebook group that there was a sheep at St. Luke’s Episcopal Cemetery.

    We did a call-out on social media asking if anyone had eyes on the sheep; fortunately, someone who used to live next to the cemetery contacted a former neighbor, Geneviève Mathis, who said she would help.

    Geneviève said the sheep, which she named Oracle, would run to the woods whenever she felt threatened, so there was no chance of corralling her. Oracle is fast and strong and did not trust people. With permission from the church, we staged a trailer at the edge of the woods. Every day volunteers moved a feeding station closer to the trailer.

    Eventually Oracle was going, on and off, into the trailer, but the door needed to be closed behind her. Even though she trusted Geneviève, who was bringing her pears and peaches from her backyard and spending hours speaking kindly to her, Oracle wouldn’t stay on the trailer if anyone was near the door.

    Geneviève got resourceful, and on Sept. 11 managed to close the door with a 15-foot pole. Operation Oracle was a success!

    Oracle is now in an isolation pen at our sanctuary, where she is being tested for viruses, parasites, bacteria and pregnancy. She likely never has received medical care and is at risk for a lot of bacteria and parasites because of her long-term exposure to the elements, unclean water sources and unknown foods. Once she is cleared medically, she will join our herd.

    We reached out to the police and animal agencies and heard no reports of a missing sheep. Due to her fear of humans and her physical condition, we speculate she was likely at a sheep meat farm. She is a hero for surviving that and being on her own for as long as she was. We are honored to give Oracle the life and care she deserves and grateful for the cooperation and compassion that residents of Beacon showed.

    McCrystal is the executive director of the Woodstock Farm Sanctuary.

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