Four talented actresses with Big Sky Productions will appear in the play ”Women on Fire,” written by Irene O’Garden.

Sponsored by Friends of the the Mamakating Library, it will be staged at 7 p.m. Aug. 17 at Mamakating Town Hall. Each emotionally charged monologue features a woman on fire in her own way - through passion, love, fear and self-discovery. The show earned the highest audience satisfaction rating in a Wall Street Journal/Zagat Theatre Survey, and a New York Times review called it "bewitching ... astounding ... heartbreaking.”

The performers are Sharlene Hartman of Middletown, Constance Slater of Hasbrouck, Lori Schneider of Hurleyville and Big Sky's artistic director Carol Montana of Grahamsville. Big Sky’s last performance at the Mamakating Library was sold out and people were turned away. At Town Hall, located at 2948 Route 209 in Wurtsboro, an overflow crowd could easily be handled.

In the absence of an admission fee, a free-will offering would be appreciated. Registrations are requested by calling 888-8004.

Gift of Life

Because cancer is a random killer and can strike anyone at any time, volunteers have been recruiting drives to register potential bone marrow and stem cell donors. These painless swabs from inside your mouth will benefit patients suffering from diseases such as leukemia and lymphoma who are in need of transplants. Gail Oliver of Newburgh and Lorraine Wernow of Marlboro are leading drives on behalf of the Gift of Life Marrow Registry. They are:

• at noon Aug. 18 at the Puerto Rican Festival, on the Newburgh Waterfront,

• at 4 p.m. Aug. 28 at Mount Saint Mary College in Newburgh, and

• all day at the Plattekill Day Festival in Modena.

“Everyone is encouraged to participate in the drives,” said Oliver. “If you are between the ages of 17 and 45 and in general good health, you are eligible to be screened and join the worldwide registry for patients in need. A simple swab from inside your cheek is all that it takes to determine if you are a match.”

Oliver said that two donors were found last year at the Monticello Latino Festival. “We are hoping to find many more this year,” she said.

For information about Gift of Life and saving lives through bone marrow donation, visit or call 1-800-9MARROW.

This & that

• The West Point Association of Graduates serving West Point and the Long Gray Line, is inviting fellow graduates, parents and friends to a rally from 9 a.m.-noon Sept. 15 and they’ll calling it a “Beat Hawaii Open House.” It will be at the Herbert Hall Alumni Center where those attending will enjoy the Cadet Spirit Band and Rabble Rousers. And if you haven’t been to a giant pep rally you are in for a great surprise. As times can change be sure to check the website before leaving home. For information, visit or

• St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital has recognized the legacy of the Stillman Family, founders of the Cornwall Hospital, with a plaque featuring the poem, “Cornwall Hospital,” by Janet Dempsey. Nathaniel Stillman, the grandson of Dr. Ernest Goodrich Stillman and Mildred Whitney Stillman, recently joined hospital administrators and other community members for a short ceremony to commemorate the family’s philanthropic legacy.

“We would like to thank the Stillman Family for their continued commitment to St. Luke’s Cornwall Hospital,” said Joan Cusack-McGuirk, hospital president and CEO. “With the continued evolution of our healthcare delivery system, we are in the midst of further transforming the Cornwall campus into a robust outpatient center with services to meet the needs of our community,” she said. “Renovations are underway to expand the Center for Rehabilitation and add outpatient dialysis services.”

Barbara Bedell’s column appears daily. She can be reached at 346-3125 or by email: