Explore the Hudson Valley

Experience The Hudson Valley

The Alpaca Belt is the New Borscht Belt

  |   March 17, 2015  |  Comment

imagine alpacas

Color us edified: Apparently, alpaca farms are becoming quite successful in the Catskills. How did that enticing bit of ephemera slip past our Cool Stuff Detectors? Thank goodness for this piece from Yahoo! Travel about Imagine Alpacas! (we swear we didn’t add those exclamation points), a Sullivan County-based farms run by Ed and Denise Burkart. Alpacas in Harmony in Cochecton was also mentioned. Both farms are located in what was once considered the Borscht Belt, where downstate families would vacation in resorts from the 1920s-1970s. We adore alpacas from their fur-covered feet to their luxuriously long eyelashes, and we’re not alone. “Altogether,” the Yahoo! piece explained, “in the area spanning upstate New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, there are about 15 farms creating a larger alpaca community, not including a handful of farms that are closed to visitors or the bed-and-breakfasts that have a tiny herd on-site.” The article goes on to give a handy-dandy little guide to where to stay when you’re visiting the alpacas, including The Graham & Co. in Phoenicia, the Spruceton Inn in West Kill, and the Arnold House in Livingston Manor.


Could alpaca farm tourism become a cottage industry in the Catskills? Is there any way to dovetail this with the sleepwear industry? Because we think llama pajamas sound great. Speaking of sleeping and llamas, you know who else has alpacas? Buttermilk Falls Inn and Spa in Milton, Ulster. Perhaps you’ve heard us mention them a time or two. If not, please direct your attention here. Vote on your dream house for the opportunity to win a $250 gift certificate to Henry’s at the Farm, Buttermilk Falls Inn’s on-site farm-to-table restaurant. While you’re there, say hi to the llamas for us.

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