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Historic acquisition on horizon in Catskill

In this October 2018 file photo, Greene county residents attend the launch for the first Best of Greene County contest at HiLo.
February 21, 2019 10:06 pm

CATSKILL — One of the two final loans from the Greene County Legislature through the Community Development Block Grant Program will fund a history-making business acquisition in the village of Catskill.

The other will deliver a badly needed commercial enterprise to Athens in the coming months.

HiLo Catskill is looking to close the deal on a new venue space next month.

Restaurant owners Liam and Laura Singer are in the process of purchasing Doubles II, a popular and historic nightclub on Water Street. County lawmakers approved $50,000 for the new venture Wednesday night.

The state requires all municipalities that use Community Development Block Grant funds to convert the loans into cash and use the money for eligible projects by March 31. To receive future funding, the county must form a nonprofit local development corporation to apply for the grants.

A resolution accomplishing this passed the full Legislature in November in a 9-5 vote.

HiLo’s loan and a $60,000 loan for A Clear Run, a trucking company proposed for Athens, were approved Wednesday night and mark the last two loans that the county needed to make to distribute the funding and meet state requirements.

Doubles II owner Sam Aldi is thrilled to see his business head in a new direction.

“It’s not a closing of a business but a metamorphosis of one,” Aldi said. “A lot of people wanted to buy it, but I wanted to sell it to people who would carry on the mission of making it a fun place to go.”

This type of local venue is essential to Catskill, Aldi said.

“Catskill needs a place for people to go instead of traveling to Hudson or Poughkeepsie for entertainment,” he said.

The Singers will continue Aldi’s traditions by having DJs take the stage on Friday and Saturday nights, he said.

“There will be more hours, more time, more entertainment,” Aldi said. “I’m very happy.”

Under the new ownership, the kitchen will expand and all current employees will retain their jobs, Aldi said.

The Singers declined to comment about the new venture, citing the pending transaction.

Doubles II will remain open until a final “goodbye party” sometime next month, Aldi said.

“There will be entertainment, buffet food and a wall of memories,” Aldi said.

Aldi has owned Doubles II for 13 years.

“I’m very proud of Doubles and how it’s come out,” he said. “I will walk off with my head held high on a cruise.”