Almanack Contributor Diane Chase

Diane Chase

Diane Chase is the author of the Adirondack Family Activities guidebook series, Adirondack Family Time. She writes about ways to foster imaginative play through fun-filled events and activities in the Adirondack region.

From her home in Saranac Lake, Diane also writes a weekly family-oriented newspaper column for the Adirondack Daily Enterprise and keeps her own blog Adirondack Family Time. Her writing and photography has appeared in numerous newspapers, magazines, marketing companies and advertising agencies.

She even finds time to assist her husband with Adirondack Expeditions guiding families and young adults in the High Peaks.


Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Best Fourth in the North: Five Days of Fun in Ticonderoga

According to Ticonderoga Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Mathew Courtright, Ticonderoga’s annual Best Fourth of the North celebration was originally organized by the Ticonderoga Volunteer Fire Department.  After Courtright polled his own family, he learned the event has been happening for over 65 years, maybe longer.

“Debbie Barber is the chairperson of the event,” says Courtright. “It has always been run by a dedicated group of volunteers. They add various aspects to the event each year. This year we have seven bands and even added a fifth day.” » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Pollinator Project Passing Out 30,000 Wildflower Seed Packets

Adirondack Pollinator ProojectADKAction has spent the past three years helping spread the word out about the importance of milkweed. With the distribution of over 20,000 free seed packets now Adirondack roadsides, gardens, and community parks are thriving with the Monarch butterflies only food source.

According to ADK Action Executive Director Brittany Christenson, the organization began the Milkweed project at the time when the plight of the Monarchs was also receiving a lot of national press. At the time, some people couldn’t even recognize Monarchs, let alone understand that milkweed was the only plant where Monarchs laid eggs.

“The timing of the project was perfect,” says Christenson. “After talking with people we feel that we were able to help get the word out. People are aware of the Monarch’s issue and know what they can do to help. Now we are focusing our attention on a broader range of pollinators.” » Continue Reading.


Friday, June 16, 2017

Lake George Steamboat Company Celebrating Bicentennial

Although commercial steam-boating began well over 200 years ago, it was in 1817 that Lake George began to utilize the service as a means to connect its small shoreline settlements. Now 200 years later, The Lake George Steamboat Company is still operating pleasure cruises along the shores of Lake George.

After the Civil War the steamboat company became part of the Delaware and Hudson Railroad. This merger allowed passengers traveling between New York City to Canada to take the railroad from Glens Falls to Lake George and then cross the lake to Ticonderoga for the continuation of their train journey.

Through the Great Depression the business slowly declined until World War II brought the commercial side of the business to a close. The business was downsized and changed hands before landing with Captain Wilbur Dow. After renovating and rebuilding the traditional steamboats, the Lake George Steamboat Company passenger service was reinvented and is still owned and operated by members of the Dow family. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, June 8, 2017

Film Forum Brings Cultural Themes to Programs

The 16th Lake Placid Film Forum takes place this week, bringing a blend of international films, screenings, workshops, and master class programs to the Olympic village. According to the Adirondack Film Society’s Operations Manager Fred Balzac, the June 7-11, 2017 event will kick off with a thank you to Lake Placid.

“We are presenting a free screening of the film ‘Eddie the Eagle’ on Wednesday,” says Balzac. “Eddie trained in Lake Placid and we want to celebrate the town’s Olympic roots. We have Larry Stone, a ski jumping coach, as a special guest. This free screening is supported by the town and village of Lake Placid.”

Around the year 2000, The Lake Placid Film Forum went through a restructuring phase with the loss of corporate funding and the nature of the economy. The organizing committee revamped the event into a monthly film series. Due to popular demand, the Film Forum was added back into the schedule and has been growing ever since. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, June 1, 2017

Great Adirondack Birding Celebration Opens at Paul Smith’s VIC

Bird watching along with National Trails Day is a perfect combination and the Paul Smith’s VIC Great Adirondack Birding Celebration (GABC) has a schedule to please everyone from the most passionate to the novice birder.

The 3-day festival of birds for bird watchers offers full day workshops from as far afield as Champlain Valley to the St. Lawrence Valley. Other events and activities are organized closer to the base camp at Paul Smith’s VIC. » Continue Reading.


Friday, May 26, 2017

Memorial Day ‘Carry the Load’ Project

The importance of Memorial Day can be lost in the shuffle of a long holiday weekend, traffic jams, and parades. Though we may all don our red crepe poppy to honor family and veterans lost in service to our country, a Texas-based organization realized that all our nation’s heroes needed to be honored and one way to help was to Carry The Load.

Carry the Load co-founders Clint Bruce and Stephen Holley war veterans, came home feeling that their friends who had fallen in the line of duty had been forgotten amidst the fireworks and BBQs. To honor those friends and many others that had fallen, Bruce loaded one pound of weight in a backpack to symbolize each friend that he had lost and he conducted a standard military march. The mission spread and now a coast-to-coast relay, marches, and rallies take place across the United States. » Continue Reading.


Friday, May 19, 2017

Citizen Science: Project BudBurst

Participating in various Citizen Science projects allows my family to learn about our local landscape while contributing data to long-term science research. We’ve helped with FrogWatch USA, part of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, to help familiarize us with our local wetlands through the identification of frog and toad calls. We contribute to Monarch Watch, which is currently focusing on the Spring First-of-Year Sightings. This year we started tracking various plants around our area.

Started in 2007, Project BudBurst is a Citizen Science project relying on volunteers across the United States to monitor native plants at various times throughout the seasons. Participants observe and record data based on leafing, flowering, and fruiting of various plants. Those stages are called the plant phenophases, the observable stages in the plant’s annual life cycle. » Continue Reading.


Friday, May 12, 2017

Adirondack Winery Tastings For Mother’s Day

I’ve been giving Mother’s Day a lot of thought. It’s taken me years to finally treat “the day” a bit like Christmas, though I’m not sure my family has taken any of my hints. I dog-ear catalogs, make lists, and toss around hints. One activity I’ve always wanted to revisit is an Adirondack wine tasting.

Since my children aren’t old enough to join me and my mother doesn’t drink, my husband is just going to have to take one for the team. » Continue Reading.


Friday, May 5, 2017

Rulf’s Orchard 65th Anniversary Celebration

What started as a small dairy farm in 1952 with 12-acres of apple trees has now grown to be an farmstand destination in Peru, NY. Over the past 65 years, Rulf’s Orchard has expanded from its modest roots to include seasonal vegetables, Pick-U-Own Blueberries and Strawberries, a corn maze, year-round bakery, and a pumpkin patch. It’s the fresh apples and cider that always have my family coming back. This Saturday, the staff and owners of Rulf’s are throwing their own anniversary party to commemorate their 65th anniversary.

According to Rulf’s Office Manager Amanda Whisher, they are finally able to show off their new building and showcase the greenhouses. Though the new addition was completed in September, the staff at Rulf’s wanted to wait until spring to celebrate their latest transition. » Continue Reading.


Friday, April 28, 2017

Saranac Lake’s Daffest Welcomes Spring

Spring is in the air and that means Saranac Lake’s Daffest. With daffodils peeking out from individual yards and local parks, the April 27-30 festival is here to shake off the last of that winter melt and celebrate the hardy flower. Saranac Lake is flush with the bright yellow blossoms.

There are many events on the Daffest schedule including a Pub Crawl, Historic Walk and a 5K Fun Run. By far the largest draw is the annual soapbox derby. My children and friends have been a part of Saturday’s Daffest Derby for years. Though neither were ever in the fastest derby car, the process has always fun. Don’t worry. You don’t have to squeeze yourself into a tiny wooden car and careen down George LaPan Memorial Highway’s hill, to enjoy the soapbox derby. It’s just as fun to be a spectator and check out all the creative cars. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Adirondack Museum Changes Name To ‘The Adirondack Experience’

The Adirondack Museum has changed its name to The Adirondack Experience, The Museum on Blue Mountain Lake (ADKX).

Director of Marketing Ausra Angermann, who came on board in February and has helped implement the name change, said  “Changing a name and identity is not a decision that is taken lightly. The name change was under way before I came on board. Research was conducted and a marketing team put in place as well as an agency to help with the transition.” » Continue Reading.


Friday, April 14, 2017

Adirondack Easter Services on Gore and Whiteface

This Easter, my family is choosing to leave the traditional religious service behind and mark the day on the top of Little Whiteface. Though not everyone commemorates Easter, we hope a sunrise service will be a tradition my child embraces – as well as on that briefly takes her focus off candy hunts.

Every year Gore and Whiteface Ski Resorts offer a nondenominational service that brings everyone closer to nature. Each Easter the two Adirondack ski resorts offer free gondola rides so that everyone can be part of this unique experience. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, April 6, 2017

Inlet Egg Hunts Foster Community Spirit

Easter is right around the corner and egg scrambles and scavenger hunts are scattered around the Adirondack Park. Though Inlet is known for its creative events (think July 4th Ping-Pong Ball Drop), they want to celebrate the adults in their community with an “adult only” egg hunt.

According to Inlet Information Office’s Department Head Mitch Lee, their organization is always hatching all sorts of events for visitors and residents of the Inlet community. Their small community has always relied on eco-tourism and has a full schedule of events that have stood the test of time. » Continue Reading.


Friday, March 31, 2017

Owl Prowl at Lake George on Saturday

Our family always enjoys the opportunity for a night hike, snowshoe or ski. Being able to unwind at the end of the day helps us focus on our other senses, to listen to nature, and reconnect. One favorite way to unwind is calling in the owls. That activity wasn’t something that just showed up on our radar. It began with a local Owl Prowl and it has become part of an evening routine.

According to Lake George Land Conservancy (LGLC) Land Stewart Alex Novack, the LGLC’s April 1st Owl Prowl is a perfect opportunity to learn more about these nocturnal animals. The location for the free night-time hike was chosen because of the potential for interactions with owls. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 23, 2017

Last ‘Official’ Maple Weekend in the Adirondacks

Pancake breakfasts, wooded walks and maple tastings are all on the menu of the the last official New York State Maple Producers Association’s Maple Weekend. Maple producers have been making syrup since mid-February, and it’s shaping-up to be a banner year.

Since the mid-1990s, a one-day open house has grown across New York State into two full Maple Weekends. This weekend (March 25-26) is a great opportunity to learn more about our region’s favorite sugary treat. » Continue Reading.


Page 1 of 2712345...1020...Last »