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, May 4, 2016

Saranac Lake’s Daffest Coincides With Mother’s Day

IMG_6423Springtime in the Adirondacks can get a bad reputation sometimes, thanks to the black flies and muddy trails. For my family, spring is an opportunity to witness change, even if that change comes with some bug bites and dirty shoes.

We have played hard during the winter. Now we’re looking for some colorful indicators that the cold weather is behind us and summer is around the corner.

Native wild flowers, like marsh marigolds or the trout lily, are part of Mother Nature’s subtle approach to brightening spring.  The thousands of bright yellow daffodils planted for Saranac Lake’s Daffest are the much bolder approach by humans. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, April 28, 2016

Lake George Land Conservancy Volunteer Day

IMG_9254Just when I thought winter was over, Mother Nature decides to put me in my place with a late dumping of snow around the High Peaks. Though we may be dragging out the shovels and breaking out the skis, some places in the Adirondacks are getting ready for a bit of spring cleaning.

This weekend, on Arbor Day, The Lake George Land Conservancy (LGLC) office in Bolton Landing is requesting some volunteer help from anyone willing to put in a little elbow grease. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, April 21, 2016

A Children’s Passport to Earth Day in North Creek

IMG_8246For the second year North Creek is focusing children ages 3-10 on Earth Day during a event April 23 from 10 am to 1 pm that features over 15 activities around the village. Children will have the chance to solve everyday problems and learn how to leave the world in a better place.

According to Johnsburg Youth Committee Organizer Kate Hartley the Earth Day Passport activities are within walking distance and teen volunteers will be on hand as guides. » Continue Reading.


Friday, April 15, 2016

Friends of Camp Santanoni Welcome DEC Management Plan

IMG_3836The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) recently finalized a management plan dedicating more restoration and maintenance to Newcomb’s historic Great Camp Santanoni.

According to Adirondack Architectural Heritage (AARCH) Executive Director Steven Engelhart the preservation of Camp Santanoni was one of the first issues that helped to form the nonprofit preservation organization. Now, 25 years later, AARCH continues to provide historic outreach, education and advocacy around the Adirondack Park. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, April 7, 2016

Hadley’s 12th Annual Maple in April Planned

HadleyMapleinApril_horsesNew York Maple Weekends may have passed by but the maple celebration continues April 30- May 1 as part of the 12th annual Hadley Maple in April Festival. With live music and local food, Maple in April has people lining the streets of Hadley.

According to Festival Committee Chairperson Susan Wilder one reason their festival is such a success is that it takes place after the rush of maple sugaring season. When the sap first starts to run, most producers are busy boiling so holding the event later in the season allows area maple producers to participate with visitors and locals. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 31, 2016

Maple Weekend At Parker Family Maple Farm

ParkerMapleWagonRideThis weekend New York State maple producers are opening their doors again for visits, tastings and pancake breakfasts. This celebration of spring can be found throughout the state with many producers offering a wide range of activities as well as samplings of their tasty maple products.

According to owner Pat Parker there are five generations of her family involved in her maple business. With almost 50,000 taps on 1,000 acres, the Parker Family Maple Farm in West Chazy proudly makes their local maple syrup while creating a year-round business. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Pendragon Theatre’s Young Playwrights’ Festival April 2

NCPR Young Playwrights' Festival 2014 (1) image 1Earlier this winter Saranac Lake’s Pendragon Theatre once again rolled out the red carpet and offered free playwright workshops for students. These professionally run workshops helped students streamline their original submissions to the annual Young Playwright Festival. Through the Young Playwrights’ Festival, Pendragon Theatre is not only making the stage come alive for young adults, but their words as well.

“This year we offered writing workshops leading up to the Young Playwright Festival,” says Managing Director Tara Palen. “We thought it made more sense to help the students construct their submissions before the deadline.” » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 17, 2016

Indian Lake Irish Road Bowling

IMG_1833From green beer to corned beef and cabbage, some of the most popular St. Patrick’s Day traditions in America have little connection to Ireland. Not to downplay the importance of dressing in green, parades and brined meat, but one fun tradition that has been practiced in Ireland for hundreds of years in the counties of Cork and Armagh, is the sport of Irish Road Bowling. Indian Lake has been making this part of its St. Patrick’s Day tradition since 2006.

A few years ago my family decides to claim our Irish traditions, via family in Cork and being dabblers in green beer, with an afternoon of bowling in Indian Lake. We register as a family team and are handed a “bullet,” the official 28 ounce iron ball. Though it feels less like bowling and more like bocce, the energy is infectious. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 10, 2016

Plattsburgh Irish Festival This Weekend

unnamedThe City of Plattsburgh has been trying out new events every other month as well as growing its ongoing activities, according to City of Plattsburgh Events and Promotional Coordinator Sandra Geddes.  Organizing an event around St. Patrick’s Day came naturally, she said.

“We hold an event every other month and we wanted to plan this activity near St Patrick’s Day” says Geddes. “We want people to come, wear lots of green and enjoy all the games, food an music and kids and adults.” » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Reason 2 Smile World Music Festival Saturday

Reason2SmileDrummingThe Lake Placid not-for-profit organization Reason 2 Smile is hosting an its annual all-day cultural music festival with workshops, a children’s camp, and an evening performance on March 5 at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts.

According to Reason 2 Smile Executive Director Donna Rosenblum, the one-day event will be presented in the same format as previous years. A morning Kids Camp, ages 6-12, will introduce Kenyan games, crafts, African drumming and dance; younger children (ages 5 and under) are welcome to attend with an adult. The morning and afternoon adult workshops (ages 13 years and older) focus on art, music and dance with various activities from Native American Storytelling and Didgeridoo making, to Irish Step Dancing. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, February 24, 2016

The 14th Annual Frozen Fire and Lights in Inlet

IMG_8425Though Inlet’s annual Frozen Fire and Lights has grown into a town-wide affair, the beginnings of this event started when French Louie ADK Sports owner Paul Chambers wanted to celebrate his birthday with fireworks. According to Inlet Tourism Director Adele Burnett, Chambers needed permission from the town and then solicited businesses to contribute toward the celebration. Now in its 14th year, Frozen Fire and Lights is a destination event for residents and visitors alike.

“Paul and his wife Reggie, who owns the Adirondack Reader bookstore, do so much for the town,” says Burnett. “Frozen Fire and Lights began with a simple request, but now focuses on all the activities that Fern Park has to offer.” » Continue Reading.


Thursday, February 18, 2016

Brant Lake Winter Carnival: Outhouse Races, Music, More

12742643_1003139253087073_6336187608282204716_nLast year my family attended the annual Brant lake Winter Carnival at Jimbo’s Club at the Point. It was a fun-filled day of activities from snowshoe softball to outhouse races. According to the Tri-Lakes Business Alliance’s Cindy Meade, this year’s event is still offering all those same events on the shoreline of beautiful Brant Lake.

“This is the fourth [year] for the winter carnival,” says Meade, who noted the lake now has over 10 inches of ice. The Lake Placid Curling Club will be offering demonstrations and there will be a $1,000 in cash prizes for the outhouse races. The rules are posted on the Tri-Lakes Business Alliance Facebook page. The winners also received an outhouse birdhouse donated by McCluskey’s Hardware in Chestertown. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Presidents’ Week Family Fun At Adirondack Museums

AdirondackMuseum-FrostFest_Snowshoeing The Adirondack Museum and The Wild Center are offering a variety of winter activities during the upcoming Presidents’ Week.

The Wild Center in Tupper Lake will be open every day from February 12 to 21 celebrating the season with a different winter theme each day. The Wild Center’s winter hours are usually Friday through Sunday, so this is indeed a special treat for everyone. The staff at the Wild Center is pulling out all the stops with special guided snowshoe walks, live animal encounters and even a winter watercolor project. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Ten Days Of Winter Fun At The Saranac Lake Winter Carnival

IMG_6522Since 1897, the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival has been a festival as unique as the community that shapes it.

According to Saranac Lake Winter Carnival Committee Public Relations Chair Colleen O’Neill, the event is a special time for everyone. It may have started as a means to relieve the winter blues, but has evolved into a venue for a variety of events. From Flowerball to Arctic Golf, the Winter Carnival has so many offerings that participants have to pick and choose between their favorite activities. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, January 26, 2016

CanAm Pond Hockey On Mirror Lake This Weekend

IMG_0020A pond hockey game brings back the simplicity of winter sport and what better place to enjoy one than the home of the 1980 “Miracle on Ice.”

For the 11th year, the CanAm Hockey Tournament has come to Lake Placid to celebrate the spirit of hockey under the backdrop of the Adirondack High Peaks. Currently 74 teams are waiting to take to the 20 ice rinks on Mirror Lake this weekend, January 28-31, 2016.

According to Tournament Director Eric Chapman this weekend’s pond hockey match-ups are only open to adults, but spectators have just as much fun watching the players hit the rinks. » Continue Reading.


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