Several years ago our own Glens Falls Post Star had a community forum. They promised that citizens of the Adirondack North Country would have a place to discuss the news of the day and (god-forbid) provide feedback on the “news” paper’s reporting. It didn’t last long. Some forum posters demonstrated that the paper was editing its AP Newswire stories to lean just a little more to the right and others tossed out accusations that the paper was unfairly covering local elections (apparently also true considering their lack of coverage of independent parties so far in the coming election). Anyway, it wasn’t long before that forum was closed. » Continue Reading.
On the heals of the Saranac Lake WalMart debacle comes the latest planning ignorance from our elected officials. Lowe’s Home Improvement will be using their immense size along with lame and out of proportion architectural [ahem] design, to further erode downtown
Ti could have a nice downtown, which although filled with numerous abandoned shops and empty lots, still has much of its Victorian character and walkability. Unfortunately local and regional planners are eager to abandon the downtown in favor of ugly, automobile access only, strip development about a mile away. So far a
Instead, Lowe’s, along with Congressman John McHugh (R-Pierrepont Manor, Vietnam draft-dodger), Ticonderoga Town Supervisor Robert C. Dedrick, and a number of other small-minded corporatist want to see Lowe’s build a 53 feet high 124,000 square foot store with, and get this, a 245 square foot sign! The standard APA park sign size is 60 square feet and the building is already designed a full story above the park limit. Apparently Lowe’s thinks that the
Dedrick said a 60-square-foot sign was put up as a test at the proposed Lowe’s site.
“You could barely see the sign. You certainly couldn’t read the letters.”
Ah… yeah… sure Dedrick, maybe that’s because most reasonable people believe that a building and its sign shouldn’t be designed as an eyesore on purpose and that a 53 by what 2 or 3 hundred foot building is visible enough – especially when it’s designed to be entirely incongruent with its surroundings.
Dedrick said a busload of
Ticonderogacitizens will be going to APA headquarters in Ray Brook for the meeting when the vote will be taken.
“We have had extreme support on this. APA, here we come.”
Supervisor Joyce Morency (R-St. Armand) said that as many members of the Essex County Board of Supervisors as possible should also attend.
Folks, take the time to counter these fools and save Ticonderoga from their lengthy tenure at destroying one of
Vote them out!
Attend the public hearing on the sign variance on either July 17 or 24 at the
UPDATE 7/13: The Press Republican accurately describes the current situation in an editorial July 11:
Ticonderoga Supervisor Robert Dedrick says the APA has assured him the process will be conducted fairly and without bias.
At this stage, that appears unlikely, for it will be difficult for the agency to rule against Lowe’s now, no matter how much sense it might make to do so. If the agency decides the store must settle for the 60 square foot sign, the charges of obstinacy and absence of fairness will fly in earnest. It will take more guts than normal to rule against the company.
In government, appearance is often more important than reality. In this case, it appears the APA has been backed into a ruling it will be hard pressed to deny.
The simple fact remains – the size of their store is a more than big enough sign. By trying to muscle the agency whose job it is to defend the character of the Adirondacks they prove themselves to be the enemy of the New York Constitution and the people its represents.
UPDATE 7/20: The Adirondack Park Agency issued a permit approving construction of a 153,000 square foot Lowe’s including a 124,051-square foot building and attached 28,829-square foot garden center, a parking lot for 441 vehicles, signage, lighting and landscaping. Municipal water supply, wastewater treatment and stormwater facilities will serve the Lowe’s Store. Once the permit is recorded in the Essex County Clerk’s Office, the developer is free to begin construction. The permit includes a condition that sign for the proposed store must conform to the size and height limitations required by the Agency’s “Standards for Signs Associated with Projects.” Agency regulations limit signs on jurisdictional projects to 40 square feet (15 square feet for luminous signs) and limit the total sign area of two signs on a project site to 60 square feet.
UPDATE 7/26: A well-organized group of ill-informed locals gave the APA a hard time at the hearing over the sign. Here’s a nice tidbit:
Moriah Town Supervisor Thomas Scozzafava is a longtime foe of the APA.
“We have suffered economic hardship in the Adirondack Park since the creation of the Adirondack Park Agency. We have been forced to live like second-class citizens.”
Sure Scozzafava – you live like a second class citizen.
Take a look at the latest entries from Trinity University’s President Patricia McGuire blog. She’s been making her annual sojourn into the Adirondacks and has some interesting insights. Here’s a sample:
Driving east on Rte. 30 yesterday, about half a mile ahead I observed vehicles swerving all over the road. I approached cautiously, thinking there must be a piece of debris on the ground. But lo and behold, when I got closer, I saw the cause of all the commotion: a turtle about the size of a dinner plate ambling across the street from one marsh to another.
Now, growing up in Philadelphia, our vacations took us to South Jersey along the Black Horse Pike. We used to see a lot of turtles crossing the road along the way — or the remnants thereof. It’s where I first heard the term “roadkill.” You got points for hitting, fingers raised for swerving to save a turtle life.
Up here in the Adirondacks, I don’t see much roadkill. Instead, there’s a distinctive effort to preserve wildlife, including the turtle crawling across Rte. 30. Those swerving cars weren’t citified environmental lawyers in their Navigators. No, they were lumberjacks and fishermen in 4×4’s. Everyone understands the rules of the wilderness. Humans and wild things living side-by-side, warily respecting each other’s space. Nobody got hurt in all that swerving. No fingers waved out of car windows. Even the turtle made it home for dinner safely.
It’s always interesting to hear what others think about our Adirondack region – and their turtles.
Suggested Reading: Proceedings of the International Conference on the Conservation, Restoration, and Management of Tortoises and Turtles (SUNY Purchase, 1993)
In case you missed it – and we’re sure you did – last weekend brought a Burning Man like celebration to our neighbors in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont called Firefly [Flickr photo set]. We heard about it from the uvScene, and outstanding
Suggested Viewing: The Burning Man DVD
In a strangely foolish move two weeks ago (designed to make local Public Radio Station WAMC look bad?) the Warren County daily reported the following:
Warren County supervisors agreed Wednesday to spend $9,800 in occupancy tax funds for a year’s worth of advertising on WAMC/Northeast Public Radio. The money buys 52 weeks of “embedded” advertising during WAMC’s morning program, The Round Table. In addition to small announcements, discussion of the county and region is integrated into the commentary on the Round Table show, explained county Budget Officer Nicholas Caimano.
The Albany Eye (a one-man band blog, not a serious newspaper like the PS is supposed to be) was quick to point out that what the Post Star was saying was that
It sounds like this means that the county will get to place guests on the show where they’ll promote events and other
tourism initiatives. Warren County
Well, that’s what it sounded like to us as well, and probably anyone else who bothered to pick up one of the
Worse yet, on Tuesday the paper’s Christine Margiotta passed the fault back to Caimano:
Warren County Budget Officer Nicholas Caimano drew sharp criticism Monday from WAMC/Northeast Public Radio over his description last week of an underwriting deal between the county and the radio station.
WAMC staff members said Caimano was out of line last week when he said
‘s status as a station underwriter would buy “embedded” advertising and commentary on WAMC’s “The Round Table” morning show. Warren County
Susan Arbetter, co-host of The Round Table show, explained Monday that underwriters have no influence over the show’s content.
“WAMC and the Round Table never do quid pro quo,” she said. “We certainly sell underwriting but there is a firewall between the underwriting department and editorial at WAMC. It’s as sacred at WAMC as it is at any newspaper.”
Fine, but here’s the rub:
Caimano said Monday his lack of understanding led him to inaccurately characterize WAMC’s underwriting process to the
of Supervisors. county Board
Ah… sure… but it was a lack of real journalism on the part of the Post Star that reported his false claim as fact and led them “to inaccurately characterize WAMC’s underwriting process to the county.”
True to form, the
Adirondack Progressives, who have been heralded here at the Almanack a few times before, have announced that they will meet at 7:30 pm, tomorrow (Thursday, 7/15) at the Rock Hill Bake House Cafe in Glens Falls.
According to always active progressive Matt:
It’s time! Howie Hawkins (Green candidate for U.S. Senate against Hillary) is coming to
next month for a fundraiser that we’re going to put on for him! We need to help this man out …in the fall, we can likely have him come up with Malachy McCourt (the Green candidate for Governor) and hear them speak at the Wood Theater. Let’s see the Post-Star ignore that! So far they have neglected to mention, even once, that there are any alternatives to Hillary and Spitzer. Glens Falls
We hope you can make it!
While we’re at it: The Working Families Party Election Round-Up for June
I prophesy in the name of the Lord God of Israel, unless the United States redress the wrongs committed upon the Saints in the state of Missouri and punish the crimes committed by her officers that in a few years the government will be utterly overthrown and wasted, and there will not be so much as a potsherd left.
So it was that Joseph Smith, prophet of God and founder of the Mormon Church (now the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) rather mistakenly announced the demise of these
So what do Joseph Smith and the Mormon Church have to do with the
Long story short, Strang converted to Mormonism, was elected to the State Legislature, claimed to have had heavenly visions, and that an angel appeared before him to tell him the secret location of – you guessed it – another buried account of ancient people, this time etched into brass plates.
After Joseph Smith was killed by a mob in
Strang moved with about 125 followers to
That didn’t last long and James Jesse Strang was shot 150 years ago this June and died a short time later. His spiritual descendents are still spread around the Midwest,
Suggested Reading: Rachael Ray’s Latest Cookbook – Perfect for the Grocery-less Adirondacks
Kelly Eustis tells NewsWatch50 he borrowed the idea from student leaders at SUNY New Paltz but also believes it’s a Republican-oriented issue.
“I believe it is our constitutional right,” Eustis said. “It will show people that it is the right to bear arms. It will also act as a defense organization for the students of SUNY Potsdam and act as a kind of a watchdog group for police.”
Eustis said that after just a few days of soliciting he has 16 students interested in being a part of the militia.
At SUNY New Paltz, Student Association leaders are proposing patrols consisting of three students, two armed with shotguns and a third carrying a video camera.
Friends… prepare your arm salutes! We only hope there isn’t a beer garden nearby.
Suggested Reading: Potsdam Public Museum’s Photo History of Potsdam
Over at jockeystreet we have a great post on the meaning of May 1st – that’s the original May 1st, not the jingoistic 1958 Cold War version that is dying a slow and deserving death in Glens Falls – apparently much to the dismay of the Glens Falls Post Star.
Speaking of the region’s worst daily – and we recently spoke with a long time VIP at the paper who completely agreed with that assessment. We wish we could say more about that but he asked us not to. Anyway, Matt is back with his Angry (and strikingly disturbing and truthy) Letters to the Editor which demonstrate the long held accusations of Matt’s. Apparently they are withholding and corrupting the news, printing painfully slanted rhetoric in place of the news, and, well, lying to their readers.
A nice comparison is to take a look at these two stories:
From the Post Star: DEC wins court decision stopping vehicle use on
And from the North Country Gazette (now a one woman about to go under webzine): Horicon Loses Attempt to Lift ATV Ban
In other internet news – we have a bizarre thread on the need to carry guns while hiking. Forget the bears! Its the teenagers some are ready to shoot.
And there’s the local Wikipedia war with words!
While we’re going on about the new wonders of the internet – Metroland has a good read about the death of local music retailer The Music Shack – unfortunately the blame is all on us, has nothing to do with them:
For every music collector, record collector, appreciator of album covers and lover of lyric sheets, there is a careless bandit, an unemotional music drone, the one who downloads music willy-nilly, regardless of taste, ignoring the band’s history or influences, oblivious to the group’s importance and pedigree or lack thereof. These buyers are the ones who are giving Memorex, Dynex and Verbatim a boost in the piggy bank. They are the ones you see scooping the jumbo CD carrying cases off the shelves at Wal-Mart to fill with ugly, scribbled-on discs. They are the people who don’t recognize the album covers or know the track names of their favorite bands.
Metal fans are in a tizzy – where will they buy the latest Tool? Meanwhile, music is making real progress on an old front – connecting with the dramatic and awful things that are happening today. We give you:
The release of Bruce Springsteen’s cover of Pete Seeger tunes from Hudson Mohawk IMC
The release of Neil Young’s Living With War (with extra mp3 goodness for all you “unemotional music drones”) from Vermont’s False 45th Blog.
UPDATE #1 – 05/10/06: NCPR reports on calls to restrict ATV use by young children.
UPDATE #2 – O5/10/06: Forgot to mention a really great music blog agregator with plenty of great mp3 goodness – elbo.ws
Last week’s fire in Lake George Village destroyed a block of architectural blunders that had replaced the majestic Hotel Lake George, which itself was destroyed by fire in 1978.Let’s only hope someone has a little better foresight and consideration of the character of the village when they rebuild (or approve a rebuild) this time. Consider what it looked like in the 1950s:
The old Hotel Lake George had been a local landmark owned byCaldwellSupervisor (as the Town ofLake Georgewas known then) Edwin J. Worden – it was called the Hotel Worden until the late 1940s or early 1950s. » Continue Reading.
Graduate student researcher Heather Root has made international news with the discovery of three new species in the canopy near Newcomb. The paper was presented at the Ninth Annual Northeast Natural History Conference in Albany.
UPDATE 05/09/06: North Country Public Radio has picked up on this story. Root told NCPR’s Brian Mann that she also found a rare lichen believed to have disappeared from the Adirondacks decades ago.
Suggested Reading: A History of Adirondack Mammals
In honor of Earth Day 2006, some interesting and important Adirondack related sites.
It’s still not too late to take part in this year’s Hudson River Sweep a clean-up of the Great North River sponsored by the Scenic Hudson. They even have a cool page to locate your local clean-up event. Unfortunately, the closest clean-ups in our area are down in Saratoga County. » Continue Reading.
This week marks the 100th anniversary of the San Francisco Earthquake. It also mark the April 20th anniversary of a 5.1 earthquake that struck near Ausable Forks in 2002 and still another anniversary – an almost forgotten earthquake that occurred in 1931.
At about 3 p.m. Monday afternoon, on April 20, 1931 the first shock hit. The shaking of the earth was severe in
Earthquakes are not uncommon in
A large quake had struck along the St.,
The 1931 quake was centered near Warrensburg where more than 20 chimneys collapsed and the spire of a church was twisted, but the damage was widespread. Hague was shaken and residents of