Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Adirondack Family Activities’ Diane Chase: A Blacksmithing Demonstration

By Diane Chase, Adirondack Family Activities™

The Adirondack Folk School in Lake Luzerne will be showcasing its new pavilion and blacksmith forge this weekend with free blacksmithing demonstrations on June 18th.

The school is located at the former Town of Lake Luzerne town hall building.  Classes in traditional Adirondack arts such as basketry and twig/rustic furniture building are available as well as other folk art traditions such as weaving, ceramics, quilting and fly tying.

For families, one popular course is the “stick and hike” workshop. Parents and children can come create a walking stick and then go take their stick for a hike around the beautiful 6.8-acre Adirondack Folk School property that borders the Hudson River.

Adirondack Folk School Founder and Acting Director Jim Mandle says, “We recently had a group of high schoolers use the same techniques for the ‘stick and hike’ but instead of a walking stick created a memory stick with markings and carvings to highlight events that have influenced their lives.”

Mandle explains that a true “folk school” is based on a Danish principle in which people learn for the sake of learning, not to earn course credit. Some classes are set over a specific time frame but most classes are for a day to appeal to locals as well as visitors.

“The property is located on one of the most beautiful spots on the Hudson,” says Mandle. “It is the last free-flowing spot where the Hudson is untouched. Rockwell Falls is where we hold some of our painting classes.”

“The core idea of the Adirondack Folk School is to keep the Adirondack crafts alive,” says Mandle. “We just celebrated our one year anniversary on June 5th. We have a course catalog available. In the beginning I made a list of ideas for classes and sought out those instructors. Other people have since come to us and asked if they could teach a class. I am amazed what has happened in the past year.”

Mandle encourages people to just drop by and see the new blacksmith forge and maybe even get an opportunity to become a blacksmith for the day. With the addition of the outdoor pavilion the event will happen rain or shine.

The Adirondack Folk School is located on Main Street in Lake Luzerne. Offering over a hundred classes in traditional Adirondack folk art, there is bound to be something for everyone.
Make sure to check their schedule of events for free summer events such as Saturday Evening Campfire-Sing-Along and July 2nd Anniversary Party.

photo: students participating in Adirondack Folk School blacksmithing class
photo credit: Jim Mandle, Adirondack Folk School



content © Diane Chase, Adirondack Family Activities ™. Diane is the author of the Adirondack Family Activities Guidebook Series including the recent released Adirondack Family Time: Tri-Lakes and High Peaks Your Guide to Over 300 Activities for Lake Placid, Saranac Lake, Tupper Lake, Keene, Jay and Wilmington areas (with GPS coordinates) This is the first book of a four-book series of Adirondack Family Activities™. The next three editions will cover Plattsburgh to Ticonderoga, Long Lake to Old Forge and Newcomb to Lake George. 

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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.




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