Last time Amy and I were at Lost Brook Tract we were talking about how to promote the Adirondack Region to people who know little or nothing about it. The default approach for decades has been to promote it as something like Vermont, the Berkshires or the Poconos: cozy resorts, Adirondack chairs, pretty scenery, shopping, tourist sites and an overriding rustic chic. That’s all well and good, but in a time when more and more people crave mountains and wild places, when camping and hiking are the leading recreational pursuits, I have wondered why we don’t try to promote the Adirondacks in a different way.
As many of you know, outside the region few people know about the Adirondacks at all. Even here in the Northeast, the vast majority of people have no idea that the Adirondack Park is a superlative wilderness area, with grandeur and unspoiled land to match any state in the union outside of Alaska. Elsewhere, wilderness and mountains sell; they generate a lot of visitation. What if people identified our Forest Preserve as wild and mountainous, instead of just scenic and a good place for a getaway? They could: we have quite a story to tell.
I’ve written about this topic before in several columns. But after our last chat at Lost Brook Tract I decided that instead of just talking about it I should take one of my “What if we did this…” brainstorms and try something, a little prototype promotional application that might dumbfound people who don’t know what we have here.
In this modern social media world people love visuals and interaction. So I decided to make a “quiz,” a thing people could click through and then be surprised at the real answers. I put together a prototype in Powerpoint. It is rough right now – it needs branding, it needs some pizazz and it needs a payoff that links to lots of additional information including other promotional Adirondack web sites. But it is sufficient to gather some feedback. That’s what I’m hoping to get from you fine readers.
I’ve embedded the Powerpoint below so that you can download and run it. Take a look! Try to put yourself in the perspective of someone who is not familiar with the Adirondacks. I’ve used some facts about the Adirondack region that most people do not know in order to create comparative surprises versus other states in the country. If you already know these things then the impact upon you will be nil. But imagine the potential impact upon people who don’t know.
That said, many of you may not know all of them. Here they are:
- The Adirondack Park is by far the largest wilderness park in the Continental United States
- Indian Pass has the largest wall in the Northeast and has one of the world’s largest talus cave systems (if not the largest)
- The Hudson River (and the Boquet and Moose Rivers as well) produces class IV – V whitewater in the spring
- Whiteface has the tenth most skiable vertical of any ski resort in the Continental United States
- The Adirondack Park harbors the world’s largest intact temperate deciduous forest
- The Adirondack Park contains more than 3,000 lakes, three times the number in the Boundary Waters in Minnesota
- The Adirondack region is part of a UNESCO International Biosphere Reserve and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site
Here’s the Powerpoint: Adirondack Promotional Quiz Temporary Version
Play it as a slideshow to get the proper effect. Note that checking a check box is possible but right now it doesn’t do anything. The “Next” buttons do work, however. I will be upgrading it over the next few days, so expect a few changes if you look at it later.
Let me know what you think about this concept, good or bad. Thanks!
Photo: High Peaks overlook, Newcomb, sunrise.