Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Free, Safe Rides On New Year’s Eve

218737_210356059004270_7993250_oI’ve participated in my fair share of New Year’s Eve ball drops and celebrations. I’ve certainly taken my champagne toast in the New Year.  I have also witnessed family and friends make their share of poor decisions. Thankfully no one was ever hurt.

The concept of taking keys from party-goers and being a designated driver is not a new concept, though drinking and driving is still prevalent. Not to get too preachy, but once the celebration starts the decision on how you are getting home should already be made. So to help with the process, below are a few of the free public ride share options available.

According to Long Lake’s Town Supervisor Clark Seaman, the town’s Little Bus should be up and running for New Year’s Eve. If not there will be a different safe option for people choosing to celebrate around the Long Lake area on December 31st. Call (518) 624-3077 to reserve a space.

“We’ve had the Little Bus for more than 10 years now. Even before the Little Bus we provided safe rides for New Year’s Eve,” says Seaman. “The board feels that providing a free safe transportation option is a valuable service for the community.”

Anyone ringing in the New Year in Old Forge or Thendara should contact MAC’s Safe Ride at (315) 369-8121. The areas covered are Old Forge, Thendara, Route 28 north to Daikers, Route 28 south to Okara Lakes, and the lower portion of South Shore Road. This program was initiated in 2010 after an alcohol-related incident claimed the lives of Matt and Craig, two young men from the Old Forge area. Now this service hopes to keep anyone drinking out of the driver’s seat and the roads safe for everyone.

Tupper Lake recently started its own Mac’s Safe Ride Continued that will now provide free rides for people in the village and surrounding area of Tupper Lake. Call (518) 304-3282.

Businesses around Inlet and Eagle Bay are once again sponsoring the Champagne Bus on December 31-January 1, from 8 pm – 2 am. The bus is free and provides nine designated stops: Seventh Lake House, Drake’s Inn, The Ole Barn , Screamin’ Eagle, Red Dog Tavern, The Woods Inn, The Tavern, Northwoods Inn, and Daikers. Call (315) 357-5501 during the designated hours. The Champagne Bus will make unscheduled stops if requested.

Other towns around the Adirondacks are great for walking so just leave the car at the house or hotel for the night and call a cab. If you know of other free ride services in the Adirondack Park, please add them in the comments below.

Be safe and Happy New Year!

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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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