Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Fall Festival at Essex’s Lakeside School

Fall-Fun-Festival-2015When I first moved to the Adirondacks I found a wonderful Waldorf-initative called  Northern Lights School, now located in Saranac Lake. My children were constantly shown the importance of play in the natural world.  At that time, Northern Lights was the only Waldorf School located within the Adirondack Park.

Nine years ago The Lakeside School at Black Kettle Farm in Essex, NY joined the Adirondack Waldorf community and continues to grow and expand while providing a creative learning environment for young children.

According to Lakeside School Administrator Jess Wimett the Fifth Annual Fall Fun Festival on November 7 from 1-4 pm has evolved from a school fundraiser to a “friend raiser,” with the focus on interacting with the community.

“We shifted to see what we could do to meet people from the area,” says Wimett. “This event is open to the public and most of the activities are free. We do have vendors selling their products, but there are also children’s games, pony rides, face painting , a bon fire and live music.”

The Fall Fun Festival activities aren’t just for people with small children. Russ Bailey will be on site with blacksmith demonstrations and there will be a working cider press on hand. For anyone looking to fill out their young ones’ winter wardrobe, check out the Trading Post for used children’s clothes and outdoor gear.

“An interesting development for the school is we now have a farmer converting the grounds right outside the school into a biodynamic farm,” says Wimett. “Biodynamics is a piece of Waldorf School philosophy with a spiritual reference to the land. It is a holistic, ecological and ethical understanding of agriculture that takes in every piece that we have with the landscape.“

While enjoying The Lakeside School’s Fall Festival, don’t forget to check out the nearby Champlain Area Trails (CATS). Wimett assures me that trails are safe during hunting season since the nearby trails are a smaller piece of conserved land that is part of the Eddy Foundation.

The Lakeside School at Black Kettle Farm is located on the corner of Cook and Leaning Roads in Essex.  Even though my children have long graduated from their Waldorf school, they still love to attend these festivities that help celebrate the change of seasons. I’m sure your family will as well. Enjoy!


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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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