Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Saranac Lake’s Daffest Coincides With Mother’s Day

IMG_6423Springtime in the Adirondacks can get a bad reputation sometimes, thanks to the black flies and muddy trails. For my family, spring is an opportunity to witness change, even if that change comes with some bug bites and dirty shoes.

We have played hard during the winter. Now we’re looking for some colorful indicators that the cold weather is behind us and summer is around the corner.

Native wild flowers, like marsh marigolds or the trout lily, are part of Mother Nature’s subtle approach to brightening spring.  The thousands of bright yellow daffodils planted for Saranac Lake’s Daffest are the much bolder approach by humans.

There are a variety of daffodil festivals around the country, but Saranac Lake is definitely the Daffodil center of the Adirondack Park. This year’s Daffest coincides with Mother’s Day and organizers have events planned for everyone in the family.

Cinco de Mayo kicks off a series of events from the annual Wigmore Garden Tour to a Thursday Night Art Walk and Pub Crawl/Poker Run. The Wigmore Garden tour has limited availability for participants to view over 5,000 daffodils, thousands of other flowers and prize hard and soft wood trees. Live music and demonstrations are just part of the Art Walk while local businesses are set to to give away electric guitars, beach bikes and other great prizes.

Historic Saranac Lake’s walking tour to the Bartok Cabin starts Friday, May 6 at 10:30 am from the Riverside Park bandshell. Participants will stroll along Lake Flower and learn about Saranac Lake cure cottages as well as some of the famous residents. That evening join Soma Beats for a free Cabin Fever Cure dance party at Dewey Mountain Recreation Center.

It wouldn’t be Daffest without Saturday’s soapbox derby. The event participation has doubled over the years with over 150 children participating in the four age groups. For those wishing to challenge someone else, ask about grudge matches. It’s also just as fun to cheer on the races and stroll around looking at all the unique, cleverly built cars.

Getting fit for hiking season can start with the Daffest 5K Sunday, May 8. The race starts at the Adirondack Carousel and continues through beautiful historic Saranac and back to the carousel. After running a 5K your mother may be interested in some local food or a ride on the carousel. Some nontraditional Mother’s Day gifts can be a fun afternoon at either The Brushery or Pendragon Theatre. The Brushery is offering a Paint and Drink for $40. Another wonderful gift is Pendragon Theatre Mother’s Day Cabaret on Sunday at 2 pm. Admission is $10, but mothers are free for this show featuring a catalog of traditional, Broadway and popular songs.

Daffest is a relaxing, fun-filled festival with the main focus on spending time with friends and family. Happy Mother’s Day!

Photo of Daffest used with the permission of Diane Chase,



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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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