Saturday, June 27, 2020

Survey: Adirondackers split on welcoming back visitors

In a survey of more than 1,000 Adirondack residents, two-thirds thought it was safe to move around their own community, and 45 percent said it was safe to welcome back tourists and visitors

Prior to phase 3 of New York States reopening process, ROOST (The Regional Office of New York Tourism) released a Resident Sentiment Survey to gain a better understanding of the comfort level of North Country residents regarding reopening the economy and getting society back on track.

The information collected went to local business owners and partners of ROOST in order to help create reopening plans, set policy, and prioritize projects accordingly. The survey also contained open-ended questions regarding activities like shopping, dining, attending events, and welcoming visitors.

ROOST found residents wanted tourists and travelers to have reasonable expectations upon arrival, and that most locals were comfortable traveling to neighboring communities and that increasing education and signage on social distancing and mask wearing was appreciated in large. Around two-thirds though it was safe to move around their own community, 45% said it was safe to welcome back tourists and visitors, and 33% said the opposite. Within residents’ own communities, a majority stated that they were comfortable shopping, dining, and visiting attractions, but less than 50% said they would visit larger scale events. 79% of respondents were full time Adirondack residents, while 21% owned seasonal and 2nd homes within the Blue Line. There were exactly 1,165 responses representing 87 different postal codes within the region.

ROOST Chief of Staff Mary Jane Lawrence said the following about the survey and its responses: “We recognized early on there needed to be a focus on the health and wellness of the community and to help the visitors understand the importance of following the guidelines set forth by the state. This has been reinforced by what has been found in the survey, we are excited that people have been very receptive to the ‘Politely Adirondack’ messaging regarding
social distancing and mask wearing. They are helping our visitors know what to expect when they arrive, and residents and business owners appreciate the fact that tourists will be following the guidelines.”

To view the full results of the survey, as well as the numerous resources ROOST has made available to North Country Businesses during the pandemic, visit the following links. http://www.roostadk.com/toolkit, https://www.roostadk.com/updates

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38 Responses

  1. Steven says:

    With NYS DEC campgrounds still not accepting new reservations, my family has made alternative plans for this summer. We’ll explore state parks in the Finger Lakes and Allegheny National Forest in PA. We’re sad to miss the Adirondacks this year, but we can’t wait forever since we get specific weeks off for vacation at work. I don’t see why the DEC is moving slower than State parks, or private camps for that matter.

  2. David says:

    I would like to buy a copy of the recent issue that published an article by Sandra Hildreth. Are you digital only?

  3. Charlie S says:

    I don’t see why the DEC is moving slower than State parks, or private camps for that matter.”

    Maybe because they’re playing it smart Steven. Look at what’s happening around the country since states began hurriedly opening up.

    • Lenny says:

      Could you please clarify your thoughts of “playing it smart” with “verified science”. My sources of science and expertise on this pandemic are yet only hypothesizing on what is going on with this seemingly new uptick (or if it really is uptick or just more and better tracing/testing…or maybe the numbers are being conspiringly hijack in someone’s agenda?!). Hence the word “seemingly” because there is still ongoing expert conversation in scrutiny and debate. In meantime, our local businesses (not only dependent on being open to us spending our $$ locally year-round, but also the seasonal tourism $$ boost in the pants needed to ensure they are open for us when the tourists aren’t around) are going under. Maybe not crucial to your livelihood, but it is to me and others (I haven’t made my million dollar retirement goal yet). You have option then…yes, to include staying home and/or away from the “dirty tourists” if able and being safe in some sort of meaningful and creative self-imposed quarantine like many of us are doing for the time being. It’s not that big a sacrifice. The economy needs to be open….including DEC campgrounds.

      • Boreas says:

        “Seemingly new uptick”????? Talk to the people in the hospitals admitting the new COVID patients. It isn’t imaginary – it is terribly real. This is no damn hoax! You are intentionally ignoring the situation just to create an irresponsible argument for opening. You should be ashamed. An increase in hospitalizations will lead to an increase in deaths and long-term disease in the survivors – but this time across the country at nearly the same time! The north country has been lucky so far. How far should we push it? It is literally closing in on us!

        • Lenny says:

          Sorry if I triggered you Boreas. Maybe read and ‘read into’ the message again if you assume I was talking HOAX and not REALITY. Granted, there may be some implied deception of others in my words, but I can’t verify, although I and others suspect it is….if those others are truly malicious in action/cause or not. Nor do I think many in our realm of truest pandemic expertise can ascertain such yet either. Too many open questions not being answered or being deceitfully answered. Why? Hence, perhaps the state of cunfusion that even you and I appear to be at loggerhead about here (I’m confused by what seems to be your confusion to my rants after I read your comments to Brandon Loomis’s March 19th story on Covid and the ADK visitor. You seem in my simple mindedness, to be contradicting those recorded thoughts here now). I use the word “yet” here, like I used the word “seemingly” beforehand, as I would bet that down the road, maybe not anytime soon, history will show those in positional power with axe to grind and agendas to fill, to have used this whole pandemic as a means to their ‘wants’. And that Boreas, in thought to who loses unnessecarily in the end of all this, is sad for me anyway to think about. And if that is what YOU consider a hoax in my theory…that’s your privilege. The ‘numbers game’ being witnessed in other parts the Country, should be taken with caution IMO. The Covid pandemic sky is not falling and about to kill us all off all of a sudden, a positive Covid test does not equal a guaranteed positive Covid death (or negative one for that matter I guess?!), the Adirondacks is not population center Florida or California, and waging a finger at someone’s opinion is not going to change much of anything. Point in original rant, is that I myself would prefer taking very, very, very slim proven chance of ultimate death of Covid in doing my part in opening our society than die a slow, guaranteed death from starvation because my government said I can’t work and had to hide under my rock to prove their political prowess in ideology and votes against the other team. I will stand by my thoughts as originally written. Second, you confuse me further still in that, “You (me) are intentionally creating an irresponsible argument for opening.” Something I humorously note that if I was, you certainly took to without pause (I have been noted for my great skills in fishing though….and this is an opinion page in which sparking debate is allowable isn’t it). But again, your assumed direction now seemingly contrary in comments of reasoning to your March comments (which I suggest we all look back to that interesting article and it’s readers comments in what it may actually be supportive in relationship to what I am speaking to here now in these rants….and in some of you in accuracy to your ealier diaolog of the ADK Covid future now that months of evidence have past. For like you, without crystal ball to read the future of Covid and opening back up, I may regret saying these words now sometime down the road…..especially if karma finds me (in what you describe should be my “shame”) and I am struck in death soon after hitting the send button here). Bottom line Boreas, some of us are prepared to get back up on the ever unpredictable and rough horse of life and cautiously try to live it in the risk. I understand others are not ready. I understand some can’t be ready (those of highest risk category). I am…..and you sound like your’re not…and that is OK. So in your question to “how far do we push?” I’m not sure, but there are only limited number of ways we are going to find out. I offer to be your sacrificial lamb to the ‘opening test’ if you can just be patience in meantime, not panic, tell the government to back off and think beyond themselves, and finally, try your best in your health and safety to support your Adirondack neighbors in their effort to do survive. We all might be surprised in outcome! Last word to you Boreas.

          P.S. – As a newcomer here, has anyone before ever mentioned on this site that you may be wrong?

  4. Vanessa says:

    Interesting survey! But I wonder if everyone will still feel the same way in 2-3 weeks. We’re just starting a bad wave of infections thanks to (OPINION ALERT) poor policy choices in the south and southwest. Next few weeks won’t exactly be awesome for most of the country. :(:(

    It’s fortunate that the northeast is doing better! Let’s hope we stay that way. As I’ve said before, we’re electing not to come until fall, to give everything more time to play out.

    • Nora says:

      I agree with Vanessa , I live about 11 miles north of Lake George and also live in a community where allot of second home owners rent out their places during the summer, we are packed with folks who want to get away that are here from the city and New Jersey who think we are a safe place to vacation . They are going about their business with no worries in the world . I am seeing folks that have come back from Florida after the winter and are not isolating themselves .

      I am also concerned as to how the figures will be in a few weeks .

  5. Kathy says:

    Just finished reading the survey and wondered if there was a breakdown of age and private citizen or business owner responses.

  6. Boreas says:

    US citizens are split on every issue – nothing different in the Adirondacks. With two opposing media streams and no clear direction from government, the country is without a rudder. My personal opinion is for Park residents to take direction from the most consistent sources of guidance available to us – our governor and the CDC.

    People in other states who did not heed a strong shutdown and now are experiencing spikes in infection now want to travel here. People with 2nd homes should be welcomed with the caveat if they come from an are of spiking infection, they should be willing to quarantine. Casual tourism from high infection areas should be discouraged. Park residents were spared from much of the disease during mud season and the total shutdown, but this problem is going to be ongoing for a year or more. We are still at risk, and no longer are NYC residents a major source of the risk. This spring, most NYC residents were terrified and understood the risk of spreading the disease to other areas with casual travel. We can’t assume people from other areas of the nation and other nations who have been led to believe all is safe to do what they wish will be as cautious as NY residents are. Unfortunately, it will ultimately be up to Park residents to protect ourselves. Hopefully signage and precaution will be sufficient, but we need to be acting on a united front. Squabbling between ourselves and hand-wringing isn’t going to keep us safe.

  7. Charlie S says:

    “We can’t assume people from other areas of the nation and other nations who have been led to believe all is safe to do what they wish will be as cautious as NY residents are.”

    This is a very narcissistic society Boreas as you well know…it’s about the man, or woman, in the mirror. Some people just don’t care what you think or anybody else for that matter. I went into Dicks Sporting Goods last week to find a pair of walking boots. Evidently there’s no such thing….hiking boots only. There’s a difference tween the two…it’s in the soles. Most people are wearing masks but there’s those certain few who do not wish to be told what to do because……freedom and the Constitution. True patriots!

    As I was walking into Dicks with my mask on, a burly man with a determined look walked in ahead of me with no mask covering his face. Fine but! What about those of us who are concerned about catching a bug? The stores I generally frequent everyone wears a mask…. it’s a must, a sign at the entry says so. Not Dicks (a store I rarely visit.) I called them up and brought this up to the man who picked up the phone and he said, “I’m not going to tell a customer he has to wear a mask….” Why not? Other stores are doing it! Most of them are! Why not you? Money first with Dicks, not the well-being of other customers. What else can it be?

    We’re split alright Boreas and it’s more than a hairline fissure. I understand the concerns with residents in Adirondack communities regards this coronavirus pandemic and narcissist’ visiting from who knows where! This bug is hardly next to over. Heck…it has just begun, unless of course they come up with a vaccine which hopefully won’t coincide with the upcoming election a distant four months away.

    The roads are busy again, traffic is heavy first time in months and wouldn’t you know…pollution levels are starting to rise all over again. Business as usual! My sympathies go out to those placid souls who live in the Adirondacks thinking they’re away from ‘it’ all. No such thing no matter where we are! One world,one race, one big mess we’re in! At the very least we should have become aware by now how all is interconnected, that there are too many people on this fragile planet, and that our demands can accommodate only so much. A change has been a-coming for far too long. Is this it? Time will tell. If this pandemic ends too soon it will most certainly be business as usual afterwards…to the detriment of all that is meaningful, beautiful, fruitful, poetical, musical, wonderful……..

    • Boreas says:

      Charlie,

      I don’t know how you responded to the man on the phone at Dick’s, but I would have responded, “You now have one less conscientious customer, and I know at least 10 other conscientious customers. Soon, NONE of your customers will be wearing masks – if you have customers at all.” I would also follow up with a call or letter to Dick’s corporate office. That’s about all we can do as citizens. There is no eradicating stupid.

      • Lenny says:

        “There is no eradicating stupid”….Boreas, in all due respect, according to my 7th grade teacher who purposely removed all the warning labels from every hazardous appliance in her classroom…yes there is! She was happy to move me on to the 8th grade at school year’s end (minus the end of my right pinky only….Billy G. wasn’t so lucky…and remains sadly missed by all).

    • Boreas says:

      Oh, and Charlie, I would also ask the head Dick on the phone, “Hey, why no walking shoes?? Are all of your customers under 40? Us old farts are one of the few demographics nowadays with any disposable income! Ignore us at your peril!”

      • Steve B. says:

        An easy reply is to remind them that the customers that do not feel safe in the store because they will not enforce state law, means more people ordering on-line. They soon will go the way of Macy’s, JC Penney, etc… and Mr. Manager will be doing the late shift at a 7-11.

        • Lenny says:

          I was a manager of a 7-11 once! Great time in my life! Met some fantastic people. We never sold “walking shoes” though (whatever specifically designed footware they are?…kinda sounds like a rip-off. Can you optionally go to work in them or wear them in leisure to church with a suit and tie?). But maybe we should have if they are that difficult to find. It’s in the “souls” you say?! And speaking of narcissism Charlie, why the need to let us know you “rarely” visit/shop Dick’s? Are you sensitive to a reputation in where you shop in the eyes of others? Couldn’t one deem that as being a little bit narcissistic in and of itself…maybe? Anyhow, I take your comments in some degree Charlie to mean you want the Adirondacks free of others’ (aka tourists) enjoyment, and therefore likely all to yourself. I’m wrong often, so maybe I am in this sense too. Just that I get confused in my own combined simplicity and lack of oxygen from being a burley man wearing a mask, to why there are some choosing to live in the Adirondacks, a place of near economic exclusion to the tourism industry that puts the food on the table, roof on the house, and kids off to expensive college in hopes of a better existence than ours, who then want exclusive ‘no-trespassing’ hermit rights and privileges to those same Adirondacks to boot?! I realize it would be nice if the tourist would just send us their money without showing up to crowd us, but it doesn’t work that way. I assume and accept my standard of living is built on the tourism thoughts and actions of generations before me (and a sincere thank you to them for doing a great job). Short the small and productively temporary thought of cutting all the timber in the Adirondacks down in sale for lumber and fuel, tourism is the what carries the region for those of us lucky enough to live here. I cannot expect the old jobs at Oval Wood Dish Company in Tupper Lake will likely be back anytime soon. I suppose there is (or was once) option in this too though…move cross country to the nation of Chop-Chaz. Word is, there is abundance of like-minded urban hermit holdouts there looking for hosts to move in with ASAP.

    • Tom Boone says:

      “If this pandemic ends too soon it will most certainly be business as usual afterwards…” So Charlie S you want the pandemic to continue and more people to become ill and possibly die.

      Wow, you must be real important to wish that on others. If you want it to continue why do you care if anyone wears a mask? Or do you crave attention by calling Dicks to complain.

      Take a look in the mirror, narcissistic much?

      • Dana says:

        Did we read the same comment?? Odd that you came away with that ridiculous conclusion.

        • Tom Boone says:

          “A change has been a-coming for far too long. Is this it? Time will tell. If this pandemic ends too soon it will most certainly be business as usual afterwards…to the detriment of all that is meaningful, beautiful, fruitful, poetical, musical, wonderful……..”

          Sounds like he wants it to continue so all things meaningful will be harmed by business as usual.

          That’s how it reads to me. I am entitled to my opinion. Calling my conclusion ridiculous is ridiculous.

          • Boreas says:

            Yes, you are entitled to your opinion. But I too feel it is an absurd conclusion, and that is my opinion.

            • JohnL says:

              Sorry Dana/Boreas. In my humble opinion, based on having read this one, and a LOT of Charlies other posts, I’m afraid I have to agree with Tom. Charlie would like to be alone in the north woods. And, deep down, I think you know we’re right. I suppose it’s within the realm of possibility that we’re wrong, but I don’t think so.

      • Sula says:

        Tom,

        You are misreading Charlie’s comment. He is not wishing the pandemic to continue, but rather that basic precautions continue so that more people do not become ill. If you have been paying attention to the news lately you may have noted that those places (Florida, Texas, Arizona) which relaxed restrictions and reopened too soon are experiencing an alarming spike in new infections and their hospitals are swamped. These places are now reconsidering their initial optimism.

        I’d call Dick’s, too (if I went there–I’ll stick with LL Bean) because their attitude is rude, dismissive and irreponsible. Their name says it all.

        • Lenny says:

          Sula, Sula, Sula…..shame on that last paragraph of comments. “Dick’s” is not referencing the beautiful male reproductive appendage responsible for 50% of your being here in comment (don’t forget mom)! The name came from founder Dick Slack who started the company in Binghamton, NY at 18 years of age in 1948 with a $300.00 loan from his grandmother. Talk about an American entrepreneurial success story! Wow! Turned the business over to his kids some time later and they have been responsible for shelling out millions upon millions of dollars in partnerships and sponsorships to all sorts of groups and causes from earliest of youth sports programs right up to the Olympics and Paralympics. 850 stores with over 30,000 employed. To be able to judge such a company so harshly, ‘ol Dick and I can’t help but ask how many jobs you’ve created or amount of contributions donated in community cause as a philanthropist in your lifetime thus far?

          • Sula says:

            I did not make reference to the “beautiful male reproductive appendage,” it was you brought up that rather unnecessary subject. “Dick Slack?” Hahaha, really?

            I don’t believe that I was judging the company harshly, just the rude associate who dismissed Charlie’s legitimate complaint.

            As an elderly person living on Social Security, I donate what I can for community causes. If you are able to do more, you are to be commended for your charity.

            • Lenny says:

              Hi Sula. I’ll let the other two readers here determine what you meant by your original comments on “appendage” and to the Dick’s Sports judgement. I read it differently. I guess that is why I’m not very good at this “opinions” thing. To much work assuming the difference between what people write and what the actually met. Sorry if you felt I misrepresented your words/thoughts Sula.

              And apologies to you, Dick Slack, Dick Stack, and the two other readers. The founder of Dick’s is actually Mr. Dick Stack…..Not Dick Slack as written (same details though). Dick Slack was an Army corporal I knew from days gone by. I recall he a fondness for pigeons. Always carried around pictures in his wallet of the different breeds he raised in hobby like they were his kids. Talk about them all the time like that Bubba character taking about the shrimp on Forect Gump. Last I heard, he was somewhere out around Vegas married to his third wife and rich as heck operating a community pigeon petting zoo. Whatever that is?! Anyhow, sorry again to all the Dicks.

              And glad to hear you are a person of retirement. I’m sure you have earned it and thank you for your contributions, no matter what size, laid at the feet of society in making it a much better place for me, my family and all the rest of us. In appreciation, I will continue to try to do the same (if Covid would leave us alone). In meantime Sula, stay safe in masking up and washing those hands regularly (you never know when one of those “dirty tourists” others talk about around the ADK has touched something in their Covid travels). We’ll get through this eventually.

  8. Zephyr says:

    It is not where someone is from but how they act that is the factor. A local trucker who drives to Florida and back could be the spreader just as easily as the tourist from New Jersey. Age seems to be more of a factor than where they live–a lot of younger people are being reckless, while older people are taking precautions. But, again, it is not where someone is from, but what they are doing. Basically, you will be pretty safe if you just avoid indoor crowds, wash our hands a lot, and wear a mask yourself. Myself, I case out any business I need to go into before parking and going inside. If it looks busy, I avoid it, particularly if it is someplace like a restaurant where people will be lingering without masks on. Very little evidence of spread outdoors or from surfaces.

    • Steve B. says:

      The percentages are that a person from any of the 8 states named by NY., CT., and NJ are 8 times more likely than a NYC metro area resident to be a CV carrier. Most travel by plane and that’s where the tri-states are cracking down, with the airlines.

      From what I’m reading, Maine is still requiring a 14 day quarantine period for other than Maine, NH and VT. residents. They have the hotels and rentals require proof of a negative test in the previous 72 hrs. With Canada still closed, the tourism industry is hurting but the state government is not letting down their guard. The situations in Texas, Florida, etc….. lends proof that their approach is the correct one.

      • Zephyr says:

        I suspect almost nobody is following the quarantine suggestions states have made. I personally know people who ignored the rules, but they were careful and didn’t cause any outbreaks. Unfortunately, we are dependent on good people taking care in order to make up for all the careless people ignoring health regulations and commonsense. It doesn’t matter what state or region they are from. For example, I am much less worried about someone returning from Florida who has been careful for weeks than I am about some knucklehead from my town going to a Trump rally where masks are frowned upon and the crowd is thick.

  9. Charlie S says:

    “Us old farts”

    Speak for yourself Boreas! My body may be degenerating, which may hint of my age, but my psyche reminds me on a daily base that Huckleberry Finn is still alive and well within!

  10. Charlie S says:

    Tom Boone says: “If this pandemic ends too soon it will most certainly be business as usual afterwards…”

    “So Charlie S you want the pandemic to continue and more people to become ill and possibly die. Wow, you must be real important to wish that on others. If you want it to continue why do you care if anyone wears a mask? Or do you crave attention by calling Dicks to complain.Take a look in the mirror, narcissistic much?”

    > I said, “If this pandemic ends too soon it will most certainly be business as usual afterwards…” Where do you get that I wish for more people to get sick and die? Your eyes must be blurry. Personally I do not care if anybody wears a mask or not that’s their thing…just an awareness is all and I do have my own thoughts on matters not that anybody really cares what I think!

    It’s always business as usual Tom, and always too soon we forget. Amnesia! Is why we’re in the mess we’re in. I think about those generations yet to be…twenty years from now, a hundred years from now, two hundred years, which isn’t really that far away when considering the grand scheme of things. Just think how much more damage we can do in just ten years never mind 200 years Tom! I doubt the Earth will still be alive by then, or it will be minus humans anyway, which is very sad but what are you gonna do! Or it will be a cesspool with mindless inhabitants controlled by the few. We’re close to that now! I really do wonder what kind of mess we are going to leave behind for those generations yet to be Tom….narcissist me!

    • Tom Boone says:

      Your rant is meandering. You go from Dick’s Sporting goods to Amnesia to the end of the Earth.

      But hey its your opinion and your entitled to it. That is the great thing about the U.S.A.

      Have a great Independence Day!

  11. Charlie S says:

    Lenny says: ” And speaking of narcissism Charlie, why the need to let us know you “rarely” visit/shop Dick’s? Are you sensitive to a reputation in where you shop in the eyes of others?”

    Because it’s the truth Lenny! Would you rather me lie and be deceitful? I do what I do for me Lenny, and I don’t say that out of vanity, nor do I do what I do to impress others as I can care less what anybody thinks of me trust me when I tell you so! I happen to like the man I see in the mirror, I am perfectly content in who he is.

  12. Charlie S says:

    Lenny says: “I take your comments in some degree Charlie to mean you want the Adirondacks free of others’ (aka tourists) enjoyment, and therefore likely all to yourself. I’m wrong often, so maybe I am in this sense too.”

    You ‘are’ wrong Lenny which is alright by me, not a big deal….and besides, that is one big wild space to have all for me-self, especially so were I to become lost!

  13. Charlie S says:

    JohnL says: “Sorry Dana/Boreas. In my humble opinion, based on having read this one, and a LOT of Charlies other posts, I’m afraid I have to agree with Tom. Charlie would like to be alone in the north woods. And, deep down, I think you know we’re right. I suppose it’s within the realm of possibility that we’re wrong, but I don’t think so.”

    You are wrong JohnL and that’s okay! It really is!

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