Sunday, July 19, 2020

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Melissa is a journalist with experience as a reporter and editor with the Burlington Free Press, Ithaca Journal and Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. She worked as a communications specialist for the Adirondack North Country Association and is currently digital editor for Adirondack Explorer, overseeing both the Explorer's website and its community forum the Adirondack Almanack. She enjoys hiking, camping and other outdoors activities, and spending time with her husband, their twin daughters, and rescue animals -- two dogs and two cats.

4 Responses

  1. Earlier in May and the first week of June I observed that the wildflowers near me, and most particularly at the Paul Smiths VIC, bloomed weeks later than usual. Something up ?

    Also, and perhaps inaccurately, I think the the yellow swallowtail butterflies are smaller this year. Does the size of butterflies vary from year to year ?

    Please encourage people to document and write the histories of their hamlets. I can say that it is a most rewarding thing to do, and it needs doing.

    With gratitude for all your articles,


    • Tom Vawter says:

      With regard to the size of the swallowtail butterflies, is it just your impression that they are smaller or do you or someone have comparative measurements? Our abundant swallowtails are typically Canadian Tiger Swallowtails (Papilio canadensis) that have only fairly recently been recognized as different from the more southern and wide spread Eastern Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus). The reason for my question is that size is one of the characteristics that tends to vary between the Eastern and the Canadian Swallowtails.

      It’s also my impression from here in the Old Forge area that the Monarchs are not as numerous as last year, but it’s still early.

      Cheers, Tom Vawter

      • Yes, Tom, ours are Canadian. However, my observations are simply naked eye, not scientific. Like you, here in Onchiota I have seen fewer monarchs than last year so far.

        Happy days,


  2. Tom Vawter says:


    With regard to events and activities in areas around the North Country, I’d like to suggest the TRX exercise classes conducted, in Old Forge, by Joanne Young, DPT, at ADK Fitness. Joanne offers classes at various times during the week for people at various levels and ages. We are part of a small group of older people (50s to 70s) for whom twice-weekly exercise classes have been part of our routine for 7 or 8 years. Folks we’ve met through ADK Fitness classes have also enlarged our social network, which is a parallel health benefit, especially for older people.

    We see the availability Joanne’s classes as a healthy outlet, especially for the many older people living in our area, and we think many around us would benefit from knowing about those classes. Joanne maintains a Facebook group for information:

    Tom Vawter

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