Saturday, June 26, 2021

Indian Lake banners celebrate diversity

indian lake bannerSoon visitors, permanent and summer residents and travelers along NYS Routes 28/30 will be greeted with banners welcoming everyone to the Town of Indian Lake.  The banners read “All Are Welcome Here” followed by the new Indian Lake Logo and multicolored hand-prints framing the perimeter. 

The banners are the result of a partnership between the Indian Lake Equality and Justice Committee (Committee) and the Indian Lake Town Council (Board).  Funding for the banners is coming from private and organizational donations.  The Town Highway Department will install the banners on designated utility poles.  

In response to numerous events demonstrating racial intolerance both at the national and regional level, a resolution was proposed and approved last July by the Board endorsing the Town’s commitment to be a welcoming, inclusive and safe community for all.  In part, the resolution reads:  “WHEREAS, it is essential that the Town of Indian Lake commits itself to ensuring equality, equal justice and opportunity for all regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation”.  The resolution further encourages all residents to take actions to support that goal.   

The Committee was formed to demonstrate through the creation and sponsorship of activities, that our community is truly committed to equality and justice for all.  In addition to the Banner Project, the Committee was an active participant in the Hamilton County Police Reform and Reinvention Collaboration Plan; providing input to the plan by suggesting additional considerations to include the use of body cameras and policies for their use.  As the Committee moves forward it will partner with the County, Town, community organizations, local businesses, religious institutions and the Indian Lake Central School to enhance awareness of social issues and to be more tolerant and welcoming toward others different from ourselves.  

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12 Responses

  1. louis curth says:

    Hats off to the good people of the Town of Indian Lake!

    Too many other Adirondack towns and villages are to sleepwalking into the future, but Indian Lake is showing the way forward by welcoming greater resident and recreational user diversity there. As the census will soon remind us yet again, America’s future includes increasing diversity.

    Thank you Indian Lake for setting a wonderful example, and showing us all a better way forward.

  2. Plow Boy says:

    Hats off to Indian Lake a town trying to hold on building on their future for themselves and their children

  3. Sunny Day says:

    Thank goodness they didn’t decide to change the name of the town, because “Indian” might be offensive to some.

  4. Susan says:

    So unnecessary. I wonder who the “organizational” donations came from.

  5. Charlie Stehlin says:

    “Soon visitors, permanent and summer residents and travelers along NYS Routes 28/30 will be greeted with banners welcoming everyone to the Town of Indian Lake.”

    I can see where this is going. Ten years from now the locals, or the old-timers, will be seeing their once quiet community just another familiar place filled with people who bring their urban ways with them and every ‘thing’ else associated with such…mistrust of their fellow beings, partisan divisions, etc… and most of all, depending on who they are, their cultural ways, or differences, which surely won’t be like what the Adirondacks is accustomed to. It could go two ways…favorable or oft-repeated mumblings from the natives such as, “I miss the quiet, less complex way of living we once had.”

    The above line reminds me of all the advertising the State threw money towards some few years back to get ‘everybody’ up to the High Peaks “Come one come all!”…..and look what happened! As the old saying goes, “Be careful what you wish for.”

  6. louis curth says:

    Charlie Stehlin’s reminder “Be careful what you wish for” is especially true when we old geezers wish for those “good old days. Older Adirondackers most likely do miss the quiet, less crowded, simpler ways of days gone by. I know I do.

    Then again, things weren’t always so rosy back then either. People were mostly poor as the post WW 2 prosperity largely passed the Adirondacks by. Rt. 9 was full of frost heaves and pot holes and the Northway wasn’t even a gleam in a highway planner’s eye yet. TV was a couple of snowy channels of shadowy shapes and muffled dialog. In winter we heated with wood and those miserable kerosene space heaters that sooted up just when we needed them the most. We didn’t have much racial diversity so we ginned up our hatred anywhere we could find it. When local schools played each other in basketball, the games might get cut short with brawls among the all white players and fans from neighboring communities ten miles apart.

    On the other hand, outsiders like Dr Jacques. Grunblatt made visits to families all around Johnsburg when they were sick. Anna Smiith, another outsider, gave North Creek good food and a great place for everyone to hang out and gossip . Over in the Pottersville/Schroon Lake area, Scaroon Manor supported the local community for years by purchasing its vehicles from Smith’s Garage, the local auto dealer. Jewish summer camps provided provided many jobs for local young people every summer. And on it goes…

    As for myself, I like the good parts of the past, but I also like that we can be big enough to see that we have an opportunity to fix some things that were wrong, and to treat some people better than we used to. That’s what “community” is all about. I think the kids understand this, but we stubborn old Adirondackers are a bit slower to accept change. Ain’t that right Charlie?

    • Robbi Mecus says:

      As if my respect for you wasn’t big enough Lou, it just grew even bigger. Thank you for those enlightening words. (the writer in you shines through)

    • Charlie Stehlin says:

      Change is good louis, and I’m all for the community spirit thing we need more of it. There is much truism to being “a bit slower to accept change” but there are also very just reasons for being so, which surely you agree with. You have a good mind louis and I respect that. Thank you for sharing!

  7. Charlie Stehlin says:

    I get where you’re at louis, and I appreciate your neutral position & your positivity, but this is a different society than it was back then, which is not to say we have bettered ourselves or become more civilized. Quite the contrary…we have become more complex, we are a hurry-up let’s get there yesterday society. No time to stop and think or listen, to put our minds to work, chill out, vege, whatever you wish to call it. In technologically we have advanced which is fine, but is it? We have put ourselves in a position where we are getting too far ahead of ourselves and at the same time losing our connection to the past, our history, which I truly feel is not in our best interest. Many of us subconsciously feel the same, a deep sense…..those of us with a conscience anyway!

    I took a drive up to Blue Mountain Lake a week ago today (the 23rd), and though there are many reminders of my childhood past still intact in that little hamlet (which is important to me), much of the simple feel still there, etc., there’s this sense that change is coming soon, and what had been sacred to me…all the little, simple things…is going to vanish like it always does once the mass psychology takes root, which it will, even in Blue Mountain Lake, that placid hamlet which has gone generally unchanged since my youth. All good things must come to an end!

    The big buzz has been the new diner. I was of the mind to ‘check it out’ just to see what everyone has been hollering about. I wasn’t expecting myself to get excited like everyone else seems to be doing; I drove by of the mind to go in anyway, to give the place a shot, but the lot was filled-up with cars so I kept driving as crowds induce in me claustrophobia. And besides…everybody yacks, they talk away, even between bites, as if a nervous disorder has got a hold on them. I imagine invisible microbes spit out from their mouths at each verbal gesture, or every hundred words per five seconds when they talk. A phobia of mine I suppose which I’ve had even before the pandemic.

    Sure, people have to make a living and whatever it takes so long as the money rolls…..”bring ’em’ in to purchase my goods.” Just like it is everywhere else. But we lose a lot too because of this dependency which is so general in our culture, we give up what can never be brought back once it is gone as has been proven over and again. When I go to the Adirondacks, to Blue Mountain Lake, Indian Lake, etc., I go to get away to the way it used to be…away from the urban mentality, the crowds, the hurry-up pace, the traffic….. I know, or suspect highly, that there are others who feel the same, who like things just the way they have always been, including many locals. But times are different! The only thing which isn’t different is this nature in us to seek some power outside of ourselves, which at one time we went to ‘the woods’ to seek. Now we find it in devices attached to cords and lit-up screens, or in shopping centers. We cannot help who we are, what we are becoming.

    • louis curth says:

      You offer up a lot of interesting threads among your observations Charlie, but I don’t sense that many Almanack readers are interested in sharing old timey recollections with a couple of aging Adirondack denizens wistful for a world that used to be.

      The future belongs to the young. Yep, those very ones with all their electronic devices and all their rush and hurry urban ways. But they are also a quick study when it comes to accepting the racial and cultural diversity that the census keeps telling us is the future of the Adirondacks and all of America. More of us would do well to listen to the young folks on that score.

      Next time you are in Blue Mt. Lake, maybe you should stop at the museum and see if they are running low on their supply of grumpy old Adirondack geezers to stand around and greet all the younger city folks. You and me could apply. It’d be kinda like Walmart – without all that tiresome smiling.

      • JB says:

        Shame on me, but I couldn’t resist chiming in on this interesting conversation. I’m a Park resident under 40, so I think I might fit the bill of the “future generation” as it pertains here. Maybe I do not fit the stereotype, being a computer programmer who refuses to own a smart phone and instead is a passionate naturalist. I must say that even in my short time, I have seen a remarkable amount of change in the Park, and it does seem to be accelerating. Even since only 2015, I would say that development and traffic in much of the Park has almost doubled. So, at the risk being branded as some kind of intolerant monster, I share some of Charlie’s sentiments. As far as the push to bring diversity to the Park, that is not the problem. But in many cases, it does serve as a convenient guise under which the self-perpetuating bureaucracies of certain local administrations can continue to stay relevant and collect more tax revenue (by bringing in more white people).

  8. Charlie Stehlin says:

    “wistful for a world that used to be.”

    No, it’s more like an acute awareness is all, of change…of every little subtle variation.