Almanack Contributor Diane Chase

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.


Friday, December 21, 2018

Long Lake Polar Plunge Benefits North Country First Responders

Throughout the year, we depend on first responders. In our community volunteer firefighters fight to save people, homes, and animals, often risking their own lives. The volunteers in various rescue agencies leave the warmth of their own homes to provide medical assistance to those in need. The list goes on. What happens when the first responder needs help?

In 2016, Dale Barker founded Believe Northern New York, a 501(c)3, as a way for organizations and people to help those people that help all of us. After a local fire department raised over $17,000 for Barker’s own treatment, he saw the need to help other first responders and their families. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, December 13, 2018

Taylor Haskins Kicks Off Westport Winter Music Series

There are many ways to spend the holidays, or those few frantic weeks just before, that truly ring in the year with quaint Adirondack charm, but I look forward to those events that force me to take a step back, relax and stop worrying about a countdown to Christmas.

Award winning trumpeter, composer, and synthesist Taylor Haskins is known for bringing his complex compositions to the Adirondacks as part of the summer Soundwaves concert series. From popular sideman in Grammy-winning jazz big bands to the Green Empire quintet, Haskins keep pushing the boundaries of music. Now an Adirondack resident, Haskins will be sharing his special sounds at the Westport Heritage House on December 21 from 5:23 to 6:23 pm. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, December 6, 2018

Out of the Closet: Adirondack Ugly Sweater Events

Even thoughtful gifts don’t always exactly fit your taste. Give that ugly sweater a chance to redeem itself (and the sweater giver) by wearing it an Adirondack ugly sweater events. Just like that bridesmaid dress we are always told can be repurposed, that festive holiday sweater can now raise funds for children’s art classes, food pantries, or even a pint of beer. Good luck.

On December 8, BluSeed Studios will host an Ugly Sweater 5K Run/Walk to help fund their annual free spring break and after school art classes for area children. Each participant will receive a raffle ticket for artisan items. Registration and the race begins at their Cedar Street location in Saranac Lake, and continues around Moody Pond to end back at BluSeed Studio for hot beverages and muffins. Admission is $20 for adults (which includes a commemorative artisan tile/trivet), $5 for students and leashed dogs, while children in strollers are free. You can register the morning of the event beginning at 8:30 am for a 9 am start. Prizes are awarded for top three male and female as well as the ugliest sweater. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, November 29, 2018

30 Years of ‘Christmas in Warrensburgh’ Events

It’s a quick transition between Thanksgiving and Christmas. I haven’t even finished the turkey-day leftovers while my neighbors already have their halls decked with holly.

I need to be eased into the holiday spirit and luckily festivals around the Adirondacks each week help me to do just that.

Each Adirondack town has opportunities to shop local and bring home some holiday cheer. For 30 years, Warrensburg has been bringing an old-fashioned Christmas experience that pulls at the heart strings with caroling, a living nativity scene, horse drawn carriage rides, and more. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, November 22, 2018

Central Adirondacks Celebrate The Holidays This Weekend

Thursday may be Thanksgiving, but from Speculator to Indian Lake, Christmas bells will be ringing a bit early and providing activities and family fun that is uniquely Adirondack.

With Reindeer Runs and Victorian carolers, as well as local artisans and delicious food, the towns of Speculator, Indian Lake, Inlet, and Old Forge are making sure everyone can celebrate the season in style. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, November 18, 2018

Regional Ballet Companies Bring The Nutcracker to the Adirondacks

After you’ve turkey-trotted your way into eating that second plate of leftovers and made sure no local stores remain “in the red,” it’s time to embrace the arts with a holiday tradition, The Nutcracker.

Tchaikovsky’s ballet,  The Nutcracker, is the perfect blending of gorgeous costumes and magical sets with a timeless story and score.  This family-friendly ballet is just as much a holiday tradition as Black Friday and Small Business Saturday. After an exhausting shopping excursion, it’s time to become part of Claire’s adventure as her toy Nutcracker comes to life to defeat the evil Mouse King. » Continue Reading.


Friday, November 9, 2018

Last Free Fishing Day of 2018 On Sunday

Each year the New York State (NYS) Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) offers four opportunities to test New York’s fishing waters for free. No fishing license is required and it’s a wonderful opportunity to give the sport of fishing a chance.

Fishing is a spiritual journey for some and an obsession for others. My husband grew up fishing and shares that love with both our children. My son likes the competition while my daughter likes any opportunity to best her brother. Keep in mind that children always fish for free in New York State until fifteen years of age. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, November 1, 2018

Three Adirondack Veterans Day Events

It’s really okay that Veterans Day doesn’t get its own kitschy candy, slogan, or costume. Veterans Day highlights medals, honor, and sacrifice. It doesn’t come dressed up like a princess and it doesn’t slide down your chimney to fill your stockings. It comes each November 11, a holiday dedicated to American veterans of all wars.

Veterans Day was first celebrated as Armistice Day to commemorate the November 11, 1918 temporary truce, hence the term armistice, between the Allied Nations and Germany during the first World War. The name was changed in 1954, after the second World War and the Korean War, to honor all American war veterans.

» Continue Reading.


Thursday, October 25, 2018

Celebrating Halloween In Ticonderoga Oct 26-31

Ticonderoga is rattling the cupboards in hopes of conjuring up all the ghosts with its annual Halloween Festival and Fort Ticonderoga’s Maze by Moonlight.

Before or after getting lost in the Heroic Corn Maze, stop by the town of Ticonderoga for a five-day festival of fun, October 26-31. Each day a range of activities are planned that are suitable for the very young to those wanting the traditional scare.

Pumpkin carving, a variety show and pumpkin walk are just a few of the listed activities. Other fun ways to celebrate Halloween include the costumed competition of Glow Bowling or treat n’ treating through a round of Monster Mini Golf. Enjoy a Halloween photo shoot and even a costumed parade for pets.  North Country Community College is offering a scary movie or a chance to meet The Great Pumpkin so people of all ages can choose their own level of fright. » Continue Reading.


Friday, October 19, 2018

Drinking Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

The owners of Adirondack Winery are making sure that everyone has an opportunity to Drink Pink for the remainder of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. For the sixth year, Adirondack Winery donates a certain amount from each specially marked bottle of their Drink Pink Berry Breeze blush wine for the American Cancer Society’s Marking Strides Breast Cancer Adirondack Chapter. » Continue Reading.


Friday, October 12, 2018

Adirondack Experience Readies for Change of Season

The season is coming to a close for the Adirondack Experience, the museum on Blue Mountain Lake, but isn’t not the end of the activities. Each fall the museum gets ready for winter and provides opportunities for people to bring home a special Adirondack gift from their unique shop.

According to ADKX Director of Marketing Ausra Angermann, the museum has two planned weekends set for people to do their holiday shopping and visit beautiful Blue Mountain Lake. On November 23-24 and December 14-16 from 10 am to 4 pm, the museum provides a special shopping experience to all visitors. » Continue Reading.


Friday, October 5, 2018

Adirondack Loon Celebration, Art Show At Paul Smith’s VIC

The loon is such an iconic symbol of wilderness with its haunting call, red eyes, and distinctive markings. With all wildlife, we need to understand how to respect its boundaries while admiring it in its natural habitat. Thanks to the Adirondack Loon Center for Loon Conservation, there is a place to learn more about this aquatic bird.

The annual Adirondack Loon Celebration takes place at the Paul Smith’s VIC, October 7 from 1 to 5 pm, with a schedule of activities emphasizing the importance of loons to the Adirondack ecosystem. Live music with Celia Evans, Green Goddess food, silent auction, children’s activities, and other loon related activities are just part of the fun-filled day. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, September 27, 2018

Annual Cheese Tour Highlights Three Adirondack Farms

The leaves are just starting to change colors, which always gets my family thinking about autumn activities and ways to share the Adirondacks with visitors, family, and friends. One of our favorite things about those cool nights and crisp days is making comfort food, which usually means cheese.

For the fifth year, three local cheese farms are welcoming cheese lovers, cheese likers, or even those (gasp) who have never tried cheese, for a self-guided local tour of the farmstead operations into the daily cheese.

» Continue Reading.


Thursday, September 20, 2018

Indian Lake’s Moose Festival Is This Weekend

According to the Great Adirondack Moose Festival Chairperson Brenda Valentine, it’s difficult for her to believe that it has been nine years since this celebration of everything moose took over the streets of Indian Lake.

The festival celebrating New York State’s largest land mammal is back this weekend (Sept. 22-23) with more hikes, vendors, and information regarding the return on the Adirondack moose. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, September 13, 2018

It’s Town of Johnsburg History Weekend

The Town of Johnsburg is connecting its history through storytelling and activities for the third year. The annual Johnsburg History Weekend blends together a grave yard tour, live music, lectures, and children’s activities to make history come alive.

“There is so much history in the North Creek area,” says North Creek Railway Preservation Society President Ellen Schaeffer. ”We approached the town three years ago to make the third weekend in September be The Town of Johnsburg History weekend. So much of our history was being forgotten.”

Schaeffer explains how 25 years ago a group of concerned citizens saw the deterioration of the North Creek train depot. The platform and depot where Teddy Roosevelt learned about President McKinley’s death and his own presidential succession on September 14, 1901 was becoming just another forgotten piece of history. » Continue Reading.