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.


Thursday, June 1, 2017

Great Adirondack Birding Celebration Opens at Paul Smith’s VIC

Bird watching along with National Trails Day is a perfect combination and the Paul Smith’s VIC Great Adirondack Birding Celebration (GABC) has a schedule to please everyone from the most passionate to the novice birder.

The 3-day festival of birds for bird watchers offers full day workshops from as far afield as Champlain Valley to the St. Lawrence Valley. Other events and activities are organized closer to the base camp at Paul Smith’s VIC. » Continue Reading.


Friday, May 26, 2017

Memorial Day ‘Carry the Load’ Project

The importance of Memorial Day can be lost in the shuffle of a long holiday weekend, traffic jams, and parades. Though we may all don our red crepe poppy to honor family and veterans lost in service to our country, a Texas-based organization realized that all our nation’s heroes needed to be honored and one way to help was to Carry The Load.

Carry the Load co-founders Clint Bruce and Stephen Holley war veterans, came home feeling that their friends who had fallen in the line of duty had been forgotten amidst the fireworks and BBQs. To honor those friends and many others that had fallen, Bruce loaded one pound of weight in a backpack to symbolize each friend that he had lost and he conducted a standard military march. The mission spread and now a coast-to-coast relay, marches, and rallies take place across the United States. » Continue Reading.


Friday, May 19, 2017

Citizen Science: Project BudBurst

Participating in various Citizen Science projects allows my family to learn about our local landscape while contributing data to long-term science research. We’ve helped with FrogWatch USA, part of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, to help familiarize us with our local wetlands through the identification of frog and toad calls. We contribute to Monarch Watch, which is currently focusing on the Spring First-of-Year Sightings. This year we started tracking various plants around our area.

Started in 2007, Project BudBurst is a Citizen Science project relying on volunteers across the United States to monitor native plants at various times throughout the seasons. Participants observe and record data based on leafing, flowering, and fruiting of various plants. Those stages are called the plant phenophases, the observable stages in the plant’s annual life cycle. » Continue Reading.


Friday, May 12, 2017

Adirondack Winery Tastings For Mother’s Day

I’ve been giving Mother’s Day a lot of thought. It’s taken me years to finally treat “the day” a bit like Christmas, though I’m not sure my family has taken any of my hints. I dog-ear catalogs, make lists, and toss around hints. One activity I’ve always wanted to revisit is an Adirondack wine tasting.

Since my children aren’t old enough to join me and my mother doesn’t drink, my husband is just going to have to take one for the team. » Continue Reading.


Friday, May 5, 2017

Rulf’s Orchard 65th Anniversary Celebration

What started as a small dairy farm in 1952 with 12-acres of apple trees has now grown to be an farmstand destination in Peru, NY. Over the past 65 years, Rulf’s Orchard has expanded from its modest roots to include seasonal vegetables, Pick-U-Own Blueberries and Strawberries, a corn maze, year-round bakery, and a pumpkin patch. It’s the fresh apples and cider that always have my family coming back. This Saturday, the staff and owners of Rulf’s are throwing their own anniversary party to commemorate their 65th anniversary.

According to Rulf’s Office Manager Amanda Whisher, they are finally able to show off their new building and showcase the greenhouses. Though the new addition was completed in September, the staff at Rulf’s wanted to wait until spring to celebrate their latest transition. » Continue Reading.


Friday, April 28, 2017

Saranac Lake’s Daffest Welcomes Spring

Spring is in the air and that means Saranac Lake’s Daffest. With daffodils peeking out from individual yards and local parks, the April 27-30 festival is here to shake off the last of that winter melt and celebrate the hardy flower. Saranac Lake is flush with the bright yellow blossoms.

There are many events on the Daffest schedule including a Pub Crawl, Historic Walk and a 5K Fun Run. By far the largest draw is the annual soapbox derby. My children and friends have been a part of Saturday’s Daffest Derby for years. Though neither were ever in the fastest derby car, the process has always fun. Don’t worry. You don’t have to squeeze yourself into a tiny wooden car and careen down George LaPan Memorial Highway’s hill, to enjoy the soapbox derby. It’s just as fun to be a spectator and check out all the creative cars. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Adirondack Museum Changes Name To ‘The Adirondack Experience’

The Adirondack Museum has changed its name to The Adirondack Experience, The Museum on Blue Mountain Lake (ADKX).

Director of Marketing Ausra Angermann, who came on board in February and has helped implement the name change, said  “Changing a name and identity is not a decision that is taken lightly. The name change was under way before I came on board. Research was conducted and a marketing team put in place as well as an agency to help with the transition.” » Continue Reading.


Friday, April 14, 2017

Adirondack Easter Services on Gore and Whiteface

This Easter, my family is choosing to leave the traditional religious service behind and mark the day on the top of Little Whiteface. Though not everyone commemorates Easter, we hope a sunrise service will be a tradition my child embraces – as well as on that briefly takes her focus off candy hunts.

Every year Gore and Whiteface Ski Resorts offer a nondenominational service that brings everyone closer to nature. Each Easter the two Adirondack ski resorts offer free gondola rides so that everyone can be part of this unique experience. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, April 6, 2017

Inlet Egg Hunts Foster Community Spirit

Easter is right around the corner and egg scrambles and scavenger hunts are scattered around the Adirondack Park. Though Inlet is known for its creative events (think July 4th Ping-Pong Ball Drop), they want to celebrate the adults in their community with an “adult only” egg hunt.

According to Inlet Information Office’s Department Head Mitch Lee, their organization is always hatching all sorts of events for visitors and residents of the Inlet community. Their small community has always relied on eco-tourism and has a full schedule of events that have stood the test of time. » Continue Reading.


Friday, March 31, 2017

Owl Prowl at Lake George on Saturday

Our family always enjoys the opportunity for a night hike, snowshoe or ski. Being able to unwind at the end of the day helps us focus on our other senses, to listen to nature, and reconnect. One favorite way to unwind is calling in the owls. That activity wasn’t something that just showed up on our radar. It began with a local Owl Prowl and it has become part of an evening routine.

According to Lake George Land Conservancy (LGLC) Land Stewart Alex Novack, the LGLC’s April 1st Owl Prowl is a perfect opportunity to learn more about these nocturnal animals. The location for the free night-time hike was chosen because of the potential for interactions with owls. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 23, 2017

Last ‘Official’ Maple Weekend in the Adirondacks

Pancake breakfasts, wooded walks and maple tastings are all on the menu of the the last official New York State Maple Producers Association’s Maple Weekend. Maple producers have been making syrup since mid-February, and it’s shaping-up to be a banner year.

Since the mid-1990s, a one-day open house has grown across New York State into two full Maple Weekends. This weekend (March 25-26) is a great opportunity to learn more about our region’s favorite sugary treat. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 16, 2017

Irish Road Bowling At Indian Lake Saturday

Indian Lake won’t let a little snow emergency stop them from enjoying another year of Irish Road Bowling. Since 2006, Indian Lake has been the only consistent Adirondack town to offer a traditional road bowling competition.

According to Indian Lake’s Events and Activities Coordinator Patricia Mahoney, this St. Patrick’s Day tradition is just one stop in a weekend of Adirondack fun that includes events such as a traditional parade, Mutt Strut, and a volleyball tournament . » Continue Reading.


Friday, March 10, 2017

Old Forge Snofest: First Tour Stop for 2018 Sled Models

The snowmobile season has largely ended around the Adirondacks, but that’s not stopping Old Forge from focusing on snowmobile trails and new sleds. With major snowmobile dealers once again making Old Forge the first stop on the Sneak Peek Tour, snowmobile enthusiasts are getting the most out of the short season.

According to Mike Farmer, Tourism Director for the Town of Webb, the major snowmobile dealers pack up from the Las Vegas Manufacturer Show with transport trucks full of the latest models, demos and cut-away machines. » Continue Reading.


Friday, March 3, 2017

Wooden Ski Rendezvous, Farm Dinner at Cascade Ski Center

Cascade X-C Ski CenterThe last scheduled Farm Dinner of the season will be held this Friday, March 3, at Cascade Cross Country Ski Center outside of Lake Placid. The local farm to table feast is in its third year highlighting local food, music, and a night ski. On Sunday, a Wooden Ski Rendezvous will be held to benefit Barkeater Trails Alliance (BETA)

According to Cascade XC Ski Center Manager Jen Jubin, the Friday Night Farm Dinners are a wonderful family-friendly option. The farm dinner focuses on local farmers and the event provides a welcoming atmosphere for all ages. The theme for the March 3rd event is German fare featuring Mace Chasm pork schnitzel and Fledgling Crow’s fingerling potatoes and spring greens. Ausable Brewing Company will take over the taps at the bar and introduce three new German-style lagers. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, February 23, 2017

Art in the Public Eye 24-Hour Play Fest

This weekend Art in the Public Eye (APE) of Glens Falls is holding its 24-Hour Play Fest. Writers, directors and actors randomly form teams to produce a 10-minute play. This Saturday, February 25 at 8 pm, 10 teams will descend on the Wood Theatre where audience members will vote for a winning play, director, and actors.

According to APE Play Fest Chairperson Erin Coon the event was modeled after a similar event held while she attended Indiana University. On returning home Coon to the Lake George area, Coon helped link the local effort with national 24-Hour Play producers. » Continue Reading.


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