Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Tupper Lake Assisting Businesses With Digital Curb Appeal

Tupper Lake Branding LogoThe town of Tupper Lake has announced that it will be assisting businesses in improving their “digital curb appeal” through website upgrades and digital marketing training.

The digital marketing training will come in the form of a free two-part digital marketing workshop presented by AdWorkshop and the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism (ROOST). » Continue Reading.


Sunday, January 29, 2017

Words Of Wisdom From “Old Mountain” Phelps

Plenty of entertaining statements are attributed to Orsen “Old Mountain” Phelps, the over-commercialized Betty Crocker of Adirondack Mountain guides.

I don’t know exactly who Phelps was, but after 30-plus years in the journalism business, I recognize the type: He wanted to be a lot of things, and was pretty good at it, but lost something of his identity in the process. His Swiss Army Knife approach to life led him down paths not just as a guide, but as a writer, scientist, geographer and philosopher-at-large.

The one thing he seemed pretty clear on, and I can relate, is that he did not want to go through life as a manual laborer. He cut trails, sure, but in Phelps’ world this was no more work than writing is to me.

Phelps was no intellect, but neither was he the semi-literate hayseed he passed himself of as when trying to land a guiding gig. I always fantasize that Phelps talked like Sir Kenneth Clarke when he was at home, but broke into a full hillbilly rag on the job, ladling in heaping helpings of dagnabbits and conswarnits to impress the clientele. » Continue Reading.


Friday, January 27, 2017

Saranac Lake Ice Palace Construction Has Begun

Volunteers Building the 2016 Ice PalaceConstruction of the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival Ice Palace began Friday, January 27th. Construction involves harvesting ice from Lake Flower, transporting it to the shore and assembling it according to a blueprint. Construction on the palace will continue until the start of the carnival on February 3. The 2017 Winter Carnival will take place February 3rd to the 12th.

The Ice Palace is built by volunteers, organized by a group informally known as the Ice Palace Workers 101 (IPW 101). The public is welcome to volunteer and roles are assigned based on comfort level, skill and ability. » Continue Reading.


Friday, January 27, 2017

Artists Making Animal Masks For Winter Carnival

Saranac Lake is getting ready for its 120th Winter Carnival this February 3rd to 12th with an appropriate carnival theme: Adirondack Animals. To help get everyone in the mood, BluSeed Studios is conducting a mask decorating contest with the proceeds benefiting a new public art installation. This weekend is the final chance to be involved.

According to Organizer Edward DeLeon Saranac Lake ArtWorks and BluSeed Studios has formed a partnership and the mask making contest and exhibit is one of the first collaborations for the two art establishments. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, January 26, 2017

Lake Flower Landing’s Bakery Concert Series Begins Sunday

The Lake Flower Bakery Concert Series will be held on the last Sunday of the month, January through June at Lake Flower Landing in Saranac Lake, with the first concert this Sunday, January 29th, at 4 pm with special guest Brian Donat.

The Bakery Concert Series, hosted by cellist Esther Rogers Baker, and multi-instrumentalist/composer Gene Baker, will focus primarily on music composed within the last century.

Each month will feature Gene and Esther plus guests including Adirondack cellist Brian Donat, Crane professor of electronic music Jerrod Sommerfeldt, Saranac Lake violinist Elaine Dewar, Lake Placid pianist Joey Izzo, Connecticut violinist Annie Trepanier, and guest composer Hillary Tann, among others. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Hockeyfest, Snow Sculpting Championship Getting Underway

Can Am Adult Pond HockeyHelicopter rides, ice bowling, snow sculpting and pond hockey will highlight the first Hockeyfest Weekend from January 26 to 29 in Lake Placid, coinciding with the New York State 2017 Snow Sculpting Championship, which began Tuesday.

Hockeyfest has been introduced as a way to enhance the annual CAN/AM Adult Pond Hockey tournament that occurs on a series of groomed rinks lined up on Mirror Lake in Lake Placid each year.

The action on Mirror Lake will include helicopter rides on Friday and Saturday, and family-friendly pickup games of broomball, ice bowling, Shinny and public skating on the lake loop ice track, along with public skating at the speed skating oval throughout the weekend. » Continue Reading.


Monday, January 23, 2017

ROOST Announces 2017 Board of Directors

roost annual meeting`The Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism (ROOST) has announced its 2017 Board of Directors. ROOST elected three new, reelected five current board members, and elected officers.

The new slate was announced at ROOST’s Winter Social at Big Slide Brewery and Public House in Lake Placid, which was attended by ROOST staff, board members, businesspeople, and elected officials from throughout ROOST’s eight Adirondack regions. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Hal Smith, Alias Otis Campbell, Massena’s Shining Star (conclusion)

In 1964, plans were made to celebrate the success of Massena’s nationally famous friend with a special event: Hal Smith Day. Virtually every business and every family in town became involved in the planning, with such crowds expected that tickets and reservations for many events were in hot demand.

Included in the festivities were a group breakfast, lunch, and dinner; a royal welcome that featured a crown made of (what else?) aluminum from the local plant; a visit to the hospital, where he entertained patients; an autograph session at a vacant store transformed by area merchants into a replica of the Mayberry jail; all-day limousine service; band music at several venues; the theater playing movies that Hal appeared in, and autographs for each attendee; a reunion with old schoolmates; induction as a member of the St. Regis Indians; and at the Highland Hotel that night, Hal appeared in the floor show. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, January 22, 2017

Adirondack Foundation Hires Birth to Three Alliance Director

Megan MurphyMegan Murphy has been appointed as the director of the Adirondack Birth to Three Alliance (BT3), a project of Adirondack Foundation.

BT3’s mission is to support and help expand early childhood services in the North Country region of Clinton, Essex, and Franklin counties, as well as the St. Regis Mohawk Reservation.

Murphy has a background in program development and delivery, building regional collaboratives, community assessment, and strategic planning. She comes to Adirondack Foundation from Adirondack Health Institute (AHI), where she oversaw programs to improve health and quality of life in our communities. » Continue Reading.


Monday, January 16, 2017

Hal Smith, Massena’s Shining Star (Part 4)

Hal Smith‘s heavy workload was more than paying the bills, and in 1952 he began building a home in the San Fernando Valley. Bit parts in so many TV shows led to appearances in multiple episodes of popular programs like Broken Arrow and Have Gun, Will Travel, and countless opportunities in the world of commercial advertising. For several years he was too busy to get away often, so in late 1959, instead of visiting his parents in Old Forge, he flew to Detroit to buy a new Dodge, drove to the Adirondacks, and brought them back to California for a six-month stay. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Peggy O’Shea Appointed Interim Executive Director at View

Fritz Messere, president of the board of directors of View arts and community center in Old Forge announced the appointment of Peggy O’Shea, former president & CEO of The Community Foundation of Herkimer and Oneida Counties, as View’s interim executive director as of December 31, 2016. O’Shea succeeds Jennifer Potter-Hayes, who retired in December after leading View for six years.

View, founded in 1951, has evolved into an art and community center, housed in a green-certified 28,000 square foot gallery, theater, workshop and studio facility on Route 28. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Hal Smith, Alias Otis Campbell, Massena’s Shining Star (Part 3)

In early January 1938, Hal Smith, described as an “impersonator, vocalist, and musician,” left WIBX in Utica to sing, do impersonations, and perform production work for stations WGR, WKBW, and WEBR in Buffalo. Without missing a beat, he was soon serving as master of ceremonies at high-profile events, and leading a band known as Pop Martin and His Boys while hosting a radio show by the same name. He was also regularly featured on WEBR with well-known Buffalo singer Joan Hutton, on a pair of shows titled “Music is My Hobby” and “Linger Awhile.”

Despite doing well in Buffalo, Hal returned by mid-year to WIBX in Utica. One reason for the move may have been his relationship with the station secretary there, Vivian Angstadt. In early August 1938 they applied for a marriage license, and were wed in Utica on the thirteenth. After a stay at Lake Placid while touring the Adirondacks, they returned to work at WIBX. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Duck Decoy Collection Being Showcased At TAUNY

jerry lincoln and swan decoysTraditional Arts in Upstate New York (TAUNY) will hold an opening reception on Saturday, January 14 from 10 am to 12 pm for an exhibition of selected decoys from the collection of Jerry Lincoln of Ogdensburg. Lincoln will be in the gallery to answer questions about his collection, and to share stories about his duck hunting experiences over many years. The decoys will remain on display at the TAUNY Center through the end of February.

The exhibit of Jerry Lincoln’s decoys is the first installment of TAUNY’s 2017 Personal Collection Series. This year, TAUNY will showcase personal collections from individuals around the region. Each collection has a special connection to the North Country; most of the items were originally produced or utilized here. These collections represent a diversity of interests related to the folk life and ongoing traditions of the region. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Baskets and Birdhouses Exhibit at the Old Forge Library

“Baskets and Birdhouses,” an art exhibit by mother and daughter artisans Barbara and Bernie Green is currently on display at the Old Forge Library through February 18th.

There will be an opening reception on Friday, January 13, from 5 to 7 pm to provide an opportunity to meet and talk with the artists and view their work. Light refreshments will be served and acoustic music will be provided by guitarist Dan Vellone. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Hal Smith, Alias Otis Campbell, Massena’s Shining Star (Part 2)

For Hal Smith and his siblings, there always seemed to be a new act in the works. When she was 18, Hal’s sister Bernadeen presented the Follies of 1932 in the local opera house in January, a show that included the Smith children singing and dancing. In April of the same year, the PTA sponsored a circus act as a stage production, with dozens of cast members led by Hal Smith as ringmaster. In two different shows presented in June, including a band concert, he sang solos.

In September, at the beginning of the next school year, Bernadeen and Kathleen directed, acted, and danced in a four-act play. Just three weeks past his 16th birthday, Hal sang a solo in scene two, and between acts he sang with Joe Calipari and his orchestra.

While still directing plays and shows, the Smith sisters enrolled in Potsdam Normal School in the fall of 1932. Hal continued taking acting roles, but more and more was performing as a singer. He joined the newly formed Massena High School choir, and in November, when the school band played on radio station CFLC (in Prescott, Ontario, opposite Ogdensburg on the St. Lawrence River), Hal was the solo vocalist. » Continue Reading.


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