Friday, July 27, 2012

Adirondack Museum Dog Days Features ‘Marley and Me’ Author

New York Times Bestselling Author John Grogan will headline the Adirondack Museum’s annual Dog Days of Summer event with a public program called “Marley & Me: What Man’s Best Friend Can Teach Us About Being Human.” The program will begin at 2:30 p.m. on the museum’s center campus. Dogs are welcome. In addition to the public program, there will be a question and answer session, and a book signing. Copies of Grogan’s bestselling books will be available at the Museum Store.

The day will offer additional excitement for dogs and owners. Demonstrations include an introduction to clicker training, paddling with your dog, and water retrieving. Visitors will meet hardworking North Country dogs and learn about their jobs in search and rescue, therapy, and racing. Bill Smith, musician and storyteller, will share humorous stories about people and their dogs. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Historic North Creek Newspapers Go Online

A “Notice!” was placed in the June 22, 1949 issue of the North Creek News by the Water District Superintendent Kenneth Davis and Supervisor Charles Kenwell informing local residence about the drought situation facing them over 60 years ago. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Adirondack Family Activities: Annual Durant Days

Raquette Lake comes together each year to celebrate the founder of the Adirondack Great Camp style, William W. Durant. Durant Days not only celebrates the history of the Adirondack architectural form, but brings people to the area that was the birthplace of the Great Camp design.

Event Organizer Donna Pohl says, “Beverly Bridger of Great Camp Sagamore and I started this event 14 years ago as a way to gain attention for the National Historic Landmarks of Raquette Lake. One of the crowning jewels during Durant Days is the opportunity for a guided tour of Camp Pine Knot.” » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Timbuctoo, Minority Voices in Nature Poetry Programs Set

Some of the nation’s most acclaimed poets from widely diverse backgrounds will read their work as it deals with nature about writing at Paul Smith’s College VIC on August 7th

The natural world is everywhere, and we all react to it differently. How does race influence a poet writing about the natural world?  For example, a tree, for a southern black writer may have sinister qualities due to the history of lynching that a northern white writer would never consider. Acclaimed poets Cornelius Eady, Aracelis Girmay and Chase Twichell will all read their work. Following the reading will be a discussion led by poet Roger Bonair-Agard. This is expected to be a provocative discussion on race, religion, and how these factors affect one’s relationship with the natural world. The program starts at 7 p.m.; the cost is $5. » Continue Reading.


Monday, July 23, 2012

History: Before Water-skiing, There Was Aquaplaning

Water-skiing was invented in Minnesota in 1922, coinciding generally with the surging popularity of motorboats. Since that time, it has been enjoyed by natives and visitors across the Adirondacks. Another water sport, wakeboarding, is cited as originating around 1980. But eight years before the birth of water-skiing, a sport strongly reminiscent of wakeboarding took the nation’s watery playgrounds by storm.

With hundreds of lakes and thousands of summer visitors wealthy enough to own motorboats, the Adirondack region did much to popularize the new sport.

Aquaplaning is sometimes cited as beginning around 1920, but it was a common component of boat shows in the US a decade earlier. In 1909 and 1910, participants attempted to ride a toboggan or an ironing-board-shaped plank, usually about five feet long and two feet wide, towed behind a boat. The boards often resembled the average house door. » Continue Reading.


Saturday, July 21, 2012

Lost Brook Dispatches: Rinkema’s Auger

Before embarking upon our extended July visit to Lost Brook Tract (where we are as you read this) Amy and I made our food list.  Per my recent Dispatch it is quite a list, including a fair number of fresh or perishable items.  At the top of the list is bacon, we have to have bacon.  Now we both love bacon as much as the next person, if not more, but normally we wouldn’t opt for it as it is unwieldy, doesn’t keep well and makes a real mess.

But we need it: not for the bacon itself, but for the bacon grease. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Adirondack Shakespeare Company’s Third Season Underway

The Adirondack Shakespeare Company (ADK Shakes) is back for their third season.  This year’s Summer Festival Season features Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and Hamlet, as well as Tom Stoppard’s comedy Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead and a new ADK Shakes original children’s show.

The Twelve Labors of Hercules, an original play for children, opened on July 11th at the Boathouse Theater in Schroon Lake. Hercules tells the story of Octavius and Agrippa, two young Romans who are magically transported back to Ancient Greece in order to learn an important lesson about friendship. Before they can return home, they must complete the twelve fantastical labors of Hercules. » Continue Reading.


Monday, July 16, 2012

The Adirondacks Go To War: 1861-1865

Adirondacks in the Civil WarOne hundred fifty years ago this country was torn apart by a great civil war. The Adirondack Museum will host a weekend dedicated to remembering the Civil War in the Adirondacks, the men who fought it and their loved ones at home, this Saturday, July 21 and Sunday, July 22.  Visitors will be able to meet the members of the 118th Volunteer Infantry (the “Adirondack” Regiment”) and President Lincoln at a Civil War Encampment and learn the fate of Adirondack Civil War soldiers of the 118th themselves at a specially produced  presentation by author Glenn Pearsall on Saturday (7:00 p.m.) entitled “The Adirondacks Go To War: 1861 – 1865.”

In the Adirondacks many young men, boys really, left their hard scrabble farms and small towns for the first time in their lives to enlist. Learn what their thoughts were as they marched off to war and how they reacted to the horrors of war. Hear what it was like for the wives, children, mothers and father that they left behind, as well as the lasting impact of the war on the small towns in the Adirondacks following the war. » Continue Reading.


Monday, July 16, 2012

Hindenburg: When Dirigibles Roamed North Country Skies

Many famous ships can be linked in one way or another to Plattsburgh on Lake Champlain in northern Clinton County. There was the Philadelphia under Benedict Arnold’s command in the Battle of Valcour, and the Saratoga under Thomas Macdonough, hero of the Battle of Plattsburgh. There were steamers, like the Vermont, the Chateaugay, and the Ticonderoga. And as noted here in the past, Plattsburgh also owns an unusual link to the largest seagoing vessel of its time, the Titanic.

But there is yet another tied not only to Plattsburgh, but to the entire Champlain Valley, and from Whitehall to Albany as well. And like the Titanic, its name became synonymous with disaster. » Continue Reading.


Monday, July 16, 2012

Sandy Hildreth: The Cruel Art of Nature

Great Blue Heron NestI am an artist who, like many others in our world, am inspired by the natural environment around me. In most cases it is the beauty of a place, or the subtle, interesting colors of some rocks, the freeform shape of a brook twisting through a beaver meadow, or sun glistening on a mountain summit. All pretty positive, attractive, peaceful images – the harmony of the natural world.

In a place like the Adirondacks, there are a lot of artists, writers, musicians, and more who gain inspiration from the world around them. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, July 15, 2012

Cabin Life: Of Cats, Mice, and Men

I was watching the sun come up over the Vermont mountains, listening to my dog Pico splash in the lake and really appreciating the bug free morning.  The haziness of the air made for a nice sunrise, all pinks and purples.  Pico loves the water, even though I have to give him a warm-up throw or two of the ball to get him to really swim.  But once he’s in, he loves it.

My cat Ed caught a mouse last night.  At three in the morning.  And he wouldn’t kill it.  He just walked around for half an hour with the poor thing in his mouth.  Every couple of minutes Ed would drop him just to catch him again.  He was growling at Herbie and Pico and me.  Finally I just picked Ed up and carried him outside, where he dropped the mouse and it ran off.  » Continue Reading.


Friday, July 13, 2012

Foxey Brown: Adirondack Outlaw, Hermit and Guide

Join author Charles Yaple at the Adirondack Museum on Monday, July 16 for “Foxey Brown: The Story of An Adirondack Outlaw, Hermit and Guide.”   Yaple will tell the story of railroad worker and college student David Brennan who, convinced he had killed a man in a Boston barroom brawl, fled to the Adirondack Mountain wilderness in 1890. Changing his name to David Brown, he became known as a crafty “Foxey” woodsman and popular guide, until a hunting trip tragedy led to one of the largest manhunts in Adirondack history.

Living through the beginning of the American conservation movement, some tried to cope with increasingly strict State conservation laws and private parks by resorting to thievery, poaching, setting forest fires and even murder. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Adirondack Family Activities:
Shakespeare in the Adirondack Park

Shakespeare in the Adirondack ParkFor the fourth year the Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts  in Blue Mountain Lake is performing Shakespeare the way it was originally intended, according to Marketing Director Anton Briones.

“Shakespeare can be perceived as a high art performance when in reality [the plays] were written for the common masses,” says Briones. “We experimented the first year at the Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts with A Midsummer Night’s Dream and perfected the outdoor, traveling format.”

Part of the Adirondack Lakes Summer Theatre Festival, Shakespeare in the Adirondack Park is free with performances from Piseco to Lake Placid with 14 stops in between.  This year’s production is The Tempest with an Adirondack twist. Though the characters and dialog remain the same, the script is edited to an hour. The unique program is family-friendly with audience members bringing chairs and blankets to enjoy the outdoor ambiance. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Painting The Adks ‘Big’: Tim Fortune and Matt Burnett

Tim Fortune, watercolor paintingArt and nature. The nature of art. Nature effecting art. The Paul Smith’s College VIC, under the direction of canoe guru Brian McDonnell, is doing a pretty good job of tackling these issues. For over a year now Brian has done both the physical work of building and maintaining trails and buildings on the property and he’s also managed to have a full, year round schedule of events, programs, and some fine exhibits of art in the visitors center.

Currently on display are paintings by Saranac Lake artists Tim Fortune and Matt Burnett. Both paint the natural world of the Adirondacks and both paint big. Very accomplished small paintings are on display too, but it’s the large scale images that are truly moving. » Continue Reading.


Monday, July 9, 2012

Charlotte Smith’s War on Bicycling Old Maids

Charlotte Smith of St. Lawrence County was a women’s rights activist with few equals. From the 1870s through the turn of the century, she was among the most famous and visible women in America, battling endlessly for anything and everything that might improve the status of women. No matter what the issue―unemployment, unfair treatment in hiring, deadbeat dads, the plight of single mothers―Charlotte was on the front lines, fearlessly facing down politicians at all levels.

In the 1890s, she also staked out some positions that appeared difficult to defend, but Smith’s single-mindedness gave her the impetus to continue. The bane of women in America held her attention for years, but in modern times, it’s unlikely that any of us would guess its identity based on Charlotte’s description. » Continue Reading.