Tuesday, September 15, 2020

ANCA’s annual meeting focuses on racial equity

On its surface, racial equity implies the fair treatment of all people, regardless of race. However, America’s fraught history of race exposes how Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) have been disproportionately denied access to systems, structures and pathways that result in fair opportunities and outcomes for all. By centering racial equity in our communities, we can increase the collective economic and social success for all who live and work in the North Country region. 

These values are at the heart of the Adirondack North Country Association’s 2020 annual meeting, which will take place via Zoom on Friday, September 18 from 1:00 to 3:30 p.m. The virtual event will focus on how racial equity is essential for a stronger, more resilient North Country region, as businesses and communities rebuild from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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Monday, September 14, 2020

Fighting a hemlock invasion

Hemlock woolly adelgidScientists have found a large swath of trees with hemlock woolly adelgid in the Lake George watershed, including a 1.5-mile stretch along the eastern shoreline. This is in addition to some that was found in August on Glen Island.

This is considered especially troubling for the Lake George region because hemlocks are so prevalent there, and they play a key role in the ecosystem, providing habitat for trout and other wildlife.

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Monday, September 14, 2020

Lake George Music Festival: “Drive-in Series”

Lake George Music FestMissing live, classical music?

The Lake George Music Festival presents a “Drive In” series at Charles R. Wood Park- 17 West Brook Road in Lake George, happening at 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 19 and 20.

The musical festival will include accomplished world soloists, and graduates of schools including Juilliard, Curtis, Yale, Rice University, Carnegie Mellon, and members of major orchestras like the Baltimore Symphonic Orchestra, the Malaysian Philharmonic, and the Buffalo Philharmonic. Performances will be enhanced with large screen video, and audiences will have the choice of tuning into an amplified performance, or a high-quality synced audio feed (FM radio) to listen to the concert through their car’s sound system.

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Monday, September 14, 2020

The Show Must Go On

During this quiet summer, one of the things we are missing is the theater. From Broadway in New York City to Pendragon in Saranac Lake, stages have gone dark. Actors are a lively, irrepressible bunch, and so it’s a testament to the seriousness of the situation that theaters are closed.

In interesting contrast, through the 1918 flu pandemic, Broadway did not shut down. A New York Times article this past July titled, “’Gotham Refuses to Get Scared’: In 1918, Theaters Stayed Open” described how, at the height of the flu epidemic, New York’s health commissioner declined to close performance spaces. Instead, he instituted public health measures such as staggering show times, eliminating standing room tickets, and mandating that anyone with a cough or sneeze be removed from theaters immediately.

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Monday, September 14, 2020

More thoughts on permits

Whether the time has come to install a permit system for hiking/backpacking in the High Peaks Wilderness has been in the news lately, and a topic for debate in this recent commentary by Dave Gibson.

Here are a few recent comments that came in via email:

“Sustainable Trail design, rather than our 100+ year old trails.  One way trails on the 2-3 busiest peaks, one trail up a separate trail down.  One half the foot traffic, and, except for the summit, hikers won’t be passing each other all the way up and down, especially since most people hike at roughly the same pace.  Now the real problem is that this will take MONEY.  We need a lot more Rangers as well, so that some of them can go back to their core duties, not just rescues. Gov. Cuomo is good at promoting tourism in the Adirondacks, but woefully lacking in the financial support this extra traffic requires.   This is the People’s park, we all deserve to enjoy it, it soothes the soul. — John Marona

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Sunday, September 13, 2020

Reporter’s notebook: ‘Climate change is water change’

Boreas River headwaters. Photo by Phil Brown 9/5/16.These weekly emails are supposed to come “out of the notebook,” a journalism term for something in my notes that hasn’t made it into a story.

Right now, I’m still working on my next stories and it’s hard to say what in my notebook will or won’t make it. So, let me share a few concepts that are important to our coverage here, particularly mine.

First, since I spend my time writing about water, I think a lot about what climate scientist Brad Udall says: climate change is water change.

 

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Sunday, September 13, 2020

Adirondack Folk School: “Hearts for the Arts” fundraiser

During the several months that the Adirondack Folk School was closed, they lost a third of their year’s usual class revenue and were unable to host their planned 10th anniversary fundraisers — “Hearts for the Arts” and “Christmas in July.”

Their friends and supporters however hung with them through a difficult financial position while they worked hard to gather their resources and continue a sustainable path. Before they closed, many of their vendors, instructors, and compatriots donated several items for that “Hearts for the Arts” Silent Auction.

The first thing they did upon reopening was to contact donors to return the items which they so generously contributed. The donors insisted that the Adirondack Folk School put their donations to good use.

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Sunday, September 13, 2020

Weekly News Roundup

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Saturday, September 12, 2020

Commentary: Attracting young people to the region

By Connor Smith, 2020 ANCA Graduate Fellow
My introduction to the Adirondack Park was made through a summer camp in 2016 when a friend convinced me to work in Saranac Lake. As a resident of the West Coast, I was excited for an opportunity to explore the East as I knew nothing about the area. Somewhere along the way, I must have caught the Adirondack bug, because four years later I am back in the area.

I’ve been working this summer as a Graduate Fellow at ANCA, supporting the work of  the Center for Businesses of Transition. As I ponder what my future will look like upon the completion of my fellowship, moving to the North Country is an option I am considering. I do have reservations about transitioning to full time life inside the Blue Line. Here are some of the questions I ask myself:

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Saturday, September 12, 2020

Prospect Mountain Veterans Memorial Highway summit reopens

Hiking Trail from Village of Lake George to summit opened Sept. 5

Work on improvements to the summit area of Prospect Mountain Veterans Memorial Highway Day Use Area is complete. DEC reopened the summit area and the hiking trail from the village of Lake George to the summit on Saturday, Sept. 5.

The public can park in the large parking lot below the summit and walk to the top via a paved trail. The roadway to the top will remain closed to public motor vehicle use at this time.

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Saturday, September 12, 2020

Compost Awareness Week Poster & Video Contest

International Compost Awareness Week (ICAW) May 2 – 8, 2021 – Save the date!

This upcoming year’s ICAW 2021 theme, Grow, Eat…Compost…Repeat, empowers us to recognize and promote the importance of composting and the use of compost in growing healthier food, supporting healthier soils and, ultimately, creating a more just and sustainable world.

Video Contest Grades 4-8: This international contest runs from September 1, 2020 through November 2, 2020. Submit a short video (less than 30 seconds) highlighting this years theme, Grow, Eat…COMPOST…Repeat. Learn more about the video contest and rules.

Poster Contest Grades 9 -12 and Adults: This international contest runs from September 1, 2020 through November 2, 2020. Submit a poster design highlighting this years theme, Grow, Eat…COMPOST…Repeat. Learn more about the poster contest and rules.


Saturday, September 12, 2020

Bear tales: Readers share their stories

In my weekly “Adk News Briefing” newsletter, I asked readers to share stories of backcountry bear encounters. Here are a few that came in via email (and one was kind enough to share some skat photos too):

A DIFFERENT KIND OF EXPOSURE: My wife Brenda and I have been wilderness camping for forty years in the Daks.  We advanced from backpacking to canoe camping to small boat camping over many years. We finally got a pontoon boat so we could take our two dogs and as many “creature comforts” as we wanted. One of our favorite boat-in camping lakes is Lower Saranac.  In 2018 we received a notice from DEC prior to our departure that there was a bear problem. We were used to bears in our back yard in Pennsylvania so we didn’t give it a second thought. We had an aluminum clad lockable box to store our 50 pounds (two other couples were going to join us later) of food.

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Friday, September 11, 2020

Winged With Hope: Fixing broken monarch wings

Most people have seen the small, flying murals called butterflies.  Nature’s living pieces of art that remain an endless show of life and beauty drawn upon wings of flight.  The carrier of this splendor, a delicate butterfly. 

A butterfly has four wings – two on each side. They are broken into two forewings and two hindwings. The wings are attached to the second and third thoracic segments. When a butterfly is in flight, the wings move up and down in a figure-eight pattern.

Butterfly wings are made up of two chitinous layers. Each wing is covered by thousands of colorful scales and hairs.  These wing scales are tiny overlapping pieces of chitin on a butterfly wing only seen in detail under a microscope. They are attached at the body wall and are modified, plate-like setae or hairs.

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Friday, September 11, 2020

A cure for an ailing planet: 2nd annual Rewilding anthology

In the midst of the worst pandemic in a century, The Rewilding Institute was at work creating its second annual anthology, which showcases the consequences of an “unwinnable war on nature,” including our encroachment on species-rich habitats, and the exploitation and marketing of wild animals for food and aesthetic items.

Produced by The Rewilding Institute and published by Essex Editions, Rewilding Earth has contributions from conservation and restoration leaders and artists who live all over the globe, but several make their home in the Adirondacks and Champlain Valley, including Bill Amadon, Sheri Amsel, David Crews, John Davis, Steven Kellogg, Jon Leibowitz, Rob Leverett, Larry Master, Patty Meriam, Shelby Perry, Kevin Raines, Sophi Veltrop, and Brendan Wiltse.

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Friday, September 11, 2020

Outdoor conditions (9/11): Don’t forget a headlamp

This bulletin provides only the most recent notices. Check the Adirondack Backcountry Information webpages for more detailed information on access, outdoor recreation infrastructure, and conditions.

Emergency Situations: If you get lost or injured; keep calm and stay put. If you have cell service, call 911 or the DEC Forest Ranger Emergency Dispatch, 518-891-0235.

Hike Smart by packing the proper gear. See our recommended packing list and safety tips.

Welcome to the Adirondacks. The Welcome to the Adirondacks webpage is the place to go if you are interested in learning more about the Adirondacks. It provides information about the Forest Preserve, conservation easement lands, outdoor recreation, and Leave No Trace.

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Support the Adirondack Almanack and the Adirondack Explorer all year long with a monthly gift that fits your budget.