Posts Tagged ‘coronavirus’

Monday, August 24, 2020

Adirondack Medical Center pauses inpatient visitation

Following the temporary moratorium on face-to-face visitation at Mercy Living Center last week, Adirondack Medical Center in Saranac Lake has stopped most hospital patient visitation for at least seven days.

Beginning today, visitation is only permitted for maternity care partners and imminent end-of-life situations. There are currently zero COVID-19-positive patients at Adirondack Medical Center. The decision to temporarily restrict visitation was made in view of the continued spread of the virus in neighboring Essex county, as well as the increased number of Franklin and Essex county residents in precautionary quarantine due to potential exposure.

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Saturday, August 22, 2020

Guidance for Managing Recalled Alcohol-Based Hand Sanitizer

In July 2020, the Federal Food and Drug Administration issued a warning about a sharp increase in hand sanitizer products that are labeled to contain ethanol (also known as ethyl alcohol) but that have tested positive for methanol contamination. Methanol, or wood alcohol, is a substance that can be toxic when absorbed through the skin or ingested and can be life-threatening when ingested. The FDA is working with manufacturers to recall products. This guidance addresses actions you can take to dispose of recalled hand sanitizer.
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Saturday, August 22, 2020

COVID Exposure at Golden Beach Campground in Raquette Lake

coronavirusFrom Erica Mahoney, Director of Public Health for Hamilton County:

Two individuals who were staying at Golden Beach Campground in Raquette Lake, NY have tested positive for COVID-19. The couple checked into the campground on Saturday, Aug. 15 and stayed through the morning of Thursday, Aug. 20. These individuals are no longer at the campground, contact tracing is complete and those who were at high risk of exposure have been contacted.

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Thursday, August 20, 2020

The difficult side of sickness

The fresh air cure wasn’t all a bed of roses.

First-hand accounts left behind in letters, photographs, diaries, and memoirs paint a picture of life in Saranac Lake during the TB years. It’s an incomplete record that can lead us to believe curing was an overwhelmingly positive experience.

It takes energy, time, and a degree of mental and physical well being to leave behind a personal record. People who were very ill, illiterate, or struggling with poverty did not have the same opportunity to create, or later preserve, accounts of their experiences.

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Monday, August 17, 2020

Old Forge adapts to a summer without key businesses

When Enchanted Forest Water Safari — one of the longest running attractions in the Adirondacks — announced the park would not open for the 2020 season due to the COVID-19 crisis, Old Forge area residents and businesses feared that the closure would hit the local economy hard. There would be lost summer jobs, lost sales-tax revenue, and lost business income that would ripple through the local economy like wavelets from a vigorously paddled canoe on Old Forge Pond.

The family-owned Water Safari is the largest summer employer in Herkimer County, drawing workers from Herkimer, Lewis, and Oneida counties, as well as J-1 Visa workers from abroad, many of whom spend money that circulates through the local economy. Read how the community of Old Forge, as well as other tourist-dependent towns in the Adirondacks are coping in the wake of closures of key businesses and events in this story from the weekend, in the Adirondack Explorer: https://www.adirondackexplorer.org/stories/closures-hit-some-adirondack-businesses-hard-but-there-are-silver-linings

(Enchanted Forest photo from 1973, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)


Thursday, August 13, 2020

Hub on the Hill Launches Fundraising Campaign for New Vehicles

Public welcome to donate at https://www.caringcrowd.org/provide-meals-food-insecure-families-impacted-covid-19

Resulting from a successful partnership with AdkAction, The Hub on the Hill will deliver approximately 5,500 Emergency Food Packages (EFPs) by October 1, 2020. This project has supplied tens of thousands of meals and put food on the tables of hundreds of families facing increased food insecurity due to COVID-19. 

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Thursday, August 13, 2020

Hyde reopens; offers free admission to essential workers this month

The Hyde Collection is offering free admission to all essential workers and their families throughout the month of August as a thank you for their service during the COVID-19 crisis. After being closed for several months because of the pandemic, The Hyde Collection reopened to visitors on the first of the month.

In accordance with CDC guidelines, The Hyde is open only for visitors who have made appointments on hydecollection.org. When making a reservation online, there is an “Essential Workers and Family” field where first responders, health care workers and all other essential workers can enter the number of family members they will be attending with, and they will not be charged for those tickets.

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Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Fresh Air School: Lessons in outdoor education

As autumn approaches, schools are thinking about ways to keep students safe by maximizing time outdoors. The concept of outside instruction is not new. Leading up to WWII, open air schools were built in the United States and Europe to protect children from tuberculosis. Even in Saranac Lake, where temperatures in the winter tend to stay well below freezing, some children attended unheated, open air classrooms.

In the mid-1920s, the Saranac Lake School District built an open air school at River Street, at a cost of $12,000. All Saranac Lake children were weighed periodically and X-rayed annually. Those found to be underweight attended the Fresh Air School. The building, now used for a nursery school, is located behind the former River Street School. In 1937, the Fresh Air School moved to a new six-room addition built at Petrova School. 

Open air education wasn’t just for preventing illness and improving health. It was also widely used in summer camps as a natural extension of the camping experience. At local camps over generations, children have learned skills outdoors, such as arts, crafts, sports, and music.

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Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Submissions sought for exhibit reflecting on life during pandemic

 The Adirondack Artists Guild, in partnership with the Adirondack Center for Writing, presents Responding II – 2020 as its featured exhibit in September, running from Sept. 4-29.

The title comes from the Gallery’s history – shortly after September 11, 2001, we invited artists, writers, and anyone else who wanted to respond to or share their feelings about that horrific event. We called the show “Responding”, and the gallery was full of deeply moving and expressive creations.

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Sunday, August 9, 2020

Historic Saranac Lake opens to the public with limited hours

Historic Saranac Lake’s Saranac Laboratory museum is re-open, operating under limited hours and strict guidelines in order to keep their patrons and their staff healthy. The museum is the first laboratory in the nation that was built for the study of tuberculosis, showcasing Saranac Lakes history as a community that built a bustling economy around the response to an infectious disease.

Museum staff expects that visitors will find Saranac Lakes history relevant once again in response to COVID-19. The museum is currently open on Thursdays through Saturdays from 10am or 5pm, and visitors are encouraged to check out historicsaranaclake.org for updates.

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Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Paddling and Covid-19

I have such gratitude for the Adirondack woods and waters during this Covid-19 pandemic. Paddling my solo canoe is the best. When I’m with friends, we easily keep our social distance as we float on the open waters and maneuver up a stream bed. 

Keeping six-feet away from the crowds at canoe access sites this summer is another matter. Often it’s difficult finding a parking spot with enough room to keep clear of others walking around their cars while lifting canoes and kayaks. My friends and I wear our masks, but not all do. Families are relieved that their kids can run around, which they do in the parking lots and beaches that serve as canoe and kayak put-in and take-outs. I stick with water access points that are maintained for use by cartop water craft, rather than launching sites appropriate for motor boats.

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Sunday, August 2, 2020

Leading Harvard immunologist discusses COVID-19 vaccine at Trudeau

Professor Barry Bloom delivers annual Steinman lecture, connects TB lessons to work today

A leading global health expert said last week that researchers know they can create a vaccine to protect against COVID-19, but it’s still too soon to predict how effective the first vaccines will be.

Dr. Barry Bloom, a renowned immunologist who has spent his career easing the impact of tuberculosis and leprosy on developing nations, was at the Trudeau Institute on July 27 to deliver the annual Ralph M. Steinman Memorial Lecture. Trudeau named Bloom an honorary trustee at the event. A video of Bloom’s presentation can be found here.

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Thursday, July 30, 2020

Running Together

A winning sports team, like a beautiful ice palace, grows out of a strong community. It’s no surprise that Saranac Lake has a long tradition of athletic achievements. From team sports like bobsledding, baseball, hockey, football, and curling to individual competitions like speed skating and barrel jumping, Saranac Lake history is full of athletic men and women who left their mark.

Today, Covid-19 is disrupting so many traditions, and sporting events are some of the hardest to give up. The cancellation of competitions is heartbreaking for athletes, and it’s hard for the spectators too. In small towns like Saranac Lake, sport brings generations together to enjoy a brief moment when all that matters is the kids on the field or the ice. No matter how fast or slow, each child shines for a moment. Over time, parents come to know each other’s children, and we cheer for their victories too.

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Thursday, July 30, 2020

Backpacking during a pandemic

The COVID-19 outbreak has impacted just about every aspect of life in recent months, including backpacking.

But that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to stay home. Ask writer Betsy Kepes. She spent a few days with a small group this spring on a trip on the Cranberry 50, a hiking route in the northwestern Adirondacks.

Kepes found the trip enjoyable, but it wasn’t without challenges. For instance, what do you do about sharing a lean-to or camping site with others during a pandemic? What happens when you make hot water? Should you share it?

If you’re curious about her experience on her hiking journey, you can read about it on our website. Here is a link to her story: https://www.adirondackexplorer.org/stories/hiking-the-cranberry-50-during-the-covid-19-crisis

Hiking the Cranberry Lake 50 during the Covid-19 pandemic are writer Betsy Kepes (greenish/blue shirt, off-white mask), husband Tom Vandewater (black shirt,off-white mask), and friends Amanda Oldacre (white shirt, black patterned mask) and Jim Burdick (gray/blue shirt black patterned mask). Social distancing and wearing face masks were suggested. Photo by Nancie Battaglia.

Editor’s note: This originally appeared in Mike’s weekly “Backcountry Journal” newsletter. Click here to subscribe.


Saturday, July 25, 2020

In the midst of sickness, patients can create a rich inner life

One of my favorite stories in our local history is about a meteor shower over Mount Baker and a tuberculosis patient named Isabel Smith.

Ms. Smith spent 20 years of her life sick in bed at the Trudeau Sanatorium. She wrote a book about her experience titled Wish I Might. Her book touches upon so many aspects of the cure — the importance of routine, diet, friendships, “cousining,” the natural world, reading, and occupational therapy. So many threads of the story are there.

Most intriguing is Isabel’s description of how she changed as a person during her long illness. She endured disfiguring operations and the removal of ribs to deflate her lung. At times, her case seemed hopeless. As the reality of her sickness settled in, Isabel felt anger, sadness, loneliness, and fear. But one night, on her porch overlooking Mount Baker, she stayed up with her porch mate to watch the Leonid meteor shower. For hours, the young women watched the sky, feeling transported from their sick beds to connect with the vast universe. Suddenly, life was very much worth living.

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