A lot of festivals happen around the Adirondacks. What sets the North County Life Flight Pumpkinfest apart is that this fundraiser benefits an organization that we all want to have available to us though we hope we will never have to use.
This festival is a pay-as-you-play type of event with plenty of activities for your money. There are easy games of chance, pumpkin decorating, a hayride, touch-a-truck, and face painting. My favorite event is always the cakewalk because it’s truly a walk to win a cake. » Continue Reading.
Hoel, Turtle, Slang, and Long Pond are part of a route known as the Nine Carries located in the St. Regis Canoe Area.
Beginning at the parking area for Hoel Pond, paddle approximately one mile across the pond until you reach the train crossing. A culvert passes under the tracks into Turtle Pond. Carry over the tracks or pass through the culvert if there is enough water flowing through. Turtle pond is a much smaller narrower body of water. At about eight tenths of a mile long, paddling this pond can be much less demanding. There is no carry between Turtle and Slang Ponds. The two are connected by a winding narrow waterway. Paddlers should be cautious of downed branches, beaver dams, and low water through this passageway. » Continue Reading.
Men have dominated the craft of building guideboats ever since the middle of the nineteenth century, when the first guideboats were made. The only known female builder is Allison Warner from Lake Clear.
Warner’s interest in wooden boats dates back to when she paddled wooden canoes while growing up in southern Texas. As a young adult, she moved to the Adirondacks and began working with AmeriCorps as a carpenter’s helper at Great Camp Santanoni under Tupper Lake carpenter Michael Frenette, who introduced her to boat restoration and guideboats in 1999. » Continue Reading.
A one day summit planned for Thursday hopes to give local organizations a leg-up in the growing “wellness economy”. Organizers say that those involved in outdoor recreation, tourism, health, arts and culture, wellness or local foods are poised to take advantage of a trillion-dollar and growing wellness travel industry focused on nature, outdoor recreation, heritage, arts, culture, local foods and tourism.
“Grow Your Business in the Exploding Wellness Economy” will be held on November 13th, from 10 am to 3 pm at the Lake Clear Lodge & Retreat. Karin Rozell, founder of WellPronet.com, and author of Rock Stars of Wellness will headline the event as both keynote speaker and leader of the afternoon marketing workshop. » Continue Reading.
St. Regis Canoe Outfitters has published two new waterproof maps for paddlers, one covering the three Saranac Lakes, the other covering the St. Regis Canoe Area.
The color maps cover some of the same territory as the Adirondack Paddler’s Map, also published by St. Regis Canoe Outfitters, but the new maps are more detailed and, being smaller, easier to handle.
They’re also less expensive: $9.95 versus $19.95 for the Adirondack Paddler’s Map (which is four times as large).
“Many first-time visitors are going to grab a $10 map before they grab a $20 map,” said Dave Cilley, owner of St. Regis Canoe Outfitters, which has stores in Saranac Lake and Floodwood. » Continue Reading.
Escape the great camp style so overdone in the Adirondack Park and step into a true Adirondack bar at Charlie’s Inn and Restaurant on Junction Road in Lake Clear. Dating back to 1891 when the Lake Clear Junction station was built, history of the common traveler permeates the pub. Walls cluttered with memorabilia from every decade of its existence represent those who have come before. Look past the lottery and snack vending machines and feel the echoes from the train station across the road. Imagine the rum runners making their way to and from Canada, stopping in to share stories, to eat, to rest, to engage in their commerce. » Continue Reading.
After moving to Saratoga Springs thirty-five years ago, Anne Diggory started looking for scenic landscapes to paint and soon gravitated to the Adirondacks. She’s been painting them ever since.
Over the years, Diggory has created several hundred paintings of mountains, lakes, and streams in the Adirondack Park. Starting this week, fifteen of them went on display at the Blue Mountain Gallery in New York City. The exhibit, titled “Turbulence,” will run through January 28. Why “Turbulence”? Diggory, who majored in art at Yale, explained that she tried in these works to capture the energy of the natural world—whether a stormy sky, a frothy stream, or a wind-whipped lake. “I have a real interest in things that are moving or changing,” she said.
Depending on circumstances, she will paint on the spot or work from her sketches or photos. For Ripple Effect II, the painting of Rogers Rock shown above, she shot video from her Hornbeck canoe on Lake George. Later, she watched the video at home and created a seventy-inch-wide painting. (For a portrait of the artist at work,check out this New York Times story.)
Other Adirondack places depicted in “Turbulence” include Lake Clear, Lake Durant, and the Saranac River. The exhibit also includes paintings from beaches on Long Island and in South Carolina.
She made several of the paintings last summer while working as an artist-in-residence at the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake. (The name of the gallery is just a coincidence.)
Fortunately, you don’t have to travel to New York City to see the paintings in “Turbulence.” Most of them can be viewed on Diggory’s website. Just click here.
Not surprisingly, Diggory is an enthusiastic hiker and paddler. She and her husband used to take their daughters, Ariel and Parker, on camping trips when the girls were young. Ariel went on to earn a master’s degree in conservation biology from the State College of Environmental Science and Forestry and now works at the Adirondack Park Agency.
One of Diggory’s favorite Adirondack paintings depicts the view of Panther Gorge from Mount Marcy, the state’s highest summit. So far, she has climbed seven or eight of the forty-six High Peaks.
“I’m not going to climb all of them, but I’ll paint them all,” she remarked.
The Blue Mountain Gallery will host an opening reception 6-8 p.m. Thursday (January 5) and a closing reception 4-6 p.m. Saturday, January 28. The gallery is located at 530 West 25 Street in Manhattan.
A choice is something we (as Americans) are used to getting but with Donnelly’s Ice Cream the one thing you don’t get to decide is the flavor of the day. As the Donnelly’s motto attests, “Please pick a size, the flavor has already been decided.”
Over the years that we’ve lived in the Adirondack Park, Donnelly’s Homemade Ice Cream has been the only reason some groups we’ve led hiking in the High Peaks have made it down the mountain. A beacon to many a hiker, Donnelly’s Homemade Ice Cream is a social place as well as ice cream pit-stop at the four corners of Route 86 and 186, commonly known as Donnelly’s Corners, just minutes from Saranac Lake. It doesn’t seem to matter how weary we are on a hike off the mountain we can always manage to muster the energy for a cone of the flavor of the day. » Continue Reading.
After being closed for the coldest months, the Adirondack Fish Hatchery is once again open for tours. Though fishing with children is a wonderful activity, having the ability to see the rearing of landlocked Atlantic salmon is well worth the trip. Most children, and adults, don’t realize that a good portion of the fish they catch in the Adirondacks have been raised in one of New York State’s 12 fish hatcheries. Each hatchery specializes in producing a select few species of fish.
The Adirondack Fish Hatchery facility in Lake Clear, located about 12 miles from Saranac Lake, produces 30,000 pounds of salmon yearly for release into regional lakes and rivers.
“There are two sources for eggs,” say Adirondack Fish Hatchery Manager Ed Grant. “The wild fish we catch from the pond and those we harvest from captive fish. That is about 500,000 eggs from wild fish and another 700,000 eggs from captive fish for 1.2 million eggs a year. That is the goal and we usually make it.”
The facility is open for free guided tours. The indoor visitor center contains a self-guided tour with a pool containing salmon, a monitor showing brood fish in a pond, and other exhibits on fish propagation. There is also a video in the Visitor’s Center showcasing the method necessary to produce all that yearly landlocked salmon. Inside the hatchery are 16 tanks holding approximately 275,000 fish; each tank is about 31’ in diameter and holds 8,000 gallons of water. Three of the tanks house the brood stock, the fish used to produce the eggs and milt for the next year’s stock, while the other 13 tanks hold the fingerlings that will be released into the wild now that it’s spring.
According to Grant tours are given throughout the summer and fall as well as certain times during the spring. He recommends that individuals call first during the spring if a tour of the whole facility is requested. Otherwise drop by the Visitor’s Center and Hatchery starting April 1 from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The springtime is a busy time as the staff is preparing to release the yearlings and fry into lakes and rivers.
“We have different ways of stocking fish,” says Grant. “The yearlings smolts go right into Lake Champlain. They are able to find a healthy habitat but they are not able to imprint. We also stock about 300,000 non-feeding fry in the Boquet, Ausable, and Saranac Rivers each year. A fry is a fish that first hatches from the egg and has lived off its yolk sac for a while and then it will start looking for natural food. Fry are placed and will stay in the river’s water stream until reaching the smolt stage. The fry then leave the stream environment for lakes but it has imprinted on a section of the river by its keen sense of smell. By requiring a certain number to imprint, we hope to recreate that natural process.”
For children it may be an opportunity to view a salmon for the first time. The next occasion that child and fish may meet could be in a match of wits over a hook and line.
The Adirondack Fish Hatchery is located off Route 30, approximately one mile south of Lake Clear. Call 891-3358 for more information.
It’s all happening tonight on New Year’s Eve. I hope everyone has a blast, listening, moving your bodies and celebrating. This is a great week to remember the amazing events of this past year and put a little thought into what you’d like to see happen in the new one. A toast to supporting and creating fantastic music in 2010. Thursday, December 31st:
Starting tonight at the Waterhole in Saranac Lake, The Route 73 Back Porch Society is playing. The show starts early during the Art Walk which runs from 4:30-7 pm. I’m sorry to say I haven’t heard these folks yet but from what I’ve been seeing they play around quite a bit. I love their name and I’m looking forward to the day I catch up with them.
The Horseshoe Lounge Playboys are doing a little Adirondack tour and you can see them in 3 separate locales. On Friday they will be in Elizabethtown at the Cobble Hill Inn. On Saturday they will be at The Waterhole and on Sunday they will be in Old Forge for The Lake Front Concert Series – the show starts at 7 pm. On Friday in Essex, After Five Brass will be performing at 7:30 pm. This is part of the Essex Community Concert Series. These concerts are held in the Community Church and are followed by refreshment and a chance to meet with the performers. There is a $10 cover.
Also on Friday in Tupper Lake at P2’sAiseiri is playing Irish music starting at 7:30 pm. It’s a good place to have a pint and enjoy some tunes. These are the folks who are putting on the Irish Festival Labor Day Weekend in Lake Placid.
Starting Friday, in North Creek on Route 28 the Upper Hudson Bluegrass Festival is on! There are so many acts that it’s important to check out the line up on their webpage, I’m listing just a few. It looks to be a pretty big deal with plenty of camping space. Starting at noon numerous bands play throughout the day including Don’t Quit Your Day Job and The WarrenCounty Ramblers continuing until 10 pm. Saturday starts at 9 am. The White Mountain Bluegrass Band is in the line up of the day, the founders of that group have been dubbed “Pioneers of Bluegrass” by IBMM. The Seth Sawyer Band is also on deck this weekend and the few YouTube videos I checked out were pretty nice – I’d like to see this band. Saturday ends with Tim Graves Band and Cherokee who start at 10 pm. and Sunday starts nice and early with a gospel sing at 8:30 am and finishes up with Smokey Greene from 4:30 until 5:15 pm.
I also want to mention that a performance of Smokey Joe’s Cafe starts Friday at The Depot Theatre in Westport. It will run thru September 6th with some special ticket price evenings (this Monday for instance) look at their website for details. The revue consists entirely of Lieber and Stoller‘s music – approximately 35 pop standards. I saw it on Broadway many years ago and was amazed at how many of the songs I not only recognized but could sing a long with.
At noon on Saturday in Lake Placid the LPCA presents the musical The Princess and The Pea. 50 children form the area will be part of this Missoula Children’s Theatre.
On Saturday in Lake Clear at Charlies Inn, local favorite, Steve Borst will be playing starting at 6:30pm.
In Jay on the 23rd Roy Hurd, Frank Orsini and Meadow are going to be presented by JEMS. Roy and Frank are seasoned performers and true Adirondack favorites. Meadow is Roy’s daughter – they sing beautiful harmonies together.
Last month, the New York Post outed retired CEO Sandy Weill for vacationing aboard a $45 million Citigroup jet as the foundering company he built received a $45 billion taxpayer bailout.
Ever since Congress scolded auto-industry executives for winging in on corporate jets to ask for government money, the flight habits of the highly paid have come under scrutiny.
But so far, the Adirondack Regional Airport in Lake Clear has seen no decrease in private plane traffic, according to manager Ross Dubarry. That’s good for the airport, because fuel sales, deicing and other services to Gulfstreams, Learjets, Falcons and other private craft cover approximately 75 percent of the airport’s $1 million annual operating budget. Lake Clear is the only place in the Adirondack Park with a runway long enough to accommodate big jets. Wealthy camp owners, including Weill, who has a retreat on Upper Saranac Lake, flock in on Fridays and out on Sundays. It can take as little as 40 minutes for them to soar in from Teterboro, just outside of New York City.
The other news at Adirondack Airport is that commercial-passenger numbers are way up, Dubarry reports, from about 2,000 emplanements in 2004 to more than 8,000 since Cape Air took over commuter service in February 2008. Cape Air flies nine-seaters and offers bargain rates (about $80 one-way) to Boston.
By far most visitors still reach the Adirondacks by car, but don’t expect to see Weill at a Northway rest stop. He voluntarily gave up his Citigroup Bombardier Global Express XRS the day after the Post story ran. But the 75-year-old, whose net worth Forbes placed at $1.3 billion in 2008, still pays the Adirondack Airport a $20,000 annual fee for services and space for his private hangar (the tallest building in Lake Clear). “He is coming in and out on a different aircraft,” Dubarry says. Image courtesy of Mark Kurtz Photography
The Plattsburgh Press Republican is reporting today that this weekend meeting of top military brass included chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen, Sir Graham Stirrup of Britain’s Royal Air Force, German Army Gen. Wolfgang Schneiderhan, French Army General Jean-Louis Georgelin and Italian Air Force General Vincenzo Camporini. According to the paper:
Defense Department officials wouldn’t comment this weekend, but the day after the planes had left, Capt. John Kirby, a special assistant to Mullen, confirmed that the top military leaders from five countries met in Lake Placid to discuss mutual security issues, including Afghanistan.
“I’m not at liberty to go into the details that was discussed, but they went through a wide range of security issues that are common to all five nations,” Kirby said.
“They discussed, in broad terms, progress in Afghanistan and where we’re heading with regard to Afghanistan, particularly the NATO mission there. And they discussed other mutual issues of security concerns.”
Security was tight at the Whiteface Lodge and Resort [and Spa] — the site where the military leaders were rumored to have stayed, though the resort would not confirm that. He said the meeting is an annual event that is rotated amongst the countries.
The U.S. military picked Lake Placid because while it’s relatively close to Washington, D.C., it’s still fairly tranquil, Kirby said.
“They try to choose sites that are relatively quiet that allow these leaders to focus on the issues and not be distracted by other things.”
There you have it, apparently no hunting, just a meeting, held in a “relatively close to Washington” luxury resort and spa – sounds like a junket to me.
Among the passengers of a large Boeing 757 airplane with “United States of America” printed on its fuselage were top members of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff and their counterparts from France, Germany and another country, possibly Great Britain, according to Barry DeFuria, a town of Harrietstown councilman and Airport Committee member who was there when the plane landed. A top military delegation from Italy flew in on a separate Falcon airplane, DeFuria said.
One commenter on the story had this to say:
I had a wild crazy daydream, that Bush will finally play his trump card and pull Bin Laden off that plane parked here in Lake Clear. Maybe a week before the election to save the McCain campaign, once all the Iraq and Afghan coalition brass are assembled for the photo op.
Why are they here in the Adirondacks? An all expenses paid – by our tax dollars – hunting junket? An October surprise?