Not that long ago, or at least within living memory, Cleverdale on the east side of Lake George was home to fewer than five year-round families; the children attended a one-room school house on Ridge Road. A common footpath followed the shore, allowing residents to walk to church in summer.
Modern times, however, came quickly enough. Lakefront residents appropriated the sections of footpath that crossed their lawns. New York State acquired 28 acres on Sandy Bay and planned to build a public beach and picnic area there, a prospect so alarming to local residents, they sought to purchase the tract themselves. Eventually, the state reconsidered, perhaps as a result of pressure applied by some politically well-connected locals, and the land is still undeveloped. » Continue Reading.
National Grid has set aside five acres in Queensbury as a conservation easement for the rare Karner blue and frosted elfin butterflies.
The property is expected to support these butterflies by providing habitat for breeding, feeding, sheltering and range expansion. The land will serve as a dedicated butterfly preserve adjacent to an existing electric transmission line right-of-way owned and operated by National Grid, near Upper Sherman Avenue. » Continue Reading.
An article in the Post Star on July 16 by reporter Amanda May Metzger announced that the Zip-flyer, the thrill ride from the top of French Mountain in Queensbury-Lake George, has received its final Town of Queensbury approvals.
The 900-foot ride on three inch steel cables running down a 35-50 foot wide swath cut on the north face of French Mountain at the very entrance of the Adirondack Park has been controversial from the moment it was proposed. Adirondack Wild asked the NYS Adirondack Park Agency (APA) to convene a public hearing on the project because only through a hearing could all the impacts and viable alternative routes for the Zip-Flyer be discussed comprehensively and openly. APA Staff did not recommend a hearing, and APA members, to my memory, did not even raise the possibility of a hearing. Adirondack Wild strongly disagreed with the APA’s decision in March to issue a permit in the absence of a hearing. Several actual or anticipated project impacts, including visual impacts along State Route 9, loss of the scenic values and hiking opportunities on the summit, consistency with the area’s Rural Use classification and Towers Policy, and rigorous analysis of alternatives, among others, went largely unaddressed in the APA’s discussion and permit conditions. » Continue Reading.
The Annual Feeder Canal Alliance 5 mile Canoe/Kayak Race and Recreational Paddle will be held on Saturday June 7th with registration beginning at 8:30 am the day of the race and the race going off promptly at 10 am.
The event will begin at the Feeder Dam, located at the end of Richardson Street in Queensbury, only 1.2 miles from exit 18 on the I87 and finish at the Martindale Boat Basin located on Martindale Avenue in the village of Hudson Falls. The race passes through Queensbury, Glens Falls and Hudson Falls, providing paddlers with unique views of local parks, neighborhoods and the Feeder Canal itself. » Continue Reading.
Recently the Warren County Soil & Water Conservation District received funding from the Lake Champlain Basin Program for a program called “Soil Savers”. The program is starting with a Conservation Celebration educational event, open to all on Saturday, April 26th from 9 am to 1 pm at Hovey Pond Park, 25 Lafayette Street in Queensbury.
Many people do not realize that Hovey Pond Park is part of the Lake Champlain Watershed since it is so close to the Hudson River. However, Halfway Brook flows north alongside Glenwood Ave. on the eastern side of the park and eventually enters the Champlain Canal in Fort Ann. » Continue Reading.
The gap between legislative intent to protect the open space resources of the Adirondack Park and the APA’s analysis of project impacts in accordance with the law widened into a chasm in 2012 when the agency approved the Adirondack Club and Resort by a 10-1 vote.
Now, the Agency has also approved by 10-1 vote a Zipline thrill ride down scenic French Mountain above the Village of Lake George at the entrance to the Adirondack Park. That development will not engender statewide publicity nor, I suspect, a lawsuit. Nonetheless it requires the cutting of a 900-foot swath, 35-50 feet wide, down a steep and wild mountainside. According to Agency staff, the steel cables would be highly visible from many vantage points; in some views the cables would be silhouetted above the mountain, and the cut would resemble a utility line. The thrill ride benefits exactly one business in a resort community. » Continue Reading.
The protection of water quality is of singular great importance for the Adirondack Park and Adirondack communities. In the coming decades, if we are able to maintain stable water quality trends, this will help Adirondack communities enormously, not only for protecting the area’s high quality of life, but economically too. Clean water will be our edge.
Clean water is going to be a commodity that becomes less plentiful in the future. Communities that provide good stewardship for their waters will be communities that have something special to offer in the coming years. » Continue Reading.
As part of Queensbury’s 250th anniversary celebration, the Chapman Museum has opened a new exhibit, Queensbury’s Boom: from Country to Suburb. The exhibit explores the post World War Two development of Queensbury from a rural township to a bustling community.
Using materials gleaned from archives at the Chapman, the Queensbury Town Historian, Crandall Public Library Center for Folklife, History and Culture, and the Warren County Records Center, the exhibit features the history of early housing tracts such as Cottage Hill, the first shopping centers on Upper Glen, the Queensbury school, the Warren County Airport, and popular tourist attractions that sprang up along Route 9. » Continue Reading.
Sometimes my husband and I take turns doing something special with the children. We each need our own one-on-one time with our son and daughter. Each child also gets that special time with a parent where he/she doesn’t have to compete for attention.
Last year my son and I attended the Adirondack Balloon Festival. Since we live outside of Saranac Lake, making the 5:00 am Big Balloon Breakfast at the Floyd Bennett Memorial Airport hanger in Queensbury was no mean feat. The biggest challenge wasn’t so much the early drive but getting my son out of bed. He agreed much later on that is was definitely worth the trip. » Continue Reading.
Residents of Glens Falls and surrounding communities are organizing an effort to establish a retail food cooperative, a store similar in organization to the Saranac Lake Community Store which opened late last year. The group has already incorporated and established an interim board of directors and several committees. They are currently pre-selling memberships and are outfitting donated space at Rock Hill Bakehouse. “While the space is in South Glens Falls (near Exit 17N), making it somewhat inconvenient for those of us in Queensbury and Glens Falls to get to, we all agreed it would be better to have a donated incubator for this project rather than start it from a position of debt (which causes many coops to fail),” Matt Funiciello, a co-op organizer told the Almanack via e-mail. “We decided that beginning a capital campaign to raise money and perhaps to secure grants to move to a location closer to (or in) Glens Falls would be wise as soon as that becomes practicable.”
They are about $2,000 away from achieving their goal of an estimated $6,000 needed to pay for opening inventory, Funiciello said. Membership forms are available daily at Rock Hill Café (19 Exchange Street Glens Falls, (518) 615-0777), and at Rock Hill Bakehouse (1338 Route 9 Moreau, NY (518) 743-1660). Co-op organizers have also established a webpage and a Facebook group where the membership form and additional information can be found.
* Please note the correct time for drop off to McCauley Mountain Ski Swap is Saturday from 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.!
Being an active family, my kids seems to outgrown their sporting gear before I’ve finished tying up the laces. For other parents looking to outfit their children for the winter ski season, a ski swap is a nice starting place. A ski swap can also be a much-needed opportunity to clean house.
Generally the ski swaps are consignments where you drop off your gear, helmets, and winter clothing a day before the event. If the gear sells then you will receive 80% of the set sale price. Usually the funds generated benefit a special organization like ski clubs or ski patrols so the 20% commission goes to support the sport. It is best to ask what each ski swap’s arrangement is, as it varies with location. Keep in mind no “collector’s items” like wooden skis and only clothing in good condition. Ski Club Swaps
Lake Placid: November 5, 9:00 a.m. – noon In Lake Placid, the Lake Placid Ski Club/NYSEF Ski Swap is asking for any winter gear from cross-country skis, boots, roller blades, helmets as well as current downhill ski equipment. Any winter clothing in good shape will be accepted. For questions please call Lake Placid Ski Club President Carol Hoffman at 524-6914. This is the first year that Lake Placid Ski Club and NYSEF are doing a combined Ski and Skate Swap at St. Agnes Gym in Lake Placid. 80/20 split, no rear entry boots or straight skis and no gear donations. Drop off equipment to consign on November 4 from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Queensbury, November 5 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. November 6, 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. This annual event at West Mountain is touted as one of the largest ski swaps in the area. Drop off for consignments is Friday (11/4) from 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. and Saturday (11/5) from 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.. They are accepting any new and pre-owned ski or snowboard gear. No straight skis or rear entry boots. They are looking for any outerwear and accessories as well as skis, boots, helmets and snowboards. Proceeds benefit the West Mountain Ski Patrol and Race Team.
Old Forge, November 5, 9:00 a.m. – noon This annual Polar Bear Ski Club Ski Swap at McCauley Mountain will be the place to find deals on new/used ski and snowboard equipment. Drop off is Friday evening from 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. and on Saturday between 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. They are looking for any winter sporting gear and winter clothing in good condition. This event is not restricted to ski or snowboards but will accept helmets, ice skates, hockey equipment and cross-country ski gear. This event will benefit the Polar Bear Ski Club, which sponsors ski races for youth in cross-country skiing, downhill and biathlon.
Speculator, November 19, 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. This is a new event for Oak Mountain and a bit different from the traditional ski swap. For a $20 “table” free (if reserved by the 16th or $25 after the 16th) the consignor can sell anything from boats, ATVs, snowmobiles as well as skis, gear and sport clothing. The only requirement is that it has to be sporting goods. The table fee will benefit the Friends of Oak Mountain, which continues to support upgrades to Oak Mountain. There will also be refreshments for sale.
Barely inside the Blue Line, the Adirondack Bar and Grill on Route 149 in Queensbury is our southernmost venue in the eastern part of the Adirondack Park. Known as Len & Peg’s nearly 10 years ago, and in the ‘70s as Two Squires, the Adirondack Bar and Grill has been owned by Jim Valastro for the past 9 years. Known for their community involvement, they host fundraisers throughout the year for the well-known Make-A-Wish Foundation and the lesser known Leather and Lace motorcycle club.
Spacious, grassy grounds with a few mature trees provide the comfort of shade in an otherwise sunny backyard. The parking lots on two sides can readily accommodate a large crowd for fundraising activities and serve as a launch pad for snowmobiles. On this early September afternoon, the deck out back appeared to have potential for plenty of seating, but was not set up for use. Rustic wood and mounted wildlife and fish are the theme for the bar area. Unfinished plank walls brighten the interior and lend their piney scent. With seating for 16 to 18 patrons, the long bar could easily seat more if needed. Several tables dispersed around the bar offer additional seating for overflow or just a little more privacy.
Our Adirondack Bar and Grill guide for the afternoon, avid hunter and Adirondack outdoor writer Dan Ladd, places this tavern among his favorite local meeting places any time of year, categorizing it as a workingman’s bar and a traveler’s restaurant. (We still haven’t determined if we are related to Dan, but we definitely have some interests in common.) You can follow Dan online at Adkhunter.com. During the summer, the restaurant is most often populated with people passing to and from eastern New York and other easterly states. In the winter, the Adirondack Bar and Grill is a popular spot on the Warren and Washington County snowmobile trail. Once the dead end of Washington County’s sled route, the trail now connects with Warren County’s, opening access all the way to Maine. Locals and tourists can comfortably co-mingle at the bar.
The bar is open year round, 7 days per week from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. weekdays, and 11 a.m. to 12 or 1 a.m. on the weekend. They are closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Single and duo acoustic entertainment is featured regularly on Fridays and occasionally on Saturday, and our host, Dan, has been known to appear here as a soloist himself. Happy Hour is from 4 to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and the complimentary hors d’oeuvres are purported to be beyond the ordinary Happy Hour offerings.
Although they don’t boast unique drinks, our bartender, Laurie, was happy to create something unique for Pam based on her base request for flavored vodka. It’s generally a beer and basic mixed drink bar, but they seemed willing and able to accommodate special orders. A modest variety of drafts and over 20 bottled beers are served here. Although Kim didn’t get to try anything new to her, the Sam Adams Seasonal hit the spot.
A wide selection of bar fare is served including sandwiches, burgers, nachos (we had them loaded) and chicken wings, all in the $6 to $10 range. Thursday is wing night: $4.95 a dozen, starting at 6 p.m. (no takeout for this deal) and a prime rib dinner is featured on Saturdays.
Whether stopping in for a drink, food or both, the Adirondack Bar and Grill meets a variety of tastes and preferences. Like so many we have visited before, this one deserves a wintertime visit.
Kim and Pam Ladd’s book, Happy Hour in the High Peaks, is currently in the research stage. Together they visit pubs, bars and taverns with the goal of selecting the top 46 bars in the Adirondack Park. They regularly report their findings here at the Almanack and at their own blog, or follow them on Facebook, and ADK46barfly on Twitter.
The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) will hold its regularly scheduled monthly meeting on Thursday, April 14 and Friday April 15, 2011 at APA Headquarters in Ray Brook, NY. The meeting will be webcast live on the APA website.
Topics for this week’s meeting will include a shoreline structure setback variance from the Town of Moriah, after-the-fact hunting and fishing cabins on Heartwood Forestland Fund lands, an 85-unit housing development at Lake Placid, amendments to Agency approved Local Land Use Programs for the Town of Queensbury and the Town of Chester, a revised Civil Penalty Guidance, updates to the Agency’s Delegation Resolution, and more. The Full Agency will convene on Thursday morning at 9:00 for Acting Executive Director James Connolly’s report where he will review monthly activities and introduce a resolution in support of Earth Day and the International Year of Forests 2011.
At 9:15 a.m., the Regulatory Programs Committee will consider a proposed shoreline structure setback variance from the Town of Moriah for a series of structures within the mean high water mark of Lake Champlain, a proposed permit amendment to approve after-the-fact hunting and fishing cabins on lands now owned by the Heartwood Forestland Fund and an 85-unit multi-family housing development proposed by Rangeview at Lake Placid, LLC.
At 1:00, This month, Town of Schroon Lake, Essex County Supervisor Cathy Moses will provide the Community Spotlight with an overview of her Essex County community. Supervisor Moses will discuss town accomplishments, opportunities and challenges ahead.
At 1:45, the Enforcement Committee will hear a first reading of the revised Civil Penalty Guidance. The guidance is intended to assist Agency staff determine appropriate, fair civil penalties for violations.
At 2:30, the Administration Committee may take action on comprehensive updates to the Agency’s Delegation Resolution which delegates certain powers and responsibilities.
At 3:15, the Park Policy and Planning Committee will receive a staff briefing on the Agency’s Geographic Information System and detailed soil mapping.
At 4:00, the Regulatory Programs Committee will reconvene for a staff update on a recently issued permit for the control of the invasive Asian Clam in Lake George.
Friday morning at 9:00, the Local Government Services Committee will deliberate proposed amendments to Agency approved Local Land Use Programs for the Town of Queensbury and the Town of Chester. The committee will also host a presentation from Roger Trancik and Bill Johnston on the recently completed project, “Hamlets 3: Planning for Smart Growth and Expansion of Hamlets in the Adirondack Park.” “Hamlets 3” examines three case studies to illustrate ways to design residential and commercial growth areas by building on existing community centers.
At 10:45, the Full Agency will assemble to take action as necessary and conclude with committee reports, public and member comment.
Meeting materials are available for download from the Agency’s website.
The May Agency is scheduled for May 12-13, 2011 at Agency headquarters in Ray Brook.
June Agency Meeting: June 9-10 at the Adirondack Park Agency Headquarters.
The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) will hold its regularly scheduled monthly meeting on Thursday, February 10 at APA Headquarters in Ray Brook. The February meeting is one day only and will be webcast live. The meeting will be webcast live.
Among the issues to be considered is a boathouse variance, bridges and culverts in the Park, development in Queensbury and Westport, Green programs at the Golden Arrow Resort in Lake Placid, and a presentation on alpine meadow vegetation. Here is the full agenda:
The Full Agency will convene on Thursday morning at 9:00 for Executive Director Terry Martino’s report where she will present the 2010 annual report.
At 10:45 a.m., the Regulatory Programs Committee will consider a request for a shoreline structure setback variance to authorize the construction of stairs onto an existing boathouse. The project site is located on First Bisby Lake in the Town Webb, Herkimer County. Jim Bridges, Regional Design Engineer, and Tom Hoffman, Structure Engineer, from the NYS Department of Transportation will then brief the committee on the status of bridges and culverts inside the Adirondack Park.
At 1:00, the Full Agency will convene for the Community Spotlight presentation. This month Town of Brighton Supervisor John Quenell will discuss issues and opportunities facing this Franklin County town.
At 1:45, the Local Government Services Committee will consider approving an amendment to revise the Town of Queensbury’s existing zoning law. The committee will also hear a presentation from the Town of Westport to utilize a Planned Unit Development (PUD) in conjunction with a linked Agency map amendment process to establish growth areas within the town.
At 3:00, the Economic Affairs Committee will hear a presentation from Jenn Holderied-Webb from the Golden Arrow Lakeside Resort in Lake Placid on “green programs.” The Golden Arrow Resort implemented unique initiatives to establish itself as an environmentally friendly resort.
At 3:45, the State Land Committee will hear a presentation on alpine meadow vegetation.
At 4:15, the Full Agency will convene will assemble to take action as necessary and conclude with committee reports, public and member comment.
Meeting materials are available for download from the Agency’s website.
The March Agency is scheduled for March 17-18, 2011 at Agency headquarters in Ray Brook.
April Agency Meeting: April 14-15 at the Adirondack Park Agency Headquarters.
The Adirondack Ski, Snowboard & Snowmobile Spectacular, a three-day event dedicated exclusively to winter sports, will be held at the Adirondack Sport Complex (The Dome) in Queensbury, NY (at Northway, Exit 18) this weekend, October 29, 30 & 31.
The Spectacular was established to provide information, education and entertainment, according to event organizer Jeff Fraser. The event features a combination of exhibits, hands on demos, feature areas and thousands of products and services for skiers, snowboarders & snowmobilers including Fashion Snow Shows, Tubby Tube Rides, A BMX Park, Rockwall and The Sky Riders Aerial Show. The highlight of the weekend for many is the 12,000 square foot Giant Ski, Snowboard & Snowmobile Swap, an opportunity to turn your old equipment into cash, or find great deals on “previously enjoyed” snowmobiles, skis, boots, poles, boards, clothing or accessories. If you have equipment to sell, it can be dropped off at The Adirondack Sports Complex (The Dome) today until 8 pm or tomorrow, Friday October 29th between 8 am and 2 pm. Your equipment will be catalogued, tagged, and you’ll receive a receipt.
Sellers will need to return to The Dome on Sunday October 31st between 3 pm and 6 pm to see if your gear has sold. Unclaimed or abandoned items will be donated to a local charity.
Admission: A one day General Admission is $7.50; Children under 10 admitted free with paid adult admission; A three day admission is $9.00. All carded High School race team members get in “free” Friday, October 29th 4 pm – 9 pm with one paid adult admission.
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