Stories
Traveler & visitor information and tips
Summer in Saranac Lake is a festival in itself. The village has created a seemingly endless stream of events and happenings in the parks, on the water, and in the historic downtown area.Celebrate natureStop by the Paul Smith’s Visitor Interpretive Center (VIC) for the seasonal Teddy Roosevelt Bird Walks, held throughout the summer. The VIC also offers a wide range of programming events, children'... [Read More]
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Author:Sue Cameron
Categories:Paddling, Family fun, Events, Arts
If we have a yen for history, we've come to the right place. Saranac Lake has both a celebrated backstory and a devoted group of fans. This makes our local history museum something special.There is the lab itself, which has exhibits detailing the decades when Saranac Lake was an international curing center. There's also the addition built during the Roaring Twenties, which houses rotating... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Historic Downtown, Heritage, Family fun, Exhibits, Cultural
When it was announced that the Hotel Saranac would open again, with a classic refurbishment befitting its historic landmark status, the entire village was thrilled.Then we started getting calls and emails. Was it true? When would the hotel open? Can they make a reservation now? Turns out, the rest of the world is thrilled too.To understand the pull of this extraordinary hotel, we must consider... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Historic Downtown, Heritage
People often don't realize we have local farms near Saranac Lake. All kinds of crops flow from nearby fields into our restaurants, diners, and delis. This is one of the reasons our local dining is such a pleasure to experience.North of Saranac Lake, bordered by the McKenzie Mountain Wilderness to the east, and the Saint Regis Canoe Wilderness to the west, there is a broad plateau far more... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Spring, Heritage, Family fun, Conservation
The VIP TreatmentQuestion: What do you do when your best friend scores some free VIP seats for opening day at Fenway? Answer: Quick — book a Cape Air flight to Boston.Pay no attention to the fact that I’m not a Boston Red Sox fan. Nor to the fact that I’m not actually even a baseball fan. But come on  — a professional game of any sort is always a blast to experience in person. And I... [Read More]
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Author:Kim Rielly
Categories:
When spring comes, we can't wait to start the new season's fun outdoor activities. There are a few things to keep in mind to make our early spring ventures more enjoyable.While there are great advantages:clear air and high visibilityno bugs in the deep wilderness areasuncrowded conditionsThere are also some cautions:unpredictable weatherlower temperatures with wider swingsfussier equipment... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Spring, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Gear, Dog Friendly, Cycling
Spring Temperature FluctuationsSpring seemed to come in a hurry to the Tri-Lakes Region this year. It had already been a tough year for cross-country skiing, and I had to put my skis away for good in March. The last two years I skied into the middle of April. But open water on the lakes and warm temps meant I could find ducks moving through and stopping over on places like Lake Colby in Saranac... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Wildlife, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Dog Friendly, Birding
Daffest is our great big May event to celebrate the coming of spring with the blooming of thousands of daffodil bulbs throughout the Saranac Lake area. Each year the number of bulbs increases as the celebration grows. Come welcome spring with us from May 5–8.There are several popular and fun family friendly Daffest events you won't want to miss, including the sixth annual Daffest Derby, Daffest... [Read More]
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Author:Sue Cameron
Categories:Summer, Spring, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Music, Historic Downtown, Gear, Family fun, Events, Equipment, Cultural, Arts
Assemblage: A work of art made by grouping found or unrelated objects.By themselves, those objects are just discarded human possessions. They turn up along railroad tracks, deep in the wilderness, and behind construction sites. Moss-covered, half-buried, and forgotten, they've been left to rot and rust and decay in the Adirondack soil. They're everywhere, and most people don't want them.But... [Read More]
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Author:Shaun Kittle
Categories:Exhibits, Cultural, Arts
Wondering where to toss that bouquet? Saranac Lake has some amazing places for that dream wedding. Gorgeous wilderness backdrops, charming churches, giant fireplaces, and soaring "Great Rooms," along with picturesque docks and boathouses and wildflower meadows.We also have talented artisans to craft those wedding favors, letter those invitations, make those centerpieces, and help the happy... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Summer, Spring, Music, Family fun, Fall, Events
SARANAC LAKE — The historic village of Saranac Lake is reopening tuberculosis cure facilities throughout the village.A subset of parents have decided not to vaccinate their children over the last few decades, often citing pseudoscience that suggests that vaccinations have horrible side effects like autism. They’re often referred to as anti-vaxxers.Because of that, tuberculosis, once a disease... [Read More]
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Author:Jess Collier
Categories:Wellness, Historic Downtown
Saranac Lake has been a fascinating place for a long time. I never know when I'll run into a fun and interesting bit of trivia about its moments of fame. These interesting items can turn up anywhere along the town's history. Here's some from the first half of the twentieth century.revolutionary mop patent“Be it known that I, EDWARD DoBBINs, a citizen of the United States, residing at Saranac Lake... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Historic Downtown, Heritage, Family fun, Cultural
The sap is flowing in Saranac Lake! The Paul Smith's Visitor Interpretive Center has a classic maple syrup operation on the premises. I visited for the first Maple Syrup weekend of the season, but no worries if you missed out - there's still time to plan on visiting for the second weekend! This year it will take place on April 2 & 3, 2016.The colder areas of the North American continent... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Spring, Natural History, Family fun, Events, Conservation
Signs of SpringWhile winter has not yet been sent packing from our forecasts here in the Adirondacks, its rather light grip on us this year has been getting pried free by warm temperatures and fingers of sunlight. They have melted almost all of our snow and are now pressing on our frozen lakes to thaw. And our earliest arriving birds are responding to the cues.Blackbirds and SongA couple of weeks... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Wildlife, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Birding
We're spoiled here in Saranac Lake. We have so many cool dining spots a visitor can feel a bit overwhelmed about choosing. Each locally-owned eatery offers a unique take on their speciality, complete with a chef in the back, crafting each dish from scratch.Since we have three new dining spots people might not know about, I recruited friends and my husband to explore these latest offerings.... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Shopping, Family fun, Dining, Brewery, Beer
I typically don’t hike alone because I have a very hard time keeping a conversation with myself, and to be honest it’s just not that good of a conversation anyhow. Then I usually get a particular song stuck in my head, and all I keep doing is singing the chorus over and over again, because I can’t remember the rest. I know you know what I mean.With all of that, I still felt the need to get out... [Read More]
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Author:Spencer Morrissey
Categories:Spring, Saranac Lake 6er, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking
Spring Break in the ADKMarch has officially arrived! And, as the warmer weather starts to settle into the Adirondacks, we can't help but get that familiar itch to get out and enjoy all that the Saranac Lake Region has to offer. Here are a few ways growing up in a mountain town has taught me to enjoy spring break in the Adirondacks.Hit the trailsThere’s nothing my pup, Sam, and I love more than... [Read More]
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Author:Marjorie Waterson
Categories:Spring, Snowshoe, Saranac Lake 6er, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Family fun, Dog Friendly
When I get a free day, there is nothing I like better than finding some comfy seating with a good book. Did you know that Saranac Lake not only contributed to the long history of medical cures? We also contributed to the short history of reclining chairs. So, climb into your comfiest Adirondack chair, grab a hot drink, and prepare to learn a little bit about just how much of an impact Saranac... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Shopping, Heritage
Flocks of Feeding BirdsWinter birding across the region often involves searching for specialty birds which migrate to our area or linger during the cold months. With our warblers, flycatchers, vireos, and others long gone, this usually means we are looking for flocks of birds – many of which visit yards and bird feeders to help get them through this lean time of year.Bohemian Waxwings Have Been... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Wildlife, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Birding
Movie buffs will remember the 1977 movie Close Encounters of the Third Kind in which a bunch of people that have each individually experienced a UFO sighting are inexplicably and irresistibly drawn to one common geographic location in Wyoming. That story was fictitious, but in real life, it’s as if there is a giant beacon near Lake Flower that transmits a signal with a gravitational pull... [Read More]
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Author:Kim Rielly
Categories:Theatre, Music, Cultural, Arts
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The complex of buildings at the edge of Saranac Lake is known as "Will Rogers," since that was the name for much of its history. But it started in 1929 as the National Vaudeville Artists' Home; a tuberculosis curing facility for people in show business. It was a future destination for a tall young magician. He bounded onto the stage in New York City. Before he could begin his act, he felt a... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Arts, Heritage, Wellness
During Saranac Lake's years as a tuberculosis curing center, people got off the train... alone. They had left everyone behind, and were worried that it might be years before they saw them again.Patients had to create a whole new set of social connections for themselves. Some of the new people they met would become close friends. Some of them would be more of a romantic attachment.There was a... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Heritage, Cultural
A Sluggish StartIt's a fact that our cross-country skiing season did not start quickly or with a lot of snow this year. While we have a had a few great days in mid-January, they've been followed by an icy, rainy affair with little white powder left to help hide the hard, silver ice beneath. Take a misstep and you soon find out that our snow in many places has only been a veneer which hides slick... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Wildlife, Skiing, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Family fun, Dog Friendly, Cross Country Skiing
Carnival Style: A class all its ownTravelers to the Adirondacks in any given February will surely behold an unusual sight (or two) as they come upon the super-cool village of Saranac Lake. Walking along the streets, sipping coffee in a restaurant, or simply shopping at the grocery store, one is sure to encounter myriad characters, costumes, and just super-cool carnival celebrities.To the... [Read More]
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Author:Kim Andresen
Categories:winter, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Events
What is the draw of the Debar Mountain Wild Forest? Why does it in intrigue me so much that I must go back and play, time and again? I can only guess it’s the friendly forests and the surprisingly unique views that the mountains provide. This new territory for Brandon and I would be an exciting day of interesting finds and steep, rocky terrain.With our rucksacks packed to near capacity we both... [Read More]
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Author:Spencer Morrissey
Categories:Snowshoe, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking
I love shopping Saranac Lake's historic downtown. The recent holiday season lured me there, where I found unusual gifts for many of the folks on my list. They were all great hits for the recipients.Our historic downtown is pedestrian-friendly, with plenty of parking. There's an abundance of benches, dining spots, places for coffee and baked goodies, and a river running through the center of it.... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Shopping, Historic Downtown, Family fun, Cultural
When we have special dietary needs, it's easy to feel like there is "nothing to eat." But in the Saranac Lake area, we have fresh food prepared in kitchens with real chefs in the back. Our servers will be sympathetic and quick to check with them. We'll fill that plate in no time.Specialty dining is not just close to my heart; it's close to my stomach. I've been dining gluten free since 2010. This... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Shopping, Historic Downtown
The Thing Everyone Wants to DoWhenever anyone comes to visit me in Saranac Lake there is always one thing on their to-do list: feed the Gray Jays along the Bloomingdale Bog Trail. They are a sought-after boreal species which draw many birders to our area, but more than that they are simply fun to observe. So whether it is my birding brothers looking for species they can’t find at home or my niece... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:winter, Wildlife, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Hiking, Family fun, Fall, Dog Friendly, Birding
Snowshoeing is the fastest growing winter sport in the world. Because it's so easy, and so much fun. Appropriate for any age and skill level, too.If we are hikers who don't want to stop getting outdoors just because it's winter, this simple addition to our gear collection will let us hit those same trails in a new way. Whether our trail is packed down or brand-new, snowshoes let us actually hike... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Snowshoe, Family fun, Dog Friendly
In winter, our friendly forests grow hushed with snow, and our lovely lakes freeze over. We are dedicated to having fun all year 'round, and that includes a few creative options.When people think of our Winter Carnival, they think of our snowy landscape. But there's more to Carnival than that. In Saranac Lake, "ice" is far more than something to throw in our drinks. We have fun with it!ice... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Events
2015 Top 3 Blogs in ReviewWe scoured our blogs for the most popular, most informative, and just downright oddest pieces from the past year. In case you missed them on the first go-round, here are our top three picks from the Saranac Lake Region.3. A Century of Ice PalacesSaranac Lake has a long history of building amazing structures from ice as a centerpiece of their Winter Carnival festivities.... [Read More]
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Author:Kim Andresen
Categories:winter, Summer, Spring, Outdoor Recreation, Heritage, Family fun, Fall
There's never a dull moment in Saranac LakeThe hardest thing about attending First Night Saranac Lake is knowing where to start. At its core, the event is more than a family-friendly New Year's Eve celebration. It's more like a smorgasbord of all things Saranac Lake. That means there's so much art, music, dancing and revelry crammed into the little mountain village it's impossible to see it all.... [Read More]
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Author:Shaun Kittle
Categories:winter, Theatre, Music, Family fun, Arts
The Dewey Mountain Recreation Area is a great place for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in the winter, and it’s also great in the warmer seasons for hiking and mountain biking. It’s really close to Saranac Lake Village, just one mile west of downtown Saranac Lake on Rte. 3, but you would never know you’re that close to town.It’s like being in the middle of nowhere up on the top of the... [Read More]
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Author:Tom Boothe
Categories:winter, Snowshoe, Skiing, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Family fun, Cross Country Skiing
In a place with abundant Adirondack wilderness and gorgeous vistas at every turn, it's difficult to qualify different levels of view. We have a long shoreline with Lake Flower, across the street from the Town Hall, and it takes minutes to walk to this view:With incredible views everywhere a person turns, can I really choose the top five views in Saranac Lake? Well... I can choose my own top five!... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Summer, Spring, Snowshoe, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Fall
When I moved to the Adirondacks a few months ago, I knew it would be great for outdoor activities, but I did not know what to expect as far as scheduled “events.” So imagine how excited I have been, with something going on every weekend -and often on weekdays -here in the Saranac Lake Region! Here are a few upcoming events that I definitely won’t miss during my first winter in the Adirondacks!... [Read More]
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Author:Chelsea Cook
Categories:winter, Snowshoe, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Events
Do you know where the Hays Brook trails are? They are a couple miles north of the Paul Smiths Visitors Interpretive Center (everyone calls it “The VIC”) to the right off Rte. 30. Look for a brown and yellow sign, drive in two-tenths of a mile and park. The trails are up the small road you can see heading off the parking lot.It’s a wonderful place. The trails are designated horse trails - I’ve... [Read More]
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Author:Tom Boothe
Categories:
So you’re looking to indulge? You have most certainly come to the right place! Put on a pair of pants with an elastic waist and let me take you on a delicious tour of Saranac Lake!BreakfastYou’re definitely going to want to start off the day with coffee. Head to Origin Coffee Co., and try one of the many yummy coffee drinks they brew there. I usually go for regular coffee black, but they have... [Read More]
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Author:Jess Collier
Categories:winter, Historic Downtown, Hiking, Fall, Cultural, Beer
 The Trot comes to Saranac LakeI am, by no means, a runner. So the first time my co-worker Frank asked if I wanted to do a turkey trot, I was a little skeptical. What could possibly be appealing about getting out of bed on one of those rare days I get the chance to sleep in? (I should probably mention that during the work week, my shift doesn't start until 11 am, so I actually get to sleep... [Read More]
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Author:ADK Grasshopper
Categories:winter, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Events, Dog Friendly
Black Pond LoopDistance, round-trip: 2.5 milesTime: 2 to 3 hoursBrief Overview: Heading in a clockwise direction from the trailhead, the trail starts flat and quickly comes to a lean-to on the western shore of Black Pond before coming to a narrow trail on a steep side slope. Continuing on, you will come to an intersection at the north end of Black Pond. Crossing the outlet, you will... [Read More]
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Author:Spencer Morrissey
Categories:winter, Outdoor Recreation, Hiking, Family fun
Saranac Lake is not the usual shopping. It's a real Adirondack browsing paradise. Instead of big, bustling, and impersonal, we are small, quiet, and very friendly. We offer some items which can be found nowhere else, because they are handcrafted by our own Adirondack artists and artisans.Many of our shopping opportunities are found in our scenic, walkable, historic downtown. Bounded on the north... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wellness, Shopping, Historic Downtown, Family fun, Fall, Events, Cultural
Here in the Adirondacks, there doesn't have to be much snow on the ground for us to have fun on it. Saranac Lake loves Dewey Mountain, whether we want to cross-country ski or snowshoe. This great destination is right in town, too.Generations have enjoyed the recreational possibilities of this mountain. With community and town support, it keeps getting better.a long historyIn the late 1800s people... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Snowshoe, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Cross Country Skiing
Tubing in Saranac Lake is fun and friendly. Pretty much, if a person can sit down, they can go tubing - Adirondack style! The complex at Mount Pisgah Veteran's Memorial Ski Center (we just call it Pisgah for obvious reasons) is a great place for winter fun, and their tubing hill is a popular attraction.If I'm going out with a group of my friends, tubing is tops on our list of fun activities... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun, Cultural
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When I moved to the Adirondacks in August of 1999, it was after living on Long Island, and working in New York City, for eighteen years. Saranac Lake was a big change for me.But I was seeking change. After years in the workforce, I was going back to school. After only seeing my brother and nephew on visits, I would be living in the same town. They would become guides to my new life.culture shockI... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:winter, Skiing, Outdoor Recreation, Family fun
Relaxing RetreatSaranac Lake is a retreat for the creative mind. As many people travel to Saranac Lake they often have the question, “what’s there to do?” In all reality the question should be, “what’s there not to do?” This question of course would finally have us at a loss for words. This is because Saranac Lake has such a wide variety of activities for all ages, and interests. For the outdoor... [Read More]
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Author:Mary Gallagher
Categories:Theatre, Family fun, Exhibits, Events, Arts
There are many Halloween tales to be told in our corner of the Adirondacks. Some are well-known and some are well-hidden. This particular spooky bit of history is very obscure, even in Saranac Lake. The most well-known figure in the story, John Brown, actually rests in peace at his Lake Placid farm. But he does not rest there alone. a bizarre proposal If a stranger asked if they could... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Fall, Heritage
Birds on the MoveAt this time of year I pay special attention to the birds migrating through the various lakes of our region, and each day finds Wren and me out somewhere to see what’s on the move. My favorite place to check in the fall is the railroad tracks along Lake Colby in Saranac Lake where the waterfowl migration is just beginning to pick up. While the past several weeks have been good... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Wildlife, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, Hiking, Fall, Birding
Once upon a time, all an avid hunter needed was an Adirondack Guide and a campfire. The storied abundance of local hunting and fishing were an early attraction bringing visitors to our wilderness. This was especially true once W.H.H. Murray (aka Adirondack Murray) wrote "Adventures in the Wilderness," which was published in 1869.The six million acres of the Adirondack Park still offer a... [Read More]
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Author:Pamela Merritt
Categories:Wildlife, Natural History, Hunting, Fall, Conservation
A wonderful family filled day of fun can be found right in the heart of Brighton. A town located just outside the Village of Saranac Lake and spreading through the Hamlet of Paul Smith’s. Brighton offers a tremendous amount of history, feasts, and fun. HistoryBrighton is overflowing with history starting in 1815 when the first settlers appeared to this small town. There were railways created... [Read More]
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Author:Mary Gallagher
Categories:winter, Shopping, Paddling, Outdoor Recreation, Heritage, Family fun, Fall
No matter if you have great artistic ability or are like me, without an artistic bone in your body, I have a recommendation for an afternoon activity that is sure to make you smile - and help decorate your home or office in the process! Paint and Sip is a two-hour painting event that combines a simple painting lesson and cocktails for an enjoyable afternoon of creativity! Everything you need is... [Read More]
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Author:Chelsea Cook
Categories:Family fun, Fall, Events
Hanging onto SummerWith our current change in weather on the way, Wren and I set out to enjoy one of the last warm days of the fall. I wanted to paddle, so we went to Little Green Pond where we parked and immediately set out for a hike. Wren does not particularly like being confined to the canoe so I wanted to let her run around and play for a while before we paddled. We hiked along Little Clear... [Read More]
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Author:Alan Belford
Categories:Wildlife, Summer, Outdoor Recreation, Natural History, foliage, Fall, Dog Friendly, Birding

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