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Publisher George Hearst III Editorial Janet Reynolds Executive Editor Brianna Snyder Associate Editor Brittany Lenotti Editorial Intern Design Tony Pallone Design Director Colleen Ingerto, Emily Jahn Designers Contributing Writers John Adamian, Phil Brown, KathyÂ Ceceri, MichaelÂ Hamad, Brittany Lenotti, StaceyÂ Morris, Gillian Scott Contributing Photographers Paul Barrett, Carl HeilmanÂ II, Colleen Ingerto
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Sales Kurt Vantosky Sr. Vice President, Sales & Marketing Kathleen Hallion Vice President, Advertising Tom Eason Manager, Display Advertising Craig Eustace Retail Sales Manager Jeff Kiley Magazine Sales Manager Circulation Dan Denault Home Delivery Manager Business Ray Koupal Chief Financial Officer TimesUnion.com Paul Block Executive Producer Explore is published four times per year. If you are interested in receiving home delivery of Explore magazine, please call: 518.454.5454. For advertising information, please call: 518.454.5358.
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contents in every issue 6 Calendar of Events » Spring 2013 16 Our Backyard » Local gems to visit 34 Off the Beaten Path » Quebec City 39 Just the Two of Us » Niagara Falls 42 Last Call » Phil Bayly on Jackson Hole, Wyo.
page 16 — PHOTO BY MICHAEL P. FARRELL/TIMES UNION ARCHIVES
features ART 18 Wait a Minute! » Celebrating the One-Minute Film Festival at MASS MoCA MUSIC 22 Turn of the Cards » Annie Haslam and Renaissance return with a new album
page 22 — PHOTO BY RICHARD BARNES
THEATER 25 The Artist’s Curse » The complicated nature of painter Mark Rothko in play form OUTDOORS 26 Muckety Muck » Hitting the trails in mud season 30 Rogers Rock » Grand-scale rock-climbing adventure
on the cover
— PHOTO BY CARL HEILMAN II
Stills from the One-Minute Film Fest at MASS MoCA. Read the story on page 18.
— PHOTOS COURTESY MASS MOCA; PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY EMILY JAHN
page 39 — PHOTO BY COLLEEN INGERTO
calendar spring 2013 Music Classical College of Saint Rose Massry Center for the Arts 1002 Madison Ave., Albany Saturday, April 13: College of Saint Rose Camerata Season Finale. 7:30 p.m. For the final concert of its 10th season, the Camerata will perform works by Aaron Copeland, Claude Debussy, Michael Daugherty and Samuel Barber. Friday, April 19: Saint Rose Jazz Ensemble. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 20: Saint Rose Chamber Choir. 8 p.m. Sunday, April 21: Saint Rose Clarinet Choir and Saxophone Ensemble. 3 p.m. Sunday, April 21: Saint Rose Women’s Chorale. 7 p.m. Monday, April 22: Saint Rose Chamber Jazz. 8 p.m. Friday, April 26: Saint Rose Masterworks Chorale. 8 p.m. Saturday, April 27: “Iridescence” Flute & Harp Duo, Jan Vinci & Karlinda Caldicott. 7:30 p.m. Sunday, April 28: New Music Ensemble. 7 p.m. Monday, April 29: Brass Choir and Percussion Ensemble. 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 30: Madrigal Ensemble. 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 2: Music Industry Recording Ensemble. 8 p.m. Friday, May 3: Saint Rose Campus Band. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 4: Saint Rose Orchestra. 8 p.m. Sunday, May 5: Saint Rose Wind Ensemble. 8 p.m. Friday, May 17: APM and the Albany High School Chorus present Albany Sings. 7:30 p.m. A benefit for the upstate chapter of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.
The Egg Empire State Plaza, Albany theegg.org (518) 473-1845 Saturday, April 27: Time for Three. 7:30 p.m. The groundbreaking, category-shattering string trio transcends traditional classification, with elements of classical, country western, gypsy and jazz idioms forming a blend all its own.
Emma Willard School Kiggins Hall 285 Pawling Ave., Troy friendsofchambermusic.org (518) 273-8135 Saturday, April 20: Friends of Chamber Music — Horszowski Trio with William Ferguson. 8 p.m. The Ernest Livingstone Memorial Concert Jesse Mills, violin Raman Ramakrishnan, cello Rieko Aizawa, piano William Ferguson, tenor Haydn: Piano Trio in G Major, Rorem: The Auden Poems, for Tenor and Dvorak: Piano Trio in F minor, Op. 65.
EMPAC 110 8th St., Troy empac.rpi.edu Saturday, June 1: American Music Festival: 7:30 p.m. The Albany Symphony welcomes legendary American pianist, Emanuel Ax, who makes his debut with the orchestra as the centerpiece of the American Music Festival.
1st Presbyterian Church 369 Warren St, Hudson Saturday, April 13: Bard at the Landing: Einstein’s Mozart: Two Geniuses. 6 p.m. Einstein’s Mozart is a full-evening work that was commissioned by the Colorado Chamber Players to commemorate the close convergence of the centenary of Einstein’s “Miracle Year” (19052005) and Mozart’s 250th birthday (1756-2006). Saturday, May 18: Arnold Steinhardt and Lincoln Mayorga. 6 p.m. A musical celebration of their 75th birthdays, their life-long friendship, and musical journeys beginning in Hollywood and extending around the world.
Hubbard Hall 25 E. Main St, Cambridge Sunday, April 7: The Boston Conservatory Honors String Quartet concert. 2 p.m. Featuring Schumann’s piano quintet and Tchaikovsky’s Souvenir de Florence sextet.
Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center 14 Castle St, Great Barrington, Mass. mahaiwe.org (413) 528-6415 Saturday, April 20: Grand Piano Trios I. 6 p.m. Erin Keefe, violin; Jeffrey Swann, piano; and Yehuda Hanani, cello join together for this evening of fascinating contrasts including
LEGENDARY AMERICAN PIANIST Emanuel Ax makes his debut with the Albany Symphony Orchestra as the centerpiece of the American Music Festival at EMPAC on June 1. — PHOTO BY LISA MARIE MAZZUCCO the works of Schubert and Schoenfield. Saturday, May 18: Grand Piano Trios II. 6 p.m. Mozart, Beethoven and Ravel’s works are highlighted by an all-star lineup including Yehuda Hanani, cello; Roman Rabinovich, piano; and Itamar Zorman, violin.
Palace Theatre 19 Clinton Ave., Albany palacealbany.com (518) 465-3334 Saturday, April 27: Albany Symphony presents Kevin Cole Plays Gershwin (Carnegie Hall Preview). 7:30 p.m. “Three Gs”: Gershwin, Gould and Gatsby. George Gershwin’s Second Rhapsody, also known as the “Rhapsody in Rivets” or “New York Rhapsody,” will feature the artistry of one of the orchestra’s favorite collaborators, Kevin Cole. Pre-concert talk is at 6:30 p.m.
Proctors 432 State St., Schenectady proctors.org Sunday, April 21: Schenectady Symphony Orchestra. 3 p.m. This season’s concerts explore the themes and ideas that inspire great composers and musicians, featuring soloists whose roots are in the Capital Region.
Schenectady County Community College
Lally Mohawk Room
815 N. Broadway, Saratoga Springs cms.skidmore.edu/zankel (518) 580-5000 Thursday, April 11: Faculty Recital, Pola Baytelman. 8 p.m. Pieces by Scarlatti and Mozart performed on the Anton Walter fortepiano, along with compositions by Schubert, Crumb, Ginastera and Mendelssohn. Friday, April 19: Skidmore Community Chorus. 8 p.m. Accompanied by orchestra, the Skidmore Community Chorus and Vocal Chamber Ensemble will perform three pieces: Brahms, Shicksalslied; Faure, Pavane; Argento, I hate and I love. Saturday, Apr 20: Faculty Recital, Shelley Smith, Flute. 2 p.m. Smith has performed with the Muncie Symphony Orchestra and Lake George Chamber Orchestra, appearing as a soloist for the latter, as well as for the Skidmore College Orchestra and University of Akron Symphony Orchestra. Accompanied on piano by Patricia Hadfield. Sunday, April 21: Los Angeles Guitar Quartet. 8 p.m. The LAGQ comprises four uniquely accomplished musicians who bring
78 Washington Ave., Schenectady sunysccc.edu Monday, April 29: SCCC Guitar Ensemble Concert. 7:30 p.m. Music for guitar.
Taylor Auditorium Tuesday, April 23: SCCC Alumni Wind Ensemble Concert. 7:30 p.m. Directed by Professor Brett Wery, this exciting concert will feature an ensemble comprising School of Music alumni from the past 20 years with Michele Von Haugg (clarinet),Keith Pray (saxophone), Bob Halek (drums), Kevin Grudecki (guitar), and Lou Smaldone (bass). Wednesday, May 1: SCCC Jazz Ensemble, SCCC Percussion Ensemble and SCCC Jazz Combo. 7:30 p.m. Monday, May 6: SCCC Chorus and Vocal Chamber Ensemble. 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 7: SCCC Chamber Winds Ensemble. 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 10: SCCC Wind Ensemble. 7:30 p.m.
Zankel Music Center
new energy to the concert stage with programs ranging from Bluegrass to Bach. Wednesday, April 24: Skidmore Concert Band. 8 p.m. Directed by Mike Medenbauer. Thursday, April 25: Skidmore Guitar Ensemble. 8 p.m. Friday, April 26: Skidmore Small Jazz Ensembles. 8 p.m. Sunday, April 28: Skidmore Wind Ensemble. 3 p.m. Sunday, April 28: Skidmore String Ensembles. 7 p.m. Monday, April 29: Skidmore Big Band. 8 p.m. Directed by Mark Vinci.
Troy Savings Bank Music Hall 30 Second St., Troy troymusichall.org (518) 273-0038 Wednesday, April 24: The Swedish Chamber Orchestra. 7:30 p.m. The orchestra presents works by Beethoven and Brahms. Saturday, May 11: Albany Pro Musica: Bach’s St. Matthew Passion. 7:30 p.m. Named one of the “Milestones of the Millennium” by National Public Radio and called “one of the greatest choral works of all time” by Artistic Director David Griggs-Janower.
Tuesday, May 14: Kinderhook Bank presents: Music at Noon: Findlay Cockrell. 12 p.m. Saturday, May 18: Albany Symphony presents Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. 7:30 p.m. Canadian Baroque Violinist Aisslinn Nosky joins the orchestra for a historically-informed performance of all four concerti. The program also includes a charming neo-baroque orchestral work by Igor Stravinsky from 1937. Preconcert talk is at 6:30 p.m.
Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church
University at Albany
Bethel Woods Center for the Arts
Performing Arts Center
1400 Washington Ave., Albany albany.edu/pac (518) 442-3997 Wednesday, April 10: Williams Chamber Players. 7:30 p.m. Pianist Doris Stevenson and violinist Joanna Kurkowicz perform works by Brahms and Greig with a compelling synergy of charisma, musical command and virtuosity. Sunday, Apr 21: Duo Opera Recital. 7 p.m. Renowned singers Maria Todaro (mezzo-soprano) and Louis Otey (baritone), stars of The Metropolitan Opera, NYC Opera and dozens of other operas houses around the world, present a concert of opera arias and duets with a few surprises. Monday, April 22: Victoria von Arx. 7 p.m. This faculty member and pianist performs works by Bach, Beethoven and Schumann. Wednesday, April 24: The Choral Hour. 7 p.m. The University-Community Chorale and University Chamber Singers perform. Thursday, April 25: Talavya. 7:30 p.m. This globe-trotting percussion ensemble brings the Indian hand-drum to center stage. Rushi Vakil, Kaumil Shah, Sahil Patel and Rahul Shrimali perform works composed by Indian music maestro Pandit Divyang Vakil. Monday, April 29: The Sound of the Trumpets, the Roll of the Drums. 7 p.m. The UniversityCommunity Concert Band and the University Percussion Ensemble present a shared concert. Sunday, May 5: UniversityCommunity Symphony Orchestra. 3 p.m. A group of students, faculty and community musicians present symphonic favorites under the direction of conductor Christopher Neubert. Tuesday, May 7 - Wednesday, May 8: Student Recitals. 7 p.m. A host of performers showcase their vocal and musical talents as part of their developmental studies.
74 First Street, Pittsfield, Mass. Sunday, April 7: Berkshire Music School presents New England Brass Band. 4 p.m. A 30-piece brass and percussion ensemble founded in 1988, adheres to the instrumentation of the “British Brass Band” tradition.
Pop, Rock, Folk, Country and Jazz 200 Hurd Road, Bethel bethelwoodscenter.org (866) 781-2922 Friday, May 3: Steep Canyon Rangers. 8 p.m. Bluegrass.
College of Saint Rose 432 Western Ave., Albany strose.edu (800) 637-8556 Thursday, April 18: Nicholas Payton With Ninety Miles
With Stefon Harris And David Sanchez. 8 p.m.
William Randolph Hearst Center for Communications and Interactive Media 996 Madison Ave., Albany Friday, April 12: “Garage to Glory” fourth annual talent showcase. 8 p.m. Saint Rose music industry and communications majors assist in organizing, promoting and presenting the fourth annual competition co-sponsored by the Times Union. Students help to select the finalist who will perform, interview the bands at the event and produce the videos of the performances.
The Colonial Theatre 111 South St, Pittsfield, Mass. thecolonialtheatre.org (413) 997-4444 Sunday, April 7: Jimmy Sturr. 2 p.m. Often called the King of Polka, Jimmy Sturr, recipient of 18 Grammy Awards, is the hottest musical attraction in the polka field.
Friday, April 19: Jay Stolar. 8 p.m. Stolar is a soul singer with an arsenal of heart gripping songs. Friday, May 31: Yarn. 8 p.m. Brooklyn-based Americana/ alt-country.
Crandall Public Library 251 Glen St., Glens Falls Thursday, April 11: Mayfly. 7 p.m. Mayfly (Katie Trautz & Julia Wayne) is a Vermont-based band that performs old-time New England and Appalachian music, as well as original songwriting on guitar, fiddle, mandolin, banjo and vocals. Thursday, April 18: PossumHaw. 7 p.m. PossumHaw is a dynamic, original bluegrass and folk quintet from Burlington, Vt. Thursday, April 25: Quickstep. 7 p.m. Quickstep is from Saratoga Springs and plays a diverse repertoire of original and old-time music.
Empire State Plaza, Albany theegg.org (518) 473-1845 Sunday, April 7: Al DiMeola & Gonzalo Rubalcaba. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 10: Graham Parker & The Rumour. 7:30 p.m. British pub-rocker Graham Parker has reunited his band the Rumour. The band’s original line-up — Graham Parker, Brinsley Schwarz and Martin Belmont on guitars, Steve Goulding on drums, Andrew Bodnar on bass and Bob Andrews on keyboards — will perform music from the ‘70s as well as its new record Three Chords Good. Tuesday, April 16: Eddie Jobson. 8 p.m. A retrospective of Jobson’s outstanding 40-year career. An internationally recognized electric-violin pioneer and keyboard icon, Jobson and his hand-picked virtuoso band perform music from his acclaimed solo albums. Friday, April 26: Leo Kottke. 8 p.m. An evening with the acoustic guitar virtuoso.
Foothills Performing Arts Center 24 Market St., Oneonta Sunday, April 7: An Evening with Branford Marsalis. 8 p.m. American saxophonist, composer and bandleader.
Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art 87 Marshall St, North Adams, Mass. massmoca.org (413) 664-4481 Saturday, Apr 13: Darlingside. 8 p.m. This Western Massachusetts-based stringrock quintet formed in 2009 and has quickly taken hold in New England’s musical imagination. Playing over 100 shows during its first year of touring, the band has created a seamless, exhilarating sound at the intersection of rock, classical, and folk music. Saturday, April 20: Dan Deacon. 8 p.m. Electronic composer and indie icon/instigator Dan Deacon has spent his career exploring
GLOBE-TROTTING PERCUSSION ENSEMBLE Talavya bring the Indian hand-drum to center stage at the University of Albany on April 25. — PHOTO COURTESY RRM PRODUCTIONS
calendar spring 2013 idioms as disparate as house beats, large-scale orchestral works, and whimsical college pop. Saturday, April 27: The Lisps: Futurity. 8 p.m. Futurity is an original indie-rock musical by the Lisps, a Brooklyn-based coed assemblage of 21st-century theater-prone indie rockers whose songs border the literary and borrow liberally from vaudeville, anti-folk, science fiction, and Americana.
Old Songs Community Arts Center 37 S. Main St., Voorheesville oldsongs.org/index.html (518) 765-2815 Friday, April 19: Brother Sun. 8 p.m. National touring artists Joe Jencks, Greg Greenway and Pat Wictor combine their considerable talents as Brother Sun. The trio’s harmonies, as much as their lyrics, tell what they are about: warm as a campfire, stirring as a gospel church, rousing as a call to arms. Saturday, April 27: Comas. 8 p.m. Comas is the Irish Gaelic word for “power,” and this band lives up to its name. Fiddle player and vocalist Aidan Burke delves deep into his Irish roots to pluck out a pure sound that is guaranteed to touch any lover of Celtic music, and his dexterity is evenly matched by the talents of Isaac Alderson (flutes, pipes, vocals), Philip Masure (guitar, cittern, bouzouki, vocals), and Jackie Moran (bodhran, various percussion, vocals).
Palace Theatre 19 Clinton Ave., Albany palacealbany.com (518) 465-3334 Thursday, April 18: Scotty McCreery. 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 9: Sandy Hackett’s Rat Pack Show. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 11: Joe Bonamassa. 8 p.m. Blues. In support of Bonamassa’s brandnew solo album Driving Towards The Daylight.
Proctors 432 State St., Schenectady proctors.org/ (518) 346-6204 Thursday, Apr 11: The Farm. 7:30 p.m. Featuring the talents of Nick Hoffman, Damien Horne and Krista Marie, three friends who have put their own distinct spin on the traditional sound of country music. Friday, April 12: Party Horns NYC. 7:30 p.m. Afroskull.
Saturday, April 20: Vishtèn. 7:30 p.m. Accomplished multiinstrumentalists and stepdancers, these musicians bring fiddle, guitar, accordion, pennywhistle, banjo, mandolin, piano, jaw-harp and bodhran into each awe-inspiring, joyful performance. Saturday, April 20: Voca People. 8 p.m. Full of energy and bursting with fun, this international hit features over 70 a cappella and beat box versions of the songs you and your whole family will love, including favorites from Madonna, Queen and even Mozart. Sunday, April 21: Schenectady Symphony Orchestra. 3 p.m. Pieces by Tchaikovsky, Arutunian and Beethoven. Friday, May 10: Peggy and Pete Seeger in concert. 7 p.m. Folk legend Pete Seeger reunites with his younger sister Peggy for a rare concert, in celebration of Pete’s 95th birthday. Saturday, May 11: Tom Rush. 7:30 p.m. American folk and blues singer, songwriter, musician and recording artist. Tuesday, May 14: Dougie MacLean. 7 p.m. Legendary Scottish songwriter, storyteller, guitarist, fiddler and magical performer, MacLean has for many years led an evolution of Scottish music and song.
8 p.m. Originally from Rio, Claudio Roditi is an influential trumpet and flugelhorn player who has been on the U.S. jazz scene since studying at Berklee College of Music in 1970.
The Sanctuary for Independent Media
1400 Washington Ave., Albany albany.edu/pac (518) 442-3997 Monday, April 15: University Jazz Ensemble. 7 p.m. The midsized ensemble presents concerts of popular jazz standards.
3361 Sixth Ave., Troy mediasanctuary.org (518) 272-2390 Tuesday, Apr 9: Oliver Mtukudzi and The Black Spirits. 7 p.m. Oliver Mtukudzi is gifted with a deep and gusty voice plus a talent for writing songs that reflect on the daily life and struggles of the Zimbabwe people.
Saratoga Performing Arts Center Route 50 and Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs spac.org Saturday, May 25 - Sunday, May 26: Dave Matthews Band. 7 p.m. The jam-band road warriors return for their perennial twonight stint.
Schenectady County Community College Taylor Auditorium 78 Washington Ave., Schenectady Tuesday, April 16: Empire Jazz Orchestra Masters Series featuring Claudio Roditi, trumpet.
Siena College Beaudoin (Foy Theatre) Hall 515 Loudon Road, Albany Friday, May 3: Second Annual Spring Cabaret. 8 p.m. Featuring the Siena College choirs, members of Stage III theatre club and students in Intermediate Singing Technique.
Troy Savings Bank Music Hall 30 Second St., Troy troymusichall.org (518) 273-0038 Saturday, April 13: Julie Fowlis, Music of the Scottish Isles. 7:30 p.m. Brought up in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides, on the isle of North Uist, Julie Fowlis is a proud standard bearer for Gaelic music and culture and one of the Western Isles’ true contemporary treasures. Saturday, April 27: Jake Shimabukuro. 8 p.m. Jake and his ukelele effortlessly mix jazz, rock, classical, traditional Hawaiian music and folk.
University at Albany Performing Arts Center
Dance Performance The Egg Hart Theatre Empire State Plaza, Albany Sunday, April 21: Pilobolus — Classics. 7:30 p.m. Pilobolus, the modern movement company founded in 1971, still wears its revolutionary stripes on its sleeves with inventive, athletic, witty, collaborative performance works using the human body as a medium for expression. The Company mines its vast repertoire as it performs its “Classics” program.
SPANK! THE FIFTY SHADES PARODY brings all the naughty fun of the best-selling book to life at The Egg, May 2-3. — PHOTO COURTESY SPANK! THE FIFTY SHADES PARODY
Skidmore College Zankel Music Center 815 N. Broadway, Saratoga Springs cms.skidmore.edu/zankel (518) 580-5000 Sunday, April 7: An Evening with the Ballets Russes. 3 p.m. A performance of three famous ballets from Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes, the evening will include Les Sylphides (Fokine/ Chopin); L’Apres Midi d’un Faune (Nijinsky/Debussy); and Firebird (Limoli after Fokine/ Stravinsky). The ballets will be staged by Denise Warner Limoli and performed by Skidmore ballet and modern dancers. Anthony G. Holland will conduct the Skidmore Orchestra.
Troy Savings Bank Music Hall 30 Second St., Troy troymusichall.org (518) 273-0038 Saturday, May 4: Synesthesia. 8 p.m. An array of musical and visual artistry for an exceptional evening of modern dance, live music, and contemporary art.
Williams College ’62 Center for Theatre and Dance 1000 Main St, Williamstown, Mass. williams.edu/go/62center (413) 597-2425 Friday, April 19 - Saturday, April 20: Sankofa. 8 p.m., 8 p.m., “Sankofa” comes from the Akan people in Ghana and loosely translates to “reaching back in order to move forward.” Sankofa
choreographs original material that incorporates popular song, drums, hip-hop, break dance, spoken word, poetry, and sheer creative ingenuity. Friday, May 3 - Saturday, May 4: CoDa. Original student and faculty work.
Family Fun Congregation Ohav Shalom Krumkill Road,, Albany Wednesday, May 1 - Thursday, May 2: Albany Symphony presents Tiny Tots with Cowboy Dave. A Tiny Tots Program, supported by Vanguard/Albany Symphony.
Join Cowboy Dave, the roughest, toughest cowboy conductor of all time for an action packed, interactive musical trail-ride. Introduce your favorite young cattle roper, to some great symphony music with the help of Cowboy Dave. You’ll dance, clap, and move in this entertaining 40 minute presentation suitable for children ages 3-8.
The Egg Empire State Plaza, Albany theegg.org Sat, Apr 13: Dinosaur Petting Zoo. 11 a.m. Erth’s Visual & Physical Theatre takes an interactive, prehistoric journey through an incredible cast of dinosaurs that inhabited our world millions of years ago. An up-close-andpersonal visit with these amazingly life-like creatures.
Henry Hudson Planetarium Albany Heritage Area Visitors Center Quackenbush Square, Albany albany.org Saturday, April 20 - Saturday, Dec. 21: Henry Hudson Planetarium Saturday Star Shows. Interactive program explores the stars, planets, comets, and constellations in the night sky. Two shows are offered the third Saturday of every month.
25 E. Main St, Cambridge Saturday, April 13 - Saturday, April 27: Eenie eenie Music. Introduce your child to basic musical skills through play, lots of fun new songs and chants, and how to use them in life both in and out of music clytass.
Malta Community Center 1 Bayberry Dr., Ballston Spa malta-town.org (518) 899-4411 Sunday, May 19: Pirate & Princess Adventure. 2 p.m. Kids ages 4-10 will love dressing as their favorite pirate or princess and participating in an exciting themed adventure at the Malta Community Center.
New York State Museum 264 Madison Ave., Albany nysm.nysed.gov (518) 474-5877 Saturday, April 20 - Saturday, June 15: Family Fun Day. 1 p.m. The museum offers fun for the whole family with games, crafts, and other theme-based
activities. Held the Saturday of every month.
Palace Theatre 19 Clinton Ave., Albany palacealbany.com Friday, April 12: Disney Live! Mickey’s Music Festival. 7 p.m. Mickey Mouse and friends rock the world with the stars from The Little Mermaid, Aladdin and Disney/Pixar’s Toy Story in their new touring show Disney Live! Mickey’s Music Festival. Disney hits are remixed to the hottest sounds of today featuring hip hop, pop, swing, reggae, rock, country and much more. Friday, May 10: Super WHY! Live “You’ve Got The Power.” 6 p.m. Based on the top-rated, Emmy-nominated preschool TV series that airs on PBS KIDS every day across the U.S., Super WHY Live brings entertainment and education together in a live show unlike any your family has seen before.
Stage Albany Civic Theater 235 Second Ave., Albany albanycivictheater.org Friday, May 3 - Sunday, May 19: The Oldest Profession. As Ronald Reagan enters the White House, five aging practitioners of the oldest profession are faced with a diminishing clientele, increased competition for their niche market, and aching joints. With wit, compassion, and humor, they struggle to find and learn new tricks as they fight to stay in the Life.
Charles R. Wood Theater
207 Glen St, Glens Falls atfestival.org (518) 874-0800 Friday, May 3 - Sunday, May 5: Glens Falls Community Theatre presents Harvey. This production features one of modern theater’s most beloved characters, Elwood P. Dowd. Charming and kind, Dowd had only on character flaw: an unwavering friendship with a 6-foot tall invisible rabbit named Harvey. In order to save the family’s social reputation, Elwood’s sister Veta takes Elwood to the local sanatorium, but the doctor’s mistakenly commit his anxietyridden sister and Elwood — and Harvey — slip out of the hospital unbothered, setting off a hilarious whirlwind of confusion and chaos as everyone in town tries to catch a man and his invisible rabbit.
College of Saint Rose Campus Theatre 996A Madison Ave., Albany Friday, April 19 - Sunday, April 21: Radio Heaven. Where did vintage radio shows go
once they’d been broadcast? Enjoy the classic soap opera, comedy, suspense and how-to shows, and wonderful annoying commercials.
Curtain Call Theatre 210 Old Loudon Road, Latham curtaincalltheatre.com (518) 877-7529 Sunday, April 7 - Saturday, May 11: Our Son’s Wedding. Love and marriage Italian-style: an Italian-American plumber and his wife arrive at their son’s wedding to another man. Complications erupt in a humorous story of a family that needs to let go of the past and forge a new future together. Friday, May 24 - Saturday, June 22: Miracle on South Division Street. The Nowaks of Buffalo always thought they were special, ever since Clara’s father, an immigrant from war-torn Poland, had a miraculous vision in his barbershop. But 65 years later, Clara’s youngest daughter has stopped going to mass, her son is dating a Jewish girl, and a
deathbed confession causes the family legend to unravel with unexpectedly hilarious results.
The Egg Empire State Plaza, Albany theegg.org Thur, May 2 - Fri, May 3: SPANK! The Fifty Shades Parody. The comedy musical brings all the naughty fun of the bestselling book to life.
Fort Salem Theater 11 E. Broadway, Salem fortsalemtheater.com (518) 854-9200 Saturday, April 20: Echoing Back: The Songs of Johnny Mercer. 7:30 p.m. Four Broadway performers in a new musical revue. One of the founding partners of Capital Records, Mercer’s writing and singing career spanned over 60 years of changing musical styles, from “Come Rain or Come Shine” to “Moon River.” Saturday, April 27: Beautiful Girls: Celebrating Sondheim’s Women. 7:30 p.m. The
production brings back three of the Fort’s favorite gals, regional theater and soap opera performer Kathleen Devine, Broadway singer Florence Hayle, and recording artist Lynne Kerr, in a tuneful and slightly irreverent salute to Broadway icon Stephen Sondheim, with songs ranging from “I Feel Pretty” to “Send in the Clowns.”
Hudson Valley Community College Maureen Stapleton Theatre 80 Vandenburgh Ave., Troy hvcc.edu/culture (518) 629-8071 Tuesday, May 7: An Evening with Stephen Sondheim. 6:30 p.m. Legendary American theatre composer and lyricist, Stephen Sondheim talks with Mary Darcy, owner/editor of alloveralbany. com. Prelude concert by local favorites, Sonny & Perley.
AN EVENING WITH STEPHEN SONDHEIM Legendary American theater composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim talks at Hudson Valley Community College on May 7. — PHOTO BY JERRY JACKSON
Capital Repertory Theater 111 N. Pearl St, Albany capitalrep.org (518) 445-7469 Friday, April 19 - Sunday, May 19: Red. Iconoclastic Mark Rothko, the misanthropic Abstract-Expressionist painter, confronts his decision to accept a lucrative commercial commission. Extolling the virtues of his art as “expressing the big emotions — tragedy, ecstasy, and doom,” Rothko drills his new assistant about the dangers of selling out and as they work together, the roles of student and teacher reverse, forcing Rothko to face his own demons about reality and his ultimate place in the pantheon of great artists.
calendar spring 2013 Mac Haydn Theatre
1925 Route 203, Chatham machaydntheatre.org (518) 392-9292 Thursday, May 23 - Sunday, June 2: The Fantasticks. The 45th season opens with the world’s longest-running musical, and one of the six shows that made up Mac-Haydn’s first season in 1969. The story of two young lovers, their interfering fathers, a swashbuckling rogue, and the illusions and disillusionment they go through before reaching their enlightened finale is told with equal parts charm and comedy.
Proctors 432 State St, Schenectady proctors.org/ (518) 346-6204 Sunday, April 7 - Sunday, April 14: A Soldier’s Play. Capt. Taylor, the white C.O. in a Louisiana army camp in 1944, has a problem. He commands a black company whose sergeant has been murdered. He is worried the murderer may be a white officer or the local Klan. A black captain, Richard Davenport solves the case and the truth is even more shocking than the murder itself. Presented by Classic Theater Guild, Inc. Tuesday, April 9 - Sunday, April 14: Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan. Tony Award nominee Cathy Rigby takes flight in an all-new production of Peter Pan. Discover the magic all over again of this two-time Emmy Award winning and two-time Tony award nominated production. Friday, April 26: Cirque Zuma Zuma. 8 p.m. Acrobats, tumblers, lion dancers, contortionists, singers and gymnasts band together for the high-flying, off-the-wall spectacle of rhythmic music and pulse-pounding movement that could only be Cirque Zuma Zuma. Tuesday, April 30 - Sunday, May 5: Les Miserables. Cameron Mackintosh presents a brand new 25th-anniversary production of Boublil & Schönberg’s legendary musical with glorious new staging and dazzlingly reimagined scenery inspired by the paintings of Victor Hugo. This new production has been acclaimed by critics, fans and new audiences and is breaking box office records wherever it goes. Thursday, May 9: Shen Yun Performing Arts. 7:30 p.m. Shen Yun brings to life 5,000 years of Chinese civilization through classical Chinese dance and music in an exhilarating show you will never forget.
AMY SCHUMER, whose Comedy Central special was the second-highest-rated last year, brings her great, hilarious routine to The Egg on April 13. — PHOTO COURTESY AMY SCHUMER Friday, May 31 - Sunday, June 9: Doubt. Written with an uncanny blend of compassion and detachment, it is an inspired study in moral uncertainty with the compellingly certain structure of an old-fashioned detective drama. Presented by Classic Theater Guild.
Sand Lake Center For The Arts 2880 Route 43, Averill Park slca-ctp.org (518) 674-2007 Friday, May 10 - Sunday, May 19: A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Shakespeare’s comic tale of mixed up love and lovers manipulated by woodland fairies is presented by Circle Theatre Players.
Schenectady Civic Playhouse 12 S. Church St., Schenectady civicplayers.org (518) 382-2081 Friday, May 3 - Sunday, May 12: Sunday in the Park with George. One of the most acclaimed musicals of our time, this moving study of the enigmatic painter Geoges Seurat won a Pulitzer Prize for its deeply insightful and highly personal examination of life through art and the artist.
Schenectady County Community College Taylor Auditorium 78 Washington Ave., Schenectady Wednesday, April 10 Saturday, April 14: A Midsummer Night’s Dream. 7:30 p.m. In the fantasy forests of ancient Thebes, all manner of faerie and mortal lovers are matched and mismatched and matched yet again. This classic comedy starts with discord and ends with the theatrical celebration of marriage and love.
SLOC Musical Theatre (Schenectady Light Opera Company) 427 Franklin St, Schenectady sloctheater.org (877) 350-7378 Friday, May 10 - Sunday, May 19: Sweet Charity. 8 p.m. Charity is a girl who wants to be loved so much that she has lost sight of who she is.
Spa Little Theater Saratoga Spa State Park, Saratoga Springs Friday, April 19 - Sunday, May 5: Leading Ladies. Two washedup Shakespearean actors hit
bottom — performing Scenes from Shakespeare on the Moose Lodge circuit in Amish country.
Steamer 10 Theatre 500 Western Ave., Albany timesunion.memlink.com (518) 438-5503 Saturday, April 13 - Sunday, April 28: Pippi Longstocking. Swedish author Astrid Lindgren’s flame-haired, pigtailed adventuress gets a stage adaptation. Friday, May 17 - Sunday, May 19: The Little Foxes. Theater Voices performs a staged reading of Lillian Hellman’s 1939 Southern drama about greed, selfishness and violence, and the women who are trapped by them.
University at Albany Performing Arts Center 1400 Washington Ave., Albany albany.edu/pac (518) 442-3997 Wednesday, Apr 17 - Saturday, April 27: In the Next Room. In the twilight of the Victorian age, a buzz-worthy new medical device is developed to calm women with “hysteria.” A pioneering young doctor struggles to understand this new therapy while his wife schemes to
experience the treatment that sends women away from her husband’s office flushed and glowing. Wednesday, May 1: American Place Theatre in The Giver. 7:30 p.m. Winner of the 1994 Newbery Medal, Lois Lowry’s richly, provocative novel was published 20 years ago and is still widely read today. In a dystopian world where all is the same, 12-year-old Jonas is selected to receive the memories of a far different life.
Comedy The Egg Empire State PLaza, Albany theegg.org Thursday, Apr 11: David Sedaris. 8 p.m. NPR humorist and bestselling author David Sedaris has become one of America’s pre-eminent humor writers. The great skill with which he slices through cultural euphemisms and political correctness demonstrates that he is a master of satire and one of the most observant writers addressing the human condition today. Saturday, April 13: Amy
Schumer. 8 p.m. Amy is the creator, star and writer of Inside Amy, her Comedy Central television show that will premiere next year. Amy’s onehour stand-up special, Mostly Sex Stuff, was Comedy Central’s second-highest-rated special this year, and she was one of the featured comedians on the Roast of Roseanne and the Roast of Charlie Sheen.
The Colonial Theatre 111 South St, Pittsfield, Mass. thecolonialtheatre.org (413) 997-4444 Friday, May 10: Joan Rivers. 8 p.m. A force of nature and one of the hardest-working celebrities in the world, Joan Rivers is an entertainment legend of unparalleled accomplishments. A woman of many talents, Joan is perhaps best known as an internationally renowned comedienne.
Proctors 432 State St., Schenectady proctors.org Saturday, May 18: Nobodies of Comedy. 8 p.m. These newest and funniest comics to hit the scene are no different, and they’ll prove that laughter is the best medicine with an evening of standup that will leave you in stitches.
Fairs & Festivals Albany Institute of History & Art 125 Washington Ave., Albany albanyinstitute.org (518) 463-4478 Saturday, April 20: Hudson Valley Hops. 4 p.m. Celebrate the history of brewing in the Hudson Valley and sample the finest local craft brews.
Michael J. Quill Irish Cultural and Sports Centre 2267 Route 145, Durham mjqirishcentre.com (518) 634-2286 Saturday, May 25 - Sunday, May 26: East Durham Irish Festival. Two days of Ireland in America with musical entertainment, dancing, food and activities for all ages. Children have their own entertainment area featuring singalongs and a professional storyteller.
Village of Lake George Canada Street, Lake George lgcraftshows.vpweb.com Saturday, May 18 - Sunday, May 19: Lake George’s Italian Festival. Food, crafts, artisans and more.
Washington County Fairgrounds 392 Old Schuylerville Road, Greenwich washingtoncountyfair.com (518) 692-2464 Saturday, May 4 - Sunday, May 5: Washington County Antique Fair. More than 200 vendors from around the USA and Canada. Dealers bring their treasured antiques, collectibles, and crafts.
Washington Park Madison Ave., Albany (518) 428-0056 Saturday, May 11 - Sunday, May 12: The 65th-annual Tulip Festival. Historic events take place annually, including the scrubbing of State Street, the tradition of the Tulip Queen Coronation, Tulip Queen and Court Luncheon and Royal Tulip Ball. As always, Saturday and Sunday include the added excitement of children’s activities, craft vendors, delicious food and multiple stages with nationally acclaimed musical performances. Sunday’s events
include the 14th Annual Mother of the Year Award.
Words & Ideas Albany Institute of History & Art 125 Washington Ave., Albany albanyinstitute.org (518) 463-4478 Sunday, April 7: Making the Circus American. 2 p.m. In this series, invited scholars analyze American values and ideals to enhance our experience and understanding of our world. Matthew Wittmann, curatorial fellow, Bard Graduate Center, will show how Americans took a European cultural art and transformed it into the iconic railroad circuses that grew into one of our most popular entertainment forms.
Albany Law School
80 New Scotland Ave., Albany Wednesday, April 10: 19th Annual Kate Stoneman Day. 5:30 p.m. Patricia J. Williams, the James L. Dohr professor of Law at Columbia Law School and author of The Alchemy of Race and Rights: Diary of a Law Professor, will deliver the keynote speech at the 19th Annual Kate Stoneman Day. Stoneman was the first woman admitted to practice law in New York state and the first female graduate of Albany Law School in 1898.
College of Saint Rose
will receive an introduction to an agent or publisher appropriate for his or her book. Thursday, April 11: Frequency North: Meg Kearney and M. Bartley “Matt” Seigel. 7:30 p.m. Kearney’s most recent collection of poems, Home By Now, was winner of the 2010 PEN New England LL Winship Award. Seigel is founder of [PANK] a nonprofit literary arts collective that includes PANK Magazine, the Little Book Series and the Invasion Readings across the country.
Saint Joseph Hall Auditorium 985 Madison Ave., Albany Monday, April 15: William Randolph Hearst Symposium on Innovations in Communications. 4 p.m. Scott M. Sassa, president of Hearst Entertainment and Syndication, will address the revolution in communication and culture driven by emerging media.
EMPAC 110 Eighth St., Troy empac.rpi.edu (518) 276-3921 Wednesday, April 17: N. Katherine Hayles: Performing Technogenesis: The Affective Power of Digital Media. 6 p.m. In this lecture, N. Katherine Hayles will explore the co-evolution of technical objects and contemporary humans. Wednesday, May 1: David Link: Software Archaeology. 6 p.m. Media archaeologist and artist David Link will discuss software archaeology through historic examples, such as the early computer, Ferranti Mark 1.
Hubbard Interfaith Sanctuary
Hudson Valley Community College
959 Madison Ave., Albany strose.edu Thursday, April 11: Sidney and Beatrice Albert Interfaith Lectureship. 7:30 p.m. Daisy Kahn from the American Society of Muslim Advancement will present the annual lecture.
Bulmer Telecommunications Center Auditorium
Events and Athletics Center 420 Western Ave., Albany Sunday, April 7: Frequency North: Pitchapalooza! 2 p.m. Local authors will have a chance to land a book deal when Pitchapalooza! returns to The College of Saint Rose. Twenty writers will be selected at random to pitch their book ideas. Each will have one minute to make the best pitch possible to Arielle Eckstut and David Henry Sterry, authors and Pitchapalooza creators, along with guest judges. The judges will pick a winner, who
19th-century engineer who created Manhattan’s street grid (and who was born and raised in Albany). Sponsored by the New York State Writers Institute, Friends of the NYS Library and N.Y. Council for the Humanities.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Biotech Auditorium 110 Eighth St., Troy rpi.edu Wednesday, April 17: Marilynne Robinson, Pulitzer Prize-winning Novelist. 8 p.m. Marilynne Robinson, celebrated fiction writer who received the Pulitzer for Gilead (2004), is the author most recently of When I Was a Child I Read Books (2012), reflections on disquieting cultural trends. Booklist called it, “intellectually sophisticated, beautifully reasoned with gravitas and grace.” Robinson’s first novel, Housekeeping, was named one
of the 100 best novels (19232005) by Time magazine.
University at Albany Campus Center/ Assembly Hall
1400 Washington Ave., Albany Friday, April 19: Manil Suri, fiction writer and mathematician. 8 p.m. Suri, Indian-American novelist, is the author of The City of Devi (2013), set in the author’s native Mumbai after it has been abandoned under threat of nuclear attack. Suri’s The Death of Vishnu (2001), received the Barnes & Noble Discover Award. Mathematics professor at U Maryland, Suri specializes in partial differential equations. Friday, May 3: Russell Shorto. 3:15 p.m. Journalist and historian Russell Shorto is renowned for his bestselling history of life in Dutch colonial New York, He presents the Fossieck Lecture. Monday, May 6: K. Eric Drexler, Founding Father of Nanotechnology. 8 p.m. The
world’s first molecular engineer, established principles of molecular design with his 1981 paper “Molecular engineering.” In 1986, he published the extremely influential book, Engines of Creation. His new book, his first in 20 years, is Radical Abundance (2013).
Campus Center/Ballroom Thursday, April 25: Chris Bohjalian. 8 p.m. Bohjalian is the author of 15 novels, most recently of the N.Y. Times bestseller, The Sandcastle Girls (2012), an epic tale of the Armenian Genocide that mines Bohjalian’s own Armenian heritage (his grandparents survived the tragedy).
Page Hall, downtown campus 135 Western Ave., Albany Tuesday, April 30: Gail Collins, New York Times Columnist. 8 p.m. One of the most recognizable names in American journalism, Collins served as the first female editor of the New York Times Editorial Page (2001-7)
AN WE TALK HERE? Joan Rivers, comedy legend, performs at the The Colonial Theatre C in Pittsfield on May 10. — PHOTO COURTESY JOAN RIVERS
80 Vandenburgh Ave., Troy hvcc.edu (518) 629-7180 Friday, April 12: An Afternoon with Author Anne Lamott. 11 a.m. The best-selling author most recently published Help,Thanks,Wow: The Three Essential Prayers.
New York State Museum Huxley Theater, Cultural Education Center 222 Madison Ave., Albany (518) 442-5620 Thursday, April 11: Marguerite Holloway. 8 p.m. Holloway, science journalist, is the author of The Measure of Manhattan, a biography of John Randel, Jr., the eccentric
calendar spring 2013 and has contributed an influential biweekly column to the Times Op-Ed page for most of the past decade.
Performing Arts Center 1400 Washington Ave., Albany (518) 442-3997 Monday, April 8: When the Extraordinary Became Ordinary: Jewish Life in Nazi Germany. 7 p.m. The lecture will chronicle the everyday tyranny Jews in Germany experienced and how they reacted. Using a wealth of primary sources, particularly memoirs, diaries, and letters, Prof. Marion Kaplan discusses how the victims, especially women and families, tried to cope with Nazism and how it felt as the noose tightened around Jewish life. Marion Kaplan is the Skirball Professor of Modern Jewish History at New York University.
Museums Albany Institute of History & Art 125 Washington Ave,, Albany albanyinstitute.org (518) 463-4478 Through Sunday, Sept. 29: Ancient Egypt: The Albany Mummies. Guests of all ages are awed by this ongoing exhibition that features the Albany Institute’s mummies alongside loaned objects from other major museums. Three key concepts, “The Nile,” “Daily Life,” and “The Afterlife,” are explored through objects, text, and hands-on activities to give an overview of ancient Egypt. Through Sunday, April 14: The First Presbyterian Church of Albany: 250 Years of Community and Conscience. An exhibition commemorates the 250th anniversary of the First Presbyterian Church of Albany, including two gifts in the Entry Way Gallery: a rare 1790 Church Penny, used by congregants as currency in the Sunday collection plate; and a hand-written subscription document signed by Alexander Hamilton, Richard Varick, and John Jay to help fund the construction of the second edifice built in 1795 on the corner of Beaver & Pearl streets. Through Sunday, Aug. 18: The Making of the Hudson River School: More Than the Eye Beholds. More than 150 works from private collections
and the museum’s holdings by well-known artists such as Thomas Cole, Frederic Edwin Church, Asher B. Durand and William Hart, who turned to the American Landscape into a source of inspiration and subject matter. Paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, published books and handwritten letters help the viewer understand the formation of the Hudson River School. Through Sunday, June 30: Robert Hewson Pruyn: An Albanian in Japan. Highlights from the Albany Institute’s collection of private papers from Pruyn (1815-1882), who was appointed the second U.S. Minister to Japan by President Lincoln, referred by Secretary of State and N.Y. Governor Seward. The exhibition includes some of the earliest photographic views of Tokyo; diplomatic ephemera; accounts and maps of the Battle of Shimonoseki; pressed flowers; invitations; Pruyns personal expense record; as well as documents in pre-Meiji Japanese. Through Saturday, June 15: The Legacy of Currier and Ives: Shaping the American Spirit. Pays tribute to the popular nineteenth-century printmakers Nathaniel Currier and James Merritt Ives and their role in establishing printmaking as a form of media that was inexpensive and eagerly sought out by people from every kind of household. From 1834-1907, Currier and Ives gave testimony to national art trends, historical events and technological progress through their popular prints, which hung in homes across America.
Berkshire Museum 39 South St., Pittsfield, Mass. berkshiremuseum.org (413) 443-7171 Through Sunday, June 2: Ansel Adams: Masterworks. Exhibition of 47 photographs by Ansel Adams (1902-1984), selected by Adams himself to represent the best of his life’s work; includes iconic landscapes and architectural studies. Through Sunday, May 12: Bats: Creatures of the Night. Forget the myths and learn the truth about bats: they are gentle, beneficial animals that play an important role in our planet’s ecology.
EUGENE LUDINS: AN AMERICAN FANTASIST is on view at the New York State Museum through May 12. (Pictured here is “Meadow,” 1960s, oil on canvas.) — PHOTO COURTESY OF THE NEW YORK STATE MUSEUM
Irish American Heritage Museum 370 Broadway, Albany irishamericanheritagemuseum.org (518) 427-1916 Through Sunday, April 28: Irish and the Erie Canal. The exhibit expands the common notion that the Irish were limited to the construction of the canal, revealing the additional historical contributions of the Irish to planning, designing, engineering, and funding the famed achievement that transformed New York City and America into a world economic power, linking the Great Lakes and the interior of the young nation to the Atlantic Ocean.
New York State Museum 264 Madison Ave,, Albany nysm.nysed.gov (518) 474-5877 Through Sunday, Sept. 22: I Shall Think of You Often: The Civil War Story of Doctor and Mary Tarbell. Doctor and Mary Tarbell were typical of many New York
couples who endured the hardships of the Civil War. This small exhibition, originally seen at the Tompkins County History Center, tells the story of the Tarbells’ courtship, marriage, and service during the war. Through Sunday, May 12: An Irrepressible Conflict: The Empire State in the Civil War. New York State’s pivotal role in the Civil War. Through Sunday, May 19: Gordon Parks: 100 Moments. The exhibit celebrates a photographer who transformed the visual story of America with his ever-questioning lens, highlighting — in particular — the significance of Parks’ photographs from the early 1940s. 100 Moments focuses on Parks’s photographic practice of documenting African-Americans in Harlem and Washington, D.C. during a pivotal time in U.S. history. Through Thursday, April 11: CANstruction, Can You Imagine. The third annual exhibition teams of architects, engineers, contractors and students come
together to create whimsical and innovative structures using only canned goods. Through Sunday, May 12: Eugene Ludins: An American Fantasist. This retrospective exhibition spans the 70-year career of artist Eugene Ludins, beginning with his residency at the Maverick colony in Woodstock, N.Y., in 1929. Ludins was a leading member of the Hudson Valley arts community, Ulster County director of the Federal Arts Program of the Works Progress Administration (WPA), and an avid baseball player. Through Sunday, Sept. 22: Russel Wright: The Nature of Design. The exhibit explores the work and philosophy of renowned industrial designer Russel Wright, whose former home in the Hudson Valley — Manitoga — is now a national historic landmark. The exhibition focuses on one of Wright’s most pervasive preoccupations, which also has much relevance today: the
relationship of humankind with the natural world.
Pruyn House 207 Old Niskayuna Road, Latham colonie.org/pruyn (518) 783-1435 Through Monday, April 29: Colonie Art League Exhibit. A juried show featuring selected paintings by members of the League. Most paintings are for sale.
Rensselaer County Historical Society 57 Second St., Troy rchsonline.org (518) 272-7232 Through July 27: Troy is My Home Town: The Life and Times of Maureen Stapleton. The exhibit explores the life and career of Troy native and Oscar-winning actress Maureen Stapleton.
continued on page 15
Bennington Potters invites slow shopping. Come for the experience. Spend time. Not money. We want you to know our customers are always welcome to visit and NOT BUY — here’s what’s for free.
A GOOD TIME IN OUR HOME STORE Get inspiration and ideas for your home. Our welcoming staff supports your creativity with wonderful objects and lots of space to play, no purchase necessary.
A GOOD TIME IN OUR POTTERY Meet passionate potters delighted to talk and to show you how we make our pottery. Have fun watching someone’s dishes being made in one of America’s oldest continually operating potteries, no purchase necessary.
A GOOD TIME IN OUR TOWN At our County Street destination home store pick up details for the free events at Bennington College, Southern Vermont College — dance — theater — music — poetry — talks — AND Get coupons for 50% off admission to Bennington Museum Bennington Center for the Arts Oldcastle Theatre Company Vermont Arts Exchange Basement Music, offer expires 5.15.13, no purchase necessary.
A MINI VACATION IN VERMONT making pottery locally in Bennington Vermont for 64 years
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Come Explore Bennington Vermont this Spring! Only 30 miles from the bottom of Hoosick Street in Troy to the center of Bennington.
Rich in four-season outdoor recreation, Vermont’s history and heritage, the arts, and the pleasures of the good life, The Shires is the perfect destination for a day away or longer. A 'string' of quintessential Vermont towns and villages connected by the scenic Shires of Vermont Byway offers a blend of old and new, including museums, attractions, art and antique galleries, covered bridges, historic walking tours, specialty stores and boutiques, along with quality restaurants and cafés.
Vermont Route 9, Bennington, VT
Downtown Bennington and Bennington
APRIL 1-5 Career Week
Plant tours, seminars and activities.
APRIL 4 Robert Frost Poetry 7 – 9 pm 1 World Conservation Center
APRIL 6 Community Day APRIL 13 Musician Daisy Castro
Vt Arts Exchange 802-442-5549
APRIL 27 Aurora Dance Party Bennington Airport $15
APRIL 20 Musicians Mike & Ruthy
Vt Arts Exchange 802-442-5549
MAY 3 David Wax Museum
Vt. Art Exchange 802-442-5549
MAY 4 & 5 Dragon Road Race & Bicy Bicycle Circuit through Bennington,
Shaftsbury Arlington, Arlington Manchester Manches Shaftsbury, & Dorset
MAY 18 Miss Tess & the Talkbacks Vt. Art Exchange 802-442-5549
MAY 19 The Shires Marathon – 27 Mile Run
MAY 31 - JUNE 2 Motorcycle Rally/Triumph Bash JUNE 8 Funk in the Trunk performs
March 14 to May 27
Ansoninger 1910 (detail); artist, Steve Conant
FINE ART GALLERIES PERFORMANCES COVERED BRIDGE MUSEUM
Victorian Extreme American Fancywork and Steampunk, 1850 to Now
Brew and Food Pairing
International and Domestic Craft Brews, Ciders and Meads plus Delectable Dishes from the Region May 17, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. 75 Main Street • Bennington,VT 05201 • www.BenningtonMuseum.org
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JULY 18 Midnight Madness
Full marathon Manchester to Bennington
of 32 life size mountain lion statues & huge party/Kick off of Summer Art Festival May – Oct
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continued from page 12
PULITZER PRIZE-WINNING NOVELIST Marilynne Robinson gives a reading at RPI on April 17. — PHOTO BY KELLY RUTH WINTER
The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute 225 South St., Williamstown, Mass. clarkart.edu (413) 458-2303 Through April 21: Exposition Universelle. Guests will be transported to turn-of-the-century Paris during the World’s Fair.
Galleries The Arts Center of the Capital Region 265 River St., Troy artscenteronline.org (518) 273-0552 Through Sun, Apr 21: forceperunit: Corvus Ilium. Though the crows are an ever-present yet seemingly mundane part of Troy life, they help form our daily experience. As residents, we
continue to acknowledge the crows, talk about the crows, watch the crows, listen to the crows, complain about the crows, admire the crows. And we should. This participatory installation allows the viewers to contemplate the existence of these moments, however inferior they may seem.
EMPAC 110 Eighth St, Troy empac.rpi.edu (518) 276-3921 Saturday, April 13: Robert Henke: Fragile Territories. An installation using a state-ofthe-art laser system to create floating patterns of volatile luminosity.
Golden (assemblage); Gammy Miller 9mixed media); Rebecca Mushtare (mixed media/installation). Opening Reception: Friday, April 12th 5-7 pm Through Friday, June 28: LARAC Members Show. Featuring the eclectic artwork of LARAC members (anyone can join). Opening Reception: Friday, May 24th 5-7 pm
The Opalka Gallery at The Sage Colleges 140 New Scotland Ave., Albany (518) 443-1609 Through Thursday, April 18: Stories and Journeys: The Art of Faith Ringgold and Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson.
Lower Adirondack Regional Arts Council 7 Lapham Place, Glens Falls (518) 798-1144 Through Friday, May 10: Bits and Pieces. Featured Artists: Carey Conaway (mixed media); Diane
Listings compiled by the News & Information Services Department staff: Shannon Fromma, CJ Lais, Adrienne Freeman, Jennifer Patterson, Azra Haqqie and Bebe Nyquist. Calendars are compiled about six weeks before delivery, which is the first Sunday of April, June, September and December. To view a complete list of events, or to submit a listing, go to events.timesunion.com. For more information, call 454-5420.
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spring’s best five five places to celebrate spring’s arrival
— PHOTO BY MICHAEL P. FARRELL/TIMES UNION ARCHIVES
compiled by brianna snyder and brittany lenotti
Dutch Apple Cruises
Want to celebrate spring? What better way than on the water and a tour on the scenic, historic Hudson River. Built in 1986 from pieces of former Hudson River dayliners, the Dutch Apple II is an homage to the olden days when passengers took ferries from Albany to New York City on the Hudson. Thanks to in-deck air conditioning or heating, these ships run from early spring into late fall. There’s also a full cash bar and refreshments.
OPEN: Cruises available daily, April - October ADMISSION: Sightseeing Cruise, $17.50 per person; prices vary for private charter CONTACT: (518) 463-0220 or dutchapplecruises.com
Altamont Vineyard & Winery
3001 Furbeck Rd, Altamont, N.Y. Want to do a little wine tasting and can’t afford a trip to Napa Valley? Altamont Vineyard & Winery is just a half hour from Albany. Sprawling over 15 acres, this estate is fashioned after small family wineries in Italy with a series of small utilitarian buildings. With a climate and soil similar to the wine regions of Northern France and Germany, the Altamont Vineyard & Winery uses a combination of Old World technique and innovation. The grounds not only have a vineyard but also walking paths and a pond — perfect for a picnic on a warm spring day. Visit the tasting room on Saturdays and Sundays AprilOPEN: Saturday-Sunday May for a taste the current wine and receive tasting room hours a complimentary wine glass. Starting in May, Noon - 5 p.m.; vineyard take a walking tour of the vineyard and get tours by appointment a behind-the-scenes look at wine production ADMISSION: Free followed by a sampling in the tasting room. CONTACT: (518) 355-8100 Altamont Vineyard & Winery is also available or altamontwinery.com for a wedding, party or conference rental. — PHOTO BY PAUL BUCKOWSKI/TIMES UNION ARCHIVES
Erastus Corning Tower observation deck
Want to get a view of the Capital Region from way up high? The Erastus Corning Tower’s 42nd floor is a dizzyingly-high perch equipped with viewing scopes, maps and factoids about the region’s complex history. If you grew up here, you probably know already that this tower in the center of OPEN: Monday through the Empire State Plaza is named for ErasFriday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. tus Corning II, a former Albany mayor ADMISSION: Free who helped create this plaza. The CornCONTACT: (518) 474-2418 or ogs. ing Tower is the tallest building in the ny.gov/esp/CT/Tours/OBdeck.asp state outside of New York City.
— PHOTO BY PAUL BUCKOWSKI/TIMES UNION ARCHIVES
OPEN: May 1- Nov. 1, It’s believed that the word Cohoes 7 a.m. to dusk comes from the Native American word ADMISSION: Free Coho meaning “falling or shipwrecked CONTACT: canoe.” This meaning makes sense when you take friendsofcohoesfalls.org a visit to Cohoes Falls. Located just minutes from 787 and Route 9, the Cohoes Falls are the biggest falls east of Niagara. Access is through Falls View Park. The park is four-acres and offers a wide range of recreational and historical features. A 192-foot-long pedestrian bridge spans the School Street power canal from North Mohawk Street to the primary overlook area. Falls View Park also has access to nearby hiking trails. The lower level deck offers a secondary view and fishing platforms. Visitors can also access the riverbed via a natural trail at the base of the falls, open Saturdays and Sundays (weather permitting).
Adirondack Balloon flights
Want to enjoy breathtaking aerial views of the Adirondacks/Lake George/Saratoga Springs region of New York and the Green Mountains of Vermont? Consider a hot air balloon ride. With over 30 years of experience and 3,000 flights, pilot Phil Jackson of Adirondack Balloon Flights will guide you on an hour-long journey spanning over 10 miles. The rides are at sunrise or dusk and can be scheduled for as many as four guests; romantic private flight for two are popular too. In-flight service provides a champagne toast and photographs of your adventure. OPEN: Flights available daily April through October, Pickup and drop-off just after sunrise and one hour before sunset is located at Exit 19 of ADMISSION: Private flight for two, $700.00; shared I-84 in Queensbury, less space and private group flight, $270.00 per person than 1 hour north of CONTACT: 518-793-6342 or adkballoonflights.com Albany.
— PHOTO BY PHILIP KAMRASS/TIMES UNION ARCHIVES
— PHOTO COURTESY ADIRONDACK BALLOON FLIGHTS
— PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY EMILY JAHN
Wait a Minute!
Spring in the
Berkshires WELCOME TO THE...
Hudson Berkshire Beverage Trail celebrating the one-minute film festival at mass moca
Pasta & Sauced ~ “The Great Mac Attack” ack” Saturday April 20th 11am - 5pm “Sip & Sample” Award-Winning Wines, Handcrafted Ales & Artisanal Spirits. Served with complimentary pasta pairings.
by john adamian » photos courtesy mass moca
revity is good. Just about every art form has some format that showcases the values and challenges of concision and compression, the virtues of going small or short. For every heroic epic, every extended symphony, every tome-like novel or every giant canvas, there’s the haiku, the three-minute pop song, the short story, the thumb-nail sketch. As anyone who’s ever tried to condense and distill a 35-minute draft of a speech down to the allotted 10-minute limit can tell you: Saying a lot in a little time is a major challenge. But within this extreme time constraint sometimes the best, clearest expression gets made. How many bloated two-hours-plus Hollywood fantasy sagas would have benefited from trimming off 10 or 15 minutes of excess battles or slow character exposition? If directors can’t bear to shave off a few scenes from their feature-length work, imagine the challenge of creating a film that somehow says what it needs to say in 60 seconds or less. That’s shorter than the duration of many stop lights. But that was the challenge set for filmmakers at the One-Minute Film Festival, an informal series of get-togethers that happened every summer in a barn at the New York property of artists Jason Simon and Moryra Davey, for 10 years from 2003 to 2012. The festival ran its course and the artists who organized it decided to move on to other projects, but as a way of celebrating what happened there, MASS MoCa has a assembled an exhibit commemorating the films that were shown there. The exhibit includes around 600 one-minute films, just about all of the films that were shown over the festival’s 10-year history. MASS MoCA will have six screening areas corresponding chronologically with the progression of the festivals. In addition, the artists who made the films were asked to create movie posters for their films; 30 or 40 posters will be on display, as well as a series of short 150-word “testimonials” from the filmmakers. Making it snappy appears to be the name of the game. Unlike other one-minute film festivals around the world, the festivals that Davey and Simon hosted were uncurated. Anyone who showed up with a film could participate. Some were first- time filmmakers, some were pros. Some threw something together the day before the event perhaps, and others labored long and hard on their films. The gatherings started as informal get-togethers. And things took off from there. MASS MoCa curator Denise Markonish has organized the exhibit celebrating those casual mini-film parties. And she remembers the first one. continued on page 21
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continued from page 19 “It was definitely about this spontaneous act of creativity,” she says. “It was also about this social gathering.” The festivals would start with a potluck dinner and generally end with a dance party in the barn. “It was word of mouth. It started with a group of friends and it just snowballed.” About 60 or so films were shown each year. That’s about one hour’s worth of bite-size movies in total annually. Every two years Simon would assemble a compilation video of all the films from the previous two years. As it happened, the 10 years that the festival was active overlapped with a change-filled period in American politics and popular culture. “I think five years ago you couldn’t have done this kind of show,” says Markonish. “Now — with things like Twitter and things like YouTube, and a constant presence of short video — short thinking in many ways is very prevalent.” In many ways, the times caught up with bite-size anyone-can-do-it ethos of the festival. Twitter emerged to enshrine the ultra-distilled pithy quip, and the dominant web videos of the age now prize brevity, seeking eyeballs in an era of nano-second attention spans. “When this festival started, it was before YouTube,” says Markonish. “It was before video was as ubiquitous as it is in museums and galleries.”
“Five years ago you couldn’t have done this kind of show.” For the generation that came of age with the web and its wide-open easyentry nature, creative endeavors that involve the gatekeepers of taste and style are viewed with suspicion. And the festival’s run spanned the transition from the Bush years to the Obama years — two very different political realities. Perhaps the most anomalous thing about the festival is that there was no website, no real online presence. You may find yourself wondering what a one-minute film can hope to achieve. And it’s a fair question. Narrative scope and character development probably aren’t the strong points of these brief bursts of image and sound. But there’s plenty of texture and color and absurdity packed into those 60 seconds. Some of the films are disjointed rapid-fire pastiches, with snippets of found video, bits of grainy home-movie-style moments, flashes of absurdity. Others go more atmospheric and post-modern — like a pixelated close-up of what appears to be an appropriated David Bowie concert film, minus the music. Still others adopt a more highly focused approach, functioning like a distilled Wikipedia entry on the subject of the history of striped clothing in the Middle Ages, for instance. Others are like test-run artsy indie-rock music videos, like one that shows a dizzying sequence of still images of different forks, set to the music of Bon Iver. There are flashes of ironic humor, too, like one film set to the song “Take My Breath Away” featuring a slow pan of a country landscape revealing with a glimpse of a man lifting barbells in the distance. “If you don’t like the one you’re watching,” says Markonish, “all you have to do is wait a minute.” E
ONE MINUTE FILM FESTIVAL: 10 YEARS opens March 23 at MASS MoCA, 1040 MASS MoCA Way, North Adams, Mass. Call (413) 662-2111 or visit massmoca.org.
A STILL from McElheney & Simon’s one-minute movie.
Turn of the Cards annie haslam and renaissance return with a new album
by michael hamad » photos by richard barnes
ast November, news of the death of Michael Dunford, guitarist/composer for the seminal British progressive folk-rock group Renaissance, sent shock waves through the prog-rock community on both sides of the Atlantic. But perhaps nobody in the music business felt the ripples as strongly as singer Annie Haslam, Dunford’s longtime bandmate. “His wife, Claire, called me on the 19th of November, probably around 6 p.m.,” Haslam says in a recent phone interview. “Those things stay in your mind. I ran to the machine — it was weird that it was her. She just said, ‘Mike’s had a stroke, and he’s only got a few hours to live.’ That was the extent. … It just didn’t sink in.” It’s now up to Haslam to lead Renaissance through, well, a renaissance. Before Dunford’s death, he and Haslam recorded a new album, which will be released
in March. But several dates from an abandoned fall tour — postponed when Haslam suffered an injury — have to be made up before the band can move on, for many reasons, including financial ones. “It was bad enough that we’d lost half the tour,” Haslam says, “but the last show — the one that would have helped monetarily to catch up a little bit, because we’d lost so much — was cancelled because of the hurricane [Sandy]. It was just one thing after another.” The new spring tour includes a show at The Egg in Albany on April 17, which makes up for an Oct. 14 show that was cancelled. The band will make good on a promise to play two mid-’70s fan-favorite albums — Turn of the Cards (1974) and Scheherazade and Other Stories (1975) — composed almost entirely by Dunford and lyricist Betty Thatcher, who passed away in 2011. For the uninitiated, Renais-
»R ENAISSANCE PERFORMS at the Egg April 17, 7:30 p.m. For tickets, go to theegg.org.
sance’s classically influenced sound veers from the guitar-heavy textures of most other mid-’70s prog-rock bands toward arpeggiated piano passages, acoustic guitars and especially Haslam’s sublime, folk-inspired vocals. It’s also highly conceptual; the final track on Scheherazade — the nearly 25-minute long suite “Song of Scheherazade” — is an epic tone poem worthy of Carnegie Hall, where the band recorded a double-live album in the summer of 1975 (it was released in 1976). With the new album in place and tour dates looming, Haslam was faced with the daunting task of replacing Dunford. “I called a lot of people I knew in the business,” Haslam says, “because they all knew the kind of music and personality we were looking for. But Mickey was an English gentleman onstage, so it was going to be hard to find an English gentleman over here [in the U.S.]. There might have been the possibility of finding someone in England, but the band’s all over here.” Based on friend Larry Fast’s recommendation, Haslam auditioned New Jersey-based prog-rock veteran Ryche Chlanda, who opened for Renaissance in the early ’70s with his band Fireballet. He got the job. “He has a really nice personality, he looks really nice, and he just has a nice way about him,” Haslam says. “He’s an excellent guitar player, and his voice is great. He blends in wonderfully. Nice personality, which is such a huge part of being in a band, everybody getting on.” Of course, Chlanda isn’t replacing Dunford, Haslam says. “You can never replace somebody like that. That word doesn’t work for me. But when Ryche walked in, we just knew it would work, so that was good.”
orty-two years ago, it was Haslam’s turn to audition for Renaissance. “I joined in 1971, New Year’s Day, and in 1975 we were doing Carnegie Hall,” she remembers. “That was pretty quick, wasn’t it? … [For the audition] I was dressed for the part, you know, the ’60s going into the ’70s. My hair was parted in the middle. It was long. I bought the album [Renaissance] and I learned it back to front when I learned who the audition was for. And they asked me to sing a song called ‘Island,’ which I loved.” Haslam’s voice was exactly what Dunford and the band were looking for, and it’s been the center of the Renaissance sound ever since. “That was the only one they asked me to sing,” Haslam says. “[Guitarist and former Yardbird] Keith Relf was there, [drummer] Jim McCarty, I think [keyboardist] John Tout was there, Michael [Dunford] with his velvet pants and his knee-length boots. And he looked gorgeous, they all did. We all did, then! They said they’d call me the next day. That was in Weybridge, in Somerset, in a little church hall, I think. I went home and I was really excited. I got the call the next day and got the job. Within three weeks, we were in Germany.”
The music business has changed. But a successful Kickstarter campaign, which raised twice as much as the band needed to record an album, is a testament to how much Renaissance fans want to hear some new music, even if Haslam and the band won’t be playing the bulk of it until the fall. “The timing is so messed up because of all the different things that happened,” Haslam says. “There’s nothing we can do about that. We have to put it out now. The Kickstarter people must have it now; we can’t put it off any longer. It’s an odd way of doing it, but when things happen like that, you have no choice.” There’s no doubt Haslam is still deeply affected by Dunford’s passing. “It was such a huge shock,” Haslam says. “He seemed to be pretty fit. … He’s got two boys, 10 and 13, and a wife. It’s just a huge shock for many of us in the circle and everything, but also the fans. Nobody could believe it. He was only 68. You just don’t know. I think with a stroke, it’s something that’s coming no matter what. It’s one of those things. … It attacks when it’s going to attack. But we did get to finish the album, which is fantastic. That’s going to be coming out in the next few weeks. It’s great that it’s coming out, and obviously it’s a tribute to him now.” E
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Artist’s Curse the complicated nature of painter mark rothko
by brianna snyder » photo courtesy capital repertory theatre
or many of us, art often confounds. Confrontational, abstract art can be offputting in undefinable ways. Sprawling, structural art can be alienating or confusing, while art film can be disorienting. Scholars and the enlightened few experience various artworks organically — they respond to them without needing context or explanation. The rest of us? We do better with a backstory. The artist Mark Rothko is an example of a painter whose complex work becomes richer (for some) with a little help. A Latvian-Jewish American immigrant, Rothko became an artist around the time of the Great Depression. His work is labeled Abstract Expressionist, though he rejected the term. How he came to define his work and his art is the basis for the play Red, which runs at Capital Repertory Theatre April 23 through May 19. Red centers on Rothko’s career at the time he was commissioned to provide murals for the then-new Four Seasons restaurant in 1958. A two-man show, the play focuses on the mentor-mentee relationship between Rothko (played by Kevin McGuire) and a fictional assistant named Ken. Ken rebels against some of Rothko’s older-generation values, challenging Rothko to think harder about the work he’s doing and its purpose. “It’s one of those things where the student becomes as powerful as the teacher,” says Maggie Mancinelli-Cahill, producing artistic director of the Capital Repertory Theatre and director of Red. “For any of us who have done mentorships, it’s something you really want. You want the people you mentor to be better than you ultimately, but when it happens it’s a complicated moment. … I love plays that actually show us how people do things.” In the play, the artist and apprentice work together on a painting — Mancinelli-Cahill says the two start each performance with a blank canvas and paint it red over the course of the five-scene play. (Rothko was famous for his red and black paintings.) “They paint right on stage,” Mancinelli-Cahill says. “They paint the undercoat-
ing of a Rothko painting » RED plays April 23-May 19 at Capital Repertory so the two actors who you Theatre, 111 North Pearl St., Albany. Call (518) cast have to learn how to 445-SHOW or visit capitalrep.org. do this undercoating that Rothko was very famous for doing. Then they do that together. … It’s very athletic, very hard and they do it right on stage so they bring a huge canvas out and this classical music plays and you have to choreograph this whole moment. And you have to do it every night.”
othko’s goal in the Four Seasons project was to discomfit and disorient the upper-class diners the Four Seasons would serve. (He told Harper’s magazine that he intended to paint “something that will ruin the appetite of every son of a bitch who ever eats in that room. If the restaurant would refuse to put up my murals, that would be the ultimate compliment. But they won’t. People can stand anything these days.”) After traveling to Europe and studying the classical art there, Rothko returned to the States and backed out of the project and returned the commission. Why he suddenly backed out remains a mystery — he knew before he left for Europe exactly what the Four Seasons represented and what he intended to do. Red attempts to parse that complicated moment in Rothko’s career. The play, written by the screenwriter John Logan (who also wrote Hugo and Gladiator), examines universal themes: Rothko’s existential and philosophical hang-ups regarding his work could be stand-ins for the struggles many of us face when really thinking honestly about what’s important to us and what we believe. “It’s a play about art and making it and the passion behind it,” MancinelliCahill says. “And I think anybody who sees it will be able to fill in the blank on whatever that passion is for them.” E
Muckety Muck hitting the trails in mud season
by gillian scott » photo courtesy adirondack mountain club
WALK THIS WAY: Spring hiking means watching where you step.
Clean It Up! We all know to throw dirty hiking clothes in the washer, but muddy boots need a cleanup, too. Nick Gulli, a buyer at the Mountaineer in Keene Valley, says the dirt in mud can act as an abrasive, cutting up and breaking down the leather and fabric in hiking boots. He recommends removing the dirt with a stiff brush and says boots should always be clean before a sealant is applied. Virginia Boyle Traver of Albany waits until the mud has dried on her boots, and then removes
the worst of it with a dull knife before using a stiff kitchen brush to clean off the rest. Another hiking friend of ours, whose wife referred to him as “obsessive compulsive,” prefers to carry a brush in the car and remove mud while it’s still wet. Once at home, he removes the rest of the muck and then applies regular shoe polish and buffs their all-leather boots to a high shine. He swears the polish maintains the waterproofing of the boots as well as any sealant, and they always look like new.
Footprint illustration: ©iStockphoto.com/Tomas Jasinskis.
hen Albany resident Virginia Boyle Traver slipped off a log while hiking into the Santanoni mountain range several years ago, she found herself up to her elbows and knees in muck, a full pack weighing her down. With her daughter’s help, she freed her arms and one leg, but the other leg remained firmly stuck. It wasn’t until another hiker came along that they were able to pull her leg out. “I think my boot would still be there if she hadn’t come along,” Traver says. Welcome to Adirondack mud. It’s boot-sucking, clothes-ruining and sometimes deceptively benign looking (hint: that solid-looking patch of ground may not be so solid). One minute you’re hopping from rock to rock or balancing on a log bridge. The next minute you’ve got wet dirt oozing into the top of your boot. During “mud season,” when mud is at its worst, the state even asks hikers to stay off some trails. Though the season has no official start and end dates, in the Adirondack region it runs from approximately April 1 to May 15. That’s when snow in the mountains begins to melt and the water runs downhill, saturating poorly-drained soil and making it vulnerable to erosion. Lori Severino, press officer for the Department of Environmental Conservation, says the agency issues a voluntary closure of trails every year, asking hikers to stay away from the Eastern High Peaks region to protect plants and reduce erosion. This usually occurs in the fall when frost sets in, and in the spring, when frost begins to melt and the ground gets soft. If voluntary closures don’t work, mandatory restrictions may be put in place.
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EXPLORE! Summit stewards have been guarding the High Peaks region’s most vulnerable peaks for more than 20 years, educating hikers about the delicate alpine environments. The Summit Steward program is run jointly by the Adirondack Mountain Club, the Nature Conservancy and the state Department of Environmental Conservation. Julia Goren, Summit Steward coordinator, says people from areas to the south, such as the Capital Region, need to remember that the High Peaks lag weeks behind the rest of the state seasonally. So while May brings warm temperatures and drier trails to the Albany area, cold mountain summits may still have snow in June. And melting snow means mud. Goren says the DEC trail restriction is important because plants on alpine summits have a very short growing season — just about two weeks. “That two-week window is an incredibly important window of time for these plants,” Goren says. “They’re putting out all of their energy. They’re also incredibly fragile because new growth is fragile.” The alpine plants have a variety of adaptations that allow them to survive and even thrive in a harsh environment that includes high winds and temperature extremes, but Goren says it’s not easy. “It’s a really stressful environment for the plants. And they can handle that just fine, but what they can’t handle is that stress and then the additional stress of having somebody step on them.” But during mud season, there’s more likely to be snow and ice and, yes, mud on summits, and hikers may try to avoid the hazards by walking off the trail, Goren says, leading them to step on the plants instead. While a typical suburban lawn can get stepped on up to 500 times before damage becomes visible, delicate alpine plants can only get stepped on about five times before they suffer significant damage, Goren says. “Even if you only step on that plant one time, you have no idea what the 59 people who were there before you or the 100 people who are coming after you did. The cumulative impact is really magnified because it‚s a really small area.” To protect the plants, the stewards are stationed on the busy summits of Marcy and Algonquin seven days a week from Memorial Day through Labor Day, and provide weekend coverage before that and through Columbus Day. Other peaks, including Cascade, Wright, Colden and Skylight, also have stewards based on the number of visitors they receive and the size of the alpine zones. continued on page 29
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hough alpine summits are the most vulnerable areas, hikers must make an effort to avoid the mud causes problems at lower elevations as well. One of the main tenets of the Leave No Trace movement is to travel on durable surfaces such as rocks when possible. When that’s not an option, hikers should walk in the middle of the trail, even when it’s wet or muddy. “People see the mud and they don’t want to walk through the mud so they walk around and then you wind up with trail widening,” Goren says. “We’re seeing a lot of erosion happening, especially on the steep slopes in any kind of a muddy patch. It’s a vicious cycle. Once those areas get muddy, people start walking around it and it keeps getting worse and worse.” Even outside of mud season, hiking is a dirty business in the Adirondacks, where trails are often wetter than in surrounding states. Goren says hikers who usually visit Vermont or New Hampshire might be shocked by how wet and
hike here The Adirondack Mountain Club provided this list of suggested alternate trails for spring hikes: High Peaks Region • • • •
Footprint illustration: ©iStockphoto.com/Tomas Jasinskis.
• • • • • • • • • •
Cascade Mountain Big Slide Mountain The Brothers Porter Mountain from Cascade; stay off other approaches The Crows Hurricane Mountain from Route 9N Haystack Mountain (next to McKenzie, not the Haystack next to Marcy) McKenzie Mountain Giant Ridge Trail Marcy Dam Truck Trail Indian Pass Trail to Rocky Falls Noonmark Mountain Pitchoff Mountain Roostercomb Mountain via Keene Valley
• Little Porter Mountain from the Garden • Bald Peak • Baker Mountain • Scarface Mountain • Northville-Placid Trail from Averyville Road • Owl Head Lookout from Route 9 Outside the High Peaks • • • • • • • • •
Azure Mountain DeBar Mountain Pharaoh Mountain Treadway Mountain Poke-O-Moonshine Mountain Silver Lake Mountain Taylor Pond Trail Blue Mountain Paul Smiths and Newcomb Visitors Interpretive Center Trails • Panther Mountain near Saranac Lake
muddy Adirondack trails can be. Nick Gulli, a buyer for the Mountaineer, an outdoor equipment retailer in Keene Valley, says hikers should be prepared to get dirty, no matter what the season. Even when most of a trail is dry, he says, there are bound to be a few spots where it’s wet and muddy. “You’re always going to get muddy,” Gulli says. In wetter conditions, he recommends hikers wear waterproof boots and kneehigh gaiters (removable waterproof leg coverings). Boots provide higher coverage around the ankles than hiking shoes or sneakers and gaiters help keep pants dry and keep mud from getting into the top of the boot. Trekking poles can help provide balance on slippery surfaces, Gulli says. Better equipment can make you a more environmentally friendly hiker, says Goren. “If you’re wearing a pair of lightweight trail runners, you’re much more likely to walk around [a mud hole] because you don’t want to get your feet wet,” she says. “Wear whatever you wear, but be committed to walking through the mud, right through the center of the trail. That’s ultimately what’s going to help preserve the trails the best.” E
don’t hike here Though many trails in the Adirondack High Peaks are vulnerable to damage during mud season, the following are trails the Adirondack Mountain Club suggest it’s important to avoid: • Algonquin Peak • Phelps Trail above Johns Brook Lodge to Mt. Marcy • Van Hoevenberg Trail from Adirondack Loj to Mt. Marcy • Hurricane Mountain from the northern and eastern approaches • Ampersand Mountain • Mount Colden • Feldspar Brook Trail • Marcy Dam-Avalanche Lake-Lake Colden Trail
• Gothics • Lake Arnold Crossover Trail • Indian Pass Trail beyond Rocky Falls • Range Trail from Johns Brook to Gothics • Mt. Skylight • Wright Peak • All trails in the Dix Mountain Wilderness above Elk Lake and Round Pond • All trails in the Giant Mountain Wilderness above Giant’s Washbowl, the Cobbles and Owl’s Head • Upper elevations of all High Peaks (above 3,000 feet), including trailless peaks
a grand-scale adventure by phil brown photos by carl heilman II
›› THIS STORY originally appeared in Adirondack Explorer magazine. For information, go to adirondackexplorer.org.
om Rosecrans has climbed all over the world, but he’s most at home on Rogers Rock overlooking Lake George. Have you heard of the legend of Rogers Rock? We’re not talking about Major Robert Rogers, the leader of Rogers’ Rangers in the French and Indian War. We’re talking about Tom Rosecrans, the rock climber. Rosecrans, 59, has climbed in the West, the Himalayas and East Africa, among other places, but he’s spent most of his time in the Adirondacks, where he has logged about 70 first ascents, and of all the cliffs in this part of the world, he’s most at home on Rogers Rock. The 650-foot slab rises straight out of Lake George. Legend has it that, in March 1758, Major Rogers was fleeing Indians when he came to the brink of the cliff. He strapped his snowshoes on backward and retraced his steps to make it appear as if he went over the edge. He then scrambled down to the frozen lake by another route. When the Indians saw him far below, they thought he had been aided by the Great Spirit and so ended their pursuit. Rock climbers who scale Rogers Rock enjoy throughout a breathtaking view of Lake George, looking south toward Anthony’s Nose or north toward the foot of the lake. There’s no climb like it in the Adirondack Park.
“Rogers Rock has everything I like about climbing,” says Rosecrans, a retired teacher who owns the Rocksport climbing gym in Glens Falls. “It’s scenic, the routes are generally long, and they don’t scare the bejesus out of me.” Yet most climbers who come to the park speed past Lake George on their way to the High Peaks or Poke-O-Moonshine Mountain, the traditional destinations of cliff hounds. This could change with the publication of Adirondack Rock, a guidebook that is opening people’s eyes to the climbing possibilities in many parts of the park. Rosecrans has seen a steady increase in climbers at Rogers Rock over the years, especially in the summer. The park’s first rock guidebook, A Climber’s Guide to the Adirondacks by Trudy Healy, did not mention Rogers Rock at all. Rosecrans published its successor, Adirondack Rock and Ice Climbs, and included three routes on Rogers Rock. Climbing in the Adirondacks by Don Mellor, first published in 1983, offered 10 routes there. Adirondack Rock, though, represents a quantum leap forward, or upward: It divides Rogers Rock into three cliffs and describes 40 routes in all — four times as many as the previous guidebook. Twenty-one of the routes are on Rogers Slide, which is what most people think of when they think of Rogers Rock.
Rosecrans is largely responsible for this proliferation of possibilities. Adirondack Rock credits him (and his various partners, who include his two grown daughters, Brie and Erin) with the first ascent of 13 of the 21 routes on Rogers Slide. What’s more, he’s knocked off two new routes since the book came out. He now lays claim to the first ascents of twothirds of the routes on the slab. But he was not the first of the first. That honor goes to Demetri Kolokotronis and Bob Perlee, who in 1971 ascended a 490-foot route dubbed Little Finger, following a crack that in places is just wide enough to stick in a finger. The next year the pair climbed a somewhat harder route called Two Bits.
osecrans got into the act in 1973, when he and Tony Goodwin did a 500-foot route they named Tone-Bone Tennys, because Goodwin (whose nickname was Tone-Bone) climbed it in tennis sneakers. Although there are now many ways to scale Rogers Slide, only Little Finger gets five stars in Adirondack Rock, the book’s highest rating for overall climbing enjoyment. One of the charms of Rogers Slide is that it is accessible only by water. We put in canoes at a quiet bay at Rogers Rock State Campground. As we paddle away from shore, we turn to admire the Campground Wall, a 300-foot cliff that also has been seeing more action from rock climbers in recent years. In a few minutes, we round a small point next to tiny Juniper Island and spot two peregrine falcons flying near the shore. One alights in a tree and watches as we pass by, then takes off to join its mate. The falcons nest on cliffs near the campground. Soon we’re passing a part of the Rogers Slide called Jolly Roger Slab, which shoots steeply out of deep water. Some climbers do a short ascent on this slab without ropes; if they slip, they push off and jump into the lake. Not recommended, but it’s done. A few minutes later, we pull our canoes onto a small piece of level land beyond Jolly Roger Slab and poke along the shore to the start of Little Finger. The climb is rated 5.5, which is easy by modern standards. Originally, rock climbing’s scale of difficulty ranges from 5.0 (easy) to 5.9 (very difficult), but it now goes up to 5.15. The first pitch of Little Finger follows a crack 180 feet to a small ledge. Tom goes first, while I let out rope as he ascends. In several places, he inserts cams and other gear in the crack to hold him in case of a fall. When he reaches the ledge, he tethers himself to a fixed bolt and calls for me to follow. As I ascend, Tom pulls in rope, keeping it tight. If I were to slip, the rope would prevent a bad fall. I’m still new to climbing, but I feel no fear. Little Finger strikes me as a step up from slide climbing, something I have done a lot of in the High Peaks. A fall without a rope on Little Finger would be much more dangerous than a fall on a low-angle slide, but with a rope, and with Tom on belay, the climb seems perfectly safe. continued on page 33
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outdoors continued from page 31 Everything is ideal: mild temps, no breeze, no bugs, spectacular vista. Below us, the lake is as calm as can be, a sheet of deep blue. “There aren’t too many bad days out here,” Tom says when I reach the belay station. “They’re all fun in their own way.” Did I mention that we have this place all to ourselves? The only other human in sight is someone in a rowboat, looking up at the nuts on the cliff. In summer, it’s not unusual for a flotilla of boats to anchor near the slab to watch the show. You’re also more likely to run into other climbers in summer. Our photographer and friend Carl Heilman II is below us now. He had been planning to go home early to work on other projects, but he can’t resist the lure of Rogers Rock and decides to join us. So I belay Tom as he traverses across the cliff and tosses a rope down to Carl. The next pitch is shorter, about 130 feet. Again, Tom goes first. When he gets to the next belay station, Carl starts up and I follow, removing the protective gear as I progress. (Carl and I are using separate ropes, both connected to Tom’s belay device.) There is one slightly tricky move to get over a ledge, but otherwise it’s mostly a matter of smearing the soles of our climbing shoes against the rock. The last pitch is about 180 feet. We elect to do what’s called the Direct Finish, which is rated 5.7+. It’s harder than the normal finish, but Tom is confident that we can manage. The rock proves to be a little steeper, but the sticky rubber on
our feet enables us to scramble up without a problem. From the top, we can see much of the north basin of Lake George. After a short rest, we prepare to rappel. After tying the ropes together, Tom threads one through a fixed bolt and then tosses the two rope ends down the cliff. There are now two strands of rope running down the face. Once we feed the ropes through our belay devices and clip in, we’re ready to descend. Tom goes first, walking backward. When he gets to a ledge, where the cliff drops off, he leans out perpendicularly, his body silhouetted against the water far below. He takes another step and drops out of sight. When he arrives at the first rappel station, he shouts up for Carl and me to follow. We’ll rappel three times to reach the bottom of the cliff. Later, I ask Tom if he feels any regret that more climbers are going to Rogers Rock. One thing that bothers him is that later climbers affixed a number of protective bolts on routes he did without bolts — a practice he regards as bad form. “I climbed there for 20 years and put only one bolt in,” he says. On balance, though, he doesn’t mind the change. The climbers have opened new routes and help keep all the routes free of dirt and lichen. “It’s not the solitary experience it once was,” he says, “but now that I’m retired, I can go on a weekday with you guys.” E
DIRECTIONS: From Northway Exit 24, drive east on County 11 to NY 9N north of Bolton Landing. Turn left and follow NY 9N to Rogers Rock Campground, about three miles north of the hamlet of Hague. To get to the canoe-launching site, follow to the end the campground road that leads past campsite 260. When open, the campground charges a $6 day-use fee.
off thehead beaten path page
RUE SAINT-LOUIS at night, Old Québec. — PHOTO BY LUC-ANTOINE COUTURIER
Poutine Spirit F
quebec city: impressive food scene, lots of history and vibrant festivals
by john adamian
or those living in the Northeast or New England, the notable features often used to market Quebec as a tourist destination can seem all too familiar. Maple syrup: We’ve got that. Glorious fall colors: Check. Frigid winter temperatures: Yup. Seventeenth-century settler history: We can compete on that front, too. And so it’s easy for people in the Northeast to view Quebec as something like a mirror reflection of our region, but with French accents. Still, there are good reasons to consider hopping in the car and heading north of the border for a taste of Quebecoise charm. Montreal has got big city appeal and all of the melting-pot cultural offerings that come with that, but Quebec City, about 150 miles farther to the northeast, is a real getaway. If you can’t swing airfare to France, a long weekend in Quebec City is your next best bet.
One of the oldest European settlements in North America, with its stone buildings, fortified walls and narrow winding streets, Quebec City, first settled in 1608, possesses a feeling of history to rival anyplace in Puritan New England. Because of its extreme cold and heavy snowfalls in the winter, Quebec City is a destination for cold-weather activities like ice skating, sledding and cross-country skiing. Quebec City is routinely listed in the top three of the world’s snowiest cities (ahead of Moscow, Russia and Reykjavik, Iceland). To demonstrate their mastery of the arctic temperatures, each February Quebec hosts one of the most magnificent winter carnivals in the world. The carnival includes an immense ice palace, snow sculptures, canoe races and festive night parades — think Mardi Gras in a snow globe. But if partying in temperatures approaching absolute zero is not your thing, Quebec City gets equally festive as the days get longer and the temperatures
rise. And with days as short and cold as a Quebec winter, the people of Quebec are justified in feeling exuberant and a little giddy when the Summer Solstice rolls around. Quebec’s Summer Festival is a music-saturated rush in July, with live music filling up the city’s streets and impressive parks. In years past artists such as Roger Waters and Metallica have drawn crowds of over 100,000. The 2013 festival happens from July 4 through 14, and some of the musical acts will include Bruno Mars and Belle & Sebastian. If crowds of people are the opposite of what you’re looking for in a vacation, the area offers plenty of tranquil nature to enjoy. Within the city is the historic Plains of Abraham Park, with its walking trails overlooking the St. Lawrence River, the site of some of the city’s big festivals. Just about 30 miles north of the city is the Jacques-Cartier National Park, made up of roughly 260 square miles of forest, where you might spot moose, caribou or gray wolves. Nature’s grandeur and an imposing sense of nothingness are on hand here. You’ll also see a lot of sugar maples. Quebec’s vast woodland stretches make it the world’s biggest maple syrup producer. (Sorry, Vermont.) All those maples (and oak and other trees) look brilliant when leaf-peeping season kicks into high gear. That makes Quebec a prime destination on the fall-color tour. It also means that folks in Quebec know their way around some sweet maple syrup. And you’d have to have access to excess syrup supplies in order to come up with a dish as decadent as maple syrup pie, which I consider to be the defining dessert of Quebec. Maple syrup pie is sort of like pecan pie, only sweetened entirely with maple syrup, and minus the pecans. It’s so intensely sweet that it triggers feelings of panic, but it is creamy, approaching a kind of pudding-like divine perfection. It may be worth driving to Quebec City just to try this.
ow that we’ve broached the subject of cuisine in Quebec City, we’ll have to discuss a contentious food item: poutine. For years poutine — fries drowned in cheese curds and gravy, basically — was a punch-line to joke about Quebec’s food. Some people found — and still find — the stuff to be obscene. But others have embraced poutine as a regional badge of identity. And as with any other of-the-people food (like corndogs, or mac and cheese, say) someone is always ready to redefine and fancify a dish like poutine, and that’s what many chefs have done in Quebec City and elsewhere in Canada. It may no longer take several beers before you’d think about ordering poutine, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a good way to end a night on the town. If you begin to suffer from poutine and maple syrup fatigue (it happens), consider stopping off at Le Billig, a relatively new traditional Breton creperie on Rue St. Jean that serves salidou, a salted butter caramel that makes some people get very excited. They also serve duck confit crepes. All that over-the-top grub may make you want to compensate with a little ac-
AERIAL VIEW of Old Québec. — PHOTO BY JEAN-FRANÇOIS BERGERON/ENVIRO FOTO
CHÂTEAU FRONTENAC overlooking boulevard Champlain. — PHOTO BY YVES TESSIER/TESSIMA
tivity. It might be a good time to go watch a bunch of acrobats perform feats of incredible flexibility and superhuman precision. Let the experts do the strenuous work while you digest your lunch. Cirque du Soleil was founded in the province of Quebec, and the troupe still has strong ties to the region. Cirque du Soleil has in recent years performed Les Chemins Invisibles, a free multipart production created especially for Quebec City. The cutting-edge circus and performance group routinely brings its productions to Quebec City, and the city possesses a culture of street theater and festivals that clearly informs Cirque du Soleil’s aesthetic. One thing to remember when you visit Quebec City: they speak French. So, a dictionary or a phrase book will come in handy. Also, if you drive, bring a valid U.S. passport to make border-crossing smooth. And if your visit happens in any season other than summer, bring warm clothing. E If You Go: see our tips on page 37
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off the beaten path continued from page 35
if you go… Stay Here:
MEDUSE COOPERATIVE CUTTINGEDGE ARTS COLLECTIVE
1 rue des Carrières 418-692-3861, fairmont.com This grand hotel, built in 1893, is probably one of the most famous spots in Quebec City. It looks a little like a European castle. Probably not your most affordable option. RUE SAINTE-ANNE, Old Québec. — PHOTO BY YVES TESSIER/TESSIMA
541, rue De Saint-Vallier Est 418-640-9218, meduse.org Studios, galleries, performance spaces, a restaurant, film workshops, housing and more links this multidisciplinary cooperative.
MUSÉE DE LA CIVILISATION
66 rue Sainte-Ursule 418-692-0958, chezhubert.com A B&B in the Old City. A good starting point for exploring the city on foot. Housed in a Victorian townhouse.
85 rue Dalhousie 418-643-2158, mcq.org Housed in the Old City, this museum usually features exhibits that showcase the humanities, with recent shows featuring things like Mauri culture and Nigerian art. In 2013, see exhibits on video games, on La Belle Époque Paris and the history of tourism in Quebec.
9 av. Ste-Geneviève 418-694-1987 manoir-sur-le-cap.com More affordable than many other options. Be sure your room has AC if you need it (in the summer).
Eat Here: LE BILLIG — TRADITIOAL BRETON CREPES
526 Rue Saint-Jean 418-524-8341 Duck confit, or salted caramel. LE CLOCHER PENCHE BISTRO
203 Saint-Joseph E St., 418-640-0597 A small, good, reliable and reasonable bistro.
ILE D’ORLEANS — SCENIC FARMLAND
iledorleans.com This little island is only a few miles downstream from Quebec City. There are small farms, inns and vineyards. Taste locally distilled liqueurs and tour world famous lavender gardens. PARC NATIONAL DE LA JACQUES-CARTIER
sepaq.com/pq/jac About 30 miles north of the city, this park offers hiking and skiing and scenic views of remote wilderness. BATTLEFIELDS PARK
75 Rue St-Joseph Est, 418-780-1903 Japanese noodles will provide needed warmth on a cold Quebec night. Very popular with locals.
835 Avenue Wilfrid Laurier 418-649-6157 ccbn-nbc.gc.ca/_en/index.php Inside the city, this complex includes the majestic Plains of Abraham and Des Braves Park, a perfect place to stroll and gaze at over the St. Lawrence River.
PORTE SAINT-LOUIS, Old Québec. PHOTO BY YVES TESSIER/TESSIMA
Aspens, Northern New Mexico, 1958. Photograph by Ansel Adams. ÂŠ2012 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust
Mount Williamson, The Sierra Nevada, from Manzanar, California, 1945. Photograph by Ansel Adams. ÂŠ2012 The Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust
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just the two of us
CANADIAN FALLS: Niagara from the Canadian side.
Falling F in Love niagara falls is a perfect weekend getaway — even if you’re already married
by kathy ceceri » photos courtesy niagara falls tourism council
or some people, a romantic getaway is a time to avoid anything more strenuous than lying on a beach. But for us, the perfect trip alone usually revolves around exercise and adventure in a setting of breathtaking beauty. For that, Niagara Falls is the ideal vacation spot — and you don’t have to be a newlywed or a thrill seeker to enjoy it. The city of Niagara Falls, N.Y., a little over five hours west of Albany on the New York State Thruway, lies along the Niagara River connecting Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. Across the river the Canadian city of Niagara Falls, Ontario, is easily reached by crossing the border via the dramatic Rainbow Bridge. Joining the two are the falls themselves — American, Bridal Veil and Horseshoe — marking the edge of the Niagara Escarpment. Formed after the last Ice Age about 12,000
years ago, a total of more than 3,000 tons of water pours over the roughly 170-foot drop every second, producing electricity used on both sides of the border. But for visitors, that first sight of the falls is even more powerful — the words “force of nature” take on meaning here like nowhere else. Europeans first reached the falls in 1678, and the earliest-known honeymooners in Niagara Falls were Jerome Bonaparte (brother of Napoleon) and his American bride in 1804. The publicity — and the new railroad — soon brought tourists and lovers from around the world, and weddings and honeymoons are still one big reason people visit the falls. The other, of course, is the city’s history of daredevil stunts. In 2012 thousands turned out to see tightrope walker Nik Wallenda perform the first aerial crossing in a hundred years. But the earliest person to go over the
just the two of us
falls in a barrel was a middle-aged schoolteacher named Annie Edson Taylor in 1901. Since then, only a handful of brave souls have successfully accomplished that same feat. (The tiny Daredevil Museum displays some of the scarily flimsy containers.) Most visits to the falls are less dramatic but just as memorable. The two sides, Canadian and American, have distinctly different atmospheres, and you’ll want to experience both. On the U.S. side, the prime attraction is Niagara Falls State Park. Opened in 1885, its 400 acres of wooded trails were designed by landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, who also created New York City’s Central Park. On the paths winding through the park and the bridges that cross over to Goat Island, which separates the American and the Bridal Veil Falls, you can peer right down into the rapids. There’s even an observation deck jutting out over the cliff, for the best views of the cataracts from the American side. Pick up a Discovery Pass for admission to the park’s big attractions. First on your must-see list is the Maid of the Mist. Also accessible from the Canadian side, this fleet of tour boats takes passengers right by the falls on the U.S. side and into the eddies below the Horseshoe Falls. The effect is astounding. A close second is the Cave of the Winds, which leads you right to the foot of the Bridal Veil Falls. The cave itself collapsed a century ago, but an elevator through the dank solid rock takes you to a system of wooden stairs and platforms where you’ll be close enough to touch the waters as they rush by (or, depending on the winds, have them touch you!). Both tours provide rain ponchos, and the Cave of the Wind also includes souvenir sandals. Just a trolley ride away is the Niagara Gorge Discovery Center, with displays highlighting the area’s history and geology. This is also the starting point for several hiking paths downstream from the falls. I recommend the hour-long descent along the Great Gorge Railway Trail to the Whirlpool Bridges, where you’ll get a glimpse of the turbulent rapids, still within sight of the misty clouds rising off the falls. The area offers plenty of good bicycling, too. We got adventurous and continued past the end of the well-maintained, three-mile-long Robert Moses Recreation Trail and onto the still-unreclaimed part, enjoying fantastic river views and an exciting ride across a fenced-off dam. Next time we’ll take the road from nearby Lewiston to Old Fort Niagara on the shores of Lake Ontario, an American stronghold since 1726. However, nothing compares to a helicopter ride over the falls themselves. Rainbow Air in the heart of downtown on the New York side offers 15-minute tours that take you around the falls for brilliant overhead shots you can’t get any other way. Longer flights are available too. They’re not inex-
OBSERVATION DECK and Maid of the Mist. — PHOTO BY COLLEEN INGERTO
VISIT THE MANY PARKS in Ontario and Niagara on the Niagara Parks circuit. (Check niagaraparks.com for a full listing.)
if you go… Stay Here:
WHIRLPOOL STATE PARK
222 1st Street 716-299-0200; thegiacomo.com This office highrise-turned-boutique hotel is a short walk from the state park and the Falls. Lovely penthouse lounge for breakfast or relaxing. RED COACH INN
2 Buffalo Avenue 866-719-2070; redcoach.com A quaint English Tudor-style small hotel with Old World ambiance overlooking the Upper Rapids. Its excellent restaurant features a fresh and interesting American menu.
454 Main Street 716-284-2800; rainbowairinc.com DAREDEVIL MUSEUM
303 Rainbow Boulevard 716-282-1765 SENECA NIAGARA CASINO
310 Fourth Street 877-873-6322 thesenecacasinos.com
CANADIAN SIDE DINOSAUR ADVENTURE GOLF
4960 Clifton Hill 905-358-3676; cliftonhill.com
501 3rd Street 716-285-9463 Quiet and trendy, offering both tapas and full meals along with wines from around the Niagara region.
CANADIAN SIDE 5195 Magdalen Street 888-783-7772; agcuisine.com Gourmet dishes based on regional, seasonal specialties.
Do This: MAID OF THE MIST BOAT TOUR
CAVE OF THE WINDS
Niagara Falls State Park 716-278-1730 niagarafallsstatepark.com NIAGARA GORGE DISCOVERY CENTER
Niagara Falls State Park 716-278-1070 niagarafallsstatepark.com
5200 Robinson Street 888-975-9566; skylon.com
Information: NIAGARA USA OFFICIAL VISITOR CENTER
10 Rainbow Boulevard Niagara Falls, N.Y. 877-FALLS-US niagara-usa.com
U.S. SIDE 716-284-8897 maidofthemist.com
4950 Clifton Hill 905-358-4793; cliftonhill.com
pensive but definitely worth the splurge. When night falls things get quiet on the American side. Aside from the wellregarded Seneca Niagara Casino, most of the action in recent decades has moved to the Canadian side. The easiest way to get there is a stroll across the Rainbow Bridge, which at night affords an unobstructed view of the colored lights playing on the cascading waters. Passage across the border is quick but requires a passport — and you’ll need 50 cents to get back through the turnstile to the American side. Whether the carnival of sideshow attractions on Clifton Hill, the main commercial drag on the Ontario side — including Ripley’s Believe it or Not Museum, simulator ride theaters and wax museums and haunted houses galore — could be considered romantic is a matter of taste. But it’s fun to mingle with the crowds and take in the flashing lights and the glitz. If you’re up for it, take a ride on the illuminated Niagara Skywheel or try a round of Dinosaur Adventure Golf, featuring giant creatures that roar and a volcano that erupts in flames at regular intervals. The Canadian side also offers novelty shopping (such as the Hershey Store filled with chocolate), two casinos, and the Skylon Tower, which looks like the Space Needle and boasts an observation deck that lets you see all the way to Buffalo. But the real Niagara Falls is right outside, only a few steps away. E
RAINBOW AIR HELICOPTER TOURS
Eat Here: WINE ON THIRD
LOOK UP: The Skylon Tower.
Robert Moses Parkway 716-284-5778; nysparks.com
NIAGARA FALLS TOURISM
5400 Robinson Street Niagara Falls, Ontario niagarafallstourism.com 800-563-2557
And If You’re Getting Married: For a $40 fee and with the proper documentation you can walk into the city clerk’s office for a quickie wedding ceremony any weekday from 8 to 3:30; more romantic options are plentiful as well.
last call BEST PLACE FOR… A SLOPE-SIDE REPAST
Mangy Moose 3295 Village Dr., Teton Village, Wyo. (307) 733-4913 mangymoose.com Bayly praises this apres-ski landmark for its tasty pub fare. “I’m a sucker for bar food,” says Bayly. “Chicken wings, potato skins … all the stuff that will kill you with a smile on your face.”
The Silver Dollar Bar The Wort Hotel 50 North Glenwood St., Jackson Hole (307) 733-2190 worthotel.com “It has more than 2,000 silver dollars inlaid in the old western bar, and plenty of ambiance,” says Bayly. A CULTURED BREAK FROM THE SLOPES
A FREE-FALL WITHOUT A PARACHUTE
The Million Dollar Cowboy Bar 25 North Cache St., Jackson Hole (307) 733-2207 milliondollarcowboybar.com “It’s the best place to saddle up for a sip,” says Bayly. “There are Wild West murals on the walls, and if you really want to feel like a cowboy or cowgirl, hop up on the saddles at the bar and sip on a beer.” SILVER DOLLAR AMBIANCE
Why I Love Jackson Hole, Wyo. by stacey morris » photo by paul barrett
apital District residents have been waking up to Phil Bayly’s smooth, even delivery of breaking headlines for decades. He began reporting for WNYT nearly 30 years ago, and is best known for hosting channel 13’s Today as well as the network’s talk show Early Today. What viewers may not know about the anchor is that he’s been an avid skier since his college days, and it’s a sport that often dictates where he vacations. It was the ski slopes of Colorado that drew the Chicago native to the Rockies “as soon as the last bell rang in high school,”he says. After graduating from Colorado State University, where Bayly complemented his journalism studies with ski racing, he worked at a number of radio jobs before making the transition to television journalism. Bayly moved to the Albany area in 1986 when he took a job with WNYT, and decided to put down roots in the region in part because of its similarities to his beloved Rocky Mountain ski slopes. “This area reminds me of the Rocky Mountains,” he says. “We’re so close to
SKIING WHERE THE BUFFALO ROAM
Yellowstone National Park West Yellowstone, Montana (307) 344-7381 (general information) (800) 221-1151 (Yellowstone Snow Tours) nps.gov/yell “From Jackson Hole, you reach Yellowstone through Idaho and then Montana to the town of West Yellowstone; it’s the only way to get into the national part in the winter. You can either snowmobile in or grab some cross-country skis and hitch a ride on a bombardier [a bus-sized all-terrain vehicle] into the park,” says Bayly. “I get dropped off near the geyser basin. The steaming geysers look like skyscrapers. I sometimes end the day with an adventure to tell about a buffalo who wanted to stand exactly where I was standing; and I’ve discovered it’s best to let the buffalo stand where they want to. I always make it a point to watch Old Faithful erupt, sometimes sharing the view with elks. … It’s fantastic. Then I wind up at the Old Faithful Lodge, a luxurious but reasonably priced place to stay, right in Yellowstone, open from mid-December through mid-March.”
A WILD WEST SALOON EXPERIENCE
at elk paintings, just look across the road at the real thing. … The National Elk Refuge is right there.”
The National Museum of Wildlife Art 2820 Rungius Road, Jackson Hole (307) 733-5771 wildlifeart.org “Its collection is full of paintings and sculptures of wildlife in their natural surroundings,” says Bayly. “And the building itself is designed to look like old ruins that blend into the beautiful natural scenery. If you tire of looking
Corbet’s Couloir Jackson Hole Mountain Resort (307) 733-2292 3200 West McCollister Dr., Teton Village, Wyo. “It’s a leap into an expert ski run at the top of Jackson Hole, and was only first skied in 1967,” says Bayly. “It’s on one list as number four of the ‘Top 50 things for a Skier to Do Before You Die.’”
world-class skiing here. Ski areas like Whiteface, Gore, Mount Snow, and Stratton are all resorts that were on the cover of Ski magazine when I was growing up.” Living so close to skiing hot spots means Bayly has no shortage of places to unleash his inner ski bum on the weekends. But when he’s ready for an extended adventure on the slopes, he heads to Jackson Hole, Wyo. “It’s one of the best vacations in the United States,” says Bayly. “Downtown Jackson has the flavor of an old western town, but with good restaurants, bars, and shopping … and the arches in the town park are made entirely of elk antlers.” With Jackson Hole, Montana and Idaho all within driving distance of one another, Bayly always makes it a point to ski through Yellowstone National Park for a wilderness adventure like no other. “The spot where Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho collide is the best of America’s playgrounds,” he says. “The adventures are countless.” E
HAMPTON BEACH★NH $14 million in renovations!
in 3rd Year
Newly updated facilities and Seashell Stage!
★★★★★ SUPER STAR BEACH
earns top honors for clean water 5 STAR RATING: Rated in the top 5 beaches in US and in the top 10 values for resorts in America for water quality and safety by the National Resources Defense Council.
Hampton Beach is rated #1 in water cleanliness of all beaches in the U.S.A.!
as awarded by The Surfrider Foundation & Sierra Club’s “The Cleanest Beach Award”.
Bienvenue á Hampton
The #1 rated U.S.A. Super Star Beach!
Over 100 Free Events • 80 Free Nightly Concerts • Spectacular Fireworks Displays Every Wed. Night & Holidays • World Class 13th Annual Master Sand Sculpting Competition $15,000 in prizes, June 20-21-22 • Children’s Festival, Aug. 12-16 • Talent Competition, Aug. 23-24-25 • Seafood Festival, Sept. 6-7-8
For a FREE Hampton Beach Vacation Guide and to View our Beach Cam, Visit www.hamptonbeach.org or call 1-800-GET-A-TAN.