Spring Edition Mar/Apr 2013
Covering Saratoga County
Owner/Publisher Chad Beatty General Manager Robin Mitchell Production Director Richard Hale Managing Editor Andrew Marshall Advertising Chris Bushee, Jim Daley, Cindy Durfey Graphic Designers Eric Havens, Jessica Kane Writers Helen Susan Edelman Arthur Gonick Chelsea Hoopes Silver Meghan Lemery Andrew Marshall Patricia Older Hollis Palmer Photographers MarkBolles.com Stock Studios Photography Published by Saratoga TODAY Newspaper Five Case Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 tel: (518) 581-2480 fax: (518) 581-2487 SaratogaTODAYNewspaper.com Simply Saratoga is brought to you by Saratoga TODAY Newspaper, Saratoga Publishing, LLC. Saratoga Publishing shall make every effort to avoid errors and omissions but disclaims any responsibility should they occur. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by a ny means without prior written consent of the publisher. Copyright (c) 2013, Saratoga TODAY Newspaper
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Cover photo courtesy of MarkBolles.com
CONTENTS F e atures 6 Carriage House Chronicles 20 Saratoga Golfers’ Guide
Chelsea Hoopes Silver
39 Pilates: Up Close and Personal
Helen Susan Edelman
The Story of the Backwards House
48 and the Disappearing Mayor 66 A Legacy for the Future
What’s Inside Restaurant Review The Local Pub 14
Fashion Guide 30 saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
Simple Truths 46 Bookmarks
Whiskers and Tails 54
Summer Camp Guide 56 Save the Date 78 Maple Weekend 80 Simply Saratoga | Spring 2013 | 5
Jennifer Lanne in her studio with a few of her recent works. She constantly plays with her studio, changing the arrangements of objects on tables and shelves like little scenes on exhibit.
Carriage House Chronicles Story by Chelsea Hoopes Silver Photographs courtesy of Stock Studios Photography
s some of you may know, I have a blog called The Carriage House Chronicles, where I feature various design, architecture, lifestyle, and art inspirations I find while living in the beautiful and historically rich city of Saratoga Springs. I come by my love of collecting and house obsession honestly- my parents have been flipping and building houses since I was 5 years old and my grandfather travelled the world collecting art and antiques. I also love a nice, “raw canvas” and I would probably never buy a “turn-key” home. My first and current home was both a big renovation and even my store (Silverwood, Home & Gallery, which I own with my mother) was a total renovation. Although I can certainly see the appeal of buying something that is done, what can
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I say, I love a good project! Now I’ve got a new “project”—adapting my blog into a series for the award-winning Simply Saratoga! And for my inaugural article, I figured it would be nice to feature a property with an actual carriage house. Owned by Jennifer and Dick Lanne, the “carriage house” is technically a 200 year-old barn in Ballston Spa that is now an artist’s studio, working barn, and squirrel sanctuary (more on that later), but I’m sure there was a carriage in there at some point! About nine years ago, the Lanne’s bought “Devil’s Hop Farm,” named after Scottish ex-patriot Angus McDearmid who saw a “demon apparition” on the property sometime in the 1780s (I kid you notit’s written on the historical marker in their front yard!). saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
The house is a rustic collector’s dream, as Jennifer has a curator’s eye for all things unusual and rusty. Everywhere you turn, in the house or in her barn studio, there are little vignettes and collections of her whimsical and beautiful flea market and antique finds. Even the little “nests” she’s built in the barn for their rescued, orphan squirrel, Archer (who comes and goes as she pleases, but prefers her cozy barn digs), has touches of Jennifer in it—little pieces of ribbon and greenery here, an antique doll house there. Jennifer is a painter and her interior decor instincts meld with her “day job” seamlessly. Her glossy, vibrant, and primitive paintings (largely florals, farm animals, and some landscapes) are truly unique- there’s no mistaking a Lanne original. They are often embellished with vintage- looking glass glitter and antique velvet ribbon, small adornments that make all the difference. In the 10 years she’s been painting, Jennifer has gained a huge following throughout the United States and beyond, showing her work at galleries from here to California and as a regular exhibitor at the renowned Country Living Fairs, sharing a booth with celebrity picker Cari Cucksey. I’ve been working with Jennifer for several years now, but I was still so pleased when she granted me access into her studio and home, which is apparently on several magazine editors and book authors’ “short lists” already (and for good reason, it’s a photo grapher’s dream!). On a cold, dark day in February (some time we’ll come back when it’s warmer for the breathtaking gardens), we walked the property and discussed her own love of collecting, art, design, and architecture. CS: How did your unique style of painting evolve? JL: I would say my style has evolved organically. When I first started painting I tried to emulate vintage florals and landscapes, and somehow my style emerged. I have a few great art books on Victorian Paintings as well as Hudson River Paintings [and] I love to look to them as inspiration.
(above left) Through out the barn and house, Jennifer’s vignettes give every space such a sense of charm and history. Every detail is so deliberate and layered with such an artist’s eye.
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(above right) Inside Jennifer’s studio she has created a cozy corner to retreat to, surrounded by her paintings and pretty creations.
CS: There are tiny, antique cows in every corner, intriguing little shadow boxes hung from every wall, and fluffy angel’s wings suspended above your studio sofa. Everywhere I look, it’s like there is a story being told. What things influence your interior design? JL: Antiques, vintage items. It doesn’t so much matter what it is. I am usually drawn to color, and [I] love things that are imperfect. I love pairing a formal fancy piece with something primitive they help temper each other. I’m sure people would love to know where you find such unusual, authentic pieces. Do you have any favorite antiques shows or fairs? What are your local go-to sources for antiques? They are a lot of great local antique shows and fairs: Washington County, Round Lake, Schoharie Antiques Show, and Ballston Spa also has a lot of great antique shops I like to frequent; or for a day trip, Hudson is loaded with goods. CS: Do you shop online at all? JL: I do love to check out eBay from time to time, which is always good for a quick fix.
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The stonework in much of the barn (including here on the exterior wall) looks like it’s original to the 200+ year old structure, but it was actually hand-laid by Jennifer and Dick to replace old rotting walls.
CS: Of all your unique, antique finds, what are your three favorites? JL: [It is] difficult to pick just three! I get very attached to pieces, not just because I like them, but because of the memory of acquiring the piece— that’s the problem with antiques! One [of my favorites] would have to be an amazing, old painting that was a gift from a friend. The other is the old house ledger [from 1810, which a previous owner found in the home], as that is irreplaceable.
CS: I know I am always scheming and dreaming (to my husband’s dismay) of new home improvement projects I’d like to do. Do you have any dream renovations or projects for the house or studio that you have not tackled yet? JL: Every time I say “no more projects” I will surely think of one. When spring/summer hits I am sure my wheels will be spinning for an outdoor project—maybe a stone addition at some point down the road.
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This old cobbler’s ledger dates to the first decade of the nineteenth century and is written in the most beautiful, quirky script. The velvet bow and embellished shadow box are Jennifer’s own whimsical flourishes.
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CS: Is there a particular renovation/project in the house or studio you were most excited to tackle? JL: Any project that gives instant visual gratification is my favorite. Also, renovating the barn was a huge undertaking (still underway), but the results were so gratifying. CS: What’s your favorite part of owning an old home? JL: It is just riddled with character. Even the creakiness becomes a sound that is quaint. CS: What’s your least favorite? JL: It is a lot of upkeep, but a labor of love. Chelsea Silver owns Silverwood Home & Gallery in downtown Saratoga Springs. She is also a real estate agent for Town & Country Properties and does interior design consulting. With degrees in English and American Fine and Decorative Arts, she is very happy to be combining these two passions in her new endeavor writing for Simply Saratoga.
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PUB AND TEAHOUSE SARATOGA SPRINGS, NEW YORK
Where Else Can You Get Fried Pickles?
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Story by Helen Susan Edelman Photographs courtesy of Stock Studio Photography
inner in downtown Saratoga Springs is mostly an upand-down-Broadway-and-its-side streets experience, but if you look toward the west, to the corner of Grand and Beekman in the historic Dublin area, you’re surely going to find yourself at The Local Pub and Teahouse. Thus, it was that Simply Saratoga’s intrepid publisher, Chad Beatty, his witty wife, Kim, their curious son, Keegan, and I arrived there on a Friday evening at 5:30 for a casual dinner and incisive conversation. The restaurant was already lively; clearly this place draws a crowd that gets out of work and goes out to play. People greet each other by name; it put us all in a really good, neighborly kind of mood. Definitely an up-close-and-personal social experience in a gleaming, inviting space that includes a beautiful wood bar, cut stone, leather booths, small tables and outdoor dining in season. Fair warning: if you want a Friday night table
or brunch on weekends, get there early, or plan to be part of the second seating. The operative word, though, is “plan” if you want to eat. If you’re just stopping in for a drink, wander in and make your way to the bar. I loved our table. Tucked into a corner, it was the perfect location from which to keep my eye on the door and my back to the wall while I partied with my friends. Our little group isn’t into alcohol (although The Local is praised by beer aficionados for its broad selection, as well as wine, hard cider and other colorful must-show-your-ID potables), so we stuck to sodas—Chad’s was a bottle of intensely lip-puckering gingery-something. To be safe, I had a double shot of club soda and lime. Don’t be shy about asking for one of many certified-organic teas, coffee, milk or juice— there’s plenty of choices, all served with a smile, in our case by a friendly female server in jeans and a cool Local t-shirt (for sale, Simply Saratoga | Spring 2013 | 15
$15). By the way, if you fall in love with The Local and want everyone to know, you can purchase a men’s polo, hoodie, mugs, teacups, Local hot sauce and more. We were all hungry, so we ordered with gusto. To begin, there was a veggie salad ($9), a great mix of fresh items mixed with hummus and cheese; fried pickles and “poutine fries,” a Quebecois specialty topped with melted cheese and gravy. I have to say, I’ve never had a fried pickle ($8) before and I was a little suspicious when I saw it on the menu—but, this is a memorable flavor! They were equal parts tart and crispy. Can’t imagine it? Consider ordering a plate of six. You could say it’s an acquired taste but we all seemed to acquire it pretty quickly. The fries ($8) worried me for their addictive qualities—I ate one, said I would have one more, ate two, said I would have one more, ate three, etc. Helping myself to only this fistful was actually a show of restraint. Seriously. The main course was served promptly after the apps— not too quickly, not too much waiting. There was fluid movement from one course to the next. Chad and I went a little crazy and got steaks smothered in onions and mushrooms. The beautiful Kim kept a cool head and ordered a very generous portion of fish and chips, and Keegan put us all to shame with two bowls full of mac and cheese. Between bites he took a minute to signal an enthusiastic thumbs up, which
I interpreted as a good omen for the restaurant. (There’s a kids’ menu with PB&J, grilled cheese, mac and cheese and chicken fingers, all accompanied by nacho chips and celery. $5 for each item.) The menu also features pub classics like chicken wings, Bangers and Mash and Shepherd’s Pie, tea sandwiches, and house-made soups and chilies. Portions are generous, prices are fair—you can take the whole family and have money left for movies. People outside Saratoga Springs ask me about The Local, which is widely viewed as an excellent traditional English- and Irish-specialty restaurant. There’s a lot of upand-down head-nodding when you mention “The Local” and “hamburger” or “fish and chips” in the same sentence. It seems like everyone has landed there at least once by accident, then again and again deliberately. In the past, when I’ve gone in for lunch, I’ve had everything from burgers (can you say “perfectly cooked?”) to a hearty Cobb salad. (A word about the salads: they do not skimp!) There was also my love affair one day with a veggie burger (grilled eggplant slices with fresh mozzarella—excellent.) When you find something you really like on a menu, it’s not as easy to experiment, because you get a craving for that specific first thing loved. Life is like that. For the important things, there’s no substitute. But this is about a restaurant, not existential saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
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angst. (Also, a shout-out here to Kevin Cudahy. When he turned 21 he allowed me to treat him to a beer—The Local was his first-choice destination.) Chad, Keegan and I cleaned our plates pretty well. Kim brought part of her dinner home. We all claimed to be “too full to eat another bite,” but it didn’t slow us down a bit; mandatory protestations aside, we shared a slice of turtle cheesecake. I’m glad I didn’t miss that opportunity. I can imagine The Local being a magnet for dessert-seekers longing for a tasty treat. Lest you be fooled into typecasting this pub as primarily an ale house, I want to stop you in your tracks and emphasize that The Local also serves an extensive assortment of organic teas including the herbal house blend, a special blend of peppermint, ginger root, licorice and clove; Earl Grey and Irish Breakfast teas, rich, aromatic black teas meant to be served with milk and sugar; Japanese Sencha, a full-bodied and flavorful green tea with a grassy undertone; exotic blends from Asia, South America and South Africa and many, many more. Sit with a friend, order a personal pot, let it steep and savor, savor, savor. There’s also an awesome weekend brunch—a great occasion for great tea. It wouldn’t be fair to withhold news about the Mug Club for those who consider themselves “a true local.” For $50 a year, members receive their very own mug hung
above the bar and can take advantage of weekly beer specials and the annual Mug Club party. Mug Club benefits include a personal 20 ounce mug; 25 percent more beer (20-ounce pour instead of a 16-ounce pint); Mug Club specials every Monday and Tuesday on featured drafts; member shirt; and member party. The Local offers a long, intelligent menu of beers and if you like to drink it, this is definitely a go-to destination. The Local is true to its name, prominently displaying on the menu that all the eggs are from Thomas Poultry Farm in Schuylerville, the breakfast meats are from Oscar’s Smoke House in Warrensburg, the milk and juice from Collin’s Meadowbrook Dairy in Saratoga Springs, maple syrup from Sugar Bush Alpaca Farm in Stowe, Vermont, beer sausage made with Brown’s Brewery Ale from Troy and cheesecake made locally at Saratoga Cheesecake Company in Saratoga Springs. This is definitely a something-for-everyone eatery, well worth the value. You look around and see that everyone is smiling. It’s the kind of place people refer to as their “favorite haunt.” You won’t hear me say this too often, but in this case, it’s good to get off Broadway for a few hours and disappear, just as long as you stay Local. The Local Pub and Teahouse is located at 142 Grand Avenue in the Beekman Street Art District and online at thelocalpubandteahouse.com
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Saratoga National Golf Club
458 Union Ave Saratoga Springs Year Course Opened: 2001 Architect: Roger G. Rulewich Club Pro: Anders Mattson Hours of Operation: Recommended scheduling tee time before 3 p.m. Pro Shop Contact: (518) 583-4653 Website: www.golfsaratoga.com Additional Information: Club rentals, caddies and forecaddies available. Photo courtesy of Golf Shots Unlimited
Saratoga Lake Golf Club
35 Grace Moore Road Saratoga Springs Year Course Opened: 2000 Architect: C. Michael Ingersoll Hours of Operation: Dawn to Dusk Pro Shop Contact: (518) 581-6616 Rates: Weekdays—$26 walking, $40 with cart; Weekends—$32 walking, $46 with cart Website: www.saratogalakegolf.com
Photo courtesy of Stock Studio Photography
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Eagle Crest Golf Club
1004 Route 146A Clifton Park Year Course Opened: 1991 Architect: Gino Turchi Club Pro: John (JP) Peterson Pro Shop Contact: (518) 877-7082 Rates: Weekdays—18 holes $29, 9 holes $18; Weekends—18 holes $34, 9 holes $20 (after 2 p.m. only) Cart Information: 18 holes $30 (twosome) $18 (single); 9 holes $16 (twosome or single) Website: www.eaglecrestgolf.com Photo provided
Brookhaven Golf Course
333 Alpine Meadows Road Porter Corners Year Course Opened: 1963 Architect: George Pulver Club Pro: Kevin Canale Pro Shop Contact: (518) 893-7458 Hours of Operation: 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Rates: Weekdays: $16 for 9 holes, $22 for 18 holes Weekend/Holiday: $27 for 18 holes Cart Information: $15 for both 9/18 holes of golf Website: www.brookhavengolfcourse.com Photo provided
262 Brownville Road Gansevoort Year Course Opened: 1999 Architect: James Heber Pro Shop Contact: (518) 792-4144, Joan Heber, Manager and Kevin Nielsen, Pro Shop Manager Hours of Operation: Early Season: 8 a.m. to dusk; Peak Season: 6 a.m. to dusk weekends and 7 a.m. to dusk weekdays Rates: $32 greens fees—18 holes; $19 greens fees—9 holes Cart Information: $15 per golfer for 18 holes; $8 for 9 holes Website: www.airwaymeadowsgolf.com Fun Fact: The golf course is unique, as small airplanes may be landing on the public airport in the center of the golf course while you play. There are warnings on #2 and #8 tees asking golfers not to tee off while planes are taking off or landing.
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Pioneer Hills Golf Club
3230 Galway Road Ballston Spa Year Course Opened: 1995 Architect: Allen Hills Club Pro: Michael Stefanik Pro Shop Contact: (518) 885-7000 Rates: 18 Holes with cart $29.00, $20 after 2 p.m. 18 holes walking, $20, 9 holes walking $10 Website: www.pioneerhillsgolf.com Photo provided
Fairways of Halfmoon
17 Johnson Road Mechanicville Year Course Opened: 1999 Architect: Gary Van Alstyne Pro Shop Contact: (518) 664-1578 Hours of Operation: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Daily Rates: Monday–Thursday: 18 holes with cart $38, 18 holes with no cart $22; Friday-Sunday: 18 holes with cart $44, 18 holes with no cart $28 Website: www.fairwaysofhalfmoon.com
Saratoga Spa State Park Golf Courses
60 Roosevelt Drive Saratoga Springs Year Course Opened: Original holes were opened in 1936. The redesigned course opened in 1960. Architect: William Mitchell Courses: In the Park, there is a “regulation” 18-hole course and a 9-hole Par-3 course. Hours of Operation: (Hours vary seasonally) Peak season: 5:15 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. (depending on activity) Pro Shop Contact: The pro shop can be reached by telephone on (518) 584-2006 ext. 10, or by email at email@example.com. Rates: Available at www.saratogaspagolf.com Cart Information: $16 per golfer for 18 holes; $10 per golfer for 9 holes Website: www.saratogaspagolf.com A message from the course: The golf courses are operated by a private company through a concession agreement with NYS Parks. Through that agreement significant dollars have been invested in the courses, which are in the best condition they have been in for many years. We also maintain a grass tee driving range. Photo provided
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Tee Bird North Golf Club
30 Reservoir Road Moreau Year Course Opened: 1962 Architect: Dan Irwin Club Pro: Todd Heyda Pro Shop Contact: (518) 792-7727 Rates: Available at www.teebirdgolf.com Website: www.teebirdgolf.com Photo provided
Tee Bird South Golf Club
65 Reynolds Road Moreau Year Course Opened: 2006 Architect: Dan Irwin Club Pro: Todd Heyda Pro Shop Contact: (518) 792-7727 Rates: Available at www.teebirdgolf.com Website: www.teebirdgolf.com
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A (Very) Beginner's Guide to Golf Story by Andrew Marshall Photo courtesy of MarkBolles.com
remember when I decided I wanted to play golf regularly. I had borrowed a friend’s clubs and went out with them for an afternoon on the links. I had no idea what I was doing. I thought to myself: “Just do it like the professionals do!” Tee up the ball, wind all the way up and give it a ride straight down the fairway on to the green. Of course, this kind of attitude will result in a few different things. You’re likely to miss the ball completely on your first swing, drive it so far out of sight that you will probably need to take another tee shot or quite possibly hurt yourself swinging like a madman. Golf is a game that will show you right away just how hard it is to be considered “good.” Take a trip to most local driving ranges and simply observe for a few minutes to see this principle in action. If you’re serious about starting to play golf regularly, it’s not a bad idea to consider a few lessons with a professional. One such PGA professional is Fred Fruisen, the men’s golf team coach at Skidmore College and owner and operator of CoachofGolf.com. “I started playing when I was seven,” said Fruisen. “My dad brought me out on the course and made me pull the cart, stuff like that. Eventually, I wanted to try it and I ended up playing a lot as a junior. I played other sports, too, but it seemed like it always came back to golf.” Fitting that Fruisen would always return to golf since the game is commonly referred to as a “lifetime sport.” While he may have a bit of a head start on the majority of his students when it comes to how long he’s been playing, he says there are a few basic things to consider when first getting into the game and that it starts with your equipment. “That’s the mistake a lot of people make is that they don’t get the equipment that’s right for them,” said Fruisen. “There’s an investment involved and you don’t want to make a huge investment when you first get started but if you play with equipment that’s just not for you, it’s going to be difficult for you to find success, which will cause your interest to wane. You probably won’t keep pursuing it. You’ll probably get frustrated and might decide to give it up.” Getting measured for your clubs is just step one. The next step would be to figure out what specifics you should look for in a set of clubs to suit your game. Fruisen points out that the speed of your swing is one of the bigger aspects to consider. “It’s not just the length of the club, but also that different kinds of shafts have different properties, different flexibility. Some are whippier, some are stiffer. Depending on what your swing speed is,
you’d pick the kind of equipment to suit it. Slower swings require a whippier club; faster swings should be with a stiff club.” It’s important to remember that while spending $1,000 on a set of clubs might guarantee you the nicest set on the course that day, it won’t really do you any good unless you’re swinging properly. “Pretty and shiny isn’t going to do you any good,” said Fruisen. “This is something I wrestle with as a college coach. A lot of guys want the newest and prettiest things. As far as its function, it doesn’t do them any good. In fact, it hurts them. Pretty and shiny is not the way to go.” A quality set of used clubs might be a good option if you’re looking to play golf on a budget. “If you don’t want to make a huge investment, places like Craigslist or eBay are the ways to go,” said Fruisen. The PGA-enforced limit on the number of clubs you can have in your bag during a tournament is 14. You won’t need nearly that many in your bag as you’re starting out. Fruisen recommends at least a driver or 3-wood, a hybrid club, every other iron, sand or pitch wedge and a putter. He recommends leaving out the first three irons until you’re more comfortable swinging a club. Once your clubs are all set, you should be considering some kind of instruction before you head out to the course and break your new equipment or worse—yourself. “You really need some kind of instruction,” said Fruisen. “You should be aware of what the proper stance is and what the proper grip is. It’s all very basic but it’s really, really important. You can go to the driving range and see people doing it on their own who won’t really have any success. If you’re not in the right position, you won’t have any success, which is true for most things in life, isn’t it?” Even if you aren’t interested in coaching or lessons, Fruisen says to take a trip to the library or the magazine stand and at least try to emulate what you’re seeing. “If you don’t get any lessons, get some books or some golf publications and do some research,” said Fruisen. One of the most crucial points in anyone’s swing is the follow through. While it might seem like a good idea to wind up and crush the ball with all your might, since the club is travelling in the opposite direction, your wild backswing is nothing but wasted energy. “Follow through is extremely important. It’s the first thing I teach. I don’t know if everyone does that, but when I go to a
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driving range and see everyone whiffing at the ball, I don’t see anyone getting to a full finish. They’re just swatting at it.” The tendency to swing for the fences often leads to unnecessary tension in the body, which alters your swing dramatically. “Never try and swing at 100 percent. The harder you swing, the worse you’re going to do. You have to get in a nice full, balanced finish position where you can stand there like a statue and if you can do that then you can repeat swings over and over again.” Golf isn’t just about long drives and big swings. In fact, the majority of the game is spent taking shorter, more concise shots at the green to reduce the number your number of strokes. “The biggest thing that amateurs or beginners should work on is chipping and putting. That’s the most important part of the game. It’s more than half your game with those two things right there. You’re talking about making the ball just go a matter of a few yards. If you can do that, you’re going to save a ton of strokes. Even the college guys and the professionals work on that most of the time, too.” Fruisen understands that it is important to work on all facets of the game, because if you ever hoped to compete in a tournament or even win a casual bet with a friend on a particular hole, the only one who will be making the shots will be you. “You have to do everything well, that’s what’s unique about golf,” said Fruisen. “In baseball, you play a position. Well, the second baseman doesn’t have to be a catcher or a center fielder. In golf, you have to be good at every part of the game.” It might take you a few days to get the hang of what your instructor tells you. It might take a few months or even years for that matter. One thing you should never do is give up. If this game was supposed to be easy, then it just wouldn’t be as much fun. If you happen to find your own style in the process, you can make the game your own. Just don’t forget the basics. “That’s the cool thing about golf is that there is more than one way to do it,” said Fruisen. “All the pros start in the same place, though. It all begins with the set up. From there, your swing is just like your fingerprint. Only you will swing like you. Everyone is built differently with different strengths and weaknesses. It’s fine to have your own personal swing. But just remember to start with set up, posture and grip alignment. Those are three things you have to have a good foundation with, and however you swing is how you swing.” saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
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Range Finder – Perhaps the most technologically ad-
vanced piece of equipment you could bring out onto the golf course with you, a range finder can help you when considering club selection and determining how to approach the pin. There are two kinds of range finders to consider: laser- and GPSbased. Laser finders work by sending a low power beam to the pin and its distance away is calculated based on the length of time it takes the beam to return to the device. GPS devices determine their position from received satellite signals and then calculate distances to course features. The Bushnell Neo GPS range finder displayed here retails for around $80, which lets you download specific courses from iGolf.com right to the device.
Golf Bag – Your bag
is ground zero to your golf game. It’s where you keep all your equipment including clubs, golf balls, gloves, tees, sunglasses or anything else you don’t want on your person. Most golf bags come with a special mechanism which allows them to stand freely on their own so you won’t have to lay them down across the ground.
Top Golf Accessories
Golf Cleats – If you’re looking to get the most out of your swing, your feet have to remain in place to achieve any kind of consistency. Help yourself out with a pair of golf cleats, which should keep your feet nice and steady when lining up that tee shot on a par five. Even the slightest slip can affect a golf swing tremendously. These Adidas cleats here are brand new for the 2013 season for a much more modern look on the golf course. Indoor Putting Green –
For all those times you want to practice your short game, but won’t be playing outdoors for a few days, or perhaps just to keep your putts crisp during the winter, an indoor green with automatic ball return is the way to go. Just don’t swing too hard, or you might take out a lamp or two.
Golf Balls – Obviously, this is one of the most important aspects of playing golf. There are many, many different kinds. Some are just different colors. Others boast such things as “titanium cores,” like this convenient pack of 18 from Wilson. The energy transfer from your swing to the special core in these golf balls is said to help you drive further and straighter. Rolling Caddy – A lot of folks rent a golf
cart to help get around the course, which carries your golf bag for you. For the rest of us hoping to get a little exercise, lugging around a bag gets cumbersome very quickly. As a remedy for tired shoulders, a rolling caddy is a great alternative to renting a cart. It also makes walking a full course that much easier. Simply strap your bag in and pull it behind you as you play.
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Golf Umbrella – Playing golf means getting to spend lots of time outdoors. Of course, the more you are outside, the more chance there is you’ll encounter some inclement weather. Golf Umbrellas are designed to keep you dryer and less distracted by the elements. This one from SportBrella ($45) doubles as a shelter and promises protection from the sun, rain, wind or anything else Mother Nature decides to throw your way during a round of golf. Drivers – This is the club that you use to make the ball travel the furthest. While it’s harder than it looks, having a quality driver can make all the difference. Take this Taylormade R1 ($360), with seven standard and five upright loft settings between 8-12 degrees, it’s a versatile club that can be adjusted to suit your current situation no matter what tee your standing at.
The way you grip your club is very important. If you hold it too tight, the tension in your body will alter your swing no matter what. Hold it too loose and you’re just as likely to send the club flying 100 yards as you are to hit the ball. Firm up your grip with this “handy” tool from Gripmaster. (Also works well for aspiring guitar players.)
Club/Putter Grips – Just
like how cleats keep your feet in the right spot through your entire swing, the grips on your clubs will make it easier to control as you attempt all kinds of difficult shots. Putter grips will keep your hands nice and steady, which makes all the difference when lining up a 30-foot putt or just tapping in from inside a foot.
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Common Golf Terms 1
Ace: A hole in one.
Birdie: A hole played in one stroke under par.
Eagle: A hole played in two strokes under par.
Double Eagle: A hole played three strokes under par. Also called an Albatross.
Bogey: A hole played one stroke over par.
Turkey: Three consecutive birdies during one round of golf.
Slice: Ball flight in which the ball starts out to the left (for a righthanded golfer) and then bends dramatically back to the right
Hook: Ball flight in which the golf ball starts out to the right (for a right-handed golfer) before curving severely back to the left
Duck-hook: A severe low hook that barely gets airborne.
Fore: A warning shout that a ball is coming your way, LOOK OUT!
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Spots & Stripes from Kut from the Kloth. Designed to be lived in and loved. Want her look? We have you covered from top to bottom!
Yellow Boutique 491 Broadway Ave Saratoga Springs
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You’re sure to heat up the beach while you’re sunning on the island shore in this rich paisley bandeau one piece swimsuit by Athena. With plenty of exotic details such as the beautiful jeweled brooch, decorative contrast band and molded cups this strapless one piece is designed to keep all eyes on you this season. Like every wise woman knows it’s hard to find swimwear that combines modern styling with shape elements that allow you to feel confident and comfortable, but at the Clothes Line of Saratoga we can “Suit Anyone”.
Clothes Line of Saratoga 486 Broadway Saratoga Springs
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Capture the essence of spring with this figure flattering head-turner by JAX.
Spoken Boutique 27 Church Street Saratoga Springs
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Jessica is on trend in this mint and orange abstract patterned dress by BCBG Max Azria. She chose a classic nude pump by Cole Haan to complete her look; a perfect ensemble for a day at the track.
Violet’s & Stella’s of Saratoga 494 Broadway Saratoga Springs
photo by Niki Rossi Photography, Hair and make-up by Ann-Marie Flores Salon. Simply Saratoga | Spring 2013 | 33
Romantic & feminine floral dresses from LA based
designers, For Love & Lemons, available at Lucia this Spring
454 Broadway, Saratoga Springs
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Prom Fashion Bird of Paradise Boutique…
Stunning exclusive prom gowns and unique dresses arriving weekly.
Hair & Make-up: Make Me Fabulous Photography: Mark Bolles
Bird of Paradise Boutique 75 Woodlawn Ave Saratoga Springs
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up close and personal By Helen Susan Edelman Photos provided
Joseph Pilates said, “You will feel better in 10 sessions, look better in 20 sessions, and other people will see a difference in 30.” I said, “Prove it.”
y daughters, Morgan and Taber Ward, had been on my case for years to find an exercise I like and stick with it. I had a million excuses not to—it was too cold outside to walk, gyms were too competitive, the YMCA was crowded after work, my knee hurt, I didn’t have the self-discipline to do it at home, I didn’t like equipment… So, my girls took control of the situation by buying me a gift certificate for Reform, a true Pilates studio, on Division Street. They knew I would never let such a gift languish. As if that weren’t enough to pique my guilt, they also provided Pilates garb; soft and stretchy, a perfect fit. There was no alternative to calling for an appointment. I had been vaguely aware of Pilates, which I had assumed (wrongly) was a variant of yoga. Now, I Googled “Pilates” to assess what I was getting into. I was encouraged to see that while the instructors looked lithe and fit, the students were mostly middleage females wearing comfortable workout clothes and assuming believable body positions. (I don’t want to over-generalize. There are male and female Pilates students of all ages, including young dancers and athletes and seniors who want to stay flexible. I am just typical of this studio, though a male instructor recently joined the staff and I see more men at private and group sessions.) Pilates (pronounced “pil-ă-teeze”) is fundamentally a body-conditioning program designed in Germany by Joseph Pilates in the early 20th century to build flexibility, strength, endurance, elasticity and range of motion in the legs, hips, arms, back and abdominals, and to improve mental fitness, which he
saw as interrelated with physical health. The practice emphasizes spinal and pelvic alignment, breathing, balance, coordination and symmetry. Pilates exercises can be modified in difficulty as the body conditions and adapts. Pilates is not like yoga, which involves meditation; it’s about movement. Significantly, Pilates also can accommodate various injuries or weaknesses and, while Pilates instructors are not physical therapists, I can attest that I have worked through various aches and come out better for it every time. In fact, Reform studio owner Meghan Del Prete—who graduated with honors in dance performance and choreography from Skidmore College and is on faculty there—estimates that more than half of students who come for instruction have some physical issue—whether it’s a shoulder, wrist, ankle or lower back—for which the basic exercises need to be modified. She says that even those who have trouble kneeling or bending are welcome at Reform, where instructors work one to one with students and pay close attention to individual needs. This is important because many people steer clear of exercise they think might exacerbate pre-existing weakness—sort of like me and my “mature” knees that make running impossible. Pilates doesn’t require you to pound on any joint. You stretch, you hold positions, you challenge your muscles, but the goal is not to cause pain or exhaust you. I liked it right away, especially because the instructors at Reform take the time to talk to you, learn your body’s idiosyncrasies and rhythms, personal style and limitations. Pilates’ benefits are not all subtle. It is also fun. Besides, your Simply Saratoga | Spring 2013 | 39
clothes will fit better (though it’s not a weight-loss method); you’ll feel stronger and more invigorated. It’s really beautiful both to watch and to do and it requires focus and mental discipline. You will walk away wanting more. Reform is a warm and soothing space—a, friendly, intelligent, non-competitive, supportive social environment; classes are convenient; private appointments are easy to schedule; the instructors are responsive and highly skilled, and there’s a great retail area with Pilates clothes and small equipment. The atmosphere in the studio is an important part of the experience. It’s small enough to be intimate, but large enough to accommodate a group of like-minded people. There’s no strutting. I attribute the good vibes of the place to the combination of management, staff and clients, all of whom contribute to the atmosphere by bringing good vibes of their own to the studio. Although I can’t speak for everyone else, in my case, Pilates works. I had tried Zumba and found it was harsh on my joints (I have had two surgeries on the cartilage in one knee and an ACL replacement in the other). In contrast, the stretching, flexing, tucking, tightening, reaching and breathing in Pilates has actually freed me to move more fluidly and stand taller. Pilates has changed my relationship with my body. It’s not an exaggeration to say that Pilates has changed my life. When I say Pilates “works,” what I mean is that if you’re diligent and consistent, you really do see improvement. And, it’s measurable. For eight months I came to the studio for a combination of private lessons and work on the mat, Reformer, Tower, various chairs and barrels—an apparatus designed to help students control their muscle movements and enhance their strength, endurance and flexibility through resistance and balance. (An instructor is there to demonstrate, as well as guide, encourage and spot students at all times.) After numerous private appointments and sessions on the Reformer, on which you mostly lie down and do leg and core work, and the Tower, which is largely based on a pulley system, I was ready for the all-important 30-Session Special, a series of thirty 60-minute classes within a 10-week period. It’s a big time commitment, but I was ready to test myself and the program. Pilates requires full attention to do it right—there are lots of moving parts. Bend your elbows just so, pull your belly button to your spine, lift your shoulders off the mat, but don’t let them rise up to your ears, flex your foot. Sometimes I like to close my eyes while I do Pilates so I can shut out the visual noise and just concentrate on what the instructor is saying. Meghan agreed it would be worth investigating my progress formally, which she has done in the past for others targeting improvements. Also, as a representative client—60-years old, relatively healthy, relatively fit, active daily, busy, always anxious to lose five pounds, open to self-improvement—there is value in knowing how I fit Pilates into an already busy life. Because we knew I was going to write about my experience and wanted some hard numbers, Meghan invited physical therapist Karen Arciero, also at Skidmore, to measure my flexibility, strength and posture as demonstrated in a variety of exercises at the outset of the 10 weeks, at the midpoint and at the end. I had, for instance, never done a
right side plank in my life before this program, and the first time I tried, I lasted for only one second; after five weeks, I could do it for 17 seconds; after 10 weeks, for 30. Also specifically, my hamstring flexibility increased three percent on the right and seven percent on the left; and my posture improved noticeably in photographs—though there is still a tilt that needs correction. I have noticed that as my quadriceps get stronger, there’s less pain in my knees. These are definitely good trends. Also a good trend is my enhanced awareness of my body’s alignment, my deliberate efforts to use my muscles more efficiently and effectively and my increased eagerness for getting and staying in shape. As a side effect, I also have become more careful of what I eat, though there is no conversation in the sessions about weight loss or control. You just start caring more. Of course, nothing’s perfect; I still want to do smoother sit-ups, learn more about regulating my breathing and work on my arm and lower-abdominal strength. But, it’s fair to say that Pilates has changed my outlook on what it’s possible for me to do. My core needs work—so I’m in the right place, because Pilates is all about building up what is called “the powerhouse,” that centerpiece of your body from which all other energy flows. And I’m not the only one who feels this way. Elaine Alfert has been attending Pilates sessions at Reform for three years. She said to me, “I have been exercising for the past 30 years, I have done aerobic classes, step classes, body sculpting, elliptical cross-trainers,
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treadmills, bikes, spinning classes and fast walking for miles. None of this compares to Pilates. Pilates has given me real strength and flexibility, I can do things I never thought possible. It not only strengthens my body, but gives me inner peace and empowerment. There is no limit. Each week I can do more than the week before. I am continuously challenging myself and always seem to meet that challenge and go deeper and deeper into my core. My instructors at Reform Pilates are the best! The exhaustion I feel after each hour is exhilarating. I am leaner and stronger. I walk taller and more gracefully. I love the way Pilates makes me feel.” You can’t beat that. What Elaine says about being able to do more every week is a good point. Pilates doesn’t get easier, it gets more challenging. That’s because as you improve and get stronger, the instructor demands more. It’s subtle, but motivating. As goals are attained and reset, energy spikes. I can’t say I’ve ever felt depleted after a session, no matter how hard. As Meghan says, “You can always go up a notch.” And, in a few days, I am craving more Pilates. (The studio is open seven days-a-week.) It makes sense that the 30 sessions have to be completed in 10 weeks, because you get into a rhythm that needs to be maintained to get the most out of it. Now, if I haven’t been in class for a couple of weeks, I can feel both the absence of motion and the relief of being back in motion. I always afraid I’ll have to start from scratch, but I have learned I have muscle memory. Still, it’s important to keep it up. Meghan’s commitment to the practice is thorough. When she
started the business she worked 12-hour days, seven days-a-week as the popularity of the program burgeoned. Then she started hiring instructors, which allowed her to get a break and focus on growing the business, serve more clients and, importantly, offer clients a choice of instructors. Initially, it was all investment—she was making just enough money to pay the rent and buy gas, but she thought it was “important to swing it, so I could bring Pilates to the most people.” Meanwhile, Meghan was continuing her own education, observing, taking lessons and practicing teaching to become certified through Romana’s Pilates in New York City. Today, she has logged more than 10,000 hours of teaching experience. Truly, all the instructors are awesome and it’s a good idea to work with several. Each one notices a different subtlety of the way a student is moving. One told me I wasn’t pulling my navel to my spine tightly enough, another corrected the position of my shoulders and another showed me how to keep my neck from getting tired. The instructors have different personalities and different teaching styles, but their laser-focus is on whole-person outcomes. A fresh pair of eyes might detect an area that needs more or a different kind of work. If you see several instructors, nothing slips by unnoticed, and there are no loopholes I love that there’s no “pain-gain” philosophy. You feel yourself working, but if you need to stop, you stop. Sure, you can do “one more,” but the quantity of reps is never as important as the quality. I do worry I will never stop pulling my shoulders up. It feels so much better when I don’t—but so much to remember: shoulders
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down. Chin to chest. Flex feet. Pull your belly button to your spine. When I first started Pilates, I think I was coasting because the harder I work, the harder it gets. No, that sounds wrong. What I mean is that I am escalating the challenges I am willing to take on and so it actually gets more strenuous. Mary Sacks in Schuylerville echoes some of what I think. She said to me, “I started Pilates for a few reasons: chronic neck pain, wanting to feel stronger and more fit in my mid-40s, to get in shape. I also didn’t realize it when I started, but I credit Pilates with helping with my plantar fasciitis and heel spur. I was recovering from a bad bout of it in both feet, and it didn’t really disappear until I started Pilates. Having a stronger core and legs helped with the way I carry myself. I feel stronger and fitter now than I did in my 20s. With the Pilates, occasional cardio and yoga and cutting out most desserts and snacking, I’ve lost 15 pounds. I am amazed with the changes in my body. I didn’t specifically focus on losing much weight—I really just wanted to feel better. But Pilates has slimmed everything and toned it. My posture is better. I feel so much stronger. I can lift furniture around the house and manage tasks around my farm more easily. Having a strong core really does make a huge difference in one’s day-to-day life. I generally do it two or three times per week, classes supplemented by the occasional lesson. Tower is my favorite. I absolutely love it. Pilates is the only exercise that I have been this dedicated to in my life.” A word about Meghan: She’s tough, but a session with her is a leap toward progress. She always thinks of an exercise I haven’t done. It can be a little intimidating at the outset, realizing you’ll saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
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never, ever know it all, but once you’ve learned to inhale and exhale, keep your knees soft, lift your thighs up and put every limb and organ to work for the same cause—it’s actually a relief. Nobody is intent on being perfect, but on being ever better. The private lessons really are important as a basis for the rest. I try to do a private, a Tower and a Reformer every week, though recently Meghan has introduced 30-minute mat classes, perfect for a lunch break, and I find that’s becoming a go-to class for me. When you go regularly, you develop a sense of camaraderie with others who are on a like schedule. The truth is, sometimes I can only make it in once or twice; some weeks I might get in there four times. I love Tower on Wednesdays after work, where the instructor accepts us at whatever level we are and guides us, as a group and individually, so it’s possible to evaluate your own progress, build on your own perceptions of your strength as well as the instructor’s of you. Nobody has said it better than Jennifer Armstrong, of Saratoga Springs, a devotee par excellence: “I started Pilates when I got my tax refund and thought—what’s the best thing to do with this money? With interest rates so low it wasn’t exactly crying out to be invested or saved, and there wasn’t anything I wanted to buy, so I decided the best use of it was to invest in my health. I bought a 30-session package and almost immediately saw and felt results. This is the only exercise program I have ever enjoyed. You can count me among the faithful believers. I’m not the sort of person who enjoys typical heart-rate targeting workouts: I don’t like jumping and running and hopping and getting sweaty and red in the face with someone else’s idea of motivational music and an instructor shouting into a headset. What Pilates does is very sneaky—it seems low-key, but for the first two weeks of my lessons
I needed a nap afterward because every single muscle in my body had been activated. I now work harder in my Pilates workouts than I ever worked in any gym. There’s always cool jazz on the stereo, and the studio is beautiful and serene—qualities you don’t find in most work-out places! I have worked with all of the instructors one-to-one, and although each brings something different to her style of instruction, they are all excellent and professional. Pilates has improved my balance, strength and coordination. I have better posture, my clothes fit better, and people compliment the visible change in me. Feeling better and stronger, I am more motivated to keep fit with more aerobic activities like hiking or biking. In short, the first 30-session special was the best investment I have ever made, and I have been taking Pilates three times a week ever since.” And, no one is braver than Phyllis Aldrich, who started Pilates while recuperating from a kidney transplant after her daughter (who had just opened her own Pilates studio in New Haven, Conn.), recommended Meghan’s studio. “The exercises were an eye opener,” she said. “Within four weeks, I began to stand up straighter, I felt the space begin to open in my scrunched up backbone, and my legs began to gain strength. I especially loved the feeling of having more space in my back-bones, and of breathing more deeply. I aimed for twice a week private lessons where I received helpful detailed feedback and suggestions for tweaking small muscles I never knew existed. Over a few weeks, my friends began to notice new vigor in my step and my regained posture. When I drove, I found I would want to sit up straight, and suck in my belly and back muscles. Suddenly my core felt like a real force. I felt healthier. Reform Pilates helped me overcome quickly the fear
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that my un-taut, non-dancer’s body did not belong. And yes, the image of the strange-looking machines was quite threatening. One of the best aspects of the experience is that the instructors are keenly sensitive to emergence of a client’s pain: Meghan would say, ‘If it hurts, we don’t do it.’ What a relief not to worry that I might injure myself in the quest for fitness, which had happened 10 years earlier at a gym. In the years of Pilates, although I have had to stop for periods of illness, I always looked forward to resuming the work, and find its almost infinite variety of specific exercises to be a source of continuing rewarding challenge. I urge all my friends to give this a try. No matter what kind of muscle problems, I think that Pilates experience can help. My husband of 84 years old has been doing it for one and a half years and feels 10 years younger. And stands up straighter.” Now, when I go to Pilates, I get myself into a “C-curve,” wrapped around an imaginary ball, then stack my spine up against an imaginary wall to align it. I breathe better, I move better, I think more clearly after a class. The next time, I start my work from a deep yearning to reach further when I twist toward the window, stretch more gracefully toward the mirror, rest center. I feel my energy flow from head to toe and back again and aim toward an inner infinity as deep and wide as the outer world a body invigorated by Pilates can inhabit. I understand why Meghan chose to emphasize that the exercises lead to “reform.” I curve and stretch, ready for the next deep breath.
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ExpectationS Taking Your Relationships from Mediocre to Spectacular By Meghan D. Lemery, LCSW-R
n a recent conversation with a group of girlfriends, we were contemplating the differences between men and women and how stressful and challenging romantic relationships can be. One of the conclusions we came to was the importance of clear expectations in your relationships. Have you ever noticed that when you’re speaking with a close friend, it’s easy to listen to them with acceptance and a nonjudgmental attitude? You give them all the space they need to sort out the problem and you are able to provide them with support and compassion. Why is it in our romantic relationships we tend to lose this ability to simply be a supportive presence to our partner? Instead we tend to become anxious, judgmental and preachy in the advice we give to our partners. It all comes down to expectations. An expectation is defined as a: requirement, demand, want, wish, insistence, reliance. In order for any of our relationships to be successful and flow smoothly, we have to be willing to do the homework of knowing what we want and being clear about our expectations. Most of us assume that our spouse or partner has a secret super power that enables them to anticipate every need and want; therefore we never have to worry about being clear in our communication styles. This, dear hearts, is a very dysfunctional habit and assumption to make. The fact is you and you alone are responsible for figuring out what you need to be happy. No one person can take on that burden for you. In a friendship, the expectation is clear which is why it is so much easier to offer support to your friends than your spouse. The expectation with a friend is support, listening, giving advice
and guidance when asked, and a certain amount of space to sort things out. In romantic relationships expectations change because of the level of responsibility and accountability that comes with an intimate relationship. Have you ever had your partner come to you with a recurring problem and you feel your anxiety level hit the roof? Their inability to effectively handle a difficult situation and move forward has made you feel frustrated, judgmental and distant. The more they talk about their job issues or drama with a particular friend the more you feel yourself want to scream and put bamboo shoots under your nails for fun. We lose our ability to be neutral and we begin to make our partner’s issues our own. Our own fear and anxiety begins to take over and we feel upset that our partners can’t figure it out; or even more anxiety provoking, we wonder how their issue will affect our relationship and lifestyle. As soon as the anxiety makes its presence known in your heart, you can be sure you stopped being a neutral presence and have made the issue at hand about you. When this happens, ask yourself, “What is my expectation of this person in this moment?” This awareness and question makes us stop, take a step back and evaluate whether we have an agenda in the conversation. For example, if you come home from a long day at work ready to relax and unwind and your spouse walks in the door frazzled and upset about a situation at work, this is a very important time to acknowledge and honor your expectation. Instead of listening to your spouse feeling resentful about not enjoying
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your evening, communicate your expectation clearly. “I know this situation is so upsetting to you and I want to be offering you all the support you need, right now I just need some time to refuel and unwind. Can we talk about this in the morning when we are both rested and refreshed? I know if we discuss this now you will not have my full attention.” This way of communicating acknowledges the stressful situation your spouse is in, but also communicates the clear expectation you have for the evening. If you are having difficulty in your marriage or relationship, take a step back and evaluate your expectations. Most confusion and tension in a relationship can be cleared up quickly simply by acknowledging your expectation of the other person. When we fail to acknowledge and honor the expectations we have of others, it’s like walking through a thick forest without a map hoping we will stumble upon a magical waterfall. We need clear direction and guidance to make it to our destinations—clear expectations are the map to help you have a fantastic relationship, not a mediocre one. Most people that are unhappy in their relationships are usually lazy about communicating clearly. Rather than sitting down to have a brutally honest discussion and plan to get back on track, some couples let the anger and distance build until it seems too far gone to make it back. Don’t be lazy about improving your relationships. Sort out what you need from your partner and be clear about your expectations of them. Couples don’t fall apart overnight—rather, a couple on their way to splitting up has had years of unclear, passive communication that has led to a relationship full of resentment and tension. We must be willing to work on the quality of our intimate relationships daily. The daily maintenance is what takes you from mediocre to awesome. Any couple that feels connected and has fun together will tell you they work on things daily and are very clear with one another about their expectations. Don’t keep walking blindly avoiding the issues in your relationship. Take a step back, pay attention to your needs and communicate with honesty and clarity. Simply identifying and acknowledging your expectations in the relationship takes the guesswork out and creates a healthy emotional environment for clear communication. If you feel that you and your spouse are drifting further and futher apart, get the help you need to get back on track. Working with a third party can help you both be clear about what you need and want from one another. Don’t settle for a mediocre relationship, wake up and do the work it takes to create the love you want! Wishing you healthy love today and always! Meghan Lemery is a psychotherapist practicing in Glens Falls and Saratoga Springs, New York. She is also the author of “Please Pass the Barbie Shoes,” which can be ordered through meghanlemery. com. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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the story of the House Built
and the Backwards Disappearing Mayor Story by Hollis Palmer Photographs courtesy of Stock Studios Photography
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nside the home at 595 Broadway, anyone who watches Turner Classic Movies might get the feeling that they had stumbled onto the set of a 1920s film. Built in 1921, the grace and elegance of the house has been maintained through the years to such a degree that one can imagine Jean Harlow sitting on the couch and Vincent Price sipping a glass of scotch while leaning against the mantel of the marble fireplace. The tale of the man that had the house built matches the storyline of even the best movie of the time. The first clue that there is something unusual with the home is detected when entering the door on the side of the home facing the street. The open staircase, so typical of the grand houses of Saratoga, does not face Broadway. The house was built for Harry Pettee, who was the major stockholder and the chief executive of one of the carbonic gas companies that flourished in Saratoga at the turn of the last century. Pettee’s company had been pumping the water south of the village, (Saratoga was a village until 1915) extracting and bottling the carbon dioxide and sending the bottled gas to New York City. There, bottling companies added the gas to the city’s water to make soda. Unfortunately, the pumping of the springs in Saratoga lowered the water table, causing the natural springs throughout the city to go dry. Without the springs, the city lost one of its precious
resources. Out of desperation, the city used the power of eminent domain to take Pettee’s property. That property is now a portion of the Spa State Park. With the money from the sale of the Saratoga property, Pettee invested in carbonic springs in other communities around the country. He also bought the house now known as Union Gables. Despite having contributed to the downfall of the city’s economy, Pettee was popular enough to be elected the second mayor of Saratoga. As mayor, Pettee was criticized for the amount of time he spent at his winter home in Palm Beach. Even as Harry Pettee was building the Broadway house he probably understood that his tenure within its walls would be limited. What he knew, but did not share with anyone else, was that he was planning to disappear. * * * The story of Harry Pettee is one in which lore has replaced the truth. It is said that he was the mayor of the city who embezzled the city’s money and disappeared—it’s a great story but simply not true. The truth is that Pettee was no longer the mayor when the house was under construction; however, he was in the process of embezzling money from his own company. Perhaps because
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many of the stockholders were prominent citizens of Saratoga, it felt like he stole the city’s money. The story broke in May 1923 when the local newspaper reported that Pettee had disappeared with an estimated $320,000 (a sizable amount in 1923.) [Editor’s note: Adjusted for inflation in 2013, the sum would be approximately $4,296,495.] His salary at the time, as a CEO, was $25,000 per year. The next day the story was in the New York Times and within days the story of the missing executive who absconded with his company’s money was covered in newspapers across the country. When Pettee disappeared, he left a note saying that he was boarding a European bound ship and was going to jump overboard. The police investigated every option. Even though Pettee lacked a passport, they checked with the various cruise lines. They also checked with the various water plants he operated across the country. They even spent several days following his mistress. Pettee simply could not be found. It appears his wife was the only one to believe the suicide note—and it was probably wishful thinking on her part. For years there would be Pettee sightings from places such as New Orleans, San Francisco and New York City. With each sighting, detectives would be sent to investigate. Although Pettee was never officially seen again, the detectives did have the opportunity to travel at the expense of the people.
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* * * It is from Wiswall Alley that the most unique aspect of the house can be seen. Looking over the stone fence that lines the alley, one can see four grand columns and a two story porch—obviously designed to be the front of the house. What cannot be seen from the street is the grand stairway which greets guests who enter through the door between the pillars. With what was originally the sun porch on the north side, it is obvious the house was built backwards! The only logical explanation for the setup is Pettee’s questionable state of mind. Out of anger he arranged the house so that everyone who rang the bell on Broadway came to the servants’ entrance. Pettee would never be seen again; however, his wife, Agatha, would maintain the house as her residence until her death in November 1933. Her obituary appeared on the same page as a story about the racially charged Scottsboro boys’ trial in Alabama and expectations about the Roosevelt Presidency. In Mrs. Pettee’s obituary she is referred to as “. . . a woman of much charm and pleasant social qualities.” More importantly, “she bore her painful illness and adversities with courageous spirit,” an obvious reminder of what happened with her husband. Since the Pettees had no children, the house was left to Mrs.
Pettee’s niece, Agatha Quintana, who had cared for Mrs. Pettee as her health failed. Originally from Brooklyn, Miss Quintana would marry a member of one of the most prominent families in Saratoga. Unlike some of the other houses in this series, this house was never cut up into apartments or went through a period of serious decline. Perhaps being built as a scandal brewed was enough trauma for the property. Current owners, Kerin Colbert and Jera Meren, consider themselves fortunate to live in a gracious home where they can take advantage of Pettee’s porches, both of which are on the “back” of the house. The house was featured on the show “If Walls Could Talk” on HGTV. Part of the show focused on a portion of the basement floor which was left wooden instead of cement. The theme of the show was the question of if it was under that section of the basement floor that Pettee had hidden the money. On the show the floor was removed—the money was not there; however, the studs were spaced perfectly to hide bottles of liquor that had been made illegal by the Volstead Act (also known as the National Prohibition Act.) Books by Hollis Palmer are available at Crafters’ Gallery and The Saratoga Springs History Museum.
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Jill Sweet: “Whiskers and Tales” By Helen Susan Edelman
hen Jill Sweet was publishing academic papers, she used to say, “Nobody cared. Nobody reads them, except maybe your mother and a few colleagues. But, when I started writing a column about pets for Saratoga TODAY, people would come right up to me in the grocery store and talk about their cats and dogs. It was great.” An anthropology professor at Skidmore College for 25 years before she retired, Sweet left her job in 2007 when she became wheelchair-bound after breaking a hip. The hip healed, but Sweet, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis 35 years ago, felt the increasing medical complications were getting in the way of her effective teaching about the culture of Pueblo Indians. Retired but not retiring, off campus, Sweet needed something to do. She was drawn to volunteering at the Saratoga County Animal Shelter, where, she recalls, “I saw so many heartbreaking situations of dogs being brought there by people who called them “bad.” But, people have to understand, dogs are social animals, if you just put them out in the yard by themselves or leave them alone at home all day, they’re going to act out. And then the owner gets angry and yells and leaves them at the shelter.” As a witness to that, Sweet felt compelled to write about pets and their people for Saratoga TODAY. The topics ranged from fun, uplifting anecdotes to deeply serious and meticulously researched lay advice. Additionally, newspaper publisher Chad Beatty - a doting dog owner himself - agreed to run a photo with the article of a pet needing adoption to call attention to the shelter. The experience opened Sweet and her husband, Saratoga Springs native Steven Rosenbach, a retired security guard from Skidmore, to the idea of bringing pets into their lives, she recalls, “into 24/7 relationships.”
Some people believe when one door closes, another opens, and Sweet is one who subscribes to that theory. She says, “The positive thing is that if I hadn’t had to be in a wheelchair, I wouldn’t have gotten involved with Canine Companions for Independence, 11: d Tales,” Feb. 4, 20 From “Whiskers an in Spanish cause it means ‘life’ be da Vi r he ed m “I na life after I e a new approach to and she brought m .S. When singly affected by M had become increa ber how life with me I remem I think back on her would sit class with me. She Vida would come to e would sh t red. At some poin beside me as I lectu d close her chin on her paws an slide down, rest her softly snore. er she would start to eyes. A little bit lat d some students to laugh an e th e us ca d ul wo This they also er to each other that would quietly whisp a not-so-subtle would take this as felt like napping. I Sometimes, was getting boring. hint that the lecture t a groan da would just let ou Vi e, or sn an th er rath Once class d break up the class. and that also woul ound me students crowded ar was over and a few ey did not nment or a point th to ask about an assig quietly leave ading, Vida would re e th in d an rst de un uld move her students. She wo the room with the ot er to the ov of the building and with the crowd out hamburgers ng the smell of the dining hall, followi s hungry.” Labs, she was alway t os m ke Li g. in ok co
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and wouldn’t have gotten my two wonderful service dogs, Vida and Moses.” Sweet is clearly sweet on her pets (there are also two cats— Sully and Magic), unconditionally loving, but not fooled—she also sees their foibles, but it seems to make her love them more. She is also firm and clear with her service dogs, because they are working. (It is important to acknowledge that Vida has passed on and Moses solely is in the service role.) Moses, for example, knows 46 oneword commands. When he ignores one, he gets an uncomfortable tug on his prong collar; when he obeys, she heaps him with praise. She notes, “When Moses is not working, which he knows is when he’s not wearing his prong collar and vest, he plays like any other dog. He loves to play fetch with a ball or stick. Nevertheless, he seems to get pleasure from working as well. It’s almost as if he needs a job and the praise it brings him when he gets things right.” People are drawn to him. “If they approach and want to touch him, they need to ask,” Sweet emphasizes. “Sometimes he can be interrupted and sometimes he can’t – but it’s important to get permission before you touch another person’s dog, especially a working dog.” When it’s possible and appropriate for Moses to interact and help his owner to make new friends, Sweet is pleased. “Sometimes this cage I’m in puts people off,” she says, referring to the wheelchair. “The dog makes the contact more human.” Sweet has come a long way. A former dancer and runner, sitting in a wheelchair all the time had the potential to be
depressing, but Sweet says, “There’s no point wasting energy on those kinds of emotions.” Sweet’s essays for Saratoga TODAY that now comprise “Whiskers and Tales” were cathartic for her to write and are also useful, brimming with information about everything from grooming to the psychosocial benefits of pet ownership. Sometimes she wrote articles in one of her pet’s voices. ”I drive a van with hand controls, with Moses in the back seat, and we go for long walks around the neighborhood, at the state park or the QuadGraphics Industrial Park,” she says. “We take road trips to Maine and there’s always a place to stay with Moses. It’s actually illegal for a place to deny entry to a service dog.” The newspaper column writing days are behind Sweet, who is working on a novel from her home office, a sunny room on the south side of her Geyser Crest home. “It’s a beautiful private place,” Sweet describes it. “From my window I can see birds. I write and I think. I meditate.” Sometimes she thinks about the old days, in 1982, when the California native first arrived at Skidmore on a motorcycle, wearing leather and certain she could never be happy east of the Rockies. “But I stayed,” she says. “It’s a life of love and joy.” Proceeds of the sale of “Whiskers and Tales” benefit Friends of the Saratoga County Animal Shelter in Ballston Spa, Homes For Orphaned Pets Exit (HOPE) and the Estherville Animal Sanctuary.
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Children’s Academy Trekking USA
CHILDREN’S ACADEMY • MALTA, NY
“A Summer Trip Across the United States” Trekking USA is a 10 week curricular program designed to cover American history and geography in a fun and exciting way. Each week will focus on 2 or more states as campers travel across the US and learn cool & interesting facts about them. Activities will be planned based on the unique history and sights of each state. The journey will begin right here in the Northeast and weave its way across the US ending up on the West coast. From making pizzas to having a BBQ then line dancing, kids will have a blast right here at home without the putting in the actual “mileage.” While trekking North to South, East to West campers will explore what makes each state so special. Some of the states covered will be New York, Florida, Texas, North Dakota, California, Alaska and Hawaii. Learning each state’s flag, official flower, and even how to read a map is all part of this fun-filled curriculum. There will be a few local field trips, which are planned and designed to coincide with the theme. So get the kids ready for a luau and don’t be surprised if your little campers come home and ask you to make them some poi!
The Children’s Academy of Malta provides faith-based education and care services to the children of the Capital Region. We accept children from six weeks to 12 years of age, and with 15+ years of experience, you can be assured that your child will be left in knowledgeable and caring hands.
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Registrat March 4 March 18
at the Recr (518) 587-3 www.Sarato
located at the Saratoga Springs Recreation Center, is NYSDOH licensed full day summer camp for children ages 5–12. Our camp offers weekly field trips, creative recreational and educational programs, arts & crafts, weekly swimming, and themed weeks. Camp activities are designed to promote fun and fitness while providing opportunities for campers to grow. Last seasons favorites: The Saratoga County Fair, The Fun Spot, Strike Zone, Tri-City Valley Cats and of course our weekly visits to the Peerless Pool will all be a part of our 2013 field trip line-up. Check our website for a complete schedule of all our field trips. The 2013 Summer Camp runs Monday through Friday from 8:45 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. starting July 1, and goes through August 16. Parents love the convenience of our before and after care program. Children who are registered may be dropped off at 7:30 a.m. and then picked up as late as 6:00 p.m. Registration is on a first come, first served basis so please don’t wait. Camp registration forms are available at www.saratoga-springs.org or can be picked up at the Recreation Center. If you have any questions, please call us at 518-587-3550 ext. 2300 or email us at RecReservations@saratoga-springs. org. See you this summer! saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
Camp Saradac, located summer camp for child REGISTRATION BEGINS: tional and educational March 4 - City Residents ties are designed to pr Last season’s favorites March 18 - Non City Residents of course our weekly v Saratoga Springsour website for a comp
Recreation Center 518-587-3550 ext. 2300 www.Saratoga-Springs.org
Saratoga Springs Rec 15 Vanderbilt Ave, Sa (518) 587-3550 ext. 2 RecReservations@sar Saratoga Springs Recreaton Center 15 Vanderbilt Ave., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 518-587-3550 ext. 2300 RecReservation@saratoga-springs.org
Find us on F Saratoga Sp Find us on Facebook!
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Skidmore College offers a variety of programs for children of all ages during the summer months. Camp Northwoods Skidmore’s day camp for children entering grades 1–6, offers an exciting program of sports, cultural arts, nature study and relaxed play. Our goal is
SUMMER AT SKIDMORE • SARATOGA, NY
to provide a variety of fun activities that happily challenge the imagination, intellect, and body. The
Skidmore College also offers a wide array of Sports
camp’s home base is Falstaff’s Pavilion on the
Camps from June through August for children of all
Skidmore College campus, but campers frequent
ages. Choose from baseball, lacrosse, swimming,
the Williamson Sports Center, Schick Art Gallery,
basketball, tennis, soccer, volleyball and field
Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, and Zankel
hockey. Children learn the concept of teamwork
Music Center. The daily enrichment activities led by
while acquiring the necessary skills for his or her
the qualified staff are supplemented by weekly field
sport of choice. Adults, novice or experienced, can
trips to recreational and historical sites, and visits
participate in a rowing program offered throughout
by special guests. Children will also enjoy arts and
the spring, summer and fall at the Boat House
located on beautiful Fish Creek. All other programs
games, hiking, and
are held on the Skidmore Campus at the Sports and
daily swim time.
Recreation Center and/or the adjacent fields.
One and twoweek sessions are
For more information, or to register online visit www.
available from June
skidmore.edu/summer or call the Office of the Dean
of Special Programs at (518) 580-5596.
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Wilton Recreation offers a full-day summer camp
This year’s scheduled field trips include: Million
program for children entering grades one through
Dollar Beach in Lake George, Saratoga County
9. With available pre-camp and post-camp care,
Fair, bowling, white water rafting, and at least two
working parents can ensure their children are having
swimming days per week at nearby pools and
fun in a safe environment before and after the camp’s
regular hours, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Parents who register their children for before and/or after camp care can
The 2013 Summer Camp opens on June 25 and runs
drop off their registered campers after 8 a.m. and
until August 9. Registration begins March 11 at Gavin
can pick them up until 5:30 p.m. Busing is available
Park, 10 Lewis Drive, Saratoga Springs, New York,
for Wilton residents who register for regular camp
and closes June 12. As there are only 300 spaces
hours. This camp offers a full schedule of daily
available, be sure to mark your calendar! Camp
onsite activities, themed events, and exciting trips
registration forms are available at www.townofwilton.
for those campers registered for off-site adventures.
com/gavin-park/ or can be picked up at the park
Daily onsite activities include arts and crafts, sports,
office, weekdays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Any questions,
playground fun, and other organized group games.
please call (518) 584-9455.
WILTON RECREATION SUMMER DAY CAMP • WILTON, NY
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SARATOGA INDEPENDENT SCHOOL • SARATOGA, NY
Saratoga Independent School Anticipation for summer camp at Saratoga
talented adults who are a part of our school faculty.
Independent School is heating up! Conveniently
Wrap-around care and extended day programs will
located on Lake Avenue in Saratoga Springs, the
be offered daily.
Saratoga Independent School is situated on 60 beautiful acres including sports fields, wooded trails,
In the full day program, kids will take part in a
gardens, playgrounds, and a 12,000 square foot
diverse program featuring sports, arts, nature, music
modern school building, built in 2004.
and drama. Enrichment classes will also be available during the program day, and extended day coverage
Registration for summer programs will begin on
is available. Each week will feature a different
Monday, February 25. This summer we will be
exciting theme and the daily activities will include
offering our weekly half day program to children
community and character building components. Join
aged 4–6 and full day program for kids aged
us this summer at Saratoga Independent School! For
7–12! Our highly skilled and experienced team is
more information, please visit www.siskids.org
ready to provide an unforgettable experience for your child. In the half day program, kids will enjoy weekly themed activities centered on the environment, games, science and art. This program is geared for our youngest campers and is led by caring and
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Camp Chingachgook DAY CAMP FUN!
OUR PREMIER OVERNIGHT CAMP
From Albany to Greene County, all Capital District
Camp Chingachgook on Lake George offers a
YMCA branches offer fun summer camp options.
one-of-a-kind overnight camp experience for your
Children 3 to 16 will find something fun to do, from
child. Located on the shores of Lake George in
swimming lessons to play time in the GaGa pit!
the heart of the Adirondack Mountains, Camp
Best of all, YMCA programs focus on fun activities
Chingachgook’s dedicated, top-notch staff
that build your child’s confidence and self-esteem,
and modern yet rustic facilities offer outdoor
while teaching your child the value of teamwork and
experiences to last a lifetime.
playing well with others. You child will love spending time with old friends and making new friends!
NEW FOR 2013
Your child will love our day camp (for kids 5–10), overnight camp (for kids 7–15), our variety of
CAMP CHINGACHGOOK • LAKE GEORGE, NY
The Capital District YMCA Provides Safe, Affordable Summer Camp for Your Child!
adventure trip programs (for kids 11 and older),
Online registration! Visit www.CDYMCA.org today.
and our Counselor-in-Training (CIT) program (for 16
Sibling discounts! Free before and after-camp care.
Membership is not required. All are welcome! Call today for details. (518) 869.3500. Visit us online at www.CDYMCA.org.
OUR PREMIER DAY CAMP Located just off Route 155 in Guilderland, YMCA Adventure Camp (formerly Camp Nassau) is our premier regional day camp, with an out-door pool, a pond with paddle boats, a zip line, a rock wall, a covered pavilion, and much more! We have convenient bus routes ready to pick up and drop off your child. FREE TOURS! Visit www.CDYMCA.org today for our tour schedule, or call 456.3634.
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NORTH COUNTRY HORSES • GANSEVOORT, NY
North Country Horses Horses, Horses, Horses! That’s what you get at North Country Horses Summer Horsemanship Camp. horses from the first feeding in the morning until it’s time to go home in the afternoon. Campers will enjoy riding time, in both group and individual lessons. They are introduced to all aspects of horse
North Country Horses offers a full day summer camp program for children and young adults 6–16 years of age. Pre and post camp care is available for working parents to ensure that children are in a safe and fun filled environment before and/or after the camp’s regular 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. hours. The focus is on
care and handling, and will participate in many other horse related activities and crafts. North County Horse Campers need to be prepared to have fun! Our 2013 camp dates are the weeks of July 8–12, July 15–19, July 22–26, July 29–August 2, August 5–9, August 12–16 and August 19–23. Sign up early! Spots are limited and filling quickly. More information is available by emailing NorthCountryHorse@Yahoo.com or calling/ texting North Country Horses at (518) 441-5959.
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Martial Arts and The Soul Center A+ AfterSchool and Summer Camp Program is a year-round child care solution that provides a positive, structured environment for children after school and during the day in the summer. During the school year, we pick children up directly from the local elementary and middle schools with our 30 passenger bus and 15 passenger van. We provide an hour lesson each day that starts with our “Mat Chat,” a ten minute character education lesson, followed by a full 50 minute martial arts class. Once our warm-ups and stretching are completed, we split our class into 2 rooms, based on age and rank, so that students get a more individualized lesson. Once class ends at 5 p.m., parents have a 30-40 minute window to pick up their children while children have the opportunity after class to get their homework started. During the summer, children get all the benefits of our A+ Program, but on a grander scale. We offer eight weeks of full day camps (As well as Winter and Spring Break) and have no minimum or maximum number of days per week or number of weeks that a student can attend. Each week of camp, we have a curriculum of character education lessons, fun games, a Recreation Room with Ping Pong, Fooseball, Air Hockey and more and a one hour martial arts class 4 days a week. We watch a movie in the afternoons twice a week with our high def. projector, have a video game/recreation morning on Fridays and take all our campers on an educational outing on Wednesdays to local museums and a fun and exciting outing every Friday. We also try to find time every couple of weeks to go swimming at the State Park.
memories that will last a lifetime. For many, our summer camps are a wonderful introduction to the martial arts. One of our goals from our inception was to create a center for the development of the mind, body and spirit. Our goals have become a reality in 2013 with the start of The Soul Center: A Center for Fitness, Wellness, Sports and Arts under one roof!!! The Soul Center is now home not only to Cutting Edge Martial Arts, but also Slugger’s Den, an indoor baseball training facility, and CAMP: The Capital Area Music Project, a music studio for group music lessons. We will be offering Piano, Voice, Guitar and Percussion to start. For the first time, campers can opt to add baseball and/or music lessons to their camps this summer!!! For more information visit www.SaratogaMartial Arts.com and www.SoulCenterSaratoga.com or call (518) 587-5501.
CUTTING EDGE MATRIAL ARTS • SARATOGA, NY
Our average campsize is 25–40 students, and we have three full time staff working with our campers. Our goal is to provide a family-friendly and fun environment that feels like a home away from home. Our students have fun learning skills that can be used every day of their lives, and we try to provide saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
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SARATOGA CHILDREN’S THEATRE • SARATOGA, NY
Saratoga Children’s Theatre For kids who have a passion for performing arts, Saratoga Children’s Theatre summer camp is a dream come true. Saratoga Children’s Theatre offers performance camps for ages 4–18 years. At Saratoga Children’s Theatre we hire dedicated professionals that will enhance your child’s awareness for the arts while enjoying a great summer camp experience. Our NEW RISING STARS camp will be for the 4–6 year old children. These stars-to-be will learn to explore their creativity through music, storytelling, movement, and arts and crafts. Both fun and educational, we have created our Rising Stars program to provide a warm and nurturing environment, giving campers the opportunity to gain a wonderful introduction to the theatrical arts. Camps are one week 9am-12noon Directed by Kristyn Knapp. Rising Stars FEE $120 SCT KIDS Program (7–11 years) will perform Annie KIDS, Aristocats KIDS, Year with Frog and Toad KIDS and Aladdin KIDS Campers will learn
all aspects of performance, and will have the opportunity to perform in two shows at the end of open to the public. Campers will perform stage at Clements Auditorium, Saratoga Springs. Camp hours are 9am-3pm, this is a one week program. KIDS program Directors will be Karey Trimmings and Joel Shapiro. KIDS FEE Prior to March 1 $225, After March 1 $250 SCT JUNIOR program (9-13years) will perform Alice in Wonderland Jr. Directed by Michael Lotano, Dear Edwina Jr. Directed by Erika Hebert, and Honk Jr. Directed by June Coryer. Campers will perform stage at Clements Auditorium, Saratoga Springs. Camp hours are 9am-3pm, this is a two week program packed with fun and excitement! JUNIOR FEE Prior to March 1 $450, After March 1 $475 SCT TEEN TROUPE (12–18 years) will be performing at Bernhard Theater, Skidmore College. The TEEN TROUPE will perform 4 shows of Legally Blonde and 4 shows of The Wedding Singer, both shows will be Directed by Michael Lotano, Music Directed by Matt Duclos and Choreographed by Sarah Sutliff. The TEEN TROUPE camps are three weeks, 9am–3pm TEEN TROUP FEE Prior to March 1 $695, After March 1 $745 SCT IDOL CAMP (11–18 years) One week of intense performance experience!! Work on your singing and dancing and get valuable feedback from professional staff and special guests. Musical Theatre, Pop, Rock, Jazz, Country, and Classical—all are welcome styles at this camp! Camp day is 9am–3pm, Directed by Michael Lotano IDOL FEE $225 For more information, visit www. saratogachildrens theatre.org or call (518) 580-1782.
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Gifted and Talented Resource Center has been offering Gifted and Enrichment programs for over 30 years. This summer we will be offering three camping options. Our Culinary Arts Camp, in its 6th year, offers students the opportunity to become Young Chefs and will learn professional cooking techniques and kitchen management. Among the items prepared, will be traditional homemade specialties, as well as international favorites. The course will also focus on sanitation, basic cooking methods, and having fun with food. We also support Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Day that came to Saratoga in the summer of 2012. The Culinary Camp is open to students in grades 3–12, with a special week dedicated to students in grades 9–12. The camp is hosted at the F. Donald Myers Education Centers Professional Culinary kitchens. Our Project Chinese Summer Immersion Camps are part of the Language and Cultural Research Center, which focuses on initiatives that increase the language proficiency, language diversity, and cultural awareness of the students in our component districts. Combining the fun of summer camp and enrichment of language immersion, this component is the culmination of the year’s activities. This unique opportunity is offered in Saratoga Springs for three weeks in July. (New students interested in joining Project Chinese are also invited to explore Chinese language and culture via a summer camp experience.) The camp is offered at two locations, The F. Donald Myers Center and the Ballston Spa High School.
Our STEM Academy Summer Camps offer students the opportunity to discover Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. In an effort to help build the regional talent pipeline and increase science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programming for students without breaking the bank, districts are utilizing the BOCES STEM Academy to build capacity and develop innovative, project-based STEM courses. This is a hands-on camp that offers a project-based learning activity to fully engage students in STEM programs. Course offerings range from Amazing Robotics, Wildlife Wonders, and Mad Science of the Capital District to Chemistry for Kids. The camp will be offered at two locations F. Donald Myers Center and Maple Avenue Middle School. Check our website for complete details and participating schools. For further details please contact: Kim Wegner, Instructional Support Services: Curriculum & Differentiated Instruction at (518) 581-3580 or email: kwegner@wswheboces. org Visit our website: www.wswheboces.org/ summercamp
BOCES • WASHINGTON-SARATOGA-WARREN-HAMILTON-ESSEX
The Washington-SaratogaWarren-Hamilton-Essex BOCES
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A Legacy for the Future Story by Patricia Older Photography courtesy of MarkBolles.com
Lance and Suzi Ingmire pose in their living room.
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“In committing the present Notes to press, it is not designed that they should meet the public eye. The voyage herein described, although it was long and tempestuous, is not supposed to contain anything of peculiar interest, except to those personally concerned, and to a few, perhaps, of their more immediate friends. To those who participated in the scenes here detailed—who have themselves watched the dark approaching squall, and listened to the raging gale and rushing waves—who have felt in their own breasts the alternate fears and hopes which every day and almost every hour brought along, it was thought that such a record as this might prove both interesting and useful. It is hoped, that when those interested are gathered around the warm domestic hearth, when seated at the quiet table, and when reclined on the safe tranquil bed, this memento will help increase contentment, and to awaken a spirit of gratitude to the great Preserver of life. Should this hope be realized, those who encouraged the present publication will obtain all their object, and be amply repaid.” —Notes of a Voyage From Portsmouth, Eng., in the Packet Ship President, Capt. Henry L. Champlin, in the Autumn of 1831
Simply Saratoga | Spring 2013 | 67
Ingmire Hall, the first catalyst for Lance Ingmire’s quest to uncover his family roots. Below: Silouettes of Sarah and Frederick Ingmire, circa 1831.
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or some of us, our knowledge of our family history goes only as far back as the memories of our living relatives— anecdotes of long ago ancestral family members—those who were significant, eccentric or colorful characters, their lives and their stories recounted from one generation to another. Artifacts, if they survived the dangers of time and life, were few and far between but allowed us to take those stories and weave together a fragmented fabric of our ancestral past, linking our histories with who we are today. But for Saratoga Springs resident, Lance Ingmire, his quest to uncover his family roots has resulted in not only an impressive collection of historical memorabilia, documents and artifacts that, when viewed individually are remarkable and unique, but when seen as a whole, create a rich tapestry of a family heritage that is stunning, educational and fascinating. For example, Ingmire has two framed 19th century silhouettes of his great, great, great-grandparents on his father’s side. In 1832, those fragile paper images were packed into a trunk in England, loaded onto a packet ship to voyage across an ocean, and later unpacked and hung in a home in Albany. Tie that in with a published diary Ingmire later found of that exact trip across the ocean—one of only two known copies—a trip made by the couple who posed for the silhouettes. Or the oversized portrait of one of his great, great grandfathers, (we each have eight,) riding in a horse drawn sled across a
frozen New York lake painted by the famous artist William Van Zandt in 1885. That same ancestor would later that year be the conductor of the funeral train for President Ulysses S. Grant. Then there is the 1865 photograph of a home decorated in black bunting that Ingmire owns—one of the few known photographs of the events surrounding Lincoln’s funeral—taken by another ancestral uncle who was the president’s photographer before his election into the highest office in the country. That relative was 19 when he crossed the ocean with his parents—the ones in the silhouettes. And there is so much more. Ingmire’s quest to uncover his family’s heritage all started with an innocuous black and white photograph that hung in the family home. “I know some of the catalysts in my life that created this interest,” said Ingmire, an eighth generation Saratogian. “I guess you can say I have taken it to an obsession.” That is an understatement. The photograph is of an English castle, its architectural features rising beyond a heavily landscaped garden, with newer rooms appended onto the ancient, original medieval fortress. Engraved on the frame is the name “Ingmire Hall.” “It peaked my interest,” said Ingmire. “I was fascinated as a child. I wanted to know more—I wanted to know who lived there and if I was related.”
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Civil War presentation sword given to Lance’s great-great-grandfather William F. Ingmire. Below: The original document where fellow soldiers pledged amounts to purchase the sword.
Lance’s maternal grandfather Orel Blackwood, poses in front of the Saratoga Armory. 70 | Simply Saratoga | Spring 2013 saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
An original photograph of President Abraham Lincoln’s family home following his assassination. It was photographed by Lance’s great-great-uncle Frederick Ingmire.
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Painting ofLance’s great-great-grandfather Anton Hauerwas riding across Nassau Lake in New York. Hauerwas later that year was the conductor of Ulysses S. Grant’s funeral train.
That allure with a castle half a world away would start Ingmire on a journey that would bring history to life and would connect him to some of the most important moments in our country’s history. On the living room wall of Ingmire’s home hangs those two Victorian silhouettes—a man and a woman—he has a top hat and coat, she is in a Victorian dress. Dated 1831, the images were made in England, the same year the couple, Frederick and Sarah Ingmire, along with their six children, loaded a few household possessions including those images, along with some food and water into the steerage of the packet ship, the President, and set sail for America. There, in the bowels of the ship along with 72 other passengers, farm animals and freight, they found a small space to sleep and live, their possessions and their children clustered in the darkness of the steerage. For the next 50 days as their ship sailed across the ocean, the passengers’ days and nights were filled with anxiety and fear. It was a harrowing voyage as an unprecedented number of storms plagued the tiny ship, giant angry waves washing aboard and downward into the steerage, raising fears the boat was sinking and lives about to be lost. While tales of the journey could be recounted from generation to generation, the true terror of their voyage would not be known if not for Ingmire’s quest to uncover his family history—he was able to locate one of only two known copies of a 72 | Simply Saratoga | Spring 2013 saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
rare book—Voyage From Portsmouth, Eng., in the Packet Ship President—a small diary published by 19 passengers on the same boat as his great, great grandparents. “The diary was meant just for them, not the general public” explained Ingmire. “It is a pretty remarkable story.” While he does not know for certain if his ancestors helped in the writing of the book, he does know that the feelings of fear and dismay on that unsettling journey were experienced by all. “Just think about it—they left England in October and on December 6th, arrived in New York City. They had six children with them and one of those was an infant. They passed dozens of ships abandoned or sinking along the way and lived through storms and squalls and heavy seas,” said Ingmire. “Imagine all the lives lost and how fortunate they must have felt.” After arriving in America, his ancestors settled in Albany, going on to have seven more children. Ingmire’s great, greatgrandfather, William F. Ingmire, was the first of their children born on American soil. His son, who would be Lance’s greatgrandfather, William M. Ingmire, moved to Saratoga Springs in 1892—first to Phila Street, then eventually building a family home at 22 Marion Place. That house still stands today. Ingmire points out that his family roots date even further back—two branches of his mother’s family settled in Hadley Hill in the late 1700s—one a fifth generation back great grandfather who was a former soldier in the Revolutionary War. saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
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Lance Ingmire poses with presentation sword awarded to his great-great-grandfather William F. Ingmire, who was a 1st Lieutenant in the New York Voluntary Regiment. The original children of the Ingmire family, though, are intertwined with this country’s history in fascinating ways and Ingmire has the historical artifacts that not only tie him to their individual lives, but, among others, an important New York military unit, two presidents and a famous artist. “Everything is related to my family and there is a story behind everything,” said Ingmire, who admits that the majority of the items have to be stored in special facility to ensure they do not deteriorate or succumb to the effects of the environment. Known as the family genealogist and historian, Ingmire, a self-taught researcher, said he spent “copious hours researching and looking for stuff.” Not only has he and his wife, Suzi, travelled to England twice to research his family’s history and explore Ingmire Hall, he has collected family heirlooms passed down from generation to generation, amassed one of the largest, individually-owned collections of Civil War artifacts, memorabilia and ephemera; and documented every single soldier who served in the 95th New York Volunteers. There is the Civil War sword, presented to his great, greatgrandfather, William F. Ingmire, the first American-born child of Frederick and Sarah, who was a 1st Lieutenant in the 95th.
The sword alone would be impressive, but Ingmire also has the original document signed by 28 men serving under William, each pledging a certain amount of money in order to purchase the sword at a cost of $50. The inheritance of that particular sword became another catalyst, said Ingmire, pushing him to go to the National Archives in Washington, D.C. and research the regiment. “I have made about 150 trips there,” said Ingmire. “I have photocopied every service record and pension record [of men who served in the 95th] and have those all categorized.” Collecting as much as possible on the 95th Regiment, Ingmire has acquired hundreds of pieces of ephemera, artifacts and photographs on the unit. For example, a large glass case is lined with dozens of pictures of the men who served in the regiment, another storage box holds framed pistols awarded to officers, and yet another, shoulder straps indicating a soldier’s rank. But it doesn’t stop there. Through his research, Ingmire would discover that another of the original children, Frederick W. Ingmire, and the oldest of the children to cross the Atlantic, eventually settled in Springfield, Illinois as a circuit minister. That would lead him to cross paths with the future president of this country and would link Saratoga
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An original 8x10 photograph of President Ulysses S. Grant on the porch of the Union Hotel, with Warren Leland, and two unidentified gentlemen. It is the only know photograph of Grant in Saratoga Springs.
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with Abraham Lincoln. “The amount of money [Frederick] could garner out of the ministry was not enough to support his family,” said Ingmire. “So he did other things and eventually settled on photography.” Frederick’s photography studio was across the street from Lincoln’s law office and the minister soon became the young lawyer’s photographer, taking images of the Lincoln family, even the family dog. As the family story goes, Ingmire explained, when Lincoln was elected president it was decided the family dog, Fido, would not be a good addition to the White House. That is when Lincoln asked Frederick to photograph the rambunctious dog so that his sons could at least take one of the images with them to the nation’s capital. Then, when Lincoln was assassinated and his body returned to Illinois, Frederick, continued Ingmire, made a point to photograph as many of the events as possible surrounding Lincoln’s funeral, including images of Lincoln’s body lying in state, the family home with black bunting hung from the eaves and windows and the president’s horse draped in black. Proof of his family ties to those images and events are in the details—Ingmire has been able to collect many of those original images, some passed down through the family, others through private sales or public sales, and each are stamped with the
Ingmire name as photographer. They are the only known images of Lincoln’s casket, his family home and the events surrounding his funeral. “I collected them one at a time,” said Ingmire, showing original 3x4 black and white prints of Lincoln’s casket next to his son, Willie’s, of the Lincoln family home draped in heavy black bunting and the president’s horse in a funeral blanket standing out front, and of Fido, the family dog. Then there are his military artifacts—some connected to his family and some that are not. There is the wooden peg leg used by a soldier who lost a leg during the Civil War, swords presented to officers for their honor and bravery, a piece of cloth that came from the bunting draped over Grant’s casket. Some items in his collection came from unlikely sources, such as the 8x10 photograph of President Grant sitting on the porch of the Union Hotel with Warren Leland—one of the only known images of the former president in Saratoga Springs. “It is extraordinarily rare,” said Ingmire, who was given the image as a gift following a Civil War encampment he helped organize, promote and participate in. Ingmire said that while his research and collection tends to be on the “obsessive” side, he urged people to start documenting their own family histories by beginning at home. “Your best source of information is your own family,” said
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Ingmire. “Take the time to interview your grandparents and great grandparents. Ask about their lives and what they remember about their grandparents and their great grandparents. Let that be the basis for your quest for information.” As for his future, Ingmire said he will still continue to research his own genealogical history, keep digging for Civil War memorabilia and still participate in the reenactments. “I find it enchanting, exciting and real,” said Ingmire, who nowadays devotes a lot of his volunteer time as president of Friends of the New York Military Museum. “My strongest interest in all of this is helping share my knowledge—I enjoy giving talks, sharing my research and helping others unravel the past. Uncovering the past has been a journey for me—one I enjoy and am passionate about—it has been fun.” In 2007, Saratoga experienced the 100 year anniversary of the largest convention in its history—the 1907 Grand Army of the Republic National Convention. To commemorate that anniversary, Ingmire organized the first Saratoga Springs Civil War Encampment, held in Congress Park. Now in its seventh year, the annual encampment is a living history event, replete with museum quality displays, historical information and hands on activities for students. It is held the second weekend in September each year and this year’s encampment will be this September 13, 14, and 15 in Congress Park.
STUDIO Presents The Big Eighties Dance Party! Featuring Special Guest
Deney Terrio Of Dance Fever Fame!
Come dance with the man who taught John Travolta all his moves....!
A Fundraiser for Medical Missions for Children www.mmfc.org
Saturday, August 3, 2013 7 pm - 11 pm At Saratoga National Golf Club You won’t want to miss this! | to Order Tickets, Please Go to mmfc.org saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
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A Night at the Brewseum
2013 Geyser Creek Fish Stocking
New York State Military Museum, 61 Lake Avenue, Saratoga Springs On Friday, March 22 from 6 to 9 p.m., the Saratoga Springs Lions Club and the Friends of the New York State Military Museum will be co-hosting a “Night at the Brewseum: Craft Beers and Military Gear”. The event will feature craft beers from the area, wine from area wineries, food, and entertainment. Tickets can be purchased on the Lions website at www.saratogalions.com, at the New York Military Museum store or from any Lions member. For more information, visit www.friendsofthenysmilitarymuseum.com.
Saratoga Spa State Park, Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs The date for the 2013 Geyser Creek Fish Stocking is Wednesday, April 3 beginning at 11 a.m. As the date grows nearer, we will announce a list of presenters, entertainment and crafts that will be offered in addition to the 800 brown trout swimming our way. If you plan on attending, be sure to wear warm clothes and boots, and arrive early to make sure you receive a fish. This event is FREE and you do not have to register. If you have any questions, please call Alli at (518) 584-2000 Ext. 116.
Capital District Garden & Flower Show
Skidmore College, Arthur Zankel Music Center, North Broadway, Saratoga Springs These performances the weekend of April 5 through 7 feature three famous ballets from Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes. 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. For ticket information, call (518) 580-5321 or go www.skidmore.edu/Zankel.
Hudson Valley Community College, 80 Vandenburg Avenue, Troy The first sign of spring in Upstate New York is the Capital District Garden & Flower Show held on the weekend of March 22 to 24. You’ll see fully blooming flowers exploding with color. You’ll hear the lullaby of trickling water from the many waterfalls and ponds. You’ll smell the luscious fragrance from the first flowers of the season. Visit gardenandflowershow.com for more information.
Easter Egg Hunt Malta Community Center, 1 Bayberry Drive, Malta From 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, March 30, please register by March 23, by calling (518) 899-4411. Residents of Malta $6, non-residents $8. Please bring your own Easter basket to collect your eggs.
An Evening with the Ballets Russes
Saratoga Baby and Toddler Expo Saratoga Independent School, 459 Lake Avenue, Saratoga Springs On Saturday, April 6, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., this free expo will include businesses from throughout the capital region with information and exhibitor booths for everything you need to know about having and caring for a baby or a toddler including birth options, choosing a pediatrician, proper car seat installation, preschool decisions, and how to lose the pregnancy weight.
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Lecture by Rick Shapiro
Spring Fling Dress Up Dance
Skidmore College, North Broadway, Saratoga Springs At 7 p.m. on April 15, Skidmore alumnus Rick Shapiro ’77, senior advisor to the Major League Baseball Players Association, will speak to several contemporary issues including “Brand Called Rick,” career entry and paths in professional sports, as well as myths surrounding professional athletes. For more information call (518) 580-5000.
Malta Community Center, 1 Bayberry Drive, Malta On Saturday, April 27 from 6 to 7:30 p.m., boys and girls bring your favorite adult to an evening of DJ music, dancing, snacks and crafts. Dress up in your finest suit or dress and make some memories. Each child must have an adult escort. For more information and tickets, please call (518) 899-4411.
History Faire 2013
Gavin Park, 10 Lewis Drive, Saratoga Springs Wilton Recreation hosts this tournament April 27 and 28 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., for players 45 years of age and older. Trophies and medals will be awarded. Tournament is double elimination, mixed doubles, men’s doubles, and women’s doubles—one category per registration, please. Entry fee is $22 per person, which includes tournament polo shirt and light refreshments. Registration ends April 24. Any questions, please contact the park office at (518) 5849455 during regular business hours, Monday through Friday.
Cornell Cooperative Ext. Ctr., 50 West High St., Ballston Spa On Saturday, April 20 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Heritage Hunters will hold its second annual History Faire. Come and learn about the purposes and resources of local history organizations. Many local historians, historical societies, churches, cemeteries, funeral homes, lineage groups and youth groups will be present. Other features include workshops, door prizes and hands-on activities. For more information on this family event email email@example.com or call (518) 587-2978.
Earth Week Saratoga National Historical Park, 648 Route 32, Stillwater From Sunday, April 21 through Saturday April 27, the Park offers a variety of ways for adults and children explore the greener side of life. For information on events, please visit www.nps.gov/sara/index.htm.
Saratoga Hospital Just for Women Event Saratoga Springs City Center Join Mistress of Ceremonies and WNYT Anchor Jessica Layton for a relaxing, enjoyable evening of shopping and dining on April 25, plus a fascinating presentation from acclaimed CNN news anchor, Ashleigh Banfield.
I Love My Park Day Saratoga Spa State Park, Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs I Love My Park Day, held on Saturday, May 4, is an exciting, statewide event to improve and enhance New York’s state parks and historic sites and bring visibility to the entire state park system and its needs. Volunteers will celebrate New York’s state park system by cleaning up park lands and beaches, planting trees and gardens, restoring trails and wildlife habitat, removing invasive species, and working on various site improvement projects. For information on how to volunteer, call (518) 584-2535.
On April 27 and 28, bring the family to this free tour to visit alpacas, bunnies, goats, sheep and lambs, llamas, and meet the farmers and their families. Watch spinning, knitting, weaving and felting demonstrations. Learn about raising the livestock and pets that we cherish. For more information, visit www.washingtoncountyfibertour.org.
Elms Family Farm, 448 Charlton Road, Ballston Spa On Saturday, May 18 at 9 a.m., Hero Rush brings you 3-5 miles of challenging terrain and the most unique obstacles you’ve ever faced. You’ll tackle a high-rise building fire simulation, get a hint of what it’s like to climb out of a burning basement, bust down doors, save victims and lots more in this intense firefighterthemed obstacle race. Afterward, check out the Inferno Midway, with food & beer, two kids’ courses and spectator activities, vendors, charities, local fire departments and more. For registration information, visit www.herorush.com.
Saratoga Mom Prom
Tuff eNuff Challenge
McGregor Links Country Club, Northern Pines Road, Saratoga Springs Ladies . . . looking for a fabulous fun-filled Girls Night Out in support of a great cause? Benefitting Saratoga Hospital Breast Care Center, this event is held on Saturday, April 27 from 7 to 11 p.m. Just pull out those old prom gowns, bridesmaid dresses or find the tackiest dress in a thrift shop and join us for a night of dancing, lite fare, cash bar, raffle baskets, good company and humorous prom traditions! To purchase tickets, please visit www.saratogamomprom.com.
BOCES and NYRA Lowlands, Henning Rd., Saratoga Springs On Saturday, May 18 at 9 a.m., the Tuff eNuff Challenge mirrors the challenges faced by the youth and families, the course will feature more than a dozen creative obstacles designed to test and entertain all participants. Obstacles include a spiderweb made of ropes, a long, dark, life-size drainage pipe, a wide variety of mud pits, balance beams, and a huge mountain of dirt. There will also be a one-mile Kids Course, a bounce house, and food vendors for spectators. For registration information, visit www.preventioncouncil.org.
Washington County Farm and Fiber Tour
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hat’s new this spring? The New York State Maple Producer’s Association annual Maple Weekend(s) are here! Mark your calendar for March 16, 17, 23 & 24 and head on over to the nearest maple producer to enjoy this time honored tradition. Not much has changed with the production of syrup since the colonists started making it before we became the United States and then Canada. The sap from the maple tree is boiled down, which concentrates the sugar molecules in the sap turning the final product into maple syrup. However, the U.S. and Canada have never quite agreed on the grading of the final product. The grade of the syrup is determined by the color or light transparency. Canada and Vermont label the lightest syrup as Fancy. New York and other states use the term Light Amber. On the darker end, Vermont for instance, labels its darkest syrup for consumption as Grade B, where as New York’s darkest syrup is called Xtra Dark for Cooking. This has created some confusion with consumers when they travel, and some very large bias. So, finally, a couple of years ago in an historic meeting,
16, 17, 23 & 24
the U.S. and Canada got together and decided to create a uniform grading system for both countries. Finally, we will all have the same names for the same grades of syrup. All consumable maple syrup will be considered Grade A, with four flavors ranging from light to extra dark. Here are the ‘official’ monikers: The lightest syrup will be called Golden, the next lightest will be called Amber, Dark is next and then the darkest, what used to be Grade B, is Very Dark. Each one of these will also have tastes associated with them to help consumers: Delicate, Rich, Robust and Strong. New York is in the process of approving this system and it will be in place by 2014, but elsewhere it’s in use. This is an exciting time in the maple industry because of these changes. Look for the name of your syrup changing soon…. Visiting a sugar house can be a wonderful, family experience. Maple Syrup producers love what they do and enjoy sharing this age old harvest. What better way is there to celebrate spring than fresh maple syrup, sugar‐on‐snow or pancakes in the sap house. Visit www.mapleweekend.com for more information or to find a producer near you. saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com
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