TUPPER LAKE - It was all good at the Park Restaurant here Friday evening.
Hordes of people turned out for "All Good Things," hosted by ARISE (Adirondack Residents Intent on Saving Their Economy) and the Tupper Lake Chamber of Commerce, and broadcast by radio station ROCK105. The mood was joyous, with Tupper Lakers shaking hands, high-fiving and hugging in celebration of the state Adirondack Park Agency's approval of a permit for the Adirondack Club and Resort.
"There are a couple people in the house that deserve a tremendous amount of credit for their patience, their tenacity and their stick-to-it-tive-ness," ARISE Chairman Jim LaValley said during an address to a crowd of more than 50 people.
Supporters of the Adirondack Club and Resort celebrate the approval of its permit by the state Adirondack Park Agency during the “All Good Things” event Friday evening at the Park Restaurant in Tupper Lake. From left are ARISE Chairman Jim LaValley, Saranac Lake Mayor Clyde Rabideau and developers Michael Foxman and Tom Lawson.
(Enterprise photo — Chris Morris)
"They've risen and fallen with the challenges of this project," he said. "How many communities can say that they've had somebody hang in there as long as Michael Foxman, (and) Tom and Susan Lawson?"
Saranac Lake village Mayor Clyde Rabideau and Trustee John McEneany attended the celebration. Rabideau, credited for coining the phrase "We're all Tupper Lakers" during public hearings on the ACR last March, spoke to the crowd in French, honoring Tupper Lake's French-Canadian history.
"That translates to: Today, you have prevailed, and I congratulate you for all of your hard work and your tenacity," Rabideau said. "You're showing the Adirondacks what it takes, and you'll show the Adirondacks how it can be done. God bless you."
Foxman, who was on his way back to his home near Philadelphia, said he couldn't thank the community enough.
Seated at a table, Tupper Lake resident Laurie Hachey said it felt like a breath of fresh air passed over Tupper Lake on Friday.
"Without this (the ACR), nothing will come again," she said. "I'm just so happy."
Her husband, Donald, said he was thrilled and happy for the developers.
"They worked so long for this," he said. "This means jobs for the North Country."
At a neighboring table, T.J. King of Indian Lake, who is originally from Tupper Lake and works on the ski patrol at the Big Tupper Ski Area, said a lot of hard work is finally paying off.
"Big thanks to the developers for believing in Tupper Lake," King said. "Hopefully, the rest of the process will be expedited."
King said he was at Big Tupper when the decision was announced.
"It didn't really sink in until now," he said. "It's absolutely amazing."
State Assemblywoman Janet Duprey could barely take a step without someone embracing her and saying "thank you."
"It's not just a victory for Tupper Lake; it's a victory for the entire North Country," Duprey said.
"You know, I've got to thank the APA staff and commissioners," she added. "This has been a monumental task for them. I think they knew this was the right choice and the right vote. They followed the mandate of the Adirondack Park Agency, and certainly this is the best thing that could have happened for Tupper Lake."
Contact Chris Morris at 891-2600 ext. 26 or firstname.lastname@example.org.