SARANAC LAKE - The village is putting the finishing touches on Mayor Clyde Rabideau's video tour of downtown businesses.
An initial version of the 30-minute video was uploaded to YouTube last week. It had more than 240 viewings as of this morning. Rabideau said the village also plans to distribute it to public-access cable channels throughout the region and post it on the village's website.
"It's marketing 101," he said. "I think it puts the best foot forward for our downtown. It also helps all our businesses because it attracts people to Saranac Lake."
Stan McGrain, center, who manages the Wilson Farms Xpress Sunoco station at Main and River streets in Saranac Lake, shakes hands with village Mayor Clyde Rabideau on April 26, 2011, as Jack LaDuke, right, video-records the visit.
(Enterprise photo — Peter Crowley)
The video begins with Rabideau sitting on a rooftop overlooking Main Street, inviting viewers to join him on a tour of the village's businesses.
"We're going to visit some shops, restaurants, boutiques, emporiums - all family-owned businesses because you're not going to find chain stores here," he says. "They don't make downtowns like this anymore."
Rabideau walks door-to-door down Main Street and Broadway, chatting briefly with the owners and employees of more than 30 downtown businesses about the products and services they offer.
The video also has its share of funny moments. At one point Rabideau sits in a chair in front of the Main Street Exchange, looking into a mirror.
"Mirror, mirror on the wall, where is the best place to shop from all?" Rabideau says to the camera. "That is here in downtown Saranac Lake."
Just down the street at the China Jade restaurant, the mayor talks about studying the Chinese language when he was in the Army, "many, many moons ago.
"Though it's been those many decades I can still remember maybe five or six words," he says. "It was a very difficult language, but it's great food."
The video was shot at several different times since last spring. It opens with a mustached Rabideau in a collared short sleeve shirt, then moves to a non-mustached Rabideau wearing a sweater before coming back to the mayor in summer dress.
The video also features one businesses that's no longer operating on Main Street - Borealis Color.
"We've got to make a couple minor changes," Rabideau told the Enterprise. "We have to cut out one business and change the logo on it. That will be done this week."
Rabideau thanked veteran Saranac Lake TV news man Jack LaDuke, who did the videography for the business tour at no charge to the village. It was edited by Mountain Lake PBS for a fee of $3,650, which the village paid from a Community Development account, Rabideau said.
The mayor noted that the video isn't easy to locate currently on YouTube, as it's currently located on the Mountain Lake PBS channel. He said the village plans to upload it to its own YouTube channel soon.