LPHS alumni launch scholarship

Grant Reynolds, left, and Artur Novoselsky, left, pose outside the Lake Placid Lodge. (Provided photo — Natasha Holderied)

LAKE PLACID — For Artur Novoselsky, a 30-year-old musician based in New York City, growing up in Lake Placid is an experience that has never left him.

Though he no longer lives in the village, Novoselsky still feels rooted here.

“As much as the city is now my home, whenever someone has asked me where my home is, it’s always Lake Placid,” he said. “The place has always been very dear to my heart.”

That’s why he’s coming back.

Alongside Grant Reynolds, a Lake Placid High School alumnus turned Forbes 30 Under 30 entrepreneur and sommelier, Novoselsky will return to the village May 31 to kick-start a scholarship program for local high school students.

The scholarship, dubbed the Hillcrest Fund, is named after Reynolds and Novoselsky’s old neighborhood on Hillcrest Avenue.

The goal is to award a scholarship between $1,000 to $1,500 to one or two Lake Placid High School students who intend to pursue four-year degrees in a creative field.

Growing up in Lake Placid had its challenges, Novoselsky said. It was isolating, and there were few resources that allowed kids like him to facilitate connections with industries that weren’t related to tourism, hospitality or food service.

As a person that aspired to a creative career, some of his most formative years came when he left the area for college after graduating from Lake Placid High School in 2006. At Syracuse University, and when he later moved out to Colorado, he saw that the world is larger than what he knew here.

“If you can get out of Lake Placid, you can meet new people that are doing interesting things, open new horizons. I think that perspective is important,” he said. “There’s more than what you see here. In a perfect world, it’d be great to move away and return to open a business based on what you’ve learned elsewhere. Make something cool that the town’s never seen before.”

He hopes other Lake Placid kids get to experience that perspective, too.

“If you’re willing to take some risks and grow and expand and bring that back to Lake Placid, you can achieve really good things. It’s not going to be easy, but it’s not impossible,” he said.

Novoselsky and Grant plan to stop by their alma mater May 31 to speak with students about their experiences after leaving school. Later that evening, the two have planned a fundraiser at Generations Tap and Grill, with proceeds to benefit the Hillcrest Fund. Tickets range from $30 to $100.

He wants kids at his old high school to know that their community supports them.

“I feel like everybody wants to give back and do something, but the answer isn’t always clear,” he said. “Now that we have this little thing set up — we have something set up that makes it easier for people to contribute.”

Once the scholarship fund is in place, Novoselsky hopes to also launch a mentorship network that’ll be accessible to students. By pooling the resources and institutional knowledge of Lake Placid alumni, even those who have moved away from the area, he hopes to open even more doors for local kids.

“If we can just pull each other up, if there’s an infrastructure in place to do that,” he said, “I want to see everybody thrive in Lake Placid.”

Tickets to the Hillcrest Fund launch are available online. Search for “Hillcrest Fund Wine Party” on Eventbrite for more details.