Adirondack winter vacations

I could not believe my eyes as I stumbled across — er, I mean, went to my systematically, automatically prearranged, numbered files of old Enterprise copies and found this …

An eight-page copy of the Enterprise, dated Jan. 2, 1954, a mere 66 years ago — a special edition with a big-type headline: “ADIRONDACKS OFFER WINTER VACATIONS” … and every inch of those eight pages were margin to margin, locally written stories about the Adirondacks … history, history, history.

This copy was published just seven months after Jim Loeb and Roger Tubby bought the Enterprise in June 1953. They put their hearts and souls into this newspaper, knowing what it meant to the community, and they became involved in every aspect of the community.

First skiers here in 1892

(Nat Leduc — were you with that group?)

“Skiing came to Saranac Lake for the first time in the winter of 1892. John R. Booth, of Ottawa, who rented a Saranac Lake cottage, brought a pair of skis on one of his winter visits. At the request of Burr Gray of Saranac Lake, Napoleon Bailey, a carpenter at Branch and Callahan’s Mills, made additional pairs which were used for the next several years.”

An excerpt from the lead story

The Haases were the aunt and uncle of Sharon Higgins Bishop.

“Why a Winter vacation in the Adirondacks? Why a Winter vacation at all?

“Anyone who has been confined to a city desk for the long months since the summer days out doors can answer the second question. They’ve been months without the sense of well-being that comes from a touch of life outdoors.

“In the past 50 years, for Adirondack Winter vacations go as far back as that in the oldest Winter resort region in America, thousands have come for weeks and weekends. More important they have come back every year.

“Cold? The Adirondack Winter is not what it used to be. The days are warm (?!&X#*), and the air crisp. Everyone seems too busy to notice the cold.”

Skiers at Paul Smith’s College

By Dr. David McKee

“Every year the first snowfall is eagerly awaited at Paul Smith’s College. Forestry, hotel management and liberal arts students, with their skis lacquered and waxed and ready to enjoy the unusual skiing facilities to be found on the 20,000 acre campus.

“With a tow on the lighted campus slope and one on the rugged slope of Jenkins Mountain, provision is made for both the beginner and the expert. For the touring skier miles of woodland trails are available.”

(Paul Smith’s graduated its first class in 1948.)

Activities in Lake Placid

By Ed Keys, VP, Lake Placid C of C

“Long before the Winter Olympics of 1932 brought this pioneer resort into international prominence, Lake Placid began to develop its outstanding program of winter sports activities. The experience of these years produces today one of the finest sports calendars for the spectator in the country.

“Lake Placid is more than just a ski center. Guests can enjoy indoor and outdoor ice skating, hunting, bobsledding, aerial scenic flights, skeet shooting, indoor rifle or archery practice (I believe that M.J. still teaches these courses at ROOST); tobogganing, horseback riding, ice-fishing, ski-joring, figure skating, ski-picnics, snow shoeing, baseball on ice and many other activities. The more intrepid can even try their hand at ski-jumping.”

More short takes from 1954 next week.


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