WANAKENA WEEKLY #16 - 05/21/20 - 05/27/20

Happy Thursday!

This past week’s weather in a nutshell: HOT WANA HOT KENA HOT. Carol says it was 93... IN THE SHADE! Everything turned green! mmmmmPOP. Thunder rumble yesterday afternoon. Maybe someone said it rained for five minutes. Clear, sunny and hot though most of this past week. Lots of folks jumping in the river - just about perfect! BIG ol' hares jumping around near the labyrinth. Temperatures in the mid to high 80s most of the week – down in the 60s at night. Ceder Waxwings flutter about the apple blossom and spruce tangle. Forecast says RAIN this weekend. BRING IT ON!
Wanakena trailhead parking lots were more crowded than EVER – 18 cars counted at the lot by the tennis court. Folks who have lived in Wanakena their whole lives say they have never seen that many cars. Not that the woods are crowded, per say. But noticeably bumpin'. And by Tuesday afternoon they were all gone. CL50 hiker reports “400 lb black bear” around Cat Mt. Pond over the weekend - the bear ran off as soon as it saw (smelled) the hiker. Another Cranberry Lake 50 hiker had to leave his wife – who appeared to be suffering from Bever Fever (not Covid) - downtown here in the shade while he borrowed an Abode Bike to human power pedal to Cranberry Lake and retrieve the car. Upon his return he shouted: Thirty five minutes! And I’m sixty years old! In other news, the local NPR station (North Country Public Radio) had a non-covid-related top story yesterday.
Down at the Abode – We’re back open for business! It was a great first weekend back. We’re so happy to be back open and seeing everyone. Busy weekend with lots of out-of-town hikers popping in for snacks, drinks, etc before, during or after their adventures. BEGINNING MAY 22nd 2020 Otto’s Abode of  Wanakena, NY ended a TEN WEEK social distance hiatus and reopened for visitors and business initiating the first phase of re-opening. GALLERY EXPERIENCE AND STORE PROCEDURES. The Center For Social Distance Studies (CFSDS) has been created. You may enter what we’re calling our Social Distance Lobby. Only two people in store at a time. If the Social Distance Lobby is occupied one may either wait for occupants to depart or converse/exchange commerce through window. PAYMENT In person, on the spot (cash, card or check), Pre-paid over phone (debit/credit card information needed, Start a tab – Pay later (cash, card or check). So, really business as usual except we cant hang out in here and listen to music and you have to wear a mask. Well, when you put it that way – that’s pretty lame. But, we strongly feel it is the right thing to do at this time. We thank all of our returning customers for their support.
Bridgework continues! Over the past few days Wanakeners or non-Wanakeners spending time in Wanakena may have felt a slight *rumble* - dare we call it: a mini explosion. Yes, that's right. The mechanial woodpecker wasn't cutting the cheese (busting the rock) so the crew experimented with some EXPLOSIVES. The drive-ways leading up to the bridge are being built in the same way the peers were: heavy duty metal "mesh" filled and packed with gravel. Stacked and strapped. Like we say here down at Otto's Abode: "We'll be driving over that bridge in no time!"
The Wanakena Picnic Area has been slightly out of commission since this past winter/spring wind-blown-down trees and such. Project leader Wayne Allen utilized his top-notch chain saw skills and showed those trees who was boss. Dave Ziemba - facilities management - cleared some brush and got the site all mowed down tight and fresh. Great Job, boys! Sent a couple CL50 hikers over there yesterday. Please carry out what you carry in - don't trash Wanakena, please!

This past Memorial Day Weekend Paul Smith’s Adirondack Watershed Institute began positioning their Watershed Stewards at boat launches around the Adirondacks. That means Cranberry Lake has a Watershed Steward on-duty at the State Launch site down Matilda Road in Cranberry Village. That also means the "back door" to Cranberry Lake remains UNPROTECTED. It is up to YOU to help protect Cranberry Lake from Aquatic Invasive Species. Practice CLEAN, DRAIN, DRY with all your watercraft. Cranberry Lake DOES NOT have nasty invasive species like Zebra Muscle and Eurasian Milfoil - LETS KEEP IT THAT WAY!

The Wanakena Historical Association is back in action! This past week the famous empty-can-cart has returned. NO DOG POO BAGS PLEASE. Folks wishing to rid themselves of empty soda/beer/etc cans & bottles may chuck bags of 'em in the cart. Piers will haul it away filled with soon-to-be nickels. Teri and Crew and Mountain Gate Bottle Redemption do the rest. Also this past week Bill Gleason set back-up the Wanakena Walking Tour. ALSO, "Cats Meow"of the Wanakena History Center available for purchase down here at Otto's Abode. When are they gonna make a "Wanakena General Store" Cat's Meow?
The front porch has received a “new” newspaper machine. This is the THIRD newspaper vending machine since Otto’s Abode opened four and a half years ago. We'd say they keep getting better.... but they don't. But, you know what does? ART! Wanakena resident and Fabric Artist Annette Schwartz just dropped off a fresh batch of home-made face masks. The proceeds will go to the Wanakena Historical Association. Five bucks a pop. Fun patterns. Superb-quality! Learn more about Annette's practice here: https://www.birdhavenquilting.com/

NEW ART on view at Otto's Abode! 

May 11th, 1893 The Cranberry Lake Postal name became “Harewood” for a nine-year period. (St. Lawrence County Almanack, Robert LaRou). EIGHT MILES TO HAREWOOD is a of series of seven new postcard-sized drawings - by The Abode's resident artist Nolan Fedorow - which sought to depict the shoreline of Cranberry Lake and surrounding wilderness. This body of work is a continuation from last year’s series of seven drawings depicting Wanakena, Dead Creek Flow and surrounding wilderness called WHAT DO WE HAVE HERE? Historical sites such as “The Wanakena Hotel” or the “Morning Glory Lodge” have not been included in these drawings which seek to represent more of a current snapshot of the area. Though these drawings are essentially maps, they do not wish to function in the same navigational sense. Rather, these maps aim to re-think regions, destinations, and highlight smaller concepts such as bends in the river or passes between hills in relation to the larger whole. The drawings do their best to accurately represent current trails, junctions and destinations and serve as a jump-off point for planning and/or imagining wilderness exploration. Maps used for reference: Lucian Plumley’s 1961 Cranberry Lake Boat Club Map, George Bowditch & Paul Jameson’s Cranberry Lake Map, NYS DEC Designated Campsites Cranberry Lake (1991), USGS Five Ponds, Newton Falls, Cranberry Lake & Wolf Pond Quadrants, Five Ponds Partners’ Cranberry Lake 50 Map, National Geographic / ADK Club’s Old Forge/Oswegathie #745 Map, Paddlesport Press’s Whitney Wilderness MapMasks for sale.

The CRANBERRY LAKE BOAT CLUB announced via their Facebook Page that the public dock at THE HUB has been set back into Cranberry Lake with the help of some local volunteers. Great Job! Now folks on Cranberry Lake can moor at the village and scamper accross the street for some Ice Cream at Stone Manor.

Blackwaters Café and Trading Post in Wanakena is open for pick-up/take-out Wed, Thurs, Fri and Sat 11-6pm!!!! The best way to order is through their website www.blackwaterscafe.com

The Stone Manor Diner in Cranberry Lake is back to seven days a week 6:30 - 2:30. The ice cream window is open Thurs – Sun until 8pm!

Lakeside General Store in Cranberry Lake is now OPEN for the summer Mon-Sat 8-6 and Sun 9-5.

UB’s Mercantile in Oswegatchie, Todd Hardware, Adirondack Pharmacy and Circle K in Star Lake, Mountain Gate Redemption near Benson Mines, and Sevey Point remain open for business in one way or another (open, take out, pick up, drop off, etc…). Post Offices are open too (Thanks, Mary!)

The Clifton Community Library in Cranberry Lake hosts via Facebook Live bedtime stories most nights read aloud by Ms. Kate the Librarian! https://www.facebook.com/cliftoncommunitylibrary/

Hillside Diner in Oswegatchie, Twin Lakes and Coffee Fever in Star Lake remain temporarily closed.

Kim’s Lost Dog Report: There are currently NO lost dogs in Wanakena.

The St. Lawrence County spring outdoor burn ban that was in effect March 16th – May 14th IS OVER. BURN, BABY, BURN! Though, it has not been too rainy. One might say: "it is dry." So be extra careful (always) with your fires.

There is a time to fish and a time to dry nets – Chinese Proverbs

All for now!

Any questions, comments, concerns, trail condition inquiries, legends, jokes, animal sightings, etc… feel free to email otto@ottosabode.org or call 3158483008 or pop-in the shop! Wanakena Weekly archive here: http://www.ottosabode.org/p/wanakena-weekly.html