WANAKENA WEEKLY #57 – 03/04/21 - 03/10/21

Happy Thursday!

– THERE WAS A ROBIN HOPPING AROUND IN THE YARD! Any questions? Wow, the breeze has been warm. Really feels like spring. Grass is showing, bugs are flying around. LOTS of snow melting off. Not TOO quickly, though. It was quite cold and windy early in the week. A group of deer strut around town though the evening – out on the frozen river and though backyards. Snowmobile trails should still be rock-solid, even after this thaw and rain. Cross Country ski trails in the region will have suffered from this thaw but should make a recovery next week. Someone was flying their military jet really low and local the other day; around and around and around and around… rumble rumble rumble rumble. A BIG group of Fort Drummers out on a camping trip via the Cat Mt trailhead. Here’s a link to the most recent town board meeting minutes (02/10/21): HERE 

ST. LAWRENCE COUNTY BURN BAN – A burn ban is in effect from March 16th through May 14th in St. Lawrence County and the rest of the state according to the DEC. Open burning is prohibited in NY, with several exceptions: Campfires less tham 3 feet in height and 4 feet in length, width and diameter are allowed; small cooking fires are allowed; fires cannot be left unattended and must be filly extinguished; only charcoal, or clean, untreated or unpainted wood can be burned; Ceremonial or celebratory bonfires are allowed. In towns with a total population less than 20,000 you may burn tree limbs with attached leaves. The limbs must be less than 6 inches in diameter and 8 feet in length (also refered to as brush). However, this is NOT allowed from March 16th – May 14th due to increased risk of wildfire. 

- Down here in the Village by the Footbridge the accumulation a top frozen river is THICK, lumpy and wavey; a lot of pressure pushing on it from up above. Still A LOT of ice and snow up the Rapids. If there is an ice jam – it could be trouble. Hopefully there is a slow and steady thaw through the spring. Ted Tate assures us that currently the ICE JAM DANGER remains LOW. 

– Temperatures will drop through the weekend. Up near 60 on Thursday, down into the 40s Friday, and into the 20s through the rest of the weekend into next week. Single digits Sunday night! Possibly a few inches of snow mid next week. Spring Fling, anyone? This weather forecast is brought to you by Wanakena’s own PATTIJACKNAN weather team – a Wanakener garage-pole-mounted weather station and crew. THANKS, TEAM! This weather station can be found at: https://www.wunderground.com/weather/us/ny/wanakena/KNYWANAK8 Also, always beautiful photography at the Wanakena Tracks facebook page

– ***REGISTER AT OTTO’S ABODE AND STONE MANOR*** A message from the CLBC’s fearless leader, Halsey Bagg: Every year Chuck and Deb Yartz, in support of the Lion’s Club, have been conducting an Ice-Out contest. This year The Lion’s Club has decided not to conduct the contest. So, the CLBC will take the ball (buoy) to keep this tradition ongoing. The date and time ice melts on Cranberry Lake is hard to predict. Every year the time can vary by many weeks. Guessing the closest date and time that a buoy comes out from under the ice is the Winner. A buoy has been submerged near the Yartz’s home on 635 Columbian Road. This is important as the ice can melt off the lake at different times at different locations. The official date and time for this contest is this particular buoy. Enter as many times as you want at $2.00 each guess. The attached form is designed for five guesses ($10). The winner will receive 50% of the total amount of entries. The remainder will be a donation to the CLFD. Please mail your completed entry and donation to: Halsey Bagg, PO Box 503, Cranberry Lake, NY 12927 or email your entry guesses to halseybagg@gmail.com and mail the donation to the above address. The ice is about 30 inches thick now. However, the ice could start melting soon, so get your guess in by March 17th.Give it your best shot, good luck! http://www.cranberrylakeboat.club/…/CL-ICE-OUT-CONTEST-FORM… (Please make checks out to Cranberry Lake Boat Club) 

– Commemorating ONE YEAR of Covid we’ve decided to take the big, old chalkboard off the front porch. The sign read: "OTTOS ABODE - PLEASE READ - PLEASE PRACTICE SOCIAL DISTANCING - PLEASE WEAR A MASK - WELCOME - NOT TOO MANY PEOPLE INSIDE AT ONCE PLEASE". At this point anyone who is going to wear a mask will continue to be cautious and careful, and anyone who doesn’t want to wear a face mask surely won’t start wearing one now. As complicated as the whole pandemic thing has been, we’re happy to report that 99.9% of people have sucked it up and worn a mask. **** ADDITIONAL INFORMATION FOR CLARITY **** OTTO'S ABODE STILL KINDLY ASKS THAT FOLKS WEAR A FACE MASK THAT COVERS THEIR MOUTH AND NOSE WHILE ENGAGING WITH OTTO'S ABODE. Not only is this our policy, but it is a NYS law. We have NOT changed our mask policy - we have simply removed the cumbersome chalkboard from the front porch where it has been located since the pandemic began; a breath of fresh air. CEREMONY. CHANGE. We brought it down to the new Wanakena History Center to see if they wanted this important slice of history but they were closed. Here it lies:

- A couple weeks ago we released a brand-new book ("zine")! This publication - debuting on Otto's Abode's fifth anniversary - seeks to provide a glimpse into the nuts and bolts of our process. Packed with writing, photography, illustration, mission statements, art exhibitions and descriptions, local information and more! Black and white, 34 pages, 5.5"x8.5". LET US KNOW IF YOU WANT ONE AND WE’LL MAIL ONE TO YOU!!!!! Or, c’mon down to the shop and pick one up for $5. Judy James paintings on view and for sale over by the coffee counter. Also, don’t forget to check out our grocery section! We’ve got plenty of groceries here in the shop to help you throw together breakfast lunch and or dinner. Also, books, maps, hiking-goods, knickknacks, snacks, drinks, gifts, necessities and more. Hot coffee, too! THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING OUR FAMILY-RUN BUSINESS! 

– We’ll call it our JUNK DRAWER. Sometimes you need a place to put things. Uncategorical things. Things you don’t want to put in the trash. Important knickknacks you might need. They don’t really have a place, but now you know where to find them – usually. Five years ago, when Otto’s Abode first opened its doors to the public, we came into possession of some beautiful, old, glass & wood cases that had been used to display merchandise here in the store, some of which for nearly one hundred years. In a world where billion-dollar mega-media corporations hire folks like Marie Condo to tell you to get rid of everything, behold: a small “best-of” selection of GLORIOUS JUNK that has been collected and displayed in the (now) empty case behind you over the past five years.

- OTTO’S ABODE, an Adirondack Art-centric Inconvenience Store and Travel Agency, invites YOU to participate in a summer-long exhibition we’re calling THE JUNK DRAWER SHOW. Five years ago, when Otto’s Abode first opened its doors to the public, we came into possession of some beautiful, old, glass & wood cases that had been used to display merchandise here at the old General Store – some of which for nearly one hundred years. Over the past five years, one of these cases became our JUNK DRAWER. It became a place to put uncategorical art-things. Previously exhibited Important art-knickknacks. A JUNK DRAWER for previously exhibited art. Well, we’ve emptied-out our JUNK DRAWER and are looking to fill this now empty, beautiful, wooden and glass case with YOUR submission. What’s in your junk DRAWER? We invite you to practice your own form of junkology and nudge you to examine THE JUNK DRAWER as a content-rich cultural biome. We encourage you to share your findings with us! We’re looking for JUNK DRAWER goodies such as photographs, tools, oddities, hand-drawn diagrams, dust, poems, treasure, etc… this is just a small list of what we hope you’ll submit to be included in THE JUNK DRAWER SHOW. Please include a written description of WHY you submitted this object; its significance, its story. If the object came from your JUNK DRAWER it most likely fits in the beautiful, glass & wooden case we will exhibit the objects within. We’ve got a photograph of the empty case available for viewing at www.ottosabode.org. You may drop your submission off to us directly or slap a stamp on it and mail it to: OTTO’S ABODE, PO Box 1, Wanakena, NY 13695. Please include your name, phone number, a brief project description, and any other supportive material. We ask all submissions to be received by us on or before Sunday, March 28th 2021. If applicable, please include compensation for return postage. Submissions will be mailed out or picked-back up by Labor Day Weekend. If you are able, we kindly ask participants to include a suggested $10 donation fee with each submission – thanks! No one will be turned away for lack of funds. Email (ottosabode@gmail.com) or phone us (315-848-3008) with any questions. Otto’s Abode reserves the right to refuse any submission we deem inappropriate or too vulgar. Through we promise to take great care, Otto’s Abode is not responsible for reimbursement of any form for any lost, stolen, or damaged submissions. JOIN US at OTTO’S ABODE, 6 Hamele street, Wanakena, ALL SUMMER-LONG for THE JUNK DRAWER SHOW!

– Last weekend the course was groomed and playing VERY nicely. We’ll see what the thaw and rain brings. There will surely be leftover snowbanks. Perhaps some of the tunnels may collapse. Forecast says it will get COLD next week and will therefore solidify the mounds rather nicely. Lots of snow croquet season left! Below is a photograph of a track left in the snow. You’ll see the ball rolled up the banks and slam dunked right into the wicket. Now THAT is snow croquet in all its glory!!!! 

- IS OPEN AND HAS ANNOUNCED: Due to C19 and warm winter trends, we will have 2 separate schedules. #1 IF THE SNOWMOBILE TRAILS ARE DECENTLY RIDABLE: we will be open regular days and hours (T, W, Th 8am-3pm. Fri & Sat 8am-7pm. Closed Sunday & Monday). #2 IF THE TRAILS ARE NOT DECENTLY RIDABLE, we will only be open Th 8am-3pm. Fri & Sat 8am-7pm. ***Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we encourage take-out - and WILL NOT let in more than we are allowed. If the door is locked, we are at capacity. But if you’d still like a meal to go, order online and it will be prepared in the order received - or - think ahead and schedule a pickup time. Come in smaller groups. CHECK OUT THEIR TRAIL CAM: https://www.gotsnowcams.com/gotsnowcams.htm 

WANAKENA HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION – IS DOING A BOTTLE DRIVE. The Wanakena Walking Tour is “closed” for the winter… but deep in the bowels somewhere, some folks are hard at work actualizing the WANAKENA HISTORY CENTER. Here is a message from their website: Five equal partners (made up of groups of families and friends) are forming an LLC (Limited Liability Corporation) each pledging $25,000 for a total of $125,000 to own, renovate and restore one of the original Rich Lumber Company houses at 21 Second Street to its original facade. Their dream and intent are to provide a location for a Wanakena History Center where the WHA can continue its mission to encourage greater knowledge of the history and to display and make available for study: artifacts, relics, books, manuscripts, papers, photographs, and other records and materials relating to the history of the State of New York and particularly of Wanakena and the surrounding area.

RANGER SCHOOL - RANGER SCHOOL IS IN SESSION FOR THE 2020/21 SCHOOL YEAR, BUT THE CAMPUS IS CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC!!! Here’s a message from the Ranger School: The Ranger School's James F. Dubuar Memorial Forest will be closed to the public for an indefinite amount of time beginning Saturday, August 15, 2020. The Cranberry Lake 50 trail, which passes in front of the school, will remain open. This action is necessary to protect students and staff as they begin a new academic year in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, but it is a critical precaution as we work to ensure the health and success of the Class of 2021. Thank you for your cooperation. Here’s a story about it all: https://www.nny360.com/news/stlawrencecounty/property-sales/article_eeec3094-901a-531a-8a18-ab1b991b3a79.html CHECK OUT THEIR TRAIL CAM: https://www.esf.edu/rangerschool/webcam.htm 

WANAKENA CHURCH - CLOSED FOR WINTER! WESTERN ADIRONDACK PRESBATYRIAN CHUCH zoom-zooms every Sunday at 10:45 using meeting #6663654813 and every morning at 9am for a Morning Prayer. WANAKENA CEMETERY ASSOCIATION announced that Cremation Remains burial has gone up from $150 to $250. Also, there is no longer a backhoe charge for cremation burial because they don’t use a backhoe for cremation burials any longer. 

NEW CAR BRIDGE - AS OF 11/25/20 THE NEW WANAKENA CAR BRIDGE IS OPEN FOR PUBLIC USE!!!! AS OF 12/22/20 THE TEMPORARY BRIDGE IS FULLY DISMANTLED!!! And as they’ve been saying around Wanakena: WE’LL BE DRIVING OVER THAT NEW BRIDGE IN NO TIME!!!!! And ALAS! WE DO! Now that the bridge is WIDE OPEN, watch out for speedsters!!!


HAREWOOD: Stone Manor Diner and Motel is OPEN! The Clifton Community Library will return to curbside service on WEDNESDAY'S ONLY. Tooley Pond Duck Decoy Showroom in Cranberry Lake is OPEN (call first)!!!!!!! John Dragun NEON ARTWORK and MORE down in Windfall… OPEN! Check out the Cranberry Lake Boat Club and The North Shore Hub on Facebook. The Cranberry Lake Fire Department will NOT be checking and facebook-reporting the ice thickness as in years prior: FISH AT YOUR OWN RISK! LAKESIDE GENERAL STORE IN CRANBERRY LAKE IS CLOSED FOR THE LONG WINTER SEASON.

OUT WEST: Coffee Fever is back open after a covid/winter hiatus. AMERICAN LEGION has been WIDE OPEN! Todd Hardware, Adirondack Pharmacy and Circle K in Star Lake are OPEN! Though we heard Circle K no longer sells beer! YIKES! UB’s, and Adirondack Rustics in Oswegatchie are OPEN! Community Bank in Star open! Mountain Gate Redemption near Benson Mines is open. There will be NO ICE SKATING AT THE AREANA this winter – cause, ya know: covid. Bargain Hunter says The Town of Fine Offices are CLOSED to the public ‘cause of COVID-19. Coffee Fever IS COVID-CLOSED. Both Twin Lakes and SOS in Star Lake got a fresh paint job but remain temporarily closed since March 2020. The following is copy-pasted from the Fine Town Board Meeting hours from Wednesday 11/11/2020: Jeremy wanted the board to be aware that the Dollar General is looking into putting a store at the former Great American site. This would not be required to go to site plan review since it is not a change of use. HERE IS A RECENT ADIRONDACK ENTERPRISE ARTICLE ABOUT A DOLLAR GENERAL IN WILLMINGTON, NY (NEAR WHITEFACE MOUNTAIN) https://www.adirondackdailyenterprise.com/news/local-news/2021/02/plans-submitted-for-wilmington-dollar-general/ HERE’S ANOTHER STORY ABOUT ONE OPENING IN BLOOMINGDALE: https://www.adirondackdailyenterprise.com/news/local-news/2021/03/dollar-general-planned-for-bloomingdale/ Local, independent business are closing-up for good, millionaires are becoming billionaires and dollar stores are popping up like weeds…. or, rather, more accurately: invasive species... What role will YOU play?

KIM AND THOMS LOST DOG REPORT: As of today, there are NO lost dogs in Wanakena.


Any questions, comments, concerns, trail condition inquiries, legends, jokes, animal sightings, cartoons, 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 Also, we probably wouldn’t turn down the opportunity to publish your submission!

"Month of snow blindness was the name given to March by the Blackfoot Indians.”
– The Berkshire Traveler Press Almanac