SARANAC LAKE — Tell Media, a local marketing and communications company, has partnered with the Northern Forest Canoe Trail (NFCT), Play ADK and local artists and musicians to open a storefront in downtown Saranac Lake.
The space, located at 84 Main St., will showcase both nonprofit organizations. NFCT will share information about paddling opportunities in the Adirondacks and promote its business partners in New York, including local outfitters such as Adirondack Lakes & Trails Outfitters, St. Regis Canoe Outfitters, Mac’s Canoe & Livery and Raquette River Outfitters. Play ADK will provide information about its forthcoming children’s museum and family resource center, which will be located on Depot Street across from the historic train station.
The NFCT’s main headquarters are located in Waitsfield, Vt., which provides a strategic central point for the organization’s staff, as the 740-mile canoe trail stretches from Old Forge, NY, to Fort Kent, Maine; this will be the first time the NFCT has had a physical presence in a trail community. The move coincides with NFCT’s pending acquisition of the Adirondack Watershed Alliance (AWA) and its premiere events, including the Adirondack Canoe Classic, more commonly known as the 90-Miler.
“We’re excited to open up our new Adirondack Outpost,” said Anne Brewer, NFCT’s board chair and Lake Placid resident. “As we prepare to take over management of the AWA’s races and events, we want to make sure we have an active presence in the Adirondacks. Additionally, Saranac Lake is one of our busiest, liveliest trailside communities, and home to many longtime NFCT partners and supporters — this is a great opportunity for us to increase engagement with paddlers and outdoor enthusiasts.”
Play ADK is currently finishing plans to begin renovating the historic Branch and Callanan warehouse in downtown Saranac Lake. When complete, it will be home to an interactive children’s museum and a family resource center that will host parent support programs, WIC programming and more. The project has been delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic; site work is tentatively set to begin in the spring.
“We felt it was important to establish a presence in the community,” said Bev Bridger, co-chair of Play ADK’s Board of Trustees. “The project timeline has changed because of the pandemic, so our temporary home on Main Street gives us an opportunity to connect with the community, provide information about the children’s museum and the family resource center, and sell some fun merchandise that will raise funds for our capital campaign.”
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the storefront is currently closed to the public except for scheduled visits. When conditions change, it’s anticipated to be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Mondays through Saturdays.
Tell Media, owned by Chris Morris, leases the storefront from Adam Harris of ADK Real Property. In addition to NFCT and Play ADK, the space includes Tell Media’s offices and showcases local artists Karen Morris, Jenny Curtis and Eric Ackerson. Local band El Nac uses the basement as a rehearsal space.
“It’s great to have a downtown presence for the 90-Miler, NFCT and Play ADK,” Harris said. “Chris has worked carefully to develop a co-op that represents many different facets of our community.”
“I’m grateful to Adam for working with me to create this cooperative space,” said Morris. “I love Saranac Lake, and being downtown in a spot where we can promote local organizations and local artists and connect with the community is really cool. It’s a work in progress, and we can’t wait to open the doors when it’s safe and responsible to do so.”
Pictured, from left: Chris Morris, communications director at the Northern Forest Canoe Trail, owner of Tell Media and Play ADK board member; Jenny Curtis, artist and Play ADK board member; and Rob Carr, executive director of Play ADK. Photo by Kaet Wild.
About the Northern Forest Canoe Trail
The Northern Forest Canoe Trail is a nonprofit organization that maintains and promotes the 740-mile water trail that runs from Old Forge, NY, to Fort Kent, Maine, and connects New York, Vermont, Quebec, New Hampshire and Maine. The trail showcases the mix of landscapes and communities currently lining the traditional routes used by indigenous peoples, settlers and guides. It is the longest in-land water trail in the nation and consists of 23 rivers and streams, 59 lakes and ponds, 45 communities and 65 portages. To learn more, visit northernforestcanoetrail.org.
About Play ADK
Play ADK is a children’s museum and family resource center in Saranac Lake, NY, scheduled to open in early 2022. The children’s museum will feature state-of-the-art, interactive exhibits that encourage explorative play, which is critical to the social and emotional development of young children. Play ADK will also host a family resource center, a centralized space for parents to connect with services such as developmental assessments, infant/child CPR training, nutrition clinics and parent-to-parent support networks. To learn more, visit playadk.org.
About Tell Media
Tell Media is a communications and marketing company owned and operated by Chris Morris of Saranac Lake. It provides writing, editing, design and other services to nonprofits and businesses in the Adirondack region. To learn more, email firstname.lastname@example.org.