SCHROON LAKE - The Schroon Lake Tourism Council is making progress.
The group, which formed nearly two years ago, recently met to review steps in its master plan and to discuss future activities.
"The tourism council discussed our community's sustainability by looking at the question 'What is the necessary relationship between our community's population size, permanent and transient, and the ability to have sustainable services in the community?'," said Roger Friedman, a council member. "For tourism to succeed in Schroon Lake we need to recognize our comparative advantages and how to maximize local resource utilization."
The master plan is the result of 18 months of meetings and discussions. It was completed with the assistance of a consultant from Egret Communications. The project was part of a Smart Growth grant awarded to Essex County.
The blueprint contains specific actions, including the formation of a tourism council to operate under the auspices of the Schroon Lake Chamber of Commerce. The members of the council are Friedman, Bob Mehm, Georgia Burkhardt, John Huston, Julie Sawyers, Roger Peace, Sharon Piper and Shawn Baker.
Each member of the tourism council has volunteered to work with a small subcommittee on individual actions items.
Tourism council accomplishments to date include an improved internet presence and the addition of new activities in the community, Friedman said.
The Schroon Lake Chamber of Commerce has been working with ROOST (formerly Lake Placid/Essex County Visitors Bureau) in developing a new, improved website for the chamber.
During the summer of 2010 new activities and opportunities included bike rentals on the Main Street; pontoon boat cruises on Schroon Lake through a partnership between the chamber and Word of Life; Shakespeare plays in the park with the troupe, which plans to return to Schroon Lake for next summer; and open mic concerts in the Boathouse during the summer that have continued in the off-season at Witherbee's Restaurant on Wednesday evenings.
Friedman said future plans include the Schroon Lake Boy Scout Troop adopting the North Pond-Big Pond Trail in the Hoffman Notch under the auspices of the Department of Environmental Conservation's Adopt a Resource Program and the Essex County-Warren County Community Connector snowmobile trail at Scaroon Manor opening. The Community Connector Trail to North Hudson is also being worked on.
Other new activities being looked at include dogsledding, skydiving, scenic flights and improving area road and mountain biking venues.
The Schroon Lake Tourism Council is also taking on beautification projects.
A group is inventorying both public and private properties on the Rt. 9 corridor from Exit 27 to Exit 28 from the aspect of improving curb appeal. The council also noted improvements at the Schroon Lake Golf Course and learned the Adirondack Mountain Garden Club has cited the Schroon Lake Park & Boathouse with a 2010 Beautification Award.
Future plans for the Schroon Lake Tourism Council include efforts to attract young entrepreneurs, create greater diversity along Main Street and to market the community to the 450 students at the Word of Life Bible Institute.
People with interest in the Schroon Lake Tourism Council can Email Friedman at firstname.lastname@example.org.