Empire State Development officials this week launched a webpage for Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Adirondack Challenge whitewater rafting event on the I Love NY website.
The launch was made on the same day — Monday, April 29 — the governor officially announced that the Adirondack Challenge would be held on July 21 in the town of Indian Lake, Hamilton County. The News Enterprise was the first to report on the date and place on its website April 24 after acquiring a tentative agenda for the event. The governor made his remarks on Susan Arbetter’s radio show, “The Capitol Pressroom,” on WBFO. He didn’t reveal any specifics.
The I Love NY website — http://iloveny.com/Summer/Themes/ADK-Challenge.aspx — calls the 2013 Adirondack Challenge “a celebration of New York’s beautiful Adirondacks region, culminating in a day of water races, food, music and more!” It outlines the following components:
•Invitational whitewater race
•Internationally competitive flatwater race
•Race-day festival with music, food, demos, displays, kids activities and more
•Lead-up calendar of fun events across the region
More details are promised “soon.”
Cuomo proposed the Adirondack Challenge, a national whitewater competition, on Jan. 9 during his annual State of the State address. However, since the speech, no details have been made publicly available, even though members of the Adirondack Challenge Steering Committee have been meeting and making arrangements.
The idea came from a multiple-day rafting trip he and some friends took on the Indian and Hudson rivers in September 2012 with guides at Beaver Brook Outfitters, based in Wevertown.
According to the tentative agenda, the Adirondack Challenge would feature a whitewater race for the governor and other elected officials and invited guests. Then there will be an internationally competitive flatwater event and a festival with food and music. That would include an awards ceremony hosted by the governor. In 2013, the event would be branded the Adirondack Challenge Kickoff Festival.
Partners would include the Adirondack Watershed Alliance and the Hudson River Professional Outfitters Association in conjunction with the Adirondack Challenge Steering Committee. Marketing and promotion would be handled by I Love New York.
The Adirondack Challenge is designed to highlight the Adirondack Park as a tourism region. In its first year, a July festival would “set the stage” for a 2014 event in the spring, when whitewater rafting conditions are typically optimal.
The I Love NY website lists the Adirondack Challenge with other Travel Ideas around the state, including New York Beaches, NYS Museum Week, Family Fun, Path Through History and Wine, Beer & Spirits.
The governor’s announcement came on the same day many Adirondack officials and tourism leaders were at the Adirondack Day festival in the Legislative Office Building in Albany. The event also featured a Taste of the Adirondacks segment with food and drinks from the Adirondack Park.