SARANAC LAKE — A hike that challenges climbers to top six peaks around the Village of Saranac Lake won that community Adirondack Park recognition.
The certificate, presented by APA at its recent Local Government Day, says: “In special recognition of a simple economic development idea from Mayor Clyde Rabideau, which in less than a year has already drawn hikers from fifteen states and five countries, we present the program with an Adirondack Park Excellence Award.”
In all, the Adirondack Park Agency handed out 10 awards to municipalities for public events and community celebrations held in all seasons.
Nominations were judged by the Adirondack Tourism Council Board of Directors based on several criteria — community spirit and involvement; benefits to community; and how the event helped foster a distinctive, inviting atmosphere with a strong sense of place.
They also had to show how the events demonstrated creativity and innovation by including entertainment, activities, and value to both residents and visitors.
Categories were set for: Adirondack Sporting; Most Authentic Adirondack; Quirky; Spring or Fall (off season); Summer; Winter; Water; and for best Historic-Cultural-Educational-Agricultural program.
RING THE BELL
Saranac Lake’s award was one of two marking special recognition, and Rabideau was thrilled with the kudos.
“Saranac Lake is honored to receive this recognition as we all work together to preserve and promote the many natural resources within the Adirondacks in simple sustainable ways like the 6er Program,” Rabideau said in accepting the framed award certificate.
The Saranac Lake 6er Program was created to spur local tourism last spring.
Residents and visitors are invited to climb the six peaks surrounding the village: McKenzie, Ampersand, St. Regis, Scarface, Haystack and Baker mountains in exchange for a patch, bumper sticker, certificate and a special 6er Number.
So far, in less than11 months, 557 people have rung the 6er bell, Rabideau said.