Adirondack Museum59th season opens May 20 with fairs and family festivals, crafts from basket making to boat building, and the return of signature favorite events
Blue Mountain Lake, N.Y. - April 25, 2016 - The Adirondack Museum will open for its 59th season on Friday, May 20. Set on 121 acres, the 24-building campus will offer daily programs, family festivals and activities, compelling new special exhibits to complement permanent exhibits, and fairs for aficionados of all things Adirondack. A range of talented artisans-in-residence will demonstrate the scope of Adirondack craftsmanship, while workshops will give visitors hands-on experience and an Adirondack keepsake.


Nature Walks Opened to Minnow Pond

For the first time, the Adirondack Museum will open its historic trail to secluded Minnow Pond to the public. Guided walks with naturalist and Adirondack Guide Ed Kanze will be conducted on Thursdays in July, August and September. The scenic trail will also be available daily for self-guided three-quarter-mile hikes concluding at the 100-acre archetypal Adirondack pond, starting in July.

Interactive "Feathered Friends" Display

The museum's new interactive display "Feathered Friends: Birder's Byway" will highlight birding in the Adirondacks, a popular pastime since the late 1800s. There are more than 100 species of Adirondack birds, including boreal birds, birds of prey, perching birds and waterfowl. Blue Mountain Lake, in particular, provides the ideal nesting conditions for Bicknell's Thrush. In addition, visitors can see bird-related artisans at work throughout the season: painter Sue deLearie Adair, July 15-18; rustic-birdhouse-maker Donald Polunci, July 29-Aug. 1; painter Robert Stump, Aug. 5-8; woodcarver Al Jordan, Aug. 12-15, birch-bark bird painter Patty Happy, Aug. 19-22. Stump will lead the Bird-Painting Workshop on Aug. 9.

Weaving a Legacy

From sturdy yet elegant utility baskets to fanciful creations, basket making in the Adirondacks goes back well over 150 years. The "Weaving a Legacy: Mohawk Basketry Traditions" exhibit will reveal the significance of baskets in the Mohawk community and beyond; the materials, tools and techniques using in their creation; how traditions are passed through generations; and how the community is working to preserve both the craft and natural resources on which basket making depends.

Visitors will meet contemporary Mohawk basket makers who create unique works of art: Carrie Hill, July 2-5 and Aug. 6-9; Robin Lazore, July 9-12 and July 23-26; Ann Mitchell, July 16-19; Sheila Ransom, Aug. 20-23; and Natasha Smoke Santiago, Aug. 27-30. Mohawk Fancy Mail Basket Workshops will be led by Lazore on July 27 and Hill on Aug. 10. Shea Farrell Carr will lead the Adult-Sized Pack Basket Workshop on July 19 and Aug. 17.

Santiago, a Rochester native whose grandparents were part of a Mohawk diaspora, will also demonstrate Mohawk Pottery July 13-16, and lead the Haudenosaunee Pottery Workshop on July 17.

Additional Artisans-in-Residence

The museum's rich Artisans-in-Residence program gives visitors a window into a range of traditional Adirondack crafts every Wednesday through Saturday, June 29-Aug. 27, including Boat Building with Allison Warner for the entire span; Bamboo Flyrod Making with Doug Moody, June 29-July 2; Abenaki Woodworking with Denise Watso, July 20-23; Stonecarving with Matthew Gregson, Aug. 17-20; Guideboat Paddles with Gordon Fisher, Aug. 17-20; and Botanical Prints with Cynthia Rice, July 27-30.

Additional Workshops

Craft single- or double-bladed paddles under the direction of Tremolo Paddles owner Caleb Davis in Traditional Paddle-Making Workshops on July 1, 8, 17, 22 and 29, and Aug. 5, 12, 19 and 23. Marietta-native Tom Dwyer will lead the Outdoor Photography Workshop on July 27. Fifth-generation Adirondack native Bruce Wight will lead the Rustic Slab Bench or Table Workshop on Aug. 26, followed by the Rustic Birch-Bark Frame Workshop on Sept. 1.

Signature Adirondack Fairs

More than 50 regional vendors will come together to offer traditional and contemporary arts, crafts, foodstuffs, performances, demonstrations and workshops at the Third Annual Made in the Adirondacks Fair on July 23. On Sept. 10 and 11, the 29th Annual Rustic Furniture Fair will bring more than 40 dealers from all over the U.S. to offer unique interpretations of classic and contemporary rustic art, including handcrafted furniture, furnishings and Adirondack paintings. The Antiques Show and Sale on Sept. 17 and 18 will feature more than 30 dealers from across the U.S. offering furniture, historical fine art, rare books, antique sporting goods, militaria, folk art, vintage boats, taxidermy, quilts, Oriental rugs, Indigenous People jewelry and crafts, and more.

Special Events

Talented regional and national performers will gather for the Summer of '16 Music Fest on July 8. On the evening of July 30, the museum will bestow the prestigious Harold K. Hochschild Award to author, educator and environmentalist Bill McKibben at the 2016 Benefit Gala & Harold K. Hochschild Award Presentation. On Aug. 6, dogs are invited to bring their well-behaved owners for the Dog Days of Summer for doggy demonstrations, programs and activities. Visitors can discover life in the wilderness in the 1820s-1840s with American Mountain Men on Aug. 12-13 as they showcase a variety of survival skills. The FallFest and Fiber Arts Fair on Oct. 1 will include hay rides, pony rides, pumpkin painting, a scavenger hunt, hands-on fall crafts, apple pressing, live music, fiber-art demonstrations, and giant leaf piles from the museum's backyard for raking and jumping.

A Sense of Place & More

Reopening in May for its final season at the museum is "A Sense of Place: Ellen Phelan's Kenjockety," a collection of 24 oversized prints that explore the gardens and landscape of the artist's historic 40-acre Lake Champlain estate in Westport. Phelan's work is included in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

Visitors will continue to enjoy the museum's permanent exhibits, such as "Boats & Boating in the Adirondacks," "Woods and Waters: Outdoor Recreation in the Adirondacks," "The Log Hotel: Hotels, Camps and Adirondack Clubs," "The Buck Lake Club: An Adirondack Hunting Camp," and "Bull Cottage: Rustic Adirondack Furniture."

Daily activities include Old-Fashioned Wash Day and Feeding the Trout.

Sneak Peek at 2017

This season's visitors will get a preview of what's in store for the museum's 60th anniversary in 2017, when The Adirondack Experience, a brand-new 18,000-square-foot exhibition space with five distinct galleries, will debut in the former Roads and Rails building. This year's new temporary exhibit will feature designs, sample artifacts and prototype interactive experiences, including previews of Indigenous artwork, mining equipment and Anne LaBastille's cabin.

For Members

Adirondack Museum members enjoy a wealth of members-only events and privileges throughout the season. Memberships are available starting at $40 annually. More information is available at

Schedule & Tickets

The museum will be open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, including holidays, from May 20 through Oct. 10. It will be open until 7:30 p.m. on Mondays in July and August for Museum Monday Nights, each paired with a Monday Evening Lecture featuring Adirondack experts in a variety of fascinating fields (schedule forthcoming).

Daily admission is $18 for adults, $16 for seniors 62 and over, $12 for teens 13-17 and students with a valid student ID, $6 for youths 6-12, and free for children five and under, activity military personnel and members. All paid admissions are good for a second visit within seven days. Year-round residents of the Adirondack Park are admitted free every Sunday, as well as May 20-31 and Oct. 1-10, with proof-of-residency. Workshops and certain events require an additional fee.

The museum's Lake View Café offers sandwiches, wraps, salads, soups, desserts and beverages daily.

Dates and times are subject to change; please call 518-352-7311 prior to visiting to confirm.

About the Adirondack Museum

The Adirondack Museum, accredited by the American Association of Museums, shares the history and culture of the Adirondack region in 24 historic and contemporary buildings on a 121-acre campus in the Central Adirondacks, and in free programs at schools throughout Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Fulton, Hamilton, Herkimer, Lewis, Oneida, Saratoga, St. Lawrence, Warren and Washington Counties. The museum is supported in part with donations from the general public, with some general operating support made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. For additional information, call 518-352-7311 or visit


Contact: Brock Talbot, 212-980-9231,  
Paige Doerner, 518-352-7311 ext. 182,