Adirondack Region, N.Y. - The Adirondack shoulder season occurs sometime after the brilliant autumn foliage starts to fall and before the snow starts to pile up on ski trails. Demand for high-paced entertainment drops off and higher lodging rates start to fall, leaving quiet towns basking in the calm that signals the end of the summer tourist hoards. Towns and villages throughout the Adirondacks, mountain paths, and deep lakes and rivers reclaim their tranquility. Local events offer entertainment to more intimate audiences, there's no wait at favorite restaurants - so you can luxuriate over a bottle of wine as long as you like - and the trails up some of the more popular mountains don't resemble the train station at rush hour. It's perfect if you're looking to get away for a long weekend and relax, take in the local culture and maybe bag a few peaks. Many Adirondack hotels, like The Copperfield Inn in North Creek, offer special Adirondack lodging rates and guests often enjoy extra perks simply because the staff has more time to cater to guests' needs. This shoulder season, the Copperfield Inn is offering guests the option to "Build-Your-Own" package for a guys weekend, girlfriends' getaway, a family trip or a romantic couple's retreat. Build your package with options like biking, fine dining, museum visits, spa treatments or even add on a hot air balloon ride. In Lake Placid, the Mirror Lake Inn is offering the "Adirondack Outing" package perfect for an outdoor adventure retreat, complete with a backpack lunch, resort credits and hiking trail recommendations. You don't have to stay the night, but you may want to after the Queensbury Hotel's Wine & Chocolate Tasting Nov. 12 with domestic and foreign wines, chocolates, cheeses and desserts. Lake George, a popular spot for families in summer, offers quite the varied entertainment options to visitors in the shoulder season. The Hyde Collection in Glens Falls is sponsoring an "After Dark Art & Music" event with music and refreshments October 28th to highlight the artists of the Mohawk-Hudson Region exhibition. Tickets are required and more information is available online at http://www.hydecollection.org/. If you're into kitsch, the Black Velvet Art Party Nov. 5th is worth the trip alone. In association with the Lake George Arts Project, this music and velvetastic event kicks off at 8 pm at Roaring Brook Ranch in Lake George. With a theme of "Ga Ga," awards for original black velvet art and attire (including The Joan Reid Award for Most Inappropriate Attire), live music, dancing and psychic readings - it's the can't-miss-kitsch you won't want to miss. More shoulder-season events to check out:
- Adirondack Phantoms Hockey vs. Rochester American Oct. 15, 16, 22, and 30th; Nov. 12 & 13 at the Civic Center in Glens Falls.
- Adirondack Ski, Snowboard & Sled Spectacular Oct. 29-31 at The Dome in Queensbury. Exhibits, demos and swap shop.
- Smucker's Stars on Ice returns to Lake Placid Nov. 27 with performances by Evan Lysacek, Sasha Cohen and hosted by Scott Hamilton.