The Week: What caught our eye

September 7, 2019

troybridge_Bulmer.jpgPhotographer John Bulmer transforms the Green Island Bridge into a light show.

DUTCH’S DEPOSIT: Did the long-dead gangster Dutch Schultz — Saratoga casino regular and Legs Diamond rival — stash $7 million in cold cash on a dude ranch somewhere in Saratoga or Warren counties 84 years ago? The new Travel Channel show “Code of the Wild” is on the hunt. No one is saying if they’ve located the loot, but the gem they did discover is the Lodge at Harrisburg Lake. The show airs Sept. 10.

ANOTHER KENNEDY GIFT:  In 1983, the director Francis Ford Coppola hired Albany’s William Kennedy to write the script for the 1930s crime drama “The Cotton Club,” the Harlem jazz landmark. The movie starred Richard Gere, Gregory Hines and Diane Lane. At the time, creative battles led to cutting some of the film’s best scenes. Now, Coppola has restored and re-edited the classic, adding 30 minutes of new footage including several high-energy musical and dance numbers. The Albany premiere of The Cotton Club Encore is set for 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 6, at The Hart Theatre in The Egg, Empire State Plaza in Albany. A conversation with Coppola and Writers Institute founder William Kennedy will follow.

FOODIE FALLS: Glens Falls is the Capital Region’s hot spot for emerging restaurants, with the Downtown Dining Triangle – Glen, Ridge and Maple streets – hosting an unprecedented diversity of fresh-ingredient, scratch-cooking kitchens run by eager-to-experiment young chefs. Newest is Rob Murphy’s Craft on 9. Around the block is AJ and Christina Richards’ [Farmacy], Chef Colin Miner’s Park 26 at the Queensbury Hotel (and the just-reopened Fenimore’s Pub), Rebecca Newell-Butters’ and Steve Butters’ Morgan and Co., Danny Chang’s Mikado, Doc’s at the Park Theater, Fresh ADK and Downtown Social.  Cheek to jowl are Davidson Brothers, Raul’s, Bullpen, Gourmet Cafe, Siam Thai Sushi, Downtown City Tavern, New Way Lunch (celebrating its centennial), Spot Coffee, Samantha’s Café, Spektor Coffee and the SUNY Adirondack Culinary Arts Center. A couple blocks away are big hits like Rachel’s Spice Co., Cooper’s Cave and beloved Poopie’s, Sam’s Diner, Steve’s Place, and Talk of the Town.

Classic Cars on display at an outdoor car showCRUISE LAKE GEORGE: This weekend, you don’t need a boat. Gun it for the 31STAdirondack Nationals Car Show at Fort William Henry in Lake George, with 1,500 antique, classic, muscle and specialty cars and hot rods on display. The 7-10 p.m. village cruise is a fan favorite. Fireworks on tap, too. Come early, expect a lot of traffic; this is a huge Lake George event.

THE MAGIC OF A LAKE VACATION: Summer is not over. Not. Over. Yet. She has not taken her leave. There is still time for a short vacation at a place where, for you, the years disappear and it’s all about the memories.

IN YOUR ELEMENT: If you still have traumatic flashbacks to chemistry class whenever you see a periodic table, take a deep breath. To celebrate the 150th anniversary of that genius distillation of all known elements in the universe, Bloomberg created a fascinating account of how each is used in business today. Looking for a state-of-the-art catheter? You need tungsten. Nitro cold brew coffee? That requires honest-to-goodness nitrogen.

PIGS FLIES: After a fair amount of rooting around and squealing but, thankfully, very little mudslinging, the people of Tupper Lake have chosen a name for their Empire League baseball team: River Pigs it is! Turns out more people voted on the Pig question than in the last school board election.

STAY JUST A LITTLE BIT LONGER: In 1975, Jean Raymond came from Stamford, Conn., for a brief vacation in the Saratoga County community of Edinburg.  She liked it so much she bought the general store and moved to town. If she is re-elected this fall — and with no opposition, that’s a good bet — she will become the longest serving town supervisor in Saratoga County.

START SPREADING THE NEWS: There are teams from around the country, but the power houses are in Boston and New York. And that’s the fierce rivalry everybody talks about. Beantown dominated the field for years. Now, New York rules.

A cabin in the woods with autumn leavesAMP UP THE GLAMP: Ditch that tent. Bag the sleeping bag. This fall, give yourself permission to give glamping a shot at one of the top spots in Upstate New York.

CHRONICLING 40 YEARS: Journalist, author and lawyer Mark Frost had $1,700 burning a hole in his pocket in September 1980 and did something truly crazy: He started a newspaper. Now, 40 years later, as many newspapers large and small struggle for survival, his very independent weekly Glens Falls Chronicle is thriving. It has carefully struck a balance between smart news coverage and insightful editorial judgments while engendering a deep connection to the people and community it covers and cares about. It also displays two other qualities in short supply in many media organizations: Humility and a sense of humor.

NICE PLACE TO START A FAMILY: Queensbury, Glens Falls, Saratoga Springs, Colonie and Scotia make Lending Tree’s list of best places to start a family in Upstate New York. The rankings considered housing costs, quality of schools, and employment opportunities. (Lending Tree’s geography leaves a little to be desired.)

FIGHT FOR THE SOUL OF ETSY: When it began in 2005, Etsy was the chill anti-Amazon, the epicenter of the internet crafter movement where people sold handmade and vintage goods to equally cool buyers worldwide. And then Etsy began to explode. It attracted venture capital, issued an IPO, and pretty soon it was worrying more about returns than rug hookers. How success changed and challenged everything.

BETTOR THAN EVER: The just-completed Saratoga Race Course meet generated $700 million in wagers, an increase of more than $46 million over the 2018 handle, despite a five-day race week (down from six), the earliest opening in history and the loss of a Saturday card due to weather. And not to be overlooked: The New York State Fair in Syracuse is no longer a sleepy affair: This summer it broke its all-time single-day attendance record.

HUNTING INVASIVES: At freshwater lakes around the country, invasives are a big problem. Flathead Lake in Montana has turned to submarines.


THE OTHER P IN P AND L: How would your middle-managers describe what they do and why? What inspires them? When a business knows and lives its purpose — the benefits it delivers to customers, employees, owners and community – employee engagement and brand leadership soar.

EMBRACE THE FUN: Color us sentimental, but we remember Crayola Crayons fondly. Turns out, making those little colorful wax sticks gets old. Crayola’s culture faded to gray. Now, the Crayolians are coloring outside the lines again. They remembered they were all about kids.

ORGANIZING A SPOT: Workers at the Spot Coffee in Buffalo have voted to join a union. AFL-CIO leader Richard Trumka is not surprised: “America's workers aren't interested in little slivers of change. We're not interested in gestures or tokens. We need action on a scale that will reverse a generation of corporate government that has rigged our economy to enrich a few powerful interests at the expense of everyone else.”

BACK TO THE WALL: Does your office leave you vulnerable to sneak attacks by Ninjas? Perhaps you’d feel safer and be more productive if your back were to the wall, literally.

LOVING HIS WORK: Butcher, builder, bricklayer Dan Galat has finally landed his dream job at 85.


SLEEPOVER MAKEOVER: Remember when a sleepover meant prank calls, truth or dare and late-night pizza?  Sleepovers have undergone a makeover. Think glam stations, organic cotton bedding, personalized eye masks and matching PJs.


LAND OF PHARRELL: Disney World, it was said, was the happiest place on Earth. Actually, it’s Finland, and if you go you can rent your own happiness guide.


You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.
John Bunyan


HOLY CLASSMATE, BATMAN: Lydia is just three and is learning that, even in pre-school, there are bullies. First, she came home with bruises on her face. Then came a black eye. Then she showed up with a friend with a cape.

PLEASE SHARE: Feel free to pass this along to your friends and colleagues.

THANK YOU to our contributors: John Brodt, Bill Richmond, Bill Callen, Lisa Fenwick, Colleen Potter, Tina Suhocki, Clare P. Tuttle and John Bulmer.

FACING OUT is what we do. We help companies, organizations and individuals work effectively with their most important external audiences – their customers, their shareholders, their communities, the government and the news media.

Facing Out features news and other nuggets that caught our eye, and that we thought might be of value to you, our friends and business associates. Some items are good news about our clients and friends, others are stories that we hope will leave you a bit more informed or entertained than you were five minutes ago. As always, we welcome your ideas and feedback. 

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