decosse & guitar

Where The Gibson Brothers Started

A quiet, smiling cashier and a rack of newspapers and magazines greet customers as they enter and set foot on the blue tiles. The brown shirt hanging from the wall states, “People kill. Not guns,” while a guitar-shaped Budweiser sign shines a flash of red light on the milk-laden refrigerator, whose noisy roar pervades the room. This out-of-the-way store full of candy, chips, and Leanin’ Tree greeting cards seems nothing out-of-the-ordinary. But Dick’s Country Store and Goods on U.S. Route 11 in Churubusco, N.Y., is extraordinary. Along the wall displaying handsaws adorned with hand-painted Adirondack Mountain scenes, there’s a door.…

sculpture court

The Natural Inspirations for Northern Museums

The North Country is full of green fields scattered with landscapes and wildlife. In this mountainous haven, art and culture grow out of its iridescence. The beauty of the Adirondacks, captured by many artists, sits on display throughout the region. Small town galleries tell stories of local and foreign lands through art. Here’s a sampling of the winter visual-arts scene. The Nina Winkel Sculpture Court brings a piece of Germany to the second floor of Plattsburgh State’s Meyers Fine Arts Building. Nina Winkel, a German artist who moved to New York, donated these sculptures 27 years ago. The court’s warmth…

Winter Carnival

Towering Ice Palace of Saranac Lake

The Ice Palace stands over 60 feet tall, illuminated by brightly colored lights against the rapidly darkening sky. Children laugh as they run in and out of the palace, joy and awe evident on their faces. Community members of all ages marvel at the spectacular sight in front of them, surrounding the magnificent ice dragons and unicorns as they snap pictures and wait for the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival’s fireworks to start. As it does, all heads look upward at colorful explosions lighting up the sky. The Saranac Lake Ice Palace is truly a sight to be seen. This season,…

Corner-Stone Bookshop Offers A Good Read for Everyone

The stale smell of books overwhelms as you walk through the door. Jazz melodies and notes bounce around the room, looking for ears to please like oxygen looking for lungs to fill. Aisles of shelves create an opportunity for exploration. Corner-Stone Bookshop is a “Choose Your Own Adventure” bookstore that will leave you in a browser’s paradise for hours, and this is the way Nancy Duniho wanted to leave it. Since the closing of Borders bookstores nationwide, Corner-Stone Bookshop is the only bookstore left in Plattsburgh. In 2011, Duniho planned to retire after 37 years of owning the quaint bookshop.…

Plattsburgh’s Interactive Children’s Museum

Pint-sized researchers conduct experiments and stand on tip-toe to study small insects through microscopes in the stem lab. Other young scientists in the main exhibit room play doctor using wall lights for fake X-rays while others practice tooth brushing in a real dentist chair. And that’s only a quick introduction to Plattsburgh’s Imaginarium Children’s Museum. The Imaginarium offers dynamic activities that will not only be educational but also bring children closer to their families. “Our main goal is to have a parent-led museum that basically encourages them to spend more quality time with their kids and to have a safe…

Jam-Packed Northern Festivals

Backwoods Pondfest — August 8 & 9 Festival goers who pull into Twin Ponds Campsite in Peru, New York, during August set up camp to a sampler of tunes —  jazz, funk, reggae and even a little dubstep fill the air. Originally called Pondstock, an old-school vibe reminiscent of Woodstock is complete with a campsite graced by a large peace sign and an older generation of tie-dye-clad hippies. Backwoods Pondfest is gearing up for its eighth year. It was started by Sandra Bazzano as a way to have fun with her friends while local bands played on her land. For…