It is the ultimate destination planning goal for our resort communities to achieve an 11-month economy; that is, grow tourism business in scale with the Adirondacks to eliminate the seasonal nature of visitor activity. This early-spring period represents the 12th month, as the number one reason visitors are motivated to visit is the Adirondack outdoor recreational opportunities, and it is not consistently a good time to access the wilderness. And honestly, we can use the break.
In an ideal scenario, we’ll ONLY take these weeks off, and host a perfect blend of events, leisure travelers, and conferences throughout the other 11 months of the year.
Of course, the new conference center represents a significant move toward that goal. It will allow us to host a variety of meetings and conventions to fill in mid-week and “shoulder” seasons outside of the traditional leisure travel periods.
But we can’t overlook the value of the one weatherproof trip type: events. Lake Placid is fortunate to have the facilities and infrastructure to host “weatherproof” events throughout the year. Can-Am hockey tournaments are certainly welcome during the slower periods, and since they are held indoors, they are, by definition, not affected by the weather. “Weatherproof” as it relates to events has a different meaning in this context.
Events are weatherproof despite economic conditions. For instance, even though the price of gas is higher, Lake Placid Horse Show participants will still canter to the event, and we can count on filling the room blocks during Ironman with athletes and thousands of volunteers.
As the destination marketing organization for Essex County, we prioritize the promotion of events, and there are two types: those that enhance the visitor and resident experience, and those that also drive overnight visitation. Obviously there is some overlap, but the former would include events such as great Songs at Mirror Lake performances at Mid’s Park, farmers markets and art gallery openings. Examples of events that drive overnight visitation include Ironman, Lacrosse tournaments, the Horse Shows and multi-day conferences.
There is certainly an increasing understanding of the value of events, and with the 2011 Empire State Winter Games as an example, we’ve established great regional partnerships to ensure their success — a valuable asset to support our quality destinations moving forward.
I hope that everyone will be sufficiently rested up after this year’s 12th month, as there is a flurry of upcoming event attendees to welcome. Marketing partners and residents are encouraged to check online anytime at roostadk.com to view upcoming events and plan for increased visitor traffic. For your convenient reference, here’s a synopsis of upcoming major events.
May 7: Kyle Petty Charity Ride
May 11: Child Passenger Safety Conference: 600 attendees
May 20-21: Ausable River Two-Fly
June 2-5: Credit Union Association of NYS conference: 500 attendees
June 3-5: TOPS conference: 900 attendees
June 5-8: Association of State Dam Safety Officials conference: 240 attendees
June 5: Whiteface Uphill Foot Race
June 12: Lake Placid Marathon
June 9: Lake Placid Film Forum
June 16-19: Wilmington Whiteface Mt. Bike Fest
June 19: Wilmington/Whiteface 100k June 28-July 10: Lake Placid/ILNY Horse Shows
July 1-3: I Love BBQ Festival
July 4: Set the Night to Music- Fourth of July
July 11-15: Northstar Invitational LaCrosse
July 24: Ironman Lake Placid
July 29: Waterfest
July 29-31: International Rugby Tournament
August 1-7: Summit LaCrosse Tournament
Kimberly Rielly is the director of communications for the Lake Placid CVB/Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism, Essex County’s destination marketing organization
The Uphill Bike Race at Whiteface