What You Will Learn on a Maple Sugar Tour

Every winter we see listings for maple sugaring tours, and every year we seem to be busy or forget to go. This year we finally went. What will you learn on a maple sugaring tour? A lot!

We went to the Great Swamp in New Jersey for our education. They were offering two sessions on a weekend afternoon – for $3/person (though no one asked for or collected money – and we checked in at the outdoor education center desk).

Follow the maple sugar leaf signs to the sugar shack at the Great Swamp. Copyright Deborah Abrams Kaplan

While there’s no way to know for sure who discovered maple sugar, Continue reading “What You Will Learn on a Maple Sugar Tour”

Visiting Corning New York and the Rockwell Museum

We visited Corning NY on a beautiful fall day. While it rained in the morning, these were the sunny skies we got later. Most people visit Corning to see the Corning Museum of Glass (our review here) and even to make their own glass.

 

Corning's well-known tower with a picture of a gaffer on top. In the foreground is the corporate office for Corning Glass.
Corning’s well-known tower with a picture of a gaffer on top. In the foreground is the corporate office for Corning Glass.

If you have time to visit the Gaffer’s District downtown (gaffer being a term used for a glassblower), check it out. You can walk from the Corning Museum of Glass – it takes probably 15 minutes at a good pace. There is parking downtown, though. Continue reading “Visiting Corning New York and the Rockwell Museum”

Review: Corning Museum of Glass with Kids

What’s it like to go to the Corning Museum of Glass with kids? I heard its holdings were extensive and one could easily spend a complete day or two there, exploring the galleries. I thought they might be bored. Turns out they loved it. While others could spend days there, our visit was limited to 3 hours (including the “make your own glass” experience – separate post). And that was enough time to see much of the museum, even though we rushed through the very large 35 Centuries of Glass gallery, as the kids were running out of steam.

Corning Museum of Glass
Corning Museum of Glass

Interactive Fun Continue reading “Review: Corning Museum of Glass with Kids”

Adirondack Extreme with Kids

Ever since I went to Flagstaff Extreme a few years back with my family, my kids and I were dying to do it again. Especially since my son was now tall enough to do the full course (in Flagstaff he was too short/young). And my husband missed out on that experience and wanted to try as well. This “aerial treetop adventure course” has multiple courses of ropes obstacles and ziplines. On our recent trip to the Adirondacks, we booked some time at Adirondack Extreme near Lake George.

Continue reading “Adirondack Extreme with Kids”

White water rafting on the Hudson – Adirondacks

When you see the Hudson River in New York City, or even the Hudson River in the Hudson River Valley, whitewater rafting is not something you think about. But further upstream just past Lake George, you can raft in the white caps, over 17 miles of class III-V waves. While there are two handfuls of reputable companies, we went with Wild Waters, connected to the Glen River Lodge where we bunked. You can read our review of the Glen River Lodge here.

This outfitter has been around some 30 years, and on a busy Memorial Day weekend, we had several bus loads of eager paddlers joining us on the journey.

DCIM100GOPRO
getting our gear

The gear shack had everything we needed – Continue reading “White water rafting on the Hudson – Adirondacks”

Review: Glen Lodge in the Adirondacks

We were looking to raft in the Adirondacks near Lake George, and came across the Glen Lodge and Market when researching. Their rafting/lodging special was too good to pass up ($199/person for 2 nights’ lodging, breakfasts, rafting day and dinner). We came with 2 families, booking three of the lodge’s seven rooms.

glen lodge 1
The Glen Lodge in Warrensburg has seven rooms and a woodsy feel.

The rooms were all upstairs. They had plenty of space and were stocked with tables, chairs, toiletries and a hair dryer. While not fancy, it was quite comfortable and warm. One treat was Lake Champlain chocolates on the nightstand. Continue reading “Review: Glen Lodge in the Adirondacks”

Review: Storm King Art Center

Having visited the Grounds for Sculpture recently, I was keen to get outside and see some more when my parents visited me. My mother is involved in the art world, and when I told her Storm King wasn’t too far away, she was eager to go. And we’re so glad we did. Storm King is one of the premier sculpture gardens in the world. Set on 500+ acres, the 100 or so large scale sculptures have plenty of space for themselves.

sculpture by Alexander Liberman
Iliad by Alexander Liberman (1974-76). This piece is similar to another Liberman we had on my college campus. We affectionately called it “Dueling Tampons.’

Wear good walking shoes, because you’re going to do a lot of walking. And it’s hilly. Storm King recommends spending 4-6 hours on a visit, if you have the time, and that you won’t see everything. Our goal was to see everything. We thought we did, but later saw pictures on the guides of  sculptures we somehow missed during the day. We were there about four hours, and our legs were tired by the end! (see the end notes for other ways to see Storm King, like  on the tram or on bikes).

Maya Lin
Maya Lin, who designed the famous Vietnam Memorial in Washington D.C., designed this Storm King Wavefield (2009), which is on 11 acres. Apparently, you can no longer walk on it.

If you’ve ever studied art history or art in general, you’ll recognize some of the artist names here: Alexander Calder, Maya Lin, David Smith, Nam June Paik, Mark Di Suervo, Richard Serra, Roy Lichtenstein, Sol Lewitt, Barbara Hepworth, Louise Nevelson, Henry Moore, Claes Oldenburg and more. They have works from all the heavyweight sculptors, focusing on monumental sculptures from the 1960s on. Continue reading “Review: Storm King Art Center”