What's Up North

  • Rebuilding Thanksgiving for All
    November 18, 2022
    Melanie Reding, Associate Director, Adirondack Diversity Initiative
    Like many contemporary holidays and celebrations, Thanksgiving has become a holiday where oversimplification, misrepresentation and myths tend to dominate the narrative. The history and significance of the day is often overshadowed by commercialism and merry-making. Holiday shopping and Black Friday sales, which increasingly begin on Thanksgiving Day, have become a distraction from the celebration of family and togetherness. Furthermore, when it comes to Thanksgiving, there is a deep and tragic...Read more

  • Fighting Over Dirty Dishes? Politics?: The power of naming feelings with Nonviolent Communication
    August 26, 2022
    David Epstein-HaLevi, ScholarACTIVIST-in-Residence, Adirondack Diversity Initiative
    by David Yisrael Epstein-HaLevi, Scholar Activist, Adirondack Diversity Initiative “How are you feeling?” It’s such a seemingly simple question — yet research by professor, lecturer and author Brené Brown has revealed that the average American adult has the ability to name only three feelings. How many can you name? Can you guess what they are? Maybe take a moment before reading further and see how many you can actually write down. For most it is limited to these: - Mad - Glad - Sad That’s it...Read more

  • Digital marketing builds success for North Country small businesses and organizations
    April 28, 2022
    The Adirondack Folk School specializes in traditional crafts — and uses modern digital marketing strategies to grow their audience. by Olivia Dwyer, ANCA CPR Program Navigator A flooring factory seems an unlikely place to find a social media mastermind. But that’s exactly where Scott Hayden headed soon after he became the executive director of the Adirondack Folk School (AFS). It was June 2016, and Hayden wanted to meet Eric Matthison, the owner of Square Nail Rustics, and learn how he’d used...Read more

  • The next generation: how you can support a vibrant future for North Country businesses
    January 26, 2022
    Zach Hobbs, Center for Pandemic Response Outreach Coordinator
    “For me and my family, the ability to do what we love and share it with others is a legacy we all want to be part of. Personally, it is very fulfilling to be back in operation and continue the family tradition for another generation.” ~ Josiah Martin, Martin’s Handmade Pretzels, Moira, N.Y. This month, ANCA’s Center for Businesses in Transition (CBIT) announced the successful transitions of three Franklin County businesses to new ownership. At Martin’s Handmade Pretzels in Moira, Josiah Martin...Read more

  • 2021 Last-minute Support Local Holiday Gift Guide
    December 16, 2021
    Audrey Schwartzberg, Communications Officer
    Nothing says true love like a year’s worth of garbage pickup. This may end up being my favorite gift this year. The rest are sitting wrapped, tidy and pretty, under the tree. My garage, on the other hand, is neither tidy nor pretty. It is bursting with trash bags, busted gear and crammed recycling bins — quietly waiting (and waiting) for us to make a trip (or two) to the transfer station. Our cars, in the meantime, are relegated to the cold and snow just outside the garage doors. When I told my...Read more

  • Risk and resilience: how businesses can survive and thrive post-COVID
    October 20, 2021
    Zach Hobbs, Center for Pandemic Response Outreach Coordinator
    In graduate school, I studied the concept of risk and resilience as it relates to the development of children and young adults. Put succinctly, the healthy development of humans is slowed by risk factors and promoted by resilience factors. Understanding these factors allows us to address risks and encourage resilience, either generally or in very specific ways. This rather academic concept was far from my mind 19 months ago when my boss, in another city and in a different capacity, called me...Read more

  • Business ownership: the key to retaining a young population?
    July 28, 2021
    By Dana Bamford, ANCA 2021 Summer Fellow Having grown up in suburban Boston, it was a real change moving to northern New York. Not because of the swarming Yankees and Mets fans and not even because of the dreaded winters — those I’ve had my fair share of in Boston. The biggest change for me was the shift to a more rural lifestyle. Before moving up to the Adirondacks and working with ANCA this summer, I attended Colgate University, which is located in a pretty isolated location. At Colgate, I...Read more

  • VIDEO: Ward Lumber becomes worker-owned cooperative
    May 14, 2021
    "Going forward with the co-op, we're creating a new family, and it will allow this business to continue perpetually into the future. This gives us an avenue to keep it going." ~ Ward Lumber worker-owner Kevin Kennedy Ward Lumber of Jay and Malone, N.Y. has been serving local communities for over 130 years. Following a two-year process spearheaded by fourth-generation owner Jay Ward, the business is now owned by a team of employees, including Jay. By adopting an ownership model that creates...Read more

  • Housing in the Adirondack region: one crisis away from crumbling
    April 20, 2021
    The COVD-19 Era is not the first time a large crisis spurred an affordable housing shortage in the North Country. From pandemics to terrorist attacks, communities across the Adirondack Park have felt the economic shockwaves of global events. As a region, as long as we remain passive towards the issue of accessible housing and the negative impacts it has on our workforce, we will always be one crisis away from crumbling our economy. Why is housing on my mind? I am one of the many individuals who...Read more

  • Rural Americans are the future of the clean energy economy — policymakers must catch up
    March 8, 2021
    By guest contributor Chitra Kumar , Senior Fellow with Aspen Institute 's Community Strategies Group and Thrive Rural Published with permission of the author and The Hill . Rural communities are integral to our nation’s economy, culture, history, and ecological health — and our future. Yet, our public policies often either treat rural America as an afterthought or make sweeping assumptions about rural people’s values, particularly when it comes to environmental sustainability. Depressingly, we...Read more