ON THE SCENE: Lake Placid Community Day a success | News, Sports, Jobs

Denise Bujold, Tammy Morgan, Ellen Lansing and Jill Cardinale are seen here at the Lake Placid Community Day event at the North Elba Show Grounds in Lake Placid on Sunday, June 5. Lansing is this year’s Youth Volunteer of the Year. (Photo provided — Naj Wikoff)

The fourth annual Lake Placid Community Day was held on Sunday, June 5, to celebrate and connect people who live, work, or volunteer in Lake Placid. The food, refreshments, music and other entertainment were free. Over 30 intervention, including the Cloudsplitter Foundation and St. Eustice Episcopal Church, sponsored the event and provided opportunities for people to volunteer. The high point was giving out well-deserved awards to the youth volunteer of the year Ellen Lansing and the adult volunteer of the year Linda Young.

The Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism and the Lake Placid / North Elba Community Development Commission co-organized Lake Placid Community Day to address a shared desire to honor the many people who collectively help Lake Placid be a great place to live. Held at the North Elba Horse Show Grounds with live music organized and presented by Scott Sileo and Jim Cushman, this year’s weather was picture perfect.

Lake Placid’s success on any level is that the community is not just volunteer-driven, but you might say hospitality-driven, or perhaps relationship-driven. Whether it’s the person who greets a visitor at a hotel, restaurant, shop or venue, that Equally important is the relationship between volunteers and the many athletes, coaches, and family members who come to Lake Placid throughout the year. Indeed, every task, whether it’s someone working in the health industry, education, opportunity. or local government, is vital to enhance our collective way of life and ability to host so many events around the year.

The overall event coordinator, Valerie Abraham-Rogers, has served on the volunteer committee since its inception. Joining the Community Development Commission a few years ago, she learned that they wanted to organize a block party-type event, a fun party for the community that hopefully encourages more people to become volunteers.

“As we always struggled to get people to come to the annual volunteer of the year presentation, my idea was to combine the two events,” said Abraham-Rogers. “That’s how Community Day was hatched. We had a great start for the first two years, and then everything went on pause because of COVID. Then last year we started up again; the big challenge now is getting the word out.”

Keela Rogers, Karen Armstrong, Linda Young and Stephanie Pianka are seen here at the Lake Placid Community Day event at the North Elba Show Grounds in Lake Placid on Sunday, June 5. Young is this year’s Adult Volunteer of the Year. (Photo provided — Naj Wikoff)

This year, they succeeded as Community Day was well attended by people of all ages with plenty of activities geared for young kids. Abraham-Rogers said that many people had told her that they want to volunteer but don’t know how to go about it they don’t know what volunteer opportunities are available.

“I think Community Day is one of the best opportunities for the people to come together and see how dynamic and multifaceted this community is,” said Garrick Smith, a FISU volunteer. “The 38 or more booths that we have here represent many great functioning organizations that make this community thrive. They also illustrate that this community wouldn’t be without volunteers. An added benefit of volunteering is the friends we’ve made, getting to know Today I’ve met at least 22 people who worked at the ’72 FISU University Games. ”

Karen Fountain, a 32-year volunteer with the fire department, agreed, saying the friendships she made have made the experience profoundly worthwhile. For Jay Rand, who has been a member of Lion’s Club since 1983, it’s supporting the community he loves. Sara Kane volunteers for Mercy Care so elders in our community can age in place in their own homes. Now serving on her third board, Judy Meagher says she loves her community and wants to give back.

Along with learning what volunteering opportunities are available, several organizations showcased their services. For Lake Placid village police, that meant letting families know about their safe bike helmet program for kids and their program to check kids’ car seats, both of which provide opportunities for free equipment if needed.

“One of my favorite activities is interacting with the community on days like this, in the school, or walking down the street,” said Officer Summo. “I think that’s a vital part of policing. The more kids are familiar with us; the more comfortable they are talking with us. It translates to when they are older, and they have an issue, they will not be afraid to talk to us. . ””

For kids, the issue could be an unsafe helmet. The department’s goal is to have extra helmets in every patrol car in case they see a young person operating a bike in an unsafe manner, has a helmet that doesn’t look safe, or none at all. It could also be parents needing a proper car seat for a child.

“We want to help make sure every kid in the village is safe,” said Sergeant Sorrell. “We can work with the State Police in Ray Brook, as they have a good program, and hopefully the county will as well soon, so we can provide coverage and support from all angles. It’s not about writing tickets; if by chance you get. in a bad accident, we want to help make sure that your child is protected. ”

In the past, the volunteer committee planted a tree to commemorate the volunteer of the year, now flowers are added to a perennial garden in Mid’s Park, and the names of the Distinguished Adult and Youth Volunteers are added to a perpetual plaque that hangs in the main hallway of the North Elba Town Hall.

Tammy Morgan, life science and environmental science teacher introduced the distinguished Youth Volunteer of the Year, Ellen Lansing. She praised Lansing for volunteering over 400 hours in the afterschool program this year alone, more than 60 in the composting program, and another hundred supporting skating ..

Keela Rogers, 2012 Distinguished Adult Volunteer of the Year, introduced Linda Young, the 2022 recipient, who back in the 1980s founded the Ecumenical Charities Program, the Interfaith Food Pantry at St. Agnes Church, and the Helping Hands Thrift Store out at Holiday Harbor , an effort to make sure anyone, no matter their circumstances, had access to food, clothing, and medicines amongst other needs.

“First of all, I want to thank my family for supporting my volunteering and getting involved all the time,” said Young. She thanked the volunteers for “The compassion, empathy, and giving that they give, and how she is happy to accept the award on their behalf.”

Young’s message, echoed by Lansing and all the people at all the tables, cooking the food, making the music, entertaining the kids, is that people matter and working together, we can change lives for the better.

“Today is our day to be proud of each other and have a day for just us,” said North Elba town Supervisor Derek Doty. “And it’s needed.”

Going forward, Community Day will be annually held the first Sunday after Memorial Day.

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