Summer Campsites are Already Going Fast!

We’re loving winter this year – mild temps with enough snow for skiing and snowboarding.  More ice bars than ever before.  Winter carnival season is right around the corner.  Yet, we’re nostalgic for those summer evenings in front of a campfire, listening to the soft splashes of waves hitting the shore and chatting with friends.

There are hundreds of campsites in the Lake George Area, many right on the water.  Reservations for the 2017 season are already coming in especially for Island Camping.

Yes, you read that right.  Camp sites on islands.  Take it from us – they’re not to missed.  Swim, fish, take the boat out for some tubing, sunbathe and enjoy spectacular views from your island paradise in the Adirondacks.

Island camping is extremely popular, especially on the single site islands.  Sites go very fast so book your dates NOW!   Reservations can be made online here or you can call (518) 623-1200.   You’ll need a boat, kayak or you could take a water taxi – there are several on Lake George.

If you’d prefer to stay ashore, the Lake George Area offers all styles of camping from the most rustic to full service glamping!  Tent, RV, ranch, cabins – on the water, in the woods – close to everything, away from it all.  Whatever you’re looking for in a camping experience, you’ll be able to find it in the Lake George Area.

Camping season may be a few months away but its never too early to start imagining your perfect summer trip.  We recommend you make some hot tea (it’s still winter after all), sit back and start your search right here.  Just think, in a few months, you’ll be holding iced tea and sitting under the stars!


10 Lake George Area Favorites

We reached out on Instagram to ask for people’s favorite things about the Lake George Area are. The responses, and your inside scoop on the best places to see, things to do and areas to explore are in! Here are our top picks for Lake George Area favorites.

  1. The Lakes! And not just Lake George. The Lake George Area is full of beautiful lakes including the below Harrisburg Lake in Stony Creek that’s just beckoning us to break the glass-like surface with an energetic jump in the lake.

Photo: IG User @cristineagbulos

  1. A summer day at Sandy Bay with boat rides and furry friends. Lake George is better with dogs and there are many lodging options that welcome them!

Photo: IG User @theupstatenylife

  1. Romping in the snow! A fresh blanket of snow tends to bring out the kid in all of us. While snowshoes and skis are great, sometimes layering up and heading out with a few friends is the recipe for a really great snow day.
  1. Downtown Glens Falls. The restaurants, boutiques, breweries, and twinkling lights will have you heading downtown every weekend!

Photo: IG User @gill.wlsn

  1. Docks. The perfect place to perch and enjoy the view, jump in or push off on a boat ride from. This beautiful dock is in Bolton Landing.

Photo: IG User @cynthiasorokadunn

  1. Prospect Mountain. If you’re not up for this challenging climb you can drive on up! Prospect Mountain offers beautiful views of Lake George and is easily accessible with its trailhead less than 1-mile south from Lake George Village.

Photo: IG User @adkglam

  1. Beach Road. As you stroll along Beach Road in Lake George you’ll find boats, beaches, ice cream, shopping, and so much more. By day enjoy the sun, at night keep your eyes peeled for shooting stars.

Photo: IG User @elizabethklassenphotography

  1. Crackling Campfires. After a long day on the lake or mountain, sitting around the campfire to wind down is an excellent end to a perfect day. At Hearthstone Point Campground you’ll be lakeside and only a few miles north of Lake George Village. You can find more camping options here.

  1. Million Dollar Beach. Large beach, lifeguards, volleyball nets, snack bar, and the quintessential Lake George view. Doesn’t get better than that. If you have your pup with you, head next door to Dog Beach where they can run and swim!

Photo: IG User @helenbmeehan

  1. Cat & Thomas Mountains. This hike in Bolton is great for beginners and families but the panoramic view at the top has even experts hiking these mountains. If you enjoy this hike, definitely check out the rest of the Lake George Land Conservancy hikes!

Photo: IG User @_capt.travis

Lake George Area Weekend To Do

Welcome to 2017!  Many of us are still recovering from the last few weeks of 2016.
Whether you’re looking to relax, shop, learn or get out there, the Lake George Area
has something to get your 2017 off to the right start!

Guided Snowshoe Winter Hike

Saturday, January 7 at 1:00 PM
Up Yonda Farm

Experience snowshoeing at Up Yonda Farm during a guided hike.  After a brief look at the techniques of the sport, visitors will hit the trails.  The property is home to many species of animals so expect to see a variety of tracks.  The fee includes a snowshoe rental.  If snow cover is inadequate for snowshoeing, we’ll do a hike.

Winter Wedding Show

Saturday & Sunday, January 7&8
Dunham’s Bay Resort

Are you planning a Lake George wedding?  Well, here’s your chance to talk with the best vendors in the area.  Still up in the air about your florist, photographer, caterer or the venue?  Head to Dunham’s Bay Lodge this weekend to have all your questions answered.  You may even be lucky enough to win some gifts, cash or free services!

Free Admission Sunday

Sunday, January 8, 12:00 – 5:00 pm
World Awareness Children’s Museum

Gather your little ones and head to Glens Falls this Sunday.  All afternoon, admission fees are waived.  Enjoy interactive exhibits where children can explore world cultures through play and music!  Special thanks to Kiwanis Club of Glens Falls and Consulting for Health, Air, Nature, & Greener Environment (CHANGE) for sponsoring this event.

Fort Fever Series – President Taft Comes to Ticonderoga

Sunday, January 8 at 2:00 PM
Fort Ticonderoga

In the early months of his term as President of the United States, William Howard Taft came to Fort Ticonderoga on July 6, 1909, as part of the Champlain Tercentenary Celebrations. Rich Strum, Director of Education, explores this only visit to Fort Ticonderoga by a sitting U.S. President.

The Coolest Bars in Town

Winter and ice go hand-in-hand, and it wouldn’t be winter in the Lake George Area without the local Ice Bars. These beautiful and completely functional bars are cut and carved out of massive blocks of the ice. They draw huge crowds, because ice cold drinks served up on a bone-chilling bar is as cool as it gets. The Ice Bar phenomenon has taken off in the Lake George Area in recent years. There are several major Ice Bars every season, and each one is a unique night out on the town.

The scene is swanky and elegant at the Sagamore Resort. Men hold their cocktails in winter gloves, and women are keeping warm in their finest coats and scarves. Everyone is holding an ice cold signature cocktail. It’s called the Glacier Ice Bar and Lounge for a reason: it’s all about ice. The sides of the Sagamore’s outdoor Veranda are lined with love-seats, penguin porters, and cocktail tables, all carved out of ice and back lit. Small groups of couples gather on the love-seats and around cocktail tables, bundled up and enjoying the conversation and brisk air.

The Sagamore’s Ice Bar and Lounge begins as 18,000 pounds of solid ice. Then master ice carver Tim Pierce goes to work. Through the use of chisel, hammer, and chainsaw, these massive blocks of ice are turned into an exquisite Ice Bar.

The physical Ice Bar is a thing to behold. It’s the size of the bar at your usual watering hole, standing four feet tall, with stools of covered ice to keep your behind from freezing. The detail of the bar is what amazes me. The backboard of the bar, where there is typically a mirror, is an ice silhouette of the Sagamore’s iconic bell tower. The foot boards are dotted with grape sized indentations. Rivets in the splash guards recall an actual bar. Bottles of vodka and other alcohols are placed with care behind the bar, lit from underneath and glimmering. A chunk of ice carved into an “ice luge” is poised on the side of the bar, ready for someone to step up for a shot.

The Sagamore’s Ice Bar does exactly what you would expect: creates a winter wonderland of ice for hundreds to enjoy. The Sagamore Ice Bar will be serving drinks for the weekends of January 20th-22nd, and January 27th-29th.

The Funky Ice Fest at the Adirondack Pub & Brewery is significantly different affair. While the focus of the Glacier Ice Bar and Lounge is solely on the ice bar, the focus of Funky Ice Fest is spread among several different icy creations. It is a festival based around all of the strange and unique things that humans can do with ice.

This year’s Funky Ice Fest theme is Interactive Ice. The awesome ice sculptures, an Ice Bar for the ages, and even a functioning Ice Piano, create a merry atmosphere that is not unlike other events at the Adirondack Pub & Brewery. And when those delicious, Adirondack inspired beers start to flow, you’re not going to want to leave.

And that’s before mentioning the funk. Funky Ice Fest stars DJ Derek, who will be keeping the party lively with all of those funky hits that you haven’t heard in years. If you have a favorite deep-track buried deep in your basement that is sure to get the whole festival dancing, make sure you bring your dusty old vinyl. Funky Ice Fest’s BYOV (bring your own vinyl) policy makes sure that no underground funk superstar will be missed.

This year, they’ve spread the funky goodness over two weekends, to ensure everyone has their fill of funk. The Adirondack Pub & Brewery’s Funky Ice Fest will be held on January 20th-22nd and January 27th-29th. Along with two separate ice bars this year, they’ll also feature drinks from local establishments, including Adirondack Winery, Lake George Distilling Company, Springbrook Hollow Farm Distillery, Champlain Orchards, and the Saratoga Courage Distillery.

As the Ice Bar phenomenon continues to grow in the Lake George Area, more local businesses are carving out their own take on the ice bar. The Inn at Erlowest will be holding their inaugural Winterfest at Erlowest this year, and the main event is a fire bar.

If you’ve never been to the Inn at Erlowest, you’re in for a pleasant surprise. This former private residence, built in 1898 as a part of Millionaire’s Row, has been restored to its former glory. It is a mostly stone structure, resembling a medieval castle, featuring ten luxurious guest rooms, snow covered lawns leading down to the lake, and views of Lake George that rank up with the best of them.

The Inn at Erlowest’s gorgeous back patio will be the center of the winter festivities. While Winterfest at Erlowest will have a fire bar instead of the typical ice bar, they will still be serving the signature cocktails that make these events a must-attend. Coupled with the fantastic views of Lake George and the distant mountains, the patio also has a blazing stone fireplace for when that cocktail gets a little bit too chilly.

After you’ve downed a cocktail or two, head inside to the ballroom for appetizing offerings from Lake George Area businesses. Executive Chef Adam Padilla will be serving up samples of the Inn at Erlowest’s fine cuisine. Local mainstays such as the Adirondack Pub & Brewery and the Lake George Olive Oil Company will be giving out food and drink as well. If you need a quick warm-me-up, a s’more and hot chocolate station will be there to help. Live entertainment will be enhancing the atmosphere every Saturday of the Winterfest.

Beginning on Saturday, January 21st, Winterfest at Erlowest will span five Saturdays. A portion of all proceeds will be donated to the Lake George Region for Women in Need.

Winter can be a cold and quiet season, but it doesn’t have to be in the Lake George Area. With remarkable events like these three Ice Bars, there’s no reason not to check out the Lake George Area. So bundle up, grab your warmest hat and your thickest coat, and give your friends a call. Eventually these bars are going to melt.


You can get lost in Thurman, and we mean that literally. Your phone GPS won’t work there. But getting lost in Thurman is certainly not a bad thing, especially if you’re not on a schedule and want to explore. See what’s around the next bend and stumble upon a hidden gem. Only a 20-minute drive from Lake George, Thurman is known for its farms, maple syrup, rolling hills, and beautiful views.

Don’t miss out on Thurman’s yearly events. Every fall you can take part in the Thurman Fall Farm Tour and visit six of the area’s farms. Start your day with a pancake breakfast and then venture onto maple farms, cheese farms, a llama farm, and more! In the spring, it’s all about celebrating the season, one sweet drop at a time, with Thurman Maple Days. For three weekends in March you can visit the area’s maple farms and see how the maple process goes from tree to table. Be sure to stock up on your maple syrup, maple butter, jackwax, and maple candy while you’re there! Bargain hunters should head to Thurman in May for their Townwide Sale where 60+ old fashioned yard sales pop up all over town. During the summer, you can find free live music in the great outdoors at Concerts at the Park. Everything from bluegrass to rock and roll every Monday at Veterans’ Memorial Field.

Thurman is best known for its maple farms that churn out pure gold every spring. While each farm is just a short ride from the other they each offer a unique twist that makes visiting them a special treat. At Valley Road Maple Farm they have a state-of-the-art sugarhouse and make maple products that range from maple peanut brittle to maple-garlic pepper. Adirondack Gold Maple Farm is one of the oldest sugarhouses in Thurman and operated by a third-generation maple producer, they certainly know what they’re doing! Around the corner is the beautiful Toad Hill Maple Farm barn sitting on top of a hill. They are the largest maple producer in the region. You’ll find Hidden Hollow Maple Farm nestled along a hill with steam pouring out from their traditional woodfired evaporator.

It’s not just maple farms in Thurman. At the Nettle Meadow farm you’ll find happy goats and good cheese. Actually, make that great cheese. Nettle Meadow won two gold medals at the World Cheese Championship for their Kunik and Apple Cider Fromage Frais cheeses. The farm is home to over 300 goats and dozens of sheep as well as a number of retired and rescued farm animals. You can visit their cheese shop from 11am-3pm and get a tour Saturdays at noon.

If you’re up for some adventure and exercise, head to Crane Mountain. The Crane Mountain loop is 3.2 miles and features a beautiful lake along the way and stunning views for miles on the top. You can find the trailhead at Ski Hi Road. Expect to clamber up rocks and ladders to get to the top!

Need a place to stay and eat while visiting Thurman? Warrensburg is only a couple miles away and full of lodging options and great grub. On your way into Thurman you’ll drive by their Town Hall, don’t forget to stop by and grab a map!

Lake George Area New Year’s Weekend To Do List

Around here, we know how to ring in the New Year!  Ice bars, parties, fireworks, boat cruises, concerts, hockey games.  You name it. 

Whether you’re looking to celebrate with the family or have a festive night out, there is definitely something going on for you in the
Lake George Area this New Year!  Here are our top picks.

Midnight Fireworks Over Lake George

New Year’s Eve at Midnight
Shepard’s Park

Join us for an annual tradition.  Ring in the New Year with an out of this world fireworks display over the southern basin of Lake George.  Watch from the shore anywhere in Lake George Village!

Ice Bar

Friday, December 30 – Sunday, January 1
Lake George Steamboat Company

The Lake George Steamboat Company kicks off their 200th year in operation with an ice bar by the lake!  Fire pits, specialty drinks and food trucks will be on hand this weekend to keep you warm and fed as you admire the beauty of Lake George in the winter!

New Year’s Cruises on Lake George

Three Cruises to Choose From
Lake George Steamboat Company

To usher in their 200th year in business, the Lake George Steamboat Company is offering three New Year’s Cruises.  The first is a New Year’s Eve Dinner Cruise, boarding at 5:00PM.  The second is a New Year’s Eve Fireworks Party Cruise boarding at 9:15PM.  The third is a New Year’s Day Champagne Brunch Cruise boarding at 11:00AM.

Lake George Polar Plunge

Sunday, January 1 at 1:00PM
Shepard’s Park Beach

Every January 1st at 1:00PM, hundreds of people rush into the freezing cold shores of Lake George for the annual Polar Plunge!  It’s a right of passage and a great rush to start the New Year!

A Family New Year’s Eve with The Zucchini Brothers

Saturday, December 31, 3:00 – 5:00PM
Charles R. Wood Theater

Ring in the New Year with the whole family!  Music for all ages, magic, ventriloquism and comedyDance with your kids, laugh until your sides ache and enjoy a New Year’s Eve party that’s sure to be great fun for everyone!

Frostbite Cruise

Sunday, January 1 at 12:00PM & 2:30PM
Shoreline Cruises

Start the year out right with a cool cruise on beautiful Lake George with delicious food & drinks, live entertainment, great friends and a spectacular setting that are sure to make this a New Year’s you’ll never forget.

New Year’s with the Adirondack Thunder

Saturday, December 31 at 5:30PM
Glens Falls Civic Center

Celebrate with the Thunder as they welcome the Reading Royals to town. Enjoy the post game fireworks and New Year’s Eve festivities follow in Heritage Hall.

Dynamite Hill Celebration Day

Saturday, December 31, 10:00AM – 11:30AM
Dynamite Hill Ski Hut

Dynamite Hill has a brand new tow lift.  Join them for their opening party and
meet Abe Studler, a Horicon native who is a hopeful for the 2018 Winter Olympics!



15 Dos and Don’ts for New Year’s Eve

You’ve arrived! 

Say goodbye to 2016.  2017 is just around the corner!  Time for a bigger, bolder New Year! 

Naturally, you want to start things off with a bang so you’ve decided to spend your New Year’s Eve out and about in the Lake George Area!  Good for you!  We can’t think of a more beautiful place to be.

To help make sure your Lake George New Year is one for the record books, we’ve compiled a list of New Year’s Eve Do’s and Don’ts.

DO:  See some fireworks!

Head to Lake George Village for a MIDNIGHT FIREWORKS DISPLAY OVER THE LAKE.  Or go see the Adirondack Thunder hockey team crush the Reading Royals and enjoy fireworks after the game!

DON’T:  Set off your own fireworks.

Personal fireworks are illegal in New York.  Plus, setting off fireworks in an unfamiliar location or in a less than sober state is probably not the best idea.  Leave the pyrotechnics to the pros.

DO:  Stay well hydrated.

Who wants to start off 2017 with a headache and upset stomach?  Follow the local rule of thumb – order a glass of WATER with each alcoholic beverage you drink.

DON’T:  Drink and drive.

This is common sense but all too often forgotten.  Police throughout the Lake George Area will be out keeping drunk and dangerous drivers off the roads.  We know that sometimes that extra drink can hit you harder than you expected but don’t be tempted!  CALL A TAXI!  There are plenty of local companies and they will be well staffed on December 31.  FYI:  Uber is currently not allowed to operate in Upstate, NY.

DO:  Take part in some local traditions.

Where else can you take a STEAMBOAT out to watch MIDNIGHT FIREWORKS or have a drink at an ICE BAR?  You have to try it!

DON’T:  Go out alone.

Have a trusted friend with you.  It’s so much more fun that way, and it’s safer!

DO:  Have a plan.

There are SO MANY PARTIES to choose from and we know you want to try them all, so why not make a plan?  Start with a list of all the things that you want to fit into your New Year’s Eve.  Pick the two or three that are most important and pencil them into your Holiday schedule.  Look at the rest of your list.  What can you fit in?  What will you have to save for later?  Stick to your plan!

DO:  Share your plan with someone who won’t be with you. 

Even with a plan, New Year’s Eve can be full of surprises.  Make sure someone at home knows where you’ll be in case you can’t hear your phone ringing.

DON’T:  Forget the essentials!

You’ll need your phone, ID, keys and some cash or a credit card.  Make sure you have them secured in a purse or pocket you will have on you all night.  Besides, once midnight comes, you’ll want to grab your phone to call all the people back home and tell them how awesome your New Year’s Eve in the Lake George Area is!

DO:  Have a good dinner.

Your night may last for 5, 6, 7 or even 8 hours, be full of cocktails and you may even find yourself dancing for a good part of the celebration.  You’ll want to have something in your stomach.  Even if the parties you’re heading to promise food, you never know what will be on the menu.  Make sure your appetite is satisfied before the festivities begin.  Click here for a few LOCAL RESTAURANTS we know will be open for the Holiday.

DO:  Fully charge your phone.

You’ll be texting, making calls and taking photos all night long.  Make sure your phone holds out.

DON’T:  Leave your drink or personal belongings unattended.

The Lake George Area is thankfully one of the safest places to celebrate and let go.  Just remember to be smart about it.  When you do need to run to the restroom, make sure a friend is watching your things.  Our suggestion – HAVE A BUDDY.   You watch their things and they watch yours.

DO:  Dress sensibly. 

You’re going out on the town.  You want to look good and feel good.  Just remember that New Year’s Eve can be messy.  Drinks get spilled, food gets dropped, dancing makes you sweaty.  Wear something you wouldn’t mind having ruined or that launders easily.

DON’T: “Forget” your coat.

You’re in the Lake George Area.  Right now, the forecast for New Year’s Eve is a CHILLY 29 DEGREES with snow late at night.  Yes, your New Year’s Eve look is important.  Just make sure it includes a coat and some shoes with traction.

DO:  Celebrate on New Year’s Day!

The fun doesn’t stop at midnight.  Get some rest and then hop on a steamboat for a New Year’s Day BRUNCH CRUISE.  If you’re really daring, join the hundreds of people who participate in the POLAR PLUNGE SWIM every New Year’s Day at Shepard Park in Lake George.

We in the Lake George Area want to say THANK YOU to everyone for a wonderful 2016!  We are so excited for all that 2017 has in store….  more on that later!









The Queen of American Lakes has many towns along its shores that are every bit as magical as the lake. Hague, New York is one such place. Tucked along the northern end of Lake George, Hague is an oasis of history, recreation and charm.

The Hague Historic Museum is open year-round and brings to life the significance the town had in the French and Indian War, as well as in the American Revolution. Hague was settled in 1796 and soon became a destination for New York City visitors who traveled by steamship to enjoy the benefits of time in the great outdoors alongside the lake.

Blending history and commerce, the Hague Market and Juniper on 2 occupy a beautiful 200 year old house located on the main road. Hague Market is the Adirondacks’ oldest running general store and, coincidentally, is owned by the town historian. General stores are anything but general, they are in fact, quite special. Hague Market operates between late spring and late fall. When you go you’ll find coffee, breakfast (think delicious baked goods and fresh yogurt parfait and granola), sandwiches that you can take to the lake or for a picnic and all sorts of drinks. Upstairs in Juniper on 2, enjoy looking through everything from home decor and baby gear, to women’s clothing and jewelry.  You can find their hours on Facebook.

Made in Hague is another place to put on your list as you explore this town. This specialty shop offers crafts, ceramics and fishing lures made locally, as well as photography and home wares. Use it, fill it, admire it, catch it, and hang it, Made in Hague has you covered.

For dinner you can’t miss the Hague Firehouse. The restaurant’s name comes from the building’s former use as a firehouse. One of the dining areas is outdoors and overlooks a brook. The menu is pub meets restaurant with substitutions for those with gluten allergies. Live music, great drinks and a friendly chef make the Hague Firehouse the place to be from May to September.

For a slightly more active experience you can go for miles, whether it’s on the 16 miles of snowmobiling and cross country skiing trails that the Hague Sno Goers manage or boating from Dockside Landing Marina. The marina can help you get on the water, use your own or rent a paddle board, canoe or kayak from them. If you forgot to pack food and drink, they can help you out there too.

The magic of Hague is its beauty—summer into fall, winter into spring, it is always a beautiful place to be.

200 Years of Memories! New Year’s Celebrations with the Lake George Steamboat Company

The new year is a time of reflecting on the past and looking forward to a bright future. The Lake George Steamboat Company, an indispensable pillar of Lake George’s past and future, will be remembering their rich history and looking forward to the future all weekend long as they celebrate the beginning of their 200th year. Join them beginning on Friday, December 30th for a full weekend of cruises and activities.

New Year Activities all Weekend:

The Lake George Steamboat Company is throwing a serious New Year’s party, with a boatload of special cruises and activities going on all weekend. The party begins on Friday, December 30th with the first ice bar of the season in the Lake George Area, as well as food trucks and fire pits. The ice bar will stay frozen on the steel pier in Lake George Village all weekend long.

The party continues on Saturday, December 31st with a New Year’s Eve Dinner Cruise. The dinner cruise boards at 5:00pm and sails until 8:00pm. It features music, dancing, a champagne toast, and delectable entrees such as Prime Rib and Chicken Francais.

Following the dinner cruise is the New Year’s Eve Party Cruise. The party cruise boards at 9:15pm and cruises until 12:30am. It features hors d’oeuvres, a pasta station, macaroni and cheese, music, and dancing. This cruise culminates in a legendary New Year’s Eve midnight fireworks show over the lake.

The party continues into New Year’s Day with a Champagne Brunch Cruise. Start the new year off right with music, dancing, champagne, and a breakfast and lunch buffet. This cruise sails through the Narrows, boarding at 11:00am and cruising until 2:15pm.



The Proud History of the Lake George Steamboat Company:

The Lake George Steamboat Company was formed on April 15, 1817. Their first boat, the James Caldwell, was a passenger ferry that brought people and supplies to the local communities on the shores of Lake George. As boats came and went, the main purpose of the Lake George Steamboat Company stayed the same — to entertain passengers on Lake George. As business increased, boats were built, upgraded, sunk, and dismantled. Increased horsepower helped to increase speed on the trips to Ticonderoga, and multiple boats were put into service to cover the ferrying of supplies as well as increased tourism business. In the 1920s, when Route 9N connected Lake George to Ticonderoga, business dropped off. The Lake George Steamboat Company improvised, staying afloat by bringing in well known bands to headline their dinner cruises. Following the lean years of World War II, Captain Wilbur Dow bought the company, and the Dow family has owned the company ever since.

Cruising All Summer Long:

In the modern age, the Lake George Steamboat Company is a must-do attraction in the Lake George Area. They offer cruises on three boats, the Mohican, the Lac du Saint Sacrement, and the Minne Ha Ha, from May through October. The cruises range from lunch and dinner cruises on the Lac du Saint Sacrement, to sight seeing cruises on the Minne Ha Ha, to the always awesome fireworks cruise on the Mohican. The cruises differ in length and destination, so guests can choose their perfect trip.

Check it out!

A cruise on Lake George is one of the essential pieces of the Original Vacation. If you’re in the Lake George Area this weekend and you’re looking for something to do, stop by the ice bar for a cold beverage, or take an iconic ride on one of the cruise ships. It’ll be a memory 200 years in the making.

Lake George Area Christmases Past

What are some Holiday traditions your family enjoys?  The presents, stockings, ugly sweaters?  Its hard to imagine a time before Santa, shiny gelt chocolate coins, trees with twinkling lights or neatly wrapped presents topped with bows.

Not so long ago, many of the things we associate with the Holiday season simply didn’t exist.

We’d like to take you back in time to Lake George Holidays past. Before shopping malls or even most of the roads we have today.  Long before turkey with cranberry sauce or fruit cake.  Even before most of those Holiday tunes we’ve all grown up with.

In the early 1800s, settlers were just beginning to build homesteads in the Lake George Area, and the way they observed the Holiday season was much different.  In fact, 200 years ago people didn’t go out of their way to observe the Holidays at all.  On Christmas Day, people lived out their lives as usual.  They went to work and ran their errands.  If it was a Saturday or Sunday a special service may have been held in one of the local churches, but there weren’t many.  St. Mary’s on Warren Street in Glens Falls, which started as a Methodist church in 1829, may have had a service, or the First Methodist Church in Brant Lake built in 1831.

What about Christmas trees?  Nope.  Settlers in the 1800s probably didn’t know what they were.  Fir trees have been a part of some European Holiday traditions for hundreds of years, particularly in Germany, but you wouldn’t have seen lit, decorated trees in the Lake George Area until the mid-1800s.  Trees first entered American popular culture around 1850.  Early Christmas lights were candles with open flames and presented a very real fire hazard until 1895 when electric lights were invented.  There is a similar and even earlier tradition of using fallen pine branches to decorate hearths and provide a pleasant aroma during the cold winter months.  However, this tradition was not associated with the Holiday season.

You may be surprised to learn that settlers in the Lake George Area did not enjoy the large feasts that we look forward to during the Holiday season.  In many places, particularly in wilderness regions like the Lake George Area, humble pie would have been the celebratory meal.  Yup, humble pie is a real thing.  It’s made from the most humble parts of a deer – organs like the liver, kidneys and heart.  A far cry from the elaborate spreads we enjoy today.

Gift giving has long been a part of the Holiday season and likely was in the early 19th and 20th century Lake George Area, but the scale and types of gifts were much different than our 21st century traditions.  Those observing Hanukkah likely gave gelts as they do today but instead of the golden wrapped chocolate coins given to contemporary children, real coins were presented to people of all ages.  Similarly, money was given to servants and apprentices in tipping boxes as a sort of precursor to our modern day Holiday bonus.

In fact Christmas did not become a national holiday until 1870.  After the end of the American Civil War in 1865, the Holiday season rapidly become popular, with the whole country yearning for the feelings of peace, home and happiness that the Holidays promise.  In response to this national need to make merry, the United States Federal Government officially recognized December 25 as a federal holiday in 1870.

Since then, people in the Lake George Area have been lighting trees, sending cards and welcoming visitors from near and far to their family tables to share the bounty and beauty of the Holiday season.  We sincerely hope that you are able to share your celebrations with us this year.  Even if you’re not, we wish you the happiest Holiday and a wonderful New Year!