Northern New York women dressing for the holidays in the 1940s focused heavily on accessories. At the annual Christmas Teas held by the College Women’s Club of Jefferson County, the women in these photos showed off popular fashion trends of the decade. These women finished off their looks with festive hats, broaches, and belts to celebrate the season.
BY: HOLLY C. BONAME
As the holidays draw near, finding the perfect gift can be a stressful and daunting task. But it doesn’t have to be. Thinking outside of the box stores and looking locally can ease this stress and even produce a custom gift for each person on your holiday shopping list.
Buying locally not only allows for you to find the perfectly customized gift for your loved ones it also supports your area small businesses, keeping Northern New York communities bustling with business and economic growth.
“Every purchase made locally results in funds going back into our economy,” said Greater Watertown-North Country Chamber executive director Kylie Peck. “The more we shop locally the more effect we have on those that are supporting local programs, non-profits and causes that mean the most to us”
Throughout Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence Counties, many small businesses thrive due to support from local residents.
While shops along the St. Lawrence River depend on tourism during the summer months, they still remain open during the off-season; for small businesses in development it is about their passion for the products which they strive to share with their neighbors and friends.
“Of course it is very gratifying when people use and buy my products,” said Laura Cerow, owner and creator of St. Larry’s organic oils, lotions and potions, “Then they share with me how much they love them. But the most rewarding part is when someone finds relief of some kind from a product, that they had not been able to find elsewhere. I also formulate for individual needs and I really enjoy that aspect as well.”
It is that personal relationship with local business owners that makes shopping locally a benefit to the consumer.
“We always encourage people to shop locally when they can. We are so fortunate in the greater Watertown area to be surrounded by quaint towns that offer unique shopping experiences. During the holiday season, the chamber acts as a neighborhood champion for the Small Business Saturday movement. For many year’s we have assisted with increasing awareness of this great program,” Mrs. Peck said.
Not only does shopping for the holidays within your local communities benefit the economy, but it helps the consumer save money as well. By shopping locally, you are saving on the cost of shipping and handling. Many online shops claim to provide free shipping during the holidays, but you are paying a higher price for that retail item.
Shopping during the holidays also should be a fun experience shared with friends and family. While browsing the internet from the comfort of home can be relaxing, having personal experiences and laughs while finding the perfect holiday gift can be exciting and create lasting memories.
Remember, your family and friends are one of a kind. Shopping locally means you can choose unique and one-of-a-kind gifts that are as special as the recipient.
NNY Living encourages you to focus your holiday shopping at many of the region’s small businesses this holiday season by following our non-chain holiday shopping guide below Holly’s Holiday Pick.
Holly’s holiday pick
With the holidays just around the corner it’s easy to forget to care for your personal health and wellness. Becoming overwhelmed with the hustle and bustle of shopping, hosting guests and family and preparing the big holiday meal can leave one feeling drained.
But you don’t have to let your personal well-being fall to the wayside by simply taking a few minutes to eat well and treat your body right. Three small business owners along the St. Lawrence River want to ensure that you do just that. Laura Cerow, owner of St. Larry’s, Monica Behan, owner of Modicum Skin Care, and Liz Price-Kellogg along with Kristen Taylor, creators of LIVE YUM, have developed the “Gratitude Goddess Holiday Gift Box” to assist with wellness during the holiday season.
Each gift box includes gratitude-inspiring products handcrafted along the St. Lawrence River from the local businesswomen.
A signed copy of “For the Love of Food and Yoga: A Celebration of Mindful Eating and Being,” by Liz Price-Kellogg and Kristen Taylor. Plus, three new LIVE Yum recipes.
Two organic essential oils from St. Larry’s, helmed by the St. Lawrence River’s remarkable Laura Cerow, that may be used in recipes from the For the Love of Food and Yoga inspirational cookbook.
MODICUM SKIN CARE
A travel size of the coveted Essential Serum from Murray Isle’s Monica Behan, owner of Modicum Skin Care! A 2015 Beauty Nominee for Martha Stewart’s American Made Awards, Modicum Skin Care nutrient system combats a multitude of skin care issues from aging to acne.
Call 523-0627 to purchase your holiday “Gratitude Goddess Holiday Gift Box” or to learn more. Each gift box is $50 to $65 value and includes sales tax. LIVE YUM will also mail your gift box to any mailing address with an enclosed LIVE YUM gift card (add $10 — flat rate for shipping). Give the gift of the river, health, wellness and gratitude this holiday season.
Editor’s note: The following list of non-chain stores is not intended as an all-inclusive shopping directory.
320 Dodge Ave., Sackets Harbor
St. Lawrence Pottery
41468 state Route 12, Clayton
The Lake Ontario Gift Shop
12279 state Route 12E, Chaumont
The Natural Basket
44144 state Route 3, Natural Bridge
136 Court St., Watertown
The 1000 Islands Cruet
226 James St., Clayton
1000 Islands River Rat Cheese
242 James St., Clayton
686-2480 or 1- (800) 752-1341
Treasure Island Jewelers
40 James St., Alexandria Bay
Karla’s Christmas Shoppe
500 Riverside Drive, Clayton
Captain Spicer’s Gallery
40467 state Route 12, Clayton
Freighters of Clayton
534 Riverside Drive, Clayton
38234 Windward Cliffs, Clayton
Liz Price-Kellogg and
Kristen Taylor, Clayton
775-7115 or 523-0627
Clayton / 1000 Islands
St. Lawrence County
Phil and Jackie’s
69 Main St., Massena
21 Main St., Canton
Seasons Specialty Gifts
27 W. Orvis St., Massena
22 Market St., Potsdam
St. Lawrence County Arts Council
41 Elm St., Room 231, Potsdam
(Downtown Snell Hall, 2nd Floor)
Brick & Mortar Music
15 Market St., Potsdam
Adirondack Fragrance & Flavor Farm
1551 Highway 72, Potsdam
Argent’s Jewelry and Coin Shop
32 Market St., Potsdam
Canton-Potsdam Gift Shop
50 Leroy St., Canton
P.O. Box 402, Hannawa Falls
Traditional Arts in Upstate New York (TAUNY) store
53 E. Main St., Canton
Maple Run Emporiums Inc.
49 Market St., Potsdam
Nolts Country Store
7189 state Route 812, Lowville
Marguerite’s Cranberry Emporium
7614 N. State St., Lowville
Cozy Country Corner
7608 North State St., Lowville
Bonaparte Candle & Gifts
7790 State Route 3, Harrisville
The Blue Bird Country Store
8311 state Route 26, Lowville
9882 state Route 12, Copenhagen
Croghan Candy Kitchen
9740 state Route 812, Croghan
Text by Lorna Oppedisano | Photos by Lauren Harrienger
For many, snowmobile culture is a way of life to beat the blues during long north country winters.
The dead of winter has the north country in its grips. Everything on the ground is some shade of gray or white. Any sign of life, save the occasional far-off bird call, has left the area. A bright, glaring sun shines down from the clear blue sky, a meek attempt at melting the heaps of snow, feet high in areas. But it’s no use. The burning ball in the sky is not a match for the crisp, almost biting, freezing winter air. It’ll be months before Northern New York breathes a gasp of warm, balmy air.
The conditions are perfect.
A machine roars to life in the distance. And then another. And another. Before long, a fleet of iron sleds races into view, caravanning across the gleaming paths carved into the snow, moving at speeds rivaling those of cars on a nearby county road. Perched atop the machines, the riders lean into the twists and turns of the trail. Each traveler is decked out from head to toe in layers of impenetrable snow gear. The sleds race in single file, and then, as suddenly as they appeared, they’re gone around the next bend, on to their destination.
Welcome to snowmobile season.
Thrills are not my forte. Adrenaline usually just makes me dizzy. I bit the bullet once and tried a rollercoaster; I can safely say that I never want to be upside-down again in my life. I’m a legs-planted-firmly-on-the-ground type of woman.
A little more than a month ago, my editor mentioned the idea of ‘beat the winter blues’ as the cover story topic. Would I write it? Of course. Would I investigate the culture of snowmobiling? Definitely. Would I get on the back of a snowmobile for the first-hand, in-depth perspective? Gulp… sure. [Read more…]
Investments in gear, equipment can be costly, but worth it
By Lorna Oppedisano
Snowmobiling is a beautiful sport. It’s a fun sport. It’s a cold sport. It can be a dangerous sport. [Read more…]
Beat the winter blues with 10 Empire State destinations each within a reasonable trek of the north country [Read more…]
CLAYTON — The visit country star Alan Jackson made in 2009 to the Antique Boat Museum must have pulled on his heartstrings. He has donated a 1955, 29-foot Chris-Craft semi-enclosed boat to the museum’s collection.
The boat, Flat Top, named after the type of steel-string guitar commonly used by Mr. Jackson, is one of 36 of the model ever built by Chris-Craft. Flat Top is the only one of its kind that has been restored to original condition.
“The museum is grateful for Mr. Jackson’s gift of this remarkable boat,” museum watercraft curator Emmett Smith said. “Boating and country music are both important parts of the American lifestyle, and Mr. Jackson is clearly someone who loves the history of both.”
Flat Top was used and stored on Lake Chautauqua in Western New York by its original owner. In 2002, Mr. Jackson purchased the boat in poor condition and transported it to Tennessee to undergo extensive restoration work at Hickman Boat Works. Under the craftsmanship of Travis Hickman, Flat Top was revived through a nearly three-year restoration project.
A museum official said Flat Top features pristine woodwork and artistry, retains its original look and is considered to be boat-show quality. The six-cylinder boat with a maximum speed of 35 mph is made of mahogany, with white oak framing and decking. It has an oak keel.
Michael J. Folsom, the museum’s director of marketing and communications, said the boat holds a significant monetary value, but that figure is confidential.
“However, once a piece becomes a part of our collection, we recognize it as priceless,” he said.
Mr. Jackson has been a longtime wooden boat enthusiast and has a good relationship with the Antique Boat Museum. In 2009, he made a trip to Clayton for the museum’s annual antique boat show and auction, through ties with local boat broker Peter Mellon of Antique Boat America, which has listed a number of Mr. Jackson’s boats for sale over the years.
In 2009, Mr. Jackson provided five antique boats to be auctioned. During his time in the Thousand Islands region that year, he also cruised with friends aboard his yacht Neon Rainbow, which was docked at the museum.
Flat Top arrived in Clayton last weekend and will remain in storage through the winter. The boat is expected to be available for viewing “in some form” during the museum’s 2014 season. Details and information will be available before the museum’s May 2 reopening.
Mr. Jackson is one of the few top country artists who write most of their own material. Among his hits are “Chattahoochee,” “Livin’ on Love,” “Murder on Music Row,” “Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning),” “Little Bitty,” “Drive,” “Remember When” and “Where I Come From.”
He performed in Watertown in 2010 as part of the DPAO/Toyota Summer Concert Series. His latest record is “The Bluegrass Album.”
Grindstone Island is a place that seems to straddle two worlds, stuck somewhere between a simple agricultural past in which children attended a one-room schoolhouse and the sole town consisted only of a post office, store and church and a modern world where summer residents occupy well-manicured farm houses and 300 eager boaters flood Potter’s Beach on a typical summer Sunday.
Driving through Grindstone’s bucolic countryside — 15-square-miles of forests, wetlands and farms interspersed with about 130 homesteads — on an ATV, the contrast is apparent, history peeking out from every orifice. The island has a private air strip, but no cars, and hard-packed, well-maintained dirt roads alternate with winding trails in various states of overgrown. But lining the road that leads up from the island’s only public dock are about 15 rusting trucks and cars, slowly becoming part of the landscape, used by some in colder times when the St. Lawrence River freezes enough make the 1.27 miles to Clayton passable. [Read more…]