March 31, 2020, Blue Mountain Lake, NY
In response to the novel coronavirus, which has closed the doors of all cultural organizations across New York State, Adirondack Experience (ADKX) will reach out to audiences in 2020 virtually rather than welcoming them to its campus in Blue Mountain Lake.
“It is unclear at this time whether the compulsory closing of public gathering places will be lifted in time for the July – August period when we see most of our visitors,” said David Kahn, ADKX Executive Director. “Our concern for the health and safety of our staff and visitors outweighs our desire to provide in-person programming this season. The current uncertainty also makes it impossible for us to hire seasonal staff who operate our gift shop and café, our boating experience and children’s programs, as well as engaging visitors in our galleries.”
ADKX plans to keep its entire year-round staff on the payroll during this difficult period. “Our staff is one of the pillars of the Adirondack Experience,” said ADKX board co-chairs Rob Searle and Anne Van Ingen. “Although this may challenge us financially, we recognize that our wonderful staff’s talent and passion will ensure our future success. Even in this most difficult time, they have been generating new and creative ideas to keep our audiences informed and excited with virtual programming.”
The ADKX staff is already at work developing plans for virtual programming through the end of 2020, making the ADKX’s world-class collections and experts accessible to the public in new ways. Each year, the ADKX provides free programming to over 11,000 school children in their classrooms and onsite. The staff will now offer students the opportunity to learn at home. Online lectures, workshops, and other programs will be developed for adult audiences and soon complement virtual exhibitions. In addition, as the key stewards of the Adirondacks’ cultural and social records, ADKX curators have already begun documenting the impact of the coronavirus on the North Country’s people and businesses. While visitors may not be able to come to the ADKX this season, the ADKX will come to them in new and exciting ways.