Tag Archives: state parks

A Zoo Or Park Is Not Nature

Recently the state environmental department announced plans to control an introduced species, which is on the verge of becoming seriously invasive.   In the areas where it’s currently established itself, it caused serious damage wetland and aquatic plants, has displaced – and often attacks – native species, created public health hazards, and injuries to the public.  Once confined to a relatively small area of the state in limited numbers, over the past few years it has spread to new areas, and numbers are increasing.  The state plans to reduce this population in the wild to zero over the next ten years.  Pretty open and shut, right?  Not really, since all such plans have a “public comment period” attached to them, and there’s a good percentage of people against it.

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Filed under Parks, Politics, Science

Wandering The Woods

Most of my summer is spent outdoors, and occasionally I remember to bring a camera with me. Here are some of the things I found interesting. This is in early spring, a place called “Buttermilk Falls.”
Buttermilk Falls
It’s a popular destination, since it’s only a 100 yard hike in from the parking area.

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The Things I’ve Learned From Campers

Having worked on campgrounds, as well as having various family members and friends who have, you have a large number of stories to tell.  At any gathering,  tales are shared of the things that were run into at one point or another.   It can start with “You wouldn’t believe this one!” followed by “Oh yeah, I had that, and then there was…”  As we sometimes say, you can’t make this up.  I’ve taken a selection of them (no, not all happened to me), and made them into the “lessons” I learned from various campers.  Helpful hint:  Don’t do any of these!

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Filed under Humor, Parks

Relocking the “locked box”

A couple of news stories over at the Albany Times-Union caught my attention.   The first ties in with my recent posting on parks, with the suggestion that a dedicated fund be created for state parks.  The second one talks about how the State Museum has had to make cut-backs.  How are these two linked?  The reason the State Museum has problems is because it had a dedicated fund:

But rather than setting aside money in the fat years, state leaders raided the fund.

Starting in 2005, the Cultural Education Account was used to subsidize the New York State Theatre Institute, sending $13.8 million to the Troy-based troupe over the past five years. Gov. David Paterson’s administration took over NYSTI earlier this year after the state Inspector General concluded that Patricia Snyder, the organization’s producing director, engaged in questionable spending and runaway nepotism. NYSTI’s production of “A Christmas Carol” next month is expected to be its last.

The account also sent $2.9 million in subsidies to The Egg, and had $7.2 million redirected to the state’s general fund between 2002 and 2008.

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Thinking about parks

As readers of this blog may have gathered, I’m something of a “park maven.”   This year, there was a huge outcry when it was announced that various parks and campgrounds around the state would be closed to cut the budget.   After much debate and political maneuvering, funding was found and restored to keep them open the parks this year.   As I pointed out in earlier postings, it does nothing to address next year – or the future.   For the past couple of years, it’s been a round of battles to keep various parks and campgrounds open, followed by a stopgap measure to keep the system limping along.  It doesn’t do much to address the actual problems that the park systems face.

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Filed under Parks