Niagara Gazette — The same type of quality trips were enjoyed throughout the Adirondacks, an excellent playground for the outdoors enthusiast. The Ausable River was in rare form for the writers and it seemed like everyone had fish stories to share. Local lakes and ponds were producing some nice trout, too, for those making the extra effort to sample New York’s natural resources.
A pat on the back has to go out to the state’s Division of Tourism and the Department of Environmental Conservation for getting so involved with this historic conference. The last time OWAA held a conference in New York was in 1991. I was the local conference chairman for the Niagara Falls conference and Bill, Sr. was the president of the national group – something that has never happened before or since, having a president host a conference in his home town. Our state presence was poor at best. They made up for it this time in Lake Placid.
Both agencies had booths and gift bags of information for each and every writer. Gavin Landry, Executive Director for the Tourism Division of Empire State Development, spoke at one of the dinners that the state helped sponsor. He was right on target welcoming these writer to our state and kudos to I Love NY for reaching out and touching the media in several ways. While they need a little work on the press information and what was being passed out, the important thing is that they were there and involved. New York’s outdoors needs to be a bigger part of the overall promotion effort as we move forward in the 21st century.
Our DEC was also available to the writers with Commissioner Joe Martens at the top of the list. I had the good fortune of being the moderator for a session that Martens headlined entitled: Discovering the “New” New York. I had his ear for about 10 minutes prior to the talk and he listened intently as I expressed many of our concerns concerning DEC’s press policy, concern of DEC staffing in Region 9 and much more. Hopefully he took some of this to heart.