Centrally located on Route 28 the Strand is a throwback to the cinemas of decades ago. The classic facade is apparently on a registry of historic places. Until recently, it had not gone digital and still used film in its four small theaters with total occupancy of about 700. And if one has the time ( we didn't ) the owners have accumulated a small museum of old projectors and other hardware from the early years of movie theaters. Slow down while driving by and take a look at the front of the building, not many like it anymore.
Old Forge Activities
Images 1,2 - The Enchanted Forest Water Safari is the largest theme park in the state of New York, over 60 acres with 50 rides and attractions including 32 water rides, amusement park classics, and a small circus, costumed characters, and of course food. Intended for a multiple hour stay, all inclusive tickets run $35-40 with free parking. I did not visit, but plenty of people did - the large parking lot was filled by 1000. It opened in 1956 with 35 employees and an emphasis on wood crafts and a $1 admission, 25 cents for kids. New owners in the 1970s progressively expanded the park and added the water features. There are at least 15 eateries, none healthy. The same company owns the adjacent Calypso Cove with miniature golf, bumper cards, rock climbing, an arcade, and lots more unhealthy dining. The Enchanted Forest Water Safari ticket is all inclusive, Calypso Cove is entrance free with a charge for each attraction.
On the northern margin of Old Forge is a lake not included in the Fulton Chain lined by nice summer cottages ( image 3 ) and home base for a number of pontoon boats available for tour ( image 4 ). This lake is also the home for a US mail boat, one of the few still functioning in the United States, as many of the homes are accessed only with difficulty by car, if at all. The Old Forge lake itself features a small beach right next to the eastern end of the main business district (image 5 ).
In a land of lakes and ponds, the Fulton Chain of Lakes is the most famous - but they are all scenic. They are named for Stephen Fulton, inventor of the steamboat, who dreamed of connecting all by a steamboat capable channel. The chain begins at the dam for the Lake at Old Forge and extends east almost all the way to Raquette Lake, 16 miles. They are named unsurprisingly First through Eighth, most connected by narrow channels, and drain to the North Branch of the Moose River. Only two connections require portage. The Fourth Lake is at the village of Inlet, the non-connected lakes further east, so Inlet is a convenient stopping point and cute little village. For kayak and canoe enthusiasts, islands in several of the lakes and some shorelines have campsites.
The Middle Branch of the Moose is a popular kayaking and rafting site, with the major company in tiny village of Thendara just west of Old Forge.
Most of the lakes are visible from winding State 28 but without access as private summer cottages of varying luxury or impenetrable forests line the banks. They are reached from narrow roads off the main highway but motor boats are a major component of lake travel. An exception is the large Seventh Lake where a pullover is available on highway 28 for photographs, said to be the best view in the central region, source of the multiple images included. For tourists, flat bottom pontoon boats are available for lake trips, several in Old Forge.
Visit the Webb Museum
We are suckers for these little museums that have all the towns' memorabilia and trinkets and try to make interesting displays from stuff that happened locally many years ago. This old Victorian mansion on Main Street in Old Forge opened its doors and welcomed us.
This museum is an old restored home with several rooms of stuff. It is called the Goodsell Museum (the house was the Goodsell family residence) and displays the items that were supplied by the Webb township's historical society. There also is a room of documents and filing cabinets of records for those interested in genealogical information.
Displays showed the pictures and maps of the logging industry that had been important to the area. There were momentos and examples of cottage industries (wood-working, basket-making, quilting); old photos of the railroad bringing tourists to this recreational area in the woods. The fire of the early 1900s, the change of the industry from logging to tourism, the impact of acid rain to the area; these events are all documented here with photos and newspaper clippings and maps and diaries.
The house is open from 10am to 3pm, except for Sunday and Monday.
There is no admission fee but donations go to the historical society to help maintain the museum.
There are items on sale like the postcard book "Old Forge, Gateway to the Adirondacks" which is pictured here.
- Historical Travel
- Road Trip
Bald mountain [rondaxe]
Great hike with awsome views of the fulton chain lakes. They are also rebuilding the fire tower look out at the summit. Check it out this hike is a must.
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