The Warren County Department of Planning and Community Development has launched a collaboration with Cliff & Redfield Interactive (CRI), a Saratoga Springs-based rich-media communications organization, for a year-long campaign to promote community development and heritage tourism in the First Wilderness Heritage Corridor of western Warren County.
Running from Stony Creek to North Creek, the First Wilderness unites the communities of the Upper Hudson River and Schroon River corridors, communities that share a common bond in the settlement of the region. It includes the towns of Stony Creek, Thurman, Warrensburg, Chester, Johnsburg, Lake Luzerne/Hadley, and Horicon.
The Warren County Board of Supervisors recently approved the agreement, through which CRI will bring together experts and student writers in Zoom for 60-minute “civic conversations” focused on the history of western Warren County and issues related to its community development. Serving as “cohost/reporters,” students will use a speech-to-text transcriber to process the recorded interviews and publish articles on a platform that the county and CRI are developing at StoriesFromOpenSpace.org.
The conversations will be live-streamed to the public on the Stories from Open Space YouTube channel.
The first civic conversation occurred on February 4th, featuring Warren County Planning Department staff members Wayne LaMothe, Ethan Gaddy, and Sara Frankenfeld. Additional sessions will be announced in the near future.
All of the CRI resources devoted to the project, including the time and expertise of CRI founder and editor Dan Forbush and managing director Bill Walker, are being provided without cost to Warren County.
Among specific project goals are to:
• Engage storytellers and experts in describing the unique character of western Warren County in Stories from Open Space;
• Add rich content through which the county can draw audiences to its web platforms;
• Create for area college and high school students professional experiences in communications and opportunities for networking with leaders and experts in areas of potential career interest;
• Produce for the Warren County Historical Society a manuscript that contributes to the body of historical knowledge of Warren County and the surrounding region.
Students may participate as credit-earning interns or volunteers. Further information for students and teachers can be found at Smartacus.com.
Others who have agreed to participate in future civic conversations include representatives of the New York Department of Environmental Conservation, the Warren County Historical Society, Adirondack Wild, the Kelly Adirondack Center at Union College, and members of the Apperson, Schaefer, and Zahniser families, whose ancestors played major roles in the preservation and recreational uses of the Adirondack wilderness.