Tuesday, July 7, 2015
Free Empire State Plaza Tours Mark Site's 50th Anniversary
Capitol Tours Continue Through the Summer
New York State Office of General Services Commissioner RoAnn M. Destito announced a new free tour that focuses on the history and design of the Empire State Plaza. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the corner stone laying for the Plaza in June 1965. The 30-minute tours start at , through , excluding holidays, through , and no registration is required. The tours start at the Empire State Plaza’s new visitor center and gift shop, located at the north end of the concourse level.
The tours feature highlights of the world-class, 98-acre complex where state government, unique architecture, and modern art share the same space. Visitors will tour the concourse, The Egg Center for the Performing Arts, and outside on the plaza’s main platform where the Capitol, Robert Abrams Building for Law and Justice, Cultural Education Center, Corning Tower, several memorials, agency buildings, and Legislative Office Building are located. Those taking the tour will also learn about the Empire State Plaza Art Collection, which is known as the largest publicly owned modern art collection in the country.
The tours are timed so that visitors can join a walking tour of the state Capitol just before or after they have explored the plaza. People are also encouraged to see the Empire State Plaza at 50 exhibit currently on view at the New York State Museum.
(And, while you're out, make a tour trifecta with a stop at the State Capitol and Corning Tower)
Free Capitol Tours Summer Schedule
OGS will continue to offer tours of the Capitol this summer. Traditional Capitol tours are offered through at , , , and There are no public tours on Saturdays, Sundays, or holidays. All tours begin at the base of the Senate staircase on the Capitol’s first floor and last approximately 45 minutes to an hour.
Reservations are required for groups of 10 or more and can be made online at www.ogs.ny.gov or by calling(518) 474-2418. In addition, visitors may download a self-guided audio tour to use while visiting the state Capitol.
A special tour of the Capitol titled “A Flag for the Ages, Abraham Lincoln and the New York State Capitol” is also being offered the first of each month from July through September. The hour-long tour starts at in the Capitol’s State Street lobby. Space is limited, so people are encouraged to register in advance online at www.empirestateplaza.org or by calling (518) 473-7582.
Visitors to the Capitol will be required to pass through metal detectors and have any bags scanned through an x-ray machine. Personal belongings such as backpacks and large bags should not be brought on the tour. Sharp objects, such as pocket knives and nail clippers will not be allowed into the building.
For more information, call the Plaza Visitor Center at (518) 474-2418, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thursday, July 2, 2015
DEC Campground Features Added to New York's Free Fishing, Hunting, Wildlife App
App Allows User to Easily Access Information on Activities at Adirondack and Catskill Campgrounds
Just in time for the summer season, new and enhanced features, including information on Adirondack and Catskill campgrounds, are now available on the official New York Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife free mobile application (App), outgoing New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Joe Martens Thursday announced. All DEC campgrounds are now included on the free App, complete with full information on locations, amenities, activities and GPS directions.
“This tool is a great use of technology and the perfect customer service enhancement,” said Commissioner Martens. “More and more of our visitors each year use smart phones and this App provides accurate, up-to-date information to explore the outdoors. We are grateful to our partners at Parks By Nature who developed this resource – at no cost to the taxpayers and free to the public to download.”
DEC campgrounds in the Adirondack and Catskill Forest Preserves offer unmatched opportunities to enjoy nature with attractions ranging from swimming, paddling, bicycling, fishing, hiking and boating to wildlife exploration and much more. The App is designed to provide everything a visitor would need to become familiar with a property, including contact information, directions, amenities, maps and events. Information is updated regularly in partnership with DEC.
Users can search by location and desired activity to find locations near them to go fishing, hunting, basic hiking information for campground trails and now camping. Users can locate New York’s fishing, hunting and wilderness sites and gain immediate access to on-the-spot species profiles, rules and regulations, and important permits and licensing details. Advanced GPS technology enhances any trek through the woods which allows the user to record trails and use waypoints and photo waypoints to mark traps and keep track of wildlife sightings.
The New York Fish & Wildlife App is part of Governor Cuomo’s NY Open for Fishing and Hunting Initiative. DEC developed the App in partnership with Parks By Nature Network at no cost to the state. The App is available for free download in the iTunes App Store and the Android Market for use on iPhone and Android devices. To date, more than 75,000 users have downloaded the App.
Governor Cuomo has expanded recreational opportunities of residents and tourists, positioning New York State as a recreation destination, connecting communicates to state lands, and improving the quality of life. Governor Cuomo’s NY Open for Fishing and Hunting Initiative is an effort to improve recreational opportunities for sportsmen and women and to boost tourism activities throughout the state. This includes streamlining fishing and hunting licenses, reducing license fees, improving access for fishing and increasing hunting opportunities in New York State. In support of this initiative, last year $10 million in NY Works funding has been dedicated to fish hatchery repairs and 50 new land and water access projects such as boat launches, hunting blinds, trails and parking areas.
Under the initiative, the 2015-16 Enacted Budget included an additional $8 million for state land access projects and an additional $4 million for the state's hatcheries in NY Works funding. The Budget also creates a new capital account which along with federal Pittman-Robertson funds will be used to manage, protect and restore fish and wildlife habitat, and to improve and develop public access for fish and wildlife-related recreation.
For more information on the NY Fishing, Hunting & Wildlife App, including the YouTube video link on how to use the advanced GPS mapping and friend finder options, visit DEC’s website at http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/
Wednesday, June 17, 2015
Path Through History Activities June 20, 21 in Albany County
at the Ten Broeck Mansion, 9 Ten Broeck Pl, Albany, NY 12210
Learn about chess around the world from its origins in India to the game changer of chess computers and everything in between.
at , Suggested donation of $5.
Wednesday, June 10, 2015
New Zip Lining Attraction Set to Open in Lake George This Summer
"The more than 3,450-foot zip line, one of the country’s longest, will rush dare-devils down French Mountain at speeds up to 55 mph...The ride has a roughly 1,000-foot vertical drop and will consist of four cables strung between two tall towers, near the top and bottom. People will be shuttled to the top on an unpaved wood road."
The ride, being set up by the father of the "Karate Kid", is set to open this summer. You can read more here.
TSA Internal Test Showed 67 of 70 Failed to Find Explosives, Weapons
In our post-9/11 world, these airport checks have become the norm. But a recent report showed that the majority - the vast majority - of tests were successful in bringing hazardous items like weapons and explosives onto planes despite going through security.
Removing shoes, going through potentially harmful X-rays, throwing out a perfectly good bottle of water - apparently these things are not only annoying, they're ineffective.
A lot of these points were brought up in a recent Washington Post column by Petula Dvorak - I'd recommend it.