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About the Lake Placid Outing Club

Outdoor Fun, Electronic-Free.

Current board members include Dave Balestrini (President), Jen Briggs (Vice President), Deb Erenstone (Treasurer), Carrie Wardlaw (Secretary), Charlie Cowan, Melanie Damico, Chris Fey, Chris McGrew, Don McMullen, and Jeff Pedu.

The Outing Club was started in 1993 by Don McMullen, in response to a high school party turned sour. It started with Wednesday hikes; the first Wednesday, a group of 6 kids went to Rocky Falls. McMullen and 12 other parent leaders helped organize eight other Wednesday hikes that summer, with a total of 23 kids. The season finale was the first of many annual Johns Brook overnights. The following year, Superintendent Jerry Blair referred to the little group as the Lake Placid Outing Club and began managing the Club’s funds. That continued for twenty years until the club became a non-profit organization.

From 1994-1997, the numbers increased to 40+, but doubled to 80 and 90+ from 1998-2006. Ever since 2007, over 100 kids have participated each year, and more recently, the Club has been supported by over 60 parent-leaders (compared to the 30-40 parents who led trips for the previous decade).  

From 2005-2010, the Outing Club led ten “Super Trips” under a federally sponsored program in which over 200 Lake Placid High School Students signed no-use contracts with their parents and voluntarily agreed to drug-testing.  Trips went to Colorado to hike and paddle twice, the Alps to ski three times, the Caribbean to sail three times, and the Bahamas to sail twice. Annual lotteries based on participation were designed to create a non-using peer group.  The Outing Club lost this grant in 2007, but recently, we have received other grant funding, and the idea of "epic trips" has returned.  

There are a few simple rules for Outing Club day trips:

  • The group stays together, within sight of a trip leader.
  • No throwing rocks
  • Have fun (Be Kind, Be Safe, Be Gentle)

The Club's 12 leadership principles, a list of Trip Leader's guidelines, detail further safety precautions and leadership instruction for parents.

Please read the Code of Conduct for overnight trips.  This must be signed by a parent for overnight adventures.

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