What are your ideas?

We were surprised when Gov. Andrew Cuomo wandered into the Enterprise office on Dec. 28. We were happy he asked about how business was going and seemed genuinely interested in our area and helping attract tourism.

We’re sure the people running every Adirondack business would love to tell him what keeps them up at night and the challenges they face. He seems quite at home when he’s in Saranac Lake and Lake Placid, and he probably would love to hear our ideas. Meanwhile, he gave us something to think about – some feedback as an Albany visitor.

The governor is right about Saranac Lake’s Winter Carnival being a great event that attracts people. He asked what other events could be developed like it.

Many anchor events bring their own following, such as the loyal participants and fans of the Ironman triathlon, the Lake Placid Horse Shows and the Can-Am Rugby tournament.

Others, like Winter Carnival and Tupper Lake’s Woodsmen’s Days, attract locals and visitors from a broader spectrum, with positive word-of-mouth buzz coming from people who had fun there.

As we try to attract more people here, let’s ask ourselves what sets our hometowns apart. The best way to do this is to ask why residents love living here and why visitors come here. We may be surprised what we learn.

There are many assets we tout, such as waterways, mountains, forests, trails, sports facilities, shopping, art, music, history, colleges and research facilities, good schools and welcoming people. How do people prioritize these? What else do they mention? Are we promoting these things effectively?

We’d like to hear from you and encourage you to comment online or by email about what ideas you have to help the area’s economy.