Nature Studies & Outdoor Skills



Introduction to Fly Tying

Paul Sinicki

This is a fun and relaxing art that helps keep your fingers nimble and creative ideas flowing. This class is designed to help beginners learn to place materials on a fishing hook and the intermediate tiers to hone their skills. The flys to be tied in the class will be determined by the skill of the students. Materials used in the class will be natural and synthetic. We will also go over different tools and substitutes used. If you have your own fly-tying tools please bring them, if you do not have a tying kit, one will be provided to use.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $45
         Non-members: $55
  • Materials: $15
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $60 (members)         $70 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Half Day

Sessions:

1543-0314    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat March 14, 2020 9:00 am - 12:00 pm




A Beekeeping Journey: Being the Beekeeper

Tim Norray

The journey into beekeeping continues! This is the second part in our exciting 3-part series in successfully becoming a beekeeper. Grandpa used to say, "plan the work and work the plan" and that is what this class is all about. Learn the different designs of beehives, and build your own frames, build your beehive boxes and even the covers. Learn how to find the best location for your apiary, and what should be around for them to succeed and make you honey. We will cover pest management and options on harvesting honey. This is a very hands-on course, but no special woodworking skills are required. You will go home with your own wooden beehive ready to be painted. As a special bonus, you will get the family recipe and a quick lesson on making the best honey butter around. Instructor Tim Norray from Black Sheep Honey company will be back again and this time teaming up with our in-house woodworking expert Jim Schreiner.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $45
         Non-members: $55
  • Materials: $75
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $120 (members)         $130 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Half Day

Sessions:

1554-0328    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat March 28, 2020 9:00 am - 1:00 pm




Herbal Approaches to Lyme

Amy Cason

Don't let ticks ruin your outdoor activities! Lyme, co infections and herbal antibiotics are just some of the things we will be discussing in this class. Learn about a comprehensive herbal plan that can help, herbal formulas that boost the immune system helping protect you, and after bite teas and creams. We will talk about many of the complexities that come along with Lyme and find out why herbs can work in spite of these complexities.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $85
         Non-members: $105
  • Materials: $45
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $130 (members)         $150 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Sessions:

1707-0403    Add registration to shopping cart
      Fri April 3, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm




Fly Fishing - Casting Basics

Paul Sinicki

The goal of this class is to help you get started in fly fishing or better your casting. We will go over different types of fly rods and when to use them. The proper way of lining a fly rod will be taught. You will be doing the over hand cast, roll cast and side arm cast, for a few examples. You will need to bring a hat and a pair of glasses or sunglasses. If you have a fly rod please bring it, otherwise one will be provided. To end, students will get a chance to try different fly rods.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $45
         Non-members: $55
  • Materials: $10
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $55 (members)         $65 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Half Day

This is an active casting course. Students 16 or older who have a NYS fishing license can cast into the lake. Those without will cast on dry land. Students must bring a hat and glasses to wear for safety.

Sessions:

1544-0418    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat April 18, 2020 9:00 am - 12:00 pm




Herbal Approaches to Pain

Amy Cason

Chronic pain is one of the most common daily problems in our nation today. This class will look at using a holistic approach to eliminate the pain from our lives as opposed to using prescribed narcotics to suppress the pain. We will look at some of the causes of pain and inflammation in our daily lives and discuss a multitude of options for dealing with them. Different foods that can help along with herbs and other natural therapies that the students can incorporate into their daily lives, will be discussed and made.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $85
         Non-members: $105
  • Materials: $45
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $130 (members)         $150 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Sessions:

1592-0419    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sun April 19, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1592-1009    Add registration to shopping cart
      Fri October 9, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm




A Beekeeping Journey: Your Own Apiary

Tim Norray

Take the step from "want-a-bee" to being a real beekeeper! Yes, this is the exciting day you get to play with live bees. Learn how to successfully introduce your bees into your hive box. We will actually be installing bees at the school, so you can see how it's done. You will learn how to find the queen, and how to handle frames of bees without getting them upset. You will need to bring your bee veil or jacket and gloves and be ready to get up close and personal with some of the most amazing insects ever. You will learn how to light your beehive smoker and keep it going and learn when the best time is to check your hive. You will be receiving your own bees in a started 5 frame nuc box which will be ready for you to introduce into your own equipment at your own apiary. Start off with some of the best genetic lines of honeybees around which have been proven to do well in our area. Instructor Tim Norray from Black Sheep Honey company will be taking you through the steps to make sure you are ready to enjoy your new hive. He even gives you his home phone number in case you have any bee related questions down the road.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $45
         Non-members: $55
  • Materials: $175
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $220 (members)         $230 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Half Day

Sessions:

1555-0425    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat April 25, 2020 9:00 am - 1:00 pm




Hike the Adirondacks

Elaine Winslow

Lace up your boots and grab your hiking stick and backpack! The snow has melted and it's time to wander the nature trail on Potash Mountain. Let's enjoy a couple of hours while seeking the sights and sounds of early spring.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $45
         Non-members: $55
  • Course Length: 1 Half Day

This off-site offering is suitable for students 12 years of age and up. Students will meet at the Adirondack Folk School and then proceed to the hiking destination by car. NOTE: Take the "Make a Walking Stick" class on 4/24 and enjoy using your hand-made stick!

Sessions:

1699-0425    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat April 25, 2020 10:00 am - 1:00 pm




Seasonal Attunement - An Herbal Primer

Margo Mullein

Come join in the dance of mother nature as she cycles through the seasons. When we turn to the plants for balance, wholeness and health we need to work with them at their peak. In this course we will fine tune our observation skills so that we can walk their walk and talk their talk to understand the language of the landscape. We'll start outdoors to create a "Medicine Wheel" from natural objects. This sustainable blueprint will become our teaching/contemplation tool as we take an in-depth look at each season and the life cycle of beneficial botanicals. We'll harvest plants from the wild and return to the course room for the hands-on portion of our class to make and take our own seasonally attuned herbal preparations. In Spring - we'll make Plant Infused Oils, Vinegars & Butters. During Summer - Make your own Bug Repellent, Bite Balm & Salad Dressings. For Fall - Exfoliating Scrubs for Face, and Body. In Winter - Breathe Deep Salve. This class is offered once per season for a complete study of the wheel and the life cycle of plants, but each class does stand on its own.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $85
         Non-members: $105
  • Materials: $45
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $130 (members)         $150 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Dress for the outdoors, as we will be spending time with nature. What we make during the first class will be woven into the herbal preparations for additional offerings. A seasonally inspired lunch will be prepared for you, so please let us know of any food allergies or dietary restrictions.

Sessions:

1597-0510    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat May 2, 2020 10:00 am - 4:30 pm

1597-0725    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat July 18, 2020 10:00 am - 4:30 pm

1597-0926    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat September 26, 2020 10:00 am - 4:30 pm

1597-1219    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat December 19, 2020 10:00 am - 4:30 pm




Foraging for Edible Plants

Amy Cason

The ability to provide for ourselves is a skill you don't want to find out the hard way that you lack. The ability to use plants in our daily lives can be a fun hobby or a matter of survival. In this class we will walk through the woods and identify edible plants available in our area and most of the north east. While we walk, we will discuss how herbs can be incorporated into our meals.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $85
         Non-members: $105
  • Materials: $45
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $130 (members)         $150 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Sessions:

1709-0503    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sun May 3, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1709-0708    Add registration to shopping cart
      Wed July 8, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1709-0803    Add registration to shopping cart
      Mon August 3, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm




Native Plants and Their Uses

Amy Cason

This class is designed to help students learn to use north eastern native plants. Fifteen natives and their uses will be discussed. Foundational concepts discussed will include the importance of positive identification as well as walks to get familiar with individual plants, harvest preservation and preparation techniques, ethical wild crafting and more.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $85
         Non-members: $105
  • Materials: $45
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $130 (members)         $150 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Sessions:

1708-0504    Add registration to shopping cart
      Mon May 4, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1708-0709    Add registration to shopping cart
      Thu July 9, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1708-0804    Add registration to shopping cart
      Tue August 4, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm




Fairy Lore: Stories, Poems & Houses

Margo Nelson

Let the everyday slip away on this imaginative walk along the River Trail of the Adirondack Folk School. Drawing from Celtic lore, we'll weave a tale about Fairies, while connecting the dots between the Faerie folk of Ireland and the Adirondacks. We'll start with creating a house out of natural objects, both provided and found, for the Fairies of the Forest and end with sitting around the fire listening to the stories of the Fairy Tree Trail of Ardgillan Castle in Ireland, the Cottingley Fairies of England and a poem or two by Adirondack Mountain Poet, Jeanne Robert Foster. Enchanted tea and Fairy Bread will be served.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $45
         Non-members: $55
  • Materials: $5
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $50 (members)         $60 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Half Day

Fairy Houses created in this workshop are temporary structures intended and designed to remain in the Forest of the River Trail, and not to be taken home.

Sessions:

1596-0531    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sun May 31, 2020 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm




Woodland Fairy Houses

Bart Pisha

Legend has it that Fairies still dwell in mountains and forests everywhere, and the Adirondacks are no exception to this. While I've not yet seen any of them, it's clear that the chilly winters of our region pose a special challenge to these elusive beings. Particularly during the colder months, but also year-round, they need shelter from prying eyes and from the elements as well. Participants in this course will help meet this need by constructing imaginative Fairy houses and furniture of materials found in the forest or from home. Using twine and hot-melt glue these structures will be built on cardboard sheets allowing them to be readily transported to one's home or any glade where Fairies congregate.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $85
         Non-members: $105
  • Materials: $$6 - $32
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $85 (members)         $105 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Materials Fee Options: 1) $6.00 if you bring your own glue gun. 2) $16.00 includes a mini 110v glue gun with glue sticks. 3) $32 includes a full-size 110v glue gun with glue sticks. Please contact AFS for materials pricing and to state your choice.

Sessions:

1634-0606    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat June 6, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1634-0919    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat September 19, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm




Introduction to Herbalism

Amy Cason

Herbalism is an art unique unto itself. There are many aspects to be considered when we begin learning such an art. In this class we will cover the fundamentals. Students will learn the importance of names, different types of herb preparations and why to use each method. Sustainable sourcing of herbs and the responsibilities of using plants will also be covered. Ten native and common herbs will be discussed in detail and supplied. Thorough discussions on these plants will allow students to start learning the properties of plants and their uses.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $85
         Non-members: $105
  • Materials: $45
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $130 (members)         $150 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Sessions:

1589-0624    Add registration to shopping cart
      Wed June 24, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1589-0811    Add registration to shopping cart
      Tue August 11, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm




How Herbs Work

Amy Cason

Take an in depth look at how herbs function within the body. We'll take a walk back through history and view some of the theories about the use and effectiveness of plants as well as some of the more modern understandings of plants. We will also look at situations that can cause herbs to work less effectively than they should.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $85
         Non-members: $105
  • Materials: $45
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $130 (members)         $150 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Sessions:

1590-0625    Add registration to shopping cart
      Thu June 25, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1590-0812    Add registration to shopping cart
      Wed August 12, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm




Herbal Preparations to Enhance Efficiency

Amy Cason

Let's look at some of the factors that affect the efficiency and strength of our herbs, as well as the forgiving nature of plants. We will take an in depth look at various herbal preparations, the type of plants used in them, which parts of the plant are best to use for a truly effective product and how to best care for them so they maintain potency. We will talk about common herb preparations like Echinacea tincture and learn why herbs should be prepared in specific ways according to their desired effect. A look at the ideal use of herbal tonics and essential oils will help to understand many of the herbal products around us.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $85
         Non-members: $105
  • Materials: $45
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $130 (members)         $150 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Sessions:

1591-0626    Add registration to shopping cart
      Fri June 26, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

1591-0813    Add registration to shopping cart
      Thu August 13, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm




Herbal First Aid Kit

Christine Eberhardt

Natural medicine is everywhere, it even grows up through the cracks of sidewalks! In this class you make your own basic herbal first aid kit. This beginner's 101 kit will include different types of herbal salves, a liniment, capsules and more, which can then be used to administer a first line of defense.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $45
         Non-members: $55
  • Materials: $35
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $80 (members)         $90 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Half Day

Sessions:

1603-0621    Add registration to shopping cart
      Fri June 26, 2020 1:00 pm - 4:30 pm




Build a Rustic Birdhouse

Don Polunci

Anyone can learn to make a rustic birdhouse in just a few hours. A birdhouse is a simple structure with seven basic parts: two sides, a front and back, a bottom, and two pieces for the top. Power tools are not necessary to cut the wood; it can be done with a handsaw. Using rough-cut lumber, you will construct a rustic birdhouse that can be functional and/or decorative. Choose from several birdhouse designs. There will be a short discussion about nesting birds, feeding birds, and suitable houses for area birds. Participants are encouraged to bring objects (such as old drawer pulls, doorknobs, hardware, etc.) from home. Adults and teens welcome; children ages 10-14 must be accompanied by an adult.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $45
         Non-members: $55
  • Materials: $10
  • Total course cost due at registration time: $55 (members)         $65 (nonmembers)
  • Course Length: 1 Half Day

Students should wear older clothing and/or bring an apron to class.

Sessions:

1547-0711    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat July 11, 2020 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

1547-0822    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat August 22, 2020 9:00 am - 12:00 pm




Outdoor Shelters

David Cornelius

Spend a day with Native Dave constructing a variety of shelters for outdoor living. Working with both manufactured and natural materials you will learn how to make 5 shelters for woodland settings. This class will include discussion on the appropriate choice of one shelter versus another for the terrain, and discussion on how to build fires. Dress appropriately for weather, as this class takes place outdoors.

  • Location: AFS, 51 Main Street, Lake Luzerne, NY
  • Tuition:
         Members: $105
         Non-members: $125
  • Course Length: 1 Day

Students should dress for the weather as this class takes place outside.

Sessions:

1714-0926    Add registration to shopping cart
      Sat September 26, 2020 9:00 am - 4:00 pm