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Shandaken promotes Heritage Tourism with history kiosks

Chief Winnisook (Big Indian) and nature writer John Burroughs are two of the many attractions of Shandaken.
Chief Winnisook (Big Indian) and nature writer John Burroughs are two of the many attractions of Shandaken.
Dave Channon

On Shandaken Day, August 23, eight large graphic panels outlining the history and culture of Shandaken will be unveiled. Designed by Dave Channon, this kiosk holds everything you need to know about native myths, artist pioneers, iron horses of old, and even the swimming holes of today. The panels of history, mystery, places to play and places to stay are all mounted on a rustic structure built by local volunteers and supervised by Town Supervisor Rob Stanley. It is the first of four such installations planned for Shandaken.

Reading these panels you’ll learn all about the legend of Chief Winnisook, the original Big Indian; how to forage into our natural environment in the footsteps of nature writer John Burroughs, the original tree hugger; which hikes will help you find the nooks and crannies of the Catskill Preserve; and all about the gravitational anomalies in Oliverea caused by a prehistoric Panther Mountain meteor.

And that is just the beginning. Want to learn more? You’ll read how Jake Moon became a Peekamoose and how not to get lost in the woods, as well as many other interesting facts about Shandaken. Reading these panels is like having a native as your personal tour guide through the largest town in Ulster County. What a fun and informative way to promote Heritage Tourism.

Heritage tourism includes cultural, historic and natural resources, and is consistently among the most popular and lucrative forms of tourism. Heritage tourists – people who travel to experience the places, artifacts, and activities that authentically represent the stories and people of the past and present – typically stay in places longer and spend several times more money than other tourists. Facts aside – heritage tourists simply have more fun!

The visitor information kiosk unveiling is a special event of Shandaken Day in Big Indian Park on Rte. 28 in Shandaken, Saturday, August 23, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. For information about this historic and up-to-date look at Shandaken, contact Dave Channon 845-688-2977 or