WOW, the volume of responses to the "Schroeters/Schroeders name change controversy" was amazing! To many locals it was a non-issue but you Saranac Lakers around the world showed us that the careless disregard of our long-standing traditions will not be tolerated. What's in a name? As you stated in your letters, PLENTY!!! I see that some of you even took the time to send letters to the editor of the Enterprise to prove that point! This has inspired me to create this forum to air your concerns, gripes and suggestions for resolving issues in your hometown. Technology is now providing you with a way to keep your fingers on the pulse of Saranac Lake from your home (or office) and, as I see from your email, many of you are utilizing that option. The more perceptive of you are acquiring information on local issues before even some local residents are aware of them. THE ADIRONDACK DAILY ENTERPRISE, WNBZ RADIO, WPTZ TV and the PLATTSBURG PRESS-REPUBLICAN are providing us with a great service by assimilating the news of the area and putting it on-line, where it can conveniently be accessed. Your emails confirm the fact that you are concerned about Saranac Lake's future.

Every year Saranac Lake loses many valuable citizens when a large percentage of the graduates of Saranac Lake school system leave the area in order to seek employment opportunities elsewhere. The village of Saranac Lake and the surrounding forests, lakes, rivers and mountains remain in your hearts and thoughts, however. I glean from your email that most of you still have family and friends residing in Saranac Lake and return often to visit, own land here, are considering retiring in the area or would like to eventually operate a small business here. A few of you have resettled here already! These connections to Saranac Lake give you a legitimate reason to air your opinions and offer suggestions concerning the future of your hometown and what can be done to improve the economy while maintaining our small town atmosphere. You have a stake in what happens here. Those of you who have taken a few steps away often have a better perspective of the local situation than we who are in the midst of it all.

As you well know, in spite of the current scarcity of financial opportunities and the dark cloud of rising taxes, there is still no better place to raise a family than the Saranac Lake area. We have an excellent school system, including two top-notch colleges, a modern and efficient health care facility and year round recreational opportunities for the whole family. Saranac Lake has a great history and I believe we have a great future. The key to that future may lie hidden in our past, however. Make your voice heard through letters to the editor and postings on this page. Send in your opinions and suggestions on current issues and maybe you can help create a little "Thunder In The Mountains".

Here are a few of your responses to the Enterprise on the Schroeter's issue.

Letters to the Editor

On the bowling alley and Schroeter's
To the editor:

I am an ex-Saranac Laker who has just read about the Bowling Alley being reopened. Since my family did the origi­nal make-over in the late 1950s, I have been very sad to hear about the disrepair the place had fallen into. At one time the Mar-Mac was one of the nicer places in town, the snack bar, lounge and the bowling alley. I hope the citi­zens support the new renova­tion like they did my parents.

I have also read the name Schroeder's Field. I played lit­tle league next to Schroeter's Restaurant and was friends with George Schroeter, the son. Is this a misspelling or have they really changed the name? I do like the Web version of the paper and see one of my classmates, Bob Seidenstein, as a columnist. He always did have a lot to say and was usu­ally right on target.

Jim McClay

Tallahassee, Fla.

It's Schroeter's Field
To the editor:

While growing up in Saranac Lake, I was a member of Dew Drop Morgan's "Little Yankees" Little League team. We played our games on Ampersand Avenue at SchroeTer's Field adjacent to SchroeTer's Restaurant. Now I read that games are played at SchroeDer's Field. Is this a new field or has SchroeTer's Field, for some reason, been renamed SchroeDer's Field?

John Pedroni

Virginia Beach, Va.

Remember our roots
To the editor:

We native Saranac Lakers are really getting fed up with the "NEW" so-called Saranac Lakers changing all that made Saranac Lake a desirable place to live. Some with no backbone stole our beloved Redskins from us. A minority, mind you. Another minority of aliens are doing everything possible to keep our town from having a place to shop for groceries and clothing because they have their little specialty shops and we should shop there whether we like it or not. Sound famil­iar?

No one forced them to move to OUR area, but they came and decided to change it to fit their lifestyle. What about our lifestyle? Now they are chang­ing the name of Schroeter's field to Schroeder's field. We all played ball there as children growing up here and have fond memories of George and his family allowing us to use their hose when we were hot and their garage when it rained. Their name was SHROETER. What next? If you weren't born here, don't call yourself natives.

Maybe all of us old-timers should contact the Minutemen to guard our borders. By the way, no one had a problem with Ames being in North Elba. Is it just Wal-Mart? Conflict of interest, anyone? Downtown is great if you like pizza, subs or alcohol. Enough is enough. I'm sorry I brought my family back here to enjoy what was a beautiful, caring town of beautiful, caring peo­ple. You can have it. Tony Anderson and Bill Wallace must be rolling over in their graves, among others, if they are allowed to do that in our NEW TOWN.

William Huggins


Why was Schroeter’s spelling changed?
Schroeter’s Restaurant was replaced in my absence by Schroeter’s Field, where the present generation of Redskins — oops, make that Red Storms — struggle for glory in athletics. Now I read that the Schroeters are retroactively having their names changed to Schroeder. I am very proud of my SLHS diploma, granted to me in 1960, and the skills taught me there helped me greatly in the ensuing years as I earn a living in industry far from the Adirondacks.

Have they dropped spelling from the school curriculum, or does someone need to edit their spell check? I watch my hometown change from afar, and although I am not adverse to change, it seems that it should be made for good, not careless reasons.


Allen Williams

Franklin, Mass.

Please reconsider new spelling of Schroeter’s Field
There is no place like home.” How true that is. Never is that more evident than when changes occur.

My husband and I are both natives of Saranac Lake and Ray Brook, and although his business took us from there 20-plus years ago, it is our hometown and will always be. Saranac Lake always has held such wonderful memories. We both graduated high school there, and with progress comes change. We swallowed hard when our beloved Redskins became the Red Storm. We are saddened regarding the change of Schroeter’s Field to Schroeder’s Field. We wonder, why the change? Does no one remember Al and Helen Schroeter and their son George, who graduated high school when it was still at Petrova in 1962? Do they not remember Schroeter’s wonderful restaurant beside the field? Have they not spoken to anyone who had children play baseball there in the summer and slide on their sleds there in the winter? That was a tradition made possible by the Schroeter family. It may be just a name to some, but to us “oldies,” it is a treasured memory. Please reconsider your decision. Thank you.

Lucille Duprey

Houma, La.

Schroeter spelling is part of Saranac Lake’s heritage
In response to your article “Proposition III Artificial Turf,” I realize Saranac Lake is facing decisions on Wal-Mart, town revival, school repairs, higher taxes for the residents of this charming and quaint little Village that is “circled round by mighty mountains, breathed upon by healing balm, mirrored in the flowing rivers, blest by nature soothing calm,” and this brings me to the point: Helen and Al Schroeter and their son George were part of the Saranac Lake Community for many years. The Schroeter’s Field was named for them because some old timers believed they were worthy of this honor.

Your article apparently misspelled SchroeTer as SchroeDer’s Field. It is a small thing, but important to those who remember the Schroeter’s as part of this special community. Perhaps if you check with the Town Historian you will find the answer that led to the naming of Schroeter’s Field.

Many of the former residents, old-timers now, have kept Saranac Lake in our hearts, even though we moved away years ago. The history of the village is important in our memories. We would hope that the new arrivals would love this special spot on earth enough to preserve the history as they move forward, and that the name Schroeter is not lost to Schroeder.

Anne Stene



Thanks for remembering
When someone asks for my last name, I say Schroeter, like the guy in “Peanuts,” except with a “t.” Spelling it out does not help very much, because invariably most receipts, correspondence, bills, etc. are addressed with the familiar “d.”

It is with profound astonishment after reading your letters to the editor that so many Saranac Lakers remembered the correct spelling. I would like to sincerely thank Lucille Duprey, William Huggins, Jim McClay, John Pedroni, Anne Stene and Allen Williams for remembering the correct spelling of Schroeter’s field.

The field was a wonderful part of my youth. It served for countless summer pickup baseball games, carnivals (yes, carnivals — the lighted ferris wheel was visible from my bedroom window) and, if my memory serves me correctly, a rodeo or two. As far as baseball was concerned, I always wanted to be chosen for Billy Huggins’ team — he hit dingers all the time.

For me, the spelling of Schroeter is not that important. What is important is that the letter writers had fond remembrances of my parents and the Saranac Lake community. Again, thank you all for bringing back some wonderful memories.

George Schroeter



Wal-Mart and Schroeter's Field
There was a sad little letter in the Thursday edition of the ADE which can be viewed here, at least for the next 14 days.

What does Schroeter's Field have to do with Wal-Mart? Nothing actually, unless you are a conspiracy theorist. There have been several letters in the ADE, in the last few days, from out of town 'native Saranac Lakers' concerning the spelling of Schroders (Schroeter's) Field. These letters are the result of a 'news update' at the popular Saranac Lake memories website Bunksplace.

This letter is an example of an attack on the civil rights of "non-native Saranac Lakers" (NNSLers). NNSLers include ANYONE who was 1)not born in Saranac Lake General Hospital and 2) did not graduate from The Saranac Lake High School. The nice thing about this definition is that if you were born in SLGH (damn, who changed the name to AMC?) and did graduate from SLHS (damn, it's not in Petrova anymore), you will keep all the "rights" of a Native Saranac Laker (NSLer) forever. You can be living in Vermontville, NY or Luanda, Angola and you still have a full voice in what happens in SL. A "NNSLer" is an alien. It doesn't matter if you've lived here for 50 yrs. Keep your opinions to yourselves and you will be tolerated and allowed to live in OUR (NSLers)TOWN. If you express an opinion WE (NSLers)don't like, please just leave the area. Go back from whence you came. Don't make us form a Minuteman group (a group by the way that is responsible for the formation of some bigoted, racist groups.)

NNSLer's are everything that is wrong with SL. They are responsible for all change, even the spelling of Schoeter's Field. Now you NNSLers want to have an opinion about Wal-Mart! What's next ----------??????

Sometimes you can be ashamed to be a NSLer.

PS Wal-Mart CEO Lee Scott, Edelman CEO Richard Edelman and you PR/Direct Marketing guys in Rochester.....we don't mean you. You are honorary NSLer's.

# posted by Adirondack Wal-Mart @ Friday, May 26, 2006 0 comments

The majority of Saranac Lake residents want the sandpit rezoned commercial so Walmart can come in.What is so hard to understand about that.The board is to do the bidding of the people who pay them not outsiders from Keene and keene valley or anywhere else.It's a no brainer do what the towns people told you to do or resign or wait to be kicked out of office for lying to the people you begged for their vote in there kitchens and living rooms even calling one of the men you promised that you'd get Walmart in here to make sure he got to the poll on time.You truly fit the description of a politician!



The evidence is in, and it seems by all accounts that the letter writers were right. Phil “Bunk” Griffin, Webmaster of, was right. Everyone who remembered the Schroeter family and their restaurant — and remembered how they spelled their last name — was right. Most notably, George Schroeter is right.

Schroeter’s Field it is. The erroneous “Schroeder’s” era is over.

We and the Saranac Lake Central School District were wrong. We certainly didn’t mean to be wrong. Fact is, we’ve been spelling it with a “D” for a long time now. We don’t know when or how this error first appeared in print. It predates Lou Reuter’s 11-plus years as an Enterprise sports writer, and neither current SLCS Athletic Director Chuck Bell nor previous AD Mark Gilligan could remember when or how the change came about — and they go back a long time with Saranac Lake sports. Heck, we found an Enterprise from June 20, 1975 with this short blurb: “Larry Doyle Baseball will be played tonight at Petrova Field and not at Schroeder’s as previously stated.”

We never heard a complaint about it until last month, in response to our news coverage of a school ballot proposition to lay artificial turf on this Ampersand Avenue field.

Nevertheless, it’s clear that Schroeter’s Field should be spelled with a “T.” The Schroeter family owned the property and had a restaurant there, old advertisements and news articles are very clear on the “T,” and, to put the matter to rest once and for all, George Schroeter has been in touch with us to clarify the proper spelling of his name. He should know.

It’s the SLCS District’s field, and although school officials could technically spell it however the heck they wanted to, they have no reason to insist on a misspelling. Bell told us Monday that he’s fine with changing the spelling back to Schroeter’s Field, and we’re happy to follow that lead in our future pages.

On a lighter note, all this could change if the artificial turf advocates finally get their way; maybe they can rename it the Storm Dome — an offhand tribute to the geodesic dome house that replaced Schroeter’s Restaurant beside the field.

In the meantime, however, let it henceforth be known as Schroeter’s.

If you think that the couch-potato psycho thriller, "American Idol", has created a mass of emotionally charged fanatics just mention Wal-Mart to anyone in Saranac Lake and you had better wear a helmet just in case your views differ from those around you. We do need a general merchandise store badly but it would be nice if the Saranac Lake citizens and politicians could also channel the same degree of effort into attracting a first class hotel or convention center to Saranac Lake. With only one hotel left standing, plus a few small motels, visitors during the summer months and busy holidays have two options when there are no vacancies; go to Lake Placid or pitch a tent at Fish Creek. There is no sense in the Chamber of Commerce advertising the beauty of Saranac Lake's mountains and lakes to tourists and potential conventioneers if there is no place locally for them to stay.

Most travellers these days look for amenities such as excellent dining, indoor pool, saunas and, of course, wi-fi. Personally, Fish Creek meets the requirements of my lifestyle just fine (except maybe for the lack of wi-fi) but if we want to make tourism a viable industry in Saranac Lake we have to meet the needs of the more sophisticated traveller. A large first class hotel would benefit local shops, create jobs and also relieve local taxes. Saranac Lake was once a very popular tourist destination and can be once again with a little effort. Does anyone out there own a hotel chain by any chance?