Tupper Lake People filed into a conference room at the Wild Center in Tupper Lake as members of the Adirondack Park Agency Board started to cast their votes Jan. 20.
After the silence following a no vote by Richard Booth on the Adirondack Club and Resort permit, there was a slight cheer when Judy Drabicki voted in favor of the project, representing the DEC.
The cheers grew louder with each vote in the affirmative, until a loud cheer welcomed the vote of State Department representative Dede Scozzafava, giving the ACR permit the six votes needed for passage.
"I am very pleased," Sam Churco, who watched the morning APA meeting at the Wild Center, said. "I know these woods and I still lease at the Sugarloaf Hunting Club. I think that this project will be so much less of an environmental impact because these owners are going to be planting trees and not cutting them down or driving skidders all around."
Anne Hoag of Cabin Fever and Co. Floral and Gifts said that the decision was a welcome one for her business.
"I started this business eight years ago with the hopes that this was going to happen along with the Wild Center project," Hoag said. "Just when I felt like I was going to have to make some decisions about the future, this came down and I feel that I can now stay here."
Jean Donah, who lives near the Big Tupper Ski Area and site of the proposed resort said that, as a skier, she was pleased.
"I am happy for the decision," Donah said. "I hope that it is a good thing. I am a skier, so go Big Tupper."
Hoag said that the decision by the APA board brought optimism to the community.
"This brings more opportunities, and I am excited to see where it is going to go," she said.
"This was a learning experience for everyone," Churco said. "In brief, I learned a lot of stuff about this process. I applaud the investors for hanging on with this as long as they did."
As for his future hunting plans...
"I lose my hunting camp, but I can go hunting someplace else."