Fete De Danse 2006: Norte Maar asks the North Country, “Shall we dance?”

Norte Maar asks the North Country, “Shall we dance?”
By By Paula Routly
Seven Days, Aug 2, 2006 

Rouses Point has seen better days. Last fall the town’s number-one employer, Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, announced its impending departure; the drug company employs a tenth of Rouses Point’s 2350 residents and, until recently, ranked as the largest private employer in the North Country. In a recent New York Timesarticle the mayor described the potential impact of the job losses as “Rouses Point’s 9/11.”

Even at the peak of summer boating season, the place has a “bridge to nowhere” feel about it. About a half-dozen empty storefronts, including the downtown Save-A-Lot supermarket, mar the charming but dated business district that runs for several blocks along the west side of Lake Champlain. Yellow caution tape encircles a corner lot piled high with burned wood and rubble — the remains of the landmark Holland Hotel. Last weekend, a group of listless teens walked north past the abandoned stores, toward Canada.

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