Helen Need 2017 Schroon Lake Citizen of the Year

Hige congrats to Helen!

From Tammy Whitty-Brown:

The Schroon Lake Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors is pleased to announce that they have chosen Ms. Helen Need of Schroon Lake, NY as the Citizen of the Year for 2017.

Helen was born in Cohoes, N.Y. in 1941. She grew up there, attending school and graduating from Cohoes High School. After high school she married and had four children Gloria, Robert, Chad, and Wendy. As she raised her family, she worked for over 25 years as a home health-aid throughout the Capital Region, caring for those in need.

In 1970, Helen’s partner Joe Moryl purchased a piece of property on Hoffman, where they would spend their summers in Schroon Lake. In 2002, they decide to make Schroon Lake their permanent home, purchasing the Timberwolf Pub. The Timberwolf, located on Main Street has a long history of being a gathering place for locals and visitors; during its earlier years it was known as Gilhooleys, The Tavern, and Blaisdells.

Over the last fifteen years, Helen has made a huge impact on many individuals and families throughout the communities of Schroon Lake and North Hudson. The list of “acts of kindness” that she has performed is very long.

First and foremost, as many of our local residents have struggled with serious life threatening illnesses, Helen has repeatedly stepped up and donated her time and the food needed for numerous spaghetti dinner fundraisers to raise much needed funds for those critically ill. Her generosity for those in medical crisis does not end with fundraisers. Helen can often be found driving the ill or elderly to their doctor’s appointments (free of charge), even driving as far as Albany if needed. Often if a family is in need of a special medical item; such as a commode or a hospital tray, Helen has gone out of her way to locate said item and deliver it to their home, asking for nothing in exchange. At times, Helen has even taken on the care of an ill or elderly person, inviting them to live in one of her apartments above the pub so she can care for them herself.

In addition to opening her doors for fundraisers, Helen and the Timberwolf staff offer a community meal every Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years and Easter. Helen has an open door policy during these holidays, and anyone that is alone is welcome to join Helen and her family for dinner at no cost. Not only does she give refuge to local folks during these holidays, but she welcomes strangers who are passing through our town. In one nomination, it was noted that one Thanksgiving, a couple passing through Schroon Lake headed to Montreal with their two young boys stopped for a bite to eat. Helen graciously invited the family to enjoy the holiday buffet. After eating a full meal, the couple asked how much they owed, and Helen told them there was “no charge” and wished them a Happy Thanksgiving. The couple was brought to tears, and thanked her and a witness over heard them saying how nice the people in Schroon Lake are.

Helen’s love for the holidays doesn’t end with feeding folks, she goes out of her way to decorate the Timberwolf for each and every holiday event, making the Town feel a bit more special for those that pass by her Pub on Main St. But it doesn’t end there, over the years Helen has donated hundreds of coloring books, crayons and candy canes to Santa for him to hand out to the local community children at the Schroon Lake “Old Tyme Christmas Celebration” in December. And this year, in partnership with Rowe’s Adirondack Cabins and Mountainside Bible Chapel, she helped host the 1st Annual Easter Egg Hunt in the Schroon Lake Town Park. Helen provided colored eggs, candy and she offered a Pancake Breakfast with the Easter Bunny at the Timberwolf, an event that drew record number of children and happy smiles.

The basement at the Timberwolf has affectionately been named the “Wally World Bargain Basement”. Like most women, Helen loves to shop. It was reported by one of her nominators, that if Helen sees items on sale, she will buy several of each, even if she has no current need for them. One time a gentleman stopped in the Pub to warm up and stated he was low on fuel oil and had to keep the temperature down at his house till he could get a fuel delivery. Helen, without hesitation, slipped away from the bar, and headed down to the basement, returning a few short minutes later with a brand new space heater for him to use. He told her he would return it as soon as possible and she told him not to worry about it.

Helen’s name exemplifies who she is; she is a woman that helps those in “NEED”. There are many stories of her kindness, her contribution to the community, and we hope that our local community will now honor the woman that has helped so many folks over the last 15 years.

The Chamber will host a dinner to honor Helen Need as Citizen of the Year for 2017 at 6:00 PM on Thursday, June 22, 2017. The event will take place at Word of Life Inn in Schroon Lake. Come and hear the stories from the recipients and families of those that Helen has helped. Tickets to the dinner are available for $25 per person. For details, please contact the Schroon Lake Area Chamber of Commerce at (518) 532-7675 or email director@schroonlakechamber.org