David Dekok - Death in Ithaca- Typhoid ravaged small town in 1903, to calendar
In 1903, Ithaca, NY, was hit by one of the last and worst typhoid epidemics in American history. Eighty-two people died, including 28 Cornell University students before the plague was brought under control by sanitary engineer George Soper, who a few years later would track down Typhoid Mary. The epidemic was caused by the greed and stupidity of a business owner who took over the local water company with critical financing Cornell University arranged by his friends on the board. Author and journalist David DeKok will tell a story that will leave you angry about the foolish decisions that left people dead or deeply in debt from medical bills, but also inspired by a community rallying to defeat an external menace that was killing men, women and children of all ages and social classes.
David DeKok writes non-fiction books about small towns in crisis. He has also written books about the Centralia mine fire and the murder of a girl from his hometown in the library of Penn State University in 1969. He is a graduate of Hope College in Holland, Michigan, and lives with his wife and daughters by the Susquehanna River in Harrisburg, PA. He is also a reporter for Reuters.
Have you ever wanted to climb Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world? Or at least get to its bottom, the Everest Base Camp, over 10,000 feet below its 29,035 foot summit.
Ted Vaill made the trek to Everest Base Camp, a 100-mile roundtrip journey over 23 days, with over 40,000 feet in elevation gain and descent. He also climbed 18,000-foot Gokyo Ri, traversed the dangerous Cho La Pass, and reached Everest Base Camp, which was wiped out in an avalanche. Ted also ventured onto the notorious Kumba Glacier Icefall, which killed 17 Sherpas two years ago when it collapsed.
The Everest Base Camp Trek is certainly a challenge, many days of walking, high altitudes, rocky tracks and some pretty steep inclines, but what an achievement to say that you reached the base camp of the highest mountain in the world, especially as the Everest Base Camp is actually higher than a lot of the peaks of other mountains!
While many people choose Everest Base Camp as their trekking destination in the Himalayas, Gokyo Ri is a true gem and a favorite amongst many trekkers and climbers. And while both Everest Base Camp and Gokyo Ri are about the same height (around 18,000 ft), Gokyo Ri offers the much greater view. Once there you stand atop a giant glacier, surrounded by dozens of the tallest mountains on earth, including Cho Oyu, Lhotse, Makalu and legendary Mt. Everest (all four are above 8,200 meters / 26,000 ft).
The Khumbu icefall is a passage of constantly-falling ice from the head of the Khumbu glacier, at the point where the ice begins to melt. It is found at around 5,486 metres (17,999ft) above sea level on the Nepalese side of Mount Everest, not far from base camp. It has been labelled the most dangerous part of the trip up the South Col route to the summit of the mountain.
Teddy Roosevelt said "It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out where the strong man stumbled or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred with sweat and blood. At best, he knows the triumph of high achievement; for if he fails at least he failed while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat."
Ted has made a film of his trek to Everest, and attendees will see his journey as it unfolded, with Ted sharing his own extemporaneous comments, and those of his companions.
Adventurers Club member Alan Feldstein travels to Africa at least once or twice a year to visit different parts of the vast continent of Africa and to explore looking for new opportunities.
Last year on a several different trips he explored the countries of Malawi, Zambia and Botswana as well as the amazing city of Cape Town Africa. Tonight, Alan will share his passion for Africa and report on his exploration of these countries including his re-tracing some of the routes undertaking by Dr. Livingstone. He will also discuss some of the differences of each of these countries, their histories, and environmental initiatives. He will also share some lesser known facts that many people who go over as tourists are not made aware of. In addition, he will share some amazing photos from his journeys.
Malawi, a landlocked country in southeastern Africa, is defined by its topography of highlands split by the Great Rift Valley and enormous Lake Malawi. The lake’s southern end falls within Lake Malawi National Park – sheltering diverse wildlife from colorful fish to baboons – and its clear waters are popular for diving and boating. Peninsular Cape Maclear is known for its beach resorts.
Zambia, in southern Africa, is also a landlocked country of rugged terrain and diverse wildlife, with many parks and safari areas. On its border with Zimbabwe is famed Victoria Falls – indigenously called Mosi-oa-Tunya, or "Smoke That Thunders” – plunging a misty 108m into narrow Batoka Gorge. Spanning the Zambezi River just below the falls is Victoria Falls Bridge, a spectacular viewpoint.
Botswana, a landlocked country also in Southern Africa, has a landscape defined by the Kalahari Desert and the Okavango Delta, which becomes a lush animal habitat during the seasonal floods. The massive Central Kalahari Game Reserve, with its fossilized river valleys and undulating grasslands, is home to numerous animals including giraffes, cheetahs, hyenas and wild dogs.
Cape Town is a port city on South Africa’s southwest coast, on a peninsula beneath the imposing Table Mountain. Slowly rotating cable cars climb to the mountain’s flat top, from which there are sweeping views of the city, the busy harbor and boats heading for Robben Island, the notorious prison that once held Nelson Mandela, which is now a living museum.