Albany History Race Wins Award

Albany History Race Wins Award

June 11, 2015 | Local History

Way to go team APL! We were honored to receive the 2014 Upper Hudson Library System Adult Program of the Year Award for the “Albany History Race” program at a ceremony on June 10.

“Albany History Race” was a one-day team competition involving quick visits to many historic buildings and sites in the city of Albany that took place last November. The goal of the program was to introduce people to the library’s local history collection in a fun and social way, by joining a scavenger hunt with the popular television show “The Amazing Race.”

“Local History Librarian Jim Davies combined an old-fashioned scavenger hunt with intriguing pieces of history into an entertaining and immersive program for adults,” said our executive director, Scott Jarzombek.

“The ‘Albany History Race’ not only led participants to many noteworthy sites around Albany, but it also utilized dozens of historic photographs, maps, and books from the library’s collection. The very modern addition of live event coverage on the library’s social media platforms, provided by eLibrarian Deanna DiCarlo, brought the program into the hands of those watching from the sidelines,” Jarzombek said.

The program was recognized for strengthening APL’s reputation as a curator of local history, forging relationships with local businesses, delighting passionate history buffs, and engaging library followers.

During the race, teams used mission clues, based on items from the library’s collection, to identify and drive to 12 spots around Albany. The teams documented their visits to the clue locations with digital photos. The top three teams received bragging rights and prizes. Armchair racers followed the teams’ progress via the library’s Twitter and Instagram feeds.

The second annual “Albany History Race” is set for Saturday, Sept. 26, and will feature a dozen new historic locations. For more information, please email

Team registration will begin Sept. 1 through our events calendar or by visiting  


Stephanie Simon

Stephanie Simon is manager of APL's Communication and Creative Services Department, which provides content and information for the library's website, social media, publications, videos, podcasts, and other outlets. Stephanie also manages APL's public relations and marketing efforts.