Chronology

1850 - Tributary from White Lake to Limestone Creek is dammed in Manlius to create pond

1865 - Snook family purchases land in Manlius including pond

Late 19th century – Pond powers mill used to make gypsum into plaster; then converted to a cider mill

1916 – Snook family opens pond to the public for swimming at 5 cents a day per person

Early 20th century – Snook family harvests ice from pond in winter months to sell to farmers – click here for original ad

1920′s – Snook’s public swimming hole fee raised to 10 cents

1949 – Snook family opens private club, with a $1 yearly membership fee, offering swimming, tennis courts, snack bar, and picnic area from May 24 to Labor Day, and ice skating in the winter – click here for picture

1949 - Snook’s Pond Club restaurant opens for business; later known as Idlewood, Highbridge 92, and Maxwell Silverman’s

1960′s and 1970′s - Sixteen homes are built on north and south banks of pond, along Wakefield Drive and Barberry Lane

1988 – Swim club continues to welcome new members, with annual rate of $175 per person or $400 per family

1990 - Agway Gardens store opens in former location of restaurant

September 3, 2001 – Snook family closes swim club after 85 years

Homeowners fronting the water continue using pond for recreational purposes, including swimming, fishing, and boating

June 4, 2007 – EcoLogic issues report on Possible Impacts of Dredging Snooks Pond, cautioning dredging should be conducted in “ecologically sensitive fashion” to “protect essential shallow areas”

August 2007 – Robert Congel purchases 21 acres encircling the eastern end of Snook’s Pond

November 2007 – Congel substantially drains the pond without notice to homeowners fronting the water – click here for pictures

April 2008 – Pond remains largely without water – click here for pictures

May 2008 – Pond remains largely without water – click here for pictures

Spring 2008 – Congel applies for federal, state, and town permits to replace the existing deteriorated dam with two new dams, to dredge the east end of pond, in anticipation of constructing a “green” technology home on the east bank and a silt control “restorer” across the water itself at the western end of his property.

Summer 2008 – Permits are issued and dam replacement, dredging, and all construction are expected to be completed by the end of year.  However, only the dredging is accomplished.

December 2008 – Pond remains largely without water – click here for pictures

August 2009 – Pond remains largely without water; invasive plant species take root near old shorelines and in exposed silt beds and proliferate – click here for picture

January 26, 2010 – DEC issues Modification to Dam Permit with conditions including a requirement that Congel “produce, in cooperation with adjacent land-owners, an Invasive Plant Control Plan by May 31, 2010.”

June 2010 – Congel fails to produce Invasive Plant Control Plan or consult with homeowners

September 20, 2010 – DEC advises in letter that it lacks authority to compel Congel to repair dam or restore water level to historically normal level and recommends contact with Congel to resolve issues

Congel continues to ignore communications from homeowners

January 18, 2011 – DEC grants Congel request for two year extension of dam permit to December 31, 2012

July 2011 – Pond remains largely without water; invasive plant species have substantially proliferated - click here for pictures

July 2011 – Congel begins construction of “green” home on east bank of pond

July 23, 2011 – Homeowners send grievance letter to Congel and others, outlining complaints

August 2011 – Pond water level remains below normal.  No work on dam repair.  Invasive plant species continue to proliferate. Homeowners voice complaints at Manlius Town Board meeting.

September 27, 2011 – Manlius Neighbors Complain About Developer Robert Congel’s Management of Snook’s Pond article appears in Syracuse Post Standard

September 30, 2011 - Spectra Environmental Group proposes completely inadequate Invasive Plant Control Plan

December 2, 2011 – Neighbors commission independent analysis by Barton & Loguidice which finds the Spectra Plan “flawed and insufficient” and recommends steps to restore the pond to its condition prior to draining.

January 3, 2012Homeowners ask DEC to require specific modifications in Invasive Plant Control Plan before granting approval. Neither DEC nor Congel respond.

April 28, 2012Homeowners again ask DEC to intervene.

April 30, 2012 - Pond drained without adequate notice to homeowners, and work finally begins on repair of original dam.

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