What's new in Ontario County

Friday, December 4, 2015 2:06 PM by Karen Miltner

Time to fly. 

The excitement never sleeps at Bristol Mountain Aerial Adventures, which recently opened its Zipline Canopy Tour (pictured below) near Canandaigua. The experience features seven ziplines measuring more than 5,000 feet, four bridges, two hikes, two off-road rides and a final “leap of faith.” 

The three-hour tour is led by two guides and is limited to 12 participants. Experience the Bristol Hills in ways you could never imagine, even in winter. For information, click here or to make a reservation, call (585) 374-1180. Tours are offered by appointment by Saturday and Sunday starting at 10 a.m.

Who is bringing the dessert for Thanksgiving?

Tuesday, November 24, 2015 10:39 AM by Valerie Knoblauch

With Thanksgiving upon us, I’ve heard a lot of discussion lately about desserts for the infamous holiday dinner. Certainly, this is one of the key components of our American traditions for this holiday. Jake, our newest team member, is fresh out of college and going home for his first Thanksgiving as a working professional in the real world. He wanted to contribute to the dinner and got a great suggestion from Karen, our second to the newest team member (and a former food writer and in-house culinary expert), that he should consider taking a grape pie. I heartily endorsed that suggestion. 

I realize I may get some flak for writing about Christmas before Thanksgiving (my mother, for example, would be appalled). But, at least to me, the spirit of the holiday season definitely starts to build up even before Turkey Day. Many towns have holiday lights in the park, or lights on homes, but in Canandaigua we have trees in houses.

There’s a Phelps County in both Missouri and Nebraska and a town named Phelps in Kentucky and Wisconsin. There is even a Lake Phelps somewhere, according to Wikipedia. 

But this week, I spent the “best” time in Phelps, New York, at a Business After Hours event sponsored by the Phelps Chamber of Commerce.

The Finger Lakes Visitors Connection team decided to take advantage of this event and mingle in a couple of different places in town. First stop, the Water Side Wine Bar. I wish I had a photo to show here, but it was dark when we arrived. Still, we looked out through the picture window directly down to the awesome Flint Creek waterfall.

Everyone in the Finger Lakes region who has an interest in Native American history and culture has been eagerly waiting for the opening of the Seneca Art & Culture Center at Ganondagan State Historic Site.

The 17,300-square-foot interpretive center brings together 2,000 years of Seneca and Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) contributions to art, culture and society. The man who had the vision for all of this, site manager Peter Jemison (pictured below), spent the past 20 years working tirelessly to make this dream a reality.

Waking up to history where the dead sleep

Friday, October 16, 2015 12:47 PM by Jake Banas

“A flower she sleepeth, but is not dead.”

– Headstone of Frankie Tubbs, circa 1850, Baker Cemetery, Richmond, Ontario County, New York. 

Places of historical significance, happy or sad, often have a certain feeling or energy to them that keeps people returning time and time again. The same is often true of places that bear some emotional significance. These places can become locations of peace, of centering, of focus; in particular, right around this time of year the appeal of one such type of location grows strong…

Autumn is my favorite time of year, even though I know it means that I will have to say goodbye (at least for a while) to some of those blissful things leading up to it: fresh vine-grown tomatoes from the garden; bike rides on country roads wearing just a T-shirt and shorts; shaded walks in the woods; breakfast, lunch and dinner on the patio; going to sleep and waking up with the windows open.

The Naples Grape Festival, held the last week of September since 1961, celebrates the area’s grape harvest, as well as local business owners, artists, farmers, musicians... I could go on.  For me, it also means celebrating the close of summer, and welcoming the start of fall. Knowing that some of you may have missed the festival this year or in past years due to other obligations – work, school, travel, Sunday football – let’s take a trip down festival memory lane and look through some of my favorite Instagram photos from the last few years of the Naples Grape Festival.

A Pennsylvania traveler called the office yesterday, pining for the delicious cabbage and cauliflower purchased here years ago when visiting the Finger Lakes. The caller is returning to our area next week and wanted to know where more cabbage and cauliflower could be purchased.