Archive for February, 2012

Abraham Lincoln Park — Hidden Gem on Irondequoit Bay

A “diamond in the rough” might be used to describe our 16th president, as well as this lovely gem of a park along the bay. Not only are the trails fun to hike, the views they provide are wonderful and the stream bed I explored was full of colorful gems.

Continue Reading February 25, 2012 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

Honeoye Falls Brewery Pub and Grill: Brew and a View

Finger Lakes Summer

The best view of the falls is from the patio of the pub

Honeoye Falls describes itself as “a friendly little village situated on the upper falls of Honeoye Creek approximately fifteen miles southeast of Rochester, New York.” The village has been a productive center of commerce since the late 1700’s, when mills and factories began to pop up along the upper and lower  falls. It changed names many time before becoming known as Honeoye Falls in the mid-1800s.

Located right in the four corners of town is the Honeoye Falls Brewery Pub & Grill, which  has been a tavern/pub, & or a restaurant for over 70 years, while the building itself has housed everything from a millinery, shoemaker, & a bakery, over the previous 70+ years.

Finger Lakes Summer

Located on the four corners of downtown Honeoye Falls

The Brewery Pub and Grill offers the only view of scenic Honeoye Falls while you enjoy casual dining. You can it outdoors on the deck during the warm months, or enjoy the ambiance of a fireside meal in the enclosed gazebo complete with a fireplace.

Finger Lakes Summer

13 Lucky Drafts made Syracuse Basketball lucky

We visited on a quiet wintry Saturday. I was interested in sampling the 13 Lucky Drafts:  a changing selection of microbrews from across the US, and a burger — for which they are well-known. It was a tough choice — should I try the Southern Tier Eurotrash Pliz or the 3 Heads Brewery Loopy. Better try them all.

Charlie ordered the “No Bun Mo Fun Burger” — 8 oz. Angus Beef atop a mound of French Fries with Chili, shredded Cheddar, scallion & sour cream. I ordered the Brew Burger which I believe was designed to maximize my beer quaffing experience.

Finger Lakes Summer

Lunch in the gazebo

After we enjoyed our lunch we stopped at the bar for another round while Syracuse University Basketball was on TV. The bartender knew everyone by their first name and the cast of regulars made us feel right at home. While at the bar we were also able to meet the chef, Kirk, who was an old friend of Charlie’s friend Ginger.

Finger Lakes Summer

Charlie's poet friend from Atlanta, Ginger Murchinson, recommended we say hello to her good friend Kirk

The Brewery Pub is located at 8 West Main Street in Honeoye Falls.

Monday 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Tue-Thur: Lunch 11:00 AM – 2:30 PM
Tue-Thur: Dinner 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Fri-Sat: 11:00 AM – 11:00 PM (Lunch Available Till 5:00)
Sunday Lunch: 12:00 PM – 5:00PM
Sunday Dinner: 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM

February 19, 2012 at 2:59 am Leave a comment

Cracker Box Palace — “we’ve been expecting you”

Finger Lakes Summer

Kids have an opportunity to get up close and meet farm animals

Many of you may know “Cracker Box Palace” as a song from a George Harrison album. “We welcome you to Cracker Box Palace, we’ve been expecting you..” That song  is a memory from my childhood. If you want to make some more great memories for your kids, bring them to the Finger Lakes version of Cracker Box Palace. It’s a perfect family destination with many kid-friendly activities throughout the year.

Cracker Box Palace is a not for profit, no-kill rescue and rehabilitation shelter for over 180 farm animals. Animals of every kind come to recover from illness, neglect or abuse. Once given necessary adjustment time and veterinary care, animals are available for adoption.

Finger Lakes Summer

View of the farm and a variety of very happy animals

In early 2011, Cracker Box Palace achieved ownership of  a beautiful piece of property — Alasa Farms. This farm was formerly a historic Shaker community in the early 1800’s. Some years later, it served as a migrant camp. Today it is home to horses, geese, ducks, chickens, rabbits, goats, sheep, several breeds of pigs, llamas and (see the video) donkeys.

The farm is funded totally through memberships, sponsorships, donations, and grants. If animals cannot be placed in suitable adoptive homes they will stay on the farm. They also offer a sponsorship program for people who love animals but do not have facilities to care for them. Cracker Box Palace also offers a variety of Youth Programs for scouts, special needs groups, and school community service projects.

The farm has apple orchards as well. The month-long, Apple Pic-n-Picnic starts around the 2nd week of September with U-Pick apples from dwarf trees. Alasa Farms also participates in the annual Apple Tasting Tour.

Finger LakesView of Alasa Farms in proximity to Sodus Bay

Alasa Farms is located just southwest of Sodus Bay. The property and surrounding land is very beautiful and contains many waterways that flow to the bay.  With the assistance of the Genesee Land Trust, Alasa Farms has ensured that their 627 acres of forests, wetlands, working crop lands and orchards, will remain open land. By spring of 2012 there will be trails through the woods and around the farm marked for horseback riding and hiking.

Finger Lakes Summer

There are several waterfalls on the property

Additionally, The Nature Conservancy has acquired another 500 +acres between the Farm and Sodus Bay, including 800’ of frontage on the bay. It will remain undisturbed and eventually be transferred to New York state for inclusion in a wildlife management area.

Finger Lakes Summer

Location of Cracker Box Palace/Alasa Farms

HOURS:  10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays
Contact us to inquire about tours, call 315.483.2493.

Cracker Box Palace on Facebook.

Location:  6450 Shaker Road, Alton, NY, 14413

February 10, 2012 at 11:30 pm Leave a comment

The George Eastman House — A Picture of Innovation

Finger lakes summer

The George Eastman House is located at 900 East Avenue

To learn about the roots of Rochester New York, you have to visit the George Eastman House. George Eastman is called the father of Rochester. Eastman, a lover of photography, did not invent it, but his inventions made it possible for every family to afford to take their own pictures for the first time.

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Front hall way, where thousands of guests were greeted during many parties

Eastman invented the Brownie Camera — pretty much a box — with a lens, with film inside, ready for instant use, with no special training, for only $1.00 — and that included printing the pictures! Once you took the pictures, you had to mail the entire camera back to get your pictures — and another roll of film inside your camera. This camera business became known  to the world as the Eastman Kodak Company.

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Care for an elephant on the wall of your conservatory?

The George Eastman Museum contains over 400,000 photographs, and 28,000 films.

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Even ash trays have become extinct

Just beyond the main entrance is the photography gallery, which hosts changing shows through out the year. You can enjoy classic films at the Dryden Theater, also part of the museum. There is also a café and gift shop between the gallery and the house.

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View of the mysterious third floor

The museum generously allows photography anywhere inside the house, and once the tour is over you can explore the second floor yourself. I strongly suggest arriving in time for a docent-led tour. I enjoyed the wonderful stories describing Mr Eastman’s constant innovation.

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View of the north side gardens

Eastman’s father died when he was very young. To make ends meet his mother operated a boarding house and taking in renters, which included, cooking for them and doing their laundry. As soon as he could, George quit school very young, and took a job to help out.

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Learning nook

His rough beginnings explain his lifelong commitment to supporting education, the arts and cultural improvement. These include contributions to The University of Rochester, Hillside Children’s Center, The Rochester Friendly Home, The Memorial Art gallery, Rochester Institute of Technology, the Red Cross, and Durand Eastman Park.

Eastman is credited with creating The Center for Governmental Research, The United Way, The Eastman School of Music, The Rochester Philharmonic, The Eastman (KODAK) Theater, Strong Hospital and the Eastman Dental School.

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Hat boxes from area retailers in an upstairs closet

There are many other universities and institutions outside of Rochester that he also supported. It is amazing that a man with so little education could contribute so generously to the education and improvement of life for so many others.

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Doesn't everyone need an elephant foot trash can?

George Eastman so loved music that he had a full pipe organ installed in his house, and a giant conservatory built to enjoy it in. Originally the room intended to contain the organ was not big enough, so Mr. Eastman had his mansion cut in half. The north (rear) section was moved 9 ft. 4 in. north — to make a bigger room. The house was moved with horizontal hydraulic jacks on railroad ties with special wheels and tracks.

Location : 900 East Avenue, Rochester, NY 14607

Hours : Tue, Wed, Fri, Sat : 10am – 5pm · Thu 10am – 8pm · Sun : 1pm – 5pm

Admission : Adults $12, Seniors (65+) $10, Students (with ID) $5, Children 12 and Under Free · Members Free

Contact : Telephone (585) 271-3361

February 4, 2012 at 6:33 am Leave a comment

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