Here's a look at the Empire State, one region, city, and town at a time. Be sure to visit our Regions page for more local hubbub!
There was no better way to head into the frigid temperatures of February than in a cozy state of mind. It’s all too easy (albeit understandable) to spend this final winter month in hibernation, but this year our team boldly made a couple of chilly laps around the State to see what what’s worth venturing outside for. Why miss the opportunity only because it’s cold
FEB 28, 2014 | BY: SOPHIE HAYS
Alpacas are the indie heartthrobs of the ungulate family.
Quirky, long-legged, exotic and prized for their luxurious, colorful coats, alpacas are cherished as unique beauties and beloved as much for their whimsical appearance — straight out of the imagination of Dr. Seuss — as they are for their relative obscurity.
However, alpacas may be gearing up for a commercial breakthrough. Steve McCarthy, who runs the 48-acre Spruce Ridge alpaca farm in Old Chatham with his partner, Jeff Lick, noted
FEB 26, 2014 | BY: KATHLEEN WILLCOX
You might think the warmer months are the best time to plan a weekend getaway to the Finger Lakes, but I say “Not true!” If you want to get a taste of life in a small town surrounded by breathtaking scenery, then the tiny village of Trumansburg should top your list of places to explore in 2014.
If you’re adventurous enough to brave the cold and discover the real character of an area, then hop in your car and head toward Cayuga Lake. When I discovered Trumansburg as a college student in the
FEB 25, 2014 | BY: SUE HENNINGER
Long gone are the days when Borscht Belt comedians filled the dining halls and casinos of the Catskill region's grand resorts. The area that once served as the stomping grounds of Milton Berle may no longer be a mecca for thousands of Jewish families from New York City, but that doesn't mean it has lost its appeal. Across the region, from Woodstock to Roxbury, hotels and guest houses are popping up with a wide array of styles and conveniences to choose from. Whether you are seeking a luxury spa package,
FEB 19, 2014 | BY: MEMOREE JOELLE
Around the corner from the mammoth Barclays Center is a quiet row of smaller, pastel-colored tiny shops that epitomize the emergent small business culture of Brooklyn. One of those bright facades belongs to Nunu Chocolates, a family-owned chocolate store with global reach and otherworldly flavor. The passion-driven company began with a shared idea and devotion to chemistry — both in and out of the kitchen — by husband and wife team Andy Laird and Justine Pringle.
FEB 18, 2014 | BY: SOPHIE HAYS
There are plenty of reasons NOT to like New York (taxes, for example), and yet, improbably, it remains oh-so-lovable. Maybe all New Yorkers are masochists, but we're in it for the long haul. In honor of Valentine's Day, and the State we love, the NYSOM Girls share the instant (or instants) we knew we were head-over-heels in love with New York.
Share the moment YOU knew you loved New York in the comments below!
Christine, Co-Founder and COO:
"I first visited New York City when I was 11 years
FEB 14, 2014 | BY: CHRISTINE MURPHY
Caitlin Wicker moved to Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn just three years ago with her fiancé, their cat, Alice, and her own stuffed animal from childhood — a racoon hand puppet creatively dubbed “Raccoonie.” Ms. Wicker’s story as a maker began in her senior year at the University of Minnesota (she hails from the Twin Cities), in search for a gift to replace her sister’s beloved stuffed rabbit, Pinksey; “Pinksey just got old — she still exists but she’s not in full form.” So Ms. Wicker
FEB 12, 2014 | BY: SOPHIE HAYS
Vacations shouldn’t have to require hideous waits, grim-faced attendants and abysmal cuisine before you get to the good stuff. Score the treat you travel for without the hassle. In the Hudson Valley, there are dozens of freelance chefs offering creative lessons in a full range of cuisines, plus the vaunted Culinary Institute of America, just waiting to whisk you away to a different world.
Check out our favorite Hudson Valley cooking escapes, for advanced gourmands and the clueless alike.
FEB 10, 2014 | BY: KATHLEEN WILLCOX
A trip to a skating rink is like a return to your childhood.
Every Monday evening for 13 consecutive years, my friends and I ventured to Central Park’s Wollman Rink (now Trump Rink) to watch the sun fall behind Columbus Circle and the Plaza Hotel lights start to glow at dusk. Central Park South was always snow-trodden. There was calm behind the rink’s soundtrack; it seemed like such a rare thing in this great, loud city.
Just this past weekend I revisited Trump for a skate. The rink seems smaller
FEB 07, 2014 | BY: SOPHIE HAYS
As we board Uncle Sam’s ferry, a girl in a wool cap and a collar turned up against the rain tells us the proper way to affix our life jackets. “Don’t worry though,” she says, “this ship isn’t going to sink so enjoy your trip.” And we do. After making our way up to the bow to take pictures, a couple and their son take rapid fire panoramic shots of the vessels cruising by. Our little boat rocks back and forth in the wake of a gigantic black liner that has passed.
It’s unclear which
FEB 06, 2014 | BY: ETHAN SHANTIE