Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Favorite thing: Each year, nearly 100,000 people visit the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, in the Johnson Center for Birds and Biodiversity, located in beautiful Sapsucker Woods Sanctuary, Ithaca, New York.
More than four miles of trails wind through a variety of habitats used by birds and other wildlife.
Fondest memory: Walking outside on the trails.
- Hiking and Walking
- Road Trip
Hollywood of the East
Favorite thing: Between 1912 and 1920, several movie companies moved to Ithaca to take advantage of the surrounding area that .is surrounded by numerous cliffs, waterfalls, and gorges. "Cliff-hanger" serials were the main type of movies produced and some are still shown by local stations. Many famous names (Irene Castle, Pearl White) and well-known films of the early part of the 20th century were actually made in Ithaca, as well as the Little Rascals and some Keystone Kops films.
Fondest memory: In 1912, Theodore and Leopold Wharton came to Ithaca, New York to film a Cornell University football game. Impressed by the scenery and location of the Finger Lakes, the Whartons turned Ithaca into their own "Hollywood of the East," opening a movie studio at Renwick Park on Cayuga Lake. Other movie companies produced films in Ithaca, but none matched the success of the Wharton Brothers. In the years that followed, the Whartons produced sixty-six films, including numerous one- and two-reelers, comedies, dramas, serials, feature films, documentaries, and advertising shorts. Their most memorable series was the "Exploits of Elaine" and their most controversial film was the wartime serial "Patria."
Favorite thing: This is the most amazing local activist thing I've seen in a long time. About 8 years ago, a group of people started a program called "Ithaca Hours" - it's a way to help the local economy. One Ithaca Hour is worth $10. The idea is that everyone's time is worth the same amount. It's kind of like a formal barter system - they publish a newsletter every month that lists all the people involved in Ithaca Hours and what services they offer - which could be dentistry, any kind of lessons (music, language, dancing, whatever), dog walking, knitting, gardening, babysitting, lawn mowing, tutoring -- you name it, it's probably offered. You can either barter services, or you can purchase the services with Ithaca Hours. Just as impressive is that many stores now accept Ithaca Hours as payment (sometimes they'll accept 100% of the total in Ithaca hours, sometimes they put a cap on it). There are several stores on the Commons that accept them (Autumn Leaves and Ten Thousand Villages I know for sure accept them), as well as other places like the local Organic Coop takes them.
You get 2-4 hours free for registering your services in the newsletter. You can also buy Ithaca Hours.
Post Offices and buying stamps
Favorite thing: Not a favorite thing -- but buying stamps doesn't fit under any other VT category, so here it is:
You can find Post Offices in the following locations:
1) Downtown Ithaca, 607-266-0570, 213 N Tioga St, Ithaca, NY 14851
2) Ithaca College/Phillps Hall, 607-274-3367, 953 Danby Rd, Ithaca, NY 14850
3) Ithaca Main Office, 607-266-0570, 757 Warren Rd, Ithaca, NY 14850
4) Cornell University Postmarket, 607-255-3070, G22 Kennedy Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853 [Approx]
5) Lansing Branch, 607-533-8698, 1939 E Shore Dr Ste 2, Lansing, NY 14882
You can buy stamps in the following places:
1) Ahold Financial Services, 607-256-9672, 409 College Ave, Ithica, NY 14850
2) Penn Traffic, 607-277-0711, 212 Hancock St, Ithaca, NY 14850
3) Cvs, 607-273-3282, 625 W Clinton St, Ithaca, NY 14850
4) Wegmans, 607-277-5800, 500 S Meadow St, Ithaca, NY 14850
Ithaca College Campus
Favorite thing: It's certainly not as widespread or majestic as the Cornell Campus, but there are some lovely, quiet spaces. There are also some interesting (?) things to see. This sculpture has the typical legend that it will roll down the hill the first time a virgin graduates. It's been proven untrue, however.
Fondest memory: The view from the top of the lecture hall is lovely. Sunsets and sunrises look wonderful from up here...and even though a lot of the empty spaces have disappeared, the chapel area and upper areas still have a sense of tranquility.
An educational tribute to Carl Sagan
Favorite thing: This planet walk begins in the middle of the commons. If you follow all the way through, you will have taken a quick trip through our solar system. Each piece represents our sun or the planets. It's very cool. I've never done the whole thing, but kids seem to really like it. The space between the markers and the relative size of the "planets" inside are all to scale.
- Arts and Culture
- Hiking and Walking
Ithaca College Campus
Favorite thing: The fountains are lit up at night and have a little dance they like to do. Also, standing by the fountains affords another wonderful view of the lake, downtown, and the Cornell campus. The fountains are directly in front of the theatre building. Fantastic shows have been presented here!
Fondest memory: Seniors used to jump into the fountains during senior week...do they still do that?
House Beautiful - One of Ithaca's Older Homes
Favorite thing: I can imagine that this house is subdivided into several apartments. One of them is rented by a middle-ages professor of Romance Languages, a woman who travels to Spain and Portugal every summer. Another unit is occupied by an older retired schoolteacher who moved here after his wife died of Breast Cancer. There's also a lesbian couple living in the house - one of the women is part-owner of a coffee shop in Collegetown, and the other is a graduate student in the English Department.
- Road Trip
Tour the Cornell Campus. ...
Favorite thing: Tour the Cornell Campus. Cornell - Ivy League, baby -is one of the most beautiful college campuses in the world. In almost every season (be sure to dress warmly in the winter!), Cornell pleases and delights all your senses! Stand atop Libe Slope and see majestic Cayuga Lake framed by the historic Baker Towers. Stop and smell the rare flowers at the world famous Plantations. Eat some excellent ice cream (egg nog is my favorite) at the Dairy Barn or sip some moccachino and chow on a California Bagel with dill cream cheese at College Town bagels (see a cool sample menu on this page). Check out brains, glow in the dark rocks, crazy underground libraries, the crazy undergrad students...
Fondest memory: I'd like to say my favorite memory was at the Royal Palm Tavern, but I don't remember too much about that! :) Seriously ... what I miss about Ithaca is the community. People are friendly in Ithaca, it has never lost it's small town appeal. Though a majority of the residents are transient, the spirit of Ithaca remain immovable.
Simply put - Ithaca really is...
Favorite thing: Simply put - Ithaca really is gorges. Visit these state parks: Buttermilk, Taughannock, Treman. Also, take a walk around the Cornell Plantations.
Fondest memory: Cornell has a beautiful campus, and the surrounding environment is a wonderful place. Below, Liz, Amy, Mel and Harley chill in front of Taughannock Falls - a must see.
Harvard, Yale, Princeton,...
Favorite thing: Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Penn, Columbia, Dartmouth, Brown and CORNELL represent the eight universities that comprise THE IVY-LEAGUE.
Fondest memory: The many hours spent in/around Willard Straight Hall..the student union is a massive building that has a great hall with heraldry worthy of Arthurian acclaim. Everybody wanders through here at least once a day. The view of Cayuga Lake from the rear terrace is awesome at sunset and the food in the IVY ROOM is affordable and very good!
Check out the Ithaca sunsets. ...
Favorite thing: Check out the Ithaca sunsets. This can be done from the aptly named Sunset Park in Cayuga Heights. If you are lucky you will know someone who lives down by the lake so you can witness one of these:
Fondest memory: As I returned here from California (many thought I was crazy) back to the snow and the seasons, I had some great memories that brought me back. I think I was hoping to generate some more ;)
Drive around Lake Cayuga and...
Favorite thing: Drive around Lake Cayuga and go on a wine tour. Upstate NY is one of the most beautiful places around and Ithaca NY is known for, among other things, the dramatic gorges and waterfalls that flow through the area.
Fondest memory: As a Cornell University Alumni, I have many fond memories of Ithaca, NY and my alma mater. Besides sunsets overlooking the lake from Sunset Park or walks in Buttermilk Falls, Traying down Libe slope in 10 feet of snow, studying hard and having fun stick out in my mind. If you are ever traveling through down I90 and want to explore, Ithaca NY is a gem tucked into the hillsides that you won't want to miss.
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