Steuben County, New York
Corning - City of Glass
Clock tower in Gaffer District
Revitalized Gaffer District
Rockwell Museum of Western Art - The End of the Trail
Rockwell Museum of Western Art - features art from all eras
The Patterson Inn Museum
Corning Museum of Glass - Evening Dress with Shawl by Karen LaMont
Corning Museum of Glass - glass blowing demonstration
Corning Museum of Glass - making a flower
Hammondsport town square
Lime Berry shop
Dining at Village Tavern Restaurant & Inn with over 130 beers
Glenn H. Curtiss Museum
Curtiss was the "fastest man on earth"
The Black Sheep Inn - an octogon house
Chef Debbie at Black Sheep Inn
Octogon ceiling detail
Pleasant Valley Wine Company - on the National Historic Register
Bully Hill Winery
Hiking in Stony Brook State Park
Steuben County, nestled at the southern end of Keuka Lake, is full of trails – trails of all kinds. Imagine trails that feature hot glass, cool wines, and decadent chocolate. They are all waiting to be explored.
Corning is home to the world’s most comprehensive glass collection. Learn the story of glass making from ancient times to the present at the Corning Museum of Glass. The numerous exhibits trace the history of glass making around the world. The eclectic collection includes outstanding pieces such as one of the earliest known glass portraits. The Egyptian piece from circa 1450 BC is only two inches high and most likely the head of Amenhotep II, who ruled about 60 years before Tutankhamen. Contemporary works such as Karen LaMonte’s life size ethereal "Evening Dress with Shawl," which she describes as "…a window to the interior," is just one example of the modern glasswork on display. Family-friendly handheld audio guides offer insightful commentaries on more than 60 works of art. Visitors can watch a master glassmaker make a beautiful glass vase out of molten glass then head to the workshop to create their own personalized glass souvenir.
A free shuttle takes visitors to downtown Corning where the museum trail continues at the Rockwell Museum of Western Art. Not to be confused with Norman Rockwell, this museum has been declared "The best of the West in the East." Housed in the old City Hall, an architectural gem in its own right, with a buffalo sculpture breaking out of the upper floor, the museum is hard to miss. The collection, most of which was donated by local residents, Bob and Hertha Rockwell, includes works by the great nineteenth and early twentieth-century painters and sculptors, including Remington, Russell, Dallin, and Catlin. New acquisitions of recent works by Native Americans give a total perspective to the collection. The exhibits range from beautiful panoramic landscapes to Dallin’s sculpture, "Appeal to the Great Sprit;" to "NDN for Life," Quick-to-See Smith’s painting of a Native dress emblazoned with NDN. James Earles Fraser's provocative sculpture "The End of the Trail" featured in Legacy of the Vanishing Race Gallery is not the end of Steuben County’s museum trail.
Corning’s Benjamin Patterson Inn Museum captures a moment in time. At the turn of the 19th century travelers at the Patterson Inn could find themselves sleeping in a rope bed with someone they didn’t even know. Next to the Inn is the log cabin where the Mack family of five lived. Cooking, eating and sleeping took place in one small room. It gives new appreciation to today’s modern conveniences.
On July 4, just north of Corning in Hammondsport, the Glenn H. Curtiss Museum will celebrate the centennial of the first pre-announced flight in America of a heavier-than-air flying machine, the June Bug. The nearly one-mile flight brought fame to Curtiss and Hammondsport. His early work on seaplanes, plus his association with the U. S. Navy, earned for Curtiss the title of "Father of Naval Aviation." Curtiss first gained fame as "The Fastest Man on Earth" when, in 1907, he set the world motorcycle land speed record of 136.36 mph. While the main focus of the museum deals with aviation there are changing displays that include miniature dollhouses and local memorabilia.
Hammondsport is the starting point for the Keuka Lake Wine Trail. The Pleasant Valley Wine Company is the oldest winery in the Finger Lakes region. Established in 1860, the winery was the first U.S. bonded winery. The winery’s fascinating history includes its beginnings as a family business to its survival during Prohibition relying on sales for sacramental wines to corporate takeovers, and finally becoming a family business again. Eight of the winery’s stone buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places making it of architectural interest.
Wine lovers should raise their glass in thanks to Dr. Konstantin Frank who ignited the "Vinifera Revolution," a movement that changed the course of wine growing in the United States. He discovered that a little bug in the soil, not the climate, was the cause of the area’s poor grape yield, which he solved by grafting preferred vinifera onto local bug-resistance rootstock.
Just like each wine has a distinctive flavor so does each winery. Greyton H. Taylor, whose family had been growing grapes since 1878, started Bully Hill Winery in 1958. The winery’s museum complex houses the Cooper Shop with a video on barrel making, The New York State Wine Museum of Greyton H. Taylor, and the Walter S. Taylor Art Gallery. Raise your wine IQ at Keuka Lake Vineyards, a small estate winery that produces world class wines and offers Wine Aroma and Taste classes, a hands-on experience geared towards identifying wines.
The Keuka Wine Trail is more than wine tastings it is also about dining and shopping. In the quaint village of Hammonsport check out the handcrafted items, including rugs woven by Afghan refugees, at Lime Berry. It is Christmas every day on the second floor of the Cinnamon Stick. Grab a quick lunch at the Crooked Lake Ice Cream Parlor or dine at award-winning Village Tavern Restaurant where Chef Lerman has created his own product line and it isn’t all about wine. They serve over 130 different beers.
The Chocolate Trail and more
Corning’s Gaffer District and Marriott’s Fairfield Inn have partnered to create the Chocolate Trail. Upon checking in at the Fairfield Inn participating guests receive chocolate treats and coupons for samples from merchants in the Gaffer District, the city’s historical business area. Sonya at The Tea Chest makes her own chocolates, Beyond Baskets features locally made chocolates, the School House Country Store has chocolate candles, and the ultimate chocolate lover’s delight is the decadent Chocolate Pate at Three Birds Restaurant. Steuben County is home to many nature trails including those in Pinnacle and Stony Brook State Parks along with sections of the Finger Lakes Trail.
Hit the trail and discover glass, art, handicrafts, dining, wine, and more – all in Steuben County. For more information check corningfingerlakes.com or call 866-946-3386.