Letchworth State Park, renowned as the “Grand Canyon of the East,” is one of the most scenically magnificent areas in the eastern U.S. The Genesee River roars through the gorge over three major waterfalls between cliffs–as high as 600 feet in some places–surrounded by lush forests. The Upper Falls, also called Vale of the Three Falls, has an active railroad trestle crossing immediately above it.
We arrived back at the Watkins Glen International raceway to “Drive the Glen” at 12:00. We followed the pace car down the front stretch into the Ninety, twist, climb and claw our way up through the esses and onto the back-stitch, braking as we hit the Inner Loop and navigated the Carousel turn, then dropped off the face of the earth into the depths of the turn-heavy Boot, climbed our way out into Turn Ten, regain our senses and make a run for the finish line. For 3 laps around the track gave us an appreciation of what the drivers have to deal with as they twist and turn around the track. Save
We traveled to Corning, nicknamed “The Crystal City.” Corning is a small city with a big history linked to glassmaking and is the home of the Corning Museum of Glass. At the museum, we watched the Hot Glass Demo. A master glassmaker took a glowing gob of molten glass, on the end of a pipe and skillfully shape it into a sculpture.
We did a make your own glass class where we made a flower. We chose the colors and pattern of the flower we would be making, dressed in the safety gear provided, and had a seat in the glassblower’s bench. A professional staff guided us through the multi-step process of glass sculpting. We used traditional glassmaking tools to stretch and shape molten glass. After the glass was sculpted, the flower was placed in an oven to begin an overnight slow cooling process. Our flowers would not be ready for pick up until the next day so we had them shipped.
Bully Hill Winery, located overlooking the Keuka Lake, was a fun place from the time we walked in until we left. The venue was cute and festively decorated. In 1970 Walter Taylor with his father, Greyton H. Taylor, founded Bully Hill. It produces 200,000 cases of wine a year and has over 150,000 visitors a year. The wines were good but are not considered premium wines. Which may be the reason we liked them and why they are the second largest wine producer in Upstate NY. Save Save
Rocky Hill Pottery was on schedule as one of our activities. We arrived and looked at the pottery in the shop. The owner of the studio then gave us a demo on how to use the clay and wheel. It was then our turn to put our clay on the potter’s wheel. We learned to center the clay, to open and create the floor of the pot, and to thin the walls to shape the form of the pot. Finally, we stretched the walls being careful not to stretch the pot too far. Our pots had to be fired and glazed, so we had them shipped to us. Save
After touring local wineries, Debbie at the Black Sheep Inn recommended Snug Harbor, just outside of Hammondsport. The restaurant is located right off the shore of Lake Keuka’s. It was a quaint little restaurant built-in the 1890’s. There were several options for seating, a two-story porch, under the veranda or inside. We decide to take a table by the fireplace inside. It was a relaxing evening.