New York

Four Reasons to Visit Schenectady County this Summer

Have you taken a ride to Schenectady County lately? While we made a day trip this past winter, there’s something special about this area in the summer - the patios come alive downtown, the window boxes in the Stockade District overflow with flowers, and the summer breeze flows through the open doors and windows of shops and galleries. With a few months left before the snow flies (ah!), here are four reasons to visit this summer and fall (along with some of our favorites along the way!):

Schenectady County NY Travel Guide

One - The History and Charm

Stockade District Schenectady NY

Stockade Historic District: A gem of the city proper, the Stockade Historic District is a favorite of ours and reminds us just a bit of strolls through Charleston or Savannah. The beautiful architecture, the perfectly planted window boxes, the brick walkways, and the streets lined with American flags had me smitten. We loved taking a peek at the plaques on the homes as we walked through, with some homes dating back to the 1700’s. On our list for next time: one of the walking tours of the neighborhood offered through the Schenectady County Historical Society - Tom has his eye on the beer tour, and I’m all about the Stockade Walkabout where you can tour inside the homes!

Mabee Farm: You know we can’t resist a good ol’ barn, and Mabee Farm Historic Site in Rotterdam Junction was first on our list. From the 1760’s barn to the riverside historic home, and of course, the flower garden, this is a must for a tour, a picnic, or just a stroll on the grounds! We’re pretty tempted to head back down for their Fall Festival and their Farm to Fork Dinner in October - can only imagine how pretty it is here in the fall!

Two - The Breweries

We’ve heard so much about the awesome breweries popping up in Schenectady County and we couldn’t wait to check them out. We stopped by two of the six on their list, and we can’t wait to get back down to check off a couple more (and if you go, it might be worth it to get a Passport for a flight at each!).

Wolf Hollow Brewing Company | West Glenville: First up, Wolf Hollow. Outdoor patio - check. Adirondack chairs around a fire pit - check. Green space with lawn games - check. A fun atmosphere and great beer to boot (we tried their lemon lime sour - perfection!). Bonus points for their proximity to Riverside Maple Farms for some post-drink sweets!

Great Flats Brewing | Schenectady: Next up, Great Flats. Again, awesome atmosphere with garage doors that open to the street, super friendly people (thanks for the dinner recommendation, Harry!), and fantastic beer. Two thumbs up from Tom on their Skip Day IPA, and the Pink Guava Sour was like a little bit of summer in a glass. Can’t wait to head back soon to beat Tom in ping pong :)

Three - Sweets + Eats

Storied Coffee | Scotia: Our first stop of the day, Storied Coffee in Scotia was the perfect intro to a day in Schenectady County. We grabbed a table by the window in their beautiful, sunny space, enjoyed a cup of coffee and devoured a banana muffin and blueberry scone. We loved that they support other small business owners with their curated shop corner, and that they partner with local favorites Kru Coffee and Rock Hill Bakehouse, too!

Jumpin’ Jacks | Scotia: A staple in Schenectady County, we couldn’t pass through without a pit stop for lunch at the classic roadside drive in, Jumpin’ Jacks. We got a kick out of listening to the regulars joking around with the staff while in line, and if you’re looking for something classic, quick, and fried, this will definitely hit the spot.

Riverside Maple Farms | Glenville: Turns out Maple Season is all year in Schenectady County! We were thrilled to stumble upon Riverside Maple after leaving Wolf Hollow Brewing (and turns out there will be a wooded trail connecting the two very soon!). After a quick tasting, we made a bee line for the soft serve machine and left with one dish of maple ice cream and two spoons. I’m not entirely sure how we made it out of the gift shop without the maple kettle corn and maple cotton candy, but there’s always next time!

Malcolm’s | Schenectady: Run, do not walk, to Malcolm’s. We initially planned on just popping in for a drink after seeing their charming exterior, but once we saw the menu (and experienced the gorgeous and oh so friendly atmosphere inside!), we couldn’t resist staying for just a few bites. We started with the honey roasted carrots, which were fabulous, and we had to try the Elote after seeing it at another table - grilled corn with roasted garlic aioli and pecorino cheese - so, so good. Chef Justin Feliciano outdid himself, and scored bonus points for his celery ice cream. That’s right - CELERY ice cream. Not necessarily something I thought I’d like, but we loved it. Can’t wait to try more of their menu very soon!

Malcolm's Restaurant Schenectady

Four - The Shopping

Shopping was not necessarily on my radar this trip, but after stumbling upon both of these stores, let’s just say it shot up to the top of my list for next time!

Bluebird Home + Gift | Schenectady: Perfectly styled and curated, I knew we were going to be here a while the second we walked in. Bluebird is stocked with the most gorgeous home goods as well as an amazing selection of vintage - including vintage Persian rugs! Yes, please! I’m following along with them on Instagram now and am already tempted to head back down - we’re new regulars, for sure.

B.Inspired | Scotia: Just across the street from Storied Coffee, we were so happy to see the open sign pop up just as we finished our muffin. I wanted one of each as soon as we stepped in the door, from the woven seagrass drinkware, to the gorgeous pillows and textiles, to the perfectly distressed clay planters. Another perfect spot to shop for gifts, or to send your husband to shop for your gifts ;)

Until next time, Schenectady! And with all of the gems we discovered, next time will be sooner than later!

Schenectady Travel Guide Things to Do

*This post is in partnership with our friends at Discover Schenectady. We were so thrilled for the opportunity to share this charming area with you!

Postcard from Rensselaerville, NY

We’ve been more than ready for a cruise on a back country road with the windows down, so when the sun finally came out this past weekend, we couldn’t pile into the Jeep fast enough. This time, we headed south. And while we travel the Northway between Glens Falls and Albany frequently, it’s rare that we venture off the beaten path once we get to the Albany area. So, we were excited to partner with Discover Albany to explore some of the hilltowns west of the city of Albany, especially since it just so happens there’s one town in particular that we’ve got heartstrings attached to…

Rensselaerville NY Guide

Turns out, a love for small towns runs in the family. Tom’s great-grandfather, Dr. Thomas Ordway, was the Dean of Albany Medical College from 1915-1937. During that time, his friend and colleague Edmund Niles Huyck introduced him to the beauty that was Rensselaerville, New York. Dr. Ordway purchased a farmhouse on Pond Hill Road as a vacation home away from the hospital in Albany, which the family enjoyed for years to come. I’ve always loved hearing stories about Rensselaerville from Tom’s mother and his Grandma Jane, and it was clear from our first visit that it’s a truly special place.

So, history lesson aside, we’re excited to share some stops from our most recent day trip with you! Off we go!

EAT + DRINK

Kuhar Farm Cafe Rensselaerville NY

Breakfast, Lunch, + Sweets | Kuhar Family Farm Café: The sweetest people and the best food, this is the place to grab brunch in town on Saturday morning. It’s also the only place, but even if it wasn’t, we’d still be here ;) Tom ran in to grab us a couple of breakfast sandwiches (egg and cheese, loaded up with veggies on a perfectly toasted brioche bun) while I stayed back with the pups, and when I looked at the photos he snapped later, I couldn’t believe he hadn’t grabbed one of those pastries on the counter! Next time, for sure (ahem, right Tom?!). They’re open for dinner on Wednesday evenings and brunch on Saturdays, so if you go, be sure to plan your visit around their schedule if you’d like to grab a bite. And if you’re there for dinner, get the chickpea and spinach fritters - so good!

Post-Hike Drinks | Helderberg Brewery Taproom: Conveniently located right next to the Kuhar Café, this was the perfect spot to grab drinks after our hike (and bonus - they’re dog friendly!). We loved the vintage chairs out on the porch, where we sat sipping our drinks and enjoying the breeze up on the hill. The farm brewery is operated by the Carey Institute as part of their Sustainable Communities program with over 90% of their hops and grain coming from local farms. And, if you’re not into craft beer, they also have New York State wines and ciders (Nine Pin for me, please!).

Helderberg Brewery Taproom Rensselaerville NY

SEE + DO

Hike | The Huyck Preserve: The big draw for us on that sunny Saturday was the Huyck Preserve, a gorgeously maintained nature preserve with over 12 miles of trails, which meander through forests, fields, wetlands, and around beautiful Lake Myosotis. The gem of the Preserve is Rensselaerville Falls - a 120 foot waterfall - and that was the trail we picked for the day, along with a portion of the Lake Myosotis Trail.

Rensselaerville Falls Huyck Preserve

It’s been a while since we’ve taken the dogs on a hike, and the Lake Myosotis Trail was especially great for our (dare I say - senior?!) boys. With just the sounds of the birds and the waterfalls beyond, it was the perfect peaceful afternoon away from it all.

Next time, we’re looking forward to checking out the Ordway Trail, which runs behind Tom’s great-grandparents’ old farmhouse on Pond Hill Road and connects with the Race Track, which his great-grandfather built behind their house for the locals to enjoy horse races.

Picnic | Lake Myosotis: The picnic tables and rustic wooden benches lining the east side of Lake Myosotis were the ideal spot for us to finally dive into those sandwiches from Kuhar Café. The lake was quiet, aside from one couple gliding along the shoreline in their canoe. The lake allows non-motorized boats only, which we love, and we made a mental note to bring our canoe down with us when we return.

See | Carey Institute for Global Good: We were lucky to get a tour of this beautiful and historic country estate, which is now a multi-faceted creative institute housing the Logan Nonfiction Program for writers and filmmakers, the Sustainable Communities Program, the Center for Learning in Practice, an Art and Music Program, and a meeting and retreat center. They host a variety of events throughout the year (like this Historic Walking Tour and this Pub Crawl), as well as hosting featured artists monthly in their Guggenheim Gallery.

Browse | Rensselaerville Library: There’s just something special about a small town library, and this one was particularly charming (just look at that exterior!). We couldn’t resist popping in to browse, and were immediately drawn to the sitting room on the second floor and a sweet vintage yellow sofa overlooking the back lawn, which slopes down to the creek below. Perfect place to curl up with a book for the afternoon.

Rensselaerville Library NY

Tour | Rensselaerville Historical Society: Housed in the old red grist mill on Main Street, it was so neat to take a peek at how the Grist Mill would have run back in the day. That, and we loved the old signage displayed on the walls.

Rensselaerville Historical Society

Stroll | Historic Main Street: Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the hamlet of Rensselaerville is filled with historic homes and beautiful architecture. While you can easily drive through, getting out of the car gave us a completely different perspective, and we loved seeing the details of the old homes up close (especially the old door knockers, carriage houses and gardens!).

Rensselaerville NY

SHOP

Art | Way Out Gallery: Just across the street from The Historical Society, it was fun to pop in to see some work from local artists (like this exhibit - Photographs and Schrapnel!).

Antiques | Chipped, Tarnished & Torn, South Westerlo: We couldn’t let the day go by without finding ourselves an antique shop, and we were so happy to stumble upon this one on our way home. I was, of course, drawn to this wall of blue and white, and we were excited to find out that he has a barn sale across the street most every weekend during the summer! We’ll be back for that, without a doubt.

South Westerlo NY

Until next time, Rensselaerville! We’ll see you again sooner than later. And if you’ve visited any of the hilltowns, outside Albany, we’d love to hear your suggestions for next trip!

*This post is in partnership with our friends at Discover Albany. We were so thrilled for the opportunity to share a place that is near and dear to our hearts with you!

Exploring Washington County, NY - Antiques Edition

Fort Ann Antiques | Antique Shops in Washington County

We’ve spent many an afternoon cruising along the backroads of Washington County in the Wagoneer. With rolling hills, old barns, covered bridges, and beautiful views, it’s easy to see why we keep coming back. There’s something about small towns that we love, and Washington County just has an extra special combination of charming Main Streets, hardworking farms and the nicest people (we know that even better based on the number of people who stop to help when we’re broken down out there in the Wagoneer!).

We’re so excited to partner with our friends at Washington County Tourism to share more about this beautiful area that’s both close to our home and close to our hearts. And what better way to kick it off than with one of our favorite activities - antiquing! Read on for six antique shops to visit in Washington County (we’re just scratching the surface here - there are so many more!), AND once you’re done reading, you can watch all of our antiquing adventures unfold in our first video at the end of the post!

Fort Ann Antiques | Whitehall, NY

Washington County Antiques - Fort Ann Antiques

We’ve driven by here hundreds of times on our way into Vermont and out to Maine, and each time we promise that we’ll stop on our way home (which, of course, never happens since we’re always so eager to see the pups!). Anyway, we were so excited to finally make Fort Ann Antiques the destination for once, and after our experience it looks like we’ll be doing that much more often (in fact, we’ve gone twice in the last month!).

With a little bit of everything, it’s easy to spend hours here (which, by the way, we did). One of the best parts of antiquing, in my opinion, is the anticipation of what gems might be hiding around the next corner - and here that just went on and on! Some favorites: a great selection of old wooden soda crates, a vintage pie basket that I may need to go back for, a stoneware water cooler that I also may need to scoop up, vintage paint by numbers and oil paintings, and… I could go on. We left with an armful of treasures and can’t wait to go back in a month or two to see what’s new.

While you’re in town: grab coffee and a blueberry scone at Historic Grounds, a - you guessed it - historic 1906 brick building converted into a charming coffee house.

The Village Booksmith | Hudson Falls, NY

A gem hidden right before our eyes on Route 4 in Hudson Falls, we were so happy to stumble upon The Village Booksmith. We love looking to old books for inspiration, and there are shelves upon shelves to flip through here. Ranging from recent “vintage” like Goosebumps (anyone else grow up reading them?!) to antiques, this was another place we could’ve spent all afternoon...which was a fairly common theme this trip!

I’m always on the hunt for a great read, but I’m also always on the hunt for great books to add as decor around the house. Titles like “Adventures to Come” will always have a place on our bookshelves. We left with “Vacationland USA” in hand (a 1970’s guide to road trips and adventures), and a plan to return soon when we have a couple more hours to spare.

While you’re in town: check out the newly opened Hudson River Brewhouse for coffee or beers, and if you’re hungry for dinner, hop over to Forged!

Greenwich Hardware Antiques | Greenwich, NY

Greenwich Hardware Antiques Washington County NY

A favorite of ours, we’ve visited many times before - how could we not with that charming stained glass sign calling us in off of Main Street? Once a hardware store, we love popping in to peruse their two floors of antiques, along with the barn out back.

They have a great mix of more formal antiques along with country pieces, vintage signage, and furniture. A stand out about this shop are the tags hanging from the items - thoughtfully handwritten, you’ll find the history of the item, what it might have been used for, and where it came from. One of the best parts of antiquing is the history and stories, and we love being able to find out more - whether it was picked from an old barn, or came from a farmhouse outside of town - the stories behind the items make them all the more special.

While you’re in town: stop in for a brewski at Argyle Brewing Co., or head to Greenwich Village Cafe or Lynn’s Country Cafe for some lunch.  

Cambridge Antiques Center | Cambridge, NY

With a little bit of everything spanning 2 floors, Cambridge Antiques is another place you could easily spend an afternoon. Some of my favorites are always waiting on the landing at the top of the stairs - vintage signage, rustic wooden trunks, and a bit of blue-and-white chinoiserie. This is another place with a great mix of formal and country / rustic, and a fantastic selection of lighting (perfect for anyone restoring an old home!). Oh! And the vintage rugs - I was bending down to look at one around every turn.

We loved talking with the owner about where some of his pieces had come from and subsequently, the homes or buildings to which they’ve gone. After spending a few hours in antique shops like this one, it’s easy to see that we’d be just as happy (and hey, so would the environment!) if we filled our house with previously loved things instead of buying all new.

Hubbard Block Antiques | Cambridge, NY

Just down the street in Cambridge, Hubbard Block is a smaller shop with a lot of heart. It’s always so great chatting with the owners of shops in these small towns, and this one was no exception. We loved being pointed in the direction of some of her favorites, and we’re always smitten with a good Christmas room (Hubbard Block has a great one!).

Tom’s clear winner here were the old magazines and license plates (which I basically had to drag him away from), and there’s a decent chance I’ll be heading back to scoop up a pretty Delft Blue planter that I had my eye on!

While you’re in town: grab a cookie or three at Round House Bakery Cafe (highly recommend the ginger spice cookie..okay, and the maple cookie!), and check out what’s playing at historic Hubbard Hall.

Eagle Bridge Antique Center | Eagle Bridge, NY

Quite possibly the largest shop we visited this trip, this was definitely a place with a surprise around every corner. When I say there was a little bit of everything, I mean it! Vintage board games, pull-down classroom maps, Hess trucks (Tom’s favorite), lots of blue and white jars and vases (I needed a cart), vintage picnic baskets, old frames, you name it.

Everything seemed to bring up a memory from our childhood - whether it was a toy we played with or finding something that one of our grandparents had at their house when we were growing up. That’s the great thing about shopping for antiques - so much nostalgia. We left with as much as we could carry, and they’ll be seeing more of us in the future for sure!

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We’re excited to have worked with Cornell Digital and 8 of Eight Strategies to bring our antiquing adventure to life through video! You’ll laugh, you’ll cry (just kidding), and you’ll roll your eyes along with me at everything Tom wants to buy ;) But most importantly, we’re hoping you’ll be inspired to plan a little day trip to beautiful Washington County, a place that’s near and dear to our hearts.

Until next time, Washington County!


*This post was in partnership with our friends at Washington County NY Tourism, a place we’ve visited and loved for as long as we can remember. You’ll see the Wagoneer winding along the backroads here frequently, and we’re thrilled to have the opportunity to share some of our favorite places in the county with you. Thank you for supporting the businesses and organizations that support The Yellow Note.

24 Hours in the Southern Adirondacks

In partnership with our friends at Warren County Tourism and VisitLakeGeorge.com

With winter winding down (…maybe?), we’ve been itching to get away to soak in the last of this snowy season. One of the best parts of living in Glens Falls is the proximity to places that feel a world away, but in reality are a quick drive from home. Case in point: the southern Adirondacks of Warren County.

Gore Mountain Travel Guide

Within 40 minutes, we found ourselves winding through the mountains, between lakes and along the Hudson River. We were excited to be reminded how much the western portion of the county has to offer, especially in the winter. While Gore Mountain is a major draw, relaxation (okay, and eating) was the name of our game, and we’re looking forward to sharing some of our favorites from the North Creek / Chestertown / Warrensburg area with you!

Fern Lodge ADK

STAY

The Fern Lodge | On Friends Lake in Chestertown | Fern Lodge is one of those places that instantly feels like home (Shadow, the sweet yellow lab as the lead member of the welcoming committee sure helped!). We entered to a roaring fire in the stone fireplace of the great room, a snowy lake view out the back windows, and the cheerful welcome of the owners, Sharon and Greg (and their adorable labs, Shadow and Noche!).

The lodge has just five rooms (each with their own fireplace), which makes it the perfect place for a quiet getaway, or the perfect place to enjoy some wine and conversation with other couples! We opted for a bit of both and ended up having the very best time.

Fern Lodge Friends Lake NY

It felt a bit like we’d rented our very own Adirondack camp for the weekend (and like we’d won the vintage rug lottery - couldn’t get over the amazing collection throughout!). Each room is completely different, and though I hate to play favorites, check out the amazing bed in the Pine room!

We both left feeling like we’d gotten away for a week, despite just staying one night. We can’t wait to go back to experience the property in the summer, with a glass of wine in the Adirondack chairs overlooking Friends Lake below. Oh, and how could I forget - a ride in their boat!

Southern Adirondack Travel Guide

EAT + DRINK

Breakfast | The Fern Lodge | It doesn’t get much better than a delicious breakfast just steps from a cozy fire, with two pups underfoot (the comforts of home!). The smells of coffee and the crackle of the fire lured us downstairs, and we were spoiled with fresh fruit and yogurt, French toast with local maple syrup, and an amazing egg strata. All while sweet Shadow weaved his way around the table, trying to figure out who was the likeliest of the bunch to drop a bit of bacon :)

Coffee + Pastry | Cafe Sarah | North Creek | The first sign that caught our eye on our drive into North Creek, Cafe Sarah was just as cute inside as it is outside. The perfect spot to pop into for a coffee, and once at the counter, we couldn’t pass up a maple glazed cinnamon roll. SO good. Everyone deserves a second breakfast on vacation, right?

cafe-sarah-blog.jpg

Lunch | Main Street Ice Cream Parlor | Chestertown | A must! Our first time here was this past fall, and their breakfast was so good that I contemplated hanging around until lunch ;) Needless to say, we were excited to come back for sandwiches (and just to spend some more time in this amazing space - it’s straight out of the pages of Country Living Magazine!). We both ordered the grilled cheese, which was perfect with their addition of red onions and tomatoes. We didn’t have room left for dessert, but that gives us an excuse to come back again soon!

Main-Street-Ice-Cream.jpg

Sweets | Izzy’s Market & Deli | North Creek | We love a good old fashioned country store, and Izzy’s gave us all of those warm and fuzzy vibes as soon as we walked in. From the old tin ceilings to the beadboard walls and creaky wood floor, it’s everything you’d want in a small town store. It looked like the perfect spot for a coffee or a sandwich, but we made a bee-line for the chocolate chip cookies on the counter (which, by the way, were amazing. And huge!).

Izzy's Market North Creek NY

More Sweets | Barkeater Chocolates | North Creek | Since we can never get enough sweets, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to swing into one of our favorites - Barkeater Chocolates. Tom loves their Sea Salt chocolate bars, and after trying a few free samples of the Black Bear bar - we had to pick up a couple (made with black raspberry and black pepper - so unexpected and so good!).

Barkeater Chocolates North Creek NY

Dinner + Drinks | barVino | North Creek | The place to go for dinner in North Creek, we had heard so many great things about barVino and couldn’t wait to try it. A beautiful space, with a fireplace and tables on one side and a lively bar on the other. We lucked out with a spot at the bar and enjoyed the perfect dinner of small plates and wine. Our favorites: the deviled eggs (amongst the best we’ve ever had!) and the deep fried Brussels sprouts (…and the frites..and the hummus..oh! And the bread!). Can’t wait to go back again soon (and we’ll snap some photos next time - it’s easy to forget about photos with five plates of delicious food in front of us)!

DO

Snowshoe | Since I don’t ski (I know, I know), snowshoeing has always been my winter sport of choice. We were so happy to learn that we could just slip on our snowshoes (Fern Lodge has some you can borrow if you don’t have your own), and snowshoe off the beach onto the frozen lake below the Lodge. We lucked out with a gorgeous sunset, and as beautiful as it was in the snow, we couldn’t help chatting about how pretty it must be here in the warmer months as well. And what could be better than catching a glimpse of the smoke coming out of the chimney at the Lodge as we made our way back, and knowing a fire and a glass of wine were waiting for us?!

Snowshoe Friends Lake NY Adirondacks

On our list for next time: ski lessons at Gore Mountain, just about 25 minutes away from Fern Lodge!

SHOP

Deadwood Mountain Trading Company | Warrensburg | Is there anything better than a Bernese Mountain Dog as a shop greeter? Sweet Leica (named after the camera!) the pup met us at the door at Deadwood Mountain Trading, and she was as beautiful as the goodies in the shop! Stocked with gorgeous pieces from local artists, this is definitely worth the stop if you’re in or around Warrensburg!

Deadwood Mountain Trading Company Warrensburg NY

Riverside Gallery | Warrensburg | We spotted this beautiful old building as we headed north to Friends Lake and had to turn around so that we could pop in. They offer traditional framing services (which is great, because we have a pile of maps and prints to be framed!), as well as a room dedicated to items from local artists (loved the hooked wool pillows!). We’ll be back - pile of prints in tow ;)

Riverside Gallery Warrensburg NY

The Foothills | North Creek | One peek in the windows and we knew this shop would be a gem. A perfectly curated mix of new and vintage, and one of those places where each time we walked towards the door to leave, something else caught our eye. Loved those red galvanized trays (and the stools underneath!).

The Foothills North Creek NY

Hudson River Trading Company | North Creek | Housed in a restored 1898 building (with the original horse stable in the basement!), Hudson River Trading is chock full of quintessential Adirondack home goods and clothing. Stocked with favorites like Hudson Bay, Woolrich, and Pendleton, they also had plenty of vintage pieces (like those snowshoes!), and basically everything you’d need for the Adirondack camp of your dreams.

Hudson River Trading Company North Creek NY

Panther Mountain Traders | Chestertown | If you thought the log cabin exterior was beautiful, wait until you see the beautifully curated collection inside Panther Mountain Traders. We love the vintage inspired pennants, and wanted to take home pretty much everything you see on that table below (those wooden bowls, in particular!). Just down the road from Main Street Ice Cream Parlor, this is the perfect place to shop off some calories from lunch!

Panther Mountain Traders Chestertown NY

Can’t wait to re-trace our steps again this spring and summer to see the area in a new light. Have any North Creek / Chestertown / Warrensburg favorites? We’d love to hear!

*This post is in partnership with our friends at Warren County Tourism and VisitLakeGeorge.com, a destination close to our hearts and just outside our door. Thank you to The Fern Lodge for welcoming us as their guests. We’re always thrilled to discover these nearby gems. After immediately recommending this trip to family and friends, we’re thrilled to pass along the tips to you! Thanks for supporting the businesses that support The Yellow Note.

Leaf Peeping in Lake George, New York

In partnership with our friends at Cape Cod Potato Chips

Foliage season is one of my favorites. Okay, it’s definitely my favorite. The food, the colors, the cozy fires. If you blink, you might miss it, and that’s why we like to stretch our enjoyment of the season as much as humanly possible. Come September 1st, I’m glued to the foliage forecast websites. We start the season peeping the foliage in the High Peaks region of the Adirondacks, followed by Vermont from north to south, and around mid to late October, we’re finally able to enjoy the peak colors a bit closer to home in the Lake George region of New York.

Last weekend, we packed our favorite road trip snack - Cape Cod Potato Chips - and made a day trip up the western shore of the lake. Read on for a few of our stops along the way!

Lake George Picnic

SEE + DO

Hike | The Pinnacle | A popular local hike, this is a quick one with an amazing view. We lucked out with the lookout to ourselves, and as we sat there, the first snowflakes of the season began to fall - pretty magical! Since it’s just not possible for us to hike without a snack, we couldn’t help but open up our Cape Cod Potato Chips to enjoy just a few before we stopped for lunch later on.

Lake George The Pinnacle Hiking

Drive | Prospect Mountain | If hiking isn’t your cup of tea, you can still get a great view of the lake by driving up Prospect Mountain. It’s a 5.5 mile drive up the mountain with a few places to pull over and enjoy the view along the way. And fun fact: this was actually one of the first things Tom and I did together when we started dating :)

See | Sabbath Day Point Overlook | As you make your way up Route 9N (Lake Shore Drive), you’ll pass Northwest Bay (one of our favorite spots for a quick paddle!), and after winding your way through a colorful forest, you’ll find yourself back on the shore at an expansive lookout of the northern portion of the lake. We’ve stopped here dozens of times, and the view never gets old.

What to Do Lake George, NY

Stroll | Silver Bay YMCA | It’s been on my list for ages to pull off and explore the Silver Bay YMCA (founded in 1902 and on the National Registry of Historic Places!). We finally made the stop and I’m so glad we did. With stunning views of the lake and historic buildings dotting the property, this is definitely a place I could spend a full day exploring. We are already excited to come back in the summer months to take advantage of the canoes and kayaks. This trip, we were pretty happy just pulling up a couple of Adirondack chairs and enjoying the view and a few leftover Cape Cod Potato Chips before we got back on the road.

Cape Cod Chips Lake George

EAT + DRINK

Breakfast | Bolton Beans | We love the nostalgia and charm of this 1946 Service Diner. Though we opted for a light breakfast sandwich to fuel our morning hike this time, the pancakes and omelets are in our regular rotation here. This is a popular spot amongst locals and tourists alike, so if you go during busy season, get there early to snag a spot!

Bolton Breakfast Where to Eat

Lunch | Hague Market | While Vermont tends to get all the love for its country stores, we have a hidden gem tucked right into our own backyard. The Hague Market is the Adirondack’s oldest running general store, and the perfect spot to grab a couple of sandwiches, sodas, and peanut butter cookies for lunch. We brought along our trusty Cape Cod Potato Chips, and while Tom had already eaten half the bag, we somehow managed to have enough left to enjoy with lunch (which by the way, we ate in the Hague Town Park across the street while enjoying the prettiest view!).

Lake George Travel Guide

SHOP

Antiques | We’ll brake for antique shops and barn sales, always. A couple of our regular stops in Bolton Landing are Black Bass and Lakeview Antiques, and while we didn’t have time this trip, we’re itching to get up to Longergan’s Antiques in Ticonderoga.

Antiques Bolton Landing NY

Would love to hear your Lake George area favorites! And I’m sure Tom would love to hear your favorite road trip snacks ;) Until next time, Lake George!

This post was in partnership with Cape Cod Potato Chips, a brand we’ve brought along on many a road trip over the years. Thanks so much for supporting the brands that support The Yellow Note!

Roadtrip to Brewery Ommegang

After a summer spent close to home (and an unexpected hiatus for our Wagoneer as it awaits a new engine), we were itching for a mini road trip this month. We made a quick trip to Cooperstown last fall, but the one thing on our list that we didn’t have time for was a stop at Brewery Ommegang. So, with the forecast calling for sunny skies and 80 degrees, we decided there was no better location for a quick adventure.

Brewery Ommegang - Cooperstown Barn

You know your destination is going to be good when you wind up using barns as landmarks along the way. We oohed and ahhed at the farms, fields, and views along our drive, and upon pulling up to the farmstead Brewery, with its welcoming white archway framing the rolling hills behind it, we immediately decided that a trip back during foliage season is a must. If you’re looking for a mini road trip destination this fall, read on for our favorites from our trip to Brewery Ommegang.

Ommegang Brewery Cooperstown Travel

EAT + DRINK

brewery ommegang cooperstown ny

Café Ommegang | First things first - after a couple of hours on the road, we were ready for a bite to eat, and of course, a beer! Brewery Ommegang just recently renovated its Visitors’ Center + Café and we were excited to enjoy it from a table under their new outdoor pavilion, with views of the hills and hops behind us. We picked our favorites after a flight (Witte for me + the Nirvana IPA for Tom), and ordered some snacks, which we quickly devoured before our tour.
Don’t miss: the frites! Served with truffle mayo, garlic aioli, and my fav - the sun-dried tomato pesto - they were gone in an embarrassing amount of time.

Brewery Ommegang Flight of Beer
brewery ommegang cafe

SEE + STROLL

The Grounds | The brewery grounds are a destination in and of itself. With no shortage of space to roam, we grabbed our beers, sipped, and strolled. A quick walk up the back hill had us exploring the rows of hops, and two pretty perches await for you to rest and take in the view of the brewery below. Highly recommend for sunset!

Brewery Ommegang Cooperstown New York
Cooperstown NY Brewery
Cooperstown NY Brewery

Tour + Tasting | It wouldn’t be a visit here without a behind the scenes look at the brewing process and an even more extensive sampling of their beer. We found new favorites (Fruition for me, Hopstate for Tom), and of course, made our way into the shop afterward to grab some to take home. Get there early on weekends, because tours + tastings filled up fast!

Cooperstown NY Travel Guide - Brewery Ommegang

Don’t miss: the events! Firepit Fridays with live music, drink specials and you guessed it - a bonfire; Brunch Bingo on Sundays, complete with a beermosa (yes, please!); and Bed and Brew - an exclusive craft beer experience in collaboration with The Inn at Cooperstown, including a beer and food pairing dinner (sign me up!). I already have my eyes peeled for their concert schedule next summer - Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats played there this past summer and I can only imagine what a fun show that must’ve been!

And lastly, please oh please, drink responsibly, and arrange for a designated driver or a ride back into town if you’re planning to indulge. Brewery Ommegang recommends A & D Taxi or Uber.

Brewery Ommegang Cooperstown NY Travel Guide

*This post was in partnership with our friends at Brewery Ommegang, a destination we’ve had on our list to visit for years. We were thrilled to finally make the trip and it exceeded our expectations. We’ve since recommended it to our friends and family, and happily now, to you! Thanks for supporting the businesses that support The Yellow Note.

Summer in Hometown, USA - A Glens Falls, New York Travel Guide

If you've been following along for a bit, you'll know we have a serious love for our little hometown of Glens Falls, NY, which only grows deeper in the summertime. Neighbors gather on front porches, couples bike to the Saturday Farmers Market, and families enjoy Friday night movies under the stars in City Park. Our summer nights are spent walking downtown, enjoying drinks on the patios of our favorite restaurants, and listening to the sounds of live music floating through the air from different venues in the city. It's our own little slice of Stars Hollow, and it just keeps on getting better.   

Glens Falls New York Travel Guide

We gave you the run down of our favorite spots in our Winter Guide here, but since this pretty city comes alive in a new way in the summer, we’d love to share our tried and true summer favorites and a few great new spots that have popped up since last post.

Glens Falls NY

WHERE TO EAT

Coffee + Breakfast

Glens Falls NY Breakfast

Fresh ADK: A weekend favorite, we love grabbing breakfast on their sidewalk patio after the Farmers Market. Our usual: avocado toast and the egg white sandwich. Tons of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten free options make this a hit for us, and coming soon: a marketplace selling dry goods and fresh produce. 

Juicin Jar: Perfect for a grab-and-go juice or smoothie, or stick around on their sweet patio for a fresh summer salad. Our top picks: the Berry Bliss Smoothie and every last one of their cookies and muffins - delish!

Breakfast Glens Falls NY

Spot Coffee: The perfect place for a morning coffee made better by the windows that open wide onto Glen Street and the sweet little tables set up out front. We love walking down here first thing in the morning on weekends, sitting outside with the pups, and watching the city wake up. 

Kelly's Roots: Basically Tom's second home, he grabs coffee or a Nutty Kale smoothie here every day on his way to work. We love to relax on their covered patio on weekends with a smoothie or açaí bowl and just maybe some blueberry pancakes on the side ;)  

Spektor: A great coffee spot with a warm, cozy atmosphere. It's one of Tom's usual coffee stops on our way out of town on a road trip. In the nicer weather, they've got some outdoor seating while you're sipping your coffee (Tom) and devouring your cronut (me)! 

Lunch + Dinner

Downtown Social Glens Falls NY

Downtown Social: New this summer, DTS is an exciting addition to downtown that boasts an amazing restaurant space and bar, a stage area for live entertainment, and a speak-easy style Bourbon Room. I honestly can't say what I love more - the atmosphere or the food. Favorites so far: the Breads and Spreads platter, the Vegetable Risotto (so good I've had it twice!), and the Carbonara. Did I mention there's prosecco on draft? See you there ;) 

If that weren't enough, their multi-faceted approach also includes a deli, which just opened! We can't wait to enjoy the space in the mornings over coffee and an egg sandwich.  

Doc's Restaurant Glens Falls NY

Doc's Restaurant and Bar: Also new this summer, we're so excited that Doc's has opened their doors just below the Park Theater (more on that below), and just as excited to see their progress on an outdoor patio coming soon! The perfect spot to enjoy a meal at the bar (beware: the pub mix is so good I had to tell Tom to take it away!), we love their grilled cheese (with mushrooms, asparagus, and red pepper!) and are so happy that they have the Impossible Burger on the menu. We also really love the staff's willingness to put the Mets game on - thanks guys! :) 

Dinner Glens Falls NY

Morgan and Company: One of our favorite date night spots, Morgan and Co. is summer dining at it's finest. Between their beautiful hardwood porch and their stone patio surrounded by blooms, you just can't beat it. You can usually find us at the porch bar enjoying a prosecco (for me) and a Common Roots IPA (for Tom), with our pal Kris the bartender having put in our appetizer before we even sit down :) Our version of Cheers for sure, we just love everyone here. 

Raul's: Overlooking the circle downtown, Raul's has a prime sidewalk patio and the very best margaritas, chips and guac. Bonus points for their commitment to our environment by going straw-less and incorporating great vegetarian and vegan options into their menu!  

Restaurants Glens Falls NY

Davidson Brothers: In the words of my dad, "everyone always looks like they're having so much fun there!" :) . With a perfect outdoor seating area on Glen and Exchange Streets with bistro lights hanging above and live music playing, it's easy to see why. We love grabbing a table for two on the Glen Street side and watching the world go by. 

Park Patio at The Q: Overlooking our beautiful City Park, the Park Patio is a great spot to relax in the evening while enjoying their outdoor fire pits. Don't miss the Park Patio Summer Music Series on Wednesdays from 4-8pm for live music, drinks, and small plates! 

Downtown City Tavern: Our go-to for pizza and benders, DTCT is also a favorite spot for craft beer. With a screen rotating through their extensive selection, you're sure to find a brew that fits the bill. Bonus points for their sunny patio on Elm Street in the summer! 

Samantha's: Always delivering on atmosphere and freshly made comfort food, Samantha's is a weekday favorite. Tom swears by the "Melties" section of the menu (try the Caprese and the Hot Mess!), and I'm all for the Caprese Salad. 

Rock Hill Bakehouse: A popular lunch-time stop during the week, be sure to stick around on weekends for some live music to keep you entertained. A great local staple on Exchange Street with lots of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten free options.  

Drinks

Brewery Glens Falls NY

Mean Max: Join the dart league, test your brain power on trivia night. or just belly up to the bar for a drink. The tap room offers cider, wine, and cocktail options as well and this just in... they've started canning their most popular beers to take home!

Common Roots: A long time favorite of ours, Tom has been known to accidentally take the long way home to pick up a favorite four pack for the fridge. That said, we tend to linger much longer in the summer, enjoying a cold brew and relaxing on the red Adirondack Chairs out front. There's always something going on, from pop-up food trucks, to yoga classes, Wednesday geers and beers, Thursday music series and more.  

Sweets

Ice Cream Glens Falls NY

Coopers Cave: Situated directly on the Warren County Bikeway, Coopers Cave is a great spot to pedal for ice cream on a hot summer day. Grab a couple scoops of their homemade hard ice cream and relax on a picnic table under the shade trees before biking home. The perfect afternoon treat!

Rob and Deb's Frozen Dreams: My favorite place for soft ice cream in the city, their flavor calendar is always on my radar! Though it's tough to pass on my old stand-by (vanilla in a dish with rainbow sprinkles - I know, I'm basically five years old), their chocolate/peanut butter twist and raspberry chocolate twist are high on the list of family favorites. 

WHAT TO DO

Things to Do in Glens Falls New York

Summer Events: We are so lucky to be able to enjoy a full itinerary of events downtown during the summer, from Take a Bite on Wednesdays (featuring small plates of favorite meals from local restaurants), to Friday night Movies in City Park under the stars. On Monday nights, you can find concerts in the City Park Gazebo, and Thursdays bring the Food Truck Corral at The Shirt Factory. And on Saturday morning, you can bet you'll find us at the Farmers Market in the Pavilion downtown.  

Entertainment What to Do Glens Falls

Park Theater: We couldn't love The Park more. Our city has so much history and even more potential, and The Park is the perfect recent representation of this. Thanks to the foresight, determination and investment of local developer Elizabeth Miller and her team, The Park Theater has been completely restored and is once again bringing entertainment to Park Street. From concerts to theater and dance, The Park has a little something for everyone. An added bonus: being able to enjoy drinks and dinner at Doc's Restaurant before a show! Check out the schedule of upcoming events and grab tickets here

Adirondack Theatre Festival: ATF is such a special part of the city in the summer, and it's so exciting to see the award winning talent the festival draws to our little city. Year after year, the festival grows in popularity and continues to bring more dynamic features to the stage. The season is already in full swing and we can't wait to see the next show - The Jedi Handbook! Check out the rest of the season and buy tickets here

Warren County Bikeway: Stretching from downtown Glens Falls all the way to Lake George, the bikeway is the perfect place to pedal in the summer. We mainly use the path to bike to Coopers Cave for ice cream ;) , but this beautiful paved path is perfect for walking, biking, and running on any stretch of the nearly 10 miles. 

Things to do in Glens Falls NY

Crandall Park: Our favorite place to walk the dogs, we're in the park at least once a day (although the pups would rather we were there more!). We love watching the new families of ducks with their ducklings swim on the pond throughout the spring and summer, and spying the turtles sunning themselves on logs. Parents teach their kids to fish in the stocked pond, and you can usually find a hammock or two swinging between the pine trees on a sunny summer day.  

Hyde Collection: Including works by Rembrandt, Degas, Picasso, and Renoir to name a few, the Hyde is a perfect place to while away a summer afternoon. Be sure to take a few minutes to visit the Butterfly Garden behind the Hyde House. Inside tip: admission is free on the second Sunday of the month!

Chapman Museum: We are loving this summer's exhibit - The Secret Life of Signs! An ode to the craftsmanship of these visual landmarks, the exhibit celebrates ghost signs, neon signs, and vintage plastic signs from around the region. Bonus: they are offering walking tours of Glens Falls for an up-close look at the signs of the city and the history behind them.  

WHERE TO SHOP

Glens Falls Shopping

New since our last post, Rude Betty is full of cards and gifts from favorites including Beekman 1802 and Emily McDowell. Visit Fountain Square Outfitters for Patagonia and outdoor gear, Minky Mink for favorite brands like Free People and 7 For All Mankind, and Lake George Olive Oil for the very best - you guessed it - olive oil and vinegar. Check out the Shirt Factory and LARAC Shop for the best works from local artists. For fun stationery and goods designed in Glens Falls, check out Ramble Goods online shop. If you're hunting for antiques, stop by a few of our favorites in the surrounding area: The Fox and the Chicken Coop, and Antiques Market Place

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We hope you have a chance to visit our little city this summer, and love it as much as we do! If you're local, we'd love to hear your summer favorites in the comments! 

For more Glens Falls charm, follow along on Instagram @glensfallsliving

 

24 Hours in Saratoga Springs, New York

While we’re lucky enough to live about 20 minutes from this pretty city, we don’t get down here nearly as much as we’d like. So, since Tom and I were celebrating the 10th anniversary of our first date (which just so happened to be in Saratoga!), we figured it was a perfect time to get away for a little staycation to check out our old favorite spots as well as see what’s new (hint: SO much!).   

First things first: 24 hours is nowhere near enough time to see and do all that Saratoga has to offer. Even just reaching out to a few people for recommendations gave me a list a mile long of restaurants to try, drinks to sip, and things to do. We could put together a 24 hour Saratoga guide every month and it would look completely different and be just as much fun as the one before (in fact, maybe that’s a good idea…!). That said, read on to find out where we stayed, strolled, and dined during our short but sweet 24 hours in Saratoga, and we’d love to hear your favorites for our next trip!

STAY

Saratoga Springs Travel Guide

Saratoga Arms | A beautifully restored Second Empire brick building AND a perfect location right on Broadway: win-win! We were smitten with the wrap around porch from the moment we arrived - perfect for our morning coffee, afternoon drinks, and of course, people watching! :) Inside, we loved the classic charm mixed with modern touches (especially the wallpaper + plaid duo in our room!). A place where you feel like family from the moment you walk through the door, we ended up having wonderful conversations with staff each time we came and went. 

Saratoga Arms Porch

Don’t miss: the chocolate chip cookies that magically appear in the Guest Pantry around 7pm. The best treat to come back to after dinner, and made with Saratoga Potato Chips! 

Saratoga Arms Inn.jpg

STROLL

East Side Historic District | No secret, one of our favorite things to do when we’re exploring a new place is to grab a coffee and stroll the historic neighborhoods. Saratoga is home to some of the most beautiful houses in the area, which will be showcased in this Saturday’s Historic Homes Tour. As luck would have it, we were able to grab a sneak peek into one of the homes on the tour while we were there (150 Phila), and it did not disappoint. We always love seeing people pouring love into old homes now that we live in one ourselves! 
Don’t miss: the tour, of course! If you’re in town, grab your tickets for Saturday’s tour here

Saratoga House Tour.jpg

Broadway and Congress Park | The main street of Saratoga, Broadway is filled with coffee shops, restaurants, boutiques, and so much more. You could easily spend an entire morning (or an entire day!) perusing the shops, and when you need a break, wander through Congress Park (designed by the same architect that planned Central Park!) and claim a seat on one of the benches overlooking the pond.
Don't miss: a couple of our favorite shops - Northshire Bookstore (something about being able to walk through a good book store every once in a while!) and Caroline and Main for the cutest clothing from some favorite brands like Joules and Wooden Ships. 

Saratoga Broadway Guide.jpg

EAT + DRINK

Coffee | Saratoga Coffee Traders | Home of Death Wish Coffee and just a few doors down from Saratoga Arms, this was the perfect spot to grab coffee before a stroll downtown.
Another favorite: Kru Coffee

Breakfast | Saratoga Arms | We both ordered (and happily finished!) the breakfast sampler, and I'm still thinking about those corn cakes. The most delicious spread!
On our list for next time: Sweet Mimi's

Saratoga Arms Breakfast.jpg

Lunch | Farmer's Hardware | A favorite since it opened last year, Farmer's Hardware is our go-to spot for lunch when we're in Saratoga. We were psyched to see that they added the Impossible Burger (a plant based burger) this year, and like everything else on their menu, it did not disappoint! 
Don't leave without: trying the sweet potato tots! Perfect with spicy honey. 

Farmers Hardware Saratoga

Dinner | Henry Street Taproom | After a pretty big lunch, this was the perfect casual spot for a few appetizers and drinks. We're excited to head back with a bigger appetite, since the Maple Brown Sugar Bread Pudding (with salted maple caramel!) sounds right up my alley. 
On our list for next time: Hamlet & Ghost, Osteria Danny, 15 Church

Henry Street Taproom

Looking for more to do in the area? Check out our Glens Falls Travel Guide here!

In my bag this trip: 

Five Upstate NY Maple Farms to Visit this Spring

Vermont typically gets all the love when it comes to maple syrup, but we're lucky to have a long list of amazing maple farms right here in our own back yard! And this time of year, when it's spring but not at all feeling like it, a little road trip and a lotta maple is pretty much the best thing to beat cabin fever. So, if you're up for something sweet, here are a few of our favorite upstate sugar shacks to visit!  

Toad Hill Maple Farm | Athol, NY: The largest of the bunch, the timberframe sugar house at Toad Hill is a beauty. Bonus points for the covered bridge on property, and the wagon ride that takes you over it and through their sugarbush! 
Don't leave without: an enormous bag of maple popcorn, along with the biggest maple leaf bottle of syrup you can buy.

Toad Hill Maple Farm Athol NY

Maple Knoll Farm | Minerva, NY: A most charming sugar house (made with lumber milled from trees on their land!), and the loveliest people. We felt right at home as soon as we walked through the door, and left with a handwritten recipe for maple dip - it doesn't get much better than that!  
Don't leave without: sampling one of their maple donuts, topped with maple dip (grab a jar of maple cream to make your own dip - so good!). 

Maple Knoll Farm.jpg

Rathbun's Maple Sugar House | North Granville, NY: A local favorite, it's hard to believe it was our first time out here! A horse drawn wagon greeted us out front (along with the smell of maple wafting through the air!) and we loved watching them boil sap into syrup from above in the sugar house. 
Don't leave without: devouring their pancake breakfast. The wait was over an hour when we got there, so we'll be back next weekend! 

Rathbuns Maple Granville Washington County

Mapleland Farms | Salem, NY: Home of an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast, and one of the prettiest views in Washington County. Loved checking out their specialty products - need some maple mustard? They've got you covered ;)   
Don't leave without: a bag full of their maple candy (it melts in your mouth!) and a 'gram of the syrup samples in the window, of course. 

Sugar Mill Farm | Greenwich, NY: A classic red-roofed sugar house just outside one of our favorite Washington County towns. Save room for their pancake breakfast, which folks were lining up for when we arrived!
Don't leave without: a jar of their maple cream. Someone has been eating it by the spoonful. Ahem, Tom.

Maple Guide Greenwich NY

If you're not local, you can purchase online from most of the farms mentioned above, as well as our pals at Bixby's Best in Bolton Landing!

Upstate friends - would love to know what your favorites are! Happy Spring! 

Winter in Hometown, USA | A Glens Falls, NY Travel Guide

Allow me to introduce you to Glens Falls - where small-town charm meets big (okay, little) city living. Given the title Hometown, USA by Look Magazine in 1944, the editors described Glens Falls as the typical US hometown that "contained, in microcosm, every aspect of the American idea." And that heavy dose of history and Americana is what we love most about it.   

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We’ve called the city home for the past 7 years (or forever, since I grew up just over the river). No matter where we travel, we’re always happy to come back home. So, it’s high time we put together a travel guide for our own home town! If you ever find yourself in our neck of the woods, tucked between Lake George and Saratoga, come on by! When you do, here are a few of our favorites to get you started (and if you're here in the warmer months, view our summer guide here!). 

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W H E R E  T O  E A T

C o f f e e + B r e a k f a s t

Spektor: The perfect blend of cool and casual with locally roasted coffee from Kru Coffee
Roasters, you won’t be disappointed. Great breakfast + lunch options, but you'll usually find me with a cronut or maple scone, and Tom with a Bulletproof coffee.

Juicin Jar: Our favorite little spot for freshly pressed juice and fruit smoothies. The very freshest menu, best flavors, and lots of vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options, too! My favorite this week: the Very Berry Smoothie - too good.

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Kelly's Roots: Friendly, fresh and local with a West-coast vibe. Kelly’s is the perfect place to grab
a quick coffee and bite to eat (which Tom does every day on the way to work), or linger over breakfast on the weekend (get the chocolate chip pancakes!). 

Kellys Roots.JPG

Fresh ADK: Another downtown addition that has brought more clean-eating options to those
with a dietary restriction. Vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, and all taste great (plus, they’re expanding at the same location to offer a fresh and healthy market - can't wait!). 

Spot Coffee: Another convenient option downtown to drop in, grab a coffee, or have a bite. Open every day until 10pm, they have live music, open mic, and other evening attractions on the menu periodically as well. Tom's fav: the mocha espresso (have you noticed yet that I don't drink coffee?!).

coffee-breakfast-glens-falls-ny-guide.jpg

B r u n c h , L u n c h + D i n n e r

Morgan & Co.: Basically our version of Cheers, you’ll find us here having dinner at the bar at least once a week. The owners and staff are the sweetest, the food is the best, and the location (in a mansion once owned by one of the city’s lumber barons) can’t be beat. Their Sunday brunch is also a favorite – don’t leave without tasting the coffee cake! And I won’t tell you what my favorite dessert is – I want to be sure we’re guaranteed a slice ;) 

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Raul's: Our go-to for Mexican and Margaritas! A downtown staple with a location perfect for people watching, you can usually catch us by the windows polishing off chips and guac. 

Davidson Brothers: Known for their craft beer and pub style menu, the Davidsons played a big role in bringing people back downtown when they opened their brewpub back in 1996. Fun fact: Tom and I went here for beers after offering on both of the houses we’ve purchased in the city, and both offers were accepted! Our own little good luck charm. 

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Downtown City Tavern: Tucked just off Glen Street, the Tavern is a favorite for their rotating craft beer selection and wood-fired pizza. Be sure to top things off with one of their boozy milkshakes if you visit!    

Rock Hill Bakehouse: Every little city needs a great bakery. An easy walk down Exchange
Street brings you a plethora of hand-made and hearth-baked treats (and don't miss the sandwiches!). Great vegan and vegetarian options here as well!

Samantha's Cafe: Conveniently nestled into downtown, this is a great 'gram worthy spot to enjoy their made-to order menu. You must try their “melties” (you can thank us later), and don’t forget the amazing desserts!

Cooper's Cave: Pub, beer, and ice cream – the perfect trifecta. Located right on the Warren County Bikeway, it’s a favorite place to pedal to for a Chopped Salad and a cone come summer! 

D r i n k s

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Mean Max: Awesome craft beer, dart league, trivia, live music. Enough said :) Grab some take out from your favorite downtown spot and head to the tasting room. Success to these guys is simply being able to share their brews with their friends, family, and neighbors. 

Common Roots: Just over the river in South Glens Falls, Common Roots is owned by a father-son duo (recently featured in the New York Times!). With a food truck often parked outside, it’s perfectly cozy inside during the winter and even better in the summer with an outdoor firepit and Adirondack chairs. I’m a big fan of their wild ales, and Tom goes for the Last Light IPA every time.     

W H A T  T O  D O

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Get Outside: We’re so lucky to have Crandall Park and Cole’s Woods in our backyard. Winter offers ice skating on idyllic Crandall Pond, sledding down the hill in Crandall Park, trails to walk the pups through the snowy woods (Murphy and Max’s favorite!) and cross country skiing and snowshoeing in Cole’s Woods. West Mountain is just down the road for downhill skiing and tubing. If you’re up for a walk, wander the charming sidewalked neighborhoods adjacent to Crandall Park, or admire the architecture of the old lumber baron’s mansions lining the main streets downtown.

glens-falls-architecture-homes.jpg

Stay Inside: If staying warm inside is more your thing, there’s plenty to keep you busy. Glens Falls is home to the exceptional Hyde Collection, which includes works by Rembrandt, Degas, Picasso, and Renoir to name a few. To learn a bit more about the history of Glens Falls, make a stop at the Chapman Museum downtown (and admire the Victorian architecture of the DeLong house while you’re there). If you’re in the market for a bit more action, Glens Falls is home to the Adirondack Thunder (an affiliate of the New Jersey Devils), and home games are played downtown at Cool Insuring Arena. Last but certainly not least, if you're in the mood for a show, check out the upcoming events at the Wood Theatre (and in the summer and fall, the Adirondack Theatre Festival and Adirondack Film Festival!).     

W H E R E  T O  S H O P

Where to begin?! Visit Fountain Square Outfitters for Patagonia and outdoor gear, Minky Mink for favorite brands like Free People and Hunter Boots, and Lake George Olive Oil for the very best - you guessed it - olive oil and vinegar. Check out the Shirt Factory and LARAC Shop for the best works from local artists. If you're hunting for antiques, stop by a few of our favorites in the surrounding area: The Fox and the Chicken Coop, and Antiques Market Place

W H E R E  T O  S T A Y

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The Queensbury Hotel: Built in 1926, The Q is a member of Historic Hotels of America and is currently in the midst of a $6 million dollar restoration. We’ve loved seeing the character and charm of the hotel renewed with classic touches like marble floors and subway tile. There are two restaurants on site, Park 26 and Fenimore’s Neighborhood Pub, and we couldn’t be more excited about their future plans for a rooftop bar! 

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We hope you have a chance to visit our little city, and love it as much as we do! Local friends, please share your favorites in the comments! 

Stay tuned for the summer version of the city guide, coming this May!

For more Glens Falls charm, follow along on Instagram @glensfallsliving!  

 

48 Hours in The Catskills

Since we live just a few minutes from a sign that welcomes you to the Adirondack Park, that tends to be the direction we head when looking for hikes or mountain adventure.  That said, we’ve been itching to explore more of this beautiful state we call home, so we were excited to partner with Visit Catskills on a trip to the mountains south of us.  Long story short - we were smitten.   

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We both agreed it was one of the prettiest drives we’ve been on in the ol’ Wagoneer.  I can't count the number of times I must’ve shrieked, “did you see that waterfall?!” as we were winding along the back roads.  We can’t wait to come back in the summer and cruise with the windows down, and experience the hikes, swimming holes, and evenings by the fire.

There are hundreds (thousands?!) of different ways you could spend your weekend in the Catskills, so I won’t pretend to be an expert, but read on to find out how we spent one of our favorite weekends this year:

Friday

10am | Circle W General Store | Palenville  From our driveway in Glens Falls, it’s only about 1.5 hours to the sign that welcomes you to Catskill Park in Palenville, NY.  Just before we crossed into the Park, we stopped into Circle W General Store for a big dose of small town charm and a healthy serving of their sour cream coffee cake (which we immediately wished we’d gotten more of!). 

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10:30am |  Kaaterskill Clove | Palenville  Just up the road, we made a quick stop at the parking area on the left hand side just past Bastion Falls.  There's a beautiful view of Kaaterskill Clove below and it was the perfect place to enjoy our goodies from Circle W.  

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11:00am | Kaaterskill Falls | Palenville  This 260 foot waterfall is a must see if you're in the area, and can be viewed from the top or the bottom of the falls.  Since it was a bit chilly and we had a lot more on our agenda, we opted to take in the view from the top, which is a quick 5-10 minute walk to the viewing platform from the parking area at the end of Laurel House Road.  Directions and trail info here.   

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11:45am | Antiquing | Tannersville  Otherwise known as the Painted Village in the sky, Tannersville is home to some great antique shops - and you guessed it - they're all painted in lovely pastel hues.  Our favorites - Tannersville Antiques and Artisan's Center and The Antique Annex.   

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1:00pm | Phoenicia Diner | Phoenicia  Once we'd worked up an appetite, we cruised 25 minutes south for some milkshakes and the famed all day breakfast at this retro 60's diner.  Classic diner food with a view of the Catskill mountains = total win in my book.  We both agreed we'd be here every Saturday morning if we were local.   

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3:00pm | Golden hour drive | Lew Beach  I gasped when we rounded a bend and spotted the first of many stunning white houses with green trim lining the Beaverkill Valley floor in the Lew Beach area.  Big old farmhouses with wrap around porches, complete with rocking chairs and views of the river spot the landscape.  This area was a favorite and I should have known - the second I typed Lew Beach history into Google, the name Rockefeller surfaced.    

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3:30pm | Livingston Manor Covered Bridge | Livingston Manor We'll always brake for a covered bridge, and this was a beauty - built in 1860! 

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4:00pm | The Arnold House | Livingston Manor We checked in to The Arnold House, our rustic-chic inn for the weekend, just in time to take in the sunset from the back deck.  Once the light faded, we took our seats by the fire in the sunroom until the sound of music from the jukebox lured us downstairs to The Tavern.  We bellied up to the bar for dinner and enjoyed the very best butternut squash ravioli (local from Northern Farmhouse Pasta!), and pumpkin cheesecake for dessert.  Spoiler alert: we loved it so much we ate here the following night, too!  The Arnold House felt like staying at a friend's (11 room) cabin in the woods - it had a friendly, laid back vibe and we loved the vintage details.  And did I mention that each guest receives a hand written note upon check-in?!  Such a nice touch. 

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Saturday

8:00am | Breakfast  Included with our stay at The Arnold House was breakfast in their 1960's style dining hall, complete with local yogurt and house-made granola, pumpkin bread, and make your own waffles.  It felt a little like summer camp as we pored over The Arnold House's travel guides to plan our day amid the hum of other couples doing the same.   

10:00am | Brandenburg Bakery | Livingston Manor There's always room for a second breakfast on vacation, right?  We stopped in for a coffee and a pastry on our way out for the day, and left with a box full of cinnamon buns and danish.  Whoops!

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10:30am | Main Street Farm | Livingston Manor The perfect spot to stop before we got on the road for the day.  Filled to the brim with fresh food from local farms, and if we were in the market for a third breakfast, their sandwich and salad menu looked amazing.  Definitely a place I could sit and stay a while. 

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11:00am | Prohibition Distillery | Roscoe  We had the best time sampling the spirits and chatting with Robert at Prohibition.  It’s always so much fun to meet people with a genuine enthusiasm for a product, and we loved learning about their process from him.  A special bonus - their strong commitment to raising funds and awareness for veterans and their families.   

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Optional Stop | Northern Farmhouse Pasta | Roscoe We wish we'd stopped in to get some of their ravioli to take home after having it at The Arnold House the night before!  Lucky for us, they ship :)

1:00pm | Wayside Cider | Andes I've followed along with Wayside on Instagram for a while now, and was so excited to finally visit!  It did not disappoint and quite honestly, I didn't want to leave!  We enjoyed the best lunch (salad and mac and cheese!), and loved the ciders.  We left with two bottles to take home, and with a new favorite spot in the Catskills.  

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3:00pm | Catskill Brewery | Livingston Manor  After trying (and loving) their IPA at The Arnold House the night before, we had to swing by the taproom on our way back to The Arnold to see where it's all made!  

5:00pm | Drinks & Dinner  We had every intention of making it to The Kaatskeller for some wood fired pizza, but once back at The Arnold House, we couldn't bring ourselves to leave!  Drinks by the fire in the sunroom, followed by round two of dinner at The Tavern, and it was just as good as the night before.  

Alternate Dinner | We also heard great things about The DeBruce, The Heron, and Brushland Eating House

Sunday

7:30am | The Road Home  We missed Woodstock on the way down, so we opted for an alternate route home which took us along the winding Peekamoose Road - one of the prettiest stretches of road on the trip.    

9:00am | Bread Alone | Woodstock  A perfectly charming spot for coffee and breakfast sandwiches (and we also left with a few bags of pastries for our dog sitters...and ourselves :) Don't miss the lemon currant scone!).

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Alternate Breakfast | Gracie's Luncheonette | Leeds  We had a few recommendations to stop at this retro-modern diner...next time!

Optional Stop | Catskill Animal Sanctuary | Saugerties  We visited a few weeks ago and if you're an animal lover like me, this will be your happy place.  I had to visit after seeing this video of Reggie, one of the resident pigs, and falling in love.  Tom told me I didn't stop smiling the entire time.  And, well, neither did he :)  

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We can't wait to spend more time exploring the Catskills, and I would love to know your favorites for our next trip!  

In my bag this trip: Travel CasesRed Coat (similar) / Gray Coat / Plaid Scarf / Bean BootsHiking Boots / Mittens 

*This trip was in partnership with Visit Catskills.  Thank you to The Arnold House for welcoming us as their guests.  As always, all opinions are my own.  

48 Hours in Lake Placid

Last week, Tom and I packed up our snowshoes and headed north to Lake Placid for a couple of days of adventure in partnership with Golden Arrow Resort.  Snow (and lots of it!) was in the forecast, and we were so excited to spend a couple of nights in the winter wonderland.  We’d been to Lake Placid before to grab a quick bite after hiking, but this was our first time staying in town, and it definitely won’t be our last.  We both agreed as we were packing up to head home that we could’ve used an extra day or two to fit everything in! If you’re headed to Lake Placid this winter, here are some of our favorites from this trip.

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What to See and Do

Snowshoeing at Mt Van Hoevenberg  This was the perfect first stop before we checked into our hotel.  It had just started snowing lightly, and we had the trails to ourselves.  Peaceful, and so, so beautiful.  There are a few different snowshoe trails - we chose the yellow trail since it took us right by Josie’s Cabin, an adorable little woodland retreat.  We warmed up at the Cabin over hot chocolate and bowls of chili.  (Also pretty tempting - the s’mores kits - perfect for the fire they had burning outside!)

Toboggan Slide  We passed the Toboggan Slide on the way to our hotel, so we couldn’t not try it.  It’s a 30 ft high icy slide, which sends you out onto the frozen lake on your wooden toboggan.  So, so fun, but a definite reminder that this tailbone of mine is not as young as it used to be ;)  

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Ice Skating (or walking!) on Mirror Lake  One of my favorite parts of staying at the Golden Arrow was its location right on the lake, which meant you could skate right off the snowy beach!  Rent skates at Lake Placid Skate Rentals, or just take a walk around the path that is plowed on the lake.  It was so much fun checking out the lake houses and boat houses from that perspective.  Copper, the resident pup at the Golden Arrow, was so much fun to play with out on the ice: she loved it! 

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Strolls around town  There is no shortage of cute shops and scenic views in this town.  We loved ducking in and out of the shops to get out of the snow (and ducking into bars to grab a drink and take in the view, too!).

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Cloudsplitter Gondola  Fun fact: I live in upstate New York and have never skied.  I know, I know.  I had said this was my year to learn, but since that hasn’t happened yet, we went for the Cloudsplitter Gondola ride at Whiteface Mountain.  A 15 minute ride to the top, and the most gorgeous view.  If that doesn’t make me want to ski, what will?! 

High Falls Gorge  We spent our last morning exploring the waterfalls at High Falls Gorge, which is a gorgeous privately owned park with four waterfalls.  They provide you with Yaktrax for traction on your boots as you explore the waterfalls on the trails, bridges, and platforms.  It was so stunning with the snow and ice, and we can't wait to check it out in the summer as well.  And to top it off, they had a fire with marshmallows and toasting sticks waiting at the end of the trail!

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The view from our room at Golden Arrow  Last but not least, this view.  We’d been socked in with (beautiful!) snow on the first 2 days of our trip, but on our last morning I jumped out of bed to the most beautiful sunrise and clear skies over the frozen lake.  We got our first views of the mountains (you can see Whiteface from the balcony!), and sipped some hot chocolate while we watched the early morning ice skaters below.  

Where to Eat  We got so many great recommendations, but these were the few we had time for this trip!

Smoke Signals  This was recommended by a couple of you for dinner, and it did not disappoint. Yummy barbecue and a cool atmosphere.  Still thinking about those ADK BBQ tacos…and the mac and cheese. 

Breakfast Club  Perfect views of the lake and yummy breakfast skillets.  And pancakes for the table, of course.

Generations  A great spot for a casual meal after a busy day!  Had a delicious burger and loved their focus on sustainable dining.

Where to Stay

Golden Arrow Resort  We so enjoyed our stay here.  Everyone we met was SO friendly, including our pup pal Copper!  The location was perfect (that view!), and the resort itself is very family friendly with access to lots of activities.  I especially loved their green initiatives, including solar panels, and a green roof!    

We’re already thinking about a summer trip for some hiking and canoeing (and to try out all the restaurants we missed this trip!).  Would love to hear any recommendations you have!

Until next time, Lake Placid!  

Thank you to the Golden Arrow for providing our accommodations!