NPR logo Glens Falls, N.Y.: 'Small-Town Feel, Big-Town Style'

Glens Falls, N.Y.: 'Small-Town Feel, Big-Town Style'

This summer, NPR's Destination Art series went off the beaten path to visit small to midsized North American cities that have cultivated lively arts scenes. We asked you, our NPR audience, to tell us about your favorite art towns. Several residents of Glens Falls, N.Y., wrote in to recommend their hometown.

What's it like in Glens Falls?

"This may be a small mill town with a population of only 14,500, but this little town has a world class art museum (The Hyde Collection), a professional symphony (Glens Falls Symphony), a museum dedicated to the art of children from around the world (World Awareness Children's Museum), an impressive collection of photographs by Seneca Ray Stoddard (Chapman Historical Society [Museum]) and a professional theater company committed to new and contemporary works (Adirondack Theatre Festival). In addition, the town boasts a collection of studios and galleries in the converted Shirt Factory building, a community theater, the gallery and programs of the Lower Adirondack Regional Arts Council, the Folklife Center in the Crandall [Public] Library and more." — Mark Fleischer, freelance director and producing artistic director of the Adirondack Theatre Festival, Glens Falls, N.Y.

"Glens Falls is a lush valley surrounded by rolling mountains, with the high mountain peaks of the Adirondacks just to the north. Adorned by beautiful lakes such as Lake George, Lake Luzerne, Fourth Lake, Lake Champlain and divided by the majestic Hudson River, with the Schroon River nearby. There is an unending source of inspiration." — Donnalynn Milford, owner, SensibiliTeas, Glens Falls, N.Y.

"Small-town feel with BIG-town style." — Cory Seelye Dixon, social coordinator for The Glen at Hiland Meadows, Glens Falls, N.Y.

"For a smallish city, Glens Falls packs a cultural punch with music, visual art, drama and theater for all tastes and interests. Don't even get me started on all the different styles of cuisine in the town. ... Glens Falls is a walkable city. Most of the artistic destinations are within the central downtown. This makes it easy for artists to network with one another and for visitors to easily experience the culture of Glens Falls. ... Plus, much of the art available is free. You can't beat that!" — Erin Coon, operations manager, Charles R. Wood Theater, Glens Falls, N.Y.

"There is a nod to the past in almost every structure, as the locals are investing in turn-of-the-century buildings (or older) to restore them and bring them back to life." — Greg Verheyn, teacher, Glens Falls, N.Y.

A perfect day in Glens Falls?

"Arrive and have breakfast at Rock Hill Bakehouse. ... Then stroll over to The Hyde Collection, where you can see rotating exhibits (currently one on Tiffany lamps, and, next summer, one on the paintings by Georgia O'Keeffe of Lake George). The museum's main collection is in the former home of the daughters of the paper mill's owner. It contains a stunning collection of works by such artists as Rembrandt, Renoir, Degas, Whistler, Eakins and more, which the daughters collected during their grand tour of Europe.

"Lunch at Davidson Brothers brewery and restaurant. ... Owner Rick Davidson brews up an award-winning collection of ales of a variety of styles (you can have a six-glass sampler if you can't decide). Visit the Chapman Historical Society to see vintage photographs of the Adirondacks by photographer Seneca Ray Stoddard. Dinner at Bistro Tallulah (but make reservations — this local favorite is always packed).

"Catch a show by Adirondack Theatre Festival at the Wood Theater (a converted Woolworth's building that is now a contemporary 300-seat venue). ... Have a nightcap at Fenimore's, the bar in the Queensbury Hotel, just steps from the theatre and a great place to stay while in Glens Falls." — Mark Fleischer, freelance director and producing artistic director of the Adirondack Theatre Festival, Glens Falls, N.Y.