Visiting New York: A Quick Trip to Syracuse


Last October I spent a long weekend in Syracuse, NY as part of my graduate program at Syracuse University.  My dad lives nearby in Pennsylvania, so we also used it as an opportunity to meet up and do some exploring.
On our first day, we did a quick tour of a few local
waterfalls.  The most remarkable was 167-foot
Chittenango Falls at Chittenango Falls State Park.  The trail to the falls was quick and easy,
albeit a bit muddy.  Some of the river
bank is habitat to a few protected species, so you’re really not allowed to
wander around, but the designated path and adorable footbridge still afford
some great views from above and below the waterfall and along the gorge.
At the top of the waterfall, a paved trail lets you explore
further upstream, and my dad and I couldn’t resist building a few cairns like
we always do on our trips together.
After that we drove to 137-foot Pratt’s Falls at Pratt’s
Falls Park.  This park offered a lot more
as far as outdoor recreation is concerned, and the path to the waterfall was a
bit more strenuous.  At least when we
went, the view of the waterfall wasn’t quite worth the trek to get there.  It’s quite far away from the vantage point,
and unless there’s been a lot of rain, the flow of water isn’t very dramatic.
On our last afternoon, after a quick tour of campus, we
decided to take advantage of the warm weather and drove out to Fort Ontario on
a whim. Fort Ontario, in the City of Oswego, is situated on the southeast bank
of Lake Ontario.  Not only did we get to
see a really unique historic site, I got to visit the one of the Great Lakes I
hadn’t seen yet. The Fort was built in the early 1800s and used by the U.S.
Army through World War II.  At one point
it also served as the only refugee camp in the country for Jewish victims of
the Nazi Holocaust.
We did venture into town on the hunt for ice cream, but most places were closed for the season.
One evening, we were fortunate to get tickets to the Russian
Grand Ballet’s performance of Swan Lake at the downtown Crouse Hinds
theater.  Before the show, we ate dinner
at Jim’s Fish Fry, a real local treasure my dad couldn’t resist trying.
The next couple of days I spent on campus fulfilling my
requirements as a student before flying back to Virginia.
Syracuse in the fall is hard to beat, but I returned again
in May for my graduation ceremony. It was a bit warmer and wetter, but still a
wonderful weekend of celebration.  The next
time I’m in that neck of the woods I’ll be enjoying it as a proud alum.



Tags: Chittenango Falls, Fort Ontario, New York, Pratts Falls, Syracuse, Travel, University

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Compulsive snacker. Bleeding heart. Unhealthy obsession with Tom Hanks and cats. Florida State and Syracuse University alum.
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