In addition to numerous attractions and great places to visit, Central New York is home to some of the most exciting and renowned festivals and annual events. Any month of the year you will be able to find something to do:
- Join students and fans alike on a brisk walk up the hill to the Carrier Dome in January and thaw out at a SU Basketball game as Syracuse begins conference match-ups in the ACC.
- 7th Annual Big Chill Weekend in Baldwinsville complete with a Polar Bear plunge for the not so faint of heart!
- Syracuse is known for record seasonal snowfall totals so, for anyone with cabin fever, you’ll find good food, a treasure hunt, and entertainment at Syracuse Winterfest.
- If you would like to be Irish for a day, wear green, or observe the festivities, the 32nd Annual St. Patrick’s Parade is not to be missed.
- One of the most delightfully fragrant and beautiful rites of spring in Central New York is the annual Lilac Festival in Rochester. Among the activities are a parade, a 10K, and a 5K Family Run.
- If you enjoy trying different foods, here’s a wonderful opportunity to taste the fare of some of Syracuse’s finest chefs and restaurants in Clinton Square at the Taste of Syracuse.
- Ever wanted to take a ride in a hot air balloon, watch one launch, or snap some memorable photographs? The shore of Jamesville Beach County Park is your destination for this beautiful festival.
- Are you a fan of the Wizard of Oz? Nearby Chittenango was home to author L. Frank Baum and is host to the annual Oz-Stravaganza.
- Plan to arrive at the St. Sofia Greek Cultural Festival with a hearty appetite and your dancing shoes!
- Take part in the heritage of the 59th Annual Polish Festival held in Clinton Square with music, dancing, and marvelous food.
- Race fans will enjoy getting up close and personal with Grand-Am races at Watkins Glen.
- Sit back and chill to the tunes of noteworthy jazz musicians at one of the largest festivals in the Northeast. M&T Jazz Festival 31 will be held July 4, 5, and 6 at Jamesville Beach Park. Admission is FREE.
- Northeastern Haudenosaunee artists, dancers, and entertainers gather each year in downtown Syracuse for an ecofriendly event showcasing the values and environmental consciousness of the Haudenosaunee.
- Both jazz and wine enthusiasts will love the Northeast Jazz & Wine Festival!
- If you want to spend a day of adventure in the forest, each weekend in July and early August, Sterling, NY is host to the Sterling Renaissance Festival. Enjoy the merriment of actors, comedians, and musicians, browse artisan booths, take part in games to test your skill, and savor an assortment of delicacies from the Middles Ages.
- High quality works by some of the country’s best artisans are showcased at the Syracuse Arts & Crafts Festival held in Columbus Circle. Artisan demonstrations and a variety of family entertainment is found here.
- World class fireworks light the sky over the Port of Oswego on Lake Ontario for this annual harbor festival.
- Every July, Syracuse is home to a true American musical celebration: New York State Rhythm & Blues Festival. Spend a lazy Sunday afternoon listening to tunes in Clinton Square.
- Music fans flock to the shores of Skaneateles Lake in August for three weeks of the Skaneateles Festival.
- NASCAR fans can watch a race at Watkins Glen.
- For many CNY families late August is synonymous with the Great New York State Fair. 2015 marks the 169th year for an opportunity to experience a time honored tradition and take part in Americana. The fair is where you will find New York’s finest food, artists, shows, animals, concerts, rides, and games. Don’t miss it!
- Syracuse Irish Festival
- Syracuse Festa Italiana
- Beaver Lake Golden Harvest Festival
- Vintage Grand Prix cars are at Watkins Glen in September.
- Lafayette Apple Festival
- The German American Society of Central New York hosts an annual Oktoberfest.
- The 28th annual Gingerbread-Gallery
- The 20th Annual Dickens’ Christmas in Skaneateles begins the Friday after Thanksgiving and runs until Christmas Eve.
- A visit to the Everson Museum in early December will coincide with the annual Festival of Trees event where proceeds benefit the museum.
- Lights on the Lake – Take a scenic drive along Onondaga Lake Park in Liverpool to see the holiday light display that runs from late November until early January. The location is also home to a family themed New Year’s Eve event.
For more information on upcoming events
- The Post-Standard / Syracuse.com
- Syracuse Convention & Visitors Bureau
- Syracuse University Events
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