There’s Always Time for Late Summer Fun in Central New York

Raised view of people at a festival visiting tented shops

We like to think the sun never sets on summer. But, between the unofficial bookends of Memorial to Labor Day, summertime seems to fly by.

Although the dog days will soon become school nights, there are still plenty of places to soak in the extended daylight of summer in Central New York.

So, why not add one last dash of outdoor adventure to your vacation in a region filled with thrilling experiences for beach bums, music lovers and explorers alike? Here are some of the best ways to have a great time in Central New York before the days of summer fade.

Summer Fun in the Sun at Sylvan Beach

Take a step back in time at Sylvan Beach Amusement Park, which features carnival classics like bumper cars, carousels and retro rides. You can make a day of it swimming, sunbathing or shuffling along the beaches of Oneida Lake, which is also known for great fishing and boating.

Cruise the Erie Canal in the Mohawk Valley

Enjoy narrated canal tours aboard the Lil’ Diamond III, a 130-passenger vessel docked beside Gems Along the Mohawk at the Herkimer Marina. Daily cruises of this historic waterway run through mid-October.

Old School Shopping at Antique Week

Take a few days in Madison County to explore a wide array of antiques during the annual Madison-Bouckville Antique Week in mid-August. With more than 2,000 dealers spread out over two miles of historic Route 20, it’s the largest outdoor antiques and collectibles show in New York.

History Comes Full Circle in Greater Binghamton

Broome County is the “Carousel Capital of the World,” thanks to six antique carousels located in the “Triple Cities” of Binghamton, Endicott and Johnson City. Installed by benefactors of yesteryear, these wood-carved wonders remain fully operational through Labor Day – and admission to all of them is free!

Chase the Summertime Blues to Chenango County

Nationally recognized by the Blues Foundation of Memphis, Tennessee, the annual Chenango Blues Fest draws thousands to Norwich, New York, each August. The Chenango Blues Association also curates a summer concert series on Thursdays all summer long.

Baseball Meets Biking in Cooperstown

Cycling is one of many Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum detours to take in Otsego County, home to numerous bike-friendly roads, paths and views. Rent a bike in the village or bring your own wheels for a loop of any length or terrain.

Go Underground at Howe Caverns

Take your outdoor adventure inside at Howe Caverns in Schoharie County. A prehistoric underground cavern six million years in the making, Howe Caverns is 156 feet below the surface. Some newer additions to the mysterious limestone formations, stalactites and the stalagmites include the Howe High Adventure park.

Celebrate 175 Years of the Fonda Fair

You can’t end a Central New York summer without a trip to the Fonda Fair that runs late August through Labor Day. This annual tradition is filled with all the food, rides, games, agricultural competition and musical performances you’d expect from a good, old-fashioned county fair.

Have a Drink in Brew Central

Any summer leisure is sure to work up a thirst. Pair up any of these activities with a beer, hard cider, spirit or wine in America’s Craft Brew Destination. Brew Central brings together the stories, traditions and tastes of Central New York that you can enjoy at any one of more than 70 producers and pubs throughout the region.

So, what are you waiting for? Visit Central New York to craft your own adventure and squeeze in one last bit of summer fun.