PODCASTS

Tag: #staycation

Autumn Leaves – a Fall Foliage Tour of PA & NY – 10/06/23

Autumn Leaves – a Fall Foliage Tour of PA & NY – 10/06/23

Many New Yorkers and Pennsylvanians (plus guests to the two states) spend an afternoon, a weekend, or a week — out in nature and enjoying the divine design of autumn’s leaf colors.

Certified Arborist Jerrod Webber and Natural Resources Specialist Ryan Reed gives you a forecast on the best views in our two states this month. They also explain how wet/dry weather, wildfire smoke, and the temperatures of the week you go touring all affect the abundance and the beauty of your leaf watching.

Pennsylvania’s weekly Fall Leaves Forecast

New York State Department of Forestry

Staycation Destinations – Noon Report Special – Labor Day 2023

Staycation Destinations – Noon Report Special – Labor Day 2023

It’s “Staycation Destinations” on Family Life!

This special edition of the Family Life Noon Report offers a radio version of our “vacation slideshow” from Summer 2023.

This half-hour special recaps our Staycation Destination interviews from the past few months. Hear these stories, about the women who launched a cultural movement from an upstate New York home 175 years ago, to the WWII soldier whose love for art led to creation of an outdoor art museum — where children can climb on many of the statues. There is even a new interview with the director of the Little League World Series, where thousands of players in the “Summer Classic” returned to Pennsylvania to see their entries in the museums records.

Each Friday afternoon, our Noon Report took you to a unique location in the Family Life listening area. Our goals were to find a variety of places which connect with a variety of interests, fairly close to home, and fairly affordable — whether for a day trip or a longer journey.

 

Click here {https://familyliferadio.blubrry.net/?s=staycation} to hear extended versions of these conversations, take a “radio tour” of other stops along our 2023 journeys, or scroll back into previous summers as Family Life took you to many, many other unique and intriguing places in New York and Pennsylvania.

(Use the older posts and newer posts links at the bottom of the page so you can scroll through more of these Staycation Destinations features across the years. You also can enter a specific item or location in the search bar.)

Staycation Destinations – a Labor Day Weekend Special

Staycation Destinations – a Labor Day Weekend Special

It’s “Staycation Destinations” on Family Life!

Each Friday afternoon, our Noon Report took you to a unique location in the Family Life listening area. Our goals were to find a variety of places which connect with a variety of interests, fairly close to home, and fairly affordable — whether for a day trip or a longer journey.

 

Click here {https://familyliferadio.blubrry.net/?s=staycation} to hear extended versions of these conversations, take a “radio tour” of other stops along our 2023 journeys, or scroll back into previous summers as Family Life took you to many, many other unique and intriguing places in New York and Pennsylvania.

(Use the older posts and newer posts links at the bottom of the page so you can scroll through more of these Staycation Destinations features across the years. You also can enter a specific item or location in the search bar.)

Staycation – Museum of Play – Rochester – 09/01/23

Staycation – Museum of Play – Rochester – 09/01/23

“Staycation Destinations” on Family Life

The Strong Museum of Play opened a generation ago (in 1982) and unites multiple generations with the delights– and the necessity! — of play. Rochester native Margaret Woodbury Strong (starting in her childhood) became a prolific collector of dolls, toys and many other household items. Her legacy now brings hundreds of thousands of guests to the Museum of Play, where people of all ages can see and interact with games, electronics, and playthings from across the decades.

This summer marked the opening of a major expansion of The Strong, with 90 thousand new square feet, expanding exhibit space and a welcome area, plus a new outdoor interactive play area. Shane Rhinewald gives us details about what is new. He also describes the history and development of the museum, offers suggestions of what do see, and tells about diverse range of guests. He also talks about why play is so important, plus how strongly people hold memories of their games and toys.

[ Greg Gillispie closes out this feature with a preview — and your invitation — for one last half-hour journey of the summer. On Labor Day, Family Life relieves many of our radio road trips from our summer Fridays. We will give you highlights from our 2023 Staycation Destinations, plus add in one brand new stop you haven’t heard yet. Join us for our Labor Day Staycation Special, online and on the air, Monday September 4 at 12 Noon. ]

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Side Trip Suggestion: The “Smallest Church in New York” … and quite possibly the World

Each weekend, we also add a note and a picture from another unique spot in the Family Life Listening area, for you to know about — and perhaps decide to visit.

It doesn’t matter which search engine you use, it won’t take long until the Internet tells you that dozens of various U.S. states claim to host “the smallest church building in the world”. However, one in Oneida, New York, might be more diminutive that a lot of others that advertise itself as such.Plus the World Record Academy does give this one the official status as “the world’s smallest (non-denominational) church.”

In addition to its comparative size Cross Island Chapel has a lot of uniqueness going for it. It sits on a platform in the middle of the lake. Even with only two seats, the chapel is put to use as a holy space fairly frequently. With internal dimensions of 51 inches by 81 inches, there is room for a groom and a bride and a clergyperson. If this ever becomes your “destination wedding” setting, your friends can join you there. They may have to watch and listen from a collection of boats floating outside.

 

Staycation – Presque Isle PA – 08/25/23

Staycation – Presque Isle PA – 08/25/23

 “Staycation Destinations” on Family Life

Presque Isle extends about five miles into Lake Erie, giving northwest Pennsylvanians — and visitors from a wide range of the region — a combination of lake front beaches, walking trails, natural settings and so much more. Visitors can enjoy picnicking, swimming, wildlife watching, and rentals of kayaks and paddleboards and boats.

Environmental Education Specialist Tom Laskos gives us a radio tour of Presque Isle State Park, which sees 4.2 million visitors a year.

The popular summer Pontoon Boat Tours continue until the week of Labor Day (Fridays and weekends, through September 10, 2023). Laskos also highlights upcoming autumn events, including a butterfly catch/tag/release event, and a cast-iron cooking challenge between three Pennsylvania state parks. (Cooks AND diners can sign up now.)

Presque Isle State Park is just west of Erie in Mill Creek Township, Pennsylvania. Admission for the day-use park and the pontoon tours are free. First-come, first-served sign-ups for those who are in line begin 15 minutes before each of the three rides through the lagoon.

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This weekend’s Side Trip Suggestion:

A visit to a garden representative of Bible times doesn’t necessarily take a flight to the Middle East’s Holy Lands. You can walk through one — with a trip to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The Biblical Botanical Garden displays more than 100 tropical and temperate plants from Biblical times. The garden at the Rodef Shalom Temple displays the horticulture, agriculture and archeology of the ancient Bible lands. Cedars and olive trees are there, as are barley, figs, pomegranates, and dates. You can see a waterfall, a desert, and a natural representation of the River Jordan flowing from Lake Galilee to the Dead Sea.

Staycation – Griffis Sculpture Park – 08/18/23

Staycation – Griffis Sculpture Park – 08/18/23

It’s “Staycation Destinations” on Family Life

A World War II soldier carried art supplies with him onto battlefields. When he could, he painted to find balance amid the violence around him. After his return home in western New York, Larry Griffis Jr. felt a tug between his budding career running a family business, and fulfilling his inner calling to be an artist. In this Family Life News Feature, you will hear how the choice he made led to an outdoor sculpture museum near East Otto, New York.

The Griffis Sculpture Park offers a unique collection of large steel sculptures, by Griffis and other nationally- and internationally-renown artists. As the founder’s granddaughter Nila Griffis Lampman tells us, this is an incredibly opportune day trip for anyone, but especially for families with young children. Unlike many art museums where young children might be bored (“don’t run…”, “don’t touch…”) this sculpture park encourages young guests to climb on giant animal sculptures and more. It’s all outdoors, with room to walk, play and picnic. Hiking trails connect the 250+ pieces throughout the 450-acre park.

Lampman tells the fascinating story of her grandfather’s life journey, artistic discoveries, and his philosophy on making the results of creative endeavors accessible to children.

Griffis Sculpture Park is in Cattaraugus County, about halfway between Buffalo and Salamanca on Route 219. (The park’s annual Summer Festival is Sunday afternoon, August 20, 2023. Night Lights happen selected weekends in September and October)

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“Staycation Destinations” is our weekly summer series, broadcast each Friday at noon on the radio and online, then posted to our News Podcasts page. Each offers a radio tour of a unique site in Pennsylvania or New York, close to home, relatively inexpensive, and good for a potential day trip or longer visit.

Each weekend, we also give you a “Sidetrip Suggestion” another place in our two states which stands out in a unique, quirky, or enlivening way.

Eckley Miners’ Village at Weatherly, Pennsylvania, offers a free walking tour (dawn to dusk) where you can stroll into the 19th Century at what was said to the largest concentration of anthracite coal in the world. Historic buildings show what a company town of the era looked like. A state commission oversees the attraction, and a museum and guided tours are scheduled. This is about 25 miles south of Wilkes-Barre, not far from the I-80 / I-81 interchange.

Staycation at Watkins Glen – Racing Research Center – 08/14/23

Staycation at Watkins Glen – Racing Research Center – 08/14/23

Tens of thousands of stock car racing fans decend on Watkins Glen in New York’s Twin Tiers each August. That happens this weekend (August 18-20, 2023).

Whether you are going to be among that throng, or if you live in or plan to visit the area other times of the year, the International Motor Racing Research Center can be a tourist site for you. Director Mark Steigerwald tells about the Center’s history and purpose. Visitors can see a classic race car, model cars, racing art and photography collections, and enjoy a video tribute to racing at “The Glen”.

The Center’s website is racingarchives.org/

 

Staycation Destinations – Buffalo Pierce Arrow Museum – 08/11/23

Staycation Destinations – Buffalo Pierce Arrow Museum – 08/11/23

Family Life’s “Staycation Destinations”

The Buffalo Transportation Pierce-Arrow Museum owns one million pieces of memorabilia, from small automotive mementos to classic cars, carriages, motorcycles and bicycles.

Co-founder Jim Sandoro talks not only about the current exhibits at the museum, but also how a prosperous city became home to the manufacturers of — and consumers for — the top of the line Pierce-Arrow vehicles built in Buffalo. In this Family Life news feature, you also will hear how Sandoro’s love of Pierce-Arrows took him from childhood to become an expert collector of transportation memorabilia. (There is also an overlap between Sandoro, the company that makes Jello gelatin, and Robbie and Mike Wolfe of the American Pickers TV show.)

 

The museum in downtown Buffalo, New York, is open Thursdays through Sundays.

 

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“Staycation Destinations” is our weekly summer series, broadcast each Friday at noon on the radio and online, then posted to our News Podcasts page. Each episode offers a radio tour of a unique site in New York or Pennsylvania, close to home, relatively inexpensive, and good for a potential day trip or longer visit.

Each weekend, we also give you a “Sidetrip Suggestion” another place in our two states which stands out in a unique, quirky, or enlivening way.

Just 43 miles northeast of Buffalo, it’s a transportation museum which includes exhibits on a different “scale”. The Orleans County village of Medina is where you will find the Medina Railroad Museum. It hosts one of the largest model train layouts in the nation. The expansive display features miniatures showing the many railroad companies which fostered travel and transportation for the businesses and the people of the region.

Staycation – Buhl Park – America’s Only Free Golf Course – 08/04/23

Staycation – Buhl Park – America’s Only Free Golf Course – 08/04/23

Family Life’s “Staycation Destinations”

A western Pennsylvania golf course has been open for 110 years, but in all that time, it hasn’t brought in a dime in green fees. The founder of Buhl Park in the Sharon/Hermitage area thought that the sport of golf taught so many life lessons, he wanted a place where the entire community could learn, play, and become better citizens. This is the only free nine-hole golf course in the nation.

The park’s executive director Tom Roskos gives us a tour through the genesis of Frank Buhl’s dream, how many golfers arrive to shoot a round, and the other recreational and nature opportunities at Buhl Park.

 

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“Staycation Destinations” is our weekly summer series, broadcast each Friday at noon on the radio and online, then posted to our News Podcasts page. Each offers a radio tour of a unique site in Pennsylvania or New York, close to home, relatively inexpensive, and good for a potential day trip or longer visit.

Each weekend, we also give you a “Sidetrip Suggestion” another place in our two states which stands out in a unique, quirky, or enlivening way.

“The largest living sign” in the world is in New York State’s Southern Tier. That is what Robert Ripley (of “Believe It or Not!” fame) called the arrangement of 260 Scotch Pine trees on a hillside behind the Canisteo-Greenwood School at Canisteo, NY. The name of the community first was spelled out in this way by students and their teachers as a school project in 1933.

 

 

Staycation – Ska-Nonh “Great Law of Peace” Center – Liverpool NY – 07/28/23

Staycation – Ska-Nonh “Great Law of Peace” Center – Liverpool NY – 07/28/23

Family Life’s “Staycation Destinations” for Summer 2023

“Ska-Nonh” translates into English, roughly, as “peace and wellness” or “I am glad it is well with you.”

That Native American vocabulary — and philosophy — gave the name to the Ska-nonh Great Law of Peace Center along the shore of Onandaga Lake in central New York. The Skanonh Center is a living museum which celebrates the culture, history and contributions of multiple nations which found unity they share as the Haudenosaunee People.

The Center is a project of the Onandaga Historical Association. Executive Director Lisa Moore offers us an overview of the Haudenosaunee stories, and she provides details of what visitors can experience.

  • “The things we have a tendency to overlook take on a new level of importance. In Haudenosaunee tradition, being grateful and giving thanks is a regular practice in both everyday life and at special occasions. The Thanksgiving Address, or “The Words that Come Before All Else,” is delivered in Native Haudenosaunee languages at both the beginning and the end of social gatherings, celebrations, and council meetings; and it is recited each morning at the beginning of the school day.”

 

The Ska-nonh Center is open Wednesdays through Saturdays, and is located on the Onondaga Lake Parkway at Liverpool, northwest of Syracuse. Details and schedules are here.

 

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This week’s Side Trip Suggestion: 

The “Shoe House” in Yorklyn, PA.

“There was an old woman, who lived in….”

You probably already heard about that one, but elsewhere, an old businessman lived and worked in a retail-store shoe. “Colonel” Mahlon Haines became a millionaire selling shoes, but in the late 1940s at age 73, he decided to spend some of his money to build a 48-foot* shoe.  He sold work boots for $1.98 there. The Shoe House became famous, as Haines offered the shoe as a free honeymoon suite (with a butler and maid) to any couple who got married in town.  You can see the outside, but tours are no longer available — unless you arrange to be a paying customer. The Shoe House (in south central Pennsylvania) has become an expensive vacation rental home.

* (that’s a measurement, not a count)

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