We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. There are a ton of things to do in the Hudson Valley each month. Even in the face of the coronavirus, there exist dozens upon dozens of ways to experience the best of what the region has to offer. While they might not be traditional per se (virtual art galleries, anyone?), they are engaging, entertaining, and 100-percent #flattenthecurve-approved.
To help scout out the hottest events in the Valley, we reached out to local tourism directors from Albany to Ulster for their top picks for things to do. Check out their selections, then get planning!
Discover Albany President and CEO Jill Delaney shares her top recommendations for the month.
Mon-Fri 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Sat-Sun 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Spanning 3,350 acres in the heart of the Capital Region, Albany Pine Bush Preserve is a welcome retreat during a time of social distancing. It has nearly 20 miles of official marked, multiple-use trails that vary in difficulty and style. Spend an afternoon trekking the open, sandy trails while keeping an eye out for feathered friends along the way. The Preserve offices and Discovery Center are closed until further notice.
Located along the Helderberg Escarpment, one of the richest fossil-bearing formations in the world, Thacher State Park boasts over 25 miles of trails. While the Indian Ladder Trail is closed to the public during the COVID-19 crisis, other trails and scenic lookouts remain open. Visits to this park are best for locals, since the visitor center and restrooms are closed for the time being.
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Be sure to visit our gardens, free and open to the community from dawn until dusk. A few planting tips from our Master Gardeners: (1) use the same tulip type, but high contrast colors (2) vary the size of tulips using a shared color theme and (3) vary heights. #tulips #518tuliptracker #mastergardeners #albanyny #tenbroeckmansion
Dawn to dusk
Need a dose of Hudson Valley history and vitamin D? Stop by Albany’s Ten Broeck Mansion for a stroll around the gardens. The outdoor escape is a hidden gem in the city, especially in springtime when lilacs and wildflowers abound. The grounds are open from dawn to dusk and are free of charge.
Read up on Columbia County Tourism’s highlights for things to do in the Hudson Valley this month.
June 27, 12 p.m.
Copake Auction Inc. hosts an online auction at the end of the month for collectors, decorators, and art enthusiasts. The wares include a mix of 18th and 19th century furniture, along with folk art, period accessories, primitives, and stoneware. View the pieces online in advance via the auction gallery’s website.
June 27, 8 p.m.
Mark your calendar for an unforgettable evening on June 27. That’s when the Ancram Opera House hosts a free, virtual presentation of the most moving local narratives it has amassed over its five years in existence. Reservations in advance are required, so sign up stat to catch the storytelling session.
Take a peek at President & CEO of Dutchess Tourism, Inc. Mary Kay Vrba’s top picks for things to do in Dutchess County this month.
June 1, 10 p.m.
PBS Station WNET
Dutchess County’s Beatrix Farrand Garden at Bellefield may be closed for now, but locals can experience its beauty when the Beatrix Farrand’s American Landscapes documentary airs on PBS Station WNET. The program follows award-winning public garden designer Lynden B. Miller as she explores the life of Beatrix Farrand, America’s first female landscape designer.
June 2, 1-2 p.m.
Millerton’s The Moviehouse keeps its Art Talks series going with a discussion of Leonardo: The Works with gallery consultant curator Tony Carretta and film director Phil Grabsky. Watch the film beforehand on The Moviehouse’s Virtual Cinema, then join the chat for insight into the artist’s creative story.
June 20, 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.
The Hudson River Sloop Clearwater takes its annual Great Hudson River Revival online this year. Get ready for a full afternoon of music and storytelling, with education woven throughout. As for the lineup, scheduled performers included The Chapin Family, Arm of the Sea, and The Mammals, among others.
Look no further for the coolest attractions and activities in Greene County during the month.
Dawn to dusk
For locals in Greene County, Tannersville’s Mountain Top Arboretum is a welcome reprieve. The venue’s 178 acres contain an array of trails, wetlands, and gardens to make social distancing possible. While the arboretum is open from dawn to dusk, the Education Center and restrooms are closed until further notice.
Dawn to dusk
Open from dawn to dusk, the grounds at Thomas Cole National Historic Site treat local visitors to a rolling panorama of the Catskill Mountains, the grassy hillsides, and the garden in bloom. For Hudson Valleyites who don’t live nearby, the self-guided online tour is a great way to experience the destination from the comfort of home.
Check out Orange County Tourism Director Amanda Dana’s selections for the best things to do this month.
Mon-Wed 3:30-5:30 p.m., Thurs-Fri 2-7 p.m., Sat 9 a.m. – 7 p.m., Sun 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Freedom Hill Farm keeps locals supplied with farm favorites like raw milk, kefir, and buttermilk. The farm store remains open at select times during the week, and porchside pickup is available. Order online one day in advance for easy pickup in Otisville.
Open with social distancing regulations, Hoeffner keeps up its family operation with a rotating roster of plants, herbs, and vegetables. Visit the farm’s Facebook page for weekly updates on what’s in stock, then swing by for fresh milk, cheese, and flowers galore.
Is there an apple pie-sized whole in your life right now? Fill the void by ordering one of the signature desserts on the to-go menu at Jones Farm. While the farm store is closed, to-go pickup of bakery goods, café meals, and local groceries is now available. Take a peek at the menu before ordering.
Ready to stock up on plants for your garden? Head to Pierson’s greenhouse for potted and hanging plants to spruce up your space. In addition to beautiful blooms, Pierson’s sells produce, honey, and dairy products for pickup.
Open daily, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
In Orange County, Soons Orchards makes farm-to-table shopping accessible via its farm store, which is open daily. For the immunocompromised, 8 a.m. shopping on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays is available as well. Curbside pickup takes place at the market and at the Orchard Hill Cider Mill Tasting Room, which means it’s easy to score homegrown produce and hard cider in one trip.
Read up on Putnam County Tourism Director Tracey L. Walsh’s picks for things to do this month.
For healthcare workers in the Hudson Valley, Boscobel opens its grounds for free, private tours of the gardens and grounds. Email the Director of Visitor Engagement Ed Glisson at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a tour. The grounds remain closed to the general public for the time being.
Boscobel House and Gardens, Garrison
Saturdays, 8:30-10 a.m.
While Boscobel itself is not open, the estate continues to play host to the Cold Spring Farmers’ Market on Saturday mornings. Swing by now until early November to support local farms and makers during a time when they could use a little extra support. Six feet of distancing is required for all visitors, and only one person is allowed at a vendor table at a time. Face coverings are required, and dogs are not allowed.
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Fresh pear tart with Laurel Mauds ginger pear jam tomorrow Sunday at the Hudson Valley Regional Farmers Market. #lemoncurdtart #freshberrypastrycreamtart #cawfeecakes #butterscotchtoffeeshortbreadcookies #greatvendors #supportsmallbusiness #shoplocal #safeentry #socialdistancespiritweek
Sundays, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Located outside of the Mt. Ebo campus in Brewster, the Putnam County farm market is open with social distancing guidelines in place. Shopping options run the gamut from fruits and vegetables to breads, meat, plants, and even pickles, so there’s something for everyone. All attendees must maintain at least six feet of separation from one another, with masks on at all times.
Take a browse through Director of Economic Development and Tourism Jeremy Schulman’s picks the hottest things to do in Rockland County throughout the month.
Open with certain restrictions, Bear Mountain State Park varies in accessibility depending upon visitors and traffic. All closings are posted on the park’s website, so anyone interested in visiting should check online before making a drive. Currently, Perkins Memorial Drive, the museum, zoo, merry-go-round, gift shop, restaurant, and spa are closed to the public, along with a number of roads. Seven Lakes Drive remains open.
During the pandemic, Garner Arts Center brings art into the heart of Hudson Valley homes with its #GarnerAtHome programming. Head to the website for virtual gallery exhibitions, classes, and streaming performances all month long.
For Rockland residents who crave a walk outside, Nyack Beach State Park is the perfect place to do it. Now open for socially distant visits, the park’s Nyack River Trail is ideal for scenic strolling. It connects to the Haverstraw River Trail along the Hudson River, which means that the views are mighty magnificent along the way.
Throughout Rockland County
Far from your standard cruise around the block, Rockland’s bike trails are scenic connectors throughout the county. Visit the website above for recommendations on where to spin your wheels, and be sure to call ahead if you’re planning to wind through a local or state park to confirm whether or not it’s currently open to the public.
Read up on Ulster County Tourism’s event highlights for the month.
Open to the public since May 10, the Brunel Sculpture Garden is an outdoor resource for the Ulster community. The garden is situated on the former site of artist Emile Brunel’s home and is a hub for local horticulture. Stop for a moment of tranquility and peace during the week.
As part of its phased reopening plan, Mohonk Preserve welcomes visitors in stages to ensure safety and proper social distancing. The new Testimonial Gateway Trailhead is open for public use, as is the East Trapps Connector, the West Trapps, Spring Farm, the Upper Duck Pond Trailheads, and the Visitors Center. The Coxing Trailhead remains closed for the time being.
Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays from June 1-19
Trying to get fit at home? The Hot Spot’s free weekly yoga classes are an absolute must. The courses take place three days during the week and are accessible to individuals of any age and skill level. Watch on Zoom or Facebook Live to participate.
June 5, 5-8 p.m.
Diamond Mills, Saugerties
Diamond Mills keeps up First Friday programming with its seasonal picnic spread in June. Order in advance for a perfect picnic dinner. Choose between mains like Berkshire pulled pork with blueberry barbecue sauce and blackened Atlantic fluke with wild ramp remoulade, then make a beeline for the dessert sampler. Packed with s’mores cupcakes and warm peach cobbler, it’s all the best flavors of summer in a few sweet bites.
June 28 – September 13
While Maverick Concerts’ 105th Chamber Music Festival will not take place this summer, the organization switches format to a 12-part online series dedicated to music. Tune in to watch some of the concert hall’s most revered concerts of days past every Sunday at 5 p.m. on WMHT-FM. For more information, visit the organization’s website.
Discover the hottest happenings according to Westchester County Tourism this month.
Sundays at 7 p.m.
Theater buffs can put their knowledge to the test during The Play Group Theatre’s musical theatre history nights. Sessions are highly engaging and incorporate film clips, music, and tons of tidbits. Register in advance for single or monthly sessions.
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New: Wheel rentals now available. While our studios are currently closed, why not continue your clay practice at home? Set up your very own home ceramic studio without the commitment of purchasing expensive equipment. Wheel rental from us is a monthly rental available to any student or artist recently involved with CAC. Clay Curbside pick up available as well in Port Chester, NY. Learn More: Link in Bio. . . . . #clayartcenter #wheelthrown #wheelthrowing #makesomething #getcenteredwithclay
June 11 – July 9
A five-week course taught by Clay Art Center instructor Logan Wall, this pottery workshop is ideal for beginners who want to learn how to work with clay at home. The courses cover basic hand building techniques like coil building and pinching to help students craft beautiful, useful objects for their spaces.
Jacob Burns Film Center taps into the Hudson Valley’s cinema scene with a virtual screening room filled with top indie flicks. Each movie is available for at least one week, with the potential to be extended for a longer period based on demand. In other words, if you see something you like, you should probably watch it ASAP.