Those summer (days and) nights: Rochester, NY’s highlights of the season


Yes, it’s true; Rochester, NY, isn’t at all far away from the Canadian border which means that, very upstate as our city is, we can endure some rather unpredictable and harsh weather in the winter months. But, don’t doubt it; in the summer months nothing could be further from the truth. Yes, between May and September the city comes alive – so whatever you’re in town for (even, say, making the most of a Riverside Hotel wedding package), there’s so much to throw yourself into…

Walk the talk – go on a Walking Food Tour

Perhaps the finest way to experience Rochester’s finest food and drink is to attend a walking food tour. For instance, running right through from mid-May to the beginning of September is the ‘East End Experience’, a tour that, yes, takes participants through the city’s East End and enables them to try out five or more taste-tacular different dishes and beverages, while exploring the history of Rochester, both culinary and otherwise, and what it may look, sound and taste like in the future.

Take to the walk – enjoy a Fairport Canal Day

Held in June (so this year’s is over, sadly; but there’s always the future, not least next year’s!), the Fairport Canal Day is a major arts festivals that’s brimming with brilliant, talented people and their works (200 artisans in total, in fact). Offering up vibrant colour and irresistible, arty creations every year, it’s undoubtedly one of New York State’s biggest annual events of its kind.

Revel in live music – pop along to Party in the Park

If live music’s your scene and you’re in town during the June-early August time frame (perhaps staying at the downtown Rochester Riverside Hotel?), then you must pop give one of the Party in the Park events, hosted at the Dr Martin Luther King, Jr. Park, a go. A series of concerts that take place pretty much every Thursday evening during the summer, they feature a fantastically diverse range of music – everything from blues to funk and rock to reggae. Who could ask for more?

Enter foodie heaven – sample the eats at Rochester Food Truck Rodeo

Yes, of all kinds of people who visit our fabulous city, foodies are drawn to Rochester especially because it’s such a haven for such delicious dishes served in such a diverse, high-quality array of restaurants and eateries. To that end, a particular highlight on our food-related calendar this year is the Rochester Food Truck Rodeo, which is taking place in the Public Market on the last Wednesday of every month up until September. Why shouldn’t you miss it? Why because it serves up a terrific cacophony of food, drink and music – now that’s a magic triangle of a day/ night out, right there!

Beer lovers unite – and save elephants via ZooBrew

We’re proud of outstanding Seneca Zoo in Rochester, for sure, but this summer there’s an even better reason to visit the venue than getting the chance to check out some of the most beautiful and curious creatures there, it’s that you can sample beers at the specialist ZooBrew events, while checking out all the place’s wonderful and weird creatures. And, maybe best of all, in doing so you can make a donation to the International Elephant Foundation (IEF) – a portion of your ticket’s price will go to the esteemed preservation organisation.

Hit a home run – attend a Red Wings game

Finally, what better way to see out a day or two in the city for business – no doubt with many hours spent in meeting rooms in Rochester – than let loose by to enjoying a summer’s evening at a baseball game? The Red Wings are Rochester’s local team, naturally – and a source of local, civic pride they are and no mistake!