Northeast Region

Regional Spotlight: Northeast: Rochester, NY

Fun facts:

  • Rochester is the third most populous city in New York and is known as both “Flour City” and the “Flower City.” In the early-to-mid 1800s, the town had a successful mill industry and a profitable seed trade.
  • Rochester is one of the snowiest cities in the country, receiving a median average of 89.3 inches of snow a year.
  • The NBA’s Sacramento Kings originally played in Rochester as the Rochester Royals. As a Royal, the franchise won its only league championship to date by defeating the N.Y. Knicks in the 1951 finals.

Unique Things To Do:

  • Keep an eye out for a bunch of colorful horse statues on public display all over town. In a 2001 effort to raise money for local charities, artists painted over 100 life-sized bronco sculptures, which were sponsored by companies all across city.
  • Feeling like checking out some toys? The National Toy Hall of Fame has been headquartered at the Strong National Museum of Play in downtown Rochester since 2002. So far, 59 games, dolls, and other toys have been inducted—including G.I. Joe, checkers, and the cardboard box.
  • If you’re feeling like knightly and wanting to prove your strength. Head over to E-Z Industrial Park, where a fake sword protrudes from the side of a boulder. Good luck!
  • Looking to get scared? Durand-Eastman Park is known for the spooky legend. These ruins of an old dining hall in the park were once the home of a prominent woman whose daughter vanished under mysterious circumstances. Every once in awhile, someone will see the grieving mother’s ghost, usually with her two faithful dogs at her side. To locals she’s known as “the lady in white”.
  • Care for something a little more cheerful? Check out the Lilac Festival. This annual event hosts up to 500,000 people  each year, eagerly looking to view the 200+ types of blossoms, trees, and shrubs. Nature rejoice!

What To Eat:

  • Rochester’s signature dish is the “the garbage plate”.  There are a variety of different ways to create the garbage plate, but the most popular one consists of hash browns, macaroni, hamburger patties (or sometimes, sliced hot dogs), ground beef, melted cheese, Italian bread, and hot sauce all strewn together into a haphazard pile. Make sure to wear your stretchy pants?
  • Other local dishes include the favorite white hot. German-American residents invented these pork-based hot dogs during the 1920s as an economical alternative to the more expensive red ones. But they’re still going strong today!
  • Gluten-free, vegan or vegetarian? Head over to Owl House for fresh made dishes made just to your liking.
  • Craving meat instead? Dinosaur Barbeque is your best bet. Who wouldn’t want to eat meat like the dinosaurs did way back in the day?