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Trumansburg (New York)

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Trumansburg is a village the Finger Lakes region of central New York, between Cayuga and Seneca Lakes. It offers a distinctive mix of an old rural village and modern funkiness

Get in[edit]

Most people arrive by car. NY Route 96 is Main St, passing through Trumansburg on its way from Ithaca to Waterloo and Geneva. T'burg is about 10 minutes from Ithaca.

TCAT (Tompkins County Area Transit) [1] bus route 21 runs down Main St to Ithaca and the Cornell campus with good service in the morning and evening, sparse other times. During the summer, there is seasonal service between Ithaca and Taughannock Falls. Ithaca taxis will take calls from Trumansburg. Right Limousine [2] provides stretch limos for events, wine tours, and airport transfers.

It is possible to bicycle among Ithaca, Trumansburg, and Taughannock Falls, although the ride from the falls up to the village has some steep hills. TCAT buses all have bike racks, so one can ride one way (such as downhill from T'burg to Ithaca) and take the bus the other.

Get around[edit]

The village is only a mile across, and the downtown is only a few blocks long, so most places are walkable. There are two small municipal parking lots, but street parking is always available except during special events.

See[edit][add listing]

  • The Camp House, Camp St (Two blocks off Main St via Elm or South St). The biggest most beautiful house in Trumansburg, built by local notable Hermon Camp, an officer in the War of 1812, local postmaster, and founder of the local bank. Not open to the public, since people still live there, but it's occasionally open for charity house tours or events. Now surrounded by trees, but when it was built, everything'd been cut down and farmed and you could see all the way to the lake.  edit
  • Taughannock Falls State Park - Taughannock Park Road (On Rt.89, just south of the village, via well marked road from Rt.96). Lake swimming, boating (rentals are available), hiking, picnicking, and camping. Take a pleasant, flat walk from the Route 89 entrance to the base of the falls, the tallest (215 feet) east of the Mississippi. There is a more vigorous hike around the edge of the falls basin. For instant gratification you can drive up the road connecting with Route 96 and pull off to visit an overlook to the Falls. There are often summer concerts here on Thursday evenings. Note that entrance to one State park gets you admission to all State parks for the day.

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Grassroots Festival, Fairgrounds (east end of the village on Main St), [3]. Late July. Every summer 10,000 people descend on the village for a weekend of non-stop music by bands from the well known to the obscure for the annual Grassroots festival. The scene is mellow, families with young children mingling with tie-dyed 20-somethings. Many people camp in tents or RVs. Also lots of food, the local police chief says good things about the barbeque stand.  edit
  • Trumansburg Fair, Fairgrounds. Late August. Five days of rides, games, food and races. The Fair also features art and animal judging, a fireman's parade, and Children's Day.  edit
  • The Paleontological Research Institution on Rte 96 between Ithaca and Trumansburg, 607-273-6623 was started in 1932 by a Cornell geologist who had a falling out with the university and has been an academically respectable independent organization ever since. The new (2003) Museum of the Earth showcases the PRI's extensive fossil collection and has frequent special exhibitions.
  • Trumansburg Farmers Market, cor. Main and Hector Sts (park in the village lot off Hector St), [4]. Weds, 4-7PM. From June through October T'burg has its own small but busy farmers market, with locally raised fruits and vegetables, meat and eggs, baked goods, takeout food, crafts, and sometimes ice cream and local wine. On nice days there's often a small acoustic band. free.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

  • Gemm Shop, 13 W Main St, 378-5678. Used clothing consignment shop that benefits local charities. Some great stuff, some not so great stuff, depending on what's in stock when you drop in.  edit
  • One Green Horse, 9 E Main St, 387-7200. A quirky used bookstore with books ranging from the obscure academic tomes to 50s pulp paperbacks to old Nancy Drew. Hours vary depending on the owners' schedule. It's next door to Gimme Coffee so get something to read while you sip.  edit
  • The Collection, 9 W Main St, 387-6579. Your basic rural antique shop. The locals think it's all overpriced. Closed in 2012 and the building now houses Sundrees.  edit
  • Sundrees, 9 West Main St., 607-387-8811, [5]. Nice selection of gifts, kitchen and home items, and just plain fun stuff. Cool triangular shaped building.  edit
  • Funky Finds Thrift Company, 51 East Main Street, 607-387-5313. A mostly second hand store. Women's and men's clothes, boots, shoes, and accessories, furniture, records, jewelry, artwork, books, housewares, and much more. You never know what you'll find.  edit

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Hazelnut Kitchen, E Main St, [6]. Unpretentious upscale food in a remodelled diner. Owned by professionally trained chefs, the food is consistently imaginative and good, and they have an excellent array of wines by the glass.  edit
  • Dorothy's Music Room (formerly the Pourhouse) on W Main Street is a bar and restaurant popular with local families of all ages. They have a good selection of beers, local wine by the glass, and better food than you'd expect. Acoustic music most nights.
  • New York Pizzeria on Main St next door to the Rongo (below), owned by a family from southern Italy, makes the best pizza in town. The TV is always tuned to RAI (half soccer, half the Pope), and there's Foxon Park Cream Soda [7] in the cooler. No beer, though.
  • Little Venice pizzeria on E Main St has adequate pizza and a full liquor license, in the storefront where Bob Moog made his famous musical synthesizers in the 1970s.
  • Taughannock Farms Inn, Rt 89 adjacent to Taughannock Falls park 607-387-7711, [8]. Traditional American cuisine, in classically upscale setting with a tremendous lake view. Entrees $25-$35. Also offers B&B rooms in season.
  • Falls Restaurant and Tavern, E Main st, adjacent to fairgrounds, 387-9761. Half a notch up from diner food, cheerful and reliable. Everyone goes there for breakfast.  edit
  • Not My Dad's, E Main St, corner of Cemetery Rd. Seasonal. The local ice cream stand offers Ithaca's Purity Ice Cream in stupendously large portions. (The small is enough for any normal person.) Also has hotdogs and chili in case you forgot to have dinner first at the Falls across the street.  edit
  • Lifes So Sweet Chocolates, 27 W Main Street (a few doors north of the Rongovian Embassy), (607) 387-4477, [9]. Mon-Sat 10 am - 6 pm. Family-owned company, making handmade chocolates and other candies. The selection varies seasonally but is always extensive. The staff is knowledgeable, helpful, and very patient. Nice gift-wrapping for hostess and take-home presents. The pecan turtles are to die for.  edit


Drink[edit][add listing]

  • Gimme Coffee[10] is the northernmost outpost of Ithaca's local coffee chain. They have every known variety of coffee beverage and an array of local baked treats. It has wifi but Trumansburg is so retro that people are known to drink coffee while talking to people sitting right next to them. Look for high schoolers playing trash talk chess on rainy afternoons.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Trumansburg no longer has any hotels or motels but instead has many B&Bs, all of which tend toward neo-Victorian (or in a few cases actual Victorian) flowery comfort.

In the village, walking distance from the restaurants and bars, are:

  • The Inn at Gothic Eves, 607-387-6033, [11], 112 E Main St, near the schools.
  • McLallen House, 607-387-3892, [12],30 McLallen Street, across from the Baptist church.
  • Juniper Hill, 607-387-3044, [13], 16 Elm St, T'burg's second most large and beautiful house.
  • Morning Glory, 607-387-5305, [14], 89 Cayuga St, quiet neighborhood about four blocks from downtown.

Nearby, within short driving distance are:

  • Mom's Place, 607-387-5597, [15], 5040 Perry City Rd between T'burg and Ithaca.
  • Copper Beacons, 607-592-5547, [16],3883 County Rd 143, in the country northwest of T'burg .
  • Halsey House, 607-387-5428, [17], Rte 96 about 1/2 mi southeast of the village.
  • Westwind, 607 387-3377, [18], 1662 Taughannock Blvd (rte 89) near the park.
  • Kingtown Beach Lakeside Cottage and Yurt Rental, 607 387-5688, [19], Kingtown Beach Rd, off rte 89 3 1/2 miles north of the park, on Cayuga Lake. 400 feet of Cayuga Lakeside on 5 acres of property, located 11 miles North of Ithaca, NY. Great for Family Reunions. Close to shopping, grocery stores and restaurants in the quaint town of Trumansburg, NY.


Contact[edit]

  • Village Hall, 56 E Main St (large white house between South St. and Elm St.), (607)387-6501 (), [20]. 8-12, 1-4 weekdays. The Village Hall has a good supply of flyers about local attractions. The Clerk is friendly and well informed and can answer most questions about the village and the local area.  edit
  • Chamber of Commerce, [21]. The Chamber of Commerce has a web site listing most local businesses, and has a small events calendar.  edit

Get out[edit]

  • The Finger Lakes National Forest[22] runs along the ridge between Cayuga and Seneca lakes. From Trumansburg, proceed out NY 227/Hector St, turn right on Searsburg Rd across from the village water tower and drive up to the top of the ridge. Hiking in summer and X-C skiing in winter with views across both lakes, also facilities for horseback riding and camping.



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