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The Group Travel Leader Going on Faith Select Traveler

Cooperstown: Baseball’s first town

Courtesy Cooperstown/Otsego County Tourism

Where is Cooperstown, N.Y.?

The one-stoplight village of 2,100 is in central, upstate New York, 1.5 hours southwest of Albany, two hours southeast of Syracuse, two hours northeast of Binghamton and four hours northwest of New York City.

How do we get there?

Cooperstown is 30 miles south of Interstate 90 and 25 miles north of Interstate 88. The closest major airport, in Albany, is 90 minutes away. It is a two-hour drive to airports in Syracuse and Binghamton.

What types of meetings best suit the Cooperstown area?
Small corporate, association, sports, religious and fraternal organizations benefit from the central location and appreciate the area’s history and ambiance.

Tell me about some sites worth seeing.
• Say Cooperstown, and the mind goes straight to the baseball diamond. A stop at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, open year-round, is a must. It covers the game’s history and players through exhibits, activities and its hall of fame.

• To understand rural life in the mid-1800s, tour the working farm and play period games at the Farmers’ Museum (April-November).

• Another seasonal attraction, the Fenimore Art Museum (April-December) is housed in a mansion that overlooks the lake. It is home to one of the country’s best collections of folk art and American Indian art.

• Forty sweet ciders to sample is just the start at Fly Creek Cider Mill (March-December). Wines, cheeses, salsas, mustards, rubs and other food products are also sold there.

• For a tasting of another type, try Brewery Ommegang, maker of five award-winning types of bottle-aged beers. Tours and tastings are offered each day; beer-and-food-pairing demonstrations can be arranged. The brewery is a stop on the Cooperstown Beverage Trail, which also includes the cider mill, Cooperstown Brewing Co. and Bear Pond Winery. At each stop, tours and tastings, as well as food, are offered.

• See how wealthy land barons lived at Hyde Hall (May-October), a 50-room mansion full of original furnishings, art and tapestries.

• Learn the answers to questions like “Why is baseball’s hall of fame in Cooperstown?” on a walking tour of the village. Several companies offer tours; the Cooperstown Chamber of Commerce has free maps for self-guided tours.

• June through September, visitors can hop a trolley and travel around town all day for a couple of dollars. The Village Trolley System also does charters for groups. There’s no place to better appreciate Otsego Lake than aboard the Glimmerglass Queen. In addition to one-hour narrated tours, the boat is available for charters.