"The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in
its net of wonder forever."—Jacques Cousteau

July 7, 2017

Aurora, NY

Allan H. Treman State Marine Park

The little village of Aurora is nestled on the banks of Cayuga Lake in upstate New York, it looks like it could have been ripped from the pages of a storybook. About a decade ago, Pleasant Rowland, the creator of American Girl Dolls, led a massive, village-wide restoration project to restore the historic grand estates and cozy cottages into charming accommodations, shops, and restaurants. 

The village was first settled by veterans of the Revolutionary War. They were given tracks of land as payment for their service. During the 19th century, Aurora developed as a minor center for manufacturing. A stopping point for canal traffic after the Cayuga–Seneca Canal opened, the village was incorporated in 1837. It became a port, shipping produce from farmers in the region up Cayuga Lake, then by the Erie Canal to other major markets. Aurora today is a wonderful place to spend an afternoon or weekend...shopping, strolling the historic streets or just relaxing on one of the many porches soaking in the amazing views of Cayuga Lake.

Bet the Farm Winery and Gourmet Market one of the smallest award-winning wineries in the Finger Lakes. 
Fargo Bar & Grill - this building is among the trio built by E.B. and Henry Morgan and was originally used as the office for Morgan enterprises.
Phelps House - was built by Seth Phelps, a captain in the Revolutionary War, first judge of Cayuga County and later a state senator. It is now a little boutique called Jane Morgan's Little House.
The Aurora Inn - originally named Aurora House, was built in 1833 by Colonel E. B. Morgan. It was once a stagecoach stop for the Wells Fargo Express. Henry Wells, of Wells Fargo stagecoach fame and the founder of American Express, established Wells College in Aurora in 1868. 
Cayuga Lake National Bank building was built about 1840, and used as a home until 1864 when it was sold to a consortium of local businessmen who were organizing the “First National Bank of Aurora,” now the Cayuga Lake National Bank. In 1998 the Bank was designated a Village Landmark. 
E.B. Morgan House - Formerly the home of Colonel Edwin Barber Morgan, co-founder of the New York Times and American Express, is now a beautiful Inn with seven stylish guest rooms, exquisite living spaces and gracious porches that overlook the lake and lawns. 
The Mackenzie-Childs studio, shop, showroom and farm overlooks Cayuga Lake just north of Aurora. The company makes handcrafted ceramics, enamelware, glassware, furniture, lighting, rugs and more. All their pieces are hand painted on site. Mackenzie-Childs has been creating one of a kind collectibles on their farm since 1983. 
Mackinzie-Child showroom
The grounds of the Mackinzie-Child studios and farm
The chicken coop on the Mackenzie-Child farm
The Farmhouse at Mackenzie-Child sets high on a bluff overlooking Cayuga Lake, it was built in the late 1800s and served as the homestead for a prosperous dairy farm. The Farmhouse was first used as the MacKenzie-Childs reception area and office. The 15 room Farmhouse was completely renovated between 2001 and 2003 and now showcases art and antiques playfully combined with MacKenzie-Childs products. Free tours our offered, but we arrived too late in the day to take advantage of that. 
The view of the lake from the house
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  1. Been following along for awhile now-- Thanks for sharing..
    Good Anchorage on the North side of Cockenoe Island off of Westport, CT. if you ever get this way..
    I Boat out of Compo Marina-- It would be a Hoot to meet you two..

    1. It's always nice to hear from blog followers. We've been in New England and Maine a few summers. I'll have to add that info to our list of places to visit the next time we're up that way. Hopefully we can meet up on the water on day. Thanks for the info.