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Top 5 Experiences to Warm Up Your Winter

Embrace a more relaxed pace in winter by learning something new or attend an annual event that everyone's talking about! The greater Ithaca area has a strong foundation in education and is ripe with outdoor recreation opportunities, along with some of the best culinary and performing arts experiences in the Finger Lakes region. Here are a few hands-on classes in and around Ithaca that will make for meaningful experiences with friends and family. And as a bonus, details about one of our best annual events of the year!

1. Artisan Bread Baking at Wide Awake Bakery in Trumansburg

Bread shaping Wide Awake Bakery

Ever wondered how bakeries can make their loaves of bread look so delicious and artsy? Well, get ready to learn how they do it and make some artisan bread of your own at one of their many baking classes throughout the winter and spring. Find the full schedule of baking classes and registration details are on their website. The Wide Awake Bakery is a truly LOCAL bakery, using locally-grown wheat and ancient grains.

2. Weekend Cider House Brunch

Cider House Brunch

Every Saturday & Sunday from the beginning of December to the end of February, delight your taste buds with brunch at the Finger Lakes Cider House in Interlaken.  With a menu including breakfast crepes, frittatas, and everything on their standard lunch menu, you're sure to find something to satisfy your weekend cravings!

3. Fly Tying Workshop – open to youth and adults

fly tying

This class series for fly fishing enthusiasts is offered through Cornell Cooperative Extension on Saturday evenings in January and March, Tuition includes nine weeks of instruction, all tools, hooks and tying materials. All students receive complete tying kits (including vises, scissors, and related tools); all tying materials necessary to complete the course and practice tying outside of the class (feathers, dubbing, hooks, and related materials); as well as a comprehensive introductory text on Fly Tying.

4. Sciencenter Science Together

Sciencenter in Ithaca sign

A perfect weekday activity for parents, guardians, and babysitters and their toddlers/preschoolers! Spend the morning discovering engaging hands-on activities at the Sciencenter in Ithaca. Play with flubber, use tools to sift through sand, and so much more. A great time of motor skill development and fun!

5. Annual Chili Cook-Off in Downtown Ithaca

people at a winter cook off event in Ithaca

Every year, over 35 local restaurants face off in the ultimate chili cook-off to find out who offers the best in a number of categories, including Best Meat/Overall Chili, Best Vegetarian/Vegan Chili, and People's Choice Chili. In additions to some spicy, warm-you-up-just-right chili samplings, there is also a farmers market with vendors, local wineries and breweries, and farmers offering their goods. Come warm up on the Ithaca Commons in Downtown Ithaca this February!


Whether you're interested in taking a class, having some fun with your little ones, or enjoying a food competition unlike any other, Ithaca is the place to be this winter if you want to stay warm inside & out!


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Ithaca/Tompkins County Convention & Visitors Bureau
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The official web site of Ithaca, New York and Tompkins County Convention and Visitors Bureau in the Finger Lakes. Complete guide to Ithaca, NY hotels, attractions, dining, shopping and recreation with maps and driving directions.
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