Each Friday, NNY Living brings you five things to do in Northern New York this weekend. Though the first official day of summer is June 20, this weekend seems to be the kick-off to the summer season in the north country. Check back every Friday for five things to do, sights to see, businesses to visit and more.
1.) Sailing Seaway Clayton presented by Caskinette’s Lofink Ford: Perhaps this weekend’s biggest event is happening along the St. Lawrence River in Clayton. Thursday evening the Fair Jeanne arrived in Clayton, where it will be docked for tours throughout the weekend, along with several other activities such as the Seaway Splash dog jumping competition, a craft and vendor market, live music and demonstrations, books signings and more. For a full events schedule, click here. Dozens of local businesses will be open, as well as the new Frink Pavilion, if you need a place to sit and enjoy the boats passing along the river. To follow the activities going on throughout Sailing Seaway Clayton, follow @theshipwatcher on Twitter.
2.) Strawberry picking: Locally grown strawberries are ripe and ready for picking. Grab a few bags, load the kids in the car, pour on the sunscreen and visit a berry patch near you to make an afternoon of it. Some popular patches around the north country are Behling’s Farms along Route 11 in Adams, Best by Farr in Evans Mills, and Merkley’s U-Pick in Heuvelton. When you get home, clean them up, eat them whole or chop them and serve over just about anything: ice cream, homemade biscuits or just in a bowl with fresh whipped cream.
3.) Zoom! at the Zoo: The New York State Zoo at Thompson Park’s annual Zoom! event is a favorite among local families. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, the Thompson Park Zoo will host big trucks, fast cars, limousines, dump trucks and fire trucks for kids both young and old. The Watertown Fire Department will demonstrate a vehicle extraction and there will be raffles, giveaways and children’s games.
4.) Food, wine and family: There’s so much going on in Clayton this weekend, it is hard to fit into just one day. The New York State Food and Wine Festival, sponsored by Clayton Chamber of Commerce, is from 1 to 8 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, at Cerow Recreation Park Arena, 615 E. Line Road. The festival features products locally made and produced in New York State. Admission is $5; military, $4; and children, $3. For information visit www.nysfoodwinefestival.com. Also on Saturday, it is Family Day at the Antique Boat Museum, 750 Mary St. Visit the museum for free admission, boat rides and activities from noon to 4 p.m. that the whole family will enjoy. Best of all, a free shuttle will be provided between the food and wine festival, Family Day and Sailing Seaway Clayton on Saturday and Sunday, so you can check it all out.
5.) Hit the beach: The forecast for this weekend calls for mid-80s and minimal chance of precipitation and cloudiness. So it’s time to dust off the flip flops and work on that tan. Pack a picnic lunch and a cooler full of drinks, grab a few beach towels and head for your local state park. Admission for the entire day at a state park is normally less than $10 per car, so it is an affordable way to get the entire family outside, enjoying the weather and the water. For information about a state park or beach closest to you, visit www.nysparks.com/parks