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Focus on the Finger Lakes!


This year the Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium will Celebrate 10 years on 11 lakes in 12 months!

In 2008 founder John Adamski had the vision that the Finger Lakes region needed to have a place that celebrates the natural and cultural history of this unique region. Having visited the Adirondack Museum and The Wild Center, he was inspired to write an article in Life in the Finger Lakes. He noted that

“. . . we have no cultural or natural history museum to focus attention on one of the most beautiful, ecologically diverse and popular regions of New York State.” He found others that agreed: It’s time! Thus began the vision that became The Finger Lakes Museum & Aquarium!

In the ensuing years, while striving to educate and inspire, we have been developing our organization based out of Branchport and centered on Keuka Lake.

This month we celebrate Honeoye Lake.

  • Elevation: 804 feet

  • Surface Area: 1,772 acres

  • Length: 4.5 miles

  • Maximum width: 0.8 miles

  • Maximum depth: 30 feet

  • Honeoye Lake is the 2nd smallest Finger Lake (Canadice being the smallest), and is the shallowest, making it one of the warmest.

  • You can hike or bicycle the 19 miles around Honeoye in a day!

  • Honeoye Lake freezes completely in the winter, creating the perfect setting for ice fishing.

  • In the Seneca language, “Honeoye” means “lying finger,” or “where the finger lies,” referring to a story of a Native American who, while picking berries, had his finger bitten by a rattlesnake. He then cut off his finger with a tomahawk and left it there

Did you know Honeoye Lake hosted a Winter Carnival each year from 1961 to 1971 that reportedly drew 50,000 people? I grew up in the Finger Lakes on the south end of Cayuga Lake. With Mom & Dad and more siblings than we could fit in a station wagon, we did not travel as far as Honeoye Lake back then, but boy, what a lot of fun folks must have had! The Carnival featured dog sled races, wood-chopping and chain-saw competitions, snow-themed balls and dances, photography contests, airplane rides, sky-diving demonstrations, bonfires, trapping and muskrat-skinning competitions, skeet-shooting, the crowning of Miss Winter Finger Lakes and more. You can learn more about it in this 2008 article by Hilary Smith : When winter was queen: The Honeoye Lake Winter Carnival

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3369 Guyanoga Road

 Branchport, NY 14418

communications@fingerlakesmuseum.org

Tel: 315-595-2200

A Cultural and Natural History Museum