The Festival Fanatics were on the road again Memorial Day weekend. This time, we went to Corning for the annual GlassFest, a celebration of the community’s rich history in glass production.
The festival also acts as a showcase for local vendors and businesses that line the Gaffer District. FOR OUR VIDEO TOUR OF GLASSFEST KEEP READING!
As you walk down East Market St. and West Market St., you’re struck by the storefronts, many of which remain loyal to the history of the area. You may notice sculptures of melted clocks outside an art gallery, or a buffalo head erupting from the wall outside the Rockwell Museum of Western Art.
Further down, you’ll notice Vitrix, a hot glass studio where local glassblowers come to make beautiful glass art.
Keep going and you’ll find one of the oldest operational theaters in the country at The Palace Theatre. It has been in its current location since the Civil War.
We were struck by the beauty of downtown set against the backdrop of the hills of the southern tier. We loved the food and the hospitality of the vendors, from Dan of Bisco’s Italian Salsa to Trish of Sassy Glass Productions, which makes unique hand-blown glass products to display in your home.
We loved the history of the Gaffer District on display everywhere you looked, including a sculpture erected in 1996 to show the entire history of Corning, from the rail road that helped start the town to the glass that now sustains it.
GlassFest was certainly one of the best small festivals we’ve been to this year, and with the charm of downtown, we’ll be keeping an eye on Corning for other festivals throughout the year.