By Alicia Dziak
The last weekend of May has arrived, which can only mean one thing — summer is just around the corner and Ellicottville and the Enchanted Mountains region are bursting with things to do for everyone!
Many have waited many months for festival season to arrive and now it’s here!
June 6-8 brings the annual Dairy and Ag Fest to the village of Springville, where guests can enjoy arts and craft vendors, kiddie rides, animals and animal-themed activities, live music, an array of food and a huge parade Saturday morning. For more information, visit www.wnydairyagfest.com.
Randolph’s 42nd Annual Arts & Crafts Festival will be held rain or shine along the beautiful, historic Main Street on Saturday June 14 from 10 a.m.–5 p.m. This free event boasts beautiful handmade items, local talented artisans, great food, children’s activities, a wide variety of live entertainment and more. For more information, visit www.EnjoyRandolph.com.
Are you ready to be on the move now that it’s heating up?
Cycling enthusiasts get ready to give it your all! June 6-8 brings Cycling Weekend to Holiday Valley, a weekend geared toward those who regularly ride 30 to 50-plus miles at a time on rolling hills. The weekend price includes three guided road rides (with sag wagon), cycling clinics, meals, social activities and a goody bag full of cycling treats. For more information, visit www.holidayvalley.com.
June 28-29 is the annual Raccoon Rally at Allegany State Park, where riders compete in road races, cross-country trail races and more. There are even kids’ races to round out the weekend! For more information or to register, visit www.heartrateup.com.
Ready to get dirty? The third annual Holiday Valley Mudslide Obstacle Trail Run takes place on June 14 and participants can choose from two distances — 3.5 miles or 5.4 miles — that incorporate 11 obstacles. In addition to some old favorites, there will be some new ones, being kept a secret until race day! Kids as young as 7 years old are welcome to run in the 3.5 or 5.4 mile races. In addition, a special Kids’ Mini Mudslide will take place in the afternoon, which is a half-mile run with two obstacles and a mudslide at the end.
Preregister by June 1 at a lower price and secure your t-shirt. Registration continues until June 13 at a higher fee. Registration for the kids’ race is $5 on race day at Yodeler Lodge. For more information, visit www.holidayvalley.com.
If you’re the type who likes to wake up and plan an adventure the very same day, there are plenty of great options that require little or no planning.
High-flying action can be yours at Holiday Valley’s Sky High Aerial Park! Choose between the Mountain Coaster, twisting and turning through the wilderness; the Climbing Forest, a 3-D climbing adventure that takes you to the tops of the trees; or the Aerial Park, where you navigate obstacles, zip lines and bridges. Whichever challenge you choose to accept, you’re sure to have a blast! (Note that the Aerial Park suggests making reservations.)
Sky High is open weekends only through June 20, and opens daily starting June 20. For more information, visit www.holidayvalley.com.
Feeling artsy? There’s no better place to explore than Griffis Sculpture Park, offering unique sculptures interspersed with miles of maintained trails. Meander through the woods and discover amazing artwork and beautiful scenery. For more information, visit www.griffispark.org.
A huge hit with kids and adults alike are the numerous areas boasting giant rock formations to climb and wander around. Olean’s Rock City Park is now open daily for the season and offers a well-maintained loop hiking trail through quartz conglomerate — a truly breathtaking experience. For more information, visit www.rockcitypark.com.
Little Rock City, in Little Valley, is another local favorite for viewing large rock formations. For more information, visit www.dec.ny.gov/lands/77184.html.
Allegany State Park offers two such areas — Thunder Rocks and Bear Caves, easily accessible from the park’s main routes. Guided hikes are regularly available throughout the summer months. For more information, visit the park’s official Facebook page at www.facebook.com/alleganystatepark.
If you’re up for a little road trip, Hidden Valley Animal Adventure in Varysburg, offers guests a 60-minute guided trolley ride through the park, seeing and feeding many unique animals along the way, such as elk, water buffalo, wildebeest, emu, ostrich, zebra and more. After the ride, the petting zoo allows patrons to get up close and personal with many more animals, who eagerly await their attention. The park is open weekends only through June 18, when it opens daily for the summer. For more information, visit hiddenvalleyadventure.com.
There’s just something magical about seeing a movie under the stars. And there’s nothing better than ending a fun-filled June day with a drive-in movie. Locals are lucky to have two great options for such an activity, one in Delevan (www.delevandrivein.net) and one in Portville (www.portvilledrivein.com). Admission is a bargain compared to many traditional theaters and concession options are plenty. Pack up some blankets and lawn chairs, and take in a movie (or two if you can stay up that late)!
If you love car racing, then a trip to Little Valley Speedway will fill the bill. You can look forward to monthly races including Super Late Models, CanAm Tour, E-Mods and Street Stock races all summer long. After all, it’s “Where the Bold and the Best Come to Race.” Details at www.littlevalleyspeedway.com.
Western New Yorkers have waited a long time for this energizing time of year! Get out, take in the sunshine and enjoy the great outdoors!