Geneseo is the Livingston County Seat, and home to SUNY Geneseo, whose beautiful campus overlooks the Genesee river valley and parallels Main Street.
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Village Shops & Restaurants
Geneseo’s Main Street is an interesting mix of history and modern essentials.
Lined with an interesting mix of shops and restaurants, it’s the perfect village to park your car for the day and appreciate the small details.
Geneseo History & Architecture
Village of Geneseo Historic District
The Association for the Preservation of Geneseo (APOG) is an excellent resource for learning about Geneseo’s historic district. Check out their interactive map to explore each neighborhood, like Main Street and Center Street, in depth.
The Geneseo Riviera shows seasonal favorite and classic single-feature movies. It originally opened in 1914 as The Rex Theater, changing its name in 1936.
The Wadsworth Homestead
The Genesee Valley was originally settled by brothers James and William Wadsworth.
You can still find evidence of their influence centuries later in building, street, and town names along with traditions like the Genesee Valley Hunt in October, carried out by James’ descendants.
Built in 1804, the homestead has been occupied by the Wadsworth family ever since, with authentic art & artifacts from each generation. It’s the oldest continually owned private estate west of the Hudson River!
Make an appointment for a guided tour led by sixth generation family member William S. Wadsworth.
The gazebo is the spot to watch the sun set just beyond the Genesee Valley.
Walk through the center of campus to Roemer Arboretum where you can see a replica of Henry David Thoreau’s Walden Pond cabin. The project is tribute to the life work of SUNY Geneseo Professor’s Thoreau scholar, Walter Harding.
After a leisurely walk around campus, head up Bank St., School St. or Park St. toward Main St. There you will find beloved shops, restaurants, and taverns.
National Warplane Museum
The museum is “dedicated to the preservation of WWII, Korean War and Vietnam era military aircraft, equipment, and the stories of those men and women who served our country at home and abroad.”
They also offer rides in many of the aircraft onsite throughout the warmer months, and during the airshow in July.
Nations Road is a favorite among area photographers. Its bucolic Genesee Valley view, concentration of great oak trees, & horses in the fields make for an excellent slow drive through the countryside in any season, and especially in Autumn.
It’s also where you’ll find the Genesee Valley Hunt Races in October.
These trees are even featured in the painting “Genesee Oaks” by Asher B. Durand—an American painter of the Hudson River School—which hangs in Rochester’s Memorial Art Gallery. The MAG website states that he was “commissioned to paint this magnificent vista overlooking the Genesee River Valley in Geneseo, New York, by a member of the Wadsworth family, the village founders. At one time, they owned all the land from Geneseo to Rochester.”
Oak trees are so prevalent around Geneseo the APOG and Genesee Valley Conservancy have designed a self-guided scenic oak tree driving tour.
Genesee Valley Conservancy
The GVC manages several preserves throughout Livingston County. Explore Indian Fort Nature Preserve and Island Preserve in Geneseo, and the Railroad Bed Trail in Avon that runs between Nations Road and NY-39.
The Genesee Valley Hunt Races are one of the most anticipated meets of the hunt season. Formal hunting begins with the “Opening Day” parade of hounds from the Wadsworth Homestead down Main Street.
Where are your favorite spots to visit in Geneseo?
Share your thoughts with us in the comments. Your insight and experience is invaluable!