Brenda Austin has been here
Fenimore Art Museum, Cooperstown, New York
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A Small, Engaging Art Museum in a Picturesque TownFlag review
I visited The Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown for the first time early in the Fall of 2012 with my mom and two year old daughter. We made the trip at the recommendation of one of the children's librarians at the Cazenovia Public Library who had recently visited to see the Tasha Tudor (children's author/illustrator) exhibit. She sent me home with a pile of Tudor's work, I showed it to my daughter, and off we went. The museum itself is in a picturesque location with views of Otsego Lake. It is small enough that it is not overwhelming to visit with small children. The collection of American art is varied and impressive. My daughter was awed by the beautiful clothing displayed in the Native American art exhibit (also seasonal). I enjoyed learning about the Fenimore family and their role in the history of Cooperstown. I recommend this museum for families with young children not only because of its interesting exhibits, but also because if you only have an hour or two to spend there, the facility is compact enough that you won't leave feeling like you missed out on too much. It's also worth a repeat visit because the exhibits change frequently.
Tips for Families
Before you go, visit the website to find a specific exhibit that truly interests you. If traveling with small children, be aware that not all bathrooms are equipped with changing stations. The one bathroom we visited upstairs was quite tiny and cramped - think narrow vintage stalls - and was not conducive to occupying together with a toddler. The staff might be able to direct you to a more appropriate bathroom. Also check out the Farmers' Museum (same street) and the National Baseball Hall of Fame. If you are looking for a real treat in the Fall, make the short drive to the Fly Creek Cider Mill, which will wow you with more free samples of sauces, salsas, snacks, and treats than you've ever seen in one place! The kids can also watch the cider press and learn how cider is made.
Suggestions for nearby family-friendly accommodations
The Otesaga Resort Hotel provides luxury accommodations and is very close to both The Fenimore and The Farmers' Museum.
Suggestions for nearby family-friendly restaurants
The cafe at Ommegang Brewery is worth checking out if you have older children. There is communal seating, the adults get to sample the local microbrews, and the menu is creative but kid-friendly (Belgian fries, crepes). Even if you're not going for a tour, the exterior of the brewery is a pretty impressive sight. At the time of this review, the women's bathroom in the cafe was not equipped with a changing station.
My Kid's Review
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