Rochester Twilight Criterium: 5 Things You Need to Know

the Rochesteriat

The Rochester Twilight Criterium is back for 2019! For the unfamiliar, you may be asking yourself, what is a Criterium?

"Criteriums are best explained as a uniquely American-style bike race. Courses are designed on city-center streets and staged on spectator-friendly course loops typically about one mile in length. The racing provides incredible lap-after-lap excitement highlighting the athletes’ extraordinary bike-handling skills combined with explosive speed!"

Here are 5 things you need to know about the MVP Health Rochester Twilight Criterium happening on Saturday, May 11th:

1. It's Downtown

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

Spectators and racers alike will get to enjoy the streets and buildings of DOWNTOWN! The course is in the heart of the city, crossing the Genesee River twice and wrapping around the Blue Cross Arena, Legacy Tower, the Central Library and more.

2. It's like NASCAR but for Bikes

Often described as NASCAR on 2 wheels, lap after lap racers wind around a 1-mile course that includes 9 turns with speeds pushing 40 mph. The race begins and ends on the Broad Street Bridge.

3. Admission is FREE

Rochester Twilight Criterium |  Facebook Page

Rochester Twilight Criterium | Facebook Page

This is a professional race, with competitors coming from around the globe, and it's FREE! Teams from as far away as Australia and Hong Kong will compete this year. And the best part? You can watch from anywhere along the course, we recommend walking around during the event to see it from different places. Check out the list of recommendations from the Criterium crew for their list of Best Places to Watch.

4. Don’t Miss the Beer Garden & Food Truck Rodeo

Rochester Twilight Criterium |  Facebook Page

Rochester Twilight Criterium | Facebook Page

Head to South Ave between Broad St. and Court St. to enjoy food and beverages from our city's favorite food trucks and beverage vendors (details). This section opens at 2pm for all pre-race activities too.

5. Running Racers

Back again this year is the Rochester Mile. What is it, you ask? The Rochester Mile is a race for runners, both men and women, amateurs and elites. Four separate 1-mile races will happen throughout the night so check out the website and schedule to find out more.

What else did we miss? Loads of people, events for kids and a night full of fun!

Rochester Twilight Criterium:
Twilight Criterium FB Event Page


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The Official Unofficial Insider's Guide to the 2017 Clothesline Festival

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

The M&T Bank Clothesline Festival being held on September 9th & 10th at the Memorial Art Gallery is the last outdoor big-art-bash of the season here in the city.

Without further ado, here is your Official Unofficial (or is it Unofficial Official?) Insider's Guide to the Festival:

Admission is $5

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

Ok so, it's not free, it's $5 to get in ($4 if you're a museum member or free for kids 10 and under with an adult). BUT... did you know that five bucks also gives you full access to not only the festival, but also the museum itself? Yes that's right and for the paying adult it's $15 on a normal day to enjoy the MAG - so we call that a festival BONUS.

And don't forget - the festival is a huge fundraiser for the Gallery helping it to keep all of its incredible programs and exhibitions going year after year.

Painters, Sculptures & all sorts of Makers

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

The grounds of the MAG will be be overtaken by over 375 artists following their dream and pursuing their craft. The festival is open to ceramics, jewelry, metal, drawing, painting, photography, glass, digital art and more. It's time to decorate your house, shop for Christmas, and stock up for birthdays.

Did you know that there is a residency requirement to be in the festival and all exhibitors are New York State residents? It's all LOCAL.

A Library Sale, Music, Dancing, & More

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

Inside the Pavilion, the Library will have stacks upon stacks of books for sale. If you're looking for something full of art to add to your collection check it out. Or pop into the Gallery Store to see what's on sale (the Store also has a large sidewalk sale outside behind the building).

In the Ballroom you'll find local dance groups performing and down in Creative Workshop free hands-on activities and demos for families.

Outside in the Centennial Sculpture Park will be a lineup of bands. Keep an eye on the festival site or snag a festival brochure when you arrive to find out who will be performing.

There will be Food & Stuff

Food trucks, kettle corn, ice cream, beer, wine, coffee and more. We hear a few of the many in attendance will be Macarollin, Cheesed & Confused, The Meatball Truck, Rohrbach's, Pittsford Dairy Ice Cream and Glen Edith Coffee... you'll just have to find out who else will be there by GOING. And don't forget about Brown Hound Downtown located inside the building.

So let's RECAP:

Outside you'll find: lots and lots of art, food, beverages, bands, the Gallery store sidewalk sale and (hopefully) beautiful weather.

Inside you'll find: the museum (don't forget: free admission), the gallery store, library book sale, dance performances, Brown Hound and maybe even a performance on the Italian Baroque Organ on Sunday if you time it right.

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

So, rain or shine, you won't be the only ones in line waiting for the gates to open to get shopping.

Clothesline Fest:
Clothesline Website
Memorial Art Gallery Website
Admission: $5 (includes the Gallery)

Festival Hours:
Saturday: 10am-5pm (special member opening 9:30am)
Sunday: 10am-5pm (special member opening 9:30am)

Take a free shuttle from Gleason Works on University Ave (there is accessible parking here) or the East End Garage (East Main & Scio), the parking garage does charge a fee. Find street parking (keep an eye on all signage) or bike! Just inside the festival entrance on Prince Street you'll find bike racks.


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Stefanie is co-Founder of the Rochesteriat. She LOVES our city's festivals and always has good intentions to buy for others, but often only buys herself things.... #oops. Join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

10 Things To Do Around The Jazz Fest

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

This is downtown. It's in a transition...Welcome. It's where we live, where we do business, and where we spend a good deal of our time. Naturally, we have a great affinity for the neighborhoods in it and the great stuff happening all around.

Without exception, the annual Jazz Fest provides us with an opportunity to showcase some of downtown's best - and some of our favorites! - to the nearly 200,000 visitors coming from all over the country and the world to see one of the most popular and well respected music festivals. We'd even bet that most locals wouldn't know half this while you're in downtown during the next week and a half, here are 10 things you need to check out in and around the Jazz Fest to fully take advantage of a city that has recently awakened.

1. Get a caffeine boost

You want to spend entire days enjoying some of the best jazz and you need a pick-me-up? The East End has you covered. Just about every Jazz Fester knows of Java's because it's right in the heart of everything on Gibbs Street. It's also one of our absolute faves. But so is Spot Coffee on East Ave. And you may just want want to check out recent addition Press Coffee just around the corner on E. Main. And if you're a simple, don't-give-me-that-fancy-stuff type person, then you always now have the new Dunkin' Donuts on East as well. Plenty of options abound.

2. Take a walk through Grove Place

And if you're checking out Press Coffee, take a stroll into the "oldest continually occupied residential neighborhood in Downtown Rochester", that is, the Grove Place neighborhood. This phrase is the neighborhood association's way to distinguish it from Corn Hill, generally considered to be the oldest neighborhood in the city. We love Grove Place because parts of it remind us of Brooklyn and even Greenwich Village in New York - a great little neighborhood with beautiful homes, quirky streets, and their own artistic touches all over.

3. Arena's

Do some shopping in the neighborhood while you're at it. Stop into Arena's to see the latest urban home furnishing fashions and their beautiful and eclectic mix of fresh flowers. Make it a romantic date and purchase some for your loved one - just like the ol' days.

4. See the tranformation

While you're taking a break from all the Jazzy things going on, you may just want to take a stroll over to the living, breathing history museum known as the covering of the Inner Loop. This project is decades in the making, and now the city is finally making it happen. Get pictures while you can and see it for your own eyes because by next year, most of the inner loop in the East End will be covered - and just a faint memory.

5. A festival within a festival

We've said this many times before - get over to Hart's Grocers. Partly because we know the Rochester consumer is an expert grocery critic, partly because the people are so nice, but mostly because it's an experience in and of itself. Hungry and looking for a great bite to eat? Check out the Hart's Kitchen with a special Jazz Festival Menu - all items under $8! What city can you go to and that happen!? Oh, and if you're a Club Pass holder, you get a FREE vintage soda with the purchase of a sandwich. Make sure to coordinate your Jazz Fest schedule on Saturday June 20th as there will be a Hart's Vendor Market with FREE samples and tastings - let's call it a festival within a festival!

6. A festival near a festival

Let's call this one a festival near a festival. The Windstream Party in the Park series officially kicked off on Thursday June 18th to the tune of hundreds of outdoor concert enthusiasts at the MLK Jr. Memorial Park, a few steps away from the Jazz Fest action. The next one is on June 25th. The best part is that to experience all the bands and music, tickets are only $5. Again, a little coordination with your Jazz Fest schedule could net you a ton of great music for the evening - and a fun urban experience in our city.

7. Good eats

There will be amazing food all over the Jazz Festival this year. Vendors and the food trucks will be set up to provide those quick bites to attendees. East End Pizza and Deli is a recent addition on East Ave next to Dunkin' Donuts and boasts bar hours - until 2am-ish - Wednesday-Saturdays (other days until 11pm). But what about if you're looking to take a load off your feet and just enjoy the sights, buzz, and energy of the neighborhood? That's when you'll want to check out Aunt Rosie's, Vive, Tournedos or Golden Port Restaurant. And may we suggest taking a slight walk towards Main Street - head over to the brand new Hilton Garden Inn Downtown where you'll find the restaurant Drifters L.B. This is a casual dining experience with an upscale feel - and tour the lobby of the new hotel while you're there - and see the beginnings of our Main Street transformation with your own eyes.

8. Cool off with dessert

If you're bringing the kids and/or you're looking to cool off during these hot summer days, stop into Yogen Fruz - if you can find it amongst the crowd. Sitting directly across the street from Java's Cafe on Gibbs Street, we challenge you to find the entryway as the Jazz Street Stage will pack Gibbs street to the max for the FREE daily shows. When you do find it - you can rest assured - it will be well worth the effort. You can never go wrong with pistachio flavored froyo.

9. RoCo

Feeling all jazzy and now you're in an artistic mood? Then stop by the Rochester Contemporary Art Center, better known as RoCo to see the current exhibitions, especially the popular 6x6 campaign now in its 8th year. Only $2 admission for non-members, RoCo stays open until 11pm every day of the Jazz Fest to accomodate the crowds. DO NOT MISS: a production brought to us by Brooklyn-based Creative Art Director Haywood Hawkes - "Cubes: A Visual Exploration of Possibility" - FREE outdoor performance by Alexander Green, a Rochester-raised artist, on Sunday June 21st on the grounds of Christ Church next to RoCo.

10. The Little Theatre 

Maybe the crowds and the heat are too much at times for you, or you're just waiting to pass some time before the next show. Take advantage of this gem on East Avenue with air conditioning and peace and quiet - The Little Theatre. Playing a mix of indie and foreign films (with some blockbusters as well), these are going to be unique films you won't get out at Tinseltown or Cinemark. Hungry and thirsty for more? The Little Cafe has drinks, desserts, and even its own selection of live music at various times - and The Little is also partnered again this year with Selena's Mexican Restaurant (during the Jazz Fest) to offer a refreshing oasis at the South-of-the-Border-style Sangriaville.

Even if you're not a fan of Jazz, there is so much for everyone to enjoy around the Festival. DO NOT MISS - Cubes performance on Sunday June 21st! Check out more @theRochesteriat or Facebook.

Friday at the Fringe



(The following is a guest post from Tom Biuso, a Rochesteriat Fringe blog contributor. All photos courtesy Tom Biuso.)

The First Niagara Rochester Fringe Festival has provided an experience to a community that so desperately needed a boost in morale and lift in spirits. After weeks of terrible news and series of unfortunate events, Friday on the Fringe left all in attendance inspired. Inspired to live their lives filled with expression, creativity, imagination and interaction. As I weaved my way through the crowd at Circus Orange to snap some photos, I couldn’t find one face that wasn’t cemented with a smile. Come follow me on my exquisite journey that is Friday at the Fringe!

Starting Off

Photo 1 I started my quest appropriately at Java’s Café. I was compelled to return here and energize with a delicious “All-nighter”. Local band Grey Light set up shop and jammed some dynamite tunes. Each song brought something a little different to the table, but they always seemed to reflect their signature soulful sound. The vibes in Java’s left me feeling excellent and I took off to Manhattan Square Bowl.

Photo 2 Younger Gang was on stage and had the crowd groovin’ with some energetic bluegrass!

Photo 3 Photo 4 The long line of food trucks and vendors provided plenty of delicious options for people to choose from as they meandered around the fringe footprint.

Photo 5 Taking this moment to recognize all of the volunteers, security, EMS and law enforcement for their service at the fringe festival. Having them present enhances the quality of everyone’s experience.

Circus Orange

Photo 6 This gnarly tricycle was parked in plain sight and the anticipation could be felt in the air. This beast of a machine was like a sedated bear in hibernation; right on the verge of awakening with a fierce slumber hunger.

The sun had set and the show took an explosive start! While filled with high energy, the theatrics of the show were that of an eerie science experiment that involved lucid dreaming about circus clowns and fire dancers. It was an absolutely mind bending event.

Photo 9 Photo 10 The tricycle started its engine and made its way through the crowd in a majestic fashion while talented performers promenaded alongside of it.

Photo 11Photo 12Photo 13Photo 14Photo 16 Meanwhile, sparks were flying and flames were blazing. The heat that radiated from the flames was an enjoyable intensity that made you feel alive. However, the improvised noises of the tricycle clown Capitan kept you in the outlandish dream state of mind.

Photo 17 The brigade of crazy characters made their way to the stage and continued to incorporate crazy pyrotechnics into their performance when all of the sudden, the front wheel of the tricycle began to levitate into the air. It caught fire and began to spin and spark! The human hamster inside of the wheel performed crazy acrobatics 60 feet above solid ground while fireworks and explosives filled the sky around him. It was nutty to say the least (see the video here)!

Photo 18 Photo 19 Circus Orange exceeded my expectations and allowed me to get away from the world’s typicality and despair for a while. I am grateful to have witnessed such a special event.

After Party

As I made my way back to One Fringe Place, I encountered some drummers on Gibbs Street that kept the energy alive! I happily bopped my way passed Eastman School of Music and into the Spiegelgarden.

Photo 20

I arrived at the Spiegelgarden only to find a mini tent next to the magnificent Spiegeltent filled with the ladies of Bushwhacked, Abby DeVuyst and Kerry Young. It seemed as though everybody was having a blast with the hilarious improv comedy!

Photo 21 Photo 22

Further into the venue, I stumbled across an interactive-human-cowboy-statue followed by some folks warming up by one of the several flame stations in the garden.

Photo 23 Photo 24

Deeper into the Spiegelgarden I could hear some wonderful reggae music. I followed it and found FuturPointe Dance and Carrie Mateosian: Unbridled. Images of the two performers were projected on an accompanying screen. It was an evolving art piece that incorporated much talent and creative flavor.

Photo 25

I popped my head into the Spiegeltent before the beginning of Cirque du Fringe and manage to a snap a sweet panoramic of the inside featuring Tyler of the 20 penny circus. Having seen the show the night before, I knew these folks were in for a treat.

Photo 26

Photo 27 A crowd gathered outside of the Spiegeltent when cirque du fringe ended because the silent disco was soon to begin!

Photo 28 As soon as people grabbed their headphones, they flipped on they channel of their choosing and boogied on! People danced their tails off and had an all around great time! You could hear them singing the tunes in pure bliss the minute you took your headphones off. The shuffling of dancing feet, singing and laughter was the soundtrack to the silent disco. It was a great way to end a spectacular night!

Photo 29

Tom is a communication student in his senior year at The College of Brockport. An avid concert goer and lover of live music. He is an intern for the Fringe and helps to maintain their social media presence. You can check out more of Tom on twitter (@TomBiuso) and Instagram (@tombiusojr).

Clothesline Fest: 57 years & counting



"In 1957, 101 exhibitors and 2,000 bargain hunters braved the wind and rain of Hurricane Audrey at the Memorial Art Gallery’s first Clothesline Festival" (via Looking Back). Back then, paintings really were hung on clotheslines, and since then, the only change has been more exhibitors and more attendees (and no clotheslines of course)!

Clothesline Fest Last year we attended while it was raining, but it didn't keep anyone away - there were plenty of rain coats, umbrellas, and happy people shopping and enjoying the festivities. Rain or shine - this is a great festival.

The Clothesline Fest takes over the grounds of the Memorial Art Gallery, all 14 acres. Peruse artwork from over 400 artists and vendors while taking in the beautiful art and sculptures that cover the grounds. Memorial Art Gallery Centennial Park is a favorite of ours.

Creation Myth, by Tom Otterness

Enjoy live music and entertainment all day, enjoy food and drink from local establishments...

Java's Truck ...and you can even tour the museum, as admission is included in festival cost!

MAG-Baroque-Organ Don't forget to check out the used book sale or the Gallery Store's sidewalk sale.

Clothesline-fest-book-sale Check out the map below (courtesy of the festival website) for more information on the event and to find out where your favorite artists will be head to the festival site.

MAG Clothesline Map

Clothesline Fest: Website Memorial Art Gallery Website Admission: $5 (includes the Gallery)

Festival Hours: Saturday: 10am-6pm Sunday: 10am-5pm

[mappress mapid="89"]