8 Places to Learn Something New

It's a new year and like many people do, it's a time for new goals and resolutions. What would you like to accomplish this year, where do you want to improve? If you're looking for change or something new and refreshing, why not learn something new? Our city is full of businesses and organizations dedicated to the arts and education.

Check out these 8 places to learn something new this year in ROC:

1. Flower City Arts Center

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

Formerly known as Genesee Center for the Arts & Education, the Flower City Arts Center is a great place for adults and kids alike to learn about the arts with hands-on classes. From letterpress, paper making and pottery, to photography, digital arts, book binding, there are a lot of options to improve a passion you already have or start a new one.

2. Hoopla, City Library

If you're a resident in a city neighborhood, you're in luck. Check out Hoopla, this service offered FREE through the Rochester Public Library (to city residents ONLY!) gives library card holders access to ebooks, audio books, movies and more, accessible right from your desktop browser, to your mobile phone through the Hoopla app. Check out our recent post on the service for more information: Hoopla for Snow Days & Lazy Days. We can say from experience we have already really enjoyed taking advantage of all of the audio books available.

And even if you don't have access to Hoopla, your local library is full of resources, books, and classes to take advantage of.

3. Amore by Wegmans

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

A great place to hone cooking skills is from a place that makes great food. Why not take a cooking class from a restaurant? In 2016, Amore Italian Restaurant & Wine Bar, located at the East Ave Wegmans, launched a series called Eat, Drink & Learn (check out our post). Keep an eye out for classes throughout the year including Pasta Making, Mozzarella Making, Gnocchi, Risotto and more. Check out the class schedule.

4. 540WMain Communiversity

540WMain is a grassroots non-profit (501(c)(3) community school and event space. They offer classes and programs focused around diversity & inclusion, historic preservation, sustainability and more. With their main location at 540 W. Main Street, they will be opening a second satellite location at The Yards in February focusing on the arts and wellness. Check out the website for a list of all of their classes and events.

5. Rochester Brainery

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

Don't have time to sign up for a series of classes? Try taking a class (or ten) at Rochester Brainery in NOTA. If you've got a few hours to spare the Brainery offers classes from business, to arts, gardening, cooking, history, photography, jewelry making, and more.

6. George Eastman Museum

If photography is your passion, why not improve and hone your skills at a place dedicated to the life and dreams of George Eastman and educating the community and world on photography, film and much more, the George Eastman Museum? Did you know that they offer photography workshops throughout the year, ranging from one day to five days in length? If you've ever wanted to learn more about the history of photography and difference methods of developing film, check it out.

7. Creative Workshop @ the MAG

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

Located at the Memorial Art Gallery, the Creative Workshop is another great place for adults and children to learn the arts. Ceramics, jewelry making, painting, sketching, weaving, there's even art appreciation classes. See all of the class offerings online.

8. Studio 34 Creative Arts Center & Gallery

Studio 34 is located on Elton Street in NOTA and offers classes at all levels in different areas of glass work, jewelry, photography, clay and more. Private lessons and group lessons are also available.

What places are we missing? Where do you head when you want to learn something new?

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The Hack-A-Thon You Don't Want to Miss

the Rochesteriat

the Rochesteriat

Do you love to learn new things, no matter how random they may be?

Well, we've come across something you may be interested in, on Earth Day the Central Library is holding the Life Hack-A-Thon: A How-To Festival.

If you're like us, you probably just said to yourself... "what is that?" Well, you're in luck, we've got all of the details for you:

1. The Date & Time

Most importantly, you'll need to know WHEN it is, so you don't miss it. This event will be taking place on Saturday, April 22nd, from 11am-2pm at the Central Library (both the Bausch & Lomb Public Library Building and the Rundel Memorial Building).

2. What is it?

This is a "How-To Festival", a 3 hour event (you can go for as long as you'd like, 3 hours is not required), where you can learn a variety of things like how to play the ukulele, be an urban chicken farmer, how to make wine at home, how to fix a flat bike tire, origami, and so much more.

And, if you're up for the challenge, you can learn up to 25 things in 3 hours.

3. Where to Go & When:

The library has provided not only the SCHEDULE, but also a MAP to find all of the workshops, so you can be prepared before you go. A lot of the workshops are happening multiple times so take a look and see which ones you'd be interested in.



Ready to learn?

Details: Website, Workshop Schedule, Map

Sign up here for our WEEKLY email to get the BEST/QUIRKY/FUNNY/COOLEST (etc.) things to do in our city! 

Stefanie is Co-Founder of the Rochesteriat. She hopes to make it to the Hack-A-Thon to learn origami, how to fix her two flat bike tires and a number of other things! Join the conversation on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.  

Best Ways to Keep or Break Your New Year's Resolutions

the ROchesteriat

the ROchesteriat

Let's be honest, when January kicked off, we were all pretty gung-ho about the New Year. "This year will be different. This year I'll eat better and work out more. This is the year."

Yes, we've all been there and we sure do start strong. Sometimes good practices turn into habits...and sometimes they don't. February is almost over and the year presses on...so where are you with your New Year's resolutions - steadfast, barely holding on, or long gone?

All judgement aside from us, here are some of the best ways we found to keep - and break! your New Year's Resolutions in the city.


EAT AT HOME! Cooking at home is a great way to eat healthy - especially since you see everything that goes into your food. Shop LOCAL at the Public Market, Hart's, or Abundance Co-op and enjoy the comfort and quiet of your own home.

Why yes, that bowl is bigger than your face! Don't force yourself to finish it, take half home. And, if it was a delicious meal, you'll get to enjoy it twice... what's not to love? Pictured above is the quinoa beef kabob bowl at Saha Med Grill on University. Quinoa, grilled veggies and beef kabobs. Don't devour the entire thing (and the soup or salad it comes with) and this could help you keep your diet resolutions...


A garbage plate a day will not keep the doctor away. Rochester (and Nick Tahou's) is home to the "Garbage Plate". This classic has grown from more than just burgers or dogs over fries/homefries, mac salad, and beans, to Italian sausage, chicken fingers and more, oh and don't forget the hot sauce. But according to Wikipedia, Health.com has named the Garbage Plate the "fattiest food in the state of New York".

Burgers smothered in cheese, topped with onion strings, mac & cheese, pulled pork, fries, and more, that's what you'll find at Bunga Burger Bar. But, don't despair, their menu has "lighter fair": turkey burgers, black bean burgers, salmon burgers, and portobello mushroom burgers. You will also find 2 salads on the menu, but alas, they are covered in Caesar dressing & cheese, or blue cheese and buffalo wing sauce. These may not be on the New Year's Resolution diet either...

Apparently, all of our break-your-resolution food ideas involved burgers... and Furoshiki's Ramen Burger makes the list with their ramen buns. Though we will say, it is topped with tomatoes, lettuce, and avocado with a side salad. Maybe this won't won't break your diet after all.


We've written about the Downtown Fitness Club before, because of their stellar memberships starting at $5 a month. For what we spend out to eat and on coffee, we can probably spare $5 a month to get fit, right?

Maybe you need the appropriate gear first. Head over to Fleet Feet in the Culver Road Armory and stock up on all the essentials. Maybe a new outfit will inspire you to hit the gym more often.


Amore's latest happy hour deal is sure to delight those who want to eat out and save money. Tuesday thru Thursday, 4-7pm, sit in their wine bar area and get $5 pizzas - that's half price! And enjoy their happy hour drink specials. Heading out on a Monday? Well, that's Flight Night with its own set of deals. Great food and drinks for a steal.

Did you know tickets for a Monday movie showing at The Little Theatre are only $5? Compared to national chains where tickets can cost $10-15 dollars, you can't go wrong. And if you're a fan of strange or offbeat movies, check out their MONDO MOVIE Series on Friday night's, these screenings are also only $5.


If your resolution was to save money, then spending it would be the opposite. What better way to splurge and indulge than on high quality, American made clothing at the new BENRUS in the Culver Road Armory. This military inspired company fits perfectly with the history of the Armory which was built in 1918.


Maybe your goal this year is to learn something new. Check out the offerings at Genesee Center for the Arts & Education if you're looking for something creative to tackle. You'll find paper making, bookbinding, letterpress classes, a community darkroom, classes for all ages, pottery and so much more.

Maybe you don't have days or weeks to commit to something new, try Rochester Brainery. Learn something new in 2 hours for a price tag you can afford. Classes range from topics on technology and crafts, to architecture and languages. Maybe you're on the opposite end of the spectrum and you have something to share with others - why not teach a class? You'll even make a few bucks in the process.

And don't forget about this thing called a LIBRARY, it lets you borrow books, audio books, dvd's and even art with just the swipe of a library card! Check out the Central Library's new media center while you're at it!

So, whatever your goals and dreams may be - stick to it! And remember it's not bad to splurge every once in a while. Happy resolution keeping.... or breaking!

Stefanie is co-Founder and Editor of the Rochesteriat. She isn't really one for writing resolutions so it's safe to safe she hasn't kept... or broken any! Find her with a camera & phone in hand, taking photos for @theRochesteriat on Instagram. Follow along on Twitter.

Genesee Center for the Arts & Education: get creating



The Genesee Center for the Arts & Education cannot be easily explained in a few words, there is so much offered inside you'd think we were describing multiple organizations:

Genesee Center for the Arts and Education Letterpress, paper making, bookbinding, art galleries, community darkroom, classes for all ages, pottery and so much more inside this 110+ year old firehouse - let's take a look at each of the areas.

Community Darkroom:

Have you always dreamed of developing your own film? Not only are there 3 darkrooms...

Darkroom You'll find all tools and classes you need to get started.

Film Spool Film Paper Their site says they "provide instruction in basic 35mm and digital SLR, camera usage, composition, basic and intermediate black and white darkroom techniques, studio lighting, and digital programs such as Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, and InDesign." Read more about what the Community Darkroom offers.

Or maybe you prefer digital photography, here's a peek into one of the classrooms:

Macs for Digital Classes You will even find 2 gallery spaces in this area.

Gallery Space Sunken Gallery GCAE Whether photography is your passion, you're looking to develop film, expand your skills, or learn something new, there is something for everyone here!

Genesee Pottery:

From the outside, you cannot tell how vast this area is.

Pottery Entrance They "offer quarterly classes and workshops on a variety of topics for all age groups and skill levels." Want to learn how to make cups, mugs with handles, bowls and vases? Wheel throwing is for you!

IMG_0334 Or maybe you'd like to make porcelain pendants, earrings, or pins...

Porcelain Pendants & Jewelry And there is always a show going on in their Firehouse Gallery!

Gallery Space Genesee Pottery houses a gas kiln, 4 electric kilns, 25 electric potters wheels, a kick wheel, 3 classrooms, a glaze room, a clay room, and even an area where individuals can rent space! Learn more here.

Printing & Book Arts Center:

A tour is not complete without stopping into the Printing & Book Arts Center!

IMG_0275 Housed here you'll find everything you need to venture into the world of letterpress printing, bookbinding, book arts, paper making, wood engraving and calligraphy!

IMG_0278 Just wandering the room will make you want to create something!

IMG_0281 There are enough classes and workshops available to keep you creating year round. Interested in making a Valentine's Day card for a loved one? Yes, there's even a workshop for that, check it out!

Letterpress plates Art for all ages, classes, workshops, gallery showings, events - what's not to love about the Genesee Center for Arts & Education? Looking for a fun date night? Why not sign up for a Letterpress Fling or Friday Wine-Down? Enjoy a glass of wine or beer and get your creative juices flowing.

Their mission is to educate, encourage and inspire all people to create and enjoy the visual arts. They "believe that a positive art experience can change a person's life." And we agree.

Genesee Center for the Arts & Education: Website: http://www.geneseearts.org/ [mappress mapid="34"]