Happy President’s Day Weekend, EscapeMakers! As we celebrate a three-day weekend and great presidents from the past, we would be remiss not to explore the American history right here in our backyard. The Northeast is rich with historic sites and landmarks, and now, perhaps more than ever, it is important to reflect on these great and progressive events and places that have helped define what it truly means to be American. Whether you only have time for a day trip or are looking to spend a long weekend away, get inspired to escape into history!
Hop on Metro-North Railroad from Grand Central Terminal for a day-trip out to Westchester. Spend the day at the Hudson River Museum‘s current exhibitions open now through May, which feature images of the Civil War, i.e. faces of steely-eyed generals, femme fatale spies, crusading abolitionists, and teenage African American soldiers; images of Abraham Lincoln on the banks of the Hudson; and also images and objects that show the art and culture of the nation and New York at the time of the Civil War. You can also check out a complete itinerary for the American Revolutionary Trail from Visit Westchester!
Once we’re out of winter and into the warmer spring weekends, head up to the Catskills in Sullivan County to explore the Minisink Battle Ground Park (open daily between Mother’s Day and Columbus Day). The park, which is part of the Revolutionary War Heritage Trail, is dedicated to the men who fought and died at the “Battle of Minisink,” the only major skirmish of the Revolutionary War fought in the northern Delaware Valley. The 57 acre park includes picnic areas, extensive hiking trails, restroom facilities, picnic pavilion, and more. Looking to make a weekend getaway out of this exploration? Check out our Catskills Craft Beverage Package, which includes a night at Creekside Bed & Bath, and experiences at Prohibition Distillery, The Roscoe Diner, and Roscoe Beer Company.
Want to pay tribute to one of the most memorable presidents in American history? Visit Dutchess County via Metro-North Railroad and explore the Franklin D. Roosevelt National History Site in Hyde Park. Experience the full FDR story — from the Great Depression to World War II — in inspiring and detailed fashion. Tour the preserved Springwood estate, FDR’s home, as well as the first US Presidential library, Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum.
Venture out to the beautiful north shore of Long Island to Sagamore Hill National Historic site, the center of 26th President Theodore Roosevelt’s political life as well as his family’s home. Known as the “Summer White House” during his presidential years, the 80-acre, 23-room Victorian mansion is open for tours and visitors all year long.
You could also head to Central New York to visit Fort Stanwix, a reconstructed 18th century post known for its critical role in the American Revolution, where you can learn about 18th century life on the western frontier.
And, of course, for the ultimate presidential experience, book a ticket on Amtrak to Washington, D.C. With so many incredible history sites just a hop, skip and a jump from New York City, you can celebrate American history all year long!