Fulton County abounds in history, the arts, recreational opportunities, great places to be active, and affordable, housing. Here is just a small sample of what the county has to offer.
RELAX AND HAVE FUN
Lanzi’s on the Lake Restaurant & Marina – A five-generation, family owned restaurant serving homemade Italian cuisine, steak, and seafood, Lanzi’s patrons enjoy waterfront dining with a spectacular view of the Great Sacandaga Lake. Even in colder weather, Lanzi’s is a gathering place, with its warm stone fireplace, providing a relaxing setting to warm up after a day of skiing, ice fishing, or snowmobiling on the lake.
Customers enjoy everything from casual fare to fine dining and Tuesday “theme nights” in the 1798 Union Hall Inn in Johnstown. The post-Revolutionary War tavern is on the Register of Historic Places.
Broadalbin is home to Ozoner 29 Drive-In Theatre. Nestled in a wooded area, two screens are host to an assortment of films that draw locals and vacationers alike for an outdoor cinema experience. Ozoner 29 also hosts concerts and its own rock ‘n’ roll Ozoner Band. October brings the Halloween Scare-a-Thon: a triple feature of horror flicks.
Adirondack Animal Land is an 80-acre, family-owned wildlife park that is home to over 500 animals from across the globe, from the common to the exotic. Visitors can take a safari ride in a 45-acre area where animals roam free, interact with animals in a petting zoo, walk through an aviary, and have some fun in various play areas. When they get hungry, visitors can enjoy a homemade picnic, or have a meal at the Country Café.
On weekends at Caroga Creek Racepark in Ephratah, spectators can watch go-kart races on a 1/8-mile clay track. Under new ownership in 2020, the park offers Slingshot, Excel 600 Modified, and Kart Racing every Saturday afternoon.
The Gloversville Civic Band and Johnstown Civic Band are groups of locals who come together to perform free outdoor concerts during the summer in their respective city, offering a creative outlet and entertainment for residents.
The Perrella Art Gallery & Sculpture Garden at Fulton Montgomery Community College features rotating art exhibits by students as well as local, national, and international artists.
The Paul Nigra Center for Creative Arts in Gloversville hosts art exhibitions, including the New York State Summer Art Show featuring work from artists across the state. The center also provides instruction in visual, performing, and culinary arts.
The Colonial Little Theatre in Johnstown is one of the oldest community theaters in New York State. Residents share their talents with the community in a variety of musical theater shows.
The ShoeLeather Express in Gloversville is a center for modern western square and rounding dancing, hosting dances, workshops, lessons, and parties for dance enthusiasts.
The Fulton Montgomery Quilt Barn Trail is part of a national movement and features 158 locations that display quilt squares crafted from wood and paint, mounted on the outside of local buildings. While driving the trail, there are opportunities to visit historic sites and sample local cuisine.
The Fulton County YMCA offers an Olympic sized swimming pool, tennis courts, a wellness center, childcare, and more. The facility is located in a newly renovated factory and was funded largely through a community-driven capital campaign.
Bike Thru History.
If you’re looking to combine some exercise with a history lesson, the Mohawk Valley Region Path Through History website is a great place to find an itinerary. It details bike routes that lead from one historic place
to another, searchable by county. For example, Fulton County rides include a route from the Caroga Historical Association and Museum to the Paul Bradt Museum in Northville, another from the Fulton County Museum to Johnson Hall, and an out and back ride originating from Peck’s Lake School House and traversing the shorelines of the lake.
Montgomery County rides include a Canajoharie Loop that goes by the Arkell Museum and the Van Alstyne Homestead Society, another from Canajoharie to Fort Plain that passes by several historic sites, and a route from the Schoharie Crossing Historic Site to the Kateri Tekakwitha Shrine. All listings have distance and difficulty information.
Fonda, Johnstown, & Gloversville Rail Trail (FJ & G Rail Trail).
This is an asphalt trail for foot or bicycle, built on the former roadbed of the Fonda, Johnstown & Gloversville Railroad, which once served communities from Schenectady northwest and north to the lower Adirondacks. There are two sections of the trail. The main, eight-mile section runs from Johnstown to Mayfield via Gloversville along parts of the Cayadutta Creek. The other two-mile segment of the trail goes from the Fulton County Visitors Center at the intersection of State Routes 29 and 30 east to S. 2nd Street, with another short segment that heads west from the visitors center. Information about the trail can be found at www.44lakes.com/things-to-do/fj-g-rail-trail/.
Willie Wildlife Marsh. Three years ago, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation completed a $390,000 upgrade to the Willie Wildlife Marsh Interpretive Trail in Peck Hill State Forest in Johnstown. This is a great family-friendly place to get out and explore wildlife and native plant life. The project included replacing three of the boardwalks that allow visitors the opportunity to walk across the marsh to observe wildlife, including great blue herons, painted turtles, frogs, and dragonflies. A 1.5-mile foot trail through the marsh also received a makeover, and the state added a 0.4-mile accessible trail leading to a viewing platform and picnic area. Visitors can download a map of the marsh at www.dec.ny.gov/docs/regions_pdf/mapwilliemarsh.pdf.
The Adirondack Park.
Fifty-nine percent of New York State’s famed Adirondack Park is located in Fulton County, offering visitors 533 square miles to explore. There are numerous places to take part in outdoor activities year-round on its trails and water features. Just one example is the family-friendly Kane Mountain, in the town of Caroga. There are two options for hiking to the summit of this 600-foot mountain, which features a fire tower built in 1925 and restored in 2003.
One is a 2.3-mile loop trail, and the other is an out-and-back 1.6-mile trail. On wetter days, the trail abounds with orange salamanders. At the summit, the old fire observer’s cabin sits at the base of the 60-foot fire tower. From the top of the tower, visitors can see spectacular views of the Canada Lake region, Silver Lake Wilderness, and Peck and Caroga lakes, as well as the Mohawk Valley on clear days.
Cross-country skiers also enjoy the trail during the winter.
This resort offers visitors great recreational opportunities. Royal Mountain operates a motocross track in warmer months. When the mercury drops, it transforms into a downhill ski facility with a ski lift and 13 trails for all ability levels. www.royalmountain.com
is huge in Fulton County. Between Fulton and neighboring Montgomery County, there are over 400 miles of snowmobile trails and numerous
clubs for snowmobile enthusiasts. www.44lakes.com/things-to-do/?cat=
Johnson Hall State Historic Site
in Johnstown was the former 1763 Georgian Style home of Sir William Johnson, the Irish immigrant for which the city was named, and his wife, Molly Brant of the Mohawk Tribe, and their eight children.
Johnson (1715-1774) was influential in helping the British triumph over France for control of North America. Johnson Hall is just one of many early American historical sites in Fulton County. https://parks.ny.gov/historic-sites/10/details.aspx
hosts exhibits and events to showcase the county’s rich history in Native American and colonial life and its roots in agriculture, industry, and leather- making. Highlights include exhibits of local history in sports, military, schools, technology, the FJ&G Railroad, public service, business, and more. Open May through October. www.fultoncountyhistoricalsociety.org
The Elizabeth Cady Stanton Women’s Consortium
and the Elizabeth Cady Stanton Hometown Association highlight the role of this Johnstown native in the Women’s Suffrage movement. The consortium is dedicated to providing a forum for discussion of women and community issues. The organization supports women’s education, history, culture, leadership, and equity through a variety of activities. Centered in the home of Stanton’s birthplace, the association honors Stanton’s life and legacy through community service, educational activities, and by fostering charitable outreach on behalf of women of all ages. www.ecswc.org and www.ecstantonhometown.org
Fulton County is an affordable place to live. “There’s definitely an affordability index that makes it more worth your while,” said RJ Long, managing partner of Coldwell Banker Prime Properties in Upstate New York. “There’s about a 20 percent difference, sometimes, 25 percent difference in the cost of homes,” he said.
The average sales price for a home in the Greater Capital Region is $190,000 to the $210,000s, but just to the west in Fulton County, the average price of a home is under $150,000. New construction is on the rise in all markets, including Fulton County. Houses and apartments from one to three bedrooms rent anywhere from $750 to $1,400 per month.
Two major healthcare systems serve Fulton County. Nathan Littauer Hospital has 74 acute care beds and a skilled nursing facility that houses 84 residents. Over it 126 year history, the hospital has expanded its services to include satellite centers in 11 communities throughout the region, expanded its emergency departments, added a surgery center in Johnstown, opened a sleep disorders center, and built a new MRI building and dialysis center. As a small community hospital, Nathan Littauer focuses heavily on the doctor-patient relationship. www.nlh.org
“Nathan Littauer has a track record of providing safe, high-quality health and wellness services to its community.”
President & CEO Sean M. Fadale.
St. Mary’s Healthcare,
founded in 1903, is a 149-bed hospital with 11 other facilities in Fulton and Montgomery Counties. These include four urgent care centers, six health centers, a family healthy center, two pediatric health centers, and a cancer medicine center. St. Mary’s also offers laboratory service, medical imaging, and a host of rehabilitation services. In addition, St. Mary’s Healthcare operates a 160-bed long-term care facility. www.smha.org