There's no shortage of things to do during the Great New York State Fair. Lots of crowds, music and food. But if you need some peace or want to take in nature, you can do that here as well. As our Iris St. Meran explains, you don't have to travel far on the grounds to visit a state park or trail.
NEW YORK STATE FAIR -- The crowds of people and long food lines can become overwhelming at the Great New York State Fair. It is easy to escape the hustle and bustle of the fair and find some peace, quiet and even a seat inside the Nature Trail at the State Fair.
"There's not that many people here so instead of being able to push through the people, they come back here they sit and have lunch, like the family that's right next to us, and it's a little bit of a break and a rest," said Betsy Ukeritis, NYS DEC Regional Environmental Educator.
Beyond a rest, you can learn a number of things, including different areas to go camping, and a number of state symbols, including the state flower, which is the wild rose, or the state tree which is the sugar maple. Even some pint-sized visitors learned to appreciate the natural wonders on the fairgrounds.
"Nature is special to us because it helps us breathe," said Oneida resident Austin French.
If a state park is more your style, there's one here too. The smallest State Park in New York is a short distance from the trail. The Park Supervisor says he hopes this visit to the park gives people a greater appreciation for the natural wonders.
"I hope it encourages them to branch out and try another state park. Sitting here and relaxing and talking to some of the staff here, hopefully we can encourage them to look for state parks around their own houses where they can enjoy their time," said New York State Parks Supervisor John Stowell.
Even if you don't live near a park or trail, you can still take in nature.
Ukeritis said, "Nature is anywhere you can get out and enjoy, whether it's a street tree or your backyard or going out to the Adirondacks and the Catskill Forest Preserve. Where ever you can get out, just take a couple minutes each day and just kind of relax."
In addition to the park and trail, the DEC also has an aquarium building with live fish.