15 Best Things to Do in Bainbridge, NY
Bainbridge is a small town located in New York’s Chenango County.
The development of the town first started in the late 1780s.
Pioneers from Vermont developed the land along the Susquehanna River, the longest river on the eastern coast of the United States.
Originally called “Town of Jericho,” it was renamed Bainbridge in honor of William Bainbridge, an American Navy commodore who served several presidents during the American Revolution.
Much of the town’s architecture and land still have traces of its rich past from the 19th century, as it remains relatively untouched by heavy commercialization.
Offering a well-preserved glimpse of early US settlement and scenic natural wonders, here are the best things to do in Bainbridge, New York:
Visit the Town Hall Theatre
A great representation of Bainbridge’s rich history is the Town Hall Theatre, located at the heart of the town’s Main Street intersection.
This vintage theater dates back to 1910 and has been fully restored to provide safety and comfort to its visitors while retaining its vintage look.
Managed by the Jericho Arts Council, a voluntary local arts organization, the Town Hall Theatre hosts various art and musical events throughout the year.
Most notably, it hosts the Town Hall Opry Nights, a program that features musicians specializing in bluegrass music.
Be sure to pay a visit to the Town Hall Theatre, whether for scenic photographs or participation in their year-round events.
Take a Walk around Bainbridge Village Green
Bainbridge Village Green is the town’s centerpiece landmark, located at the corner of the East and South Main Streets.
It’s a quaint place where you can glimpse the town’s history through its several war monuments, from World War I to the Korean War.
It also has a soldier monument and a distinct water fountain, which dates back to 1900.
A gazebo is also located at the heart of the square, where many locals host events and pop-up markets.
Surrounding Bainbridge Village Green are several white churches, some of which were the first to be erected in Bainbridge.
During the winter, the square becomes even more picturesque as it is fully covered in snow.
The serenity that Bainbridge Village Green offers is truly an experience on its own.
Enjoy Bainbridge’s Outdoors at General Clinton Park
General Clinton Park is a vast recreational space along New York State Route 7.
Spanning 50 acres, the park is equipped with a volleyball court, Little League baseball fields, jogging trails, kitchen spaces, campsites, and more.
You can also access the Susquehanna River through the park and enjoy boating and fishing activities.
However, the most unique activity visitors can do here is Geocaching, a fun treasure hunt activity where players hide treasure and post its coordinates online for people to find.
At General Clinton Park, you can easily spend an entire day enjoying the outdoors!
Relax at a Man-Made Beach in Oquaga Creek State Park
Bainbridge has no natural saltwater beaches since it’s landlocked, but Oquaga Creek State Park will give you a similar experience through Arctic Lake—a man-made lake with a large sandy beach area.
The lake contains various fish introduced by the locals; rainbow trout, black bass, and bullheads are all thriving in the lake for anglers to catch.
During the winter, the lake transforms into an awesome place for sledding and ice skating.
Besides its beautiful beach, Oquaga Creek State Park also has 10 miles worth of hiking trails, a haven for skiing and snowshoeing during the winter.
The park also has modern cottages and rustic cabins if you want to spend a night or two in the area.
The cottages act similar to hotel rooms, while the cabins will give you a true camping experience as it has no electricity and water.
Oquaga Creek State Park can be accessed along New York County Route 20 south of Bainbridge Village.
Buy Souvenirs at Iroquois Antiques and Collectibles
Like many towns in New York, Bainbridge was formerly occupied by Native Americans in the 19th century.
Iroquois Antiques and Collectibles got its name after the Iroquois, an indigenous Native American tribe who were the first to settle in Bainbridge’s lands, even before the group of pioneers from Vermont.
If you are interested in antique home decor, jewelry, and ornaments, you will easily spend an hour or two shopping inside.
Besides Iroquois antiques, the shop also collects other kinds of antiques from around the US.
Iroquois Antiques and Collectibles is located along North Main Street.
Experience 1950s Dining at Bob’s Diner
Founded in 1935 by Bob Armstrong, Bob’s Diner is a landmark in Bainbridge because of its importance to the locals’ food history.
Throughout the decades, it has been a go-to place to spend quality time while enjoying a good meal.
Now, the restaurant is also known for its retro interior worthy of an Instagram post.
It transports customers back in time, mimicking the classic 1950s American dining experience.
Still, the diner isn’t just a picturesque place, as it is well-known to have delicious burgers, shakes, and breakfast items sold at an affordable price.
Bob’s Diner is located along North Main Street.
Play Bowling at Galaxy Bowl
Galaxy Bowl is a bowling center on North Main Street.
It hosts league tournaments for its locals and accepts open-bowl plays for visitors.
The bowling alley’s equipment and facilities are modern and updated, able to accommodate large groups of players.
It also has banquet facilities for events and other gatherings.
You won’t need to go out to grab a bite as well, as Galaxy Bowl has an excellent selection of food and beverages served by its in-house restaurant, Lisa’s Kitchen.
Highly regarded for its friendly and fun atmosphere, this bowling alley is a great place for you to spend quality time with friends and family.
Shop Fresh Produce at Frog Pond Farms
Located just a mile west of Bainbridge New York State Route 7 is Frog Pond Farms, a farmers’ market offering a variety of locally grown produce.
It offers a variety of fruits, vegetables, and potted herbs.
Poultry meat such as chicken and turkey are also available in the farmers’ market.
If you’re unsure what to buy, the local farmers and producers will happily guide you in your shopping.
The produce is affordable, helping you load up on food for a fraction of what it would normally cost in metropolitan areas.
This will come in handy if you’re staying in town for a while.
Be sure to stop by and check the wide selection of food at Frog Pond Farms!
Swim or Play Basketball at William S. Payne Memorial Park
William S. Payne Memorial Park offers several unique amenities.
Here, you can play basketball on the full-sized court or go swimming in the spacious pool, complete with dive boards.
The park is also right next to the Susquehanna River, offering a splendid view and breeze while you play sports.
Playgrounds are also present for smaller children, and pavilions can be rented out for family gatherings.
You can visit William S. Payne Memorial Park along Walnut Avenue, which connects to the South Main Street of Bainbridge.
Conduct Bird Observation at Marshall “Bud” Andrews Wildlife Park
Marshall “Bud” Andrews Wildlife Park is Bainbridge’s wildlife sanctuary for various birds and insects.
Originally just 28 acres, it has since been expanded to 45 acres to accommodate more wild birds by constructing a concrete dam that helps maintain a watered habitat for the animals.
Since opening in 1980, the park has become a natural habitat for many birds, such as herons, bald eagles, small waterfowl, and wood ducks.
If you’re into bird observation and photography, Marshall “Bud” Andrews Wildlife Park is a must-visit.
Be sure to pack your binoculars or high-powered camera.
This wildlife park is located along County Road 39.
Camp at Tall Pines Campground and River Adventures
Real camping enthusiasts will appreciate the scenic land of Tall Pines Campground and River Adventures.
The campsite gets its name because it is a haven for picturesque mornings and afternoons, as the land is enveloped by large pine trees and other kinds of vegetation.
More importantly, it has access to the beautiful Unadilla River, which converges with the Susquehanna River.
You can either bring your own tent or a recreational vehicle (RV).
RVs for rent are also available onsite.
Campsites have varying rates depending on where it is located (riverfront or non-riverfront).
Besides its serene landscape, Tall Pines Campground and River Adventures also has a wide range of river activities for you to enjoy.
They also have their own swimming pool for those who want to cool down during the summer.
This private campsite is situated on Tall Pines Lane.
Shop for Christmas Trees at Sipple’s Farm
Bainbridge is known for its Christmas trees, particularly firs, blue spruces, and pines.
So, it's no surprise that it has several farmlands specializing in Christmas tree farming, with Sipple’s Farm being one of the most recognizable.
Sipple’s Farm has a Christmas gift shop along with fresh produce such as chicken and duck eggs harvested straight from their farm.
As the Christmas season approaches, the family that runs the farm lets you hike and look around their land full of lush trees.
If you’re buying, they can even let you experience cutting down your own Christmas tree.
Sipple’s Farm is located on County Road 39.
Play Golf at Sundown Golf and Country Club
Given how rich in greenery Bainbridge is, it’s no surprise that the town has a beautiful golf club for locals and visitors to enjoy.
Reconstructed with a new clubhouse, Sundown Golf and Country Club is equipped to meet the basic needs of avid golfers while offering picturesque scenery unique to Bainbridge.
The nine-hole golf course is tucked in the rolling hills of Bainbridge.
Sundown Golf and Country Club is located along Hay Path Lane.
Visit Bainbridge Free Library
Bainbridge Free Library is located within the Bainbridge Town Hall.
It's a quiet place to get immersed in a wide selection of books.
Besides its annual book sale, the library also holds several events throughout the year, most of which are targeted at children.
Besides its quaint ambiance, its exterior is also picturesque.
Pay a quick visit to Bainbridge Free Library and chance upon a great book!
Buy a Sweet Maple Treat at Baker’s Maple
Baker’s Maple is a Bainbridge-grown family business specializing in maple products since 1982.
The shop, located on Freiot Avenue, is known for its award-winning pure maple products.
Besides maple, the shop also provides delicious pancake mixes and honey products.
Tailored to be given as a gift or souvenir, Baker’s Maple can package their products in gift boxes and baskets.
They even provide a mail delivery service if you run out!
During springtime in March, the store invites locals and visitors to learn about extracting maple from trees and boiling the sap for syrup.
So, if you’re interested in maple production, going during spring is highly recommended!
While Bainbridge might be a small town, it’s packed with historical nuggets and other fun activities that make it an interesting visit if you’re traveling to New York.
From its outdoors and historical places to its interesting shops, Bainbridge will surely give you a memorable experience.
To maximize your visit, try this list of the best things to do in Bainbridge, New York!