Belleayre Mountain has been preserved from industry and declared “forever wild” by New York state in 1885. Although best known for its skiing, Belleayre has become a year-round destination. Belleayre boasts the Sky Ride and Trolley Ride, and the Belleayre Conservatory Summer Concert Series puts on well-known musical and dance performances.
Other adventurous ways one can commune with nature are tubing, skydiving and hang gliding. One can tube on the Esopus’ wild rapids or on the five-mile stretch in Phoenicia through the Catskill Mountains, or one can hang glide from the foot of the Ellenville Mountain, often called the hang gliding capital of the northeast.
Horse Shows In The Sun, or HITS, opened a summer facility in Saugerties to much acclaim. Over seven weekends in the summer, competition draws athletes and spectators of all ages and skill levels.
May through October is the festival season, with one nearly every weekend. The Bluestone Festival celebrates Kingston’s place as the main exporter of bluestone in the nation during the 19th century. Also celebrated are the Mardi Gras Festival, Rondout Waterfront Festival, Strawberry Festival, Hooley on the Hudson Irish Festival, Hudson Valley Rib Festival, Hurley Corn Festival, Wild Blueberry and Huckleberry Festival, Mum Festival, Hudson River Apple Festival, Italian Festival, Garlic Festival, Greek Festival and International Pickle Festival.