Clifton Springs grew from the well-known benefits of the sulphur springs which runs through the village. Back when various therapies were based more in conjecture and spiritual beliefs more than true scientific facts, Clifton Springs drew in thousands of visitors over the years for the healing properties the springs provided.
Today, no visit to the Finger Lakes area is complete without a stop in Clifton Springs. The quaintness experienced here is typified in the Victorian-era architecture and period buildings. Make sure you include a stop in Clifton Springs when traveling around the region. You won't regret it.
June: Annual Sulphur Springs Festival Downtown Clifton Springs
Held the first Friday (evening) and Saturday (morning into evening) of June, activities include: live music; car show; talent competition; entertainment & games for kids; food; chalk art; duck derby; historic fashion show; wine & beer walk; and more! The festival concludes with a giant parade of 1,000+ participants! The 2017 festival will include a “100th Anniversary of AOTA Celebration” Photo by 27K Photography
December: Annual Festival of Lights Downtown Clifton Springs
The charm that is evident during the day comes alive at night as downtown is bathed in festive holiday lights! Festival includes Santa; horse-drawn wagon rides; ice sculpting; live music & entertainment; street vendors; access to an historic chapel with rare Tiffany mosaic; and additional special activities for children. Enjoy complimentary hot drinks to warm your bones, and plenty of family fun to warm your hearts. Photo courtesy of FLVC
You can start, or end, your day with a fantastic meal at Warfield's Restaurant. With a 5-star menu, and an affordable price, Warfield's has something delicious for everyone. Seasonal and monthly menus ensure you'll never get tired of their fine cuisine. Visit the Warfield’s Restaurant Web Site.
Foster Cottage Museum
Next, a visit to the Foster Cottage a few doors down will enlighten you to the complete history of Clifton Springs and its golden past. You'll learn about The Sanitarium and its impact on the area. Plus you'll be able to see plenty of exhibits highlighting many of the items found at the Sanitarium. Old photographs of Clifton Springs at the turn of the century are abundant. A must-see for history buffs.
The building was constructed about 1854 as a social center for Dr. Henry Foster, his wife, and his guests. He did not live in the residence to begin with, as he preferred to have rooms in his Water Cure Facility, now known as the Spa Apartments. Early residents were his brothers, Hubbard and William Foster.
The house is unique in that the siding gives the appearance of stone although it is made of wood. The front section of the house now serves as a museum for the Clifton Springs Historical Society. Much of the exterior has retained its original construction. Parts of the building that had fallen into disrepair have been renewed and strengthened. Located on Main Street, it's a fine example of period construction and must be seen when visiting Clifton Springs.
Want to relax? Take a stroll over to the village park. Just a few steps from downtown Clifton Springs. The kids can work off some energy at the well-maintained playground. You can relax under the shaded pavilion; a replica of the one that was formerly located across the street from the Sanitarium, now the Spa Apartments. You can check out the sulphur springs first hand as it runs right through the park, and comes out of a fountain in the center of the pavilion.
After a long day of site seeing, shopping, and dining, relax at The Springs. Part of the Clifton Springs Hospital, The Springs has everything a 'day-spa' has to offer, with all the proven medicinal advantages as well. Dr. Foster was right about the sulphur springs. And today, you too can take advantage of the cleansing benefits with proven techniques and modern conveniences available today.
Years ago, Dr. Henry Foster believed that the Sulphur waters were a cure for many ills. Today, that idea still exists, but with sound medical principles and scientific facts to support that belief. The Springs at Clifton Springs Hospital offers a mix of holistic medical practices complimented by conventional Western medicine.
The Springs offers Hydrotherapy, Aromatherapy, Chiropractic Care, Classical Chinese Medicine, Energy Therapies, Holistic Nursing, Hypnotherapy, Naturopathy, and Massage Therapy among others.
Open Monday through Friday, from 8am to 5pm (6pm on Tuesday & Thursday) by appointment. They are also open every Saturday. The sulphur baths can usually be accomodated on the same day, but please call ahead. Their number is 315-462-0390. Visit The Springs web site here.
The Chapel Tiffany Mosaic
Louis Comfort Tiffany, the son of Charles Lewis Tiffany who founded Tiffany’s jewelry studios in Manhattan is responsible for the “fravrile“ glass mosaic that hangs in the chapel of the Sanitarium Apartments Building, otherwise known as The Spa Apartments on Main Street of Clifton Springs. Favrile glass is an iridescent glass with rich colors from deep blue to purple and from green to yellow-gold which resembles the colors in a peacock or the wing-covers of some beetles. Leonardo Da Vinci did the original painting of the Last Supper, but the rendition in the Spa Apartments chapel is a copy of the painting done by the American Artist, Frederic Wilson, which is a more gentle, quiet version of Christ and his disciples.
Check out the video “Clifton Springs is...”
Special thanks to Finger Lakes Visitors Connection, Chosen Technologies Solutions & Stars of the video
Occupational Therapy & Clifton Springs, NY
In 1917 the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA, which followed a name change) was founded in Clifton Springs.
George Edward Barton, originally of Massachusetts, was a successful, well traveled architect with a broad range of talent and life experiences.
He came to Clifton Springs due to serious health issues. On March 7, 1914 (his birthday), Mr. Barton opened Consolation House, a school, workshop, and vocational bureau for convalescents. He is credited with creating the exact term “occupational therapy”.
Working alongside George beginning in 1916 was Isabel Gladwin Newton, his secretary. In 1917, they and four pioneers in the profession met at Consolation House and founded what is now the American Occupational Therapy Association. George and Isabel married in 1918.
The American Journal of Occupational Therapy published excellent articles in 1968 specific to George Edward Barton, Isabel Newton Barton, Consolation House and Clifton Springs.
It is noteworthy that every person featured below was named to “The 100 Influential People” list in the link above!
George Edward Barton and Isabel Gladwin Newton (Barton) were 2 of the founders of what is now the American Occupational Therapy Association. George served as its first President. Isabel served as its first Secretary.
Consolation House (also the Barton residence) in Clifton Springs, NY. Drawing of dwelling by Robert Bowdren.
Organization founders at Consolation House in 1917 Top Row: Dr. William Rush Dunton, Jr., Isabel Gladwin Newton, Thomas Bessell Kidner Bottom Row: Susan Cox Johnson, George Edward Barton, Eleanor Clark Slagle
50th Anniversary Celebration in Clifton Springs (l-r) Florence S. Cromwell, AOTA President; Isabel Newton Barton, surviving AOTA Founder; Ruth W. Brunyate, former AOTA President; Col. Ruth A. Robinson, former AOTA President.
Additional “OT dignitaries” known to be in attendance were Dr. Sidney Licht, Carlotta Wells, and Betty Yerxa.