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Overview

The Chautauqua Institution was founded in 1874 as an educational experiment of sorts, to combine holiday escapism with the arts. The current not-for-profit, 750-acre educational center lies along the picturesque Chautauqua Lake. Residencies in the arts of every form attract nearly 7,500 creatives, resulting in more than 140,000 events, talks, performances, lectures, exhibitions, shows and recitals open to the public. The natural beauty of the area has served as inspiration to those immersed in the studies of art, acting, dance, philosophy, instrumental music, operatic and musical theater, writing, and choral training. In addition, the ...

The Chautauqua Institution was founded in 1874 as an educational experiment of sorts, to combine holiday escapism with the arts. The current not-for-profit, 750-acre educational center lies along the picturesque Chautauqua Lake. Residencies in the arts of every form attract nearly 7,500 creatives, resulting in more than 140,000 events, talks, performances, lectures, exhibitions, shows and recitals open to the public. The natural beauty of the area has served as inspiration to those immersed in the studies of art, acting, dance, philosophy, instrumental music, operatic and musical theater, writing, and choral training. In addition, the region offers a recreational release in the form of boating, canoeing, hiking, birding, swimming, biking, tennis and golf. Religious, cultural and political acceptance is considered an integral part of the community. Accommodation for artists and visitors varies from rooming houses to inns to charming cottage and modern condo rentals. The area’s “grand dame” property, the 1881 Athenaeum Hotel, is a full-service hotel that serves a nightly five-course dinner to room clientele and walk-in guests. The use of cars is frowned upon as noise pollution is a concern in the near-constant performance environment during the Chautauqua season, an organized nine-week period that runs from late June to the end of August.

Sascha Zuger
About the Expert

Sascha Zuger is the author of the New York State Moon Handbook, the travel novel Girl Overboard (under the pseudonym Aimee Ferris), and is a freelancer for publications such as National Geographic Traveler, the Los Angeles Times and The Washington Post.

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Sascha Zuger for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Chautauqua is a town and lake resort community in western New York state. It is northwest of Jamestown and famous as the home of the Chautauqua Institution, the birthplace in 1875 of the Chautauqua Movement of educational and cultural centers.
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel
  • Weather: Daylight | Rainfall

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    May through mid-October, end of June through end of August for nine-week Chautauqua Institute season