AFTERNOON AT THE GARDENS

SONNENBERG GARDENS & MANSION
CANANDAIGUA, NY

It’s funny how you can live somewhere for years and never go to some places that people travel from out of town to visit. Such is the case with Sonnenberg Gardens and Mansion. While doing some wedding prep in New York last week, I decided to visit the estate to see if it would be a good recommendation for wedding guests (which it definitely is).

Sonnenberg, German for “sunny hill”, was originally built as the summer home of Frederick Ferris Thompson and Mary Clark Thompson and is now part of the New York State Parks System. Visitors can tour a large portion of the mansion. The rooms are furnished and decorated with pieces from the time period that the Thompsons lived there. Outside, there are nine formal gardens on the property with different themes influenced by Mrs. Thompson’s travels to Europe and Asia. The gardens are well maintained and an approximate bloom schedule is available for flower lovers. Additionally, the Finger Lakes Wine Center is onsite and features local wines from the Finger Lakes Wine Trails. The tastings are run by volunteers who can assist you in choosing from their rotating selections.
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