Crystal Sarakas and Gannett Entertainment Editor Chris Kocher take a look at some of the arts and cultural events coming up this weekend. 

Every summer, 60,000-90,000 people from all over the country come to a sprawling forest in Oswego County for a unique medieval-style experience every summer. The Sterling Renaissance Festival, set in the 16th century town of Warwick, England, gives visitors a chance to experience life as it was then.

WRVO's Payne Horning visited the renowned festival and sent this audio post card.

The Sterling Renaissance Festival runs through August 13.


ROCHESTER (WXXI) - Twenty-six year old Thomas Gaynor has won first prize in the St. Albans International Organ Festival Competition. Originally from Wellington, New Zealand, Gaynor is a doctoral student of David Higgs at the Eastman School of Music, and is the Assistant Director of Music at Christ Church in Pittsford. 

GrassRoots Festival Draws Thousands Near Ithaca

Jul 21, 2017
Alex Crichton, WXXI

Ithaca (WXXI) - The 27th annual GrassRoots Festival of Music and Dance in Trumansburg is underway. Over 80 bands will perform over the four-day festival, which runs through Sunday in Tompkins County. 

Tom Magnarelli, WRVO

SYRACUSE (WRVO) - New York State led the country in a decorative arts movement in the early 20th century and an exhibition at the Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute in Utica showcases those products and objects. The country lacked a modern art identity in the mid-1920s, but the revolutionary time period changed everything.  

WSKG Radio and the BBC World Service will broadcast seven lunch time  programs of Proms concerts. This summers's highlights include Handel's Water Music, Bernstein's On the Waterfront, a centenary tribute to Ella Fitzgerald and Dizzy Gillespie, and more.

Each hour-long episode will be hosted by a BBC Radio 3 classical music presenter, and feature conversations with special guests on the themes, composers and performers, along with the context in which the music was written and performed. 

ROCHESTER (WXXI) - The St. Albans International Organ Festival was founded in 1963 by British organist and composer Peter Hurford. Every two years, the historic city about 20 miles north of London hosts concerts, lectures, an art exhibit, a fringe festival, and a multi-round competition that elicits entries from young organists all over the world. 

Musical Celebration For Erie Canal's Bicentennial

Jul 4, 2017

(WAMC) - New York’s Erie Canal is celebrating its 200th birthday. To mark the occasion, the Albany Symphony Orchestra is holding performances from the canal’s historic beginning in Albany to Lockport in Niagara County. 

Tom Magnarelli, WRVO

SYRACUSE (WRVO) - A new exhibition at the Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute in Utica looks at how New York state led America into a new artistic and decorative era in the early 20th century. Many of the pieces on display  were manufactured in upstate New York. 


BUFFALO (WBFO) - After weeks of preparation and days of local media buildup, Erendira Wallenda finally took her flight over Niagara Falls Thursday morning.

If berries had a popularity contest, chances are the strawberry would be the winner. And there’s no better place to celebrate its popularity than at the 37th annual Strawberry Festival in Owego. 

Tom Magnarelli, WRVO

SYRACUSE (WRVO) - Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) is voicing her objection to President Donald Trump’s proposal to eliminate funding of the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities. The cuts would have a direct effect on organizations in central New York. 

New York Met Unveils 2017-18 Opera Season

Feb 16, 2017
Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera

WSKG Public Media will again present the New York Metropolitan Opera’s 87th consecutive Saturday Matinee Radio Broadcast season.  These live broadcasts commonly begin in early afternoon on WSKG Radio.

Sarah Gager / WSKG News


Memories come back to us through emotional experiences.


Brandon Stanton lost his finance job in Chicago during the Great Recession. He moved to New York City, where he started a photography project. Brandon would approach random people on the streets and take their picture. Somewhere along the way, he started collecting little quotes from his subjects as he talked to them about their lives. 

Hernan Piñera / Flickr

Board members at the Cider Mill Playhouse in Endicott meet Tuesday night to figure out where to move their theater, now that their landlord says he won’t extend the lease.

alex ranaldi / Flickr

Did someone say "toga contest?" Maybe.

Sarah Gager / WSKG News


Sometimes a thing’s value is in its story rather than the thing itself. That might be the case for a remarkable painting now at Binghamton University. 

serguei_2k / Flickr


It looks like this weekend will be a nice one, weather wise. Here with some suggestions on what to do with your weekend is Chris Kocher. He’s the entertainment editor for the Press & Sun-Bulletin, Star-Gazette and Ithaca Journal. Each week he joins his wife, WSKG’s Crystal Sarakas, with a list of arts events in the region.

Copyright 2016 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

While combing through various Civil War files at the National Archives, a volunteer recently discovered a letter written by poet and essayist Walt Whitman on behalf of a Union soldier dying in a hospital far from home.

The National Archives is the repository of the nation's most important documents, including some they didn't even know they had, like said letter.

Washington, Jan. 21, 1865(6)

My Dear Wife, / jeffdjevdet / Flickr

What are you doing this weekend? Not sure? Well, here are some ideas from Chris Kocher - the entertainment editor for the Press & Sun-Bulletin, Star-Gazette and Ithaca Journal. He talks to his wife, WSKG’s Crystal Sarakas.

VickieVictoria / Flickr

Crystal Sarakas and Chris Kocher of the regional Gannett papers run down some of your options for fun this weekend.  Here's a sampler:

1. Corning Museum of Glass' Glass Wonderland opens Thursday. A wide variety of holiday-themed glass creation, including a 14-ft Christmas tree decorated with glass ornaments. 

2. Indy-rockers Guster at the State Theatre in Ithaca on Friday night. 

Photographer Sheryl Sinkow | Out Of Bounds

Oct 4, 2015

Sheryl Sinkow has been a photographer since the age of 16, and co-founded her own professional photography business in 1993. In 1995, after a routine yearly medical check-up, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She underwent a bilateral mastectomy as well as reconstructive surgery. In the late summer of 2012, she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. We'll talk about Sinkow's personal journey on this third segment of our "Health Challenges" monthly series.

jmmcdgll / Flickr

The Binghamton Philharmonic and its musicians’ union have a new contract. Two sides announced an agreement Tuesday.

Kevin Dooley / Flickr

Something for eyes, ears and comic book lovers. WSKG's Crystal Sarakas and Entertainment Editor for the Gannett Papers Chris Kocher have some suggestions for how to get up and get out this weekend.

Author Rebecca Barry | Out Of Bounds

Sep 20, 2015

Rebecca Barry is the author of the best-selling "Later, At the Bar: A Novel in Stories," which was a New York Times Notable Book. Her most recent is the very funny and touching RECIPES FOR A BEAUTIFUL LIFE: A Memoir in Stories. Barry's non-fiction has appeared in many magazines, including The NYT Book Review, The Washington Post Magazine, Seventeen and O, The Oprah Magazine. Her fiction has appeared in Ploughshares, Tin House and The Mid-Atlantic Review. She is also a blogger, writing coach and co-founder of the green magazine Fresh Dirt.


Tom Magnarelli, WRVO

Onondaga County's Lakeview Amphitheater comes to life tonight for the first time, when country star Miranda Lambert takes the stage. Many in the community hail the entertainment venue, along the shores of Onondaga Lake, as an economic engine for years to come. But there are still environmental concerns from one front, about the choice to build a stage on top of 80 feet of industrial waste beds. 

Solvejg Wastvedt / WSKG

The Ithaca Commons pedestrian mall is open again after a facelift that took more than two years to complete.