Treasures aren’t ‘hidden’ when you make the effort to look

"Stacks," an outdoor sculpture by David Harper at the Stone Quarry Hill Art Park in Cazenovia, NY.

“Stacks,” an outdoor sculpture by David Harper at the Stone Quarry Hill Art Park in Cazenovia, N.Y.

Here’s one from the “What took me so long?” file.

Just a 20-minute drive from the town I’ve lived in for the past 30 years is the Stone Quarry Hill Art Park in Cazenovia, N.Y.

Contemplating

“Contemplating Man,” sculpture by Dorothy Riester.

Last weekend marked my first visit to this beautiful, whimsical place. I owe it to my girlfriend, who suggested visiting the art park on a pleasant Saturday afternoon.

A steady but comfortable breeze, and just the right amount of late summer sunshine, provided the perfect ambience to enjoy the sculptures that seemingly popped out at random as we walked the grounds.

In the back of my mind during our visit I kept thinking … What other cool places right under my nose am I missing?

I certainly knew of the art park’s existence, and for years have read about its events, exhibits and artists-in-residence. Yet I never once made the short trip to check it out.

There are the usual reasons and excuses — family, job, other interests — but I’ll throw in lack of imagination and effort, certainly.

"Earth," by Susan Wink.

“Earth,” by Susan Wink.

A return to the art park is a must, but I feel compelled to start a list of other local places and events that I’ve neglected. Another to-do list is the last thing I need, but this one may produce more gems that have been hiding in plain sight.

For the record, Stone Quarry Hill Art Park — founded in 1991 by Bob and Dorothy Riester — has a remarkable philosophy and history. It is devoted not only to art and artists, but to preserving open spaces. The park itself covers 104 acres, and has several miles of walking trails.

The photo below is of a 900-foot-long sculpture that greets visitors as they drive in. A one-minute time-lapse video of the artists installing the flags is here on Vimeo.

It’s a pretty cool video. But the piece of art, like all the others at the park, is much better in person.

"The Third Iteration" by artists Bland Hoke and Matt Rink at Stone Quarry Hill Art Park.

“The Third Iteration” by artists Bland Hoke and Matt Rink at Stone Quarry Hill Art Park.

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About Jim McKeever

Writer, father, runner, advocate based in Central New York.
This entry was posted in art, books, Irish Investigations, peace and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Treasures aren’t ‘hidden’ when you make the effort to look

  1. markbialczak says:

    I do believe you may be drafting your most rewarding to-do list ever, my friend. This Art Park is gorgeous. And, since I know you asked mentally, no, me neither, Jim.

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  2. chmjr2 says:

    I will have to put this on my to do list. It looks to me to be a place you can relax at and at the same time get a lift for yourself.

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  3. That park looks amazing Jim! It’s funny because I think that most people don’t know the great places to visit in their own areas. When I have out-of-province or country visitors, often that is when I end up visiting a place I did not even know existed!

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  4. This park would be a must see for me if I was close. I have recently started exploring more of my close by world. And love it. 🙂 We always overlook what is close by. Why is that?

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  5. Jim McKeever says:

    Colleen, I wish I had the answer … after a while, maybe we just don’t see things under our noses because they become too familiar. Was your walking post in Hocking Hills? The photos reminded me of it, even though it’s been 30-plus years. And I’ll try to enjoy the Columbus scenery when I’m running the marathon course in a few weeks!

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