Skip to main content

Western New York Explorer's Guide

The only comprehensive travel guide to the region

Home
About Us
Contact Us
Site Map
Member Login
About Author
Media Interviews
Testimonials
WNY Resources
WNY Attractions and More
Explore WNY blog
Upcoming events
Articles
Celebrate Black History
Naples, NY
Olean
Mayville Ice Festival
Mid winter getaways
Art and History Museums
Visit Aviation Museums
Hiking Trails
Welland Canal
Athenaeum hotel
Bemus Point
Cobblestone Trail
Niagara Pkwy part 1
Niagara Pkwy part 2
Rock Park
Clifton Springs
WNY Amish
Nature in Winter
Wine & Chocolate
Winter Wonderland
Outdoors in winter
Inside in winter
Old Fort Niagara
Power Vista
WNY Waterfalls
Corning
Dads and Cars
Artpark
Hershey
Native American
Lake Ontario Shore
Lockport Cave
Sonnenberg
Amish traditions
Day Trips Rock
Country Barn Quilt
Halloween in WNY
Fest of Lights
Chautauqua Holiday
NYC by Train
Chautauqua Wine Trail
Mayville Ice Castle
Outdoor winter fun
Chautauqua Institution
Farm Markets
Recharge at Chautauqua
Niagara Wine Trail
Local boat rides
Local beaches
Chautauqua County
Lewiston Jazz Fest
Hammondsport
Buffalo Waterfront
Pumpkin Fun
Chau Wine Trail LEL
Fall Road Trips
Off season getaways
Free attractions
Winter Fun
Spring Break
Taughannock
Winery Train
St Lawrence Seaway
Seaway Trail Journey
Welland Canal LEL
Sandusky
Cleveland
Fall Festivals
Scenic Fall Drives
Holiday Hollow
Shopping in NYC
Holiday Shopping Corning
Buffalo has Wright
Snowshoeing
Toronto
Elmira
Buffalo Religious Art
Ten must see getaways
Chautauqua and Erie
Welland Murals
The Tonawandas
Ten Hidden Places
Wing Festival
Presque Isle
Marble
Lewisburg PA
Victorian Christmas
Chocolate Trail
Fun with Grandkids
George Eastman House
National Historic Landmar
Thing for Wings
Olcott Beach
Little League Museum
Rock City
Glass Blowing
Queenston ON
Lawn Fetes
Chautauqua Co Bicentennia
Shaw Festival
Chautauqua County 2
Olcott Carousel
10 Hidden Gems
Chautauqua
Olcott Beach 2
Roycroft
Hot Dog Spots
Westfield
Canandaigua
Enjoy Presque Isle
One Tank Trips
Belhurst Castle
Shop in Lewiston
Cuba Cheese Museum
Pumpkinville 2
Snowshoe 2
Spooky Treats
Walkable Shopping
Norman Rockwell Museum
Fatima Shrine Lights
Christmas Lights
Albright Knox
Darwin Martin
Maple Weekend
Divine Mercy Shrine
Erie Canal
Rochester
Cape Cod
Cobblestone Trail 2
8 Great Fall Road Trips
Little Known Places
Buy Local
Made in America Store
Vidlers
Great Lakes Seaway Trail
Lovely Gardens
WNY Festivals
Erie PA Waterfront
Grape Discovery Center
Salt Sanctuary
Holiday Hollow 2
Historic Hull House
Buffalo Religious Arts Ce
Mall Madness
One day holiday getaways
New York City by train
Cabin Fever
Niagara on the Lake
Elmira 150th Anniversary
Carousels of WNY
Ontario Beach Park
Lockport Locks
USA Bird Supply Blog Arch
Backroads and Byways of U
Democrat & Chronicle

August 19, 2007

 

According to Tradtion (WNY Amish Community)
By Christine A. Smyczynski



When you mention the Amish, Lancaster County Pennsylvania might come to mind; however, you don’t have to travel that far to visit an Amish community because there are many Amish living nearby, in the southentier of western New York. Known for their skilled craftsmanship, many Amish make a living selling quilts, furniture, cabinets, clocks, wooden items, and baked goods from shops beside their homes.

 

To appreciate why the Amish live like they do, it’s helpful to understand their background. My daughter and I recently went on an Amish Flair Tour with Carol Lorenc of the Foxe Farmhouse Bed & Breakfast in Cherry Creek.

 

We met Carol at The Depot, a unique gift shop located in Cherry Creek’s 1896 railroad depot. Patty Frost, proprietor of the shop and an expert on the local Amish community, told us a bit of history on how the Amish religion began. We learned that the three most important things to the Amish are faith, family and community. Their religion is based on being humble; that’s why they dress alike, so they don’t stand out.

 

The community located in the Cherry Creek/Leon area, which began in 1949 when several families arrived here from Ohio, is mainly Old Order Amish, who live life at a slower pace than the rest of the world. They live without electricity, indoor plumbing and other modern conveniences; they also travel in horse-drawn buggies.

 

Carol took us on a driving tour of the area, including stops at several shops. One stop was at Levi and Elizabeth Wengerd’s quilt shop on Dredge Road, stocked with many beautiful quilts, pillows, wall hangings and rugs made by the women of the family. Elizabeth explained that since they don’t have the distractions of modern life, their handiwork is also their form of entertainment and socialization.

 

We also stopped at Dan Raber’s shop on Pope Road, which is filled with all sorts of wooden toys and kitchen items. A diesel engine below the shop runs all the woodworking equipment. Carol noted that they can make just about anything out of wood if you bring them a picture.

 

Carol’s tour concluded with a three-course tea at the circa 1864 Cherry Creek Inn Bed & Breakfast, served by innkeeper, Sharon Howe Sweeting.

 

                        

Paul and Sue Fisher of Randolph in Cattaraugus County also offer tours of Amish country. Their two and a half hour Delightfully Country Amish Tours take you to Amish shops just north of Randolph. Their tours are “step-on,” which means that you do the driving in your own vehicle and the guide rides along.

 

The Fishers run their tours, by reservation, year-round, Monday-Saturday. Starting times for the tours are flexible, but they generally take place at 9:30, 12:30 and 3:30 May-Oct. and 10 am and 2pm Nov.-April. You can also tour Amish country on your own; pick up maps at either the Cattaraugus or Chautauqua Visitors Bureaus. However, keep these things in mind when touring the area. First, Amish shops are never open on Sunday. Second, there are no gas stations nearby, so fill the tank before you go. Next, they do not accept credit cards, only cash or checks and finally, do not take photos of the Amish, as it is against their beliefs.

 

Besides the Amish shops and the previous mentioned Depot, Rustic Creations on Main Street in Cherry Creek, has nature themed gifts and home décor items. In South Dayton, Candy Apple Mercantile has unique country gift items. There are also a few small shops in Randolph.

 

When hunger strikes, good choices are the Trillium Lodge in Cherry Creek, The Mustard Seed, in South Dayton, or Oregano’s Family Restaurant in Randolph.


If you go
Cattaraugus County Tourism (1-800-331-0543; www.enchantedmountains.info) 303 Court St., Little Valley. Contact them for maps of the location of Amish shops. Maps can also be obtained from the Chautauqua County Visitors Bureau (1-800-242-4569; www.tourchautauqua.com ) Main Gate at the Chautauqua Institution.


Amish Flair Tours (Carol Lorenc) Foxe Farm Bed and Breakfast, (877-468-5523, 716-962-3412; www.foxefarmhouse.com) 1880 Thornton Rd., Cherry Creek. Tours by reservation.


Delightfully Country Amish Tours Paul and Sue Fisher (716-358-9730) Randolph, NY. These 2 ½ hour tours of Amish country are offer year-round, Mon.-Sat. by reservation.


Randolph area information (716-358-9701, www.discoverrandolph.com)

 

Cherry Creek Inn Bed & Breakfast (296-5105, www.cherrycreekinn.net)  1022 West Rd., Cherry Creek

Directions
Take the New York State Thruway (I-90) west to Hamburg (exit 57) and follow Route 75 south to Route 62 south, which you will travel on for about 15-20 miles. To head to South Dayton and Cherry Creek, turn right on Route 322, which runs through South Dayton. For Cherry Creek, continue on Route 322 and turn left on Route 83 and travel about 10 miles. To go to Randolph, follow Route 62 to Route 241 south to Randolph. Amish shops are located along and near Route 62 in Leon and Conewango, as well as north of Randolph. Look for the signs pointing to the various shops.