Recently people have been joining me on my Sunday Walks in Downtown Albany. Typically, I walk in Albany when I'm scheduled as a tour guide on the USS Slater (DE Docent). A slide show and a map are detailed at this blog entry. The USS Slater is now open. I plan on walking in Albany on Monday, Memorial Day, May 27. You can contact me at:

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

2010-05-05 - Congress Park

Congress Park and Canfield Casino lies in the heart of Saratoga Springs. The Casino was built in 1870 by John Morrissey, a very famous boxer and congressman (check the link for an interesting story). In 1894 it was bought by Richard Canfield (like Morrissey, Canfield was also famous). He bought up much of the property around the Casino to construct Congress park. Anti-gambling pressure forced him to close the doors in 1907. A few years later the property was sold to the city of Saratoga Springs. He died in 1914 (here's a link to his obit). Some people credit the invention of the Club Sandwich to the Canfield Casino.

The Carousel in the park was carved by a noted carver - Marcus Charles Illions. The park contains a statute (Spirit of Life) by Daniel Chester French. There is also a Civil War Memorial, for the locally organized 77th NY Regiment (Bemis Heights Regiment). This regiment left Saratoga Springs in November, 1861 and fought in many of the major battles of the war (Antietam, Gettysburg and Appomattox).

The walk that I outlined here is approximately one mile long. It covers all the major sites in the park. This short walk is a great prelude or post script to a longer walk around Saratoga Springs. There are plenty of great eating establishments in very close proximity. There is limited on the street parking within the park, but ample spaces on the north boundary of the park (across Spring Street). Across Broadway, from the park entrance is the Saratoga Springs visitor center. | Congress Park - Saratoga Springs, New York

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