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As I was driving up to Corning this fall, I couldn’t help but notice the signs to make your own glass pumpkins. So while I was thrilled that our travel conference was being held at the Corning Museum of Glass, an interesting venue, I got really excited about making my own pumpkin!
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That is the beauty of the Corning Museum of Glass – it is so much more than just a place where you can see art. But first, you’ll be greeted by this Chihuly sculpture in the lobby! There are children’s activity sheets to keep them engaged. Follow along on an audio tour that you can download. There’s even a Glassapp scavenger hunt which will lead you to explore areas of the museum and learn about the exhibits. It’s fun for everyone.
The exhibit area is divided up into sections representing different historic times. You’ll see pieces progress from the most ancient times until glass became more thoroughly used in homes and up into the artistic uses of glass. The collections go on and on and you’ll see how the use of glass has changed.
Several demonstrations take place every day – so get a schedule when you arrive!
I watched two of them: Flameworking and Hot Glass. I was sad to miss the Optical Fiber demo and the Glassbreaking demo – both of which I had heard a lot about!
The flameworking demo lasted about 20 minutes and the glassworker was informative while making a lovely peacock!
There are two hot glass demonstrations – one lasting approximately 30 minutes and another a full two hours. If you’re wondering whether the two hour demonstration is worth it – yes! You’ll get to see the process from beginning to end and it takes a while to see what you originally thought was going to be a vase turn into a beautiful bright platter. The artistry is incredible!
Make Your Own Glass
How unique is this? You can choose from several different experiences from sandblasting to making your own ornament. The cost varies depending on the experience, with the average around $32, similar to the cost of the items themselves. I made a glass pumpkin – I loved choosing the colors and blowing into the pipe to help give it form! You can reserve your spot ahead of time (especially if you’re planning a Saturday visit!) or see what projects are being offered.
HOT TIP: If you’re making something with hot glass, your item will need to cool down overnight. You can pick it up after 3pm the next day. Some items can be shipped to you for an additional fee, so plan your visit accordingly!
In celebration of the 150th anniversary of Corning Corporation, the GlassBarge floated from the original Brooklyn Flint Glass Company’s relocation path to Corning. The GlassBarge has a self-contained hot glass blowing demonstration lasting approximately 30 minutes. The best part? It is FREE! I hope they continue this offering in 2019 and upcoming years. This has been a great opportunity to take the Corning Museum of Glass outside of the confines of the museum so that people in multiple areas can experience glass making.
Know Before You Go:
- Check the hours and details on their website.
- If you’re going to make glass, make sure you’ll be around the next day after 3pm to pick it up (or expect to pay for shipping).
- Adult tickets are $19.95 but include admission for two days (other discounts available)
- Kids are FREE!
- FREE admission for veterans during the month of November
I rarely spend more than a few hours at a museum (short attention span). But with everything to do and see at the Corning Museum of Glass, you can easily spend a day here. A cafe will power you through lunch. The gift shop provides a great opportunity for guests to pick up a souvenir or gift for those back home.
Wondering what else to do in the area? Check out what else there is to do in the Finger Lakes Region. Corning also makes a great stop over if you’re on your way to Niagara Falls.
Annick, The Common Traveler
I love history and crafts so this sounds perfect. I hope to visit one day. Thanks for sharing!! Cassie x
A good blend of both for sure.
You made that pumpkin?! I love a factory visit and Corning Glass is iconic. Great post
What an interesting place! And they even have scavenger hunts, amazing! I also like the idea that you can make your own glass, that’s truly a plus!
It was really engaging.
making yuour own glass pumpkin – this sounds awesome! I would totally love to visit the museum and learn about the process of making glass.So nice that your travel con was at the same place. Scavenger hunt activity is also exciting
It was a fabulous site for a conference.
Oh, the make your own glass experience sounds so perfect! I love this! I’m also a huge fan of Chihuly sculpture art so I would love to visit someday. This seems like such a unique experience.
It was fun!
I am totally sold out for this Corning Glass Museum and it is good that we create something unique and can take back. You really create a cute pumpkin with beautiful colors. In the exhibits area, that pink chandelier is stunning and looks very unique. $32 sounds a good price to learn something unique. Thanks for sharing a creative activity.
It was an amazing experience that I would do again. Maybe a flower for spring.
A very interesting post and something my wife quite enjoys doing. I will definitely try and visit it when I am around the area. Some great tips from you around the visit like kids are free and the timings to visit if you want to get involved in making the glass. The museum looks very nice with some great pieces of glass art . THANKS FOR SHARING THIS UNIQUE ACTIVITY AND PLACE TO VISIT.
Lots to do for all ages.
We went with a group and took a tour. Our guide was great and we learned a lot. We also made pumpkins and it was a lot of fun. I wished I read your before you go section before I visited. I didn’t know that the ticket includes admission for two days and there are other discounts available. Thank you for sharing
I love the Chihuly glass sculpture; there’s a grand one in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, check it out if you ever visit! The Corning Museum looks like a fun and interactive day trip. I like the sound of your pumpkin glass too!
This looks like somewhere I’d love to visit. The combination of exhibition of a wide range of glass art and items, plus the chance to watch a variety of different demonstrations and then the chance to make something yourself. I love your pumpkin, it looks fantastic, did you get to help shape it too?