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Rochester skyline.

Life in Rochester

The third most populous city in New York, Rochester sits on the Genesee River between Lake Ontario and the Erie Canal. With 19 colleges and universities and 62,000 college students, the Rochester region has a reputation for higher education, and is a natural center for college life.

Rochester, the third largest urban area in New York, is only six miles from campus – offering recreation, exploration, and fun!

Rochester, the third largest urban area in New York, is only six miles from campus – offering recreation, exploration, and fun!

Life at Fisher gives you easy access to life in Rochester, centered around educational, service, and career-building opportunities, along with a wide selection of cultural and recreational activities.

Recreation

Coffee shops, clubs, movie theaters, and restaurants are only the beginning of the opportunities for adventure in Rochester. Take a ride around town and experience the parks, culture, and neighborhoods that make Rochester unique.

Restaurants

If you get tired of the nationally-recognized dining options offered on campus, don't worry. Fisher is only a few miles away from some of the best restaurants in Rochester. From accessible fast food joints to fabulous gourmet dining, you will never have to worry about pulling an all-nighter on an empty stomach.

A quick car or bus ride can have you eating Rochester classics like the garbage plate, Abbott's frozen custard, or buffalo wings in minutes. A diverse array of local restaurants feature the cuisine of Mexico, Thailand, Japan, Ethiopia, India, and the Middle East, to name a few.

For late night snacks, a bevy of food trucks offering everything from meatballs to poutine to barbecue circulate at popular downtown locations.

Grab some friends for a movie at the Little Theatre, enjoy live music downtown,  or take your pick of local sports. All this and more, just minutes from campus.

Grab some friends for a movie at the Little Theatre, enjoy live music downtown, or take your pick of local sports. All this and more, just minutes from campus.

Theatre and Music

Fisher is a short distance away from the Geva Theatre, the Rochester Broadway Theatre League (RBTL), and several local theater companies where you can enjoy performances such as "Les Miserables," “Chicago,” or "Hamilton." If you are a music fan and need somewhere to go after Fisher's on-campus open-mic-night, the Blue Cross Arena and the Rochester Auditorium Theatre are easy to get to from campus and host the big name bands that will keep you in tune.

Rochester has a wealth of smaller and mid-sized venues, including Eastman Theatre, the Bug Jar, Abilene, Flour City Station, and Skylark, which are frequent stops for local, regional, and national tours. Many local shows are free or low-cost.

For fans of classical music, the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, the Hochstein School, and the Eastman School of Music have a broad range of orchestral and instrumental performances throughout the year.

During the warmer months, outdoor venues in the city’s South Wedge and Downtown neighborhoods often have free live music in conjunction with the many festivals that take place each year. The Rochester Public Market also frequently has live music on Saturdays and hosts a regular outdoor music series, and Party in the Park features popular weekly concerts with nationally-recognized musicians.

Museums and Culture

Trace the historic landscapes around Fisher's campus and throughout the city of Rochester at the Memorial Art Gallery or the International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House. Visit the Rochester Museum and Science Center or be a kid again at the Strong National Museum of Play. Walk in the footsteps of Susan B. Anthony, national crusader for women's rights.

Explore an explosion of art and sculpture in the 40,000 square foot ArtisanWorks building. A number of fine art and photography galleries are located in the Neighborhood of the Arts, including an outdoor, interactive art trail.

Outdoor Recreation

At Fisher, you are within reach of hundreds of miles of mixed-use trails in the Rochester and Finger Lakes region. Whether you’re seeking hiking, biking, or walking trails, there are an abundance of places to explore.

A large trail network follows the Erie Canal, the Genesee River, and the Lehigh Valley, connecting small towns, city neighborhoods, and parks of all sizes. Several local parks have well-maintained trails for running, hiking or mountain biking, and Dryer Road Park in nearby Victor features a skills course and over 132 acres of biking trails.

Aquatic pursuits abound in the canal, waterways, and bays around Rochester. Kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, and canoeing are all popular activities, with launches and rentals available at several locations.

If golf is your game, several well-maintained public and private golf courses are close to campus, many within a ten minute drive. The historic Oak Hill Country Club has frequently hosted the PGA and other championship tournaments. 

Parks and Nature

Rochester boasts more than 3,500 acres of city parks, including several designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the architect of Central Park in New York City. Monroe County, where Fisher is located, has many well-maintained parks, and in the Finger Lakes region, more than 40 national parks are within a short drive of Fisher’s campus. In the winter, many parks are used for snowshoeing or cross-country skiing. Additionally, Fisher is within a two-hour drive of several popular ski resorts.

Professional Sports

Rochester is the home town for various sports teams that compete all year long. Drive five minutes to Frontier Field, the Red Wings' ball park, or take a walk towards Fisher's football stadium and watch the Buffalo Bills prepare for their upcoming season during summer training camp. Head down to Sahlen's Stadium to cheer on the Rochester Rhinos soccer team.

For music, movies, comedy and more, visit one of the Rochester’s signature festivals, including the International Jazz Festival, the ImageOut Film Festival, the quirky Fringe Festival, and the Lilac Festival.

For music, movies, comedy and more, visit one of the Rochester’s signature festivals, including the International Jazz Festival, the ImageOut Film Festival, the quirky Fringe Festival, and the Lilac Festival.

Festivals

Take part in one of the many festivals Rochester offers. The Lilac Festival kicks off the "festival season" in mid-May. Live music, food trucks, and art takeover Highland Park for 10 days. The annual Rochester International Jazz Festival draws headliners from around the world, as well as thousands of visitors, for nine days in June. Not limited to jazz, free and ticketed performances are available daily and include blues, rock, reggae, soul, and classical musicians.

Fisher is conveniently located on East Avenue, where many live shows are available on the street or in venues that line the street. Throughout the summer, neighborhood festivals showcase the unique culture of Rochester's neighborhoods, including the Park Ave Festival, the Corn Hill Arts Festival, and Party in the Park.

Internships

As the home of such nationally known businesses as Wegmans, Bausch and Lomb, and Paychex, this city makes an ideal site for internships. Fisher students—often with the support of local alumni—connect with companies throughout Rochester to gain valuable experience. And students in nearly every discipline find service-learning opportunities that enhance their course work.

Area Hotels

Friends and family have numerous four-star hotels to choose from while they visit you in Rochester. From the quiet bed and breakfast to the luxury spa, your visitors will find exactly what they need close to Fisher's campus. Check out our Area Accommodations page for more information.