Goshen is the county seat of Orange County. It was originally named in 1714 and was officially defined in 1788. Changes in boundaries continued in the 1800s. Eventually, Goshen became the town it is today. There are now 44 square miles and approximately 14,000 residents that make up the town.
In addition to being the center of Orange County, with courthouses, county and attorney offices, Goshen at one time was a provider of butter. It now produces milk as well as grows onion and celery on black dirt meadows. Goshen was, and still is, also involved in the trotting horse industry which came to town in the early 1800s. Even today, there is a museum and half mile track in the center of the village where training of horses continues.
Things to do in Goshen NY:
A visit to the Harness Racing Museum and Hall of Fame can be a great way to spend some time. The museum is located at 240 Main Street in the center of town. The exhibits do change from time to time, and the best way to find out what is currently on display is to visit their website. Besides the museum itself, there is also a gift shop. In addition, the Goshen Historic Harness Racing Track has many events and activities.
Also close to the town of Goshen is the Orange County Distillery. Located in New Hampton, you can enjoy samples of alcohol that are produced at the Distillery’s own farm. You can tour the farm or participate in events such as “Cigar & Bourbon Pairing” or “Yoga and a Cocktail.” See the above link for more information.
In addition, the Heritage Rail Trail can be accessed in Goshen. The trail extends to Harriman, NY. It is 15 miles long and is often used for walking, running, biking, and dog walking. 5K runs are sometimes conducted on the rail trail as well. While the trail is not cleared of snow and ice in the winter months, some use it as a cross-country ski location.
Every year, the Orange County Fair is held in Walkill, but it originally started in Goshen. The event was originally a one-day fair. It started in 1841 at the Goshen courthouse. There were exhibits of horses, cattle, vegetables, baked goods, flowers and embroidery. In 1897, 10,000 people attended. That size meant the event needed a larger facility, and it moved to the current 31 acre site in Walkill. The fair now brings approximately 250K people each summer for approximately a week to enjoy carnival rides, concessions and concerts.
Items of Interest:
Horse Fountain: Edward H. Harriman was a railroad tycoon who loved horses and the outdoors. In the 1890s, he took over control of Goshen’s Historic Track and conducted horse shows and amateur races. His widow dedicated a Goshen fountain for thirsty horses to his memory in 1911.
Willie “The Lion” Smith: A world famous jazz musician was born in Goshen in 1897. Willie Smith was one of the developers of the Harlem “stride” piano school. He was also a mentor to Fats Waller, George Gershwin, Duke Ellington, Artie Shaw and others.
Places to Live:
Goshen has a lot of options for living, including many single family homes of every style imaginable, from small cottages to large estate and tudor style homes. There are also condominium complexes and rental homes. If you want to live in a development, that option exists as well. Below are just a few of the developments in the Goshen area:
- The Estates at Rolling Ridge: This is a development of new construction homes off Maple Avenue. There will be 24 homes between 2,200 and 3,300 square feet. At the time of this writing, base prices range from $440K to $650K.
- Heritage at Goshen: This is also a new community, with 75 homes planned off of Old Chester Road. Starting prices are $349K, and includes ranch and colonial style homes.
- Harness Estates: Harness Estates is a newly completed development off of Harness Road. Saddle Ridge at Harness Estates is the new phase that is under development. Prices start at $370K.
- The Paddock: This development is a condominium complex that was built in the 1980s. The 54 units typically sell between $200-250K, and are walkable to town.
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