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Tompkins County, New York

Tompkins County, New York stands out as a region of breathtaking beauty and diverse lifestyle. Ice Age glaciers moved through the area, leaving behind deeply cut gorges and stunning waterfalls, along with Cayuga Lake, the largest of New York's Finger Lakes.

Just like the topography, Tompkins County weather is known for its many variations. Sometimes called the 'land of the lost umbrella', residents tend to dress in layers and be prepared for anything. The fall colors dazzle here, as well as the blooms of spring. Ithaca, the county seat, claims the title of the 'Forsythia City'.

The business climate is equally diverse. Tompkins County began its life as a trading post in the 1700's, with its easy access to water transport. Manufacturing has been a major industry here, and remains so today, with the area producing computer chips and software, along with airplane and auto parts. New high-tech companies are discovering this beautiful region every day. Tompkins County boasts one of the strongest economies in the northeast. Unemployment remains consistently low and the highly skilled workforce proves a huge draw for incoming firms.

Tompkins County considers education its most vital industry, starting with its public school system, rated one of the finest in the nation. Cornell University was founded here in 1868, and today, Ithaca College and Tompkins Cortland Community College serve the region, drawing in more than 25,000 students to the area. Tompkins County is home to many inventors, authors, artists and professors.

Tompkins County's population of 96,500 people (Census 2000 data) enjoys the stunning natural beauty around them. Forests and lakes, preserves and trails provide premier recreation. Boating, fishing and camping are summer activities, while winter offers skiing, snow shoeing and ice-skating. Hockey remains a local passion.

Nine towns comprise Tompkins County, along with six smaller villages. The largest is the county seat of Ithaca, with a population of just over 18,000. Residents searching for smaller town life can find it in the villages of Freeville and Trumansburg, with populations of less than 2,000. Throughout the region, museums and galleries abound. The Hangar Theatre Hangar Theatre and the Kitchen Theatre Kitchen Theatre provide local dramatic performances, while the college productions can often rival Broadway. The colleges offer a wide array of concerts and music of every type.

Tompkins County, NY is by far one of the most diverse and intriguing regions in upstate New York. Whether one is looking for a great vacation in wild, natural beauty, or a wonderful place to live, study and work, Tompkins County has it!


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