Saturday, May 12, 2012

Spring in an old Dutch City

Albany was settled by the Dutch in 1614, after its discovery by Henry Hudson, an Englishman who sailed by the Dutch, in 1609.  There are few pieces of great Dutch history alluded to in the city, from the rooftops on lower Lancaster Street to the old Dutch house on top of a 10 story building that can be seen from Townsend Square Park, Madison Avenue and Washington Park.

Another wonderful piece of Dutch legacy is the covering of the city in tulips.

Albany is home to Tulip Fest and numerous community-supported gardens, filled with tulips and many other flowers.  This year, the number of tulips was unfortunately cut by roughly 30%.  Turns out tulips have increased in price by 9 cents per bulb in the last year, a year that wasn't exactly conducive to large borderline Rust Belt city budgets.

Not only that, but Tulip Fest, one of the city's largest festivals, barely made it this year.  The warm winter and early spring have done a number on the climate of the region, including the cycle of the tulips in Washington Park.  Actually, beyond the festival itself, the whole city had passed its peak in the beginning of May.

Let's start with Downtown Albany and some of the local colleges:

Red tulips on State Street in Downtown.

The College of Saint Rose sign and flower bed on Western Avenue.

Some of the flower beds much earlier in the year.  They're now in full bloom.

Saint Rose's Hubbard Interfaith Sanctuary on the quad.

In front of the Neil Hellman Library, with Lima and Alumni Halls beyond.

The Saint Rose quad.

An older College of Saint Rose sign on Madison Avenue, with Saint Joseph Hall in the background.

Moran Hall, the original building of the college.

The other new gateway sign on Madison Avenue.

The University at Albany downtown campus.  I totally skipped part of class to take these pictures.

A sign listing the halls behind.