Somewhat in contrast to the other towns which surround it in Upstate New York, Ithaca is home to several cultural institutions and museums that one would be accustomed to finding in much larger cities.  This is mainly due to the presence of Cornell University and Ithaca College and the influence that they have on the surrounding community.  Among the town's two major museums is the Sciencenter.  This science museum features several seasonal exhibitions as well as permanent exhibits for children and adults alike ranging in topic from the Solar System to the Oceans.  The museum is available to host children's parties and other events.  It is open seven days a week.  See their website for more details.

Ithaca's other museum, The Museum of the Earth, is a natural history museum featuring thousands of fossils from a variety of dinosaurs and plants and other prehistoric animals.  In addition to its fossils the museum also holds a number of interactive, educational exhibits for people of all ages.  It is an important educational resource for local teachers and students and a favorite with visitors to the area.  The museum is closed on Tuesdays during the winter months. 

Another popular local attraction is the Hangar Theatre,  a professional theatre located in a renovated airplane hangar on the site of Ithaca's first airport. The Hangar stages plays and musicals that often feature Broadway stars. They also have concerts and other events including a theatre series based on favorite children's books, summer theatre camps, cabarets, and holiday programs. The theatre is also available to rent for events.

For adult visitors, the small but always delightful Ithaca Beer Company  is a great stop off the beaten path. On Saturday and Sunday tours are offered at the top of every hour or by special arrangement for larger parties.  Reservations aren't necessary unless you are with a group larger than 10. Arrive early to take advantage of their tasting bar.