Sidewalk 5K

I love to walk in Cooperstown.

The streets are lovely and treelined.

Many of the buildings are old, well-kept, and magnificent.

The people are friendly — even the tourists. I think being in a beautiful place brings out the best in folks.

When I read about Automattic’s Worldwide WordPress 5K, I decided to come up with a sidewalk route in Cooperstown. For walkers, like me.

L (my youngest daughter) and I sat down with Google maps and tried to come up with a route. The event runs Monday, September 19th to Sunday, September 25th, but I decided that there’s no place or time like here and now — so we set to work.

The three criteria for my 5K were that it had to be:

  1. In the village of Cooperstown
  2. All on sidewalks
  3. 5K or 3.1 miles

We dragged the lines around on the map — 2.8, 3.5, 3.3, 2.9, and finally, the magic number 3.1.

I printed the map and walked the route last night, clocking the distance on an app called MapMyWalk. (Not that I don’t trust Google maps, but, you know…)

The route started and ended at the Village Library — because so many good things begin at a library.


Right across from the village library stands an historic marker for a log cabin in Cooperstown. The village stuck one of their parking signs next to the marker — kind of a reminder of the old and the new.  You know — you used to be able to chop down trees and put up a log cabin here, now you have to pay if you want to park your car here for a few hours. But parking is free after 6 PM and usually plentiful at that time of day, so that’s another reason I park at the library and walk in the evening.


It was my first time using MapMyWalk on my iPhone. I had planned to take pictures along the route, especially at the intersections, so future walkers would know where and when to turn.

I paused the workout at the first intersection. Oh, look! A little camera icon showed up on the screen. I touched it. Would I like MapMyWalk to access my camera? Why, yes! Yes, I would.

For the whole walk, at every intersection where I turned, I took a picture. When I got home, I found out that those pictures don’t actually show up on my camera roll. They are trapped in the MapMyWalk app. Future walker-photographers, beware.

But here’s the route:

  1. Park in front of the library and walk east on Main Street.
  2. At the first intersection, turn left onto River Street.
  3. Walk one block north. River Street ends at Council Rock (a little park down a steep set of stairs) and Lake Street.
  4. Turn left onto Lake Street. Head west.
  5. Watch for the Otesaga Hotel, an imposing building that will be on your right. When you’re just past it, turn left on Pine Boulevard.
  6. Head south on Pine Boulevard, admiring the lovely Victorian homes on your right.
  7. At the end of Pine Boulevard, you’ll see the County Courthouse right in front of you. Turn right onto Main Street, heading west again.
  8. Just before the steep ascension of upper-upper Main, turn left onto Grove Street.
  9. (Dang! No sidewalks here!) Walk south the length of Grove Street. There will be a stretch of sidewalk in the middle, when you’re going past the beautiful Thanksgiving Home, but, at the end again, no sidewalk. Sorry.
  10. When you arrive at a funky intersection that looks like a math problem — Grove Street, Chestnut Street, and Walnut Street — you want Walnut. Cross the railroad tracks and head east down Walnut.
  11. At the end of Walnut, ignore the little cul-de-sac and turn left onto Susquehanna Avenue.
  12. Walk two blocks north-ish on Susquehanna until you get to Elm Street.
  13. Turn right onto Elm.
  14. At the end of Elm, turn left on Pioneer Street. (That’s the street in town where my mother’s Boston accent occasionally showed up. “Pionee-a” she would say.)
  15. After a very short stint north on Pioneer, turn right onto Church Street.
  16. After one block on Church Street, turn right onto Fair Street.
  17. About two blocks down, turn left onto Atwell Road. Bassett Hospital is there.
  18. Walk one short block, with Bassett’s fieldstone building on your right and a parking lot on your left, then turn left onto River Street. (Yes, the same River Street as at the beginning)
  19. Head north on River until you reach Main Street.
  20. Turn left onto Main and — voila! the Village Library and your car are waiting for you.

I checked the distance at the end. 3.24 miles. Dang.

I failed on two of my three criteria. Grove Street failed me on the sidewalks and the distance was too long.

Time to try again today.

Fortunately I like walking in Cooperstown.


One thought on “Sidewalk 5K

  1. Great route, despite the distance! For photos, try switching to Runkeeper. It does the same as MapMyRun but the photos from the app go straight to your camera photo gallery. It’s what I used for my wwwp5k post!


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