The original capital of New York, Kingston is a town steeped in history and evolution, as evidenced by the revitalization of midtown and the preservation of the historic architecture. This small, diverse Hudson Valley city, as empty factories and warehouses will testify, was once influenced by a fleeting moment of industrialism but now boasts a resurgence as locals and Brooklyn transplants alike revitalize its buildings with new enterprises and contagious energy.
And while NYC residents moving up to Kingston is no new phenomenon, the restaurants, shops, and boutique hotels that have opened up over the last decade have made this part of Ulster County a go-to for startups, established businesses, and artists to live and work.
Even with these bustling businesses, Kingston remains tied to the land and its roots as a farming community. This is showcased by the uptown summer farmer’s market where you’ll find local everything and real community pride as you walk through the closed-off streets and shop for things your neighbors have created or grown. The whole market is open-air, dog and kid-friendly, and features a plethora of local artists, makers, and farmers. Beyond these activated streets, are the paths less-trafficked where farm stands pepper rural Kingston neighborhoods and the picturesque towns of Hurley, Ulster Park, and Eddyville are just a few minutes drive.
Kingston is expansive – the town of Kingston is quite large, and much of it is rural. The city of Kingston, on the other hand, is the most urban community in Ulster County, with three distinct commercial districts: Uptown (or the Stockade), Midtown, and the Rondout (referred to by many old-timers as Downtown, due to its location at the bottom of a steep hill, bordering the Rondout Creek). It’s a cool and eclectic hub where established shops that have been a mainstay for up to fifty years sit comfortably alongside the new ventures popping up daily, lending vibrancy and a feeling of progress throughout the city.
Kingston is, and always has been, a place where business is built and community flourishes.
Learning your way around Kingston can easily be done by driving around and getting to know the side streets + main roads, but we suggest tackling it in three parts. Depending on what you’re into and looking for: (1) the Strand or the Rondout (anywhere by the water is always the first place people go when they visit) (2) Midtown (the Arts District), and (3) Uptown Kingston; if you like history, parks, and shopping local wares, you’ll be right at home.
The easiest way to get to Kingston is by car on the thruway, take 87 to Exit 19. But if you’re coming carless from the city, the Trailways Bus stops right in town too. There are trains to Poughkeepsie about 30 minutes away. The center of Kingston is about 40 minutes from SWF + an hour from the ALB airport.
Kingston was burned by the British on October 13, 1777 – the locals fled to nearby Hurley for safety. Every other year, Kingston celebrates and re-enacts the burning of the city (no word on 2021’s plans as of yet).
Kingston has two zip codes. The zip code for P.O. boxes and the post office in Kingston is 12402 but the main zip code is 12401.
The Kingston Stockade Football Club (Stockade FC) was founded in 2015 and competes in the National Premier Soccer League, which is in the 4th division of the US soccer pyramid.
In October 2011, red goats were spray-painted on newly installed planters throughout the Stockade District, allegedly as a public art form of protest over a renovation project. Since then, the goats have been seen far from Kingston – at the Marcy Avenue subway stop, the Williamsburg bridge in Brookly, in Missouri, Michigan, Canada and at the Art Basel show in Miami.
The Kingston directory includes businesses, events and attractions in three distinct areas that make up the city of Kingston:
THE STRAND / RONDOUT
Downtown Kingston is a staple for date night with its classic marina neighborhood.
Artsy, industrial, filled with new creative energy
Eclectic + historic buildings, tree-lined streets, endless unique real estate