I Love the Nightlife!

Ready for a night on the town?

Looking for the right place to take someone special for dinner, like the fine dining served at the most stylish bistros? Does the idea of joining some friends for great food and drinks at a trendy pub or sidewalk Café’ appeal to you?

Do you enjoy the arts? How about an evening at the theatre to be entertained by a hit musical or a more “Off Broadway” production? Or would you care to be among the first to discover that wonderful original production? Wondering where you might find an art house cinema to view an independent film or the revival of a classic? Do you like live music concerts or stand-up comedy in an intimate theater setting?

It might sound more like something you would find in the Big Apple than a small town, but you don’t have to fight the traffic of the big city to enjoy dinner and a show. It is all right here in the center of the Finger Lakes Region. For a city its size, Auburn’s nightlife is surprisingly diverse. It is at the same time upscale and cultured, and casual and unpretentious, providing a place where white-collar and blue-collar both feel at home.

Walk the streets of Downtown Auburn these days, and you find a city that has been revitalized. Teeming with new businesses and renovated buildings, you sense that the downtown district has been reborn in the last few years. Benefiting from a surge of local investors working with city planners, the area has become a center for the arts and entertainment, along with new upscale eateries and watering holes. Bistros loaded with ambience and sidewalk Cafés present award-winning fare from New York City chefs. Cigar and martini bars, microbreweries and pubs serve up grille favorites, along with a wide selection of wines, craft beers, and hard ciders – many made locally or even on the premises. Live music by top local musicians is performed at a number of the taverns, as well as city sponsored outdoor street concerts to add to the festivities.

Building on an established theatre tradition, throughout the summer, The Rev Theatre Company features professional musical productions at the beautiful Merry-Go-Round Playhouse, and the historic The Pitch. The Merry-Go-Round Playhouse located on the shores of Owasco Lake at Emerson Park has delighted theatergoers for decades with top-notch productions of Broadway musicals performed by talented, professional actors. Located at the historic Carriage House behind Cayuga Museum and Case Research Lab, The Pitch presents original play productions in an intimate cabaret style theater.

Auburn Public Theater, in the center of downtown Auburn, presents year-round entertainment with national touring acts, live music, non-musical plays, and stand-up comedy; along with their summer Off-Broadway productions in an intimate 200-seat theatre. Located in the same building, Auburn Public Cinema is an art house cinema featuring independent, documentary, foreign, classic and family films. While your there, enjoy the food and drink offerings at Auburn Public Theater’s latest addition, Cafe 108.

Whether you are looking to unwind after a hard day at work, enjoying a romantic evening for two, taking in dinner and a show, or keeping the party going; Downtown Auburn has become the destination for fun!

Broadway in the Finger Lakes!

It is hard to imagine a more perfect way to spend a summer evening. Experience musical theatre in the delightful setting of the Merry-Go-Round Playhouse! Located at Emerson Park amid the towering trees, sprawling lawns, and Victorian-style buildings on the shoreline of sparkling clear Owasco Lake; this beautifully renovated, early 20th century carousel building is home to the region’s largest professional musical theatre. The 501 seating capacity of the Preston H. Thomas Theater welcomes both recent Broadway releases and revivals of stage classics.


The picturesque locale is home to the The Rev Theatre Company, which features professional musical productions from May to October. It is Summer Stock at its finest!

You will find another charming and unique home for the The Rev Theatre Company productions at The Carriage House behind the historic Case Research Lab. In this intimate venue, The Rev Theatre Company hosts THE PITCH, which provides a showcase for original plays. Once known as The Museum Playhouse, the 19th century carriage house first became a home to community theatre in 1941. Doors closed on the theatre after productions were moved to the Merry-Go-Round Playhouse in the early 1970’s. In 2011, the theater was completely renovated and once again opened to the public, featuring a cabaret-style theater and stage and public venue.


Downtown Auburn, a city clearly dedicated to the arts, provides more theatre entertainment at The Main Stage at Auburn Public Theater.  Located in the center of Auburn’s thriving nightlife, the theater presents national musicals, touring acts, live music, non-musical plays, and comedians in an intimate 200-seat theatre.

Front Entrance Photo

The venue is also the home to Auburn Public Cinema, a 65-seat art house cinema with the highest quality digital projection and HD sound that screens independent, documentary, foreign, classic and family films.

While many small cities across America continue to struggle to remain relevant and viable, Auburn is a city that has found an identity as a thriving theatre community. Combined with the natural beauty and recreation residing in The Finger Lakes Region, arts and entertainment make this scenic city a great place to call home – even if you’re new here.