Like many historic industrial cities, the Port of Troy has been recovering from 20th Century setbacks as people have moved back to the central city areas. As a center of New York's Tech Valley, the modern Port of Troy has both the charm of an old downtown and the spirit and vitality of the high-tech boom. For example, the high-tech Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute spawns supercomputers and software firms, but its main offices are located in an 18th Century homestead. The Port of Troy's Victorian downtown is picturesque and inspiring, but it is also the base for one of the country's booming gaming software firms.
The Port of Troy has a humid continental climate with large temperature differences between seasons. Summers are warm and can be hot and humid. Winters are cold and can be very cold. Temperatures range from an average high of 22°C (72°F) in July and August to an average low of -5.5°C (22°F) in January. Precipitation is heaviest in the summer from May through August when rainfall reaches over ten centimeters (four inches), and it is lowest from December through February when precipitation falls to five centimeters (below two inches). Humidity levels range from just above 70% in April to 90% in September. Snow comes to the Port of Troy from mid-October to early May and reaches a peak of 43 centimeters (almost 17 inches) in January.
Visitors to the Port of Troy will want to check out the Burden Iron Works Museum to get a quick local history course. The iron works once held the Burden Water Wheel, history's most powerful vertical water wheel and likely inspiration for the Ferris wheel. The office building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972, and the iron works archaeological site was listed in 1977. The office building now houses an exhibit on the Port of Troy's industrial history, containing objects that were made here in the 19th Century. The museum is open on weekdays from 10am to 6pm, although visitors should call first. Tours are available by appointment.
The Port of Troy's Children's Museum of Science and Technology (CMOST), the only museum in the Hudson River Valley, is devoted to kids and their parents. Located in the Rensselaer Technology Park since 2004, the former Junior Museum was recognized by Parents magazine in 2008 as one of the top 20 science centers in the United States. Hours vary by the season but are normally from 10am until 5pm on Thursday through Sunday. In July and August, this Port of Troy museum is open from Monday through Saturday, and there is a $5 admission for the museum and a $1 admission for planetarium shows. The Port of Troy's CMOST boasts hands-on exhibits where kids of all ages can explore science and technology. Exhibits include a Living Indoor Hudson River, weather, natural power, the Hudson River, the Moon Boot, Nano-Tech, and Light, Optics, and Vision. There is a Junior Science Lab and Electron Microscope Experience, the Lally Digital Dome Planetarium, and the Young Explorer Computer Lab.
For over ten years, over 50 producers have gathered at the Port of Troy Waterfront Farmers Market every Saturday to share their creations, enjoy live music and great food, and join families in this festive atmosphere. Vendors include bakers and chefs, growers, and artisans. Offerings include fresh produce, baked goods, condiments and preserves, sweets and sweeteners, flowers and plants, household items, and meat, poultry, and dairy products. Artisans offer wool and knitted goods, pottery, photography, and paper. Shoppers can also choose catered meals at the Port of Troy Waterfront Farmers Market.