GROUP VISITS - AVAILABLE FOR NEXT YEAR (2019)
All group visits for 2018 have already been reserved. Groups may check availability for next year, 2019. To check availability, please email email@example.com with the following information: two group contacts (names, emails, and personal phone numbers), number who plan to attend, transportation plans (no buses permitted), first and second choice dates (closed Sundays), and any Spanish-language tour requests.
INDIVIDUAL VISITS - CHECK AVAILABILITY FOR 2018
Please consider making your visit in 2019 as availability for the remainder of 2018 is limited. Walk-in tour visits are not permitted. Some dates are unavailable. Please check availability for a Monday through Saturday. 1 p.m. tour in advance of planning your travel by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (914) 232-4822 during normal office hours (Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Eastern). Please provide names, transportation plans, place of residence, phone numbers, dates for us to check, and indicate if this is your party's first visit.
HOME & WRITING STUDIO ACCESS & HOURS
To see Bill and Lois Wilson's home and Bill's writing studio, please check availability for a guided tour. If available, tours are Monday through Saturday at 1 p.m. with entry into the Welcome Center beginning at noon. Guided tours are the only means of accessing the historic buildings and are given only by advance reservation.
Historic Home & Writing Studio (reservation required): open only for guided tour guests with advance reservations only for 1 p.m. Monday through Saturday tours (See above information for group visits in 2019 and individual visits in 2018).
Welcome Center (Orientation Display, Shop, & Accessible Restrooms): open before and after the 1 p.m. tours from 12 noon to 1 p.m. and 2-3 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
Garden & Grounds: the outdoor areas are open to individuals Monday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Groups must have advance reservations to visit the property. Group visits may be made for 2019.
RESERVATION SYSTEM / PROCESS
Visiting inside the historic home and studio is only by advance reservation for a guided tour Monday through Saturday at 1 p.m.
Groups are encouraged to call months in advance to secure your desired tour date. Groups of 50 or more can rarely be accommodated and are encouraged to call year's in advance for reservations. Groups may not travel to the neighborhood by bus.
Closed Sundays and Holidays: Unavailable dates include Sundays; Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day (Dec. 25), and New Year's Day (Jan. 1); as well as other dates that can be obtained by contacting Stepping Stones.
Ticketed Event: The Annual Picnic on Sat. June 8, 2019 requires special tickets (see the Event page for ticket launch in April 2019; do not use the form below).
Check tour availability by contacting us by email, phone, or form (below) submission with all contact information (your name, email, phone numbers, address) information, group name, preferred date(s), number in party (include all infants, children, and drivers), and transportation plans. Walk-in reservations are not permitted.
Call during normal office hours, Monday to Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.: (914) 232-4822
Form: Scroll to bottom for form.
Tour Confirmations: You will receive a personal call or email with availability or a confirmation within two business days.
Groups of 10 or more: Groups are encouraged to inquire about availability at least 60 days in advance. We are currently booking groups for 2019. Please provide two organizer names, emails and personal phone numbers; a preferred date and two alternate dates, your transportation plans (vehicle types, dimensions, and quantities, etc.), and number of visitors expected in your party. If the organizers are not coming for the visit, please also provide the name, email, and cell phone number of the visit leader who will be attending.
Only passenger vehicles and regulation size vans are permitted. Passenger vehicles include cars, SUVs, passenger vans (not bus), passenger pickup truck, motorcycle or motorcycle and side car. Restricted from the neighborhood are visitor vehicles longer than 28 feet and wider than 8.5 feet, RVs, campers, coach buses, full-length school buses, double decker buses, large commercial and utility trucks, super-stretch limos, and vehicles with items in tow other than pre-registered special needs scooters and wheelchairs.
Please carpool. Stepping Stones is in a residential neighborhood. As good neighbors, we request that group visitors please carpool where possible and fit four or more to a vehicle.
Run time for daily 1 p.m. tour is typically 60 to 90 minutes depending on the number of questions from visitors. Inform us in advance if you have a time constraint.
Food is not sold on site. Guests may bring food to eat outdoors at three picnic tables. (Grilling and open flames are not permitted). Limited photography is allowed indoors. Please do not picnic or congregate in the parking area.
Rules of the site must be honored by visitors at all times. All visits are at each guest's own risk. Please use caution at all times.
Appropriate footwear for dirt, mud, gravel, and hilly and rocky terrain and changing weather conditions is suggested.
Parking for passenger vehicles is inside the property. Enter the driveway at 62 Oak Road, Katonah, NY 10536 and make a right into a gravel parking lot about 100 feet up the driveway. (No street parking or drop off / pick up of visitors is allowed in the neighborhood.) After parking, take the blacktop path off the special needs parking space past the vegetable garden and through the white trellis then make a right up the driveway to the two-car garage to check in for your tour. When exiting, you will exit out the opposite side of the gravel lot from where you entered and make a left onto Oak Rd., a right on to Lily Pond Lane to get back to Cherry St. Please do not congregate in the parking area and turn off all vehicles promptly.
Groups of certain size and large vehicles may be required to park off site. To determine requirements, a group transportation form must be submitted 60 days in advance of a visit date (shuttle fees may apply). No street parking or drop off / pick up of visitors is allowed in the neighborhood. Restricted vehicles such as coach buses and RVs may not transport (drop-off / pick-up) guests, enter, or park at or around the property; special off-site arrangements can be made by contacting us at least 60 days prior to your visit. We strongly suggest that groups have a sign up list (and, if necessary, a waiting list) and collect the suggested donation ($10/person) in advance.
Out of courtesy for others, please have all drivers refrain from parking, stopping, or unloading along the streets, turning around in nearby driveways, and gathering in or by the street for photos or other purposes. Overnight parking is not permitted.
The driveway and parking area are one-way and 5 mph.
Please help us maintain a quiet and serene atmosphere. Refraining from clapping, yelling, and honking helps us be good neighbors and is a tremendous service. Public address systems and amplified sound are not permitted.
A suggested donation of $10 or more per person is recommended (but not mandatory or required) to help offset operating and preservation costs of the private nonprofit site. Groups may choose to collect donations in advance. Donations can be made by cash, check, or credit card in the Welcome Center. Provide your contact information with your donation to receive an acknowledgement letter for your tax purposes.
To cancel a tour reservation, call and email as far in advance as possible to open opportunities for others and out of courtesy for volunteer tour guides.
Restricted items: drones, cooking equipment, amplification equipment, tents, hammocks, balls, frisbees, skateboards, skis, boomerangs, and snowboards. Recording devices may only be used with advance permission.
If planning a trip from another region and you are unable to take a Monday through Saturday 1:00 p.m. tour due to flight or other travel constraints, please contact us to see if other accommodations can be made.
DIRECTIONS & TRANSPORTATION (see also, vehicle restrictions above)
By Car: Stepping Stones physical address to use in your GPS is 62 Oak Road, Katonah, NY 10536. (Do not select "Oak Drive." That is 20 minutes away.) Please do not turn on to Oak Road directly off of Cherry St. To get to the correct Oak Road segment, take Cherry St. to Woodfield Rd. to 62 Oak Rd. The driveway is 5 mph. Go about 100 feet up the driveway and make a right into a gravel lot and park in designated spaces. When leaving, exit out the other end of the lot and make a left on Oak Rd., a right on Lily Pond Lane and then you will dead end at Cherry St.
By Train from New York City (Manhattan): To make the 1 p.m. tour, please board a Metro North Harlem Line Train to Bedford Hills (or next stop Katonah) between about 10:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. to arrive in this area between about 11:30 a.m. and noon. This allows time for the taxi ride to Stepping Stones. Reserve a cab in advance to ensure availability. Stepping Stones is a 5 minute cab ride away from the Bedford Hills Station (closer) or Katonah train stations on Metro-North Railroad. Both stations are along Metro-North's Harlem Line and Katonah receives more trains each day than Bedford Hills. Board a train bound for "Southeast" ("Southeast" is the name of a station and town; not a train direction) from Grand Central Station (87 E. 42nd Street) or 125th Street and get off at the Bedford Hills (1 Railroad Avenue, Bedford Hills) or Katonah station (70 Katonah Avenue at Jay Street) station. The train ride from NYC usually takes 60 to75 minutes and trains only travel to this area about once per hour. If you are interested in shopping and several dining options in advance or after your tour, we suggest the Katonah Station. If you want the slightly closer station, we suggest the Bedford Hills station.
Click here for the Metro-North Railroad Train schedule (Note: We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the schedule which changes periodically and is altered due to other conditions. We advise checking the schedule close to your trip date.)
By Train from Other Locations: From most other locations outside of New York City, you may decide to take Amtrak to Penn Station in New York City (7th and 8th avenues, between 31st and 33rd streets), and then take a cab, subway, bus, or walk to Grand Central Station and proceed as above.
The quaint villages surrounding both stations offer dining and shopping; Katonah is the larger of the two downtowns and is about 2 miles from Stepping Stones. Bedford Hills Station is about 1 mile away.
Walking Directions: (Walking is not recommended in winter; sidewalks may not be clear of snow and ice and some streets do not have sidewalks.) If walking from Bedford Hills Metro North Train Station, exit the station on the side of the larger parking lot (not the side with the row of shops and the Post Office). Bear left across the parking area and up the hill on Railroad Avenue (less than a block). Make a right onto Route 117. At the first intersection (see gas station on left) bear left uphill (heading North) onto Cherry St. There will be brick Town buildings with parking lots to the left and right as you ascend the base of the hill. Walk about 1/2 mile up Cherry (mostly uphill). Take the third left onto Woodfield Road. If the ground is clear of snow, a short cut is available by bearing left at the unpaved u-shaped dirt driveway ,through the opening in the stone wall, and up the grass hill to the blacktop driveway then to the left to the Welcome Center/two-car garage. If the ground is not clear of snow, continue along the bend in Woodfiled Road until it ends at Oak Rd. Make a left on Oak and another left into the first driveway (62 Oak Rd., Katonah, NY 10536). Please do not stop for photos along the road.
Local Taxi & Car Service Reservations: You are encouraged to arrange for local taxi or car service a day in advance and to confirm the morning of a visit. See cab company phone numbers and rates (quoted Sept. 2015) below. To increase likelihood of a quick pick up at the Katonah or Bedford Hills train stations, call the taxi company again a half hour before your train arrives in this area. Please advise taxi drivers of the following:
• Stepping Stones' Address: 62 Oak Road, Katonah, NY 10536 (Take Cherry St. to Woodfield Rd. to Oak Rd.) (NOTE: Driver should not go to Oak Street or Oak Drive or the other Oak Rd., which is directly off of Cherry St.)
• Driveway is 5 mph and one-way
• Drop off of passengers and stopping at the entrance is not permitted. Drop off is only permitted up the driveway by the two-car garage.
• Exit only by continuing along driveway and by going left out 66 Oak Rd.
Note: Visitors may choose to schedule return trips to the train station only if another ride is determined to be unavailable following the tour.
Sam's Taxi (914) 232-4909 ($6.00 for an individual; $4.00 per person for groups)
Frank's Taxi (914)666-6002 ($4.00 per person)
Bedford Hills Taxi (914) 666-5800 ($6.00 for an individual; add $2.00 for each additional person)
By Automobile: To navigate via GPS, enter 62 Oak Road, Katonah, NY, 10536 as the address. To use a mapping website, follow the Driving Directions link below and enter your starting address. Please DO NOT turn on to OAK ROAD DIRECTLY OFF OF CHERRY STREET because that is the wrong segment of Oak Rd. and a dead end. To reach the correct segment with Stepping Stones, TAKE CHERRY STREET TO WOODFIELD ROAD, THEN MAKE A LEFT ONTO OAK ROAD. (Please note that it is important to SELECT "OAK ROAD" RATHER THAN "OAK STREET" or "OAK DRIVE" on your GPS because you may end up 20 minutes away.)
Highway Travel: Please note that the best exit off the Saw Mill Parkway is exit 39/Bedford Hills/Route 117.
The best exit off of Interstate 684 is exit 6, Katonah, Route 35.
By Air: Westchester County Airport is about 30 minutes from Stepping Stones. Travel to and from greater metro-New York City airports (LaGuardia, Kennedy, Newark, etc.) is common, especially for guests also visiting New York City. Click here for the Westchester County Airport web site.
Nearby Attractions & Accommodations (off site)
Click here for off-site places to stay and places to visit in the area.
Click here for other A.A.-related history sites in the greater New York City metro area.