Sacred sites open doors for tours

By Conor Mooney

May 19, 2013 Updated May 20, 2013 at 1:26 PM EDT

(WBNG Binghamton) You may have seen them many times from the outside, but have you ever wondered what religious sites in the southern tier look like from the inside? On Sunday, many were able to see for themselves.

Fifteen religious structures opened their doors to the public.

It was all part of an open house weekend sponsored by the Preservation Association of the Southern Tier.

Those curious about architecture were able experience the history of local religion at the sites.

"There is some great architectural treasures out here and it's an opportunity to get in there and see some of them," said David Hawley while taking a tour of St. Paul's Church on Chenango Street.

"The congregations are very excited about having people come to their religious buildings and they're just very welcoming and they love doing it," said Ron Borgna of PAST.

The sites included several churches of different denominations and one synagogue.

There's an opportunity for people who are interested in the architectural aspects, and also some of them are interested in learning a little but more about Judaism, said Carol Herz of Temple Concord on Riverside Drive.

Open houses for sacred sites were held at different locations throughout the state, including Buffalo, Syracuse, Albany and New York City.

The Southern Tier had the second most sites on display after New York City.