Greece, New York is located in Monroe County and is five miles northwest of Rochester and sixty-four miles east of Buffalo. It is roughly forty square miles in size. Its northern most border runs along the shores of Lake Ontario. The town benefits from easy access to the City of Rochester and surrounding towns in the Rochester metropolitan area. As of the 2020 United States census, the town has a total population of 96, 231.
The Town of Greece was originally called Northampton and was part of the Town of Gates until being established independently by the New York State Legislature on March 22, 1822. Its name was chosen because of the then current wave of sympathy toward the Greeks who were fighting for their independence from Turkish rule at the time.. The central Town seat was named Charlotte (pronounced “Shar-lot”) for the daughter of Lieutenant Colonel Robert Troup; the land agent for an English estate which owned much of western New York at the time. Charlotte itself was incorporated as a village in 1869, and was part of Greece until 1916 when it was annexed to the City of Rochester as the 23rd Ward.
The official flag of the Town of Greece was adopted at a meeting of the Town Council on August 17, 1954. Centered in a field of white is a circular emblem designed by J. S. Perticone depicting the old lighthouse at the mouth of the Genesee River, which was built in 1822; the same year the Town was established. The circle represents the shield of the warriors of Ancient Greece and the border is a characteristic Greek artistic design. Lightning flashes symbolize energy and strength and the colors – terra cotta, golden yellow and black – are those used in old Greek pottery and artistic decorations.
Agriculture would remain the dominant enterprise in Greece until the twentieth century when Eastman Kodak Company became the major industrial employer in the region. The Town experienced rapid growth following World War II and now boasts a population of roughly 96,000. The character of Greece today is of a residential suburb with modern industry and commerce.
Form of Government
The Town is a suburban Town of the first-class and was organized on March 22, 1822. The Greece Central School District, Spencerport Central School District and Hilton School District serve the Town and rely upon their own taxing powers granted by New York State to raise revenues.
The Supervisor of the Town is the presiding member of the Town Board and is elected for up to three successive four-year terms. In addition to the Town Supervisor, there are four members of the Greece Town Board who are elected for two year terms with term limits of five consecutive two-year terms. The Supervisor is elected by the residents of Greece and each council member is elected from one of four districts.
The Town appoints its Town Clerk, Commissioner of Public Works and Town Attorney. The Tax Receiver is an elected official who serves a four-year term.
Topography & Climate
The Town’s 41.78 square miles of land area is located along eight miles of Lake Ontario’s south shore and is bordered on the east by the City of Rochester, through which runs the Genesee River. The topography of the Town of Greece is similar to many regions in western New York whose myriad of streams and ridges were carved out of the land by the glacial mass during the last Ice Age.
The Town’s main topographical feature is “the Ridge,” which runs east to west through its southern portion. A natural roadway for the native population of the region, it would later become the “Honeymoon Trail” for countless couples on their way to Niagara Falls. North of the Ridge lies flatland leading up to Lake Ontario, along the shores of which lie many sandy beaches, wetlands and numerous bays and ponds; all supporting an abundance of waterfowl and other wildlife. South of the Ridge, the land rolls gently to the New York State Barge Canal, one of the great engineering feats of the early nineteenth century, and then southward into the Genesee Valley.
Like the early days of American expansion, the Town’s development is from east to west. Commercial and residential development is concentrated in the east and south, while the west remains mainly undeveloped, consisting of farmland and dense woodlands. The industrial park of Eastman Kodak Company is located along the southern portion of the Town.
The location of the Town of Greece provides it with weather patterns of great seasonal contrast. Cold snowy winters, cool rainy springs, hot summers and a long rainy autumn are characteristic of the climate of Western New York. These weather patterns are the creation of a unique blend of conditions resulting from the proximity of the Great Lakes to the Town’s location. These “lake effects” have a profound impact upon the weather.
Greece has its own community activity facility called The Center; located on the Town Hall campus. This two-story structure is approximately 45,000 sq. ft. The Center features a 7,800 sq. ft. gymnasium, senior citizen’s lounge, 4,530 sq. ft. multi-purpose room, art room, dance/activity room, programmed fitness area and walking track. The Center is currently experiencing a 40,000 sq. ft. expansion and renovation of the space, which will eventually include a new gym, elevated walking track, programming and community rooms and other features.
Deer, waterfowl and small game are hunted in the town. Shotgun (bird shot only) and bow hunting are restricted to specific areas. For more information on how to obtain a hunting license, please click here.
The Greece Public Library is part of the Monroe County Library System and receives more than 500,000 visits annually. A new main library facility was completed in 2000 and provides 42,000 square feet of space for books, computers, literacy programming and other media used by the library patrons and residents. In 2021, The Greece Public Library opened an award winning expansion of its Children’s Library, called the Story Garden. The 10,000 sq. ft. expansion contains many contemporary active literacy and play features as well as increased programming and materials space.
The Town maintains seventeen park areas containing 764 acres of land. Of this, only 189 acres are currently developed, with the remaining lands to be used for passive recreation. Located within these 189 acres are thirteen baseball diamonds, ten soccer fields, three combination football/soccer fields, eight basketball courts, twenty tennis courts, two volleyball courts sixteen playgrounds, a skate park, two disc golf courses (1 18-hole and 1 9-hole), and several nature trails. Between 2014 and 2022, the Town constructed and installed a covered entertainment pavilion, family water spray park, ADA-compliant and wheelchair-accessible playground, outdoor exercise equipment, pickleball courts and ice-skating rink on the Town campus.
The large expanse of undeveloped land and the more than eight miles of shoreline along Lake Ontario is a natural habitat for many forms of wildlife. This abundance of natural land area provides many recreational opportunities for the residents of Greece. Several bike trails are located within the Town, as well as trails along the New York State Erie Canal (formerly the Barge Canal) maintained by New York State. The Town’s bike trail stretches from the Canal to Lake Ontario. Access can be obtained from Henpeck Park on Ridgeway Avenue & Elmgrove Road as well as Basil Marella Park located at 975 English Road.