Beacon is a city in Dutchess County, New York located roughly halfway between New York City and Albany. Beacon has become very popular in recent years among tourists for its picturesque setting along the Hudson River and its quaint charm.
Beacon is part of the Poughkeepsie–Newburgh–Middletown, New York Metropolitan Statistical Area as well as the larger New York–Newark–Bridgeport, New York–New Jersey–Connecticut–Pennsylvania Combined Statistical Area. It was named to commemorate the historic beacon fires that blazed forth from the summit of the Fishkill Mountains to alert the Continental Army about British troop movements. Originally an industrial city along the Hudson, Beacon experienced a revival beginning in 2003 with the arrival of Dia:Beacon, one of the largest modern art museums in the United States. Recent growth has generated debates on development and zoning issues . The area known as Beacon was settled by Europeans as the villages of Matteawan and Fishkill Landing in 1709. They were among the first colonial communities in the county. Beacon is located in the southwest corner of Dutchess County in the Mid-Hudson Region, approximately 90 miles (140 km) south of Albany, and approximately 60 miles (97 km) north of New York City.