Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor Visitor Research Report
has released results from a recently-commissioned study about current and prospective visitors to the 500-mile Canalway Corridor.
The information is intended to help tourism promoters, businesses and heritage sites better attract and serve visitors, including boaters, cyclists, sightseers and vacationers.
More than 1,000 people participated in online surveys and 20 provided interviews conducted by Rochester-based Level 7 Market Research on behalf of the National Heritage Corridor. Visitors and prospective visitors who live near the canal system, as well as those from other parts of New York and neighboring states, participated.
Among the findings:
Recent and prospective visitors were drawn to the history of the area and to exploring local canal communities; boat tours/boating and attending festivals/events are major draws among prospective visitors.
- Recent canal visitors tend to be older, travel in smaller parties, and have higher income households compared with prospective visitors. Most are savvy travelers who are three times more likely to travel internationally.
- Lack of awareness and knowledge are among the greatest barriers to visiting.
The research was funded by a grant from Market NY through I LOVE NY, New York State’s Division of Tourism, as a part of the State’s Regional Economic Development Council initiative.
To view the entire report Click Here
New York State Canal Conference / Save The Date
200 Years On The Erie Canal Lecture Series
Michael Barrett of the Hudson Mohawk Industrial Gateway will be presenting a talk on the anniversary of one of New York States – and America’s – cultural and historic landmarks, the Erie Canal. Join us as he takes us on a journey through the 200 years of the canal, from its construction begun on July 4, 1817, to its impact on the state and country since it official opening with the Wedding of the Waters in 1825. With a fantastic speaker, this will be a great opportunity to hear some fascinating details of the canal that helped to shape many of the local communities.
The lecture will begin at 7pm at the Van Schaick Island Country Club, but you’re welcome to come earlier and take advantage of the delicious food available for purchase at the club (not included in admission price).
Admission: $6 not-yet members $ 5 museum members
The Erie Canal And The Birth Of American Religion
SCHEDULED FOR SATURDAY, DECEMBER 16 at 1:00 PM
THE ERIE CANAL AND THE BIRTH OF AMERICAN RELIGION
Brent Rodriguez-Plate explores the religious life established by the Erie Canal, and the ways it influenced religiosity across the continent, and across the globe. Within 25 years of its opening, the Erie Canal cultivated extraordinary experimental spiritual groups including the Mormons, the Adventists, Spiritualism, a revived Apocalypticism, utopian communal societies such as the Oneida Community, with the Amana Colony and Shakers passing through, as well as the emotion-laden revivals of the Second Great Awakening. The Canal also engendered the religiously infused social movements of abolition, women’s suffrage, and temperance. And because of its key location and function as the link between East and West, the repercussions of canal-formed spiritual experiments rippled across the continent with westward expansion, creating unique currents of religion in the United States into the present day.
Brent Rodriguez-Plate’s teachings and writings explore relations between sensual life and spiritual life. He is a writer, editor, public speaker, and visiting associate professor of religious studies at Hamilton College. He has authored or edited fifteen books, and his writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The Christian Century, The Islamic Monthly, America, Los Angeles Review of Books, Religion Dispatches, and other places.
This program takes place in the center’s main gallery on Saturday, December 16 starting at 1:00 PM.
The Oneida County History Center, formerly the Oneida County Historical Society, is a private 501(c) (3) not-for-profit educational institution and is dedicated to preserving history and promoting the culture of the Greater Mohawk Valley. Admission to this program is free for the general public; donations are encouraged. Please contact the center at 315-735-3642 or visit the OCHC website (www.oneidacountyhistory.org) or Facebook.com page for additional information.
Seneca Falls NY finds itself at the crossroads of the Finger Lakes region. Located between Seneca and Cayuga lakes, Seneca Falls also finds itself at the crossroads of History. The Women’s Rights movement was founded in Seneca Falls in 1948, that world changing event is celebrated every day at the Women’s Rights National Historical Park. The Wesleyan chapel the scene of that first convention has been restored and visitors to the Historical Park can learn about those events every day.
Seneca Falls also finds itself as the home of the Women’s Hall of Fame, the new headquarters for that venue will be open in 2018 in the restored Seneca Knitting Mills building located directly on the Erie Canal.
The Seneca Falls Heritage Area interprets the village’s development and role in the Reform Movements of the 19th. century. The area features a classic main street, a well-appointed harbor on The Cayuga-Seneca Canal, as well as many historic homes and architecturally interesting neighborhoods. The Heritage Area’s visitor center serves as an orientation point for local and regional history, providing an historical overview and information on various area attractions.
The Seneca Museum of Waterways & Industry is located at 89 Fall Street in the middle of historic downtown Seneca Falls and serves as a point of interest for local and regional history. The Museum provides a historical overview illustrating how the Seneca River and the Cayuga-Seneca Canal powered the rise of industry and fostered cultural development.
History continues at the Historical Society Museum located at 55 Cayuga Street in Seneca Falls in a home with long and varied history. The original structure was built in 1823 as a one room wooden house. Edward Mynderse son of the early land developer Colonel Wilhelmus Mynderse erected a two-story brick structure around 1855 on the site. The Historical Society bought the building in 1961 and the house you see today has undergone no major changes since the 1880’s
Frank J. Ludovico Sculpture Trail lies along the south side of the Cayuga-Seneca Canal leading west along the Canal from the village. The Trail’s Visitors and Arts Center is located at 61 Ovid Street, Route 414 in Seneca Falls.
Seneca Falls is also rumored to have been the inspiration for Frank Capra’s Classic movie it’s a wonderful life. Frank Capra was thought to have spent time in Seneca Falls prior to the production of the movie, a visitor to the town can identify many venues similar to those in the movie. Seneca Falls celebrates the movie with a celebration during early December each year. The It’s a Wonderful Life Museum is in downtown Seneca Falls, for more information visit their web site at www.therealbedrordfalls.com
One of the most photographed venues in Seneca Falls is the Trinity Episcopal Church. Built in 1885 in the Anglo-Gothic style. It is famous for its rising tower and stained glass some of which were made by the Louis Tiffany Studios. The Church is located at 27 Fall Street along the western end of Van Cleef Lake.
The Elizabeth Cady Stanton House, home of the women’s rights leader, is open for guided tours by the National Service Rangers.
Seneca Falls offers visitors of all kinds a complete experience, whether you arrive by boat and utilize any of the more than 900’ of docking space, equipped with electrical, water, Wi-Fi and a boater amenities center which includes bathrooms, lounge, showers and laundry all available to the boater for FREE, bicyclists and hikers can enjoy the same level of experience and they travel through Seneca Falls,
Seneca Falls surrounded by more than 70 wineries connects to the Seneca Lake Wine Trail, Cayuga Lake Wine Trail, the Kueka Lake Wine Trail as well as the Canandaigua Lake Wine Trail.
For a visitor Seneca Falls enjoys many restaurants, hotels/motels, bed & breakfasts as well as historical sites and museums some of which are highlighted above.
World Canal Conference Public Event Days
Join Canal NY during the Public Event Days at the World Canals Conference at the Inner Harbor of Syracuse on Sunday Sept. 24th from 1pm. – 6pm. Through the generosity of Erie Canalway Canal NY will be attending the event with our Discover the Erie Canal display. As always we will be promoting the Erie Canal and the membership of Canal NY throughout the conference.
For more information on World Canals Conference visit their web site at http://wcc2017syracuse.com/publicevents/
All events at the Syracuse Inner Harbor except where noted.
- Tour replica 1862 canal schooner Lois McClure.
- Row a traditional six-oar long boat built at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum.
- Watch live hot glass shows presented by the Corning Museum of Glass GlassBarge.
- Try paddling! Free kayak lessons & demonstrations.
- Tour Onondaga Lake by boat from the Honeywell Visitor Center.
- Cycle to the Inner Harbor with Tour the Towpath as it completes its two-day tour from Rome to Syracuse. Meet at the Old Erie Canal State Park trailhead in DeWitt (5100 Butternut Drive) at 1pm for a guided ride through Syracuse. Visit the Erie Canal Museum along the way.
- Sample Taste NY specialty foods and food trucks, including The Chicken Bandit, Toss ‘n’ Fire Wood-Fired Pizza, PB&J Lunchbox, and Frost Bite Show Cream Shavery.
- Visit the Freight House for exhibits and displays.
- Reel in a carp with the Wild Carp Club and observe live fish from Onondaga Lake displayed by students from the State University of New York School of Environmental Science and Forestry.
- Sample local brews- Delegate Craft Brew Tasting, Aloft Syracuse Inner Harbor, 3-6pm (conference registrants only)
- “Doors Open” at Museums & Galleries, Downtown Syracuse, 1-5 pm, Experience dynamic cultural institutions, including the Erie Canal Museum, Everson Museum of Art, and Onondaga Historical Association.
- Water Way Youth Video Exhibition, Everson Museum of Art, Outdoor Exhibition Venue, 7:20 pm- Enjoy the premier screening of 1-3 minute short films focusing on canal life and culture through the eyes, experience and imagination of young people from Scotland, Belgium, Italy and New York State. Projections will be shown each night from September 24-28.
- Canal Crossings Street Murals- Head to E. Water Street by the Erie Canal Museum for the opening Block Party of a contemporary public art project that celebrates the historic Erie Canal and brings tribute to the lasting effect the canal has had in Central New York.
A Great Lineup of Music at the Inner Harbor:
- 1:00-2:45pm The Sim Redmond Band
- 3:15-4:15pm The Measure
- 4:45-5:45pm Damn Dog
Free shuttles will be available to conference attendees, with stops at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown, along the Creek Walk, the Honeywell Visitor’s Center on the lake, and Syracuse Inner Harbor.
Boating on the Erie Canal
Boating on the Erie Canal
Post courtesy of the www.newyorkboater.com
Whether you’re in a kayak, 50’ cruiser or anything in-between you will find a unique boating experience on the Erie Canal. With 55 locks, 16 lift bridges, more than 60 communities all on the 524 miles of navigable waterway that make up the Erie Canal System. A boat trip on the Erie is something you won’t soon forget. Whether you plan your trip to last a day, week or month the Erie will not disappoint.
The NYS Canal system is best understood when you break it down by regions. The Erie at 363 miles long stretches from Waterford, just north of Albany to The Tonawanda’s, just east of Buffalo. The modern version of the Erie which celebrated its centennial in 1915 combines the natural river sections of the Mohawk and Seneca Rivers, crosses Oneida Lake, the largest lake completely within NYS as well as the man-made sections that complete the system. The scenery that you encounter along the way is as diverse as the waterway itself. From dairy farms and apple orchids to long stretches of natural scenery that could make you forget you’re in New York State. You will also pass through bedroom communities of cities like Syracuse and Rochester. One of the more interesting sections is a 4-mile-long stretch west of Rochester where the Canal is cut through rock, with rock walls on both sides of the canal, take a minute to consider how this section was built virtually by hand in the early 1800’s! When you arrive in Tonawanda, the current western terminus of the Canal, rent a car and visit Niagara Falls, or continue on the Niagara River 13 miles to the inner harbor of Buffalo where you have the opportunity to dock directly behind a Naval Destroyer at the only inland Naval Museum in the country.
From the Erie Canal, you also have the opportunity to head north to Lake Ontario via the Oswego Canal, At Three Rivers, mile marker 160 the Oswego Canal heads north for 23 miles. Don’t miss a stay in the village of Phoenix where undoubtable you will get a visit from the Bridge House Brats, a local youth group who spends their summers helping boaters with everything from catching your lines to running for provisions. Oswego at the mouth of Lake Ontario hosts one of the largest celebrations of the summer with its annual Harbor Fest.
Travel a little further west and at mile marker 200 on the Erie you can head south on the Cayuga / Seneca Canal. When you exit Lock 1, 4 miles south of the junction with the Erie, Cayuga Lake lies ahead, 36 miles to the south is the City of Ithaca, or head west to the historic town of Seneca Falls, birthplace of the women’s suffrage movement. Seneca Falls is one of the best stops along the Canal for boaters, with over 900’ of dockage on both the north and south sides of the Canal, boaters can enjoy free docking, electric, water, wi-fi and a boaters amenity center that offers laundry, showers, a lounge. An easy walk offers boaters access to restaurants, shops, and museums. Rent a car and tour the many wineries that surround the Finger lakes. The Cayuga / Seneca Canal continues west past the village of Waterloo, the birthplace of the memorial day celebration and eventually empties into the north end of Seneca Lake at the city of Geneva. Head south 34 miles for a visit to Watkins Glen.
The Champlain Canal which travels north from the Village of Waterford and the Hudson River follows some of the same waterways that were critical in the Revolutionary war, with historical sites located throughout the 60-mile length. The Champlain offers the scenery of the Adirondack mountains to the west and the Green Mountains of Vermont to the East. Continue to Lake Champlain and north to Canada and beyond.
No matter how you choose to boat on the Erie Canal system, you won’t be disappointed. More than 60 communities offer docking opportunities to transient boaters, most offering amenities such as electric, internet access, showers and restrooms and access to these communities. Most them are FREE.
There are three ways to boat the canal, you can use your own boat and of course depending on where your home port is will determine where you enter the canal system from. If you trailer your boat, you have a lot more options. With over 150 boat ramps and more than 100 marinas and public docks on the Canal System there are lots of options for your trip. If your boat has sleeping accommodations, your options have greatly increased, if not, or if you’re paddling the canal, you can stay at any of the B&B’s or hotels or campgrounds along the Canal. If roughing it is your desire you can dry camp for free at every one of the 57 locks along the Canal system.
The third way to enjoy the Canal System by water is to charter a boat. There are several companies along the Canal System that will rent you a boat for as little as 3 days. These options vary from a 22’ cruiser perfect for a couple to several companies which rent European Style Canal boats in sizes from 32-42 such as the one below from Mid lakes Navigation’ or how about doing a family reunion on a 60’ house boat which accommodates 14. No matter which option works for you, a trip on the Canal is a must for any NY Boater. In 2015 Lyons NY, at mile marker 220 of the Erie hosted 331 boats from 216 communities in 40 states and from Canada, Holland, Australia, England, Germany, Sweden, New Zealand, Ireland, Mexico, and South America. Start experiencing what boaters from around the country and world are finding out. In 2017 the Canal System begins the celebration of the bi-centennial of the beginning of the construction of the Canal. Also in 2017 The World Canals Conference is coming to Syracuse from Sept. 25th to the 29th.
The NYS Canal system is the oldest continually operating transportation system in North America, and every year the navigation system begins in Early May and closes during the middle of November. A common message you will hear from boaters enjoying the Canal, is quiet!, don’t spread the word. those who already are in the know really want to keep it a closely guarded secret.
A boat trip on the Erie Canal, may be the best deal in cruising around! Continue to watch the New York Boater for more information as the NYS Canal system begins their bi-centennial celebration starting in 2017
Historic Palmyra’s Pirate Weekend Aug. 11th & 12th!
Historic Palmyra’s Pirate Weekend is all set for Friday & Saturday August 11th & 12th. The Pirates of the Erie Canal invade the Port of Palmyra Marina and other venues throughout the Village of Palmyra, bearing a boatload of fun for all ages. A full weekend of adventure and action is planned including: FREE Movie in the park on Friday night at Dusk. (Princess Bride…new for this year!!!) On Saturday, a Pirate Regatta Bed Race, Pirate & Kazoo Band Parade, Painted windows along Main St., BIG Vehicles to climb, Chicken BBQ, Canal Boat Rides, Dunking booth, Old time photos, (We’ll let you borrow pirate gear if you don’t have any!) Vendors and Artisans. Puppy Parade, Historic Palmyra Museums and Walking tours, pirate tales, live music, food, and artisan vendors, children’s games, Healthy Living Treasure Hunt’ Jolly Roger 5K race (to benefit Pal-Mac Select Choir!) and much more. Dress Like A Pirate and join the parade!! Don’t forget to bring home some swag from the Pirates Bazaar, a sidewalk sales extravaganza from Palmyra’s Main Street merchants. Pre-Built pirate beds available to borrow for the bed-race-teams of 5, age 16 years and older please. Visit www.eriecanalpirates.com for details and complete schedule of call William Unterborn at (585)368-8081
Palmyra NY Harbor Hosts
Welcome to Palmyra! That is the message of the Palmyra Harbor Hosts to visitors who tie up at the Port of Palmyra on the Erie Canal. Now in their fifth year , the Harbor Hosts (HH), volunteers from Palmyra and Macedon, have worked with hundreds of visitors from all over the state, the country and the world, answering questions and, frequently, going above and beyond providing needed transportation.
HH have given visitors rides to Walmart for a variety of needs; gone in search of a specific kind of worm to catch a specific kind of fish; to Rite Aid for an Rx refill or to an animal hospital. They have provided directions to the library, a children’s playground, grocery store, Chill ‘n’ Grill ice cream shop and the laundromat. HH know which restaurants deliver to the marina; the hours of the museums – Palmyra has six. They know what time the adjacent rest rooms open and close and much more. Palmyra HH know just about all there is to know about our small but beautiful and historic village (200+ properties on the National Register) and they love to share that information with our visitors. The New York State Canal Corporation named the Palmyra Harbor Hosts New York State Canal Ambassadors in recognition of their service to the Village of Palmyra and New York State. We are proud of that.