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With Erie Canal navigation season underway, Fairport celebrating $1.3M in waterfront improvements

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NYS Canal Corporation
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Local and state officials gathered Friday, May 20, 2022 to celebrate the opening of this year's navigation season on the Erie Canal and to mark the $1.3 million in improvements along the canal in the Village of Fairport

With Memorial Day weekend coming up, it’s likely there will be a lot of boaters out on the state’s Erie Canal System, and last Friday, officials celebrating the opening of the 2022 navigation season on the canal with a celebration in the Village of Fairport.

Those ceremonies marked the bicentennial of the Erie Canal opening to navigation in eastern Monroe County through what is now Fairport.

Officials on Friday marked $1.3 million in improvements along the canal in that village.

Those improvements include new docks, lighting and a new boat launch. Governor Kathy Hochul issued a statement calling the Erie Canal “an integral part of New York’s history,” and said it is a hub of recreation and tourism in local communities along the canalway.

The improvements include funding from New York state and the NYS Canal Corp.

The canal system is owned by the New York Power Authority and a spokesman for that agency, Shane Mahar, said that they are expecting another busy year along the canal throughout the state.

“We’re hearing from boaters, we think we’ll have more out there this year on the canal system,” said Mahar. “We’re hearing that a lot of folks are eager to get out and travel, hopefully safely. And there are no recreational fees or tolls again this year on the canal system.”

Mahar noted that fees have been dropped for navigation on the canal the last couple of years.