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Archive for the ‘History’ Category
By GLENN GRIFFITH, CNweekly, link to original post
The president and CEO of the Chamber of Southern Saratoga County joined with representatives of a variety of public and private entities April 29 to open a footbridge over the Erie Canal’s historic Lock 19.
The wooden and steel span allows visitors access to the middle section of the canal’s 1842 historic double lock. More than a dozen private businesses partnered with the Chamber, the town and the Shenendehowa Central School District on the footbridge project. The site, which is in the hamlet of Vischer Ferry, is accessed from Ferry Park, at the end of Ferry Drive.
The idea for the project began with Chamber President Pete Bardunias. In the spring of 2012 he posed the project as a partnership between public and private entities as a way of putting the old lock site back into passive recreational use. The idea expanded from simply clearing brush and debris away to giving private business mentoring to 80 Shen students.
In addition to helping clear the brush, the students formed teams that were mentored by volunteer engineers to compete on a bridge design and its marketing campaign. The final design for the footbridge was chosen last June.
More than 1,700 volunteer hours and tens of thousands of dollars of donated materials and labor went into the construction, which was completed in December. The footbridge project will serve as a template for several more partnership projects on the Chamber’s agenda.
On Monday, representatives from the businesses and the public sector organizations joined Bardunias, Clifton Park Town Supervisor Philip Barrett, Shen Superintendent L. Oliver Robinson and New York State Canal Corporation Director Brian Stratton to officially open the facility for public use.
Click here for a resource on Northern New York Trails: Mainly Jefferson County, NY and surrounding areas – Mountain Biking, Hiking, Trail Walking, Cross-Country Skiing, Camping, Nature Trails/Preserves, Parks with Trails, and Historical Trails
BY STEPHEN WILLIAMS, The Daily Gazette Reporter, link to original post
The Open Space Institute has acquired the historic Marion River canoe carry and 295 surrounding acres in Hamilton County.
There has been concern about preserving access to the canoe carry in recent years, after the owner announced plans to build several homes along Utowana Lake. The acquisition will ensure the carry remains open to the public.
“The potential for development made the Marion River Carry a higher, more immediate priority for conservation,” said Kim Elliman, president and CEO of the private non-profi t land preservation organization.
The OSI is paying $2 million for the land, and hopes it will eventually be acquired by the state to become part of the Forest Preserve, said Katie Petronis, the organization’s land project manager and assistant counsel. “We think that would be the right outcome,” she said.
The purchase includes frontage on Utowana Lake and the roughly half-mile carry, which paddlers have used for more than a century to travel between Utowana Lake and the Marion River, going around rapids. The Marion can then be paddled to Raquette Lake.
Recreation advocates were concerned because of a proposed five-lot subdivision proposed by landowners Dean and Donna Pohl of Raquette Lake that was approved by the Adirondack Park Agency in March 2011.
OSI officials said the acquisition ensures that the carry, as well as hundreds of acres of Adirondack forest, will remain open to the public.
“We just thought the scenic and recreational value couldn’t be overlooked,” Petronis said.
The modern history of the carry goes back to 1899, when great camp developer William West Durant built a rail line along the canoe carry. At 1,320 yards, it was the shortest standard-gauge railroad line in the United States. It operated until 1929, carrying tourist passengers between steamboats and to a country club Durant had in the Blue Mountain Lake area.
Since the railroad closed, the canoe carry has remained an important link in one of the Adirondack Park’s most popular canoe routes. With only the short carry, it’s possible to canoe from Blue Mountain Lake to Indian Lake along a series of lakes and the Marion River.
Private landowners have traditionally permitted the public to use the Marion River Carry. However, recognizing it as an important public recreation resource, the state Department of Environmental Conservation listed the property as a priority acquisition in its 2009 Open Space Plan.
The newly acquired property includes approximately 280 acres of forest lands, three acres of the Marion River and 14.5 acres of Utowana Lake frontage.
The Open Space Institute is fundraising for the $2 million cost of the Marion River Carry property. Anyone interested in contributing can contact Tally Blumberg at (212) 290-8200 ext. 228 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Land Trust has acquired a 13.5-acre parcel located near the summit of Bare Hill – an iconic landmark on the east side of Canandaigua Lake. The property is located on Van Epps
Road in the Town of Middlesex, Yates County – adjacent to the entrance to New York State’s Bare Hill Unique Area. (Go hike this unique hill using the guidebook “Take A Hike – Family Walks in New York’s Finger Lakes Region.”)
The Land Trust identified the parcel as a priority for protection due to its location near the summit of the hill and next to the primary entrance to the State Unique Area. The organization intends to sell the property to the State as an addition to the Unique Area at some point in the future when funds are available. The property is entirely forested with a mix of oak-hickory forest and planted conifers.
Bare Hill is well known in the area as the scenic ridge that rises 865 feet above Canandaigua Lake’s eastern shore just north of Vine Valley. Old photos show that the area was indeed “bare” in the past but today it is largely forested, except for its summit which is covered with a mix of meadows and shrub lands. One Seneca legend has it that the writhing of a great serpent swept the hill of its trees and bushes until it was bare. Whatever the cause, Bare Hill is notable for its shallow soils that are susceptible to drought stress most summers.
The Land Trust was able to take advantage of this opportunity through a generous donation of funds from an anonymous donor who cares deeply about the future of Canandaigua Lake and its surrounding rural landscapes. This is the second project the Land Trust has completed at Bare Hill. In 2007, the organization worked in partnership with the Town of Gorham and the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation to acquire a 95-acre parcel on Bare Hill’s northern flank.
Elsewhere in the Canandaigua Lake Watershed, the Land Trust worked with partners to complete five other land protection projects during 2012: the protection of two farms in Canandaigua and a hillside meadow in South Bristol through the use of conservation easements (perpetual legal agreements that limit development while allowing the land to remain in private ownership); the acquisition of streamside wetlands in partnership with the Town of Canandaigua, and the acquisition of a 32-acre addition to the organization’s Great Hill Nature Preserve in the Town of Italy, Yates County.
source: FLLT web site
The Erie Canal Discovery Center (24 Church Street Lockport, NY 14094) is pleased to announce a new series of weekly documentary movies, “Movies and Popcorn” to be shown every Saturday morning this winter at 11 a.m. beginning Dec. 15.
These full-length features will include several award-winning productions from around WNY as well as other documentaries and travelogues prepared by National Geographic and PBS.
The first film in the series is entitled, “Celebrate Niagara-USA,” a feature film produced by Trellis Marketing of Buffalo which aired this summer on local broadcast stations. This fascinating video includes segments of over a dozen local tourist and cultural attractions around Niagara County, including the Erie Canal Discovery Center and the Lockport Cave and Underground Boat Ride in Lockport.
“If you didn’t get a chance to see this film on TV, this would be a good opportunity to see the show, and we’ll even throw in the popcorn for your enjoyment,” said Discovery Center Director Douglas Farley.
The schedule of upcoming Saturday matinees includes:
• Dec. 22 “WNY from A to Z,” a local travelogue by WNED
• Dec. 29 “Lockport Old Home Week Parade,” the complete 2010 centennial parade by LCTV
• Jan. 5 “Lockport Remembers 180 Years of History,” filmed in Lockport in 2008 by Low Bridge Productions
• Jan. 12 “Lock-Tide,” the story of how boats travel uphill by Low Bridge Productions
Additional new films will continue throughout the winter months. Admission to these feature films is included in Erie Canal Discovery Center general admission of $6 adults, $5 seniors and $4 students.
Reservations, though not required, are encouraged and can be made by calling 716-439-0431.
Ready to get out and go this winter? Here are 10 good reasons to visit the Great Lakes Seaway Trail National Scenic Byway along 518 miles of freshwater shoreline in New York and Pennsylvania.
· Quiet season walking experiences
· The snow!
· Spectacular photo opps
· Winter War of 1812 history
· Ice fishing
· Lighthouses lovely in winter
· To be inspired to quilt the Beauty of the Byways
· Only-here winter birdwatching
· Winter Wine Weekends
· Indoor-outdoor events, shopping and festivals
Find details on 50 festive, fun and fresh reasons to visit the Great Lakes Seaway Trail National Scenic Byway this winter, go to www.seawaytrail.com/winter.