Erie Canal closed Wednesday night after 197th season

Provided photo: Katie Oakes sent in this photo she took last week of the Erie Canal in Medina.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 14 October 2021 at 9:06 am

The Erie Canal closed to boaters on Wednesday evening, ending the 197th navigation season on the historic waterway.

The season started on May 21 and was more normal than 2020. Covid restrictions delayed the start of the season last year until June 26. The start was pushed back because canal staff and construction crews were sidelined early in the pandemic. That prevented the State Canal Corp. from doing some of the work needed before the canals could be opened.

The Canal Corp. this year didn’t charge any tolls or fees for recreational use of the canal system. This is the fifth straight year the tolls have been waived. Those tolls are normally $25 to $100 for a season pass, depending on the size of the vessel.