Erie Canal closes to boaters on Wednesday at 5 p.m.

Photo by Tom Rivers: A crew from Russia reached Orleans County on Aug. 7 as part of an epic journey in an 18th century replica boat named Pilgrim. The Densmore Road bridge is in the background in this photo in Albion. Sergey Sinelnik is the captain and has long dreamed of sailing around the world. He led the crew to Duluth, Minnesota. Duluth is the sister city of his Russian hometown.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 13 October 2020 at 8:24 am

The Erie Canal, which opened late this year due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, will close to boaters at 5 p.m. on Wednesday. This will conclude the 196th annual navigational season on the historic waterway.

All recreational and commercial vessel operators should exit the canal by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, the State Canal Corp. said in a notice.

The closure on Oct. 14 will allow Canal Corp. workers and contractors to begin working on a backlog of maintenance projects that were deferred earlier this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic while the weather is favorable, The Canal Corp. said.

The organization is pushing to complete projects ahead of the 2021 season, which is currently scheduled to begin in May barring any unforeseen circumstances.

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