NY Canal System photo contest shows beauty, splendor of a great resource (see winners)



WATERFORD, NY – The winners of the 15th Annual Erie Canalway Photo Contest have been chosen from more than 435 entries.

The winning images, which represent the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor, will be featured in the 2021 Erie Canalway calendar, which will be available for free at libraries, visitor centers and by request beginning in December.

“These remarkable images remind us that the NYS Canal System remains a symbol of strength for our communities, providing a distinct sense of place and pride in where we live, work and play. We are delighted to share them widely,” said Bob Radliff, executive director of the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor, which sponsored the contest.

Brian U. Stratton, director of the New York State Canal Corporation, added, “As New Yorkers, we are lucky—it’s easy to take for granted the natural beauty around every corner.

“The Erie Canalway’s annual photo contest gives us an opportunity to see our waterway’s iconic infrastructure through the eyes of others and appreciate its beauty,” he said “The amateur photographers who captured these images offer a glimpse into the past, present and future of the canal and remind us just how fortunate we are to have an amenity like this at our fingertips.”

The top three photos were chosen in four categories (Classic Canal, Canal Communities, Along the Trail and On the Water) and will be shown in the calendar. In addition, 12 other photos received honorable mention.

2020 Erie Canalway Photo Contest Winners

Classic Canal

1st Place, Upper Hudson Sunrise (Northumberland) by Susan Meyer, Schuylerville, NY

2nd Place, Trestle in Winter (Lockport) by Jeff Tracy, Lockport, NY

3rd Place, Autumn Glory (Waterloo) by Robert Klick, Amherst, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

1st place in Classic Canal category:
“Upper Hudson Sunrise” (Northumberland) by Susan Meyer, Schuylerville, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

2nd place in Classic Canal category:
“Mohawk Valley Gateway Overlook Bridge “(Amsterdam) by Frank Forte, Little Falls, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

3rd Place in Classic Canal category:
“Autumn Glory” (Waterloo) by Robert Klick, Amherst, NY

Canal Communities

1st Place, Iconic Flight (Lockport) by Alan Schwartz, Rochester, NY

2nd Place, Mohawk Valley Gateway Overlook Bridge (Amsterdam) by Frank Forte, Little Falls, NY

3rd Place, Buck Moon Over Brockport (Brockport) by Kyle Preston, Brockport, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

Ist place Canal Communities category: “Iconic Flight” (Lockport) by Alan Schwartz, Rochester, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

2nd place Canal Communities category: “Mohawk Valley Gateway Overlook Bridge “(Amsterdam) by Frank Forte, Little Falls, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

3rd place Canal Communities category:
“Buck Moon Over Brockport” (Brockport) by Kyle Preston, Brockport, NY

Along the Trail

1st Place, Butternut Creek Aqueduct (DeWitt) by A.T. McLean, Syracuse, NY

2nd Place, Sunrise on the Path (Medina) by Cory Pawlaczyk, Medina, NY

3rd Place, Evening Reflection (Spencerport) by Joe Pompili, Spencerport, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

1st place in Along the Trail category: “Butternut Creek Aqueduct” (DeWitt) by A.T. McLean, Syracuse, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

2nd place in Along the Trail category: “Sunrise on the Path” (Medina) by Cory Pawlaczyk, Medina, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

3rd place in Along the Trail category: “Evening Reflection” (Spencerport) by Joe Pompili, Spencerport, NY

On the Water

1st Place, Sam Patch at Schoen Place (Pittsford) by Kevin Tubiolo, Rochester, NY (See photo at top story)

2nd Place, Sunset Over Lock 7 (Niskayuna) by Sean Sullivan, Niskayuna, NY

3rd Place, Sunset in Waterford Harbor (Waterford) by Deana Breen, Waterford, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

2nd place in On the Water Category: “Sunset Over Lock 7” (Niskayuna) by Sean Sullivan, Niskayuna, NY

2020 Erie Canalway photo contest

3rd place in On the Water category: “Sunset in Waterford Harbor (Waterford) by Deana Breen, Waterford, NY

Honorable Mention Recipients (listed west to east). See photo gallery of all honorable mention recipients on the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor website.

Over the Bridge (North Tonawanda) by Neil Ferguson, North Tonawanda, NY

Tug DeWitt Clinton Settles in to Fall (Adams Basin) by Susan Starkweather Miller, Albion, NY

Bridge of Tranquility (Adams Basin) by Joe Pompili, Spencerport, NY

Waves on the Shore of the Erie Canal (Baldwinsville) by Catherine Klapheke, Baldwinsville, NY

Verona Beach Camping (Sylvan Beach) by David Weinberger, Lawrence, NY

Winter on the Canal (Sylvan Beach) by Jaysree Whitelaw, Blossvale, NY

Enjoying Life on the Erie (St. Johnsville) by Terry Potoczny, Fort Plain, NY

Samuel Sweet Canal Store (Amsterdam / Port Jackson) by Wesley Merritt, Clifton Park, NY

Lock 9 at Night (Rotterdam Junction) by Wesley Merritt, Clifton Park, NY

The Falls (Vischer Ferry) bya Stefanie Obkirchner, Amsterdam, NY

Dramatic Upper Hudson Sunrise (Northumberland, Champlain Canal) by Susan Meyer, Schuylerville, NY

Heading North (Comstock, Champlain Canal) by Frank Forte, Little Falls, NY

The state canal system includes more than 500 miles of water, including stretches of the Old Erie Canal, the Champlain Canal, Oswego Canal, and Cayuga-Seneca Canal. It stretches from Buffalo to Albany and northward to Lake Champlain.

It serves as an economic engine for the communities and businesses along its path. According to Heritage Corridors’ website, an estimated $1.3 billion is generated annually by canal-related events and tours.

This year, canal system was initially scheduled to open May 15.

However, due to delays in needed maintenance work in parts of the canal system resulting from the state’s reaction to the Covid-19 pandemic, it was opened in bits and pieces throughout the spring and summer – and not completely opened up to boat traffic until Aug. 10.

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