You'd never know it by the cloud cover, but Friday marked the start of summer in Lewiston. The annual Smelt Festival drew in crowds from across Western New York, with each person hungry for a free sample of the tiny, deep-fried fish.
The Niagara River Anglers were set to batter and fry 400 pounds of smelt, which would be distributed inside white paper boats to festivalgoers. Local dignitaries filled cups of cocktail sauce and passed out smelt along the waterfront.
Food and entertainment were courtesy of the Niagara River Region Chamber of Commerce, the Village of Lewiston and The Silo Restaurant.
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation deemed Lewiston as one of the best places in the country for smelt dipping. Smelt are one of the few fish that sportsmen are allowed to net.