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700 cyclists make 400-mile cross-state bicycle trip in celebration of Erie Canal Bicentennial, Barge Canal Centennial


Fri, Jul 6th 2018 05:30 pm
20th anniversary Cycle the Erie Canal tour starts in Buffalo
On Sunday, July 8, more than 700 cyclists will leave their cars behind to pedal along the historic Erie Canalway Trail from Buffalo to Albany in celebration of the Erie Canal Bicentennial and Barge Canal Centennial. They will arrive in Buffalo on Saturday to prepare for the launch of the 20th annual 400-mile Cycle the Erie Canal tour, organized by the statewide nonprofit group Parks & Trails New York.
Covering between 40 and 60 miles per day, cyclists travel along the Erie Canalway Trail, which is now 80 percent complete and will, by 2020, be completed as part of the statewide 750-mile Empire State Trail. A recent study shows the Erie Canalway Trail annually receives close to 1.6 million visits and generates an economic impact of $253 million.
"The 20th annual Cycle the Erie Canal tour is a wonderful way to celebrate the Erie Canal Bicentennial, Barge Canal Centennial, and explore upstate New York. Plus, it's fun, healthy, and good for the economy," said Parks & Trails New York Executive Director Robin Dropkin. "We have cyclists aged 6 to 82 from 37 states and several Canadian provinces, as well as Australia and the United Kingdom, and they all get to experience what makes the Erie Canal and upstate New York so special."
The NYS Canal Corp. and the New York Power Authority are premier state sponsors of Cycle the Erie Canal. The Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor is the event's heritage sponsor. Brookfield and Nalgene are supporting sponsors. Other sponsors include Wegmans and Hodgson Russ. Eleven regional tourism agencies also sponsor the ride.
Parks & Trails New York is New York's leading statewide advocate for parks and trails, dedicated since 1985 to improving health, economy and quality of life through the use and enjoyment of green space. 

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