Richmond Aqueduct

Richmond Aqueduct
Second Largest Aqueduct Built on the Enlarged Erie Canal (1856-1917)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012


The Canal Clean Sweep was another huge success this year in the Montezuma Heritage Park thanks to some wonderful volunteers that came out on Saturday, April 21 and Sunday, April 29.  This year's two events helped to ready the park for the arrival of visitors this week traveling from Buffalo across state on the Erie Canal and then down the Hudson River to New York City.  Richard Harpham and Glenn Charles are two experienced adventurers who have covered over 19,500 human powered miles between them by kayak, canoe and bike and have a passion for inspiring young people and communities through their challenges. They will be sharing their experiences by giving talks about their adventures and documenting life and interviewing people they meet on their travels. They started their adventure this morning in Buffalo (May 1, 2012), and are expected to stop in Montezuma for lunch at the Richmond Aqueduct on Saturday, May 5th.  You can follow them on their adventure through their blog:

Chef Paul Baker removes the trash cans to reveal two turkeys for lunch.

The April 21 event,  one of the more cold and rainy spring days, didn't dampen the enthusiasm for getting the job done. Volunteers pitched in to accomplish two major goals set by the Design Committee for the day. Paul Baker, our Master Chef, cooked Trash Can Turkey for lunch while workers set out for trail work.  Maybe it was the smell roasting turkey that led our work teams to finish their jobs quickly.

Bench placed at the entrance to the Lock 62 Trail
One crew worked on installing four new benches (water to set the cement provided by Mother Nature) were placed along the Byron Lapp Memorial Trail and the Aqueduct Trail.  Extensive brush clearing work was done to reveal the well-intact Lock 11 remains on the Cayuga Seneca Canal.

Brush clearing at Lock 11 on the Cayuga-Seneca Canal

Volunteers created a clear view on the west side of Lock 11 on the C & S Canal

By noon the work was done, and we abandoned the idea of a trailgate lunch to head for dryer and warmer ground at the town hall.

Sunny skies on Sunday, April 29 greeted volunteer Girl Scouts, American Heritage Girls and Boy Scouts with their leaders and parents from Montezuma, Port Byron and Bloomfield to help in the park for this year's second Clean Sweep event. Before getting started a Bike Rodeo was held for youth from the area teaching hands-on bike safety and were given brand new helmets conducted by Joe Mushock and his volunteers for the Cayuga County Governor's Traffic Safety program.

Amy Barra, Cornell Cooperative Extension Environmental Educator gives us a lesson on how the garlic mustard plant is a very invasive specie that spreads, and is damaging the ecosystem. It's roots have toxins that are harmful to other more beneficial plants. It didn't take much convincing for the youth to start scouting out the plant that Amy helped them identify, and pulling it up by its root on the Aqueduct Trail on our way back to the parking lot.  Their enthusiasm for wanting to help is so encouraging for the future of our Mother Earth. The adult leaders and parents are to be commended for teaching them the importance of protecting our natural resources. Every root pulled helped to stop further invasion.

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