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Oswego Paddlefest Adds 10-Mile Fulton Leg

Kayakers outside the historic Brosmer Brewery entrance between Minetto and Fulton on the Oswego River. (Submitted photo)

Oswego Paddlefest’s Rock the Locks event will rock a little longer this year as organizers invited the city of Fulton to join its event, adding a new 10-mile course designation to the Oswego River route.

IMG_6758Paddlefest organizer Jake Mulcahey appeared before the Fulton Common Council in February to offer the invite, then again on June 3 to seal the deal for June 21.

“Recently I met with Councilor Larry Macner over at the Indian Point boat launch. I just wanted to bring you up to speed,” Mulcahey told city leaders.

With the addition of Fulton, the event – now in its second year – will give kayak and canoe paddlers the choice of a 4-mile short course from Minetto to Oswego, and a 10-mile long course which shoves off from the launch on the city of Fulton’s northern most point.

The short course begins at River’s Edge park in Minetto, launches at 10 a.m., and is estimated to take 1-3 hours to complete.

The long course starts at Indian Point at 8 a.m. and paddles north on the Oswego River along the historic canal and through the Oswego Canal Lock 5 in Minetto and Locks 6 and 7 in Oswego.

Kayakers outside the historic Brosmer Brewery entrance between Minetto and Fulton on the Oswego River. (Submitted photo)
Kayakers outside the historic Brosmer Brewery entrance between Minetto and Fulton on the Oswego River. (Submitted photo)

In 4-6 hours kayakers and canoeists stroking an easy pace from the Fulton launch site will find themselves at the Rock the Locks party-in-the-park right along the river canal’s edge between Lock 7 and Lock 8 in Oswego.

Launch timing from each site will land the flotilla in time to enjoy the noontime – 5 p.m. festivities in Oswego’s park along the river canal.

One concern Mulcahey expressed to councilors is the traffic at the entrance to the Indian Point parking area from Route 481 in Fulton.

“You did notice when you were down there that there’s a street that goes to the south. If you’re concerned about the traffic on the curve, they could drive down North First Street,” Mayor Ron Woodward said.

Mulcahey said he did notice the street, and that Paddlefest would have a parking attendant at the site to direct people to park in the parking lot, instructing them to park backed in facing the highway.

“My concern is the traffic on Route 481,” Mulcahey said.

Oswego County Legislator Jake Mulcahey, organizer of Oswego Paddlefest Rock the Locks, and Fulton Common Councilor Larry Macner, at right.
Oswego County Legislator Jake Mulcahey, organizer of Oswego Paddlefest Rock the Locks, and Fulton Common Councilor Larry Macner, at right, get the ball rolling in February.

Woodward suggested some ‘event in progress’ signage on the highway would help to alert thru traffic to the activity in the park that morning.

“Registration here in Fulton opens up at 7a.m.,” Mulcahey explained. “We hope to have everybody in the water by 8-8:30 a.m. Throughout the day there will be a shuttle bus running. It starts at noon in Oswego, dropping folks back off at their vehicles in Minetto then at Fulton.

Event organizers welcome paddlers of all ages. Mulcahey told councilors to plan on approximately 150-200 people moving through Indian Point Park the morning of the paddle.

Pre-registration is $25 for canoes and $20 for kayaks and includes a meal voucher for vendors at the Rock the Locks party on the river.

2013 Oswego Paddlefest participants get wet in the rain.  (Submitted photo)
2013 Oswego Paddlefest participants get wet in the rain.

“We’ve got people registered for the event from as far as New Jersey, so we’re hoping for a good turnout. Keep your fingers crossed for the weather,” Mulcahey added.

For advanced registration or more information online visit http://www.oswegopaddlefest.com.

For information about paddling the canal system visit http://www.canals.ny.gov/maps/about-watertrail.html.