Saturday, November 1, 2014
CRUISE ON THE ERIE CANAL - PART 1
The story of the Colonial Belle and how she arrived in Fairport, New York is kind of interesting and funny. She was made, I can't remember, if he said Boston or New York and was used in New York City by the Statue of Liberty for a while. Then she was sold to go on the Great Lakes. She went several other places and ended up near Alcatraz Prison in California.
Fairport was looking for a ship when they decided they would have cruises on the Erie Canal. They looked all over several ships and prices before deciding on the now Colonial Belle. What stopped them was the people that owned her said it would cost $100,000.00 to ship her from California to Fairport, New York. Our Captain had attended the meeting where the decision was made not to purchase it due to the shipping cost. He and a couple of friends stopped at the local pub to have a drink after the meeting. They got talking. One thing led to another and they decided why ship it. Why not go and drive it to Fairport. That wouldn't cost no $100,000. So they brought it up at the next meeting. One thing led to another, the ship was purchased. The captain and three other marine trained men flew to California and drove it back. He said it was the time of their lives. They went down the California and Mexico coast, stopping here and there to see places they knew they would never see again. Through the Panama Canal. Up the inlet coast waterway to the Hudson River. Took the Hudson to the Erie Canal and drove into Fairport which is still her home port today. He said he and the fellows had a ball and it didn't cost any where near $100,000.00.