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Cornhole tournament, 42nd Infantry Division Band to join Seneca Falls Canal Fest lineup

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  • Staff Report 

This year’s upcoming Seneca Falls Canal Fest will include “more live music and entertainment options for visitors than in past years,” announced Janelle Bradshaw, the festival’s music producer.   The seventh annual festival is slated to begin Friday June 30 and run through Sunday, July 2. Canal Fest will be situated along the Seneca Falls harbor and features vendors, music, fireworks, midway rides, the annual Duck Race and more.


The festival will include nine separate musical performances, plus two dance acts. Along with big band, rock and blues genres, folk, country and jazz offerings will also grace the main stage. The featured big band performances will be Mix Tape on FridaySix Feet Apart & Super Spreader Horns on Saturday and NEO Project on Sunday.  Additional live music throughout the weekend includes Paradigm ShiftFlint Creek DuoDan Babbitt with Open Mic!The MoversBob Keefe & Surf Renegades, and a first-time appearance by the 40-member 42nd Infantry Division Band.  The lauded Finger Lakes Witchy Women will return to dance, in addition to a belly dancers’ performance.

New to the Festival this year will be a three-day Cornhole tournament sponsored by Wolffy’s Grill & Marina and managed by Between the Lakes Cornhole. Each day will feature a new competition: Airmail Challenge, Singles/Single Elimination, Competitive Switcholio/Round Robin and Blind Draw Double Elimination. Friday’s Airmail and Sunday’s Double Elimination challenges will payout for top winners. The Competitive Cornhole Switcholio on Saturday offers cash prizes for 1st, 2nd & 3rd place winners. Cornhole preregistration is available on the SCOREHOLIO App.

Tickets for Sunday’s annual Duck Race are currently available from downtown merchants with over $2,500 in cash and prizes awarded to 40 winning ducks; with the first duck receiving $1,000 and the last duck winning $100.

Haidee Oropallo, chair of the 2023 Canal Fest Committee believes it is important to provide a wide variety of music, games and activities to appeal to everyone. “Canal Fest is about celebrating and sharing our local community with visitors of all ages and interests. We hope providing a range of activities from the Midway to the Duck Race, an amazing music lineup and booths, that people will see Seneca Falls is truly a wonderful place not only to visit, but to celebrate.”

Chris Podzuweit, another Festival organizer said “The seventh annual Seneca Falls Canal Fest won’t disappoint! With over 30 vendor booths and another dozen food and drink options, everyone will have a fabulous weekend!”

Saturday morning will begin with Right To Run, an in-person 5k/virtual 19k foot race celebrating the passage of the 19th amendment. RTR’s purpose is to inspire, empower, mobilize and connect women.  Men, women and children of all ages are welcome to join this race, and can register at righttorun19k.org.  Saturday will end with giant fireworks over Van Cleef Lake at 10pm.

Additional activities for the weekend include the expanded Kids Zone with activities and games in People’s Park and a petting zoo.  Canal Fest hours are Friday 5pm-11pm, Saturday 10am-10pm, Sunday 10am-5pm. The event is free due to the generosity of Canal Fest’s sponsors – The Town of Seneca Falls, Bonafiglia Family Foundation, Generations Bank, Waterloo Container, Goulds Pumps, Community Bank and D&W Diesel.

Conveniently located halfway between Rochester and Syracuse, Seneca Falls is a little town with some big connections. Proud to be part of the New York State Canal System, showcasing a beautiful waterfront with docking facilities and amenities for boaters traveling through the Cayuga-Seneca Canal, it is also a testament to the women’s suffrage movement in the United States.  Seneca Falls is where more than 300 women and men gathered for the nation’s first women’s rights convention in 1848 and now is home to the Women’s Rights National Historical Park and the National Women’s Hall of Fame. Also widely believed to be the inspiration for Frank Capra’s holiday classic, It’s A Wonderful Life, the town hosts the annual It’s a Wonderful Life Festival in early December.