PLATTSBURGH — The Wilcox Dock Pavilion project is the result of three years of planning and dedication.
The facility, which sits between Wilcox Dock and the City of Plattsburgh Healthy Lungs Trail, covers several picnic tables and offers scenic views of Lake Champlain.
At a dedication of the new pavilion, Plattsburgh Sunrise Rotary Club President Tom Gosrich said the club has donated proceeds from the past three Mayor’s Cup Regatta and Festival events to the project.
“There’s a really long list of people to thank,” he said.
That includes Rotary Club members, the City of Plattsburgh, the New York State Canal Corp., local businesses and other volunteers and donors who have worked hard to make the pavilion a reality, Gosrich said.
The Canal Corp. owns the Wilcox Dock property and allows the city to use it through a fee-waived permit, according to corporation Deputy Director John Callaghan, who has made numerous visits to Plattsburgh.
“We’re pleased to have been able to work with you to make this facility a reality,” he told those at the dedication. “This gives us an opportunity to partner with communities like Plattsburgh (that) we might not otherwise have had an opportunity to partner with.”
He especially enjoyed meeting with his old friend, the late Capt. Frank Pabst, to listen to his entertaining stories of life in and on the lake. It is just one of the many special relationships he and the Canal Corp. staff have made over the years, Callaghan said.
He said the corporation still has many facilities, not only along the various canal systems, but also on waterways such as Lake Champlain and the Hudson River. It still owns a pier in Port Henry and used to own the State Dock in Rouses Point, which is now a scenic pier with a gazebo.
“Every pier the Canal Corp. has through the state on the main line (Erie Canal) or off line was built for the express purpose of access to the water,” Callaghan said.
While they were originally built for commerce, most are now used for recreational uses.
Mayor Donald Kasprzak said the Canal Corp. has been tremendous to work with on the various projects at its Wilcox Dock property. The city has wanted to expand what’s available at the Healthy Lungs Trail, he said.
“This is a perfect fit for that,” he said. “This particular project is one of the best I’ve been associated with since I became mayor.”
Sunrise Rotary Waterfront Project Committee Chair Victoria Duley said the pavilion makes a wonderful connection with the city, Cumberland Avenue neighborhood and other Wilcox Dock facilities. She said while plans started three years ago, construction started in May and concluded about a month ago.
“This has been a great project,” she said.
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