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Fort Edward

An old painting shows the view of the Champlain Canal from Notre Dame Street Bridge in Fort Edward. It hangs in Ye Old Fort Diner as seen on Dec. 11 in the village.

Lakes to Locks Passage will be giving the Champlain Canal some artistic exposure with the help of a $49,500 grant from the state’s Regional Economic Development Council.

The canal runs 64 miles between the Hudson River and Lake Champlain, and the grant awarded by the state Council on the Arts will feature its unique culture and heritage, especially in Washington and Saratoga counties.

Lakes to Locks Passage will feature those things through a multimedia project tied to the 200th anniversary of the Erie Canal system, according to a news release.

The project has three components, including creation of a downloadable audio tour of the Champlain Canal region, an exhibit at the Champlain Canal Visitor Center in Schuylerville and an online art gallery featuring historical and contemporary depictions of the canal.

The exhibit will provide an immersive experience on the canal’s heritage, while also encouraging visitors to check out the canal by boat, bike or by foot.

The three ideas sprang from a series of meetings in the spring of 2018 with Lakes to Locks Passage and Champlain Canal community members, according to a news release.

“Through these sessions we discovered compelling stories and heritage, as well as unique museum and art collections that illustrate how the Champlain Canal allowed people to travel great distances, spread ideas, and spur the growth of our communities,” Lakes to Locks passage wrote. “This is all largely unknown to the general public. Today, many boaters consider the Champlain Canal the most scenic and interesting landscape of the entire NYS (New York State) Canal system, but it lacks brand distinctiveness from the Erie Canal. It is now time to change that by telling the story of the canal that connects the Hudson River at Waterford to the southern end of Lake Champlain at Whitehall.”

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