Clifton Park, New York (July 12, 2013) - A new audio tour is being launched to provide convenient and accessible interpretation of the Mohawk Towpath Scenic Byway and the many stories it has to tell about the historic waterway west and the Erie Canal. The audio tour, powered by OnCell, will highlight and encourage the use of the many cultural, natural and recreational resources within the Byway corridor.
"As the use of the tour increases, so will the sense of need to preserve our heritage," said Eric Hamilton, Executive Director. "Through this audio tour we are providing inter-pretation of our resources on demand. Local municipal officials and several enthusi-asts supply the authentic voice in an up close and personal way. This guarantees a positive visitor experience."
The Mohawk Towpath Scenic Byway partnered with OnCell for mobile tour services which include unlimited calls and audio streaming. Visitors will be able to access the OnCell audio tour by dialing the tour number and following the prompts to listen to tour content, or by streaming the tour content through the mobile web tour designed for smartphones.
"We feel this will nicely complement a series of five interpretive kiosks along the Mo-hawk Towpath Byway," stated Eric Hamilton, Executive Director. "This is a part of a larger interpretive project funded by the Federal Highway Administration Byway Grant administered by the New York State Department of Transportation which will provide six additional kiosks along the Byway route as it follows the historic route of the Erie Canal and the waterway west between Cohoes, Waterford and Schenectady, New York."
Fourteen sites are included in this audio tour:
- Aqueduct Park, Niskayuna
- Clutes Dry Dock, Clifton Park
- Cohoes Falls, Cohoes
- Crescent Park, Halfmoon
- Dunsbach Ferry Site, Halfmoon
- Ferry Drive, Rexford
- Flight of Locks, Waterford
- Freddies Park, Colonie
- Lock 7 Dam Overlook, Rexford
- Old Military Crossing, Colonie
- Riverview Orchards, Rexford
- Vischer Ferry Nature and Historic Preserve, Clifton Park
- Visitor Center, Robb Alley, Proctors, Schenectady
- Waterford Harbor Visitor Center, Waterford
"No doubt, we will add more as we see how the system is used," admitted Larry Syzdek, Chairman of the Mohawk Towpath Scenic Byway Coalition board. "These sites were picked, because they are key to telling the Byway's many stories and they are locations that provide an opportunity to pull off the road."
"This is a wonderful way to share the Byway stories. It is more convenient and much more accessible than making arrangements to meet a bus load of visitors," admits His-torian John Scherer. "We record the narrative once and it's available to our neighbors or the Byway visitor on demand."
A brochure describing the audio tour will be available in area visitor centers and mu-nicipal offices within the next week. Many of our participating municipalities, neigh-borhood and civic organizations are planning activities to celebrate the new service concurrent with Canal Splash! on August 10. Details will be posted on: http://www.mohawktowpath.org/events.html, or from the Canal Corporation's calendar: http://www.canals.ny.gov/news/events/special/index.html.
The phone number for the audio tour is 518-649-9990.
About Mohawk Towpath Scenic Byway Coalition
The Mohawk Towpath Scenic Byway Coalition is a regional partnership of communi-ties that balances the promotion of local interests with the protection of scenic, historic, recreational, natural, and agricultural resources. Activities encourage preservation, visi-tor accommodations and intermodal access: coordinate interpretation, promotion, and signage; and emphasize the important historic transportation role of the Mohawk River valley and the resultant cultural/industrial development important to the westward ex-pansion of the country. The Mohawk Towpath Scenic Byway covers some 26 miles in the upstate New York counties of Albany. Saratoga, and Schenectady. For more infor-mation, visit www.MohawkTowpath.org.