Fairport Canal Days organizers outline tentative plans

Stephanie Duprey
Updated: April 28, 2021 06:58 AM
Created: April 27, 2021 10:45 PM

FAIRPORT, N.Y. (WHEC) — The organizers of Fairport Canal Days are making plans to proceed with the event come June. They say they have full support from county officials but may need a little more from the state.

Leaders of the event say masks will be required at all times and the layout allows for social distancing. Instead of 300 vendors tents will be set for 150. The show is also being cut in half and will only run on a portion of North Main Street. Locals say they would be heartbroken to have to miss a second year.

Prudence Palatas said she's been attending Canal Days for 40 years. 

"It's outside, why can't we have it? If they can limit the amount of people maybe but I see no reason why we couldn't have it,” Palatas said. 

When we asked about what more they would need from the governor’s office, other than the current festival guidelines, organizers said one thing is “containment” that could be an issue but they think they have a plan.

"There are some things they want to keep contained and this is one of the things we're learning right now and being able to control the flow of people going in and out of a site,” Director of Public Relations Scott Winner said.

Winner says the decision will also come down to economics, that if the plan they're proposing becomes more limited, it would be pointless to run. This year’s blueprints have many changes. 

"We don't plan on doing the chicken barbeque because it’s not a good idea to have people waiting to get their food hot off the grill and we most likely won't have any musical performances,” Winner said.

On the event's website, it says that masks must be worn at all times.

“We're not certain at this point what is going to be required of us to ensure that someone is vaccinated or not again if those logistics become too much to honor, we can't control that. It could be a deal-breaker, “ Winner added. 

If Canal Days gets the green light, one Fairport community member News10NBC spoke to says he'll feel safe at the event regardless of the guidance.

"We aren't going to have park avenue I think Fairport will be a good example to show it's safe and needed in the community,” Barry Palatas said.

Organizers say they have great support from the county and reps from the governor’s office. They hope the plan they have will be enough, they'll have a definitive answer by the end of next week.

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