WCNY announces plans for new Erie Canal documentary

WCNY Public Media is pleased to announce it will develop a dynamic new television documentary to tell the story of the Erie Canal. WCNY will present the documentary for national distribution to public television stations in late 2016 through PBS as part a national content campaign focused on America’s parks.The Erie Canal earned a national park qualification through its Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor designation assigned in partnership with the National Park Service. This documentary with additional footage will also be featured at the 2017 World Canal Conference that will be hosted in Syracuse in 2017, which coincides with the 2017 bicentennial of the beginning of construction of the canal.WCNY Public Media launched the project with a media event at WCNY’s Broadcast and Education Center located at 415 West Fayette Street in Syracuse on January 6. The event kicked off a half-day gathering of Erie Canal experts, historians and stakeholders hosted by WCNY in its Education Center. In attendance will be representatives from the New York Canal Society, Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor, Erie Canal Corporation, New York State Museum, New York State Archives, New York State Library, and several museums and historical organizations.WCNY produced a short video recap of the media event available at HERE for the media and other educational outlets.The documentary will capture the national and international impact made by the canal as early America’s first great human-made marvel. It will explore the canal’s story of political, technical and social innovation and how something even one of America’s founding fathers called “a little short of madness” became the defining accomplishment of an emerging nation. The documentary will probe lingering questions about the canal and explain that, while the Erie Canal was made in New York, and made New York the Empire State, it’s much more than a New York story.

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