Color the Canal

From July 12-14, the Friends of the Mohawk-Hudson Bike-Hike Trail and CREATE Community Studios will be co-hosting Color the Canal, an interactive, sculptural and visual art event designed the celebrate Schenectady, its heritage and the Mohawk-Hudson Bike-Hike Trail. We want to encourage trail users to learn more about the trail as well as visit the downtown area and participate in local events. This event will coincide with the arrival of more than 650 cyclists participating in the Cycle the Erie Canal (CEC) ride.

Color the Canal will include a chalk art event open for public participation, chalk art and visual art installations at various "hubs," as well as opportunities for organizations or sponsors to create other types of art (posters, murals, sculpture, etc) to welcome CEC cyclists and other trail users. We'll be encouraging local businesses and organizations -- including art, school and nonprofit groups -- to participate to highlight the services they provide in Schenectady County and emphasize the experiences the city offers for trail users. Community groups would also have the opportunity to paint/design on rigid plastic signs in advance to create art that would line parts of the trail (and also be weather proof). Some suggestions for sign subjects include landscapes, abstract shapes, humorous quotes, nature, historical facts about Schenectady.

Join us on these dates to help Color the Canal:

  • July 11: If you want to participate in Color the Canal but are unsure of how, CREATE will be having an art and sign-making workshop on July 11. Individuals, businesses and non-profits are all welcome to take part! 1-3 p.m. CREATE Community Studios, 137 State Street, Schenectady.
  • July 12: Part II of Color the Canal will be creating chalk art and installing art along the trail on Friday, July 12, the day before the Cycle the Erie Canal cyclists roll into town. This will allow us to put art on and around the trail without getting in the way of the (hundreds of) cyclists. Individuals, businesses and non-profits are all welcome to take part! Please note that chalking is weather dependent. More details to come: Meeting place TBA.
  • July 13: Chalk fest and art show. Join us for a Chalk Fest and Art Show along the Rotterdam-Schenectady portion of bike path. Come out and view the awesome artwork made by your local community members! Hours TBD. SUNY Schenectady track (near the bike path entrance on the loop road), Schenectady.

Want to help?

We're raising money through GoFundMe for Color the Canal. We also have sponsorship opportunities available. Contact Gillian Scott (518-372-8478 or for more information on sponsorships. Contact Charlotte Mack at CREATE Community Studio (518-348-9290 or to pick up sign-making materials. We are grateful for your support!

Thanks to our sponsors

This event is funded in part by a Schenectady County County Initiative Program (CIP) Arts, History & Tourism Grant. Other sponsors include SUNY Schenectady and Parks & Trails New York.