Contest Information

2017 “KEY TO LOCKS” AWARD TO HONOR LOCKS RESTORATION INTERPRETER DAVID CHATT

 David M. Chatt has been named the winner of the 12th Annual “Key to the Locks” Award.  A volunteer selection panel drawn from the Lockport community chose Chatt in recognition of his work in helping to bring the 19th century Flight of Five locks to life once again.

David Chatt, in white t-shirt and yellow gloves, helps demonstrate the restored Flight of Five locks last year.

David Chatt, in white t-shirt and yellow gloves, helps demonstrate the restored Flight of Five locks last year.

Since the restoration of part of the Erie Canal Flight of Five, Chatt has spearheaded the effort to interpret the Lockport locks to the public through locktending demonstrations. He has served as the chief volunteer on the project by recruiting, training, scheduling and supervising more than 125 volunteers to operate the 19th century locks and provide commentary to onlookers.

Chatt has worked closely with the Locks Heritage District Corporation, the Niagara County Historical Society, the NYS Canal Corporation and several other organizations to help develop and improve the public presentation of Lockport and Erie Canal history.

Chatt is a native of Lockport and lives in the town with his wife Jeanine. He is an engineer at Mahle, Behr, Troy, Inc.

Lockport Mayor Anne E. McCaffrey will present the award to Chatt at 3:30 p.m, on Saturday, May 13, at the Erie Canal Discovery Center, 24 Church St. in Lockport. The public is invited to attend.

The annual “Key to the Locks” Award was established to recognize persons in Niagara County who exemplify the community spirit or promote the heritage or preservation of the historic Erie Canal.

Past “Key to the Locks” Award winners are: 2006, Michael W. Tucker and Robin Brock; 2007, David Kinyon; 2008, Jane Whitmore; 2009, Clinton J. Starke; 2010, Becky Burns; 2011,  Joseph A. Whalen; 2012, Jeffery Degnan; 2013, Carol Schmelz; 2014, Rosemary Bernard; 2015, Dianne Koplas; and 2016, Joel Beyer.

The “Key to the Locks” ceremony is open to the public. Those attending can enjoy free admission to the Erie Canal Discovery Center and Penney Gallery following the event.

2016 AMISH QUILT DRAWING HAS A WINNER

Quilt '16Congratulations to Philo Brooks, winner of our 2016 Amish Quilt! Mr. Brooks won the quilt in a drawing at our Oktoberfest event Oct. 15. The quilt drawing benefited the History Center. This handmade, heirloom-quality quilt is made in the “Irish Chain Star” pattern.

PAST WINNERS OF ERIE CANAL SONG CONTEST

2013 Erie Canal Song Contest Winner!

Congratulations Tom Callahan

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2012 Erie Canal Song Contest Winner!
Congratulations Doc Stuart

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– “Diggers N’ Haulers”

2011 Erie Canal Song Contest Winner!
Congratulations Joe Baschnagel

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– “Heading West To Buffalo.”

2010 Erie Canal Song Contest Winner!
Congratulations Doc Stuart Shaprio
Press release |

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2009 Erie Canal Song Contest Winner!
John C. Mahoney and Patrick A Gordon
Press release |

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GCT2JE “A Time Capsule”
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