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Museum boats head to Keuka Lake   ADVERTISEMENT

Museum boats head to Keuka Lake

URBANA—The Finger Lakes Boating Museum moved its collection of some 75 boats from Geneva to a former Taylor Wine Company warehouse in Urbana at the southern end of Keuka Lake this past weekend, April 6 and 7.
Museum board President Vince Scalise explained the museum was told to leave its former storage location by the Geneva Industrial Development Agency, because plans for the museum to open in Geneva fell through. Meanwhile, Scalise said the board considered new location options at a Monday, April 8, meeting.
Board Vice President Ed Wightman added that the museum is in talks with at least one property owner. He added that Keuka Lake State Park, the future location of the Finger Lakes Museum, is still a possible location as well.
Wightman explained once plans fell through in Geneva, the board was given until March to either move the boats from the city or pay a $1,650 monthly rent. He added the museum was not paying any rent previously.
Originally, the board was working with the city of Geneva since 2009 to locate the museum within a visitors’ center planned for construction on municipally owned property. However, the museum said it was withdrawing from the agreement in December of 2012 based on actions the city had taken. In a letter to the city, Scalise said Geneva had demanded the museum provide evidence of having $589,000 in funds. Scalise said he saw this as a “condition to the execution of the lease.” A letter to friends and supporters of the museum added other issues included the city not negotiating a definitive lease agreement and not bringing the proposed cost of the center to within available funding.
At the time, the board also asked the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York and New York State Canal Corporation to transfer previously approved grants to the new location when it is selected. Wightman said the museum has not heard anything back yet from the state.