GRAFTON, N.Y. (NEWS10)- Grafton Lakes State Park is celebrating its 50 year anniversary with a community event. The park partnered with the Grafton Historical Society for the event to be held Thursday, July 1.

The park entry fee will be $.25, as it was when the park opened on July 1, 1971. All activities at the park’s anniversary celebration will be free. Lunch will be provided for $5.

“Grafton Lakes State Park’s breathtaking ponds and miles of trails are just some of the features
that make this site a jewel of the State Park system that has drawn many visitors over the
decades. This celebration will join past accolades with the next generation of park visitors who
appreciate all this special place has to offer,” said New York State Parks Recreation & Historic
Preservation Commissioner, Erik Kulleseid.

The park first opened on 1,850 acres of land, with five lakes, a 1,000-foot beach, concession stand, and park office. It currently occupies 2,500 acres, six lakes, 25 miles of trails, a reopened Dickinson Fire Tower, and a new Welcome Center.

Park anniversary activities

• Art pieces inspired by Grafton’s natural beauty. Contact the park for information on how to submit artwork.
• Commemoration lunch at noon- $5 per person. Pre-registration is required to get a lunch ticket.
• Historic Talks and Walks- Join in on a cemetery walk or look back at photos with Grafton
historian Anne Kiely.
• An informal gathering for community members to share their memories and stories of Grafton’s history.
• Visits to the Dickinson Fire Tower. Linda Laveway, granddaughter of Ellen Ellett, a female fire observer who served in the tower starting in 1943 and ending in 1965, will offer stories and recollections of her grandmother, who for a time at the tower was kept company by her dog, Tippy, and her pet raccoon, Soggy.

Current COVID safety procedures will be enforced at the event, with masks and social distancing. Visitors will be admitted on a first-come, first-serve basis. Once the park has reached its capacity for visitors, no new visitors will be admitted. Friday, July 2 is the scheduled rain date.

More information about Grafton State Park’s 50 year anniversary can be found on its Facebook page, the New York State Parks website, by emailing or by calling (518)279-1155.