Cycle the Erie Canal Trailblazer


Do you believe in the importance of a completed Erie Canalway Trail? Do you want to save $625 over the regular tour registration costs? Become a Cycle the Erie Canal Trailblazer today and raise money to close the gaps in the Erie Canalway Trail and cycle the tour for only $100!

The Need for Trailblazers


The 360-mile Erie Canalway Trail, when complete, will be the longest intrastate multi-use trail in the country. For more than a decade, Parks & Trails New York has worked with the New York State Canal Corporation, local municipalities, trail groups, and other stakeholders to close the gaps in the trail while increasing trail visibility and highlighting economic opportunities for local communities.

Cycle the Erie Canal Trailblazers are a group of individuals who believe in the vision of a completed Erie Canalway Trail… and are ready to help make it a reality.

Becoming a Trailblazer

Trailblazers, who will be fully supported every step of the way in their fundraising efforts by PTNY staff must commit to raising a minimum of $1,500 to help close the gaps in the Erie Canalway Trail.

Exclusive Trailblazer Benefits

  • Step-by-step instructions for setting up your fundraising page
  • Fundraising language, images and social media support
  • Regular communications and support for your fundraising efforts
  • Special recognition during the tour
  • Free Cycling the Erie Canal Guidebook ($24.95 value)
  • Complimentary Cycle the Erie Canal Jersey ($80 value)

In addition to all of this

  • Camping accommodations every evening with showers and toilet facilities. Some campsites include swimming pools.
  • Eight hearty breakfasts and six delicious dinners
  • Two daily refreshment stops, stocked with fruit, snacks and beverages
  • Evening entertainment, including music and historical presentations
  • Guided tours of the Canal, historic sites, museums, and other attractions, including the Women’s Rights National Historic Park, Erie Canal Museum and Village, Fort Stanwix National Monument, and a boat tour through the Lockport locks
  • Kick-off reception and end-of-tour celebration
  • Cycle the Erie Canal t-shirt and water bottle
  • Baggage transport
  • SAG wagon and mobile mechanical support
  • Daily maps and cue sheets
  • Pre-departure info packet, including training tips
  • Recognition as an Erie Canalway Trail End-to-Ender

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the required fundraising minimum?

The minimum fundraising commitment is $1,500 to become a Cycle the Erie Canal Trailblazer. Don’t worry! Our fundraising staff is here to help you reach and exceed your goal!

Does my registration count toward the total amount I need to raise?

Yes! After your registration is complete, you only have $1,400 to go!

What are the fundraising deadlines?

Registration Deadline: Cyclists must register to be a Trailblazer before May 1 of the tour year.

Fundraising Deadline: The total fundraising goal of $1,500 (which includes the $100 registration) needs to be received by PTNY by mid-June.

I've never fundraised before. How do I do it?

If you are worried about raising the full fundraising amount, please contact us. We will work with you directly on your fundraising strategy to help you achieve your goals and be successful. Trailblazers who are unable to raise the fundraising minimum by the deadline can also self-pledge the remainder of the balance.

How do people contribute?

Donors make gifts through your secure Trailblazer fundraising page by using their credit card. Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express cards are accepted.

Are donations tax-deductible?

Parks & Trails New York is a registered 501c 3 charitable organization so all donations to your fundraising campaign are tax-deductible for the person(s) making the donation(s), to the fullest extent of the law. A tax receipt and acknowledgement letter will be sent to each supporter of your fundraising campaign.

Note: the $100 Trailblazer registration fee is not tax deductible.

Do Matching Gifts from my donors’ employers count toward my fundraising goals?

Yes! Donors are able to double the amount they contribute to your fundraising efforts through a matching gift from their (or their spouse’s) employer. Donors simply need to contact their employer’s HR department to receive the proper matching gift forms.

What is the cancellation/refund policy?

Cycle the Erie Canal Trailblazers commit to raising the full fundraising amount when they register. All contributions to PTNY through the Trailblazer program are non-refundable and will go to supporting the work being done to close the gaps along the Erie Canalway Trail.

If a Trailblazer chooses to discontinue fundraising for the ride, he or she will not be able to apply the amount of donations raised toward a regular ride registration. The Trailblazer’s registration fee will be credited as a charitable gift if the rider cancels and a tax receipt and acknowledgement letter will be sent to the rider. We understand that unforeseen circumstances may mean you are unable to join us for Cycle the Erie Canal. Credits for a future tour may be given on a case-by-case basis.

Still have questions?

Email Jonathan Duda at or call 518-434-1583 and he’ll be happy to help!