- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 22, 2015

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York officials say the 524-mile state canal system is scheduled to open May 8 for the 2015 navigation season.

The system includes the Erie Canal, which follows the Mohawk River and connects the Hudson River by Albany to the Niagara River and Lake Erie.

The Cayuga-Seneca Canal connects the Erie Canal to Seneca Lake and Cayuga Lake.

The Oswego Canal connects the Erie to Lake Ontario.

The Champlain Canal connects the Hudson to Lake Champlain.

Scheduled hours of operation initially and in autumn are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., with 24-hour service for commercial vessels.

The regular schedule changes from June 4 to Sept. 9 with regular hours 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and many locks and lift bridges operating on demand from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

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