The City Pier at Canandaigua is a throwback to the days of the steam engine which was used as the method of propulsion for trains and steamboats in that era. In those days, a favorite weekend pastime was to take the train to City Pier and then board a steam boat for a weekend sightseeing excursion on Canandaigua Lake or to perhaps stop at one of the many landings which were scattered around the Canandaigua Lake.
Today’s boaters moor their motorboats at Seager Marine or trailer them to Canandaigua Lake and then launch them at the New York State Park which is near the Canandaigua Inn. There are still a few folks who enjoy a leisurely sail on the Lake and they have their sailboats moored in the outlet along City Pier or perhaps at the Yacht Club on the West side of Canandaigua Lake. But for the most part, the boating activity is confined to weekends as their owners return their boats to their slips or trailer them home as they return to begin their scheduled work week.
The concept of what constitutes a relaxing weekend or perhaps a week or two of vacation on Canandaigua Lake is undergoing a vast change. One only has to look to the northern end of Canandaigua Lake and see the huge transformation underway there in the form of Pinnacle North which will be open for business next August. There, one can rent an apartment for a week so that the whole family can stay in air-conditioned luxury. There will be shops and restaurants so that one doesn’t have to go outside in the heat. In a restaurant facing Canandaigua Lake, one can dine looking at the Lake, drink a glass of Dr. Franks Finger Lakes wine, and reminisce about the old days when people used to actually go boating on Canandaigua Lake. There will be no need to worry about green algae, draughts, or mosquitoes or any other natural phenomena that occur around the Finger Lakes.
Further to the right of Pinnacle North sits the Canandaigua Lady, a replica of an old paddle wheel steamboat similar to the ones which used to operate on Canandaigua Lake. But alas, she is slow, diesel powered, and hardly offers any real attraction for today’s summer visitors as they come to seek thrills like jet skiing and speed boating on the Lake. The developers of the new Finger Lakes Resort have abandoned their dream of apartments, overnight rooms, and banquet facilities on the site where the old Steamboat Landing Restaurant used to sit. For now, their dream has come to a hard reality stop.