The Friends of the Delaware Canal (FODC) is an independent, non-profit organization working to restore, preserve and improve the Canal and its surroundings. Its primary goals are to ensure that the Canal is fully watered and the towpath trail is usable over its entire length. The Friends embrace this mission because they believe the 58.9 mile-long Canal provides a unique link to our heritage; beautiful, diverse natural areas; and exciting educational and recreational opportunities.
They accomplish their goals through advocacy, programs, partnerships, community volunteers and fundraising. In keeping with the goal of educating people about the Canal, the Friends have restored the Locktender’s House in New Hope and have opened it as a museum and visitors’ center.
Members of the group are also available to visit schools and organizations to conduct programs on the Canal and Canal life.
In addition, the Friends hold walks, bike hikes, and other activities to acquaint people with the historic Canal and its opportunities.
The Delaware Canal was completed in 1832 and runs from Bristol to Easton. Its primary purpose was to transport coal from northeast Pennsylvania to cities, but it also hauled many other kinds of cargo. Commercial use of the Canal dwindled and in 1931, it became a Pennsylvania State Park. In 1978, the Delaware Canal was designated a National Historic Landmark.
Flood repair projects extending from Easton south to Yardley are underway and expected to be completed in spring 2014. Check www.fodc.org to get updated information about open and closed sections of the towpath.
The Friends are always looking for volunteers to assist with Clean-Up Day held in April of each year and other project and activities. Contact the Friends of the Delaware Canal at 215-862-2021, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or go to the FODC website, www.fodc.org, for more information.