People gathered at the Hector Fairgrounds Sunday for the Big Splash event in Schuyler County. YNN's Katie Husband tells us why organizers felt it was important to put the event together.
HECTOR, N.Y. -- People at the Hector Fairgrounds were setting up for the second annual Seneca Lake Big Splash event hosted by the Finger Lakes Clean Waters Initiative.
"Seneca Lake is under dual, industrial pressure right now from LPG storage and the threat of hydrofracking," said Chris Tate, co-founder, Finger Lakes Clean Waters Initiative.
The Finger Lakes Clean Waters Initiative is made up of small business owners who want to fight against these activities, so they came up with Big Splash.
"Just a focus on clean water, something both celebratory and fun, and also with a focus on education around the dangers of hydrofracking," said Hilary Davis, event coordinator.
Organizers enjoy what the region has to offer, but they're also concerned for the possible negative impacts of gas drilling and liquid propane gas storage.
"We have this beautiful wine-making economy, tourism economy, sustainable for one thousand years of tourism. We have this beautiful, sustainable economy and we want to preserve our local economy, and defend our number one economic resource which is clean water," said Tate.
The message is the same across the board here, keep hydrofracking and LPG storage away from the Finger Lakes Region. One local business owner that has come back for the second year in a row says that more than half of his customers are from Pennsylvania and they say the controversial gas drilling method has wreaked havoc on their neighborhoods.
"Well, about 82 percent of my customers come from PA and they tell me the place is about ruined. So, I don't like and I don't want to see it happen," said Jason Hazlitt, co-owner, Hector Wine Company.
Which is why they have organized it again this year, and will continue to fight against these activities. There have been recent reports that New York State may soon allow limited hydrofracking in some areas, specifically in the Southern Tier region.