Five Millionth Visitor Welcomed at St.
Lawrence-FDR Visitors Center
(315) 764-0226, Ext. 300
July 23, 2001
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MASSENAWhen Justin Rufa, a senior at the United States Air Force Academy in
Colorado Springs, Colorado and a native of Massena, and his family walked into the
Visitors Center at the New York Power Authoritys
St. Lawrence-Franklin D. Roosevelt Power Project on
Monday, it marked a major milestone for the popular North Country tourism destination5
Justin and the Rufa family got another surprise when they were greeted and
congratulated by Robert Hadler, the Power Authority's community relations manager for
Northern New York. Hadler presented Justin with a gift commemorating the event.
"On behalf of the trustees and the staff at the St. Lawrence-FDR Power Project, we
are delighted to welcome you as the 5 millionth guest to the Visitors Center," said
Hadler. "It gives us a great opportunity to show the hospitality the North Country is
The St. Lawrence-FDR Power Project began producing electricity in 1958, the same year
the Visitors Center opened. The Visitors Center was updated in the 1980s and received a
major renovation in 2000. Since it opened, the center has averaged about 120,000 visitors
The Visitor Center renovation in 2000 included over 40 new exhibits, many being
computerized and/or hands-on displays to dramatize how electricity is made and used. There
is also an audio-visual terrain map of the St. Lawrence Valley and a hand-carved wooden
relief map tracing the routes of Jacques Cartiers historic explorations. Two
spectacular murals by famed American artist Thomas Hart Benton capture the spirit of
Cartiers early voyages. The observation deck, more than 100 feet above the St.
Lawrence River, gives visitors breathtaking views of the Adirondack Mountains, Canada and
the power dam.
The admission-free Visitors Center is located off Route 37, just east of Massena. It is
open year-round with some holiday closings. Hours and days vary according to season and
admission is free.
For more information on the Visitors Center, please call 1-800-262-NYPA (6972) in New
York or 1-315-764-0226, ext. 304, for out-of-state.