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Cruise line offers Greene County excursions

An American Cruise Lines vessel.
October 5, 2018 08:17 pm

CATSKILL — The Greene County Department of Tourism, Economic Development and Planning is getting some help to show off county attractions this fall.

American Cruise Lines will offer a bus service through October from the Historic Catskill Point to destinations such as the Hudson River Skywalk, Thomas Cole National Historic Site, Hunter Mountain, Kaaterskill Falls and the museum at the Freightmaster’s Building in Catskill.

“We started working with them last year to get visitors to Greene County destinations to experience the great things here,” Greene County Tourism Marketing Manager Heather Bagshaw said.

The Hudson River cruises are extremely popular, American Cruise Lines Public Relations Manager Alexa Paolella said.

Three of the cruise line’s 11 ships are used for the tours, she said.

“The American Constitution has a capacity of 175 people, the Independence and the Starr can hold 100,” she said. “We’re almost at capacity now,” she said Monday.

There are 12 different Hudson River cruises this season. The first departed from New York City on Sept. 22 and the last will depart on Oct. 20, Paolella said.

The cruise makes stops in Troy, Kingston, Hyde Park, Catskill, West Point and Sleepy Hollow, Bagshaw said.

The cruises are typically docked in Catskill on Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays, Bagshaw said.

“On Sundays the visitors can do self-guided tours at the museum at the Point,” Bagshaw said. “On Monday there is a busing service to take them to the Skywalk. On Tuesdays visitors can go to the Skywalk, Kaaterskill Falls and the Skyride at Hunter Mountain.”

Cruisegoers received itineraries ahead of time so they can decide to stay on the boat or go on the excursions, Bagshaw said.

Tickets for the cruise range from $4,045 to $5,260 depending on which excursions are being offered, according to American Cruise Line’s website.

“All excursions are included in the price,” Bagshaw said.

Next year Bagshaw hopes that exploring the Main Street and downtown areas of some Greene County towns, especially the village of Catskill, will be added to the itinerary.

“I wish they had more time on Sundays,” she said. “That would be the best day for them to go downtown.”

The biggest time-frame for excursions is on Tuesdays, and many businesses are closed by the time the visitors get back, Bagshaw said.

“Some people walk to Main Street Catskill on their own but there is no bus service,” she said. “It’s hard to give them a flavor of what we have to offer in Greene County in such a limited amount of time.”