Oswego County Public Information Office, 46 East Bridge St., Oswego, NY 13126

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April 8, 2005

County Health Department Sponsors Annual Drinking Water Contest at Lake Ontario Bird Festival

MEXICO – The Environmental Division of the Oswego County Health Department will hold its annual competition for the best-tasting drinking water in Oswego County Saturday, May 7 at the Lake Ontario Bird Festival.

The festival takes place at Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park and Campgrounds, County Route 16, Mexico. Visitors to the bird festival will be the judges. Volunteers will taste unidentified samples of drinking water from municipal water systems in the county and choose their favorites.

All municipal water supplies are eligible to enter. The local winner will advance to a regional contest, and regional winners will compete for the state title at the New York State Fair in August. Last year’s winner, the village of Mexico, went on to win the regional competition and was a finalist at the state fair. Mexico has won the state title twice.

“Oswego County is very fortunate to have an abundant supply of drinking water. The contest helps remind people of the importance of protecting our water resources in Oswego County and across New York State,” said Natalie Roy, associate health sanitarian for the county Health Department.

The Lake Ontario Bird Festival is a free family event with live bird demonstrations, workshops, and a variety of activities for children. This year there will be over 25 vendors selling crafts, artwork, birdhouses, natural soaps and other items. On Mother’s Day the Junior ROTC from Mexico High School will sponsor a pancake breakfast at the festival. Free shuttle buses, provided by A & E Transport, will take visitors to the nearby Derby Hill Bird Observatory and Mexico Point State Park for birding and nature hikes.

The ninth annual Lake Ontario Bird Festival is sponsored by the New York Power Authority, Town of Mexico, Oswego Harbor Festivals, Inc., Yogi Bear’s Jellystone Park Resort, Oswego County Department of Promotion and Tourism, A&E Transport Services, Inc., Constellation Energy Nine Mile Point, Eastern Shore Associates, Eddie’s Big M, Greater Mexico Chamber of Commerce, Hiscock and Barclay, Mexico Foods, Inc., Mexicali Rose, Moore’s Lumber, North Country Veterinary Services, Oswego County National Bank, Oswego County Weeklies, Path Finder Bank, Port Lodge Motel, Price Chopper Supermarkets, Pulaski Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce, Redwood Motel, and Stewart’s Shops.

For more information, call Yogi Bear’s at 963-7096 or visit the bird festival Web site at www.lakeontariobirdfestival.com.

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