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Ithaca's Latest News & Events

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Pyramid Sound Buildings

On June 19, 2012, the City of Ithaca declared unsafe Pyramid Sound’s buildings, legally requiring that they be vacated immediately, and that repair or demolition commence by January 1, 2013.  The City regrets the impact of this necessary public safety measure on Pyramid Sound--a valued Ithaca business. Two professional engineers have opined that this building is at great risk of collapse, a risk that the City simply cannot ignore. For the past two weeks the City has offered to Mr. Perialas, and continues to offer, $20,000 towards a solution of his choice, and looks forward to his prompt action. As soon as he addresses the public safety issues present in his building, the City will be very pleased to see Pyramid Sound reopen. For more information on this topic view:
Fact Sheet
Keystone Engineering Report
Dende Engineering Structural Condition Assessment
Declaration Letter of the Building Commissioner

Hydrilla Information

The second of a series of herbicide treatments scheduled for the Cayuga Inlet on June 26, 2012 was successfully completed. The herbicide used in the treatment is Endothal, also known as Aquathol K. This is the same herbicide that was used in the October, 2011 treatment.  The Inlet has been re-opened to boat traffic. 

The Endothal treatment is critical to terminate the growth of Hydrilla before it gets tall enough to be broken apart by boats and paddles as Hydrilla spreads easily by plant fragments.

A different herbicide treatment will be applied incrementally in July through October 2012. Fluridone will be used at very low levels to help kill the entire plant, including the tubers and roots. The Fluridone application will NOT necessitate closing the Inlet. Endothal and Fluridone work by disrupting photosynthesis, the process plants use to convert light into energy. Repeated herbicide treatments will most likely be needed for several years to completely eradicate the plant and tubers from the Inlet.

More details are available at or by contacting Roxanna Johnston, City of Ithaca Watershed Coordinated, 607-273-4680,

The City of Ithaca continues its collaborative efforts with Tompkins County, New York State Parks, the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation and the Cornell Cooperative Extension to eradicate hydrilla from the Cayuga Inlet. Look here to find the latest updates and information on this topic.

City of Ithaca to host Fireworks and Community Celebration Monday, July 2nd

The City of Ithaca will be hosting a new Community Fireworks Celebration at Stewart Park on Monday, July 2nd.  The celebration will run from 6 to 10pm with the fireworks being launched at 9:45pm.

Live music and other entertainment will start at 6pm on the Ballpark Field at Stewart Park. Entertainment for the kids will include a bounce house, face painting, balloon animals, plus games and prizes. All are welcome to join in the picnic fun which is free and open to the public. Food and non-alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase with all proceeds benefiting the new fireworks fund.

Mayor Svante Myrick loves fireworks and spearheaded the efforts to bring this important community celebration back to the City of Ithaca.  "Independence Day has always been my favorite holiday.  It's the one night when every family in the city, regardless of where they live or how much money they have, can all celebrate together - all of us looking up at the same sky." 

The fireworks will be launched from Newman Municipal Golf Course, which will be closed to pedestrian traffic at 8pm.  Limited parking will be available at the Park, so people are encouraged to consider walking, biking, or parking at the nearby schools.  Parking on Rt. 13 is dangerous and not legal.  Violaters will be asked to move, and vehicles will be towed to protect everyone's safety.  You can also take the TCAT bus from Downtown Ithaca to the park and back. 

Viewing will be best from Stewart Park, however the fireworks may also be seen from Cass Park, the Ithaca Farmers Market and other locations throughout the City.

A lead donation has been received from the family of fallen Marine Corporal Christopher Bordoni. Christopher loved fireworks and his family would like to see the event return to Ithaca. A minute of silence will be observed at the event in honor of Corporal Bordoni.

The event will be run at no cost to the City of Ithaca. The fundraising goal has been set at $14,000. Donations are needed and can be made through the City of Ithaca's website at or by dropping them off at City Hall.

In addition, volunteers are being sought to assist with the event. For more information email

City Urges People to Use Caution in Gorge Areas

With the on-set of warm weather, Ithaca's waterfalls and gorges become popular destinations. These areas are beautiful but as natural water bodies, they also have hidden and changing dangers. To ensure public safety, City Officials urge everyone to obey all posted rules and regulations, such as:

  • No swimming, wading, or bathing in any natural waters in the City
  • No rock climbing, or cliff jumping
  • Stay on posted trails

There are hidden rock formations and water currents that can pin even strong swimmers underwater. Weather conditions cause variations in water levels that can also increase danger. The gorge walls are mostly shale that breaks easily and can trap climbers or cause dangerous falls.

Violating these safety regulations put people at risk of serious injury and death and place emergency response workers in danger by performing high risk rescues. People who violate the regulations are subject to arrest.

Ithaca's gorges and trails provide a source of beauty and inspiration. By using good judgment while enjoying these sites, everyone can return home safely.

Yard Waste Collection

The Department of Public Works has resumed curbside collection of yard waste. Yard waste will be collected every other week on your regular trash day (opposite of the recycling schedule) on a separate time schedule. Yard Waste Tags will be required for the disposal of yard waste. Residents may place yard waste at the curb: loose materials must be placed in cans with no lids or biodegradable paper bags that are not tied, and weigh less than 50 pounds. Branches must be tied in bundles that do not exceed 4' in length; individual branches cannot exceed 2" in diameter. Yard Waste Tags can be purchased at City Hall, Greenstar, Oasis, Agway, and the P&C Fresh(East Hill Plaza) for $1.50 per tag or a sheet of 6 for $9.00. Questions can be referred to the Streets & Facilities Division at (607) 272-1718.