Ring of Fire around the Lakes

It's a "ring of fire!" - Finger Lakes style. Creating a ring of fire around the lakes is not a new tradition, but the focus varies from town to town. Marking the unofficial end to summer, the celebration is held starting at 9 p.m. on the Saturday of Labor Day weekend. On Canandaigua Lake, the first fire is lit at the top of Bare Hill overlooking the lake. Shoreline residents then light a fire or flare that creates a ring around the entire lake.

ring-of-fire-canandaigua-peopleThe Labor Day Weekend Ring of Fire has a historical context. The people of the Seneca celebrated Genundowa (Festival of Lights) where lake fires of tobacco were lit to express gratitude for being saved from the Great Snake and for a bountiful harvest, good hunting, and fishing.

Honeoye and Keuka Lakes are famous for their "rings of fire" too.

Regardless of the reason for the celebration, a Ring of Fire around the lakes is a stunning celebratory display that will be emblazoned in your memory.

Looking for a ring of fire in another season? On Honeoye and Conesus Lakes, the Independence Day celebration is ushered in with a ring of fire. While Honeoye's lightings typically take place between 9 – 10 p.m., residents celebrating around Conesus Lake light their flares and fires at 10 p.m.