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NIAGARA FALLS – Maid of the Mist VII, topping the scales at 125 tons, was safely hoisted from the Lower Niagara River this morning and dry-docked at its new home on the American side of the river.

The carefully orchestrated lift took about 40 minutes from start to finish. A second boat, Maid of the Mist VI, was scheduled to be dry-docked later today.

While this work will be done in a single day, more than 10 months of nearly around-the-clock construction work went into the effort to convert the rooms of the former Schoellkopf Power Station into a suitable site for the boats.

“It’s a great day, We’re happy to be here and continue with the Maid of the Mist,” said James V. Glynn, chairman and CEO of the Maid of the Mist Corp.

Glynn stood among 40 other spectators watching as the first of the two boats was settled onto a dozen steel and wood cribs on a concrete landing.

Maid of the Mist was forced to find a new winter home for its boats when it lost its bid to continue doing businesses on the Canadian side of the river. Its two other boats on the Canadian side have been retired.

email: lmichel@buffnews.com