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High Falls Center reopens

Rochester, N.Y. Considered a gem of the Flower City, The High Falls Center and Museum is back open.

I'm very happy the center is still open, Rochester resident Michael Rinasz said.

Rinasz came to the center when it first opened in 1992, when he was 12 years old. 

Due to money problems, the city ended its contract with the previous operator of the center, which closed in June.

Two months later, the city decided to change gears, creating a new partnership with the city public library and historian Christine Ridarsky.

I think it's really important that we have some sort of visitor's center in Rochester, Ridarsky said. There are a lot of people interested in heritage tourism.

The books and art gallery are gone, but Ridarsky said visitors can still expect to learn about the city's rich history.

When people come in here, they can expect to walk through the museum, see our displays that talk about the history of water power, and how influential water power was in the development of Rochester, Ridarsky said.

One of the big changes you'll notice is that room that housed the gift shop will now showcase historical exhibits.

If there was any doubt about how much this center is needed, you can find proof in the signatures from around the world, from South Carolina to Virginia - even Australia.

They really are hungry for information about Rochester. They want to know what to see, what to do, where to eat, Ridarsky said.

It's more than that for Rinasz, who can now bring his two young sons to the center.

We were very happy to know that we could stop in here and I could share some of the things I played with, with my kids, Rinasz said.

Items from the gift shop and other artifacts were moved by the previous operator, some were sold to area organizations.

Ridarsky said the city will evaluate the centers current facility to determine how to update it or if it will stay at the same location.

Alexis Arnold, 13WHAM-TV
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