About Us


by Tim Munn

Contrary to its name, Shortsville New York has a long list of historical contributions. Once the gateway for early fur traders who navigated the many streams that would transverse the land, Shortsville would be settled in 1804 by Theophilus Short. Originally referred to as Short Mill, the rushing waters of the Canandaigua outlet would provide enough power to maintain four kinds of mills(flour, paper, woolen and a distillery). Later during the 19th and the early 20th century Shortsville would house three national manufacturers, the Empire Grain Drill Company(1850), the Shortsville Wheel Company(1889) and the Papec Farm Machinery Company(1909). Throughout history many Shortsville residents have achieved national recognition with the two most notable being Myron Mason Buck, Railroad inventor and founder of the worlds largest railroad supply house in St. Louis during the building of the Great Transcontinental Railroad, and Philip Bredesen, The 48th Governor for the State of Tennessee.

Visit the Shortsville Website!


From Village of Manchester's website

The village has the honor of being the oldest settlement in the Town of Manchester. The first settlers arrived in 1793 and the first deed was issued to Joel Gillet on June 23, 1796. He built the first log home, just west of the village cemetery. The other early settlers were Stephen Phelps, Joel Jared, Ambrose Phelps and Deacon John McLouth.

The town of Farmington was divided in half on March 21, 1821. The new Eastern town was named Burt, after a member of the Legislature that had sponsored the bill. This name was not liked by town residents and on April 16, 1822, it was changed to Manchester. The 1890's saw changes come to the hamlet of Manchester, after 80 years as a small quiet mill town. The arrival of the Lehigh Valley Railroad and the choice of Manchester as a division point with a round house, ice house and rail yard, put additional pressure on the residents.

On August 16 1892, at the barber shop of John Moore, the vote passed 71 to 0 for incorporation. Dr. John R. Pratt, became the President of the Village and William Wilson, Walter Mason and Levi Redfield were the Trustees. Village improvements were started and by 1893 sidewalks were complete on Main and State Streets.

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School Districts

Information from the district website.

Manchester-Shortsville Central School, also known as Red Jacket, is a progressive school district located 30 miles southeast of Rochester at New York State Thruway Exit #43, in the heart of the beautiful Finger Lakes Region. The Thruway exit near the geographic center of the school district provides easy access to the Finger Lakes, Lake Ontario, and the cities of Rochester, Syracuse and Buffalo.

The District includes a K-5 elementary building and a 6-8 middle school and 9-12 high school on a centralized campus. Recognizing the changing nature of education and the need to utilize modern research, technology and learning theory, Manchester-Shortsville is committed to a strong and active program of staff development encouraging professional growth.

Red Jacket draws its students primarily from the villages of Manchester and Shortsville. These villages, in central Ontario County, are located near the northern shore of Canandaigua Lake with its beautiful parks and recreation facilities.

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Wild Water Derby

The Wild Water Derby started back in the mid 1970’s and ran annually for more than three decades. After a nine year hiatus and almost two years of planning, the Derby was reintroduced in 2006.

Today's Wild Water Derby is designed to be a fun event that the whole family can enjoy. The race always proves to be very entertaining, especially the homemade rafts as they battle for the coveted "Most Entertaining Raft" award. There are numerous vendors displaying their local artisans work and this year you will even get the fine aroma of Starbucks coffee as they will be serving up some nice warm beverages. Keep in mind the Derby has changed to become more family oriented, there are no alcoholic beverages allowed at the Derby. In order to keep the event a family event and the safest event possible we ask that everyone comply with this request.

Although a few things have changed, but one thing has not and that is proceeds from this event benefit non-profit organizations such as Lions Club, Rotary International, 4H, Youth Sports, YMCA, Church Organizations and the Chamber of Commerce community efforts. Also one of our sponsors, Starbucks is donating a portion of their proceeds to "Make Your Mark" a grant program which is focusing on a continued effort of cleaning the Canandaigua Outlet. So your attendance and support of the Wild Water Derby will not only provide you with some fun entertainment but you will also be helping the community and the environment.

Visit the Wild Water Derby website!


When you take Exit 43 off the New York State Thruway, you're on a gateway to Upstate New York's many treasured attractions. To the south on Route 21 discover Canandaigua Lake, one of the most scenic gems of the state's five Finger Lakes; the splendor of the rolling Bristol Hills and Valley for the sightseers of brilliant autumn colors and a major attraction for winter skiers; and the grape-growing mecca for New York State's fine wines. To the north on Route 21 you can journey to a number of nearby towns and villages bordering the historic Erie Canal; view some excellent vantage points of Lake Ontario; or visit Hill Cumorah. Only minutes away to the west on Route 96, you can test your luck at the popular 777 Finger Lakes Gaming & Racetrack..

Chamber Bylaws can be found here