tourism

Dennis McCarthy

If you cross the international border between the U.S. and Canada by land, there’s an official border crossing.

But if you're traveling across the border on a boat in the St. Lawrence River, the process isn’t so clear.

The border  splits the river, threading through the Thousand Islands.

For over a century, this was a “soft” border, barely acknowledged by generations of boaters.

Julia Botero / WRVO News

A cruise ship crashed into a lock on the St. Lawrence River Thursday night, injuring 17 people. According to the U.S. Coast Guard, the 286-foot Saint Laurent hit a wall in the Eisenhower Lock along the St. Lawrence in Massena, just after 9 p.m. Thursday.

BlackRiverny.com

 

The Adirondacks and the St. Lawrence River are top-notch destinations for people looking to fish and boat in the summertime. The Black River, which winds through Lewis and Jefferson counties, doesn’t enjoy that reputation.

Towns along the river want to change that, but they have a big job ahead of them. For a century the river has been used for industry, not tourism. Now, the river is the process of a transformation. 

Join us for a showing of a new documentary produced by WPBS-TV in Watertown for the Path Through History project. This 30-minute high definition film entitled "Trailblaze a Path Through History: Central New York" is locally produced and focuses on the many stories that established central New York's history. The stories uncover a trail of innovation and reform that makes its way through Madison, Oswego, Cortland, Cayuga and Onondaga counties.

Destiny USA

Tourism is growing in central New York, up 17 percent in the last five years, according to industry officials. And at a tourism roundtable in Syracuse Wednesday they agreed there are still more ways to boost tourism dollars.  

Travel spending in the five counties of central New York amounts to nearly $1.2 billion, employing 25,000 people. So it’s a huge industry already, according to David Holder of the Syracuse Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Julia Botero / WRVO News

Clayton welcomed a slew of new visitors last week. A luxury cruise ship on its maiden voyage from Montreal stopped at the town’s docks. The ship was filled with nearly 200 tourists from France, and most on board were seeing the Thousand Islands for the first time.

The MS St. Laurent drifted down the St. Lawrence River and came to rest in Clayton just around 9 on Thursday morning. The ship is an eye-catcher, docked in the center of the village, its royal blue hull contrasting with the colorful row of Adirondack chairs facing the river,  

Cuomo encourages snowmobilers to visit the Tug Hill

Feb 20, 2015
governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Governor Andrew Cuomo has waived the registration fee for out of state snowmobiles during the weekend of March 7th. Cuomo made the announcement in Lowville Thursday before heading out on a snowmobile tour through the Tug Hill.

Ken Curtis / Flickr

The village of Cooperstown is floating the idea of changing its tourism accommodation law, targeting nine businesses that it says were grandfathered into the village's current rule.

Cooperstown Mayor Jeff Katz says the law requires people renting out their homes to visitors to stay on site so that the property is monitored. But the nine businesses don't have to follow the law.

Recently, Katz says disturbances at several of those non-conforming businesses have caused year-round residents to complain.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

President Barack Obama wants to make it easier for foreigners to visit the United States so they can come and spend more money at tourist sites. The president visited the baseball hall of fame in Cooperstown Thursday, where he pitched tourism as an economic asset.

Cooperstown Bats is a store that has a symbiotic relationship with the National Baseball Hall of Fame across the street. Thursday morning, a high school baseball team was in town for a game at the hall’s Doubleday Field, but the players bought some souvenir bats first.

Cooperstown gets ready for president's visit

May 22, 2014
candyschwartz / Flickr

The village of Cooperstown is preparing for one of its most high-profile tourists ever.

President Barack Obama will visit the National Baseball Hall of Fame there later today to promote tourism. Obama says tourism is an export and he wants to make it easier for foreign visitors to travel to the U.S.

He picked the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York to highlight tourism’s impact. Cooperstown is a "one-stoplight town" that attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors, and sustains hundreds of jobs. 

candyschwartz / Flickr

President Barack Obama is scheduled to visit the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown Thursday to promote tourism. Obama said in his weekly address Saturday that tourism is an export, and that when foreign visitors come to the United States it grows the economy.

Lynn Herzig works with chambers of commerce and businesses throughout the region to promote tourism. He says the president's push to bring international visitors in is exactly what the region and state need.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

The Erie Canal and New York's smaller waterways are open for their 190th consecutive season connecting New York Harbor with the Great Lakes and other points west and north.

The 524 miles of waterways drove the rise of upstate New York's cities two centuries ago. Now, the canal is mostly a tourism and recreation path.

Apostolos / Flickr

While most of upstate New York is waiting for sunshine and warm temperatures instead of more cold and snow, the region's winter tourism industry is singing a different tune.

One of those spots is the Greek Peak Mountain Resort in Cortland, where co-partners Marc Stemerman and John Meier say business has spiked compared to last year.

Syracuse-area Rep. Dan Maffei has some concerns about central New York’s economic recovery, which is why he held a job fair in Liverpool earlier this week.

Maffei says compared to where the central New York economy was a few years ago, things are getting better. But he says more needs to be done.

"It’s just not expanding enough to give me confidence that it’s going go be stable and sort of a healthy economy,” Maffei said.

Catherine Loper / WRVO

It's a busy time in the town of Clayton. New businesses, infrastructure and public amenities hold the promise of more tourism, a stronger economy, and a better quality of life for locals.

NYS Governor's Office

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s name is frequently mentioned as a possible presidential contender in 2016 -- that is if Hillary Clinton doesn’t run. But first, the governor has to think about  his 2014 re-election race and how to shore up his support in upstate, where he’s been flagging in the polls.   

During the past several weeks, Cuomo has spent much of his time in upstate New York.

He paddled in a whitewater rafting contest he organized in the Adirondacks, to boost tourism.

Thousands of fishing fans are heading north to the St. Lawrence River this weekend for the Bassmasters Elite Series tournament, the top professional tour for bass anglers.

On Thursday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo showed up to do some cheering of his own.

Waddington’s Whittaker Park has become a village of food and craft stands and tackle shops to accommodate the 10,000 Bassmasters fans expected this weekend.

The main stage is where the anglers weigh in their catch each afternoon at 3 p.m. And that’s where Cuomo took the stage, the championship trophy to his left.

Ellen Abbott/WRVO

The first year of Destiny USA has been a boon to the tourism industry in central New York, according to tourism officials. David Holder, president of the Syracuse Convention and Visitors Bureau says hotel occupancy figures show a marked increase in visitors when the bureau promotes the mall/entertainment venue. He says the geographic origin of those visitors also tells the tale.

NYS Governor's Office

Gov. Andrew Cuomo was in the Adirondack Park yesterday, where he joined some of the state's most powerful politicians and business leaders on a whitewater rafting trip down the Indian River.

Cuomo says his "Adirondack Challenge," held in the town of Indian Lake, is meant to draw attention and more visitors to destinations in Upstate New York.

"I want to expose this part of the state of New York," Cuomo said. "It is a magnificent part of the state, as you can see. Tourism is a big business for us, it's a big part of the economy and this has great potential."

Tourism Economics

According to new research, tourism spending rose across every region of New York state last year, with overall growth of more than six percent. Traveler spending reached a new high of nearly $60 billion statewide and upstate New York, in particular, did well.

The biggest areas for growth upstate were central New York, Niagara, and the Thousand Islands, with a bump of at least five percent in each region.

But Adam Sacks, lead author of the report and president of Tourism Economics, says the real indicator of the industry’s importance lies in job growth.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

Older Canadians will be able to spend more time in the United States under a proposal floated by New York Democratic Sen. Charles Schumer.

Right now, Canadians can stay in the U.S. up to six months. Many retired Canadians use up that time at winter homes in the Southwest or Florida.

By creating a retiree visa that would allow for eight months spent south of the border, Schumer is hopeful it will translate into more short trips to places closer to the Canadian border, like the Finger Lakes region.

Daniel Robison/Innovation Trail

Gov. Andrew Cuomo outlined the details of his plan to site three gambling casinos upstate Thursday. Cuomo, joined by union and business leaders, and representatives from county governments, offered more details of his plan to build three new gambling casinos. Cuomo says he wants to limit the locations to upstate regions for now, to prop up the failing economy. The governor says upstate needs jobs like it needs oxygen. And he says having a downstate location would devalue the upstate centers.

Ashley Hassett

The Maid of the Mist tour boats have been working around Niagara Falls for 167 years. Development has just resumed on the operation’s new maintenance dock, after delays caused by local opposition.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s is proposing a border crossing fee for those traveling into the country from Canada. So far the idea is drawing opposition from representatives across New York state.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s is proposing a border crossing fee for those traveling into the country from Canada. So far the idea is drawing opposition from representatives across New York state.

Funding for a program to promote locally grown produce through a network of duty-free stores across New York has been axed from the final version of the state's budget.

Adirondack Regional Tourism Council

Tourism professionals in upstate New York are applauding Gov. Andrews Cuomo’s commitment to the region. In order to augment upstate economic growth, the governor has set aside $7 million in the budget for promotion and marketing initiatives.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO

Last year was a record year for attendance at the Rosamond Gifford Zoo in Syracuse. Several factors combined to make the zoo the place to go last year.

License Some rights reserved by Håkan Dahlström / Creative Commons License

During his State of the State address on Wednesday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo offered more details on a plan for casino gambling in New York state. If the governor gets his way, the proposed new casinos would come to upstate first.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO

You don't need a U.S. passport to take in the sights of central New York this summer, but officials in Madison County are hoping a passport of a different kind encourages visitors to their community.

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