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8 Interesting Things You Didn’t Know About Vacationing In New York State

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I love New York.

Everyone knows the iconic New York State logo and slogan which was designed by American graphic designer Milton Glaser in 1977.

But personally, I really do love New York. Having grown up 1/2 hour from the New York State border, I have spent plenty of time in this great state.

My travels to New York State usually consisted of a drive straight through the state on I-81 on my way to Florida, or day trips to Watertown or Syracuse for some cross-border shopping.  I’ve also been on two whirlwind trips to New York City.

Last night I had the pleasure of spending a couple of hours immersed in New York State – without leaving Ottawa.


My friend Lyne, from the Ottawa Mommy Club passed this great invitation on to me, and I attended this reception, at Ottawa’s magnificent Museum of Nature, with my friend Vanessa from Turnipseed Travel. We spent our time talking with some pretty fantastic folks from the New York State tourism industry that represent all areas of this fabulous state.




These New York State friends really know how to put on a wonderful, informative event. Not only did we get to listen to some fascinating talks from each representative in attendance, we got to munch on so many delicious hors d’oeuvres, like these:


We got a chance to wander around the room and talk to each and every representative on hand.  It was during these chats that I realized I didn’t know as much about New York State as I thought I did. I learned some pretty incredible facts about the various regions of New York State, facts that I thought many of you might find fascinating.

So…I put together my own list of interesting things I didn’t know about vacationing in New York State.  Hopefully it inspires you to visit there one day!

8 Interesting Things You Didn’t Know About Vacationing In New York State

1. When in Syracuse (a city that once had a booming salt industry) enjoy a bite or two of their popular regional dish “Salt Potatoes”. Boiling potatoes in salt forms a skin on the potatoes resulting in a crust that seals the potatoes. The result is a delicious, seasoned, creamy interior.

2. Love toys? You need to visit Rochester! This bustling city is home to many great things, including The Strong National Museum Of Play/National Toy Hall Of Fame. A great place to visit – for both little AND big kids like me!

3. From the state that tells us all to say “I Love New York” comes that iconic redhead Lucille Ball! That’s right – the ” I Love Lucy” star was born and raised in Jamestown, NY. For you Lucy fans out there, the Lucy Desi Museum and Center For Comedy is one of those “must-see” attractions when visiting Jamestown! To top it off…they host an annual Lucille Ball Comedy Festival every summer. This year it is being hosted by Jerry Seinfeld!

4. Lake Placid, in the heart of the Adirondacks, has SO much more to offer than just being the site of the 1980 Olympics. Yes, this beautiful town has a lot to offer Olympics fans, however, this area is full of other great things to do and explore. Lake Placid has a vibrant arts scene, miles of magnificent hiking trails, and scores of winter and summer outdoor activities.

5. New York State has over 100 craft breweries and Central New York is known as America’s Craft Brew Destination!

6. New York State is also home to over 400 wineries. I’m still partial to Ontario Wine Country (of course!), but this number of wineries is pretty impressive!

7. Destiny USA, located in Syracuse, New York, is the 6th largest shopping centre in the United States. This giant shopping centre also houses numerous fun attractions, restaurants and other services. We were lucky to be able to visit Destiny USA last summer. It’s amazing! If you go, give yourself at least one full day there, it really is huge!

8. Take a bite out of “the other big apple”. The Cortland apple was developed in Geneva, New York, and named after nearby Cortland County.

Speaking of Cortland, I also discovered last evening, that there is a terrific resort in Cortland, New York, called the Greek Peak Mountain Resort/Hope Lake Lodge & Indoor Waterpark.  You’ll likely get to hear more about this resort from me later this year as I won a 2 night stay at this magnificent looking resort! I won this prize by answering a trivia question.

Finally….my “skill” at remembering trivial facts came in handy!

For those of you interested in all the great things New York State has to offer, follow @i_love_ny on Twitter and like I Love NY on Facebook.

A big thank you to all our New York State friends who made the trek north to join us here in Ottawa!





Disclosure:  Canadian Blog House was not obligated to write this post, but wanted to share some fun things we learned about New York State with our readers. All opinions are our own.

  1. April 14, 2015

    Brenda A

    We would love to see Lake Placid. It is on our Must Camp At list. So many varied places to see in NY!

    • April 14, 2015


      Me too, Brenda! I have heard it is just so beautiful there. I was astounded by how much there is to see and do around the state. When people think New York, like me, they often thing of NYC, but there is just so much more to New York State! Thanks for stopping by!

  2. April 14, 2015


    I need to drive to Syracuse in a couple of weeks but i have never been – is it an easy drive? How long from Ottawa?

    • April 14, 2015


      Oh it’s a really easy drive, Joy! Take the 416 to the 401 and then take the exit for Hill Island. Once on I-81 you stay on it until you get to Syracuse. It takes about 3 hours to drive there from Ottawa (depending on the border). Hope it’s for a fun trip, Joy! Thanks for stopping by!

  3. April 15, 2015


    I didn’t know that about the Cortland apple – how cool is that!? I think I’m overdue for a New York roadtrip – there is so much to see and do in one small state!

    • April 15, 2015


      Yes, I always wondered about the origin of the name of that apple and wondered if it came from that area of NY state. I agree Vanessa…so much to do there! I had NO idea until now 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

  4. April 15, 2015

    paula schuck

    Oh you had me going there. I thought OMG sandy drove to New York! Cool. It looks like this was a great event. I am ready for another trip any time soon!! Maybe this could be the spot. I hear a lot of great things about Syracuse.

    • April 15, 2015


      Hehehe…well I have, but not the other night 🙂 Although, that would have been fun! Yes….you should check out Syracuse one of these days. Your kids would probably love Destiny USA! So would you for that matter…and the shopping! Would make for a great family trip! Thanks for stopping by!

  5. April 15, 2015

    Randa @ TBK

    Heading to New York is a dream of mine, I have always wanted to go since I was a little girl. Of course I want to see NYC but I have heard so many amazing things about New York State.

    • April 15, 2015


      I hope you get there one day, Randa. Everyone should see NYC at least once in their lifetime…and enjoy some of the beauty and fun things to do in the rest of the state! Thanks for stopping by!

  6. April 15, 2015


    I keep thinking I need to head this way. I have drove through but that is it. NY is not far from me and I bet my kids would love it

    • April 15, 2015


      Oh you should, Kim. Yes, it’s not that far, really. Makes for a nice drive. Hope you get the chance to take the kids one day soon! Thanks for stopping by!

  7. April 15, 2015


    My kids loved NYC. It is such a fun city. We loved Lake Placid.

    • April 17, 2015


      NYC is definitely amazing, OFW! I would love to visit Lake Placid. It’s on my bucket list! Thanks for stopping by!

  8. April 20, 2015

    Rachel G

    I’ve never heard of the “salt potato” dish, but as a potato lover, they sure sound tasty! I’ve never been to the state of NY either, sadly.

    • April 26, 2015


      I hadn’t heard of salt potatoes either, Rachel! You’re right though…they sound tasty! You’ll definitely have to try to get to NY State one of these days. So much to do! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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