Ritchie Applauds Gov’s Efforts to Draw Canadian Tourists to NY

Suggestion by Senator Ritchie Included in Governor’s

New Plan to Boost Tourism

State Senator Patty Ritchie is applauding Governor Cuomo’s announcement of a number of new initiatives aimed at drawing Canadian tourists to New York State and boosting cross-border commerce.

The efforts were unveiled Wednesday at the Capitol during the Governor’s first-ever New York State Tourism Summit.  As a roundtable participant at the event,  Senator Ritchie spoke about opportunities for expanding and better showcasing tourism in Central and Northern New York.

Specifically, Senator Ritchie —who is a member of the Senate's Cultural Affairs, Tourism, Parks and Recreation Committee—spoke about identifying ways to target Canadian consumers, and suggested improving signage to highlight destinations in Central and Northern New York. 

“From the world-famous Thousand Islands to the shores of Lake Ontario, the tourism offerings in the Central and Northern New York regions are truly remarkable,” said Senator Ritchie. 

“Whether you like to boat, fish, hunt, ski or sightsee, there’s so much you can do in Upstate New York and there are so many more ways we can work together to promote our attractions—especially to our Canadian neighbors—draw more travelers to our area, create jobs and boost the economy overall.”

Included in the Governor’s plans are efforts to establish welcome centers at international borders as well as state line crossings, working with the Department of Transpiration on new and improved signage, and establishing “Taste of NY” outlets featuring locally produced agriculture and food products including wines and cheeses.

These initiatives are part of a lengthy list, including a record $60 million investment in “I Love NY” tourism promotion efforts, an ambitious new Fall tourism promotion campaign, and partnerships with downstate transportation agencies, like the MTA and Port Authority, to promote Upstate destinations to tens of millions of tourists and commuters.

It’s estimated that 1.5 million tourists from across the United States take an overnight trip to the Thousand Islands region every year, spending an estimated $456 million annually during these visits.

In addition, in the Thousand Islands, tourism supports an estimated 8,606 jobs and generates roughly $194 million in wages annually. 

(Senator Ritchie is pictured speaking at Wednesday’s event in the above photo with Assembly Tourism Chair Margaret Markey and Jonathan Tisch, Chairman of Loews Hotels & Resorts and Co-owner of the New York Giants)