Try Something New to Beat the Winter Blues
The darkest days of winter are upon us, when even people who love to see the snow fly can feel a little antsy. If you’re a winter sports enthusiast, you’re in the right place—Oneida County has no end of options. Chilly days are also the perfect time for art-lovers to get out to area museums and catch up on the latest exhibits. Think you’ve already seen and done it all? Dig a little deeper into the activities Oneida County has to offer. Chances are, you’ll discover something new to explore—maybe it’s new to the area or perhaps it’s a hidden gem that’s been here the whole time.
ROOT FOR A NEW SPORTS TEAM
Utica City FC
Show your support for Utica’s newest team. Utica City FC is a member of the North American Indoor Soccer League, which formed in 2008 and is comprised of teams from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The team, formerly the Syracuse Silver Knights, moved to Utica in 2018. There’s still time to catch a game this season—see the full schedule on their website. Home matches are played at Adirondack Bank Center, where concession stands offering pizza, burgers, wings, beer, and more are open on game days. Follow the team on social media to get to know the players.
Adirondack Bank Center: 400 Oriskany Street W, Utica
WARM UP WITH HEARTY COMFORT FOOD
A point everyone can agree on is that there’s no shortage of good Italian restaurants in Oneida County. On that same note, there’s always room for one or two more. Check out the newest additions:
One Genny Pizzeria & Restaurant
A hip and friendly restaurant serving fresh pizza straight from the brick oven is just the thing to cure the winter blues. Better yet, One Genny is located in the heart of New Hartford, providing the perfect excuse to get re-acquainted with the village if it’s been a while since your last visit. The menu is loaded with favorites like meatball tunnels, calzones, and an Italian ribeye sandwich topped with long hots that is said to be divine. The bar is stocked with a hearty selection of craft beers. Visit One Genny’s Facebook page for news of special events, including trivia night, beer & wing specials, and live music.
1 Genesee Street, New Hartford
You can’t go wrong here. Chesterfield’s in Utica has been a local staple for more than 30 years. Now they have a second location with the same high level of quality they’ve always delivered to your table. At Tavolo, guests can still order the Utica greens that Chesterfield’s is famous for, as well as signature dishes like chicken riggies. But with the dining landscape evolving, Tavolo wants to bring fresh new ideas to the area, too. Coal-fired pizzas and local beers on tap are part of the new offerings.
131 N. Genesee Street, Utica
BRUSH UP ON LOCAL HISTORY
Oneida County is rich in history, much of it telling the origin story of the United States. When the weather warms up, one way to follow the region’s history is on your bicycle, by following one of the dozens of Bike Thru History Trails that are spread throughout the Mohawk Valley. But until the spring thaw, visit one of the area’s excellent historical centers where you can brush up on history and stay warm at the same time. These historical museums are far from new to the region but may be overlooked in favor of larger, more popular museums.
Oneida County History Center
Learn the history that makes Oneida County unique, from the earliest Native American inhabitants, to the Revolutionary War battles, to how we got to today. There is a treasure trove of information here, especially for local history buffs. The research library holds hundreds of thousands of documents, books, and images, and historical exhibits are always on display. See “New York and Utica in the Great War” to understand more about Oneida County’s role in World War I. You can also take a stroll through old Utica via the “Downtown at its Best” exhibit. Admission is free; $3 donation suggested.
1608 Genesee Street, Utica
Rome Historical Society
The idea for this local history museum was conceived way back in 1936 and since then, they’ve pursued their mission to preserve and present the history of Rome, NY. Visitors can browse items documenting the history of local and regional families and businesses from the colonial days to the present. Check their website for a list of lectures, book signings, and other events. Current exhibits feature the Revolutionary War, the Erie Canal, Griffiss Air Force Base, and industrial history. Admission is free. Donations accepted.
200 Church Street, Rome
The USS Oriskany was an aircraft carrier that served in both the Korean and Vietnam Wars. It was nicknamed Mighty-O and in 2006, it was retired and sunk to the bottom of the sea. Now, it serves as an artificial reef off the coast of Florida. These are just some of the fascinating facts you’ll learn at the Oriskany Museum. You’ll see the ship’s starboard anchor on display, and artifacts from its active duty days that have been donated by U.S. Navy shipmates and their families. In addition to maritime history, the museum specializes in the Battle of Oriskany, which took place in 1777. They also feature exhibits on the Village of Oriskany. Admission is free.
420 Utica Street, Oriskany