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Local organizations hope PGA Tournament will bring business to area

By Dave Dellecese

VERONA - 100,000 golf fans are expected to hit the links at Atunyote next week, to catch a glimpse of some great golf.

Mohawk Valley EDGE and the Oneida County Convention and Visitors Bureau want those fans to also catch a glimpse of what Central New York has to offer.

The two organizations are using Turning Stone Resort and Casino's big attraction and spreading the wealth across all of Oneida County.

Mohawk Valley EDGE and the Oneida County Convention and Visitors Bureau together have invested $40,000 on a new campaign called "Get in the Swing".

Golf Digest has named the Mohawk Valley one of the top ten locations in the country to play golf, and EDGE and the Visitors Bureau are using that ranking in its favor.

Together, officials with both groups, developed a DVD that will be passed out at trade shows all over the country.

The goal is three fold:

1) Show off the great golf courses.

2) Take a look at the other activities like the Baseball Hall of Fame or climbing Bald Mountain in the Adirondacks. Not to mention, the areas amazing chicken riggies.

3) Economic development. Both groups felt the best time to get this message out is when the Golf Channel airs the Turning Stone Resort Championship.

"When you look at the cities where the PGA Golf Tournaments of this calibar are played, you don't see Oneida County," said Mark Cherry of the Convention and Visitors Bureau. "You don't often see the smaller cities like this. You're talking Chicago...you're talking New York City...you're talking large destinations."

The Oneida Indian Nation loves the idea of the video, and officials have requested 100 copies to pass out to the travel writers that will be in town for the tournament.

Now, in addition to the "Get in the Swing" DVD, Mohawk Valley EDGE and the Visitors Bureau have set up a booth at the Atunyote Golf Course.

They will take turns showcasing the region...everything from the great housing market here to what restaurants they should visit when they leave the green for the night.

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