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CNY on a roll after Erin Hamlin's Olympic success

By ANNA MEILER

REMSEN, N.Y. (WKTV) -- Remsen may be the heart of Erin Hamlin's support, but the pride spreads all across Central New York.

"We adopted her, you know, and I think everybody in all the little towns around- they did the same thing they adopted her. We wanted her to win and she got a medal. That's all that matters," said Alan Pettengill.

Just south of the Olympian's hometown a banner hangs over the highway. Keep traveling and you'll see posters hanging in Herkimer. In Utica, words of praise scroll across the Stanley Theater's marquee.

"I think we've got a lot to be proud of here," said Jerry Kraus, executive director of the Stanley Theater.

In December, locals gathered to watch Erin Hamlin drop the puck at a Utica Comets game- a proud send-off to the 2014 Winter Olympics.

"I love coming back to Central New York. It's always a good time and people are great. I love having such a solid fan base and I appreciate it," said Hamlin back in December.

Now that she's made history the pride just keeps growing and the Utica Aud is boasting her bronze for all to see.

"It revitalizes the area a bit because everybody is gathering behind it. Everyone wants to talk about Erin Hamlin and what a great thing she did and it's history, so we're all proud of her for it," said Mark Caswell, communications director for the Utica Comets.

This area has been riddled with dismal economic news in past years but is feeling a recent uptick with the construction of the nanotechnology center and the revival of AHL hockey. Now with Hamlin's success, many say Central New York is on a roll.

"When one town gets put on the map, the whole county gets put on the map and that's where it leads to great things," said Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente Jr.

County officials say an olympic sized celebration is in the works for when erin returns.

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