July 16, 2016
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Announces Marketing Campaign to Promote the 2016 Great New York State Fair

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First-Ever Television Commercials Promoting the Fair to Run in Media Markets Across the State 

Governor Cuomo Highlights Upstate Economic Resurgence at Inaugural Onondaga Cup & LakeFest

Governor Cuomo and Syracuse Media Group Compete in “Governor’s Cup” to Support the Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation and Cancer Research


Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced a marketing campaign for the 2016 Great New York State Fair, which will be hosted in the reimagined State Fairgrounds. The campaign features first-ever television advertisements that will be shown across the state to promote the fair. Governor Cuomo made the announcement while visiting Central New York today – first touring the Syracuse Nationals Car Show at the State Fairgrounds, and later competing in the “Governor’s Cup” boat race to benefit the Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation as part of the inaugural Onondaga Cup and LakeFest. 

“The State Fair is a central piece of New York’s rich history,” Governor Cuomo said. “From the Syracuse Nationals Classic Car Show, to live performances and boundless exhibits, the Fairgrounds have long-captured the hearts and minds of its visitors. This new campaign will not only highlight the recent enhancements, but also ensure the Fair remains a time-honored tradition for generations to come. Our investments to reimagine the Fairgrounds and revive Onondaga Lake are creating a powerful economic synergy for the region, and the revival of the regatta celebrates the next chapter in Central New York’s success story.”


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First-Ever Television Advertisements to Promote the 2016 State Fair

To encourage residents from across the entire state to attend the 2016 Great New York State Fair, the State is launching a marketing campaign highlighting the significant changes of the State Fairgrounds this year. The campaign features a television commercial that will run in markets across the state later this summer.

This is the first time the State Fair will be promoted with television commercials across the state, bringing it closer to achieve the Governor’s goal of 1 million visitors this season. The 2016 Great New York State Fair theme is “Find Your Great” – setting the State Fair apart from all other fairs by using “Find Your…” as a recurring theme for various attractions. This year’s Fair runs August 25 to September 5. Advance sale tickets are available here.

This campaign will supplement the Fair's annual marketing campaign to provide broader exposure and advertise in markets which are not normally targeted by the fair. The campaign involves television, radio, specialty print and digital advertising, as well as upgrades to the Fair's website and phone app. 

This year’s State Fair will be hosted in a completely reimagined 375-acre State Fairgrounds, announced by Governor Cuomo last year. The Governor’s $50 million plan enhances the quality of the fairgoer’s experience and provides greater economic benefits for the region. Improvements also include the dramatic new Main Gate, the arches of which recall the carriage gate that greeted fairgoers in 1900; a larger, 15-acre Wade Shows Midway that will hold more rides than ever; a modernized visitor experience with cell phone charging stations and resting areas; and the brand new 315-site Empire RV Park with underground water, sewer and electrical service. The new Fairgrounds also includes new flexible park space and various parking and pedestrian safety improvements, which altogether will better position the New York State Fairgrounds as a premier year-round, multi-use facility that can attract more events and visitors from across the nation. More information on the revitalization is available here and renderings can be viewed here.

Governor’s Cup at Inaugural Onondaga Cup & LakeFest

To kick off the inaugural Onondaga Cup and LakeFest, Governor Cuomo led a team of administration officials in an eight-person canoe against Tim Kennedy, President of Syracuse Media Group, Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney, Juli Boeheim, and other local participants. The race included a wager of $1,000 to the Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation to support underprivileged children in Central New York, and provide funding for cancer research and advocacy. Following the race, both teams agreed to each donate $1,000 to the cause.

The Governor’s Cup marked the first event in a series of day-long activities at the Onondaga Cup & LakeFest. The day included rowing, kayak and paddleboard competitions, as well as a festival featuring food, beverage, wine tastings and more. The world’s largest rubber duck – spanning 61 feet and weighing eleven tons – was also on the lake as part of the event.

“Governor Cuomo has shown a relentless commitment to Onondaga County and all of Central New York,” said Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney. “From awarding $500 million to accelerate our economic momentum under the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, to investing $50 million to transform the State Fairgrounds, Governor Cuomo has brought a surge of optimism that is a vital part of our region’s comeback. Today's regatta is the start of a wonderful tradition and I look forward to taking part in the Governor's Cup for many years to come."

“Today’s competition was a fitting way to mark the revival of Onondaga Lake and support the important work of both the Jim and Juli Boeheim Foundation and the Onondaga Lake Conservation Corps,” Tim Kennedy, President of the Syracuse Media Group, said. “The Governor’s Cup was a great addition to the inaugural Onondaga Cup & LakeFest, and this spirited match truly celebrated the significant cultural and historical vigor of Central New York.”

Teams each raced with one eight-person canoe:

Team Cuomo

  • Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
  • Kelly Cummings, Deputy Chief of Staff and Senior Advisor
  • Alphonso David, Counsel to the Governor
  • Robert Mujica, New York State Budget Director
  • Matthew Driscoll, Commissioner of the State Department of Transportation
  • Stephanie Benton, Director of Governor’s Offices 
  • Member of the New York State Police

Team CNY

  • Tim Kennedy, President of the Syracuse Media Group
  • Juli Boeheim, wife of SU basketball coach Jim Boeheim and vice president of the Jim & Juli Boeheim Foundation
  • Jim Bright, President at Dunk & Bright Furniture Co.
  • Jim Fox, Chief Executive Officer of O'Brien & Gere Cos.
  • Joanie Mahoney, Onondaga County Executive
  • Jason Smoral, General Manager of the Syracuse Chiefs
  • Al Stirpe, State Assemblyman

The Onondaga Cup & LakeFest revives a storied tradition and marks the first Syracuse regatta in more than 20 years. Syracuse University’s varsity crew team won the Intercollegiate Rowing Association’s national championship in 1978 on their hometown lake in Onondaga County. In the 1990s, the IRA regatta moved to Camden, N.J.

Contact the Governor's Press Office
Contact the Governor's Press Office