Utica, NY: City with a Warm Heart

A couple of decades ago, Utica, New York, was dying, by even its residents diagnosis: a popular bumper sticker in the ‘90s read “Last One Out of Utica, Please Turn Out the Lights.” Once a bustling textile city perched on edge of the Erie Canal, Utica lost its mills in the mid-20th century, and has been losing population ever since. But something has changed in recent years, with a surprising influx of refugees to this part of snowy, cold upstate New York—the newcomers have given Utica hope for second chance.

  • Zack Dinerstein

    This was great! Thank you for putting together such a touching portrait of our home town. This is one of the best stories I’ve ever heard about Utica.

  • Kevin

    This is very well produced. It’s nice to hear something with a positive spin about Utica. The city is poised on the edge of another renaissance due to the assistance of the refugee influx and the MicroChip research and development session.

  • Laura Ray Cervantes

    I’m so proud of Utica’s immigrant influence of past and present. The Refugee Center in Utica is absolutely wonderful, and its programs have created a level of diversity that is truly incredible for a city of that size. Utica definitely has its own special charm, which this story captured perfectly. Thank you for this… made me feel incredibly nostalgic, and I want to come back for a visit very soon. Bravo!

  • Shanti Jain Smith

    Although I left Whitesboro thirty five years ago My son, daughter, grandson and many many nieces and nephews live there so I visit when I can. It’s wonderful to hear this thoughtful coverage of Utica and area. It’s proximity to the Adirondacks makes summer visits enjoyable. Thank you State of the Reunion.

  • Shannon E Geary

    This is great to hear! Being a native of Remsen, Ny (30 min north of Utica) it is so nice to see good happening in Utica. This also made me feel very nastolgic about the area. Thank you for your good work!


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