Oneida County Tourism (OCT), the official tourism promotion agency for Oneida County, NY, has announced the launch of the brand-new Discover Utica Trail, a digital trail which highlights local businesses in Utica with a focus on restaurants, coffee shops, nightlife, and attractions.

The mobile, interactive trail – which can be accessed on the Oneida County Tourism website – features over 100 businesses throughout the city of Utica. Anyone can sign up on the OCT website and follow the prompts to enter their phone number and email address. The trail is a free, mobile-optimized web application. It is delivered via SMS and email. Participants will check into trail locations on their phone using GPS technology and earn points for each check-in. Then, they can redeem those points for an exclusive, limited edition IIHF poster prize.

OCT partnered with local artist Maria Vallese (Retro Sorrento), to design a unique, Utica-themed IIHF 12×18” poster. The poster’s distinctive design features major Utica attractions such as the Adirondack Bank Center and the Stanley Theatre, as well as the Haudenosaunee flag to highlight the importance of the Oneida Indian Nation to our region’s history.


“The IIHF Women’s World Championship is just days away from taking downtown Utica by storm and we are preparing for thousands of visitors from around the globe to descend on Oneida County,” said Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. “The new Discover Utica Trail is a great way for our guests to explore their surroundings during the 14-day world-class hockey tournament and festival. I encourage everyone to utilize this innovative online tool to experience the amazing food, culture and entertainment we have to offer, and to come back again and check out what they might have missed.”


“We’re thrilled to launch this trail in time for the much-anticipated IIHF Women’s World Championship,” said Sarah Foster Calero, president of Oneida County Tourism. “We know attendees will have downtime between games, and this trail is the perfect tool to explore the area. Users can sort locations by category and see coupons for different businesses. After they check into four locations, they can redeem for the beautiful IIHF-themed posted designed by Maria Vallese. We loved working with her to highlight attractions in Utica while showcasing the talents of a local artist. And the poster is the perfect keepsake for this monumental event.”


Michael Lehr, Director of Marketing with the Utica Comets, said, “We’re excited to be a part of the Discover Utica Trail, especially during the Women’s World Championship. The restaurants in this area will go up against any in the country as some of the best food and dining experiences out there. We hope people that come to town get to try new places like Tailor and the Cook or feel at home at a place like Babe’s. The tournament is a celebration of the great athletes, but also of everything Oneida County and Utica have to offer.


Andria Heath, Executive Director of the Utica Zoo, said, “The Utica Zoo is eager to welcome guests from all over the nation visiting our Greater Mohawk Valley Region! We have fun for all ages and visiting our Urban Forest in the center of the city is a great way to add to any memory-filled vacation.”

Once trail users are ready to redeem their pass, they simply use the web application. Prizes will be sent through a third-party company, so participants never have to worry about redeeming in-person or being in the area to get their prize.

The pass is designed and executed by a well-known technology company in the travel space, Bandwango. Bandwango technology is designed to support free and paid experiences created by destinations and marketed to visitors and locals. 

To view the Discover Utica Trail as well as the Heart of NY Beverage Trail, please visit: