Holiday season means Christmas decorations take over Downtown Syracuse, but it also means snowstorms and cold temperatures keep people away from visiting the historic area. To try to combat that, the Downtown Committee of Syracuse has brought a new attraction to Perseverance Park.
A ten-foot tall lighted star, part of the Wish Upon a Downtown Star initiative, shines bright at the center of the park. The idea is for people to walk up, take a selfie, upload it to social media with #IWish and share their wishes for Downtown Syracuse.
Alice Maggiore, Communications Manager at the Downtown Committee of Syracuse, said the priority is to have the star be a place people want to go to despite the cold weather so characteristic of the Syracuse winter.
“We hope that the star will help folks maybe engage with the environment when sometimes when it is cold and snowy people do not want to be out and about or outside as much,” Maggiore said.
The Communications Manager added that another purpose of the Wish Upon a Downtown Star is to have both residents and tourists visit and buy from the more than 70 local retail stores.
“We hope that everyone will remember Downtown when they are making their holiday shopping plans and mapping out their holiday traditions,” she said. “Think of all the unique gifts you can purchase just by coming Downtown.”
Aside from the star, the Window Wonderland Contest will also try to attract people to contribute to the economy downtown during Christmas.
This year, 24 local businesses will compete in a public vote where the people of Syracuse will vote on the most originally Christmas decorated windows. The winner will receive 500 dollars.
The Changing Room, a women’s clothing store that won the competition in 2015, is competing again this year. Stylist Julianna Pastella said the contest also helps to showcase Syracuse as a whole and not only the downtown area.
Pastella added that, this year, the inspiration for The Changing Room’s window was plaid since they have incorporated it into their merchandise as well.
Voting for the Window Wonderland Contest will be open until January 1, 2019.