By Jackie Prager SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) — The 13th Annual Downtown Dining Weeks began this week breaking a new record of featuring 32 restaurants throughout downtown.
The amount of restaurants offered was not the only new addition; Dining Weeks introduced a new “Sleep Over” package. This package gives downtown goers a deal of $185 dollar a night. Included in the nightly rate is a $25 Dining Weeks meal voucher and free parking.
Participating hotels include the Courtyard Marriott, Residence Inn, Jefferson Clinton Hotel and the Marriott Syracuse Downtown.
Downtown Dining Weeks has brought thousands of customers into the area. Last year, about 50,000 people participated in the 15-day event.
Downtown Committee of Syracuse communication coordinator, Alice Maggorie, said Dining Weeks is continuing to grow. The event attracts people from counties outside of Syracuse including; Auburn, Courtland, and Oswego counties among others, she said, adding to the necessity of a hotel deal.
“We’re so glad that the hotels got on board because now not only are people driving to downtown for dinner, but they can also stay overnight, so it’s really about that downtown package,” Maggorie said.
Jim Wefers the General Manager at the Courtyard Marriott said they approached the Downtown Committee with the idea.
“It’s perfect for someone to come to Syracuse, spend the night and be able to walk to a majority, if not all, of the restaurants from their hotel,” Wefers said.
Wefers said he hopes people enjoy downtown and want to stay longer. All the effort goes to the resurgence of downtown.
“It’s a revitalization and it’s an enjoyable one,” he said.
Over the past 10 years, downtown Syracuse has seen a 50% increase in people living downtown, Maggorie said. She hopes Dining Weeks will help show participants what downtown has to offer.
Dining Weeks continues through March 1.