Cazenovia More than 100 Cazenovia residents and local business owners spent the evening of Jan. 10 listening to area officials discuss the last 12 months in Central New York and outline their hopes for the upcoming year at the annual State of the Area Forum, hosted by the Greater Cazenovia Area Chamber of Commerce.
New York State Assemblyman Bill Magee, Senator David Valesky, Nelson Town Supervisor Roger Bradstreet, Cazenovia Central School District Superintendent Bob Dubik and Cazenovia Town Supervisor Ralph Monforte each delivered a speech to attendees. Cazenovia Village Mayor Kurt Wheeler was scheduled to speak as well, but was unable to attend, as he was busy at the Mohawk Valley Indoor Track Association Division I Championship where he coached the Cazenovia varsity girls indoor track team to a first-place finish.
The event was held from 6 to 8 p.m., in the 54Freedom Corporate Headquarters at 5 Ledyard Ave., formerly known as the Ridge Associates Building. Dave’s Diner supplied a special selection of hors d’oeuvres and desserts, while Empire Brewing Company and Owera Vineyards, both recent additions to the GCACC, supplied beverages. The event was so well attended, seating was available in three separate rooms equipped with speakers and television monitors.
Assemblyman Magee was the first to address the crowd. He told of his offices’ achievements over the past year, applauded the successes of area agri-businesses and described developing plans for Madison County. Magee said he hopes to see increased interest in agri-tourism throughout the area, stemming from the new cider-house at Critz Farms, Owera Vineyards’ award-winning wines and Empire Brewing Company, which is looking to open a microbrewery in Cazenovia this year.
“We’re trying to develop a ‘wine and beverage trail’ through Madison County,” Magee said. “This is a big thing other parts of the state have done, and hopefully we can do it here.”