Recently, USA Today took America on a photo tour of Utica titled "Tough times in Utica". It depicted Utica in an apparent state of disrepair highlighting graffiti and old buildings--the pictures were also taken on a cloudy day nonetheless. The photos were not only seen by USA Today readers, but also readers of the Albany Times-Union saw the photos with the title "Utica struggles". Now, a few days after those photos were published, a new website has emerged to not show the "though times" in Utica, but rather, it embraces the beauty Utica has to offer.

VisitUtica.org is collecting pictures of our historic city to help improve its "self-image." The website says, "All too often, people focus on only the negative aspects of living in this post-industrial era." "...We want YOU to showcase your beautiful images of our city right here for the world to see."

Personally, I think this website is a wonderful idea. There really are some great places to visit in our beautiful city. Yes, Utica has had its fair share of tough times--all cities have. But, our city has so much to offer. Not only do we have a beautiful downtown, our city is full of culture with our one-of-a-kind restaurants and countless markets. We have an amazing public library, a great theatre, wonderful colleges--just to name a few. And, the best part about Utica is our friendly residents.

Last week was Limerick Day, and I wrote a limerick about Utica. And, I mentioned the friendliness of the residents in our community.

UTICA

Utica is a city we know.

It definitely gets its fair share of snow.

In spite of all that,

We all love to chat.

So next time you’re here say, “Hello.”

Our sister station have been covering the story of the photos that appeared in USA Today and Albany Times-Union. Here is WIBX's story. Here is Lite 98.7's story.

In your opinion, what is the most beautiful part of Utica? Let us know in the comments below.