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4 Wedding Toast Tips You Need to Know Before the Big Day!

It sounds easy enough, but giving a wedding toast (such as the all-important best man speech) is a task you should be well prepared for…

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He’s your best friend! She’s your twin sister! The words should come easy, right? Not so fast…
Many overlook the various wedding toast opportunities as a time to just say a few words. Yet those few words can end up being one of the most memorable aspects of the wedding reception, for better or worse. Being one of the premier wedding destinations in Central NY, we here at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown have seen it all, from the eloquent tear-inducing showstopper to the sometimes embarrassing and cringe-worthy.
With that in mind, here’s our four wedding toast tips to ensure that your time at the mic leaves the crowd speechless (for all the right reasons).

Be prepared

Nerves get the best of everyone. Be sure to prepare your speech and anticipate the reactions you’ll receive. Will there be laughs? Tears rolling down cheeks? With a plan in place, nothing will faze you from delivering your own version of St. Crispin’s Day Speech.

Keep it simple

Even Shakespeare (see above referenced speech) knew how to get a reaction with a few well-placed words. Tell a nice story about the couple and wish them well. Add a little bit of your own personal flair. Are you the first to speak? Introduce the couple for the first time! The last to go? Remark on the overall reception. Just keep it short but meaningful and it’ll be remembered long after the honeymoon is over.

Be funny and appropriate

A reception is filled with all kinds of friends and family, spanning different generations and cultures. Many of them don’t know each other, and some may not even be that close to the couple, so it’s best to be diplomatic with your jokes and anecdotes. Be funny but consider your audience (and perhaps run your speech by a trusted friend to get their opinion).

Most of all, be sincere and have fun! Remember: your speech is a gift to the happy couple!

Fall In Love With a Romantic Getaway in Syracuse

Discover how “together” can be the most beautiful place to be… especially when on a romantic getaway in Syracuse!hands hold romance lvoe shelby-deeter-193590-unsplash

Say “I Love You” with a romantic weekend in Syracuse! Few think of the Salt City as a “destination” for romance, especially in the colder winter months, yet it’s a wonderful place to fall in love all over again with both that special person in your life and the Central NY area.

Skate The Day Away!
The only way this long-standing holiday-time tradition could be made better is as a skate for two! The Clinton Square Ice Rink is one of the city’s most popular destinations during the winter, opening at the end of November and closing in March. Lace up a pair of skates, hit the ice, and heat things up with your better half.

Take a Walk on The Wild Side
Open year-round, The Rosamond Gifford Zoo is the perfect date to bring your childhood back to life. Your “puppy love” can bloom around the animals of the world, with special events like Snow Leopard Days in January/February making this a “purrfect” date out that your heart will never forget.

Book a Romantic Weekend at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel
Whether planning a romantic getaway in Syracuse built around activities in the area, from skiing to sleigh rides, or just wishing for a romantic weekend staycation, enjoy a night or two with us at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown. Known as one of the most luxurious and iconic places in the Central NY area for love, our “Romance Package” was made to be the ideal “Do Not Disturb” getaway!

This special package includes:

  • The classic romantic pair of champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries delivered upon arrival.
  • Breakfast for two, buffet-style, at Eleven Waters.
  • Complimentary late check-out, so that “Do Not Disturb” sign can hang on the door handle a little longer!

Make memories that will last a lifetime and book a romantic stay with us today.

The Five Hottest Wedding Trends for 2018!

Learn how the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel can help you have the “on trend” wedding of your dreams!


There are many factors that go into planning the perfect wedding. The Certified Wedding Specialists at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel suggest considering the hottest wedding trends when starting to plan. Not every idea will speak to your soul, but by looking at what is on trend in the current wedding industry, your personal nuptials will become one of the can’t-miss local Syracuse events for your friends and family:

High Drama

Having a hotel wedding is NOT the antithesis of over-the-top indulgence! Our team can turn any of our flexible spaces into elaborately decorated displays of your love. Maybe not as magnanimous as the Royal Wedding in England, but we promise your big day will be what’s happening in Syracuse!

Pure Romance

Think candlelit ceremonies and rose petals are the perfect way to ‘happily ever after’? You’re not alone, and as one of the top current wedding trends, our Finger Lakes Ballroom Wedding Package can be customized to fit this style of traditional romance to melt any heart!


Even if we don’t offer an outdoor wedding space, we can transform our ballrooms into the ideal naturally-inspired venue that will provide you with the best of both worlds (sorry Mother Nature, you won’t spoil this day)!


Something borrowed and blue is not only traditional, it’s the beginning of a ceremony based on bringing the past back to the present to ensure a blissful future!


Whimsy = creativity! Anything your heart desires can come true!

Now, that you have learned about the many different trends we can incorporate into your special day, plan to Tie the Knot at Marriott! All of our weddings at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel are highly personalized events and we look forward to assisting in creating your own perfect version of ‘happily ever after’!

13 Reasons to Join Us for The Great New York State Fair

The NYS Fair 2018 promises 13 days full of family fun for the over 1,000,000 guests who are expected to attend!


What’s happening in Syracuse between Wednesday, August 22 through Monday, September 3 is only the most highly-anticipated event in the area all year. 1,000,000 million attendees cannot be wrong – The New York State Fair 2018 is the only place to end your summer! Here are 13 reasons why you should join us for this 13-day extravaganza of family fun!

  1. The Great New York State Fair is the oldest in the US! The State Fair in Syracuse is still standing after 177 years!
  1. New York State pride! Now’s the time for Downtown Syracuse, not New York City, to take the spotlight!
  1. No subways? No problem! The NYS Fair 2018 is in CENTRAL NY and easily accessible by car (Thruway), boat (Canalway), and train (Amtrack).
  1. The Marriott Syracuse Downtown is only five miles away! Our comfortable accommodations and convenient location make us your perfect home for this event.
  1. Two words: pig races! Some NYS Fair traditions need to be seen to be believed.
  1. See the “miracle of life”! Another fair tradition: live cow births. (i.e. see above description).
  1. Butter’s not just for bread! The butter sculptures are truly “fat” pieces of art!
  1. Drink a cup of milk for a quarter! Talk about doing the body good!
  1. The midway rides get better every year! From Kiddie Land to terrifying thrill rides, there’s something for everyone!
  1. Discover our diverse history. The Pan-African Village is a hidden gem focusing on New York’s African-American history.
  1. The music will never die! With a variety of venues, the fair will always be rocking with sweet tunes!
  1. Food, glorious food! No Fair is complete without the most indulgent (and usually deep-fried) carnival eats!
  1. Did we mention the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel is only five miles away?

Break Out Your Kilt and Join Us for The 77th Central New York Scottish Games & Celtic Festival!

Get your kilt and Celtic spirit on when the CNY Scottish Games returns to the Downtown Syracuse area!
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It’s been dunky’s since a last saw ye… The Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel just offered a salutation of “long time, no see” to all of the lads and lasses getting ready for the most Gaelic of the annual local Syracuse events. The Celtic Spirit is set to descend upon the Downtown Syracuse area during the 77th Central New York Scottish Games. The Central New York Celtic Festival will surely be at the top of the list of what’s happening in Syracuse on Saturday, August 11.

Taking place at Long Branch Park, the Scottish Games and Celtic Festival includes six varieties of eclectic activities for you to enjoy. Starting at 9:00AM, watch the traditional athletic competitions, enjoy the sights and sounds of the Celtic entertainment, and sample the delicious delicacies and Scot-approved wares from the local vendors. Yet if we needed to list the true highlights of this one-day affair, there are two events that can’t be missed!

The CNY Scottish Games pit rival “clans” against each other in traditional Highland competitions like the Caber Toss and Stone Throw. The use of authentic logs, stones, and hay bales reflect the occupations of the tradesmen in traditional Celtic societies.

The festival always concludes with a traditional ceilidh! This year’s ceilidh, or celebratory gathering of folk music and dance, will include the talents of the Celtic band The Causeway Giants and the McDonald School of Irish Dance and promises to send everyone off with the Scottish spirit still singing in their souls.

Planning to skedaddle aff to Syracuse for this festival? Less than 10 miles from Long Branch Park, the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel is the perfect home base to experience all of the Celtic charm of this annual event. Our comfortable accommodations will ensure your experience is nothing short of pure barry!

The 39th Season of The Skaneateles Festival Is Almost Here!

Don’t miss out on attending the only classical music festival in the Downtown Syracuse area this year!


While there are many local Syracuse events that fill up the annual calendar, the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel cannot think of one more beloved than the Skaneateles Festival. This year, the entire month of August in the picturesque lakeside village of Skaneateles will reverberate with beautiful music. Known lovingly to the locals as SkanFest, the 2018 season will feature a variety of concerts honoring the “Music Mavericks” throughout history. From Beethoven to Bernstein and many other musical virtuosos in between, the weeknight indoor concerts and Saturday performances under the stars promise to feature something for everyone.

The Skaneateles Festival 2018 runs for four weeks, beginning its events on Tuesday, August 7th and concluding on Saturday, September 1. Whether a long-running patron of this annual festival or a neophyte ready to get your first dose of classical music in the serene ambiance of the Finger Lakes, there will soon be no doubt why these four weeks are always at the top of the list of what’s happening in Syracuse to end the summer months.  Some of the notable acts that are returning for SkanFest 2018 are Eliot Fisk (August 16) and violinist Tai Murray (August 9). Yet it’s the slate of newcomers such as the internationally acclaimed Danish String Quartet (August 10) and the soothing tropical sounds of the steel drum virtuoso Andy Akiho (August 30) that have grabbed the attention of many in the area.

No matter your choice of musical memory, we hope you will consider the Marriott Syracuse Downtown Hotel as your home base for all things SkanFest! Located less than 20 miles away, now is the time to book your room and ensure your “slice of summer heaven” is one of comfort and luxury, making your entire experience a harmonic melody you will never forget!