I heard thru the grapevine that the Westboro Baptist church is planning to protest the funerals of the firemen in Webster who just got murdered while they were trying to put out a fire.
All my Rochester friends: Please, please, PLEASE pass this on to EVERYONE you know! Those Westboro Baptist church are planning to protest the funerals of the fireman that were just killed. PLEASE gather as many people as you can to form a human wall to block those jerks from causing mental/emotional harm to already suffering families. Share this with everyone! Details of when and where will follow shortly.”
I’m from Webster and this sort of noise is not tolerated and I will not let these idiots cause my hometown more pain than we’ve already suffered this week.
It’s still not known when the funerals will be but I’ll edit this post or re-post once it’s known.
SPREAD THE WORD, SIGNAL BOOST AND ROLL THE HELL OUT
I’ll spread the word as best as I can to my volunteer firefighter friends here in Buffalo and hopefully some of my followers can help as well!
Yeah, maybe I was a bit harsh with the Rangers. Still though, the Sabres are the best hockey team in NY.
Is that alright with you “broski”?
I’ve been posting about this for awhile. I’ve heard that colleges all across the country are participating, but I know for a fact that SUNY and CUNY colleges are involved.
Tomorrow, October 5, Wednesday, at 12pm, students will be walking out of their classes to protest the cuts in state aid, tuition hikes, and lack of accountability in college administration.
At UB, students will walkout to let our administration know we will not tolerate tuition hikes and budget cuts that result in losing core academic programs while they maintain six-figure salaries. They ask students to pay more, receive fewer programs and have larger class sizes without a shred of accountability or student input.
NYSUNY 2020 came into effect this summer and allows SUNY and CUNY schools to charge residents $300 more in tuition each year for the next five years. University Centers can charge an additional 3% (through a $75 fee) and have the option of charging 10% more per year for Out-of-State students.
This is the so-called “rational” tuition plan! It amounts to a 34% increase of resident tuition in five years and a whopping 50% increase for out-of-state tuition during those same five years.
This will price students out of SUNY! We must stand with one voice and let our administration know that we won’t tolerate tuition hikes when they refuse to share in the sacrifices they are asking students to make. Their failure shouldn’t be on the backs of students!
If you go to UB… walk out and meet on the Academic Spine. You’ll hear us. If you absolutely can’t miss class, of course that’s fine. But otherwise, it’s just one class, and it’s for a worthy cause. Join us.
I recently read an article (found here) about how there is a plan to recreate the original “RiverRock Gardens” vision that included in minnow ponds in the area near Vulcan St. While I think this is a terrific idea and will lead to great things for the park, it’s just not enough. The park is not a park anymore it is a baseball and football complex while I love what the two organizations do for the youth of riverside, it just needs to become more of a park if they want to bring people back to riverside.
There is a ton more to do but, without a doubt, Riverside needs this. People are leaving faster then ever and the area is dwindling day by day.
1. Eat ice cream every day. Make a circuit of the many parlors Buffalo has to offer: Sweet Tooth, Dolci, Anderson’s Custard, Fowler’s, Sweet Jenny’s, Condrell’s, Charlap’s, Parkside Chocolates, the Hatch, Rascals. See how many flavors you can order without repeating.
2. Say thank you to the Bubble Man of Allen Street. Next time you’re on the corner of Elmwood and Allen and find yourself surrounded by bubbles, take the time to thank the source. Charles Incorvaia has been entertaining passersby for more than five years from his lofty perch above Jim’s Steakout. How to thank him? Here’s one idea: He gets his coffee at Tasso, that charming shoebox of a coffeehouse just up the block on Elmwood. Stop in, give the barista two bucks and say you’d like to buy a coffee for the Bubble Man when he comes in next. Think of it as an endowment.
3. Drink from a fruit jar at Earl’s. Yes, Earl’s is back, and it makes a great destination for anyone traveling near Route 16 in Chaffee. Have a delicious piece of pie and savor the second coming of this classic greasy spoon, and see if you can convince Earl to reinstate his great summer bluegrass concert series.
4. Wear a seersucker suit. There’s no need to be weighed down this summer if you want to look sharp. Invest in a seersucker suit from one of Buffalo’s wonderful men’s shops; they’re generally less than $150. You’ll feel breezy, sophisticated, and suave from the moment you walk out the door. You might channel an E. M. Foster’s character from a A Room With a View on a promenade about Rome, or a New Orleans lawyer drinking cocktails on the veranda.
5. Turn off your TV. You don’t need that noise. Sit on a porch with friends instead.
6. Throw away your papers. Fall behind on the news; it’ll be waiting for you in September, when the presidential election hits high gear. Read a book or two instead—you know, those things they sell at Rust Belt, and Talking Leaves, and Second Reader.
7. Head out to the country. The best place to watch the Perseid meteor showers—the peak day is August 12 this year—is away from city lights. The Boston Hills are nice. So is Strykersville, and the Strykersville Pub has the best grilled cheese sandwich in Western New York.
8. Build yourself a home. Volunteer just one day to Habitat for Humanity this summer. Or, if you’re more a tearer-down than a builder-up, to Buffalo ReUse.
9. Dig a little garden. A visit to Urban Roots, the nation’s first cooperative garden center, will get you started. If you haven’t visited the shop at 428 Rhode Island Street (362-8982 / urbanroots.org), then maybe your visit visit ought to be on June 21, when Urban Roots celebrates its first year in business with activities all day and a recpetion in the evening.
10. Eat a lot of peaches. All right, peaches don’t come in until August. But Native Offerings (nativeofferings.com), an organic CSA outside Ellicottville, should be producing strawberries and raspberries now. (I prefer fruit and vegetables from the Southern Tier, on account of the industrial pollution in Niagara County.) Cherries will be coming in July. You can volunteer your labor there for a day in exchange for produce.
11. Try to find Jesus (but not on your own). Maybe tent revivals are making a comeback, maybe they never went anywhere. But there are modern-day Elmer Gantrys everywhere. Hamburg’s Old Time Baptist Church just pulled up stakes at Fontana Grove in West Seneca, but they’re pitching the tent again on Gowanda Road in Hamburg, August 17-22. Get some of that old-time religion. Alternately, keep an eye peeled for lawn fetes at Catholic churches, like the one this weekend (June 6) at St. Joseph’s in Batavia.
12. Visit every Olmsted Park. There are seven of these national treasures in total: Cazenovia, Delaware, the Front, Martin Luther King, Jr., Riverside, South, and Parkways. Take a walk, have a picnic, play hide-and-go-seek. If you’re feeling particularly generous, you can even help to improve them by volunteering or donating. Visitbuffaloolmstedparks.org for details.
13. Watch a sunset at the Front. Enjoy double the sunset as you observe the stunning reflection over Lake Erie and the Niagara River. Imagine the Peace Bridge plaza somewhere else entirely.
14. Visit the Butterfly Conservatory at Niagara on the Lake. Grab your most colorful shirt and drive to Niagara Falls on a rainy day. Walking through the simulated jungle atmosphere, don’t be surprised if some of the 2,000 butterflies in the conservatory decide to use your shoulder, arm, or head as a quick perch. Visitniagaraparks.com for details.
15. Send the kids to summer camp. Depending on what your youngsters are interested in and how much time you would like to spend with them, there’s a smorgasbord of options for you to choose from. Camp Weona, a YMCA camp, provides the typical bug juice and campfire songs sleep-away experience. Camp weona (campweona.org) been operating for 111 years. But you could also opt for a day camp such as Mount St. Mary Daycare, which send kids on a field trip every day.
16. Spend at least one morning with the Women in Black. The war continues.
17. Spend a day at Niagara Falls, including Maid of the Mist and Goat and Three Sisters Islands. Appreciate the world wonder in our backyard. Really appreciate it. Don’t just lean on the railing or look through the binoculars that cost 50 cents. Visit the history rich Goat and Three Sisters Islands and learn about their fascinating Native American history. Get up close and very personal with the falls through the drenching Maid of the Mist, a sure-fire way to cool off in hot weather.
18. Eat lots of soft shell crab, oysters, mussels, clams. Be shellfish! The patio at Merlin’s on Elmwood or MT Pockets on Hertel are fun, both to see people and to eat seafood.
19. Go to a drive-in movie. This is high on my list of things you can do in Western New York that you can’t do in a lot of other parts of the country. The ones closest to the city of Buffalo have disappeared over the years as the real estate became too valuable; the recently deceased Buffalo Drive-In on Union Road lasted as long as it did because the location—across the street from a cemetery—was deemed undesirable for any other use. But there are still four of them in the area—the Transit in Lockport (21 miles from the city), the Sunset in Middlesport (30 miles), the Delevan in Delevan (45 miles), and the Silver Lake in Perry (54 miles). They’re all in great shape, with new (multiple) screens and radio sound, and show the latest hit movies. They thrive exactly because the economy is otherwise so lousy: not only are the ticket prices substantially lower, but you get two movies for the price of one. It’s a family deal that can’t be beat. And it’s the only place left outside of your living room where you can watch a movie and smoke, as well as enjoying whatever else you happen to bring in your cooler. For more info check out www.drive-ins.com.
20. Don’t miss the Erie County Fair. Or whatever they like to call it nowadays. Every year you say you’ll go, but you let those two weeks slide by. Don’t. It’s August 6-17, and each day promises something more exciting than the next. Watch the pig races, ride the ferris wheel, gnaw some signature salt-water taffy, caramel apples, or fried dough. Buy something from the crafts tent, and round the evening off with a visit to the grandstand for some good old American talent. Or, at the very least, the Ultimate Bus Demolition Derby on August 16.
21. Go to the Museum of Science Star Lights party. It’s on June 7. It’s on the roof. They have telescopes for stargazing, and the museum needs the money.
22. Go to a Bisons game, using the Metrorail, just for the food. God knows the team’s not inspiring this year. But it’s still a pleasant (and relatively cheap) entertainment.
23. Explore Letchworth State Park. Gas prices preclude a cross-country drive to the Grand Canyon this summer, but there’s always Letchworth and its natural wonders. Walk, hike, camp, kayak, hot-air balloon, horseback ride, or enjoy a wonderful dinner at the Glen Iris Inn.
24. Take a boat ride through the canal locks in Lockport. During summer hours (June 17-September 1), boats leave from 210 Market Street at 10am, noon, 3pm, and 5:30pm every day. It’s recommended that you reserve ahead to ensure your spot on a cruise. Call 433-6155 for details.
25. Build an awesome float for next year’s Mardi Gras parade. Do it while the weather’s nice, instead of freezing your ass off in the garage in February.
26. Sundowners at Root Five. You may or may not love the live music. The food’s good but hardly groundbreaking. But for our money, Root Five (627-555 / rootfive.com) in Hamburg has better lakeside views than any restaurant on Erie’s western shores. Everything tastes better on a patio like this.
27. Take a Taste of Everywhere. A Taste of Buffalo, A Taste of Ellicottville, a Taste of Wherever. Surely there are more; why not tour the region’s celebrations of gluttony the way baseball fans tour ballparks? This year’s Taste of Buffalo (July 12-13) will once again be promoting healthy choices for eating. Feel free to eat to your heart’s content without feeling guilty or too full to turn down all the delicious options that await you. For a small-town vibe, try the Taste of Ellicottville, which falls on the same day (August 9) as the Psychic Fair at Holiday Valley’s Clubhouse Chalet.
28. Walk through the Alabama Swamps. Don some khaki and pretend you’re on safari. The Alabama Swamps, more than 20,000 acres of swamps, marshes, and forests, includes the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge and the Tonawanda and Oak Creek Wildlife Management Areas. They’re just north of Akron. Hike along the hundreds of trails, canoe Oak Orchard Creek, fish for bass and pike, or simply spend a day observing the amazing species of birds and other wildlife that call this area home.
29. Take a picnic and a kite to Fort Niagara State Park. After your informative tour of old Fort Niagara evokes memories of school field trips, spread a blanket and lay out your lunch. Take advantage of the refreshing breeze coming off Lake Ontario to test your kite-flying skills.
30. Start a water balloon fight.
31. Take a kid—yours, anybody’s—to Bubblefest at the Museum of Science. For one whole day (July 26), your kids can have a blast doing everything having to do with bubbles! Make big bubbles, small bubbles, bubbles inside of bubbles, and so much more. Admission is $1 for members and $8 and under for everybody else. For details, visit sciencebuff.org.
32. Go to Squeaky Wheel’s Animation Festival in Day’s Park. Squeaky Wheel’s Fifth Annual Outdoor Animation Festival takes place on June 26 at 9pm in Day’s Park. The festival features a series of animated shorts from all around the world, including Russia, the Netherlands, and the United States. For more information, visitsqueaky.org.
33. Grow tomatoes in your backyard. Come August, can them. Consult your local greenhouse or gardening book before digging up your garden. Tomatoes come in many different varieties, each suited to different climates and tastes. With research, you can finally find your tomato soul mate.
34. Grow cucumbers. Come August, make pickles.
35. Visit Rock City Park, south of Olean. Bring comfortable hiking shoes and wander along trails dwarfed by gigantic boulders several stories high at this ancient outcropping—believed to have been a Seneca Indian “fort” at one time, Rock City is a genuine americana tourist destination, complete with gift shop, sure to rival any gargantuan ball of string. rockcitypark.com.
36. Or Panama Rocks. Walk along solid history and take a hike along the 300-million-year-old Panama Rocks. With self-guided tours and a trail map, visitors are encouraged to take as long as they like as they snake through the many rocky corridors, caves, and deep dens. Open through October 20, 10am-5pm, there’s a whole lot of time to have memorable adventures. Tickets are $6 and under; for more information, visit panamarocks.com.
37. Or Zoar Valley. On an inner tube. Ah Zoar Valley—sure, you can hike it. Or you can paddle. But the finest way to see Zoar Valley is to drift with the current on an inner tube. For more info, visit zoarvalley.org—and check to make sure the water’s high enough.
38. Visit the Darwin Martin House and Graycliff, both in the same weekend. The city life, the country life…ah, well, the blueblood life. Humble yourself before the magnificent architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright. Each of these swanky houses has its own special attractions and marvels; both will stir imagination of the days when the city’s elite contracted au courant architects like Wright to design their summer and winter palaces. For more info, visit darwinmartinhouse.org and graycliff.bfn.org.
39. Go to every Thursday in the Square concert. You don’t have to stay if you don’t like the music. Just admire the crowd and the public space.
40. Go see both productions of Shakespeare in Delaware Park. Twice. You’ll enjoy them more on second viewing, and you’ll improve your picnic-packing with practice.
41. Join in Juneteenth. Buffalo’s Juneteenth celebration—which marks the Emancipation Proclamation—is the third largest in the country, which is sensible, given the city’s rich African-American history. This year’s celebration, June14-15 in Martin Luther King, Jr. Park, is the 33rd since BUILD began organizing it in 1976. If you read Artvoice, odds are good you don’t get to the East Side often enough. This is a good reason.
42. Plant a tree. Anywhere you can.
43. Eat the entire Italian Festival. Let’s not pretend it’s about the bocce competition or the Miss Italian Festival pageant or the live music or the ride. All of these are fine. But it’s about the food. Buffalo’s Italian Festival takes over Hertel Avenue July 17-20. Wear loose pants. For more information, visit buffaloitalianfestival.com.
44. Watch a sunset from the Cargill elevators down by the Buffalo River. Warning: You’re probably trespassing.
45. Pack a picnic basket with cocktails. You’ll need enough for two drinks for each person in your party. Add some snacks. Find a place to sit and watch the sunset—preferably someplace you need to walk a ways to get to. Repeat at least once a week as long as the weather is nice.
46. Make ice cream.
47. Make homemade lemonade. Or sun tea.
48. Go to a potluck dinner at Nickel City Housing Co-op. Every Wednesday night at 7pm, the old Granger Mansion at the corner of Allen and Elmwood opens it doors to anybody—anybody—who wants to share a meal with its residents. Can’t make it this Wednesday? You’re invited again next Wednesday. And the Wednesday after that. How can you keep saying no? More information about Buffalo’s two housing cooperatives can be found at nickelcitycoop.org. Bring a dish to pass. (Maybe some homemade ice cream. Or a pitcher of homemade lemonade.)
49. Spend a night, or the whole weekend, at the Great Blue Heron Festival. It’s far and away the most laid-back and picturesque outdoor music festival of the summer. Even with thousands of music lovers camped in the woods, the Great Blue Heron has maintained a homey, intimate feel through all its 16, going on 17, years. Donna the Buffalo remains the house band, and the lineup this year includes the Avett Brothers, Entrain, and Big Leg Emma. Get thee to Sherman, New York, July 4-6. Bring the kids if you have them; leave the dog at home. More information at www.greatblueheron.com.
50. Collect fossils at Penn Dixie. It’s not just the trilobites. Penn Dixie is a beautiful place. For more info, go to penndixie.org.
51. Go to the Hellenic Festival. It’s this weekend, June 6-8, at the Hellenic Orthodox Church of the Annunciation, 146 West Utica Street. Admission is just two bucks. For more information visit buffalohellenicfestival.org.
52. Don’t miss the Pride Center’s Summer in the City party at LaSalle Park. It’s on August 24, a perfectly raucous closeout to summer.
53. Brush Up Buffalo. Who doesn’t like to feel of a paintbrush in their hand? At the Brush Up Buffalo event on June 14, hundreds of volunteers join together to repaint some of the older houses around Buffalo which are badly in need of repair. Get out of the house, meet new people, and improve your beloved city. For more info, visitbrushupbuffalo.org.
54. Take a ride down to Griffis Sculpture Park. Turn to page 16 to learn why.
55. Get your fortune told by the vending machine lady on Clifton Hill in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Remember the movie Big? Take your chances with a prediction from a genuine mechanical psychic. Don’t turn up your nose at the other kitsch like wax museums, souvenir shops, and the museum dedicated to the greatest daredevil of all time, Evel Knievel, who jumped into eternity just last year. Visit www.evelknievelmuseum.com. There are also great views of a waterfall from over there, we’re told.
56. Go to a Seneca Pow Wow. There’a a pow wow in Irving July 11-13, and another in Salamanca July 18-20. If you go to the Hellenic and Italian festivals, to Juneteenth and the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, you ought to round out those experiences with this cultural celebration. Visit senecapowwow.org for detail.
57. Have your fortune told at Lilydale. Don’t be nervous. Visit www.lilydaleassembly.com for information about special events at the lakeside community of Spiritualists.
58. Visit the Sonnenberg Gardens. Green thumbs aren’t the only ones who’ll appreciate the beautiful Sonnenberg estate. The mansion offers free guided tours throughout most of the day, but the real destination is not the mansion, but what lies behind it. Each magnificent garden has its own theme and all are meticulously maintained. More information can be found at sonnenberg.org.
59. Rent a boat at Hoyt Lake. Although some details are still up in the air at press time, we’re told by the Olmsted Parks Conservancy that the popular boat rentals on Hoyt Lake (across from the Albright-Knox) will resume again this summer by the end of June. Anyone who had the pleasure of using them when they were briefly re-introduced a few years back knows that rowing around the lake combines a fun workout with a unique perspective on one of the city’s most picturesque locations. Visit buffaloolmstedparks.org for more info.
60. Take a picnic to Knox Farm State Park in East Aurora. If you’re lucky, there will be a polo match afoot. Follow up with a visit to Vidler’s variety store on Main Street.
61. Jump from a high place into a body of water. Liability issues preclude our advising where to do this. (But if you should find yourself on Centerline Road…)
62. Camp out in your own yard. Why not cut the emissions you’d release if you were to drive out to the country, and instead set up stakes right near your own bathroom and fridge? This is also great for families who want a spur-of-the-moment adventure. Marshmallows toast just fine over a hibachi, and ghost stories are easier on younger kids when they know all their stuffed animals are in their own bed, just up the stairs. Twenty-somethings take note: Passing out on the front lawn down the street from Mr. Goodbar does not qualify as “camping.”
63. Go see a movie in the meadow. Make it a picnic and settle down on the grass by the Parkside Lodge to enjoy a film under the stars. Pick your date: July 12 features hometown favorite The Natural; July 19 The Golden Compass; July 26 The Water Horse. Showtime is 9pm.
64. Go to ArtPark. There are plenty of events to choose from—concerts, musicals, etc.—as well as classes for kids. We think it’s best just to take a walk here on a sunny day. Check out artpark.net for information.
65. Mosey over to the Gerry Rodeo. Put on your chaps, don your cowboy hat, and hold on tight at the annual Gerry Rodeo, August 6-10, there’ll be non-stop bull and buck riding, barrel racing, steer roping, and much more. Visit gerryrodeo.org for more information.
66. Organize a block party.
67. Take in Toronto’s Buskerfest. Face-painters, stilt-walkers, musicians, fire-breathers, sword-swallowers, to name only a few. This Toronto festival of street performers benefits research on epilepsy and takes place August 21-24. More information can be found at torontobuskerfest.com.
68. March in the Pride Parade. It’s open to anybody. Following the parade, which includes over 40 groups, organizations and floats, will be the larger-than-life celebration in Bidwell Park. Tons of food, music, and entertainment will be available for this all-day event on June 8th. For more information, visit www.pride-buffalo.org.
69. Take a summer class at Squeaky Wheel. Squeaky Wheel offers a wide array of classes and workshops over the summer for both adults and children—filmmaking, screenwriting, introductions to computer editing and design programs, and more. For more information, visit squeaky.org.
70. Go fishing. But don’t eat the fish from Erie or Ontario. It’s not a great idea.
71. Ride your bike over the Peace Bridge and along the Niagara Parkway, a.k.a. “the scenic route,” all the way up to Niagara Falls. Don’t forget to have your papers in order. That means driver’s license plus birth certificate, or, if you want to go whole hog…
72. Get a passport, or renew your old one. The innocent days of kids going by the boatload or busload up to Crystal Beach ended with the Department of Homeland Security, so capitulate. Sure, it’s one more invasion of privacy but at least you’ll have these materials on hand if you have to flee the country when the clampdown hits.
If you still don’t want to cough up for a passport, a nifty, plastic, wallet-sized birth certificate can be obtained at Buffalo City Hall. But only if you were born in Buffalo.
73. Paint a landscape. Come on! How hard can it be? Explore your inner Bob Ross as you sit at your easel contemplating any one of the fabulous vistas our region offers. True, there are those who tell us that if something is worth doing, it’s worth doing well. We firmly believe that if something is worth doing, then it’s just worth doing—even badly.
74. Visit the Sugar Shack on Route 5 in Westfield. Pancake breakfasts are served every Sunday morning from 7am until 2pm (!) giving you plenty of time to roll out of bed and get on the road. Leave a couple hours to take the scenic Seaway Trail down the lake Erie shore to Barcelona, peek at the cool old lighthouse, then double back to Vinewood Acres Sugar Shack for a stack of flapjacks smothered in real maple syrup, made on the premises.
75. Join the tai chi group in Day’s Park. Or, if sunup is too early for you and tai chi is too disciplined, invent your own martial art to practice in public. No one will know you’re a fraud.
76. Spend a day in Ellicottville. The funky little ski resort town can be a lot of fun long after the snow has melted. Check out the festivals and events at ellicottvilleny.com. If you think you’re enough of a patriot, make it your Fourth of July destination, which coincides with the Ellicottville Rodeo. Yee-haw!
77. Go kayaking or rafting. While the Niagara River and Lakes Erie and Ontario are the busiest spots for boaters around here, Western New York also offers some great creeks that will send you winding through unpopulated gorges cutting through primeval forests. Plan ahead with info available at www.enchantedmountains.info/what_to_do/rafting-kayaking.asp.
78. Swim in Lake Erie and Lake Ontario on the same day. If you can work in Lake Chautauqua or a waterfall in between, so much the better.
79. Go to North Tonawanda, drink at the Dockside, yell “Whoo” at passing boats, hit the local bars. This can, but does not have to, coincide with Canalfest (July 13-20).
80. Travel the Erie Canal. True, this year the tolls are back in place along the historic waterway, but they aren’t exhorbitant. You can explore this living piece of American history in anything from a canoe to an overnight tour boat. Visit www.nyscanals.gov/ to plan your trip. Check out all 57 locks and 16 lift bridges from Albany to Buffalo. Then ask yourself: How were they able to build such an incredible waterway in only eight years, while we can’t even decide what kind of bridge to build, and where to build it, over the course of 11? If you’re afraid of the water, why not bike along the pathways on the banks, originally trod by faithful mules?
81. Go on a Sunday Night Bike Ride. Booze and bikes and bombing trails. Riders meet at the Bend on Allen Street, load up with beer, pick a destination, and go. Be prepared to stay up late.
82. Take an eco-tour with Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper. Hike, bike, or paddle along the creeks, rivers and lakefront that give our region its identity. Learn about threats to these irreplacable resources while you’re at it. Visit bnriverkeeper.org to register.
83. Volunteer. Want to make a difference? Well, did you know that Western New York has the highest per-capita ratio of not-for-profit organizations in the country? There are literally thousands of ways you can help these groups provide important services in our community. Whatever your skills, they can be directed to where they’ll do the most good by visiting volunteersolutions.org, a service of the United Way of Buffalo and Erie County.
84. Watch fireworks from the rooftop of a downtown building. If you don’t know someone with a key, then you’ll have to be creative. Maybe break some laws. You’ve got lots of chances—the Bisons put on a display every Friday home game. Then there the Fourth of July and the Friendship Festival on June 28-30.
85. Whittle something. It’s a good idea to carry a pocketknife in the summer anyway, in case you should need to steal some peony blossoms from a neighbor’s garden. That knife has other uses, however: try whittling. Make a personal totem.
86. Visit the places where Buffalo 66 was filmed. This is apparently a popular request among visiting artists to Soundlab, especially the Japanese.Ah, konnichiwa! Of course, and don’t ask us why we know this, the big attraction associated with this movie seems to be the strip bar out by the Ford plant on Route 5 in Woodlawn. Virtually anywhere you look you’ll see examples of the Buffalo upper/lower doubles, gas stations, and motels you see in the movie, but if that’s not edgy enough for your hip tourist friends, why not take them out to the Gowanda Correctional Facility, where the prison scenes were filmed?
87. For one week, shop only at local farmer’s markets. The Elmwood-Bidwell Market will do, but trek out to Clinton-Bailey as well.
88. Walk the pier at the foot of West Ferry. If you’re brave, swim with the neighborhood kids in the Black Rock Canal.
89. Take some friends down to the CPO Club, while you still can. Hopefully, by the time you take this bit of advice, the club will have renewed its liquor license.
90. Go sailing, or take sailing lessons at Seven Seas Sailing Center. If nothing else, watch the sailboat races on Wednesday nights. It’s a great big lake. Find out more about Seven Seas at sevenseassailing.com.
91. Volunteer at Buffalo Blue Bicycle on a Thursday night. If only for the free beer. Learn more at buffalobluebicycle.org.
92. Watch rowers from the steps of the Frank Lloyd Wright boathouse. When’s the last time you were in that kind of physical shape? Were you ever?
93. Make time for a few rounds of golf—Frisbee golf, that is. Why get bogged down with expensive equipment and long lines at the tee when the same concept can be enjoyed with a simple plastic disk? While you can find actual Frisbee golf courses at Evangola State Park and Joseph Davis State Park in the town of Porter, we prefer guerilla disk golf, in which players ad lib holes as they wander through parks, neighborhoods, and college campuses. For an added challenge, try using glow-in-the-dark Frisbees at night.
94. Drink on patios that face the sun. Summer is too short to spend it in the shadows.
95. Bring champagne to parties this summer. It’s classy, it doesn’t have to be expensive, and folks will love you for it.
96. Pick your own berries. There are plenty of places to do this in Western New York—too many to list, in fact. Visit pickyourown.org for a guide ot pick-your-own farms in the region (or wherever you happen to be this summer).
97. Follow the Seaway Trail. Given the price of gas, this is an expensive proposition—unless you ride a motorcycle. But if you can swing it, and you’ve never done it, this is a great road trip with lots of charming stops along the way. Read about the route at seawaytrail.com.
98. Buy something besides food at an art festival. Take your time. Get something you like. Don’t be taken in by this year’s fad. Buy local. The Allentown Art Festival (and, better yet, Allen West) is June 14-15; the Elmwood Festival of the Arts is August 23-24; the Lewiston Arts Festival is August 8-9.
99. Seek out small carnivals. In church parking lots and village parks. If you stumble across one, ask one of the ride operators where they’re going next.
100. Save up for your winter heating bills.
On Saturday night, May 21st, the southern half of Delaware Park sustained significant damage due to vandalism. The Marcy Casino building (199 Lincoln Pkwy) was the victim of graffiti on several of its columns and walls as well as the elevator for the handicapped. The Ivy Bridge in Rumsey Woods was spray painted. The decorative top of the ornamental fountain in the Rose Garden was snapped off. The slide at the children’s playground was maliciously destroyed by caving in its base and the top being tied up with rope.
The damage to the park has been estimated to be in the thousands.
- Buffalo Rising
This is the type of senseless crime that pisses me the hell off. These assholes have no idea how beautiful our parks are and honestly these dickheads need to be dealt with.