Who's Your City?, by Richard Florida
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Archive for the ‘Buffalo’ Category

Why Buffalo/Upstate NY?

Thursday, September 4th, 2008

I was born and raised in upstate NY, outside Buffalo, and I live there for now. NY (State) has pretty landscapes, some arts, and some education… but it is the sorriest excuse for a state. This is not a political message, but politics has made living in NY (State) what it is today (POOR). Unless you live in Albany or NYC, you have no representation. The people with power are not the politicians. They are the public works, medical, and teachers unions, and other special interests who own the politicians. To feed their “needs”, NY has created bureaucracy and high taxes that are unprecedented by any other state. It is so hard to do business here, and it shows. There are so many layers of government (and none of them plan to consolidate or go away) that nothing will change. It’s been bad for 30 years, and just when you think it can’t get any worse- it does. Why do I live here? Family. I’m waiting for them to move or for me to lose my patience. A lot of people here will put on a pretty face and deny any bad press that Buffalo and upstate NY receive. We call them homers. They live in denial and probably do not travel very often. I do, and I know what is out there… much more prosperous areas. I hope it all dies soon.

Sent by Andy from Buffalo, NY


Wednesday, July 30th, 2008

… As a print journalist of 35+ yrs. in the mainstream-&-gay media on both coasts (17 with “Billboard Magazine” in L.A. Vegas & the Bflo./Rochester, NY markets, I lived-&-worked in many other city/regions. But NONE can compare with western New York, it’s people, the 4-seasons, low cost-of-living, vibrant arts/theatre scene/architecture (includes 5-Frank Lloyd Wright creations!), pro sports teams, etc. It really is America’s “Best Kept Secret” ’til now!?!- I know.

Let’s hear those familiar “snow/winter”-&-Bflo. Bills Super Bowl jokes. But REALLY people!?! Snow MELTS, it’s GOOD to have a cleaned-up Lake Erie (one of the largest fresh water venues in-the-world!) & such vibrant greenery.

This Summer-of-’08, it does look like the “Land of Oz!” with all-the-rain we’ve been having. & Fall!?! “Forget-about-it!” The riot of bright-colored leaves HURTS-thee-EYES!?! & we’re now planning a major, state of-the-art Weather Museum for the lakefront to celebrate our good fortune. Just re-opened the re-watered Erie Canal Slip, which is being developed into a major historical site destination downtown! … Like the arts? Try restored Shea’s Theatre for the Performing Arts (reviewed Prince’s 1st. EVER concert here!), where major 1st. run, Broadway shows now appear. The Bflo. Philharmonic Orchestra is housed at acoustically-famous Kleinhans Music Hall (Summer’s at nearby Artpark in Niagara Falls, NY) & the A lbright-Knox Art Gallery is known worldwide for its modern art collection! + there is the new Burchfield/Penney Gallery at Bflo. State Univ. across-from-the Knox! & many more, smaller galleries! America’s Fair, one of the nation’s largest celebrations, starts Aug. 6th & there’s numerous ethnic festivals as-well-as other smaller, county fairs. – & “Yes,” the Bills still play at the 80,000-seat Ralph Wilson (55,000 season tickets sold this yr. already & almost ALL home games sold-out!) Reviewed the Rolling Stones & Jackson Five there. Our Bflo. Sabres skate at the 18,000-capacity HSBC Arena downtown. (5,000 fans cheered outside during a recent playoff game!) & the Triple A Bflo. Bisons play at the nearby Dunn Tire Park, which seats 18,000! (not bad for outdoor concerts either!)…

Now the restaurants: WOW!?! Take-you-PICK!?! From the famous Anchor Bar – home of the ORIGINAL Bflo. Chicken Wing – to so many others with the great ethnic Italian, Polish, German, Lebanese, Hispani c , African-American foods!?! Sahlen hot dogs, LaNova Pizza (Hillary & Bill Clinton’s fav!), beef-on-weck (mmm!), our amazing food stores with LOW prices compared to other cities! You CAN’T-go-WRONG!!!- & the economic/job scene’s getting brighter, especially with the Medical Corridor downtown with Bflo. General Hospital, Roswell Park Cancer Research Center & related university/private sector spin-off businesses. Blue Cross/Blue Shield rennovated a new, impressive office building near WKBW TV-7’s studios. A new, federal court skycraper’s rising nearby. & the Seneca nation’s building their 0-million Bflo. Creek Casino/Hotel near the Erie Canal site in the Cobblestone District. 1,000 new jobs!…

A plug for my hometown of East Aurora, 18-miles southeast of Bflo. The arts-&-crafts Roycroft Inn-&-Campus is here as-well-as the headquarters for Fisher-Price Toys-&-Moog, Inc. (a major NASA contractor). Not forgetting Vidlers, an original 5-&-dime store on Main Street & numerous horse f arms around-the-area. We WERE the racing capital of-the-world in la late 1800’s!- & we do have an active, vibrant LGBT community in WNY with many groups, organizations. I sing in the Bflo. Gay Mens Chorus, which just attended their 2nd intl. Gay-&-Lesbian Choral Assoc. festival in Miami Beach, Fla. My late-mother helped start PFLAG here. I’ve also sung with la Westminster Presbyterian Church Choir (on-&-off for 21-yrs.!) + my 1st. book, about my career/life’s, in NYC about to-be-published. & I was listed in “Who’s Who in America – in the Media” the last, 2-yrs!… But, LAST-&-BEST is Niagara Falls, NY. If you’ve NEVER been or even if-you-have, it’s an UNFORGETABLE experience. Our side, which includes Goat Island & the Three Sisters Island (the U.S.’s 1st. ever Natl. Park!), is more natural-&-less commercial than our commercial Canadian neighbor’s. There’s SO much-to-see & do! Plan on at LEAST-a-week there!- So, YEAH: Reconsider & rethink WNY, Buffalo, the Niagara Frontier. Y o u’ll THANK-me-LATER!!! See you HERE!!!

Sent by Hanford Searl Jr. from Buffalo, NY