From the renaissance of the Waterfront and downtown's steady growth, to the major airport expansion and a revived arts and cultural scene, New York's second-largest city is booming again.
Buffalo's ethnic diversity includes people of Greek, Irish, Italian, African American, Polish, Scottish, Latino and German decent, to name a few. That, combined with a blue-collar mentality, creates a solid foundation for the community to build and re-build. And that it has, by pumping millions into its downtown showpiece Theater District, by expanding the Buffalo Niagara International Airport, by creating waterfront housing and establishing a Metro Rail line from HSBC Arena to the South Campus of the State University at Buffalo. It has diversified its economy, moving from strictly "rust belt" industries to services and tourism, then to high tech and fiber optics. It has put up hotels, banks, office buildings and a state-of-the-art convention center.
Allentown, Bailey-Lovejoy and Delaware
The National Historic District of Allentown is home to both the Wilcox Mansion (where Teddy Roosevelt was inaugurated) and the Allentown Art Festival. It's also where you can find popular local haunts like The Old Pink, Gabriel's Gate and the Allen Street Dress Shop.
Bailey-Lovejoy is committed to preserving its railroad-rich past through the Iron Island Museum and the annual neighborhood festival. Places like Hennepin Park and the Buffalo Fire Historical Museum are major draws for people in surrounding neighborhoods.
Delaware Park is the jewel of the Frederick Law Olmsted-designed park system, the historic Forest Lawn Cemetery, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery and Cofeld Judaic Museum of Temple Beth Zion are all a part of the Delaware District. Polonia features traditional Broadway Market food vendors and the New York Central Terminal.
It is here that the 1929 Art Deco masterpiece, Buffalo City Hall, rises high above the tree tops. Also note the French Renaissance-style Ellicott Square Building finished in 1896 as the largest office building in the world at that time.
Within the compact downtown is where you'll find the hive of performing arts activity known as the Theater District. Shea's Performing Arts Center, with its classic Baroque interior, serves as an anchor for the 20-block Theater District. You'll find plenty of night life in the Chippewa Club Zone, which rose from the ashes of the former red light district. Buffalo Place has a pedestrian mall and a reputation for being festival central. If ice hockey's your thing, you'll be interested to find the HSBC Arena (formerly the Marine-Midland) where the NHL Buffalo Sabres skate.
And it's true: Buffalo chicken wings actually were created here, thanks to a stray shipment of wings that made its way to the Anchor Bar in the mid-1960s. Buffalo is also home to the Beef on Weck sandwich and it is the Friday fish fry capital of the world.
Not to be overlooked, Buffalo is a mere 25 miles from what has been called one of the seven natural wonders of the world. For 11 million visitors a year, the breath-taking Niagara Falls are attraction enough to check out Buffalo.
The "City of Good Neighbors" offers all of its visitors small-town hospitality in a big-city environment. Explore the ethnically-diverse cuisine, high-caliber theater, the mansions of Elmwood Avenue and the Chippewa Club Zone's sizzling nightlife.
With Lake Erie and Canada to the west, Buffalo is bordered on its other three sides by suburban areas that are also rich in history and heritage. To the north and northeast lie Tonawanda and Amherst, the first combines a strong industrial base with beautiful parks and natural scenery and the latter is home to the huge University at Buffalo North Campus.
To the east is Cheektowaga, "Land of the Crabapple," with the Buffalo Niagara International Airport and the Walden Galleria Mall, the largest mall in Western NY. To the south and southeast lie the aptly named South-towns: Lackawanna, Hamburg, West Seneca, Orchard Park and East Aurora, that combine a range of heavy industry and farms, shopping malls and village boutiques, modern condos and 19th century architectural gems.