It’s always hard to say goodbye, but these events will help you send summer off with a bang. From harvest festivals and equinox celebrations to fashion shows and artist demonstrations, there’s plenty to look forward to this fall in Western New York.
Riedel Wine & Beer Tasting Experience
Join experts from 11th-generation glass manufacturer Riedel Crystal of Austria for this annual fundraiser to benefit Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute. An educational evening, Riedel will demonstrate how using the right stemware impacts and enhances the flavor and finish of wines and beer. Guests will enjoy live music, auctions, hors d’oeuvres and a variety of outstanding beverages, including wines rated at 90+ points. Each will also leave with a set of Riedel tasting glasses and an etched beer glass (a value of over $170). Event begins at 6 p.m. Valet parking available.
Location: Buffalo Niagara Convention Center, 153 Franklin St., Buffalo
Bemus Point Fall Fest
Known for its summer outdoor concerts, Bemus knows how to do it up in the autumn too. The entire village is decked out in fall themes for this 9th annual event sponsored by many of the specialty shops around town. Enjoy great shopping deals and "Draw-A-Leaf" discounts, along with a street market, petting zoo and pony rides. Local restaurants will also be serving up menu items specially created for the event. Most shops open from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. all three days. Street market runs 10 a.m. -5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Location: Main Street, Bemus Point
Meatball Street Brawl
Led by Osteria 166, this second annual challenge welcomes 20 of the best meatball makers in the area to duke it out for bragging rights. Enjoy wine, beer, desserts, the Bills away game on a big-screen TV, and of course mouthwatering meatballs from 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Proceeds go to local charities.
Location: 166 Franklin St. (W. Mohawk Street will be shut down between Franklin and Delaware)
Gala at the Gardens
Attendees of this lavish annual fundraiser will be treated to a cocktail reception, live and silent auctions, basket raffles, wine wall and sit-down dinner catered by Oliver’s. Gala goers are encouraged to wear black and/or white to reflect the close-to-equal day and night hours of the autumnal equinox. Event runs 6-10 p.m.
Location: Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, 2655 South Park Ave., Buffalo
Contact: 827-1584 ext. 203
Artify the Park
Prepare for a leisurely autumn stroll through the "Crown Jewel of the Erie County Parks system," Chestnut Ridge Park, to admire the bountiful talent of local artists. Stop by the various stations where artists will demonstrate their work, answer questions and maybe reveal some of their secrets and techniques. If you’re an artist, pack up your paints and easels and come work alongside the area’s most talented artists in this second annual Plein Air event, which runs from 11 a.m-4 p.m. Event also includes hands-on crafts and activities for children and adults of all ages.
Location: Chestnut Ridge Park,
Admission: Free for artists and general public. Nominal cost for some activities.
Lewiston Harvest Festival
Now in its 34th year, this festival is always a fall favorite for townspeople and visitors alike. Enjoy two full days of crafters, retail and boutique shopping, farmers market, local restaurant fare and more along the closed-off center of charming Lewiston. Event runs 10 a.m-5 p.m. both days and will be held in conjunction with the International Music Festival, which will take place in the Peace Garden. Musical genres range from a Scottish pipe band to Japanese drumming.
Location: Between 4th and 7th streets, Lewiston
Admission: Both festivals are free
Fashion Show with a Twist
Supporting a worthwhile organization is always in style. This benefit for Child & Family Services’ Haven House – Erie County’s only licensed domestic violence shelter – features fabulous fashions, must-have jewelry and plenty of boutique shopping. Friends and supporters of Child & Family Services will model, including John Miller of the Buffalo Bills. Event starts at 5:30 and also features a basket raffle and sit-down dinner.
Location: Samuel’s Grande Manor, 8750 Main St Williamsville, NY 14221
Admission: $35 per person; $300 table of ten
Blues & Booze
Treat your eyes, ears and taste buds on this scenic two-hour train ride, complete with classic Blues and your choice of wine served with cheese, crackers and chocolate; or beer served with pretzels, peanuts and chocolate. Keepsake glass and museum admission included. Advance ticket purchase necessary; reserve by Oct. 1. Must be 21 or over; photo ID required at check-in. Arrive at 1 p.m. for train departure at 2 p.m.
Location: Medina Railroad, 530 West Ave., Medina
Admission: First Class, $60; Coach, $45
Bill Murray, Jan Vogler and Friends: New Worlds
In what may be one of his most surprising roles yet, actor Bill Murray lends his narration, vocals and humor to chamber music performed by renowned cellist Jan Vogler. The spirited collaboration begins at 8 p.m. and melds readings of classic American literature with the songs of Gershwin, Foster, Mancini and Bernstein.
Location: Kleinhans Music Hall,
3 Symphony Circle, Buffalo
Indie Author Day
Buffalo has a rich literary history that dates back to Mark Twain’s days as the editor of the Buffalo Express in 1869 and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s formative years spent in the Queen City. This event helps raise awareness of our current local authors, whose works will be for sale. For writers, there will be presentations on how to market and get your work published, as well as other resources for independent authors. Celebrated internationally, our Indie Author Day runs from 11 a.m-3 p.m.
Location: Central Library, 1 Lafayette Square, Buffalo
Annual Water Gala
Come down to RiverWorks for this fundraiser for Let Them LOL, a grassroots organization committed to providing clean water to underprivileged communities worldwide through sustainable development. The evening includes dinner, live music, community basket auction, silent auction, live auction, photo op with red carpet, walk through experience and a presentation. Doors open at 5 p.m. for auctions and hors d’oeuvres; dinner and presentation follow at 6:30 p.m.
Location: Buffalo RiverWorks, 359 Ganson St., Buffalo