Samantha Christmann - The Buffalo News

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Samantha Christmann

I cover retail for the Buffalo News and write the Discount Diva column each Monday.


Business

Catch the Brose family at a red light and you’ll hear the five Brose children (and even mom and dad) belting “Let it Go,” the Oscar-winning song from Disney’s smash hit “Frozen.”Back at their Cheektowaga home, it’s all Frozen all the time. The four girls – ages 1 through 11 – take turns pretending to be Princess Anna and Queen Elsa, act out scenes from th…

Just a little more than a year after announcing plans to build its first New York store in Cheektowaga, Cabela’s has announced its grand opening date. The store will open at 11 a.m. Aug. 7 – about six weeks ahead of schedule.Cabela’s quick turnaround cuts a stark contrast to the nine-year saga in which Buffalo engaged Bass Pro Shops, Cabela’s biggest competitor. Af…

Last week, I wrote about some really cool activities families can enjoy this summer without breaking the bank.But Western New York has more free family fun than you can shake a Discount Diva column at, so here’s round two.• Young Audiences Western New York. The programming offered by this non-profit group of highly-trained, professional teaching artists could keep you …

Business

Is Paula’s Donuts coming to a corner near you? It could be.Owner Paula Huber is on the lookout for the popular donut shop’s third store, which will be located somewhere in the Southtowns, she confirmed Friday.An exact location has yet to be determined. “We haven’t even started looking yet,” Huber said. “But everyone keeps saying, ‘Come to the Southtowns, come…

Summer begins Saturday, but we’ve been living it up August-style since the mercury eked above 50.Now that the region’s jam-packed schedule of free family events has kicked in, we’re about to really party down.Here are some personal faves.• Kenmore Children’s Concert Series. Cap off your Tuesday nights with free live music on the lawn at Kenmore Middle School, 155…

Featured

Workers are rushing to get Texas de Brazil open by June 24 in the former Hyde Park Steakhouse at the Walden Galleria. The restaurant is a Brazilian churrascaria: waiters travel throughout the dining rooms from table to table with skewers of beef, lamb, pork, chicken and Brazilian sausage. Patrons can choose as many different kinds (and as many helpings) as they please, w…

It looks like the Food and Drug Administration is no longer a threat to the centuries-old practice of aging cheese on wood.The FDA released a statement Wednesday night that seems to put to rest any fears among cheese makers that using wooden boards in their ripening process will lead to citation from FDA inspectors.“To be clear, we have not and are not prohibiting or ban…

Business

Do not mess with our cheese.Artisanal cheese makers, consumers and politicians have come out in force to deliver that message to the Food and Drug Administration after an FDA official said the act of ripening cheese on wooden shelves is not sanitary and does not conform to FDA requirements. That statement, made in a document interpreting food safety law, threw into limbo a…

My father gives the most thoughtful gifts.For Christmas, he gave me a beautiful, vintage 1920s Underwood typewriter. It was much like the ones he used to salvage and bring home for me as a kid, so I could clickety-clack away, pretending to be a journalist.Just a few days ago, he gave me a little quill, ink well and blotter for my dollhouse. He whittled them out of wood and…

When Michael Lucchino and Jackie Kooshoian were kids, they worked side by side in their father Ron Lucchino’s restaurant, wiping down tables and collecting food trays.Today, the brother and sister team are working together to take that same restaurant, Elmwood Taco & Subs, to the next level.After working on it for two years, they’ve found a way to package their family…

Featured

Buffalo’s two most iconic chicken wing restaurants are bringing their rivalry to Transit Road.Anchor Bar franchisees Michael and Anthony Schiappa will open a location this fall almost directly across the street from a Duff’s franchise in the Eastern Hills Mall.The Anchor Bar franchise will take the place of a former Corner Bakery Cafe at 7662 Transit Road on …

Amherst

Buffalo’s two most iconic chicken wing restaurants are bringing their rivalry to Transit Road.Anchor Bar franchisees Michael and Anthony Schiappa will open a location this fall almost directly across the street from a Duff’s franchise in the Eastern Hills Mall.The Anchor Bar franchise will take the place of a former Corner Bakery Cafe at 7662 Transit Road on the Amhers…

Business

TM Montante Development Co. is getting closer to nailing down two crucial tenants for its $63 million project on the site of the former Millard Fillmore Hospital campus at Gates Circle.The YMCA confirmed that it is considering 55,000 square feet of space on the site for a new Buffalo location that would replace its current one on Delaware Avenue just north of Hertel Avenue…

Tops Markets is considering opening another store in downtown Buffalo, a development some hail as a sign the city’s revitalization is taking hold.“Retail is always the last in,” said Michael Schmand, executive director of Buffalo Place. “They wait for the people, they wait for the momentum, and then the retail shows up.”A grocery popping up in the heart of the ci…

The balancing act between preserving the natural landscape and making room for increased development continues in the Southtowns with the proposed building of two separate senior housing complexes on undeveloped land in the Town and Village of Orchard Park.Wheatfield-based builder Calamar Senior Services is proposing the construction of a two-story, 90-unit senior apartmen…