Samantha Maziarz Christmann, The Buffalo News
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Samantha Maziarz Christmann


Coffee Culture has closed its Elmwood Avenue location.The Canada-based cafe chain was one of the first tenants to occupy 448 Elmwood, a mixed-use development on the site of a former dilapidated KFC restaurant. The property was redeveloped in 2011 to the tune of $3 million and contains residential space on the upper levels with retail space on its first floor. The project w…

One look at the racks of seersucker trousers, rows of silk bow ties and stacks of piled-high argyle socks, and you’d be forgiven for thinking nothing has changed at O’Connell’s Clothing since it first opened in 1959.But look deeper than the Madras sport coats, needlepoint cuff links and Irish tweed caps and you’ll see that, while O’Connell’s preppy, Ivy League …

Every time I write about how to save money on books, I almost don’t even mention libraries – taking for granted that every thrifty person knows the library is the place to go for reading material.But books are just the start of it.“We’re not yesterday’s library,” said Mary Jean Jakubowski, director of the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library system. “We’v…

As we pause this Memorial Day to remember the great men and women who died in service to our country, we realize any efforts to thank our troops and veterans will always fall short.But that doesn’t keep us from trying.As a small token of appreciation, here is how several area businesses have chosen to salute veterans.Broadway Driving Range & Miniature Golf. Owned by Viet…

Mentholatum is hoping it’s hip to be square.The Orchard Park company originally found great success with Softlips in the 1990s, when it took lip balm out of the conventional chubby ChapStick-style tube and gave it a sleek makeover, putting it into a slender, feminine stick that better appealed to women.The company is innovating again with a new line called Softlips Cube,…

The Western New York retail landscape is adding another notch to its designer belt.Nordstrom Rack has confirmed it will build its first area store in Amherst’s Boulevard Consumer Square. The store will be located directly adjacent to Target, to the east of Target’s entrance.“It will involve some tenant movement and a building expansion,” said Eric Recoon, vice pres…

Tops Friendly Markets has put plans to open a second Orchard Fresh location back on the shelf for now.The company had said last year it was looking for a place to put a second store by early 2014 at the earliest. But now those plans are on hold.Tops said the Orchard Park store is doing well and that the company has identified potential locations for future expansion, but t…

When it comes to spring cleaning, I’d rather organize my basement 10 times than sift through a single mound of paper. But that dreaded task of sorting and filing documents is an important one, even in the digital age.Knowing what you should keep and what you can toss is the hardest part. Here are some guidelines that should make the process a little easier.Just be sure t…

Buffalo-born Mark Russell brought his trademark satire and comedic melodies to downtown Buffalo on Sunday, entertaining a sold-out crowd of 320 people in the Central Library and helping to raise thousands of dollars for libraries across Erie County.Russell, who hosted the Mark Russell Comedy Special for 30 years on WNED-TV and Public Television, opened with a musical numbe…

For thousands of students across Western New York, today is the first day of the rest of their lives.Several schools in the region – including the University at Buffalo, Villa Maria College, Alfred State University and Genesee Community College – held their commencements Sunday, unleashing another generation of enthusiastic students into a shaky job market.UB President…

A popular retailer of yoga, running and cycling gear has opened in the Walden Galleria.Lululemon Athletica on Friday cut the ribbon on its new store, which is located on the lower level across from the Apple store.The designer sportswear retailer formerly had a showroom at 4476 Main St. in Amherst, but closed it to open the full-sized store at the mall.Lululemon will hold …

NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE, Ont. – Canada fired the first shot in the battle of the outlet malls Thursday, cutting the ribbon on its giant open-air mall here.The Outlet Collection at Niagara was filled with thousands of eager shoppers looking for the kinds of bargains and designer brands they could only get in the United States until now.“We are sending a clear message to the…

Buffalo will soon willkommen a popular German beer hall to its city center.Hofbräuhaus, the U.S. version of Bavaria’s 400-year-old famous original, hopes to have a Buffalo location by next summer.Kevin Townsell, owner of Shannon Pub in Tonawanda, owns the local franchise rights for the restaurant and is putting together an investment group to get it funded.“We’ve be…

Another one of Western New York’s iconic, family-owned taverns is turning out its lights, but it won’t be dark for long.The Deerhead Inn, a fixture in West Seneca for 52 years, served its last fish fry Friday.But it will return to life again next month, when another storied Buffalo establishment – Scharf’s Schiller Park German restaurant, relocates from its longtim…

The battle of the outlet malls on opposite sides of the border is heating up.Fashion Outlets of Niagara Falls has released a partial list of stores that will be new to the American mall once its $71 million expansion is completed in the fall.They include:American Eagle, Aerie, Asics, Clarks, Crocs, Destination Maternity, Disney, Forever 21, Gold Toe, Helly Hansen, IT’SUG…