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Donna Propis, 67, rushes to the yoga class she takes twice a week at the Amherst Senior Center. She’s in a hurry but the hooting from the lounge makes her stop for a moment to see what’s going on. A group of seniors are clapping, sighing, and catcalling as two 80-somethings square off against each other … at the bowling alley … on the computer screen. Totally engag…

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Western New York is like “a big secret." At least that’s how Christie Rothschild, the president of the Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors sees it. She joked, “We should do more PR on what a great place it is to live.” Well, the “secret” is starting to get out. In the last year, Forbes magazine put Buffalo at the top of its list for most affordable citie…

There is a hierarchy in any family. I am the youngest of seven kids, so our house was very much a battleground of wills. My parents, of course, were in charge, dispersing responsibilities to maintain a properly functioning household. Dad had absolute and unquestioned control over every manner that mom didn’t feel like governing. Once you got past my parents, there was an…

Buffalo Magazine

Let’s face it; very few husbands are good at everything (even though they might argue otherwise). When it comes to home repairs, they usually fall into three categories: 1) those who tackle any project with ease; 2) those who think they can; and 3) those who call an electrician to change a light bulb. “I definitely have my limitations and know pretty quickly if a jo…

Buffalo Magazine

Zandra Azariah Cunningham has her future pretty well planned. She’ll graduate from Tapestry Charter School in June, attend Nardin Academy in the fall, and then college. Along the way, she’ll grow her product line, hire more staff, and plan her manufacturing facility. Unlikely? Not at all. At 13, Cunningham is one of Western New York’s youngest entrepreneurs. She s…

Food + Drink

Summer is on the horizon, which means burger season has officially opened. While guys are usually the assigned grillmasters at home, what man doesn’t enjoy a burger even more when it’s expertly prepared? Here is an informal and incomplete (yet highly satisfying) burger tour of WNY that will please not only the man in your life — but everyone else in the family, too. …

Ambient lighting, soothing aromatherapy fragrances, soft music piped in from a sophisticated sound system and a relaxing massage. A luxurious day at the spa? No, just a few new features of the S-Class Mercedes-Benz. And while this euphoria on four wheels may be among the sexier auto features today, cars ranging from high-end to more affordable have more unique (and prac…

Wellness

As the old joke goes: “Marriage is like a deck of cards; it starts with hearts and diamonds, but ends with clubs and spades.” Alas, with 40 to 50 percent of marriages in the United States ending in divorce (Divorcestatistics.org), that may have a kernel of truth. But what about the other 50 percent of marriages? What are their secrets to success? We approached so…

Shopping

For many, bikes were our first tastes of freedom — leaving the doting world of mom and dad behind to pedal toward endless exploration. They took us on our first adventures and to the places we needed to go: the public pool, the neighborhood kickball game. Nickel City Cycles wants to tap into that nostalgia by creating custom bikes that adults will feel comfortable rid…

We’ve all heard the phrase, “There’s an app for that” — and for the most part, it’s true. In 2013 alone, ABI Research estimates that consumers downloaded 56 billion smartphone apps and another 14 billion tablet apps. Portio Research predicts that by 2017, more than 200 billion apps will be downloaded every year. Local firms are diving head first into the eve…

Food + Drink

For many years we’ve dined at Oliver’s on Thanksgiving, so we thought we’d try it for Easter dinner this year. Sometimes I bring my own wine to taste for this column, but I thought this time we’d take advantage of Oliver’s special Sunday wine pricing: half off regular wine and one-third off reserve wine. I went online in advance to check out the list, and found m…

Style

Too tight. Too loose. Too long. Too short. Size four in one store. Size eight in another store. It’s a sizing conundrum, a retail maze without an exit. Picture this: you are desperate for a new pair of skinny jeans — that perfect pair that hugs your hips and lifts your butt without being too tight. You walk into Gap, where you have always worn a size 8, but the size…

Buffalo Magazine

When David Kaplan of Williamsville sees a Playboy magazine, it likely makes him think of his late grandfather, Lou Horwitz. But the reason why may surprise you. Lou Horwitz — along with his friends Charlie Thomas and Norm Richardson — created a revolutionary new car called the Playboy, which made its debut in February 1947. Dubbed “the nation’s new car sensation…

Cars are manufactured to get us from point ‘A’ to point ‘B,’ but they haven’t been about transportation since 1929 when Paul Galvin invented the first car radio. People choose cars to match their style. Sure, economics play a role in whether your ride is pimped or proper, but your car selection still says a lot about you. The Lone Ranger had Silver. You might …

Travel

While there’s something to be said for umbrella-drinks-on-the-beach vacations — and the mental break that comes with them — there are also getaways that expand your mind instead of emptying it. You can spend a week (or a whole summer) exploring some of life’s most important questions just 90 minutes south of Buffalo at The Chautauqua Institution, a 750-acre lake co…