Nancy Parisi - The Buffalo News

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With a flourish of double-bottle-pouring and some combustion, The Blazing Monk is served, a current winter cocktail at Vera Pizzeria. Bar Manager Jason Wood, who has held that position for a year and a half, explains that the hot cocktail is "a play on the hot toddy" with its classic combination of liquor, hot water, lemon and honey. The drink is served in a glass mug. W…

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The Iron Island Museum and the WNY Food Truck Association hosted the Iron Island Food Truck Rodeo on Friday, Oct. 23, 2015. The family Halloween event featured food trucks, haunted tours of the museum, psychic readings, music and more.

Movies

The drama happening at a table of four diners (two married couples) – and the attendant conversation and psychological warfare – is at the core of the movie “The Dinner,” directed by Italian Ivano De Matteo. This is the second recent loose adaptation of the best-selling 2009 novel of the same name by Dutch author Herman Koch. “The Dinner,” is subtitled and is i…

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With the late-summer sun still shining, saxophonist Kenny G and band played the first of two shows in the Riviera Theatre and Performing Arts Center on Friday night. The venue was about three-quarters full with couples and families. The second, at 8 o’clock, was sold out.He was touring in support of “Brazilian Nights,” his 14th studio album – a tribute to bossa no…

Music

Chair-toting, summer hat-wearing jazz lovers arrived early on Sunday afternoon for their slice of shade to watch the fourth Buffalo News Summer Jazz Series concert. Performing a well-curated array of standards underneath the blue tent before the steps of Albright-Knox Art Gallery were musical/life partners Janice Mitchell and Jim Beishline.The vocalist and pianist performe…

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“Beautiful” was the recurrent word heard throughout Sunday’s 20th annual Masten Jazz Festival within the grounds of Martin Luther King Jr. Park on the city’s East Side. During each of the hourlong sets – and interset banter by co-emcees Mayor Byron Brown and Masten District City Council Member Demone A. Smith – beautiful was the word of choice to describe the m…

Lifestyles

VARYSBURG – Celebrating and convening in Buffalo Hill Village on Friday, thousands paid homage to all grand and sonic things country – and American – at Jam in the Valley, the three-day extravaganza now in its 21st incarnation.The tips of a few windmills just over the treeline barely moved under a semi-cloudy sky. A gleaming, sky-blue replica of Lady Liberty on a nea…

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Kicking off the popular Tuesdays in the Park concert series at Artpark on Tuesday night was Widespread Panic, jam band extraordinaire based in Athens, Ga. The band had a vastly different experience, as did its fans, than the show that happened at the very same venue almost exactly one year ago. On June 18 of last year, Widespread Panic began its set (sans opening act, same…

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In the space of six summery days, classic prog rock-loving Western New Yorkers had the opportunity to see the two factions of the band Styx perform. On Aug. 19, Styx played Artpark in Lewiston; on Aug. 24, former Styx singer Dennis DeYoung played Gratwick Riverside Park. After an on-again, off-again relationship that ultimately ended with an acrimonious parting because o…

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Performing before a large canvas circus sideshow banner with his name floating above a curious crown/wagon-wheel hybrid decked out with stag horns, Dennis DeYoung and band headlined a gig at Gratwick Park in North Tonawanda on Sunday night. It was billed as “The Music of Styx.” He penned a number of the band’s hits. Vocalist and keyboardist DeYoung had a well-public…

On a genuine summer night – perfectly balmy and not a trace of autumnal vibes that have been lurking about as of late – classic rock band Styx headlined the second-last Artpark Tuesdays in the Park concert. It was sold out. So many Tuesdays, so many storm clouds this concert season. But this night was a perfect confluence of well-preserved classic rock, an elated crow…

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With an elaborate set that blasted retina-searing flames, zip lines and trademark costumes and face paint, Kiss delivered a solid night of hard rock ’n’ roll kabuki theater. If the band’s Wednesday night gig in the Darien Lake Performing Arts Center was shy of a sellout, the sheer volume of fan adoration – the Kiss Army as they are called – made it a mega sonic t…

Festivals

Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park (museum, gardens, memorials, docked boats and Liberty Hound restaurant) will be the waterside site for the annual Tribute to Our Troops and fundraiser from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Aug. 19. Rotary Club of Buffalo, led by event chairman Paul Marzello, is co-producing the event. Canalside, Buffalo’s ever-blossoming waterfront cultur…

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Jazz-rock ensemble Steely Dan, fronted by co-founders/co-creators Donald Fagen and Walter Becker, with sterling touring band, played Seneca Events Center on Friday night. The show, part of a three-month theater tour (as it’s called in the industry), fell midway between a large club gig and stadium spectacle, and was ultra-produced show business with tinges of improv. Th…