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From NYC to Buffalo: Social worker finds a home in WNY

Growing up outside of New York City in Rockland County, Keri Fisher dreamed of living in Manhattan. But when she finally made the big move, she only lasted a year and a half before realizing it wasn't for her. That’s when she began looking for jobs outside of the Big Apple. Ultimately she found a job, and her home, in the Queen City.

“I immediately loved it," said Fisher. "There’s a lot of things to do. There’s great restaurants, there’s beautiful parks. It’s really the people, too. The people are so friendly.”

Fisher made the move to Buffalo in 2016, living off of Chippewa, behind the Delaware North building. She loved being able to walk to Canalside to watch sunsets and all the things the city had to offer.

“It was a great mix of a city atmosphere, but it wasn’t so busy and hectic and stressful,” said Fisher.

She also immediately noticed the difference between New Yorkers and Western New Yorkers.

"I remember walking down the street and people would, like, say hello. And strangers would want to talk to you. And I remember getting very defensive at first because, why are you trying to talk to me? You’re a stranger, I don’t talk to strangers," said Fisher.  “But everybody here, they’re just, they’re so friendly. The pace of life is calmer, people are happier.”

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Keri Fisher with her best friends from her hometown, Dana Skinner, Michelle Cusano and Kaitlin Fish. (Photo courtesy Keri Fisher)

Name: Keri Fisher

Age: 32

Current Location:  Lake View

Previous Location:  Manhattan

Love most about Buffalo: The people; the area is beautiful; there is more nature

Miss most about NYC: Family and friends

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Since then, Fisher has changed jobs, built a home in Lake View with her boyfriend, Kevin Armbrust, and fallen more in love with the City of Good Neighbors.

“There’s such a big community feel,” said Fisher. “Everyone has the same cause, everyone likes the same team, so no matter where you go, everyone’s rooting for the same thing.”

Keri Fisher with her siblings, Kelsey Pellicone, John Fisher, Andrea Wooster and Kaitlyn Althoff. (Photo courtesy Keri Fisher)

Fisher says she never would have been able to build a house in her hometown of Stony Point.  And while she loves and misses her family and childhood home, she is looking forward to raising a family of her own in her current neighborhood.

“You can really have a good lifestyle here. The cost of living is just great,” said Fisher, who has bonded with her neighbors who are always lending a hand. Whether it’s helping sod the backyard, bring in the garbage cans or help with the sump pump, Fisher’s neighbors truly live up to the City of Good Neighbors nickname.

Fisher is a social worker with Lake Shore Central Schools in Angola, and loves spending her free time visiting Delaware Park, Canalside, Niagara Falls and Chestnut Ridge.

“I show everybody how different Buffalo is,” said Fisher, who uses Snapchat and Instagram to showcase the Queen City. “People have no idea how beautiful it is here.”

Keri Fisher with her boyfriend, Kevin Armbrust, Katie Wilson and Tim Wilson. enjoying the World's Largest Disco. (Photo courtesy Keri Fisher)

Fisher’s parents, four siblings and seven nieces and nephews still live in the New York City area. That’s the hardest part about living in Buffalo, Fisher said. She says she’s always trying to convince her family to move to Western New York. But since her family members are all New Yorkers at heart, she’ll settle for trying to get her relatives to Buffalo for the World’s Largest Disco, an event she says is the best night of the year.

“It is just so much fun, everyone’s welcome,” said Fisher. “All the generations are there. Everyone is in such a good mood. You’re high-fiving strangers as you walk through the crowd.”

While her family stays in New York City, Fisher, is finally home.

“I have moved around a lot, I studied abroad twice, I’ve lived in Florida and Manhattan. And Buffalo is the first place I’ve been in my entire life that I really, truly want to stay,” said Fisher.

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If you or anyone you know has a story to tell about moving back or to Buffalo, or about moving away, email alison.russo19@gmail.com.

Alison Russo grew up in the Southtowns and lives in a suburb of Kansas City with her husband, Joe, and their two children. She works in television news and as a freelance writer.

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