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Ben Tsujimoto

Ben works on the digital side of Gusto, writing mainly about things to do and food-and-drink. He's the editor of The Buffalo News' soccer blog, BN Soccer, and coordinates the Smiles photo galleries. He attended Houghton College, lives off of Hertel and says he smiled a little too aggressively for his profile picture.


Gusto

While there might not be any mules named Sal, there's lots to be done this week by the Erie Canal. (Sorry if that song gets stuck in your head). Aside from the Erie County Fair, Canal Fest of the Tonawandas offers the longest opportunity to take part, touching on two separate weekends and five weekdays with activities to appease both kids and adults. The bustling can…

Gusto

A tiny, easy-to-miss restaurant on Rhode Island Street in Buffalo's West Side, Las Puertas has once again earned national recognition despite its humble surroundings. After a 2018 feature in the New York Times, Victor Parra Gonzalez's Mexican restaurant will appear on the Cooking Channel's "The Best Thing I Ever Ate," featuring Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian, at 9 p.m. Jul…

Gusto

The Buffalo-area has reached the pinnacle of its festival season, with annual giants such as Taste of Buffalo, Jam in the Valley, Queen of Heaven and Canal Fest all running this weekend. These four festivals all cater to different interests, too, with the Taste focusing on food, JiTV celebrating country music artists big and small, Queen of Heaven pitching carnival ride…

Gusto

The new Jazzboline Restaurant & Bar, next to the Reikart House in Snyder, has a curious mantra: It aims for "elegance without pretension," as well as "complex simplicity." A project of Iskalo Development, Jazzboline soft-opened in late June at 5010 Main St., Amherst, the final product of a more than $6 million endeavor just off the Main Street west exit of the I-290…

Festivals

Why does Buffalo's summer stampede by so quickly? It's likely because there's so much more scheduled during the week, in addition to jam-packed weekends, that the whole concept of time becomes a blur. Though June, July and August can feel frenetic, Buffalonians understand how crucial it is to take advantage of warm temperatures. The Tall Ships and Fourth of July holi…

Gusto

There's not one correct approach to eating at the Taste of Buffalo, but entering with at least a simple plan can make a difference when exploring the largest two-day food festival in the United States. The iconic summer event runs from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. July 13 and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. July 14 in Niagara Square and north on Delaware Avenue. There's no cost to wander the fe…

Sports

Sometimes it takes a moment of brilliance from an unexpected source to keep postseason dreams alive. That's what FC Buffalo experienced in Friday's dramatic 2-2 draw against the Erie Commodores at Gannon University. Subbed on in the 90th minute, seldom-used reserve Taner Bay cracked a wonder-strike that froze Erie goalkeeper Chris Ralph and salvaged a road point for the…

Gusto

Fireworks across the area may have left ears ringing into Friday morning, but the colorful explosions were merely the first spark of another busy weekend ahead. Don Felder, the former guitarist for the Eagles who was integral in the timeless riffs of "Hotel California," will rock Ellicottville with Caitlin Koch, a country singer-songwriter who embarked on a musical care…

Food and Drink

Twelve tall ships will sail into Buffalo's inner harbor from July 4-7, attracting visitors to Canalside who may not regularly frequent the downtown hot spot. (Good luck with the parking!) Long a desert in terms of food and drink options, Canalside and its surrounding neighborhood is now filled with several appetizing options within walking distance of the dozen hulls – …

Gusto

A nod to Buffalo's fame as a 19th-century port city and the city's intimate connection with the Great Lakes, 12 tall ships from around the world will converge upon the waterfront from July 4-7 in a festival dubbed Basil Port of Call. It's a special time, News contributor Michael Farrell explains, and the eye-catching fleet is here for more than just ogling from afar. Ti…

Sports

Farouk Majeed needed a left defender. The Journey's End soccer coach peered down his sideline, weighing his options. An older, bigger Eritrean opponent had already scored a second goal, and Majeed didn't want to concede more. From a spectator's standpoint, his options for substitutes were fascinating. Kids who'd escaped war, poverty and oppression in Sudan, Afghanistan …

Gusto

The collaborative spirit among Buffalo breweries has been mentioned regularly since the local craft-beer boom began buzzing in 2015. This sense of togetherness can be explained by the common mission to encourage consumers to drink local brews instead of supporting corporate giants such as Budweiser or Coors. Whether it's from an urge to support the local economy or simp…

Sports

The pride of nations will be at stake at LaSalle Park this weekend as the World Refugee Day soccer tournament has announced its accepted teams and structure. Bhutan, Vietnam, Sudan, Somalia and Kenya are among the regions represented, with a diverse team from Journey's End Refugee Services also returning for its second year. Overall, 12 teams - comprising mostly refugee…

Gusto

There's a tendency for Buffalo natives to become insular, like when we adore when outsiders pump us up and lash out defensively when others put us down. While some might view these knee-jerk reactions as negative and excessive, they're also signs that Buffalonians are fiercely proud of their hometown. World Refugee Day and the Taste of Diversity, both running this weeke…

Sports

The Buffalo & District Soccer League season has surpassed the halfway mark, and story-lines abound. Few will be surprised to see BSC Raiders and Amherst Sharpshooters at the top of the table, and one of the teams promoted from the championship division - Pendleton United - still win-less. But the first seven weeks of the season have been littered with surprises, wit…