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There’s something to be said for those long, lazy days of summer — luxuriating in the feel of long-craved sunshine on your skin, soaking in the crackle and pop of a backyard fire pit, relaxing the hectic pace of life for a few months. Sometimes, however, you can’t beat the rush of adrenaline that comes with challenging yourself to take on new adventures. The relaxing ca…

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I only started shaking about 10 seconds to showtime. For one night, I played the (minor) role of a mariner in Shakespeare in Delaware Park's "The Tempest," in the name of journalism. I had one simple job. I arrived about an hour to showtime and Angelo Heimowitz, a fellow mariner, guided me through our stage blocking in the opening scene. "The Tempest" opens with a na…

Family

Free swimming lessons are being offered to up to 3,000 children this summer at 26 New York State parks. Enrollment for the program began Monday at Fort Niagara State Park in Niagara County, Long Point State Park on Chautauqua Lake in Chautauqua County and in the Red House Area of Allegany State Park in Allegany County. The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation a…

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Summer is a great time for movie fans. Not only do we get to watch all the big popcorn movies the season brings, but we can also go outside to see movies under the stars. In addition to movies at area drive-ins, there are at least nine area outdoor movie series announced this summer with more to come. Do you like your movies on the beach? At a park? Conveniently outside…

Buffalo

On a firecracker-hot Fourth of July, Gretel Fitch of Perry and her family waited at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park for their — tall — ships to come in. A Coast Guard vessel led the Spirit of Buffalo, the first ship in the flotilla, past the Buffalo Lighthouse and into the Inner Harbor shortly before 4:30 p.m., and loud cheers went up as ship horns…

Family

American pop star Katy Perry invented fireworks in 2010. Just kidding. (That was the song, "Firework," for anyone who didn't listen to the radio during the summer of 2010.) Fireworks have actually been around since sometime between 600 and 900 A.D., the History Channel estimates, when Chinese alchemists mixed a few of the right chemicals together, stuffed them into bamb…

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Regal Cinema's Summer Movie Express is pulling into the Walden Galleria with family friendly movies at 10 a.m. Tuesday and Wednesdays through August. Tickets just $1, plus a portion of the proceeds go to the Will Rogers Institute which promotes medical research pertaining to cardiopulmonary diseases. Here's the movie schedule: July 2 and 3: "Despicable Me 3" and "Dr.…

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Virginia’s Chesapeake Bay seems like an odd place to hatch a plan for heightened appreciation of Buffalo’s maritime history. Not for Mike Vogel and Paula Blanchard, the chair and co-chair of the forthcoming "Basil Port of Call: Buffalo," a four-day family event that will bring the most dramatic tall ship fleet to the city’s waterfront since the Erie Canal’s 1800s heyday…

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#Picnic has 6,265,314 posts on Instagram. The outdoor arrangement of blankets, baskets and food has been popular for centuries. The Atlantic wrote that picnics arose during the period of romanticism immediately following the Industrial Revolution. Apparently, picnics used to be more popular back then, although six million Instagram photos might beg to differ. Around …

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Music making seems to be a family affair around these parts. In recent weeks, it has occurred to me that we’re now seeing a whole slew of second-generation musicians making their mark, both locally and out in the world. Longtime musician, educator and producer Mark Hunt’s son, Elliott, is making some serious waves with his indie-pop band Mom Said No, most recently with …

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The Strawberry Moon Festival starts at 3 p.m. June 22 at Artpark. It is free between 3 and 5 p.m. All-day access tickets are $28, and cover all activities between 3 and 11 p.m., including the mainstage concert performances. Children ages 12 and younger will be admitted free. Re-entry will be allowed until 5 p.m. Carry-in chairs will be allowed in designated areas. Ticke…

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Theater lovers rejoice. Ten plays are opening this week – all on one stage at the Alleyway Cabaret. Buffalo United Artists' annual short play production "BUA Takes 10" has a special theme this year marking the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots in Greenwich Village. Works by a dozen nationally known playwrights – including two from Buffalo – tell the "before, during a…

Art

Sixty-two years ago, a group of Allentown business owners started an outdoor art festival. In the ensuing decades, the Allentown Art Festival has connected locals and tourists on the streets of Allen, Delaware, Virginia and Franklin, to shop booths of arts and crafts, eat fried dough and drink frozen lemonade, finding rare shade under the blanket that is Delaware Avenue…

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It may be almost summertime, but no one knows more than Buffalonians that weather doesn’t always follow the rules. If rain and clouds are in the forecast and you’re going stir-crazy at home, check out these spots around town to still have a fun summer day — all for $13 or less. Buffalo Museum of Science. Is the last time you visited the science museum a field trip with …

Art

Welcome to our weekly grab bag guide of things to do and places to go in and around Buffalo this weekend. Friday Pizza, craft beer and skeeball A lot of change happens slowly, but some change happens all at once, especially when $50 million is involved. Black Rock's Chandler Street is metamorphosing from an area of abandoned warehouses, siphoned off by residential str…