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The Buffalo Banana Gang

This past Saturday, while attending the Buffalo Roars for Tusks and Horns event, I met a young woman by the name of Idoia Castellanos Rubio. Idoia moved to Buffalo a couple years ago for work, and has since been involved in starting a “revolution” in this city. Seeing that Idoia is a hard working scientist, it only makes sense that on her off hours she dedicates herself to the pursuit of being outwardly fun-loving and social. No matter what sort of mood you might be in, spending a couple of minutes with Idoia will have you laughing, dancing, and maybe even wearing a banana suit.

A couple of weeks ago, Idoia’s friend Corey Dodge decided that it would be fun to start a new social group in Buffalo. Corey had come to be in possession of a number of banana suits, and felt that he could put them to good use. It was then that the Buffalo Banana Gang was formed. It didn’t take much for Corey to persuade Idoia to join the gang (the revolution). “It started when we were helping some friends to move to their new house,” said Idoia. “Corey works gathering stuff in different places and selling them in eBay. He always has funny things in his place. He has a gift – he always gets people have fun.


I laughed so so much, all of us laughed… the move became a party! We realized that life can be awesome just being a banana! And I supported the idea so hard. We started to make plans and dream about the future banana adventures. And when Corey asked me last week if I wanted to go to the Sabres game, I said: Yesss, but only if we go in bananas!”

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In a very short period of time, the Buffalo Banana Gang has reached a sort of cult status. Wherever they go, people want to take photos with them. According to Idoia, the gang is even contemplating what they are going to wear for Halloween… on top of their banana suits. “I’m thinking about going as a Freddy Krueger banana,” said Idoia [laughing]. “We’re having a lot of fun with this – the banana suits make people happy. We’re looking for new adventures, and we even made it on TV recently (at the Sabres game). People say they see us – how can you miss us!”


The next time that you’re feeling down about life…


… just stop to think about these thick skinned yellow characters traipsing about the city. They certainly bring a smile to my face – I love the way that this was a spur of the moment inspiration that developed into a movement, or “revolution” as Idoia would say.

Keep your eyes peeled for more Buffalo Banana Gang adventures. The group is made up of a bunch of movers, shakers and merrymakers.

“I love peace and fun,” said Idoia. “And this is a beautiful tiny contribution to a better world. The revolution has not to be about huge things, it can be just about small things that bring happiness and a good energy that is contagious and spreads. At this point we are close to having ten bananas in the group, but we’re aiming for 30. Anyone is welcome to become a banana and join us for an adventure… bowling, biking, shopping… it all sounds like fun when you’re dressed as a banana.”


Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

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