Here’s a shout out to YourCare Health Plan and the American Heart Association of Buffalo for putting together a super successful Healthy Heart Fair in The Square earlier today (11:30am – 1:30pm). I was biking down Main Street, heading to Public Espresso & Coffee (inside The Hotel @ The Lafayette) for a meeting, when I was suddenly sidetracked. For the first time since Thursday @ The Square (TATS), I heard hopping music emanating from Lafayette Square… and it was on a Thursday!
At first, I thought that someone had brought back The Square, despite Buffalo Place running the weekly Queen City Social every Thursday (after work). As I cycled up to The Square, I spotted DJ Unknown spinning on the Main Street side of the Soldiers & Sailors Monument. The scene was very reminiscent of TATS. It was great to see the square activated in this way – it’s been far too long since anyone did anything of this nature at this site.
Aside from the live DJ music, there were a number of interactive activities taking place on the lawn of The Square, including:
- Square-wide Jump-A-Thon
- Exercises and healthy heart information
- Blood pressure screenings
- Giveaways and Raffles
- Free healthy snacks and beverages
- Free hands-only CPR trainings
The following organizations and vendors set up tables:
Monroe Plan for Medical Care, BestSelf Behavioral Health, Parent Network of WNY, Buffalo Prenatal Perinatal Network, WNY Independent Living Inc. (WNYIL), Buffalo & Erie County Public Library – Central Library, Native American Community Services of Erie and Niagara Counties Inc., The Center for Hospice & Palliative Care, representatives of YourCare’s Baby & Me – Tobacco Free Program.
As I looked around, I noticed that YourCare had an office directly across the way on Main Street. Now, here’s an example of a local organization, with an office in Downtown Buffalo, contributing to the revitalization of Buffalo in a very special way. YourCare, along with the American Heart Association, did a wonderful job of activating the space, by simply utilizing the bones of the historic Square. These types of events should be taking place at Lafayette Square, and Niagara Square, throughout the course of the summer. Buffalo’s town squares were meant to be social gathering places, where people can enjoy a wide variety of entertainment, events, and activities.
Today’s entertainment went hand-in-hand with the Downtown Farmer’s Market (Main Street) and the Food Truck Thursdays in Niagara Square. Thursday has turned out to be quite the happening day of the week thanks to everyone that continues to organize these community-driven undertakings. Hopefully more downtown companies and organizations will jump onboard with this type of feel good programming, resulting in reinvigorating downtown Buffalo each and every day of the week.
I know that the Healthy Heart Fair in The Square was a one off, but it would be nice to see this turned into a monthly event series throughout the summer.
Oh, and by the way… the apple was delicious – an unexpected treat!