Author: BRo Guest Authors

BRo Guest Authors

It’s not unusual for authors to come and go. Guest authors range from collegiate interns to writers who will be contributing for a short stint of time. Guest authors might also have a series in mind. Authors are encouraged to submit their ideas to BRO (Buffalo Rising Online), upon which time we will work with the writer towards a productive end.

Author: Jeff Z. Klein (A version of this article appeared in the July 9, 2020, edition of Belt magazine, and in the anthology “Best of Belt 2020: Dispatches From the Rust Belt, Vol. III”) | See part I ‘THE MISERY AND THE CRIES OF DISTRESS’  On August 18, 1852, some 130 immigrant farmers from Norway lay sleeping among their baggage on the bustling wharf in Buffalo, waiting for the ship that would take them to new farmlands in Wisconsin.  Two months earlier 200 of them had crossed the ocean from Oslo to Quebec City. There they boarded vessels first for Montreal,…

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Author: Jeff Z. Klein (A version of this article appeared in the July 9, 2020, edition of Belt magazine, and in the anthology “Best of Belt 2020: Dispatches From the Rust Belt, Vol. III”) What does it mean when a city loses all memory of what it once was?  Once a bustling Great Lakes port famed for its ships and reviled for its dockside brothels and bars, Buffalo was the brawling crossroads of 19th-century America, a maritime city where the Erie Canal ended and the open water began, with a rich legacy of gales, songs, yarns, shipwrecks, and lives saved…

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Author: Scot Fisher The Skyway is in the news once again, and the question begs itself: why are we talking about this? The desire to demolish a perfectly functional, recently repaved bridge over the Buffalo River is misguided at best. At worst, it is an assault on the community. The big lie behind this project is the portrayal of the Skyway as an elevated superhighway that divides our city and walls us off from the water.  Simply put, it does not. To the contrary, the Skyway Bridge is a safe, functional, elegantly designed Mid-Century structure that allows easy access directly from…

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Author: Erik Brady You remember Totes. The city of Niagara Falls introduced him in 2015 as a sort of mascot for recycling. The terrifying man-goat ended up breaking the internet. Time magazine wrote about him. So did Cosmopolitan. We all had a good laugh. And then we sort of forgot about him. The internet, of course, never forgets. So it was that Sunday night, on HBO, Totes McGoats got his 15 minutes of fame all over again on “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver.” Or make that 30 minutes, roughly the length of “Last Week,” which blends comedy with advocacy…

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Author: Jonathan L. White for the Allentown Association newsletter The landmark Kleinhans Music Hall, located on Symphony Circle in Allentown has been home to the Buffalo Philharmonic and literally thousands of concerts in all musical genres for 80 years.  But Allentown has been home to the City of Buffalo’s primary music venues for over 120 years. Not long after the Civil War, the east side of Elmwood Avenue (then called Fremont Street) north of Virginia Street served as military grounds with a drill shed. In 1882 the Buffalo architect Milton Beebe designed a new armory for the 74th New York…

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Author: Lauren Wesp As the saying goes, “you can’t spend it twice.” And with high unemployment and severe economic insecurity resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, many of us are especially needing to cut down on expenses. Fortunately, in Buffalo it’s possible to get many things for free. I’ve furnished much of my apartment with furniture and décor that didn’t cost me a cent. I’ve also freed up space and shared my resources with others by giving away things that I no longer need. I am just one of many people who are participating in the local moneyless economy. Humans are…

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Author: Jeff Z. Klein Every year around this time, we get bombarded by ads, articles and talk touting “traditional Buffalo fish fry.” There’s only problem. They’re all wrong. All the fish frys you hear about nowadays involve haddock — an ocean fish, caught in the far-off North Atlantic. Haddock has nothing to do with a traditional Buffalo fish fry. Back in the day, fish frys here and throughout the Great Lakes region consisted of a freshwater fish, walleye — or yellow pike, as they’re called in Buffalo. (In Ontario they’re called pickerel.) That’s a traditional Buffalo fish fry: yellow pike.…

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Author: Erik Brady I am rooting for Tom Brady in the Super Bowl. There, I said it. Worse, I wrote it — for all the world to see. Look, I understand that such a sentiment will not be well received in these parts, where Brady is Public Enemy No. 1. Rooting for Brady in Buffalo is a sacrilege akin to ordering your wings with ranch. Jason Wolf offered reasons in The Buffalo News the other day on why rooting for Brady should be OK — and maybe even fun — for Bills Mafia this time around. What follows are my own highly…

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Author: Neil Farrell (see Part I) Can you tell me about the origins of Buffalo String Works? Well I got to know Elise Alaimo, a Buffalo Public Schools music teacher, and she invited me and our mutual friend Virginia Barron, who plays viola, to perform as guests in her music class at PS 45 International, in March 2014. When we got there I was struck by the diverse makeup of the school. I had no idea that Buffalo had such a large and thriving refugee and immigrant community. I think that Virginia and I expected to show up, talk about…

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Author: Neil Farrell I am a member of a group of amateur musicians called the South Buffalo Fresh Air Music Club. Somehow, we were lucky enough to be able to recruit the talented violinist/singer/songwriter, Blair Sailer to join our group. As we got to know Blair, we learned that besides her work as an elementary school teacher and member of the celebrated Bel Canto string quartet, Blair is also a Teaching Artist at Buffalo String Works (BSW). In short order, Blair enthusiastically invited us to one of the BSW concerts in which her students were performing and we were amazed…

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