27 Things You Need To Know About Buffalo Before You Move ThereOK, you already know about the snow. But did you also know that Buffalo is a hotbed for good food, amazing architecture, and one-of-a-kind festivals? I didn't think so.
1. Buffalo Chicken Wings Were Invented Here
Source: Flickr user JasonParis
There's a reason why every other restaurant outside of the Western New York area calls chicken wings, "Buffalo" wings. They were invented here and the Anchor Bar in downtown Buffalo is where all the magic happened. In 1964, Teressa Bellissimo fixed a late night snack for her son and his friends using a secret sauce and a deep fryer. The rest, as they say, is history.
2. Three Words: Polar Bear Cubs
Source: Buffalo Zoo
Believe it or not, the Buffalo Zoological Gardens is the third oldest in the United States. Established in 1875, the Zoo was originally planned to be part of Frederick Law Olmsted's famous Delaware Park. Now, the Zoo is home to a variety of animal species, including two polar bear cubs named Luna and Kali. Aww.
3. Buffalo Bills Fans Are No Joke
Source: Buffalo Bills via Facebook
Buffalo Bills fans have been through it all-the Wide Right incident, The Music City Miracle, a 15-year playoff drought, a four straight Super Bowls without a win. Still, whether it's 5 degrees and there's a whiteout blizzard over the stadium, the seats are packed. Talk about commitment.
4. It Was Frank Lloyd Wright's Muse
Source: Flickr user Lori L. Stalteri
Considered America's greatest architect, Frank Lloyd Wright used Buffalo as a blank canvas to design six homes and one modern office building on his way to notoriety. Though the Larkin Company Administration Building is no longer standing, you can still tour the six homes that Wright famously designed.
5. No Pain, No Grain
Source: Silo City Rocks via Flickr
What do you do with a 100-year-old grain elevator on the Buffalo River that's no longer in service? According to Silo City Rocks, you turn it into a rock wall. We're talking revitalization at its best! The only question is-can you make all the way to the top?
6. Buffalo Really Knows How To Celebrate Winter
Source: Deviantart user darkviper039
Sledding on the overpass? Maneuvering through a giant ice maze? Is it a snow Armageddon? No, it's the Buffalo's Powder Keg Festival. As the pithy slogan goes, "We don't fear winter. We revel in it."
7. Our City Smells Like Cheerios
Source: Flickr user Chad Miller
If you live or work within five miles of the General Mills cereal plant, you'll smell the sweet scent of Cheerios all day long. It's especially yummy on a cold, winter day.
8. Ted's Hotdogs Will Rock Your Tastebuds' World
Source: Ted's Hotdogs via Facebook
You might be thinking, what's so special about a hotdog? I dare you to eat a Ted's foot long, wash it down with a tall glass of Loganberry and a side of fries, and then answer that question yourself.
9. Catch Some Culture At Canalside
Source: Canalside via Facebook
What do you get when you combine 21 historic waterfront acres, innovative ideas, creative development, and over 750 concerts events annually? Canalside, of course! Located right in the heart of Buffalo's waterfront district, this new Buffalo gem attracts approximately 750,000 visitors throughout the year.
10. It Hosts The Best St. Patrick's Day Parade, Ever
Source: Flickr user Sean-Franc Strang
Known for its large Irish population, Buffalo's St. Patrick's Day Parade is considered one of the best in the country. Thousands of people pack the streets to join in the festivities. Don't worry, you don't have to be Irish to take part, just be ready to party like the Irish do.
11. The City Breeds Musical Talent
Source: Flickr user Leo Hoffman
What do Ani DiFranco, Brian McKnight, Rick James and the Goo Goo Dolls all have in common? You guessed it-they were born and raised in Buffalo.
12. We All Toast To Five Points Bakery
Source: Five Points Bakery via Facebook
If you ever thought that opening up a toast café was stupid idea, think again. Five Points Bakery has perfected the art of toast and jam, sourcing their whole grain ingredients from local farmers and producers who share the same vision of seasonal, organic foods. Their cinnamon buns are worth the trip alone.
13. Two Words: Sponge Candy
Source: Flickr user Marc Majcher
What's better than a puffy square of caramelized sugar coated in milk chocolate? Nothing.
14. It Has A Natural Wonder In Its Backyard
Source: Flickr user Anupam_ts
Not only is Niagara Falls one of the Seven Wonders of the World, it's only a hop, skip and a jump from downtown Buffalo. How cool is that?
15. Get Ready To Eat The Heck Out Of Beef On Weck
Source: Wikimedia user Nickgray
Beef on Weck is a mouth-watering sandwich with fresh sliced roast beef piled high on a salty kummelweck bun and served with a side of au jus for dipping. Another culinary creation from Buffalo to you make your mouth water with envy.
16. Mother Nature Takes It (Relatively) Easy On Us
Source: Flickr user NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Want to duck Mother Nature's wrath, Buffalo is a great place to do it. Buffalo has been named the fourth safest city from natural disasters, and which would you rather brave-earthquakes, mudslides, hurricanes, tornadoes or the occasional blizzard every other winter? Snow melts, people. Think about it.
17. We Have Food Trucks Galore
Source: Flickr user Richard Sloan
Currently, there are 16 different delicious food trucks (and counting) trolling the Buffalo area looking for a place to park and feed some hungry folks. Whether it's ThaiMeUp or Fally Mac for everything mac & cheese-related, you're bound to find something to satisfy any intense craving.
18. Buffalo Keeps It Tidy
Source: Flickr user Jason Paris
Aside from being safe from natural disasters, Buffalo is also very clean. In fact, according to Reader's Digest's "The 50 Cleanest (and Dirtiest) Cities in America," Buffalo is ranked as the third cleanest! Not too shabby.
19. Buffalo Runs On Paula's Donuts
Source: Paula's Donuts via Facebook
Who needs Dunkin Donuts? Paula's Donuts has over 30 varieties of fresh baked donuts as well as pastries, muffins, bagels, breakfast sandwiches, carrot cake and more. Paula's is local and delicious, even if their billboards are kind of creepy.
20. We've Got A Serious Case Of Hockey Fever
Source: Flickr user Brian Turner
Warroad, Minn. may have been the first-ever "Hockey Town, USA." But Buffalo is a close second. Hockey fans young and old follow the Buffalo Sabres all year long, and amateur outdoor hockey leagues and tournaments are abundant once the cold weather hits.
21. Millard Fillmore Grew Up Here
Source: Flickr user Doug Kerr
You know him as the 13th president of the United States. We know him as one of the first Buffalonians to brag about his city, which is why we have streets named after him. He co-founded the University at Buffalo, the Buffalo Historical Society and Buffalo General Hospital. Tourists can still visit the house he grew up in, located just outside the city in East Aurora.
22. It's The Home Of The National Wing Festival
Source: Flickr user LegendLarrys
Did you know that our chicken wings have a national festival named after them? Competitive eaters from all over the world come here to celebrate the Buffalo wings and compete in an all-out wing-eating contest. While you're here, you can also sample different wing sauces and taste some of the best chicken wings in the world.
23. Buffalo Wears Many Hats
Source: Flickr user Sean-Franc Strang
New Era Cap Company basically creates the hats that all the pro teams wear, and all the fans want to buy. That makes Buffalo cool by association. We're talking NBA, MLB, NFL, NHL and more. If you're wearing a pro team hat right now, chances are it's from New Era.
24. Buffalonians Are Super Crafty
Source: Allentown Village Society, Inc. via Facebook
The Allentown Art Festival originated in 1958, beginning with a small group of about 50 artists selling their wares on the street corner of Allentown. It has since grown to become one of the most highly anticipated cultural festivals of the year. With over 400 juried exhibitors on display, you're going to walk away with something crafty (whether you need it or not).
25. Buffalo Is Foodie Heaven
Source: Taste of Buffalo presented by TOPS
There are so many good restaurants in the Buffalo area that you can't possibly try them all at once-unless you're at the Taste of Buffalo. Considered the largest two-day food festival in the entire country, the Taste offers over 200 culinary specialties from local restaurants, bars, cafes, and bistros. Bring your wallet, your appetite and a few friends for a face-stuffing good time.
26. We Have Plenty Of Sweet Digs
Source: Flickr user Reading Tom
In the early 20th century, Buffalo was one of the richest cities on the East Coast. The streets were full of towering mansions. First built in 1863, the Mansion on Delaware Avenue now serves as a swanky modern-day hotel, complete with limousine service for a night out on the town. Who said Buffalo doesn't have some Beverly Hills Hotel swag?
27. It's An Artsy Kind of City
Source: Albright-Knox Art Gallery via Facebook
Buffalo is home to the Albright-Knox, a world-renowned art gallery and one of the oldest public arts institutions in the United States. It's home to some of the most famous pieces of modern and contemporary art in all of history. From public tours and open art classes to unforgettable events, the Albright-Knox helps keep art alive and well throughout the entire city.