Urban Environment in Buffalo, NY (Lens-Artist’s Photo Challenge, 10Sept2022)

Sofia Leads the Lens-Artist challenge this week and invites us to share Urban Environments. There were so many directions I could have taken – and I easily decided to share some photos from Buffalo, New York from November 2020.

1) The first image is my favorite one for showing an “urban environment” with an older city flair. The awnings, diverse windows, entrances and store fronts, people, streetlight, two satellite dishes, a parked bike, a bit of color, and the typical city tree.

Here is a brief history of Buffalo, New York from BYGONELY:

“Buffalo is the second-biggest city in New York State with so many architectural treasures, including historic buildings, churches, and mansions. The Buffalo area was inhabited before the 17th century by the Native American Iroquois tribe. Buffalo grew significantly in the 19th and 20th centuries as a result of the Erie Canal, railroads, and Lake Erie. Automobile, steel, Iron, and meat-packing plants were the primary industries during the 20th century. Buffalo was greatly affected by the great depression, and unemployment increased rapidly. The population of Buffalo was over a half-million at its peak and declined by up to 50% as the industries began to shut down, and people left the Rust Belt for the employment opportunities of the South and West.

Erie County has lost population in every census year since 1970.”

Go HERE to read more at BYGONELY and also to see historic photos of Buffalo, NY

We were coming back from University at Buffalo (enjoyed some of their art)

2) Mosaic Tree Art – University at Buffalo (2020)
  • On the way back from UB, we drove down part of Elmwood Avenue. It has an arts district and a lot of older neighborhoods. 

  • As a passenger in the backseat, I had a chance to take photos. Some of the images are not the best quality – so it is about the content 📷

  • Some of the rundown buildings reminded me that Buffalo has a long history.

3) This “Double Six Barber Shop” stood out because.I wondered what was there 80 years ago?

Some cities have corner liquor stores and establishments that “never close”

4) This photo gives us the city vibe with people on the corner, protected windows, street signs, residences to the back – and a mailbox (which I doubt we will continue to see in years to come. I think the post office will make changes that are less convenient and more cost effective).
5) Here is a better view of the “we never close” sign – with a few other city tidbits and pandemic reminders.

While in Buffalo, it was fun to see a painting of New York City in a storefront window.  When I moved to Long Beach, CA for a year in the late 1980s, a lot of folks there assumed I was from NYC. Even when I reminded them that Buffalo was a city almost 300 miles away from NYC – and that my town was in Western New York – they often still asked me about NYC.

6)My mom and I liked this painting of NYC. Did you know that I live closer to NYC here in Richmond, Virginia compared to when I lived in Buffalo, NY? Yes, I can make it to New York City in about five hours from Richmond – whereas from Buffalo it would take closer to seven hours. 

Even though Buffalo likely got the city name from the beautiful creek/river surrounding it – the North American Bison is an icon for this city.

7) My spouse being silly.
8) I guess you also know you are in a city environment when there are enormous Christmas displays. And… did you know there are only 105 days until Christmas 2022? (Counter is HERE). — Wow – where is the year going? —

CLOSING

Have you visited the Buffalo, New York area?

If you do visit Buffalo, NY –  be sure to check out Niagara Falls and enjoy some chicken wings (both are obvious suggestions)- and you also might want to try a “Beef on Weck”-which is a large roast beef sandwich on a Kummelweck roll. And if you find the right store, you can even buy some snow to go.

9) Classic Buffalo Souvenirs. Snow to Go, a package with “Buffalo Wing hot sauce” and “Kummelweck salt” (for making your own roll for a beef on weck sandwich). They also had glasses from Shea’s Theatre Buffalo, which is where I saw plays, musicals, and bands like BOC and George Thorogood in the 1980s. 

Thanks to Sofia for this week’s challenge – go here to join in and see her master post. And click here for more information about the Len’s Artist Challenge. 

 
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133 thoughts on “Urban Environment in Buffalo, NY (Lens-Artist’s Photo Challenge, 10Sept2022)

    1. Thanks Alison – I almost shared a few photos of downtown (but the post would have been too long) and the downtown buildings have some that are Art Deco (city hall) and just beautiful
      Thanks for checking this post

      Like

    1. Hi Kelvin
      Being from a buffalo had been a very unique part of my identity’s and in every place I have lived – I usually run into a handful of people “from” buffalo and they are usually very cool
      Thanks for checking out this post

      Like

        1. Not sure if you know the “shuffle off to buffalo” reference 🎵🎵

          “Shuffle Off to Buffalo” is a song written by Al Dubin and Harry Warren and introduced in the 1933 musical film 42nd Street, in which Ruby Keeler and Clarence Nordstrom sang and danced to it. Ginger Rogers, Una Merkel, and the Chorus[1] also performed it in the film. (Wiki)

          Like

        2. Oh not ruined at all!
          I actually thought you might have known – but only shared it because sometimes these posts will be around for a while and then with your comment I was curious as to when the song first came out – I was surprised it was the 1930s….

          Like

    1. You are spot on that the tree art has a sinister vibe
      The mood changes at night when the spotlights are on – the colors radiate and the mosaic sparkles – but I didn’t get any night shots

      Like

    1. Hi Sofia – thanks for your comment – and I was actually exploring elmwood avenue as well / it was not the area I lived in- and so the drive that day showed me other parts of the city
      And side note – there are so many cities in the states that look like this city

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Derrick a thanks for taking the time to read the little extras – and it still amazes me that living in the same state took longer – but living a few states away is quicker (and a more enjoyable drive because we go right down I-95 and it is smooth!!)

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Thanks for introducing me to Buffalo. Looks like an interesting place, though I always feel sad when I see derelict buildings and wonder what happened to their former residents. The painting of NYC on a window was interesting, and it was fun to see your spouse being silly for the camera.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Norah – I feel a little bad not adding some photos showing buffalo’s beauty because they have some great areas with some “talking proud” highlights – like museums, schools, and festivals.
      And I had a few more silly husband photos but held back because I wanted to tone down the laughter a bit (just kidding)
      Thanks for the visit

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s okay, Yvette. I understand there is beauty to the city too. We have derelict buildings and areas in our city as well. It always saddens me, as I say, and makes me wonder why.

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        1. Hi Norah -these photos were taken nine months into the pandemic and I wonder if that is why the double six barber shop was boarded up
          Because sadly – hair cutters and salons were shut down but fast food eateries and Walmart were constantly opened???
          Anyhow – thanks for your comment

          Liked by 1 person

        2. I can’t be sure, but I think hairdressers stayed open here, for a while anyway, considered essential. I thought that was a bit strange.

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        3. Well let me tell what was messed and strange in New York State – hair salons in malls were kept shut down through a logic 2020- however – if the salon was not in a mall and in stand alone building or if had a street entrance
          Those salons could open ?
          What?
          -/
          There was so much nonsense and not sure if you know it was mainly in certain states – like NY and CA were the top two worse – and perhaps TX and FL were the most sensible / in my opinion but also in many others –
          Anyhow – I hope many good lessons were learned to “we don’t repeat mistakes”

          Liked by 1 person

        4. I think there were many inconsistencies here, too. But we were working with the unknown. I’m pleased I didn’t have to make decisions. Hopefully good lessons have been learned.

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  2. I’ve only been through Buffalo not in it. Your photos are interesting, I especially like the Double Six Barber Shop. It’s a pic envisioning how I believe rundown buildings in urban centers look– even if they all don’t look like this.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ally / thanks for checking out this post and that is how Chicago is for me – been through and around it many times but never had the chance to visit and explore😊☀️

      And the double six barber shoo does have a universal vibe and for some reason that photo reminds me of a Baltimore shop

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I haven’t been there since I was a child (when I lived in Cleveland), even though I had relatives living there for many years. So my memories are of my cousins, and Niagra Falls. But the city looks much like many Midwestern cities I’m more familiar with. (K)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi K – yes – I think buffalo reminds me of midwestern citues too!
      And from Ohio ? I feel like that is a sister state for where I grew up (rust belt and history connections)
      And have you heard the Ohio song from Bowling for Soup?

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Fun post Yvette – when I think of Buffalo I think COLD! Not my favorite thing, hence our move to the south. I was born in Rome NY but moved when I was only 3 so I don’t remember it but have visited Niagra Falls and have been back up there a few times. Always happy to return home to sun and warmth!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Tina – I think of the cold too! Brrrrr – and the lake effect cold of buffalo is brutal!
      The funny thing is that when I moved away in 1990 it was for a short break to help someone – and that led to my exit – but I never meant to go
      And now of course I hope to never ever live anywhere with such cold winters!

      Like

  5. I thoroughly enjoyed this tour, Yvette. I only knew about buffalo wings and Niagara Falls before, both of which I hope to experience one day, but I am now also fascinated by the old city flair. Just my favorite kind of urban environment. Props to We Never Close for their wit. Obvious name aside, I like that they literally spread out the “s p r e a d o u t” sign to remind the customers.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hi –
      I didn’t realize the “spread out sign” was spaced like that – hahah – thanks for pointing it out
      And When you do make it there – buffalo has some Art Deco buildings in downtown that are beautiful
      ☀️😊

      Like

      1. I can’t reply directly to your most recent comment, so I’m doing it here. Also I’m still in the very busy period and I want to apologize for getting back late again! Thank you very much for your kind offer. I’d love to have lunch with you if I can go to America again and visit nearby!

        Like

  6. Thanks for the great tour of Buffalo 🦬 NY Yvette!!
    We only end up in Manhattan and Jersey since we visit my daughter there and I. Not much of a city girl. Thanks for the great pics and taking us on that journey!💕

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Growing up on the shore of Lake Erie, it was sad to see the Great Lakes turn into the Rust Belt. I’ve driven through Buffalo hundreds of times, and have visited different suburbs, but I don’t think I have spent any time downtown. Of course, through school we always had Buffalo Wind Wings and Weck (BW3), but most people had no idea what “weck” was. I enjoyed the pictures 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow Trent / most people don’t know that the third W for BW3 stands for the Weck sandwich and so right on for you!
      Also how cool that you have passed through buffalo so many times
      I guess a few years ago – the downtown buffalo area offered free Wi-Fi for all businesses within a certain area – it was to try and boost business and it didn’t work very much –
      And during my 2019 visit I went out of my way to go to a small
      Bar with kitchen to get a beef in weck – it was ginormous and had au jus with perfect French fries! and I ended up giving half of it to a family friend (named Paul) – he died in 2020 and so I was extra glad I got that sandwich and then shared – it was like two pounds of beef! Haha mmmmmm

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think the BW3 at OSU was the only one outside of the Buffalo area when I was in school. Not sure if there are more now or not, but…
        With my family in the Cleveland area, going east usually means driving through Buffalo, at least if we need the NY Thruway. As a kid I went to a place in Canada that is just north of the Thousand Islands, so passed through on the way. And then driving between NH and OH, yep, same path.
        Sad, but glad you could have a good late memory of your friend. Next time I am that direction I will have to try a weck sandwich of some sort, maybe that same giant beef one…

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        1. I think we still have two or three BW3’s in our area – but have not been there
          for many years and we don’t like eating out that much because places are using such toxic oils
          (so many cook with industrial seed oils and as noted elsewhere – trying to
          avoid them as much as possible) also – that is not our kind of place anymore.
          And hearing about your locations – wow – I can see why you passed through the
          buffalo area so many times.
          And hope you get to have a beef on weck – the one I had was from a dive (right off the thruway) called Wheatchecks – but they might be closed down now….

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Sometimes the best regional food comes from dives… I doubt if I’d ever go back to a BW3 either -as a college student, it was fine, but never interested in it since then.

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    1. Hi Dan – good choice of word to say “suffered” because that is apt.
      Even tho there are many thriving areas in buffalo and a few years we were shocked at the real estate prices – for a place that loses people every year and has such brutal winters – you would think the houses would be more adoptable – well in some areas they are still a deal – but I was surprised at some home prices –
      Thanks for the visit

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Hi Dan, that would be one of my thoughts too. And I feel bad saying that.
          However, the western New York area does have a lot to offer with water, arts,
          nature, good eats, and old steel mills – ha

          and by the way – I am doing a mini interview with Shelley (quaint revival) and your book just come up!\
          It is actually a health post but of course Knuckleheads found its way in ….
          The post goes live tonight and I linked your blog = but just giving you a heads up….
          hope you have a great day
          and hope your friend has a wonderful retirement as he “shuffles off to Buffalo”

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Pittsburgh is a similar story, Yvette. Arts, music, good eats and old mills 🙂

          Thanks for the heads up. I’m curious as to how the book came in. I’ll be sure to check that out.

          Liked by 1 person

      1. Pittsburg is also so darn beautiful and I was reminded of that when I saw snippet of the Steelers game last Sunday!
        Such history ( and great setting for a fiction book – hahaha)

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        1. And after reading your wonderful NFL post …. I realized I could have mentioned the bills, showed the most humble and lackluster stadium in the league – it might be opposite if the SOFI stadium – lol – or I could have showed the $15 Buffalo Bills t-shirt I bought on that trip for the hubs- because it is sugar soft cotton and one his fav bills shirts ever (but he is a broncos fan first)

          Liked by 1 person

        2. I saw a Bills Mafia shirt the other day, so Bills Nation is circling the wagons for a legit Super Bowl run methinks. I respect any fan contingent that makes such intelligent use of the word Mafia. 😉

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        3. Hi M – I think it is funny that the bills fans have that nickname – but good for them – it can make things fun
          And if a team can have a “terrible towel” – let’s bring on the mafia –
          😉

          Liked by 1 person

        4. I know
          But as we have said before – too much hype can cripple
          And I see some humble pie coming
          But not wishing it on them
          And during the pregame we saw the school near the stadium let out half day (to free up traffic for the game) and seeing all those kids in Bills shirts reminded me that they sure could use a few years of having a good team
          So that is what I hope for –
          And it looks like they will have it
          And so I am looking forward to checking it after next week’s game
          -/
          Oh and this past weekend I noticed the female NFL announcers were classier and had less distracting clothes – that was great

          Liked by 1 person

        5. I think (Hope) this Bills team is so focused that they shut out the hype. Because when they are ON? No team better. It’s a long season and lots can and will happen, but I like their chances.

          And that whole letting the kids get out early is genius on SO many levels. They just made a ton of young fans.

          Maybe they listened? 🙂

          Like

  8. Lovely post! I do remember visiting Niagara Falls in New York with family when I was a child, but I don’t think I really “saw” Buffalo, New York. However, I’d definitely like to explore some more. Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi – thanks for the comment – and there are so many places to explore here in the states – I think the pandemic reminded so many of this when international travel was limited

      Like

  9. Nice examples of urban. I’ve gone to Niagara Falls a few times and always enjoyed it. Planning to return next month for a short visit. Might have to stop in Buffalo and sample one of those sandwiches…sounds good!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. 😊thanks for the comment and i how you have a wonderful visit there☀️

      I forgot to mention that the beef on weck is special because (if done right) the roll ha salt and a nice firmness but also soft -🥪
      If you do a search engine look for the best beef on weck in buffalo it will give you options.

      And here is what is fully on it:
      thin-sliced roast beef is piled onto a round roll topped with salt & caraway seeds (called a kummelweck) topped with horseradish – sometimes side of au jus

      Like

    1. Hi Jacqui- this might not be something you want to do – but I highly recommend taking route 5 and driving by the mikes of Bethlehem Steel plants – (I hope to do a photo shoot before they are gone)
      And I forgot to mention Tesla has a factory in buffalo NY too

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I have never “shuffled off to Buffalo” but got a nice look at this city from this post Yvette. I like the over-sized Santa and yes I, too, marvel at just how few days are left in the year from the counter. Speaking of over-sized, the “Beef on Weck” sounds delicious!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Linda – the beef on week was a delightful surprise and it was my last day in buffalo and I decided to not leave without having that sandwich and had to go out of my way to get it
      Then when it was gigantic – and I was able to share – even better

      Liked by 1 person

        1. So cool that you know about the Anchor Bar!
          And seeing I am feeling so chatty this week here on the ol’ blog – – May i expound a little bit?
          Anchor bar claims to have started the chicken wings but some debate it (like many origin stories) and it is really the buffalo sauce that is key – like Frank’s Red Hot
          – and anchor bar used to be good when they had a small place along Niagara street near the water. Fond memories of dining there – and 20+ years ago with the hubs and having so many plates of stuff where it barely fit on the table !

          🐓🍗Then they opened “Chain like ” locations in the buffalo area and service bad both times we went and everything below average (and our waitress was seen eating and chewing in the work station and that is a pet peeve)🥴

          So the best place for wings in buffalo – at least ore COVID- was Doc Sullivans and Duffs – or local small bars (of which there are many)

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Thanks for the scoop on the Anchor Bar Yvette. I have heard the story about it and I think it was on “Unwrapped” on the Food Network many years ago. I’m not much of a cook, but when I still had cable (before I cancelled in 2010), I liked seeing the origin of the foods they spotlighted. The best episode was showing how they create the staples in the American Thanksgiving meal, from the cranberries harvested from the bogs to the Durkee Fried Onion Rings. It was interesting.

          As for the Anchor Bar getting franchises – I hate what happens because it loses the personal touch and care of the original owner. They are supposed to maintain the standard franchise-wide, but don’t. I remember customers of mine at the diner owned a local Dairy Queen and told me, they had to buy DQ’s bananas – they couldn’t buy them from the grocery store or risk losing their franchise. At the diner, we were never allowed to snack on anything unless it was in the back kitchen, unless we were sitting eating our meal. I drive past the diner now and they prop the screen door open, inviting flies and street dirt and what not – my manager ran such a tight ship there as to cleanliness before retiring in 1978.

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        3. They were huge chicken wings unless it’s just been a while since I saw chicken wings. 🙂 This is a unique prompt that I’ve never seen before and if that is your hair in the “jaunty” pic, I like it very much.

          Liked by 1 person

  11. Some fantastic shots of Buffalo, Yvette. I live in Toronto, 1 1/2 hours away from the Buffalo border. Been there many, many times through the years. Of course, for shopping, lol. And I’ve seen both sides of the Falls. Great post! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi!
      I regret not going to Toronto more when I lived in buffalo – but I left at college age and so didn’t have too much time to explore –
      And the shopping reminds me of when I was getting my phone fixed at the mall –
      The guy working at the kiosk said he was annoyed by Canadians buying clothes and taking off the tags and making a mess near his store
      That was a while ago and he seemed crabby in general –
      In fact – there are nice people in buffalo – but the hubs and I were just talking about how out of the many different places we have visited – the buffalo area had some of the biggest “crabs” – but that can be related to timing and other factors
      Anyhow – thanks for sharing and I love your city of Toronto

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks Yvette. And I had to laugh at ‘taking the tags off’. That was a very long time ago, quite a few decades ago in fact. That was before Free Trade came in and Canadians were taxed and dutied to death for shopping cross border, lol. I should think people would have had some decency to use the garbage bin. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yes! I would think they would use the bin – and I have a feeling the guy was just a little crabby because maybe it was hard to feel fulfilled waiting to replace the next smart phone glasss
          – kidding because he could be very fulfilled with that
          Anyhow – glad their is duty free

          Liked by 1 person

    1. Well thanks for joining me with this post
      And your comment reminded me that another thug I like about blogging is the way we get to “virtually travel” with folks -And look forward seeing some of your travel shares

      Liked by 1 person

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