Spring Has Sprung in Buffalo!

 

Don't forget Delaware Park has a nine hole golf course!

Don’t forget Delaware Park has a nine hole golf course!

At the time I am writing this, it is 73 degrees outside. 73! In April! In Buffalo! Spring has finally sprung, and it literally has not come soon enough. As the last remaining dingy piles of snow finally become runoff, Buffalo may still be reeling from this very long and sometimes dangerous winter we’ve just suffered through. It was a disappointing end to the Bills season, and we all know how everything’s gone down with the Sabres. Spring is here to bring a sense of renewal – we’re reborn, Buffalo! The Bills are perhaps the most talked about team in the NFL and the Sabres are going to pull either Jack Eichel, or (knock on wood) CONNOR McDAVID! Our sports teams are refreshed, our streets are clear, and so, as we emerge from our dimly lit hibernation into the bright spring sun, we may be too disoriented to come up with things to do. FEAR NOT, BUFFALO! May I suggest one – or all! – of the following:

 

Times Beach on the left and Tifft Nature Preserve offer plenty of family fun, mostly for free!

Times Beach on the left and Tifft Nature Preserve offer plenty of family fun, mostly for free!

Hike: We are very, very lucky to have some really amazing wooded areas in our region – and some within city limits! A quick drive over the skyway brings you to two of them; Tifft Nature Preserve and Times Beach Nature Preserve. Both offer very easy hiking trails that are great for families of all ages. Wildlife abounds, and the hills of Tifft offer amazing views of the sealine and skyline of the city. Of course, nearly every WNY township boasts its own parks, and each has a unique combination of beauty and history. Take an hour or two a week to visit a new park. These quiet moments on a path, when a fawn peers out from a rustling bush, are some of the best moments a family can have.

Cleaning up this city, one group at a time.  Photo from wnyprogress.com

Cleaning up this city, one group at a time. Photo from wnyprogress.com

Volunteer: As the snow melts, six months of buried garbage, fallen branches, and damp, rotting leaves begin to expose themselves, blanketing what would be a lush, green landscape. Dozens of groups gather throughout the spring to spend some time cleaning up our local streets, parks, and waterways, and each is easy to find, thanks to the internet! You could even start your own group – gather some friends and family and head down to your favorite place. It’s a great way to teach kids the importance of conservation, and how hard work can be fun and rewarding, especially if rewarded with a great meal afterward.

Plant something: Plant a flower, a tree, an herb – anything! My family has three gardens at our South Buffalo home – one flower garden in front of the house and two spaces for veggies next to our driveway and in the adjacent lot. The kids love getting down and dirty with the garden claw, moving worms out of harm’s way, and watching as teeny seeds become flourishing plants. The added benefit of growing foods we’ll serve at meals is obviously awesome, but some of the best times we spend together are preparing the gardens and planting flowers and seeds. It doesn’t take much to work the moist soil now, and there is a good chance that you’ll be able to grow all sorts of lettuce, spinach, peppers, tomatoes, beans, and squash without really having to worry about fertilizing. Give it a shot! Gardening is cheap, simple, and very, very rewarding.

Flowers

With flowers blooming, Buffalo knows that it’s Spring! Finally!!!!!!

 

The preceding suggestions are obviously weather-based. We all know that Buffalo springs can bring long periods of gray, rainy days. Thankfully, we’re surrounded by some amazing all-weather venues for fun.

Take a brewery tour: While you were hibernating, Buffalo has added a few more breweries to their roster. Those that had previously opened, as well as these 2015 rookies, are ready for the masses who are taking to the streets to shed the winter blues. What better way than to learn how your favorite brew is made, and then cap it off with a pint or two? Most local breweries have tours; check their individual websites for more times and cost.

resurgence

Hit up Resurgence for their Cornhole Tournament!

Check out the Botanical Gardens: This beautiful park, located on South Park Avenue near the famous Our Lady of Victory Basilica, is a breathtaking mix of architecture and nature. The beautiful building houses plants from all over the world, of every kind imaginable. It is easy to get lost in the rooms of tropical arrangements and imagine you’re enjoying a comfortable, warm day – despite dismal rain occurring on the outside. Should you happen down to the park on a sunny day, the nearly two-mile loop offers space for biking, skating, and running, and surrounding fields have plenty of space for sports or picnics; not to mention the golf course and practice range located on the grounds.

Local bands like the Blue Ribbon Bastards have been waiting for you all winter.  https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Blue-Ribbon-Bastards/262044466456

Local bands like the Blue Ribbon Bastards have been waiting for you all winter. https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Blue-Ribbon-Bastards/262044466456

Local and live: Outdoor music will soon be flooding our calendars, and it will be a great season for sure. In order to best prepare, I highly suggest getting out to some of the great local venues we have to check out some of the most talented bands in the country. Buffalo boasts some really great cover bands, for sure, but the quality of the original bands that call Buffalo home is severely underrated. Soon enough, these acts will be opening for your nationals, so it’s best you familiarize yourself with their catalogues now. When you’re up front at Canalside and singing along to all of their songs, you’ll be the envy of everyone around. You can thank me for this hip tip on Twitter: @SchlagsWrites, and on Facebook here.

Of course, this is just a quick list to get your creative juices flowing. If you, your organization, or anyone you know, is hosting an event, please let us know and we’ll do our best to promote it on our events page. Enjoy the weather, Buffalo! We’ve definitely earned it – especially after the winter we’ve had.

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