Tonawanda News


August 1, 2013

KEPPELER: Sweet summer freedom

Tonawanda News — I stood at the second performance of In Good Company Productions’ “Back to the ‘80s” on Tuesday at Niawanda Park, watching as the 100 young cast members (yes, 100) took their bows at the end of the show to resounding applause and the sound of an ‘80s music medley. (I’m going to have “I Gonna Be (500 Miles)” and “Girls Just Want To Have Fun” stuck in my head for weeks.)

The couple sitting beside me clapped and cheered and whistled with particular vigor. It made me smile, actually, their enthusiasm, and when the accolades died down a bit, I asked if they were there for any of the young stars in particular.

The answer: Nope. They were from North Buffalo, saw an item in a newspaper and decided to come check out the show. And isn’t it neat how you can do something almost every evening during a Western New York summer for free?

I agree, but it wasn’t until later that I started thinking about it. And they’re right. Oh, there’s plenty you can pay for, from the inexpensive to the sell-your-car-for-ticket-money varieties, but if you look, there’s a lot out there that doesn’t require a cent. (Except, perhaps, for gas money.)

Here’s a few of my personal favorite free things to do during a Western New York summer. Bear in mind that they tilt heavily toward the kid-friendly and Tonawanda-centric because that’s sort of my life; your mileage may vary.

• The Kenmore Children’s Concert Series. There are a lot of free concerts around here, but these are a Keppeler staple. We’ve been to two of the five this year, including the Knewz and John & Mary & The Valkyries on successive weeks. The boys rarely sit down, dance happily for nearly an hour and go home worn out. What’s not to love?

Text Only
  • ADAMCZYK: The greatest luxury: peace, quiet It is not difficult, for anyone with the intent, to know more about you than you think they should. Every step of yours involving interactive technology can be molded into a picture of how you spend your time, money and thought.

    August 1, 2014

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On lines blurred, crossed and nonexistent It strikes me more and more how blurry the lines have gotten in all facets of our world, large and small.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tucker, Barbara.jpg TUCKER: Oh, the joys of Sound Off Never thought the words "Thank goodness for Sound Off" would ever be printed here.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • adamczyk, ed.jpg ADAMCZYK: And now for something completely different... Last weekend I attended a local movie theater (a plushy, posh experience; they design these places now to get you out of your living room and away from your home electronics) to watch the sun set on the British Empire.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • wallace, amy.jpg WALLACE: Too much information? Is there such a thing as TMI or too much information anymore? Some might say yes.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On reading and the lack thereof It was surprising to me a few weeks ago when a friend asked a group of us to estimate how many books we have each read over the last five years. The English teacher said 200 and he far and away led the pack. I was probably the median and my number was 20-25.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: A Con-Con would be a con game

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

    July 18, 2014

  • WALLACE: Festival season is underway Summer is the season of fairs and festivals. From Canal Fest in the Tonawandas to the Allentown Art Festival and Italian Heritage Festival in Buffalo to the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, the Western New York area has no shortage of things to do with the family over the summer.

    July 17, 2014