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BFLO Days Kicks Off with Arts Discussion

By Joyce Kryszak

Buffalo, NY – Buffalo's Unique Cultural Assets were the topic of a panel discussion Thursday night at the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society. Some of the areas leading cultural advocates joined in the kick-off event for the museum's Buffalo Days celebration this weekend.

This weekend, the museum will exhibit some of Buffalo's most unique companies and cultural treasures. From food and toys, to theatre and architecture -- Buffalo has it all.

Thursday night, some local arts leaders talked about ways to capitalize on those assets. It was a diverse group, representing many corners of the cultural community. Among them - Zoo Director Donna Fernandez, Studio Arena's Gavin Cameron Webb, and Michigan Street Preservationist George K. Arthur.

Linda Ray is Director of Development for the Historical Society, and coordinator of the events. Ray says working together is crucial if Buffalo is to make the most of what it's got.

"You talk to anyone in the cultural community, and we would probably all agree that we are undercapitalized," said Ray. "But we recognize that we are part of a larger picture and that tax dollars only go so far. So, I think that's part of the discussion as well. How do we maximize the public funding, while increasing our own 'entrepreneurialness', if you will, and work in the corporations, foundations and individual funding into the picture."

The panel discussion was the kick-off event for this weekend's second annual Buffalo Days Celebration. There will be activities from noon to four on Saturday and Sunday, including bike and walking tours, as well as displays of some of the hundreds of unique Buffalo products.