Explore Buffalo lists July tours and events

Explore Buffalo, a nonprofit organization providing tours and other unique opportunities where guests can discover the region’s great architecture, history and neighborhoods, has announced an extensive lineup of July events.

Explore Buffalo’s walking tours are back! All your favorites plus new tours added this summer. Advance reservations are encouraged but not required for tours. Walk-ups are welcome! For security reasons, all credit card payments must be made in advance. Advance reservations with a credit card can be made online until the tour starting time. Cash or checks are accepted at the start of the tour. If you make an advance reservation, please print your confirmation email or be prepared to show it on your phone.

Unless specified, most tours are between 90 minutes and two hours in length. Please wear comfortable walking shoes and dress for the weather! Reservations may be made online at explorebuffalo.org or by calling (716) 245-3032.

MASTERS OF AMERICAN ARCHITECTURE
July 1, 2, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30
Meet: Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington St., Buffalo, corner of Washington and Mohawk streets. Two-hour metered parking is available on surrounding streets, and the Mohawk Parking Ramp is on the opposite corner. The Lafayette Square Station of the Metro Rail is around the corner on Main Street.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

At the turn of the 20th century, Buffalo had grown to become the eighth largest city in America. The wealth generated by commerce and industry enabled the city’s businesses, organizations and citizens to hire some of the nation’s most prominent architects and use the finest materials available. On this downtown walking tour, see signature works by some of America’s greatest architects, including the Guaranty Building by Louis Sullivan & Dankmar Adler, the Ellicott Square Building by Daniel Burnham & Co. and St. Paul’s Cathedral by Richard Upjohn. Learn about the prominence of Buffalo on a national scale at the turn of the 20th century while visiting buildings such as the Old Post Office, St. Joseph’s Cathedral and Old County Hall.

SILO CITY GROUNDED
July 1, 15, 22, 29 @ 1 p.m.
July 3, 6, 7, 10, 13, 14, 17, 20, 21, 24, 27, 28, 31 @ 10 a.m.
July 9, 16, 23 @ 11 a.m.
July 11, 18, 25 @ 6 p.m.
Meet: Silo City, 120 Silo City Row, Buffalo. Turn from Ohio Street onto Silo City Row and enter Silo City through the gate. Ahead on your right will be a small brick office building where the tour will assemble. Ample parking is available on site.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

At ground level, experience the monumental scale of the grain elevators constructed in Buffalo in the first half of the 20th century, and also see how they are now being repurposed. On this guided walk around the grounds of Silo City, you will enter the ground floor work areas of a flour mill, two grain elevators and a malthouse. You will also see new projects including “Elevator B.”

SILO CITY VERTICAL
July 1, 9, 12, 15, 16, 19, 22, 23, 26, 29 @ 10 a.m.
July 6, 20, 27 @ 6 p.m.
Meet: Silo City, 120 Silo City Row, Buffalo. Turn from Ohio Street onto Silo City Row, and enter Silo City through the gate. Ahead on your right will be a small brick office building, where the tour will assemble. Ample parking is available on site.
Cost: General $40, Student $35, Explorer Pass $35

This tour is an experience unlike any other tour in the world! Silo City: Vertical will take you to the top of the American and Perot grain elevator complexes. Approximately 2.5 hours in length, you will experience all of the history and mechanics of the grain elevator, as well as the malt production process in the Perot malthouse on this in-depth tour. A look at some of the regenerative projects ongoing at Silo City is included.

Please note that Silo City: Vertical is not recommended for those with a fear of heights. Participants in this tour must be physically able to go up approximately 100 feet (10 stories) of stairs and a short interior ladder to reach the top — and then come back down! The elevators have been out of commission for years, so stairs are the only way to go. Reservations are required for this tour! Due to space limitations, we must limit this tour’s group size to a small number. The minimum age for this tour is 14 years old.  Please wear comfortable walking shoes; no sandals or open-toed shoes are permitted on this tour. The tour will proceed rain or shine.

TURN OF THE CENTURY TREASURES
July 1, 7, 14, 15, 21, 22, 28, 29 @ 9:30 a.m.
Meet: Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington St., Buffalo, corner of Washington and Mohawk streets. Two-hour parking is available on surrounding streets, and the Mohawk Parking Ramp is on the opposite corner. The Lafayette Square Station of the Metro Rail is around the corner on Main Street.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

This tour showcases Buffalo commercial architecture at the turn of the 20th century, when the city was the eighth largest in America and hosted the Pan-American Exposition. Many were designed by prominent local architectural firms, including Green & Wicks and Esenwein & Johnson, and exemplify the Beaux Arts architectural style popular at that time. Popular around the turn of the 20th century, Beaux-Arts, which translates as “Beautiful Arts” and began in Paris, is characterized by elaborate detail and ornamentation, with many classical influences. Many of the buildings on this tour have been meticulously restored in recent years to meet current needs, including the Electric Tower and Curtiss Hotel

BEST OF BUFFALO
July 1, 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, 14, 15, 19, 20, 21, 22, 26, 27, 28, 29 @ 1 p.m.
Meet: Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington Street, Buffalo, corner of Washington and Mohawk streets. Two-hour metered parking is available on surrounding streets, and the Mohawk Parking Ramp is on the opposite corner. The Lafayette Square Station of the Metro Rail is around the corner on Main Street.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Join Explore Buffalo for a downtown walking tour of the best of Buffalo architecture and history! The buildings included on this overview tour help to tell the story of Buffalo’s rapid rise to prominence, from the opening of the Erie Canal to the 1901 Pan-American Exposition. Buildings seen on this tour were designed by both nationally and locally significant architects, including Louis Sullivan, Richard Upjohn, Louise Bethune and EB Green. Perfect for both visitors and residents alike, this tour is an excellent introduction to Buffalo’s architectural heritage. This is an exterior-only tour; for building interiors, please see our in-depth downtown tours – American Masters, Turn of the Century Treasures, and Downtown Deco.

DELAWARE AVENUE MANSIONS
July 1, 8, 22 @ 10 a.m.
July 2, 9, 16, 23 @ 1 p.m.
July 5, 12, 19 @ 6 p.m.
Meet: Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site, 641 Delaware Ave., Buffalo. Parking is available in the TR Site’s parking lot accessible from Franklin Street or Delaware Avenue.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

The richest of the rich in Buffalo put their wealth on full display on this section of Delaware Avenue, home to the grandest collection of mansions built in the city. Marvel at these grandiose monuments to the Gilded Age and enjoy the intriguing stories of the families who built them – many were related – on this tour of Delaware Avenue from North Street to Bryant Street. This is an exterior-only tour (interiors are available once per month on the Inside Delaware Avenue Mansions tour).

DOWNTOWN MOB TOUR
July 1, 15, 22, 29 @ 7 p.m.
Meet: Spot Coffee at 227 Delaware Ave., at the corner of Chippewa Street. Metered street parking downtown is free on weekends on Delaware Avenue and other nearby streets, or private parking lots are available –  the closest is on Delaware Avenue, next to Spot Coffee. The nearest MetroRail station, Fountain Plaza, is three blocks away.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

A major part of Buffalo’s criminal history will be revealed on this tour! Throughout much of the 20th century, the Mafia played in important role in the Queen City, and Stefano Magaddino not only controlled mob activities in Western New York for 52 years but was also a national crime figure. No part of Western New York was untouched by his criminal organization. Join us on this walking tour of downtown Buffalo to learn about the impact the mob had on Buffalo, from daily life to major government building projects. Among the stories uncovered on this tour are the Buffalo Zoo warehouse, the Barrel Murder of 1903, and the hit at Caruso’s Restaurant. Walking among some of the downtown locations that mob members would have been familiar with as they plotted their next moves, you will understand the power the local mob once wielded.

ELEVATOR ALLEY KAYAK TOUR
July 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29, 30 @ 9 a.m.
July 5, 7, 12, 19, 21 @ 6 p.m.
Meet: Elevator Alley Kayak at The Barrel Factory, 65 Vandalia St., Buffalo, at the corner of Hamburg and Republic streets across from Gene McCarthy’s. The tour will launch from Mutual Riverfront Park, a one-block walk from The Barrel Factory.
Cost: General $40, Student $35, Explorer Pass Holder $35

The best way to appreciate Buffalo’s many grain elevators is from the water! From a kayaking perspective, the massive scale of the grain elevators and silos will be even more awe-inspiring. Join us for a kayak tour of the Buffalo River and its grain elevators in partnership with Elevator Alley Kayak, who will provide the kayaks for this urban adventure tour. Learn about the history of the grain elevators in Buffalo and have many terrific photo opportunities on this guided kayak tour!

HIDDEN GEMS OF THE DELAWARE DISTRICT
July 1, 8, 15, 22 @ 1 p.m.
July 11, 18, 25 @ 6 p.m.
Meet: Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site at 641 Delaware Ave., Buffalo. Parking is available in the TR Site’s parking lot accessible from Franklin Street or Delaware Avenue.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Take a walk around the block on Linwood Avenue, Bryant Street, Oakland Place and Summer Street to discover beautiful gardens and spectacular homes in a wide variety of architectural styles just off Delaware Avenue. Many of the families who built these homes are well-known in Buffalo history, such as the Goodyear family, while others are less well known but equally intriguing. Join us to learn their stories and discover the many hidden delights of this neighborhood!

LINCOLN PARKWAY
July 1, 9, 15, 22 @ 10 a.m.
July 6, 20 @ 5:30 p.m.
Meet: At the Abraham Lincoln in front of the Rose Garden in Delaware Park. Abundant free street parking on Lincoln Parkway is available.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Designed by Frederick Law Olmsted to be the principal approach to the jewel of his Buffalo park system, Delaware Park, Lincoln Parkway is one of the most beautiful streets in Buffalo. The homes along Lincoln Parkway, constructed in the early part of the 20th century by some of Buffalo’s wealthiest families, represent a wide variety of architectural styles. This tour will be a “walk in the park” as we explore the neighborhood and the stories of the families who have lived there!

UNIVERSITY DISTRICT
July 1, 31 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Behind the University Metro Rail Station, 3383 Main St. on the UB South Campus. Free parking is available in the adjacent Park-and-Ride lot.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

When the University at Buffalo purchased the Erie County Almshouse and Hospital on Main Street in 1909, it helped spur growth of nearby residences and businesses. The neighborhood that emerged boasts today’s University Park Historic District, which was the first “gated community” in Buffalo. There are several other landmarked sites in the neighborhood, as well as a commercial district along Main Street that reflects the adjacent college. This tour will highlight the University Metro Rail Station and the public art it contains, several historic buildings on the University campus, and the University Presbyterian Church. Moving into the adjacent neighborhood, the tour will view representative homes in the University Park Historic District, the Parkside Candy shop, and finish with recently completed wall murals.

RIVERFRONT RENAISSANCE
July 1, 2, 5,8, 9, 12, 15, 16, 19, 22, 23, 26, 29, 30 @ 10 a.m.
July 7, 14, 21, 28 @ 7 p.m.
Meet: Courtyard by Marriott Hotel at 125 Main St. (adjacent to the Erie Canal Harbor Metro Rail station). Street parking is available on some surrounding streets – street parking in downtown Buffalo is free on weekend. The closest paid private parking lot is AllPro Parking at 155 Washington St., Buffalo, directly behind the Courtyard by Marriott hotel.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Buffalo grew from the water’s edge as the Erie Canal and later the railroads brought unprecedented commerce and industry to the city. This waterfront walking tour will explore some of the oldest neighborhoods of Buffalo, many of which have gone through numerous transitions and are in the midst of yet another change as the city returns its focus to the water. The redevelopment of Canalside and new waterfront attractions are featured in this tour, along with the history of the opening of the Erie Canal and development of the grain elevator and other waterfront industry.

SCANDALOUS BUFFALO
July 2, 16, 30 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Spot Coffee at 227 Delaware Ave., at the corner of Chippewa Street. Two-hour metered parking is available on Delaware Avenue and other nearby streets, or private parking lots are available – the closest is on Delaware Avenue, next to Spot Coffee. The nearest MetroRail station, Fountain Plaza, is three blocks away. Street parking downtown is free on weekends.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Join us for a tour of the scandalous side of Buffalo history! On this downtown walking tour, you’ll learn some of the darker stories of the Queen City’s past. Stops included on the tour include the site of a triple hanging in 1825 and the former location of a Ku Klux Klan office. You’ll also find out what happened to the assassin who shot President William McKinley at Buffalo’s 1901 Pan-American Exposition. On this tour, you’ll learn about the role some of Buffalo’s lawmen played in maintaining civil order, including a popular anti-Prohibition Mayor and the Erie County Sheriff who became the only American President to have executed a prisoner by hanging. The architectural landmarks of downtown Buffalo provide a magnificent backdrop for these stories, many of which sound straight from a movie script – but they’re all true!

OLD FIRST WARD
July 2, 16 @ 1 p.m.
July 8, 22 @ 4 p.m.
July 14, 28 @ 6 p.m.
Meet: Mutual Riverfront Park at 41 Hamburg St., Buffalo. Street parking is available on Hamburg and South streets by the park – please do not use the parking lot for the Waterfront Memories & More Museum.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Join us for a walking tour of one of the oldest neighborhoods in Buffalo! The First Ward is the neighborhood adjacent to the Buffalo River, located in the shadows of the grain elevators that employed many of the neighborhood’s residents. On this tour, you will learn about how the growth and development of the neighborhood was closely tied to the rise of the grain trade at Buffalo’s harbor. A neighborhood with a proudly Irish heritage, the First Ward has been the birthplace and home to some of Buffalo’s most famous citizens, including Michael Shea, Jimmy Slattery and Fingy Connors. Come on this tour to learn their stories and many more! The tour will end at Gene McCarthy’s Tavern and Old First Ward Brewing, the perfect place to enjoy a pint after the tour.

PRESIDENTS IN BUFFALO
July 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington St., Buffalo, corner of Washington and Mohawk streets. Two-hour metered parking is available on surrounding streets, and the Mohawk Parking Ramp is on the opposite corner. The Lafayette Square Station of the Metro Rail is around the corner on Main Street.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

The home of two presidents, Millard Fillmore and Grover Cleveland, Buffalo has also played host to many American presidents for important speeches and other occasions, the most infamous being President McKinley’s visit to the Pan-American Exposition in 1901 that ended tragically with his assassination. Some of the presidential stories in Buffalo are often told, while others are less widely known. Join us on this tour to learn about presidents who are prominent in Buffalo history, particularly Millard Fillmore, Abraham Lincoln, Grover Cleveland, William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt.

BIDWELL PARKWAY
July 4, 27 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Soldiers Place, Buffalo. Abundant street parking is available along Bidwell, Chapin or Lincoln Parkways.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

The gorgeous houses on either side of Bidwell Parkway, especially those designed by the well-known local firm of Esenwein & Johnson, are the highlights of the tour. The beautiful Parkway with its rows of trees became one of Buffalo’s most fashionable residential addresses, and its popularity continues today as the center of the Elmwood Village. While strolling the Parkway designed by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux as part of their park and parkway system for the growing city of Buffalo, learn about the “Civil War District” they laid out that included Soldiers Circle, Lincoln Parkway, Bidwell Parkway, Bidwell Place, Chapin Parkway and Chapin Place. Along the way, see a house designed using H. H. Richardson’s plans and examine the large sculpture by Larry Griffis, “Flight of Birds,” and the newest public art in Buffalo, “Eden.”

DOWNTOWN DECO
July 6, 13, 20, 27 @ 10:30 a.m.
Meet: Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington St., Buffalo, corner of Washington and Mohawk streets. Two-hour metered parking is available on surrounding streets, and the Mohawk Parking Ramp is on the opposite corner. The Lafayette Square Station of the Metro Rail is around the corner on Main Street.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

This downtown walking tour focuses on downtown buildings built in Buffalo in one of the 20h century’s most distinctive architectural styles: Art Deco. Prevalent during the 1920s and 1930s, Art Deco is a unique style combining traditional motifs with modern imagery and materials of the Machine Age. Characterized by its use of bold geometric shapes, rich colors and lavish ornamentation, Art Deco buildings stand out for their beauty and symbolism. The Court Street corridor of downtown Buffalo, from Lafayette Square to Niagara Square, puts the Art Deco style on grand display. Buildings featured on this tour include Buffalo City Hall, Rand Building, Industrial Bank Building, Michael Dillon Federal Courthouse, Walter J. Mahoney State Office Building and the lobby of the Hotel Lafayette. While visiting these Art Deco gems, you will learn about Buffalo during the 1920s and 1930s when these buildings were being built

LOOKING UP: DOWNTOWN CEILINGS & SKYLIGHTS
July 6 @ 10:30 a.m.
Meet: Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington St., Buffalo, corner of Washington and Mohawk streets. Two-hour parking is available on surrounding streets, and the Mohawk Parking Ramp is on the opposite corner. The Lafayette Square Station of the Metro Rail is around the corner on Main Street.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Come ready to look up on this downtown walking tour! This tour will reveal the ornate ceilings and skylights found in many buildings throughout downtown Buffalo. While many people walk underneath them on a daily basis, the ceilings of many of Buffalo’s buildings are often their least-noticed feature. Join us on this tour to discover these beautiful works of art, many of which are hiding in plain sight!

FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT’S FONTANA BOATHOUSE
July 6, 13, 20, 27 @ 1 p.m.
July 15 @ 11 a.m.
Meet: 1 Rotary Row, Buffalo. Take Porter Avenue west, and immediately after crossing the I-190 expressway, turn right at the Fontana Boathouse sign. Follow the driveway back to the Boathouse, where there is ample on-site parking.
Cost: General $10, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Join Explore Buffalo for a tour of the only rowing boathouse designed by Frank Lloyd Wright! Originally designed by Wright in 1905 for the University of Wisconsin, the Boathouse was never built until its construction in 2007 in Buffalo along the shore of the Black Rock Channel. This was one of Wright’s favorite designs, as evidenced by his inclusion of the Boathouse in his now-famous Wasmuth Portfolio. Today the boathouse is being used for its original purpose as an active rowing facility, providing a unique opportunity to see one of Wright’s designs being used as originally intended. On the tour, you’ll learn about why it was never constructed in Wisconsin, and how it came to be built in Buffalo.

The tour includes both the exterior and interior of the Boathouse, providing an in-depth look at a masterpiece of Prairie Style design. While on the tour, enjoy the spectacular views of Lake Erie, the Niagara River and the Canadian shore from the Boathouse, so be sure to bring your camera!

SHEA’S PERFORMING ARTS CENTER RESTORATION TOUR
July 6, 20 @ 1 p.m.
Meet: Shea’s Performing Arts Center, 646 Main St., Buffalo
Cost: General $25, Student $20, Explorer Pass $20

Shea’s Buffalo Theater opened in 1926 as the jewel of Michael Shea’s movie theater empire in Buffalo. With no expense spared in its construction, the theater was designed by Rapp & Rapp from Chicago, with an interior designed by Tiffany Studios. Today, Shea’s Performing Arts Center is at the heart of Buffalo’s Theater District, hosting some of the most popular touring productions in the country. The ornate interior has been painstakingly restored, and this tour will showcase the results of this restoration. The tour will be led by Shea’s Restoration Consultant Doris Collins, who will explain the details of the restoration process during this in-depth tour of one of Buffalo’s favorite landmarks. This tour includes several flights of stairs and no elevator is available for access to upper levels. Cameras are encouraged and photography is permitted, with the exception of sets on stage.

CONCRETE CENTRAL KAYAK TOUR
July 6, 20, 27 @ 6 p.m.
Meet: Meet at Elevator Alley Kayak at The Barrel Factory at 65 Vandalia St., Buffalo, at the corner of Hamburg and Republic streets, across from Gene McCarthy’s. The tour will launch from Mutual Riverfront Park, a one-block walk from The Barrel Factory.
Cost: General $40, Student $35, Explorer Pass Holder $35

Buffalo’s waterfront along the Buffalo River is the setting for a dramatic transformation from an industrial landscape back to a natural waterway. Towering grain elevators still line the river, but nature has returned to reclaim the river. This kayak tour travels upstream from the Elevator Alley Kayak tour, and views historic sites not seen on the Elevator Alley Kayak tour, including the massive Concrete Central grain elevator, the largest built in Buffalo. This kayak tour is given in partnership with Elevator Alley Kayak, who will provide the kayaks for this urban adventure tour. Learn about the history of the grain elevators in Buffalo and have many terrific photo opportunities on this guided kayak tour!

This tour is approximately 2.5 hours in length, including time at the beginning of the tour to review basic kayaking technique and launch the kayaks. Tour participants must be able to kayak approximately four miles, from Mutual Riverfront Park to Canalside and back. Reservations are required for this tour as a limited number of kayaks are available. The minimum age for this tour is 14 years old. Cameras are encouraged but please note that there is a good chance they may get wet!

DELAWARE AVENUE MIDWAY
July 6, 20 @ 6 p.m.
July 15 @ 2 p.m.
Meet: Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site at 641 Delaware Ave., Buffalo. Parking is available in the TR Site’s parking lot accessible from Franklin Street or Delaware Avenue.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Historically the most prestigious address in Buffalo, Delaware Avenue is full of historic and architectural treasures. Join us for this tour of historic landmarks on the section of Delaware Avenue from North Street to Tupper Street (for the other half of “Millionaire Mile,” see the Delaware Avenue Mansions tour). Featured prominently in the tour are the Midway rowhouses, which are the only group of rowhouses built on Delaware Avenue. Also seen on this tour are historic mansions, churches, social clubs, and commercial buildings, which provide a glimpse into society life of Buffalo’s capitalists and business elite in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

EAST AURORA WALKING TOUR
July 7, 21 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Roycroft Campus Power House, 39 South Grove St., East Aurora
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Join Explore Buffalo for a walking tour of the charming Village of East Aurora to discover its rich history and many connections to the Arts & Crafts movement! Elbert Hubbard, one-time partner of John Larkin of Buffalo’s Larkin Soap Company, was one of the chief promoters of the Arts & Crafts style in architecture, furniture, stained glass, wallpaper and other hand crafts in the United States. The base of Hubbard’s operations was the Roycroft Campus in the Village of East Aurora, where this tour begins and ends. The tour will include interior visits to the Hubbard Museum, featuring an engaging variety of handcrafted antiques, as well as the Baker Memorial Church, featuring a complete set of color-rich stained glass windows by the Tiffany Company. At the end of the tour, the Roycroft Inn is the perfect place for an optional lunch (not included in the tour price).

LANDMARKS OF DELAWARE AVENUE
July 7, 21 @ 1 p.m.
Meet: This tour meets in the parking lot behind Blessed Sacrament Church at 1035 Delaware Ave., Buffalo. The entrance to the parking lot is on Linwood Avenue, north of West Utica Street. Parking in the church lot is allowed for this tour.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

CITY OF LIGHT BUS TOUR
July 7, 15, 28 @ 1 p.m.
Meet: Buffalo Seminary, 205 Bidwell Parkway, Buffalo
Cost: General $40, Explorer Pass $35

At the end of the 19th century, Buffalo was a major American city in the forefront of technological progress. It was a busy inland port and a railroad hub with heavy industry and state-of-the-art electricity – all of which brought great wealth to the city. These economic and technological developments culminated in 1901 when Buffalo hosted a spectacular world’s fair: the Pan-American Exposition. Experience Buffalo through the eyes of the narrator of Lauren Belfer’s historical novel, City of Light, which is set in Buffalo at the dawn of the 20h century. Reservations are required for this tour! Space is limited on the bus. For check-in, please print your confirmation email or show it on your phone. The tour is three hours in length and includes some walking and stairs. The tour proceeds rain or shine.

ALLENTOWN MOB
July 7, 14, 21, 28 @ 7 p.m.
Meet: Cafe 59, at 62 Allen Street at the corner of Franklin Street. Street parking on Allen, Franklin and other nearby streets is available and free on weekends or after 5 p.m.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

When Italian and Sicilian immigrants came to Buffalo, many of their local customs came with them – and so did the Mafia. Through much of the 20th century, the Allentown neighborhood was a hotspot for mob activity. Do you want to know how a Rembrandt painting stolen from a French museum found its way to Buffalo? Or how one Buffalo mobster got the nickname “Lucky Pants?” Come on the Allentown Mob Tour to find out!

DOWNTOWN LOCKPORT
July 8 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Flight of Five Winery in Old City Hall at 2 Pine Street, Lockport. Parking is available on the street or in the adjacent parking lot.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Lockport is a canal town unlike any other on the Erie Canal. Growing out of a need to scale the Niagara Escarpment, the Flight of Five is an engineering feat that has long attracted visitors to this area. While Lockport is well known for its important role in the success of the Erie Canal, there is more to Lockport than just the Locks. This tour will explore the development of Lockport from the early 1800s to modern times, including the humble Quakers who founded the town, inventors who brought about economic and cultural development, beautiful architecture and even a stop on the Underground Railroad.

GATES CIRCLE
July 8, 11 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: This tour meets at the southwest corner of Gates Circle and Chapin Parkway. Street parking is available along Chapin Parkway or Lafayette Avenue.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Buffalo’s streets and public spaces are dynamic with a variety of histories, architectural styles, and uses. Gates Circle is an excellent example of this variety, which this walking tour around the circle and surrounding streets will explore. Learn about the history of Gates Circle itself, along with the Olmsted & Vaux park system and surrounding streets including Lafayette, Delaware, and West Delavan Avenue and Chapin Parkway. Along the way, examine the architectural styles present on both residential and commercial buildings.

BUFFALO SPORTS HISTORY
July 8 @ 10:30 a.m.
July 19 @ 6:30 p.m.
Meet: Main & Perry streets, outside of KeyBank Center
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Buffalo is well known as a city passionate about its local sports teams. This downtown walking tour will trace the history of local sports teams, stadiums, and players, including both major and minor league teams and college sports. As we walk through downtown, enjoy some local sports trivia that will keep even the most fervent local fans guessing. Join us to learn about past sports history and gain appreciation of the enthusiasm that Buffalo sports fans have for the city’s current teams.

LARKIN DISTRICT
July 8, 22 @ 11 a.m.
Meet: Outside Flying Bison Brewing at 840 Seneca St., Buffalo, at the corner of Seneca and Lord streets.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

The Larkin District, or Larkinville, is the reborn former home of the Larkin Soap Company. In the early 1900s, the Larkin Company was one of the largest mail order companies in the country, and one of its executives, Darwin D. Martin, was responsible for bringing Frank Lloyd Wright to Buffalo. Today, the former Larkin factories and warehouses have been brought back to life and the area is bustling with activity once again. Join us to explore the Larkin Company’s past while enjoying the revitalized neighborhood.

COTTAGE DISTRICT
July 9, 23 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Buffalo Rome Café, 388 Porter Ave., Buffalo
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Little Summer Street has the most picturesque cottages in the city. Built in the 1870s by English immigrants, the charming cottages of Little Summer Street create a neighborhood truly unique in Buffalo. Explore this and other streets off “The Avenue,” the Olmsted-planned street now known as Richmond Avenue.

WEST SIDE MOB
July 9, 23 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Providence Social restaurant at 490 Rhode Island St., Buffalo. Free street parking is available on Rhode Island, Chenango and other nearby streets.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Buffalo’s West Side was once a hotbed of mob activity and government surveillance as law enforcement tried to make a dent in the criminal underworld, often with little success. Find out how the mob succeeded at eluding the government men for decades on this entertaining tour. This tour is adapted from Mike Rizzo’s book “Gangsters and Organized Crime in Buffalo.”

LANCASTER WALKING TOUR
July 9, 22 @ 2 p.m.
July 27 @ 6 p.m.
Meet: Lancaster Historical Society, 40 Clark St., Lancaster
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

One of the most charming village centers in Erie County, Lancaster has a wealth of historic commercial and residential architecture, including the landmark Lancaster Opera House with its prominent clock tower. The Village of Lancaster continues to be a popular place to live and shop, with many unique events held year-round. Join us on a walking tour of this historic village to learn more about the history of the village and appreciate its historic landmarks and streetscapes.

SILO CITY ARTS & ECOLOGY
July 9, 23 @ 2 p.m.
Meet: The tour meets in the parking lot at the corner of Ohio Street & Silo City, Buffalo. Ample parking is available on site.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Join us for a unique look at Silo City as we focus on natural and artistic features of the campus. In the past several years, major efforts have been undertaken at Silo City to restore natural plantings and habitats. These environmental projects have taken place with Buffalo’s historic grain elevators in the background. More recently, students from the University at Buffalo and other artists have added to the grounds with artistic installations. This tour will reveal the regeneration of this former industrial powerhouse.

CRAG BURN GOLF CLUB
July 10 @ 9 a.m.
Meet: Crag Burn Golf Club, 1231 North Davis Road, East Aurora. Meet in parking lot in front of the Club.
Cost: General $25, Explorer Pass Holders $20

Buffalo boomed after the turn of the century and our new-found wealth attracted some of the world’s best golf course architects who created remarkable championship golf courses unrivaled in all but a few major American cities. Join us as we discuss the evolution and art of golf course architecture while viewing selected golf holes of Crag Burn Golf Club designed by Robert Trent Jones. Guests on this tour will learn about the history of Crag Burn and gain an appreciation of the Golden Age of golf course architecture and its impact on Buffalo. Advance reservations are required for this tour. Space on this tour is limited.  Please dress appropriately for this tour of Crag Burn Golf Club and observe their dress code (no denim). This tour is approximately two hours in length. Please wear comfortable walking shoes and dress for the weather – the tour will proceed rain or shine.

POCKET PARKS OF ALLENTOWN
July 10, 24 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: This tour meets in front of First Presbyterian Church at One Symphony Circle, Buffalo. Parking is available in the church parking lot or on surrounding neighborhood streets.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

The western part of Buffalo’s historic Allentown neighborhood, where the northern edge of Buffalo’s original border meets the old New York State Reservation line, is a neighborhood of small parks and secluded enclaves. Grand and humble Victorian homes grace these neighborhood greenspaces, including Days Park, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted in 1887, and Arlington Park, where Olmsted lived while designing Buffalo’s park system. Symphony Circle, a key link in Olmsted’s park and parkway system, is the starting point for this tour. Join us for a walking tour of this charming area of Buffalo to learn more about its history while admiring its parks and homes.

COLUMBUS PARKWAY
July 12 @ 6 p.m.
July 30 @ 2 p.m.
Meet: Columbus Statue, 240 Porter Ave., Buffalo
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

The Columbus Park area of the Prospect Hill neighborhood is rich in history and architecture with a spectacular view of Lake Erie and wonderful lake breezes. The elegant homes that line the entrance to the Peace Bridge tell the story of some of Buffalo’s wealthiest citizens in an area defined by the Erie Canal, Olmsted’s Front Park and Fort Porter. Hear about the healing spring waters that ran through the area causing it to become a travel destination for many and the beautiful hotels that catered to those travelers. Known as Doctor’s Row, this neighborhood became home to generations of Italian-American families including the founder of our Columbus Day holiday. Come stroll the area and learn about its incredible history and the current challenges the neighborhood faces to preserve its heritage in face of the Peace Bridge expansion.

ESTATES ALONG THE AVENUE
July 14, 28 @ 1 p.m.
Meet: This tour meets in the parking lot behind Blessed Sacrament Church at 1035 Delaware Ave., Buffalo. The entrance to the parking lot is on Linwood Avenue, north of West Utica Street. Parking in the church lot is allowed for this tour.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Delaware Avenue’s northern section was predominately farmland throughout much of the 19th century, but began to be developed as family estates. Discover how some of Buffalo’s wealthiest families came to dominate this section of Delaware Avenue in the late 19th and early 20th century. While many of their former homes remain, most have been reused by businesses and institutions. Join us on this walking tour of one of Buffalo’s most beautiful streets to admire classic homes of the Gilded Age and learn about the families who built them.

PARKSIDE
July 15 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd, 96 Jewett Parkway, Buffalo
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Planned by Frederick Law Olmsted as an accompaniment to his Buffalo park and parkway system, the Parkside neighborhood features graceful tree-lined streets that curve around Delaware Park. Always one of the most popular neighborhoods in Buffalo, the homes of the Parkside neighborhood represent a range of architectural styles from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, including Arts & Crafts, Victorian, and American Foursquare. Neighborhood landmarks include the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd where the tour begins, the Art Deco former Pierce Arrow showroom at Main Street and Jewett Parkway, and the Darwin Martin House designed by Frank Lloyd Wright (admission to the Darwin Martin House is not included in this tour). Join Explore Buffalo on a walking tour of this picturesque Buffalo neighborhood to discover the beauty and history of its street, homes and past residents.

INSIDE DELAWARE AVENUE MANSIONS
July 15 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: American Red Cross at 786 Delaware Ave., Buffalo, at the corner of Summer Street. Parking is available in the Red Cross parking lot, accessible from Delaware Avenue or Summer Street.
Cost: General $20, Student $10, Explorer Pass $10

Join Explore Buffalo for a tour that features the interior of two historic mansions on Buffalo’s Millionaire’s Row. This tour will be a trip back in time to the Gilded Age, as you learn about the fascinating history of Buffalo’s business leaders at the turn of the 20th century. As Buffalo’s elite tried to outdo one another, they built larger and larger mansions along Delaware Avenue, hiring prominent architects and using the best materials available. This tour visits the interiors of the former Clement Mansion, now the American Red Cross, and the former Lockwood Mansion, now home to Child & Family Services. Explore Buffalo is proud to partner with both organizations to showcase the history of their buildings, and thanks them for their support.

FREE FAMILY TOUR – RIVERFRONT RENAISSANCE
July 15, 22, 29 @ 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Meet: Buffalo & Erie County Naval Park, 1 Naval Park Cove, Buffalo NY 14202 (near the Liberty Hound building).
Cost: Free

Get out and explore this summer with Explore Buffalo’s free tour series! Join us on Saturdays during the summer for the Riverfront Renaissance tour to learn all about the fascinating history of Buffalo’s waterfront, today one of our most exciting public spaces! After the tour, grab some sun and have fun designing your own grain elevators. All craft materials provided by Explore Buffalo, and youth participants also receive an Honorary Explorers Certificate, our Downtown Activity Book and more! Tours are open to all youth under the age of 18 with a parent or guardian. No reservations necessary!

Water has always been important to Buffalo’s growth – the Erie Canal ended here, grain elevators were invented here, and today, our waterfront is helping to reenergize the city and fuel our renaissance! Join us on this tour in one of Buffalo’s most vibrant public spaces, Canalside, and explore one of the oldest neighborhoods in Buffalo. On this tour, you’ll get to explore some of the most important aspects of our city’s past, as well as the new waterfront attractions that are bringing Buffalonians to its water once again.

ART OF THE SUBWAY
July 16 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: University Metro Rail Station on the University at Buffalo’s South Campus. Plentiful free parking is available adjacent to the University Station in the Park-and-Ride parking lot.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Buffalo’s Metro Rail system is an oft-overlooked treasure trove of modern art! Each station features unique artwork by a wide variety of artists, which will be seen on this tour as you travel from one end of the Metro Rail system to the other, getting off at each station along the way.

Metro Rail fare is not included in the tour price and must be purchased separately. This tour is approximately three hours in length and will end in downtown Buffalo, where you may either board an outbound train to return to University Station or stay for lunch before returning.

BRICK BY BRICK: RESIDENTIAL ALLENTOWN REVEALED
July 17, 31 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site at 641 Delaware Ave., Buffalo. Parking is available in the TR Site’s parking lot accessible from Franklin Street or Delaware Avenue.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free, TR Site Members Free

This walking tour of North Pearl and Franklin Street in the historic Allentown neighborhood focuses on residential architecture of the mid-19th century. Two of Allentown’s most intriguing residential streets, North Pearl and Franklin Streets feature brick mid-Victorian homes designed in the Italianate and Queen Anne styles. Located between Main Street and Delaware Avenue, these streets attracted professionals who wanted to combine comfortable suburban living with proximity to the boom of Buffalo’s commerce. Join us for this neighborhood walking tour to see excellent examples of these architectural styles and learn about the history of the homes and individuals who built them.

PUBLIC ART OF DOWNTOWN BUFFALO
July 18 @ 1 p.m.
Meet: Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington St., Buffalo, corner of Washington and Mohawk streets. Two-hour parking is available on surrounding streets, and the Mohawk Parking Ramp is on the opposite corner. The Lafayette Square Station of the Metro Rail is around the corner on Main Street.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

This tour gives us the opportunity to focus on the public art of downtown Buffalo. Come walk with us as we view and appreciate the varied media in downtown Buffalo’s sculptures, monuments, building ornamentation, advertising and street art.

SPOTLIGHT TOUR – COIT HOUSE
July 18 @ 5:30 p.m.; July 18 @ 6:30 p.m.; July 18 @ 7:30 p.m.
Meet: Coit House, 414 Virginia St., Buffalo. Street parking is available on Virginia and other nearby streets.
Cost: General $20, Explorer Pass $15

The Coit House is the oldest residential structure in the city having been built after the burning of Buffalo during the war of 1812. Built by George Coit near his business on the waterfront at Pearl and Swan, this house was moved around 1868 up Elmwood to its present site at Virginia and Elmwood. M&T Bank had purchased the former location for its new bank building. George Coit was one of the men responsible for obtaining the terminus of the Erie Canal designation which caused Buffalo to become a major city in the growing nation. This house is now privately owned by Sue-Jolie Rioux and Tim Boylan. They moved to Buffalo from Florida three years ago and have been lovingly restoring the structure and securing its future for hopefully another two hundred years. You will tour all three stories of the home and Sue-Jolie and Tim will describe some of the history of the home, its renovations and their painstaking part in the continued restoration efforts. Interior photography is not allowed on this tour.

ELMWOOD VILLAGE’S ALBRIGHT ESTATE
July 18 @ 6 p.m.
Meet: Elmwood Avenue Spot Coffee, 765 Elmwood Ave., Buffalo. Street parking is available on Elmwood Avenue and surrounding streets.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

In the heart of the thriving Elmwood Village are treasures and secrets waiting to be rediscovered on this walking tour. Twelve acres surrounded by West Ferry Street and Cleveland Avenue were once the lavish estate of John J. Albright, famous industrialist and philanthropist who is the namesake of our renowned art gallery’s 1905 building. After the Albright mansion was demolished, the property was developed into some of the most attractive residential real estate in the city. We will walk these tree-lined blocks to see remaining signs of the Albright Estate, learn more about this historic district, and how it developed into a residential neighborhood.

BUFFALO NIAGARA MEDICAL CAMPUS
July 20 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Innovation Center at 640 Ellicott St., Buffalo. Metered parking is available along Ellicott Street, or in the paid parking lot across the street from the Innovation Center.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass FREE

The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus is a hive of construction activity and development, with gleaming new medical facilities rising each year. See soon-to-open additions to the campus, including the University at Buffalo Jacobs School of Medicine and the John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital. This tour includes interior stops at the Innovation Center, University at Buffalo Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics, and Gates Vascular Institute. This tour is made possible by the support and cooperation of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Inc.

SEEING DOWNTOWN THROUGH BINOCULARS
July 21 @ 1 p.m.
Meet: Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington St., Buffalo, corner of Washington and Mohawk streets. Two-hour parking is available on surrounding streets, and the Mohawk Parking Ramp is on the opposite corner. The Lafayette Square Station of the Metro Rail is around the corner on Main Street.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Bring your binoculars and come ready to look up on this downtown walking tour! Many downtown buildings are topped with ornate details that can be difficult to see from ground level. On this tour, you will discover some of the most beautiful details in downtown Buffalo that are hiding in plain sight!

MR. & MRS. GROVER CLEVELAND
July 21 @ 6:30 p.m.
Meet: Grover Cleveland Statue, Buffalo City Hall, 65 Niagara Square, Buffalo
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass FREE

One of Buffalo’s most famous citizens, Stephen Grover Cleveland is still often overlooked or casually dismissed by the history books. With a meteoric rise from Sheriff of Erie County to President of the United States within just a few years, Cleveland made his mark not only on Buffalo but also on the nation. Cleveland’s career was not without its fair share of scandal, both in Buffalo and in the White House. His White House wedding to Buffalo’s Frances Folsom was the talk of the town for more than one reason. Join us on this entertaining tour as we trace the life of Buffalo’s President, Grover Cleveland and his First Lady.

NORTH TONAWANDA LUMBER CITY
July 22, 23 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: Carnegie Art Center at 240 Goundry St., North Tonawanda. Parking is available on the surrounding side streets.
Cost: Free

Hear some fascinating history about North Tonawanda and its location on the Erie Canal on this walking tour! How did it become associated with lumber? And what years did it surpass Chicago as the Lumber Capital of the World? Walk streets named after early land owners and influential citizens. Pass late 19th century and early 20th century homes with interesting architecture, and learn a little about their former residents. Admire the stained-glass skylight at the Carnegie Art Center. View the graves of the Herschell Family in an historic cemetery, and stop briefly inside the Allan Herschell Carrousel Factory Museum. Also stop at the earlier Herschell-Spillman Motor Company Complex, now transformed into the 21st century canalside residential Remington Lofts. Our walk will take us to the six buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places in North Tonawanda, with other places of historic significance along the way.

POSTMODERN DOWNTOWN ARCHITECTURE
July 25 @ 1 p.m.
Meet: Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington St., Buffalo, corner of Washington and Mohawk streets. Two-hour parking is available on surrounding streets, and the Mohawk Parking Ramp is on the opposite corner. The Lafayette Square Station of the Metro Rail is around the corner on Main Street.
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Locals and visitors usually fall in love with Buffalo’s highly decorated buildings such as the Guaranty Building (1896), City Hall (1931) and, of course, churches. These same people often find Modern architecture like City Court (1974) and Main Place Mall (1969) bland and boring by comparison. In reaction to Modern architecture, from the mid 1970s to the end of the 20th century, there was a return to color and ornament in new buildings including the Buffalo Bisons Stadium, the Buffalo Savings Bank Annex and the Flickinger Athletic Center. This style is known as Postmodern and this tour will focus on the ornamentation and color in a number of those and other Postmodern buildings, including Lafayette Court, Key Center at Fountain Plaza and City Centre skyscrapers.

HISTORIC CLARENCE HOLLOW
July 29 @ 10 a.m.
Meet: In front of the White Clubhouse on “Greatbatch Way” at Main Street Town Park in Clarence; for Google Maps use “Cummings Drive.”
Cost: General $15, Student $5, Explorer Pass Free

Discover a portion of the oldest town in Erie County, formed in 1808, as we walk along Main Street in the Hollow. We will learn about some of the earliest American settlers to the Western New York area as we tour Main Street to observe many of the historically significant buildings and their architecture. On this two-mile walking tour, we will explore the history of buildings that now house museums, shops and restaurants.

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