Buffalo & Erie County Naval & Military Park
Summer is full of cook-outs, enjoying the beautiful weather with friends and family, vacationing, and celebrating the multitude of freedoms that we are blessed with here in the United States of America. It is also a great time to celebrate and remember those who brought us these great freedoms. There were many sacrifices and major historical events that occurred to bring us to this beautiful summer.
I encourage you to to remember these sacrifices by visiting the Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park located in the marina at the Waterfront at Canalside. The park is open every day from 10 am-5 pm April until October. It proudly boasts being ranked #4 on Trip Advisor’s list of ‘Best Things to do in Buffalo.
The Park features three different naval vessels: USS The Sullivans Destroyer, USS Croaker Submarine, and the USS Little Rock, guided missile cruiser. The Destroyer is named after five heroic siblings: George, Francis (‘Frank’), Joseph (‘Joe’), Madison (‘Matt’), and Albert (‘Al’) Sullivan from Waterloo, Iowa, who served on the USS Junea (CL-52) during World War II. The siblings agreed to serve for the US Navy on the promise that they would all serve together. In fact their family motto was: “We stick Together”. On November 13, 1942 the USS Junea was sunk. Thus in the Battle of Solomon Islands all five brothers lost their lives. The Solomon brothers are the first group to ever have a US Naval Vessel named after them.
USS The Sullivans 537 displayed at the Park is the second of the two ships named after them and exemplifies the largest and significant class of U.S. destroyers utilized in World War II. This particular vessel earned nine battle stars for service, rescued many a survivor from planes and ships that went down during war. She served in: Philippines, Carolines, Marshalls, Mariannas, Korean War, and the Cuban Blockade.
The second vessel is a submarine that is identified in the National Registry of Historic Places. The USS Croaker is 311 feet long and weighs 1,525 tons. She launched on December 19, 1943 to fight against the Japanese in World War II and was not decommissioned until December 20, 1971. During her service she earned 3 battle stars and claimed eleven enemy vessels.
The third vessel at the Buffalo & Erie County Naval & Military Park is the USS Little Rock. This cruiser is well worth the tour. She is the only guided missile cruiser on display in the United States. She is also the sole survivor of the Cleveland class. The USS Little Rock was the first ship to bare the name of Little Rock, Arkansas. She is an impressive 610 feet long and weighs 10,670 tons.
Along with these three vessels, the Buffalo & Erie County Naval & Military Park also displays military aircrafts, tanks, and World War II artifacts in their history exhibits. Admission is only $10 for adults (17 years of age and older), $6 for seniors and children (5 years and younger). Please visit: www.BuffaloNavalPark.org for more details.
The Naval Park is located about thirty minutes from the Asa Ransom House, a 10-room Country Inn in Clarence. Some rooms have porch or balcony, all have private baths, most with fireplace. Dinner is served daily except Monday’s. Please view the rooms, menu and Inn at www.asaransom.com
Buffalo, New York boasts a wide range of music and theater productions and venues: ‘Live Music in Buffalo’ features live music at Canalside, the Buffalo Philharmonic at Kleinhans, operas at Lancaster Opera House and Broadway productions at Shea’s Performing Art’s Center. Many of our music venues are also rich in history.
Built in 1926, Shea’s Performing Art’s Center has grown to be a favorite attraction in Buffalo, NY. Shea’s is beautifully designed with architecture from all around the world. It opened just years before the Great Depression and still manages to thrive, ninety years later. This National Historical Site just announced their 2016-2017 season; featuring Finding Neverland which is launching it’s National Tour right here in Buffalo! Be whisked away to France with the music of George and Ira Gershwin in An American in Paris. Join Ralphie in his quest to get a Red Ryder bb gun in A Christmas Story: The Musical. Enjoy the humorous musical A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder. Relive the classics The Sound of Music and Cabaret. Plus special engagements include Stomp, 42nd Street, Wicked, and The Little Mermaid.
Another local favorite is the Lancaster Opera House. It opened for the first time in 1897. Through the years it has not only served as a stage for productions, dances, and commencements, but also: a food and clothing distributor during the Great Depression, a sewing room for war supplies during World War II, the Civil Defense Headquarters in the 1950s, and town hall. They re-opened for productions 35 years ago. Their 2015-2016 season is well under-way. This April experience three time Tony award winning comedy Lend me a Tenor. Be transported to New York City with Bette and Barry: Ya Gotta Have Friends. Join the mystery behind a murder with Night Watch. In May, Get stuck in the middle of two families feuding during a wedding reception with Lovers and Other Strangers. Enjoy a multi-course dinner with Asa Ransom House before heading over to Lancaster with our special Dinner Theater package.
Every Thursday night in the summer hosts free ‘Live Music in Buffalo’ at Canalside. Concerts are rain or shine with the headliner beginning between 8pm and 9pm. Located downtown, you will be able to experience the historic canals as you listen to the music. If you have not visited Canalside in recent years, you are sure to be impressed by the many renovations that have taken place. Enjoy the historic Concert listings for Summer 2016 will be released in May.
Buffalo is proud to have the Buffalo Philharmonic which performs at the National Historic Landmark, Kleinhans Music Hall. The hall has outstanding acoustics and is beautifully designed. The Buffalo Philharmonic’s 2016-2017 season begins this May with Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess and A Journey through the Alps in June. View an entire listing of their events on their website.
Asa Ransom House also hosts concerts on our front lawn throughout the months of June and July. These concerts are sponsored by the Clarence Hollow Association. Last summer featured: Shakespeare in the Hollow, Beatles play the Hollow, Kindred plus Irish Dancers, and Salute to Broadway. The 2016 concerts begin July 14 with Chris Maloney -Pop,Sole & Gospel. July 28 – ‘Magic of course – a unique brand of music and comedy for all ages. August 4 features Flipside – Voted top Classic & Pop Band in Buffalo.
Whichever style of musical arts you prefer, we encourage you to try a venue in Buffalo, NY. Of course, we would love for you to begin and/or end your evening with us, at Asa Ransom House. We are located 18 miles from Shea’s, 9 miles from Lancaster Opera House, and 19 miles from Kleinhans and from Canalside. We would be happy to host you for dinner and overnight in one of our ten beautiful rooms. Call our front desk at 716-759-2315 for details.
You can walk through WWII warships at the Buffalo & Erie County Naval & Military Park (America’s largest inland naval park). One can set sail on an excursion with the Queen City Ferry, Spirit of Buffalo, Buffalo Harbor Cruises or Seven Sees Sailing Center. Prefer to make your own waves? Explore Lake Erie and the Buffalo River (home to the mammoth grain elevators) with a canoe, kayak or SUP (stand-up-paddle board) rental from BFLO Harbor Kayak. Pedal your way down the river with Water Bikes of Buffalo, or a guided paddle tour with Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper.
Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site with State-of-the-art exhibits and a guided tour of the Ansley Wilcox home. It takes you inside the moment when “Teddy” Roosevelt became the nation’s youngest president ever due to the shocking assassination of President William McKinley in 1901.
Albright-Knox Art Gallery, 150 years old in 2012. Albright-Know has amassed an extraordinary collection of modern and contemporary art, which shares through a constantly changing program of exhibits, classes and special events.
Buffalo’s Top Attractions include the Frank Lloyd Wright’s Martin House Complex. Frank Lloyd Wright’s Martin House Complex, built for a wealthy Buffalo businessman between 1903-1905, stands as one of the architect’s masterpieces and also as a pinnacle of his Prairie School era. For examples of his later work, head to nearby Derby to see Graycliff Estate, three buildings set amid 8.5 acres of rolling lawns and gardens.
The Basilica of Our Lady of Victory. Lackawanna’s basilica is a stunning early 20th-century church built almost entirely of white marble. Guided tours highlight the shrine’s hundreds of paintings, sculptures and mosaics. A museum describes the multiple charitable works of its founder, Father Nelson Baker. Ourladyofvictory.org
Herschell Carrousel Factory Museum Take a ride on the 1961 #1 Special carousel, listen to the Wurlitzer band organ, see how music rolls are produced and view our exhibits and vintage ride collection. www.carrouselmuseum.org
The Medina Railroad Museum. A collection of artifacts, memorabilia and one of the largest HO scale layouts in the nation. Enjoy a leisurely 34-mile, two-hour round-trip ride through the scenic Erie Canal Heritage Corridor aboard a vintage 1947 passenger coach. The museum is the largest freight depot museum in the country. www.Railroadmuseum.net
The Roycroft Campus. The Roycroft Campus in East Aurora was in the vanguard of American Arts and Crafts style in the early 1900’s. Today the Roycroft standard of clean lines and simplicity of design can be explored in the classes and demonstrations. Visitors may shop the gallery and tour nine original structures, such as the inn, the chapel, the print shop, the furniture shop and the copper shop.
A centrally located, convenient and comfortable Inn to rest and dine is the historic ten-room Asa Ransom House, just north-east of Buffalo in Clarence. A full country breakfast is included, some rooms offer a porch or balcony, and most feature a fireplace. Near the NY&WS hiking/biking trail, Antique World and interesting village shops. View rooms & menu at asaransom.com Call 1-800-841-2340 for last minute specials and events. We look forward to serving you! Bob Lenz – Innkeeper