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Our Fair City

First of all, a big hello to the reader who voted, under One Thing You Hope Will Happen This Year, for “Byron Brown public nudity scandal.” We’re crossing our fingers in the newsroom, too.

A strange thing happened in our best of Buffalo poll this year: As far back as anyone here can remember, the Most Over-covered News Stories of the Year and the Most Under-covered News Stories of the year have been the exact same stories. Western New Yorkers, it has always seemed, wanted to know more about the subjects that most exhausted them. In recent years, for example, stories that our readers considered both under- and over-covered included the promised BassPro store for the waterfront, the Peace Bridge expansion plan, and the Seneca casino downtown.

The Statler Towers (photo by Rose Mattrey)

This year’s poll yields different results. The only absolute overlap is coverage of the followup to the Flight 3407 crash in Clarence—the investigation into the causes of the crash, Congressional hearings, the changes in training requirements, etc. One could argue that the One Sunset scandal, which our readers consider over-covered, is analagous to corruption in City Hall and the Brown administration, which our readers consider under-covered, but I think that’s wrong: I think that our readers mean to suggest that other misdeeds in city government require more of the sort of attention that was lavished on Leonard Stokes, his subsidized failure of a restaurant, and his relationship with the mayor.

What can I say? We’ll try.

On the whole, Erie County Executive Chris Collins got off easy over in the Names & Faces section of the poll. (We dropped the Worst Politician category this year; the winners never picked up their plaques.) But in this section of the poll, our readers served him his just desserts: The biggest scandals of the year include the various gaffes that forced Collins to fold up his gubernatorial campaign and the suicides at the Erie County Holding Center, which also rank among the most under-reported stories.

In regard to our built environment, it seems as though the unlamented departure of Bashar Issa may have infected our readers with Statler fatigue: Lots of voters want to see the landmark restored, but a significant minority said the thing should simply be torn down.

Courage, Buffalo. Strength. Let’s not surrender on our patronage just yet.

—geoff kelly

Finalists are listed in no particular order. Winners to be announced April 26, 6-9pm, at Town Ballroom.

Best Annual Festivals

Italian Festival
Taste of Buffalo
Allentown Art Festival
Elmwood Festival of the Arts
Music Is Art

Best Annual Fundraisers

Ride for Roswell
Variety Club Telethon
Red Cross MASH Bash
Artvoice Mardi Gras for Hospice
KISS Cares 4 Kids Radiothon

Biggest Scandals of the Year

The re-election of Byron Brown
The many gaffes of Chris Collins
Suicides at the Holding Center
The One Sunset fiasco
Everything Brian Davis does

Most Over-covered Stories of the Year

Terrell Owens becomes a Buffalo Bill
Extreme Home Makeover on West Side
Followup on Flight 3407 crash
One Sunset fiasco
The swine flu

Nost Under-covered Stories of the Year

Suicides and abuse at Holding Center
Followup on Flight 3407 crash
Corruption in City Hall and the Byron Brown administration
Anything positive

Save These Buildings

Lafayette Hotel
Central Terminal
HH Richardson complex
AM&A’s building
Statler Towers

Tear These Buildings Down

Convention Center
City Hall (“figuratively”)
Partially built Seneca casino
Statler Towers

Coolest Up-and-coming Neighborhoods

Grant Street
Amherst Street
Hertel Avenue

Things You Hope Will Happen This Year

Peace Bridge project commences
Waterfront development continues
Sabres win Stanley Cup
Byron Brown resigns
More jobs come to town

...and the nominees are:
IntroductionFood & Drink
Shops & ServicesNightlife
NomineesThe Fine Arts
People PowerOur Fair City

The 2010 Best of Buffalo Winners List

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