We’ve been back home for over a year now, and it’s no secret we love talking about it. Our hometown pride is strong and there are plenty of reasons we love to talk about our little abode near the Erie Canal.
Sitting on the patio eating nachos the other night at Mariachi de Oro,I realized that everything I ever need to be happy can be found right here in WNY. Alix doesn’t agree, only because avocado farms are not part of our agricultural landscape. But I started musing about all the things I love about our town, and here are the 11 reasons I love Medina, NY:
- The people of Medina. Some people have lived in Medina all of their lives, while others like us moved away to bigger cities and have returned home with a longing for our hometown. Thus far, it seems Medina has been able to balance traditional viewpoints and new ideas, while keeping in mind that progress helps us all. Our community is full of creative and talented people doing their part to help keep Medina fresh and progressive.
2. Ale in Autumn, Steampunk, Olde Tyme Christmas, the Farm to Table dinner – Medina knows how to put on events. For everyone attending, remember to use #MedinaNY if a specific hashtag isn’t created. This is likely the easiest way to promote the event and the area, and get those outside our town interested in visiting as well.
3. You’re about to roll your eyes, because I’m going to say a couple words that many of you don’t even want to consider for months: Christmas and the holidays win every year in Medina. Olde Tyme Christmas, Parade of Lights, Santa on Main Street, the red mail box, window displays – the list goes on. The holiday season is full of magic, and Medina knows how to create a magical holiday season for us all.
4. One of the reasons so many people left in the past was the thought that nothing was happening, and growth was stagnant. On the contrary, the last decade has been very different and the revitalization of the area continues in the most positive ways. The Robert E. Newell Building (Hart House Hotel, Shirt Factory, 810 Meadworks), Bent’s Opera House, recent purchase of the Old Medina High School, Fitzgibbons, and every shop that’s gone through recent renovations deserves recognition for breathing new life in our historic village.
5. The culinary scene is growing! While diners are included in every small town (and you bet we love ours, we are looking at you, Rudy’s!) you can also visit a fine dining restaurant (Zambistro) and some of the best Mexican food around (Mariachi de Oro). The options are continuing to expand, but as of right now residents aren’t forced to leave town for a night out.
6. While the Finger Lakes Wine Trail might be more popular, the Niagara Wine Trail is a sleeping giant. The wine continues to get better, and more unique options like mead (810 Meadworks) and cider (Steampunk written about in NY Times) continue to gain attention outside of the area.
7. As the area continues to see positive change, the history of our community is strongly embraced. Most of the storefront windows include a look at the location’s past, new businesses are taking advantage of previous names, and old buildings are breathing new air. The history is rich and the future can build on it.
8. It might be forgotten and less exciting, but the Erie Canal is kind of a big deal. Alix runs the towpath daily, and our of town guests were immediately drawn to the basin. While revitalization plans might not take shape for a couple years, some businesses have already started to take advantage of the proximity to such a special feature (and yes, we still have to get on those water bikes from Pedal and Paddle!)
9. The agricultural community has always been strong, and the fairly young Canal Village Farmers’ Market helps put this on display every Saturday. Meats, cheeses, apples, wines, and more highlight another reason to start your weekends downtown.
10. It might only be a couple of blocks, but the rebirth of Main Street is evident. Restaurants, bars, the tea shop, book store, tailor, salons, clothing stores, hotels have all helped to rebuild and energize the community’s business district. Trees and lighting along West Center Street are hopefully just the beginning of this revitalization on neighborhood streets.
11. Everyone knows I’m a proponent for increased social media, and while not everyone in town has an online presence, most are using #MedinaNY on Instagram which universally helps to promote the area. In just the last year we’ve been hearing from more friends across WNY pointing to Medina because of social media posts. Beyond Instagram, the Facebook group Memories of Medina deserves a lot of credit. With thousands of members, the group not only promotes upcoming events, but also shares stories of the past. If you miss Medina or need a reminder of why we are all do proud, this page does the trick.
What are your favorite things about Medina?