This Smithsonian Exhibit is on Display in Buffalo Now

By Drew Brown

Published on

From now until November 17th, the Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village is housing an exhibit straight from the Smithsonian Institute. Water/Ways, an exhibition from the Smithsonian Institute’s Museum on Main Street program, takes a deep dive into water as an essential component of life on our planet.

With compelling text, imagery, interactive exhibits and videos, Water/Ways examines how water affects climate, agriculture, transportation, industry, recreation, culture and spirituality. And with water being such an important part of life in and around Buffalo, it makes you think about all the ways we use water every day.

“With the 200th anniversary of the Erie Canal, and collaboration from organizations focused on water like Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper, WNY Gas & Steam Engine Association, Buffalo Niagara Heritage Brewers Guild, boating organizations, the Sierra Club, and indigenous peoples from the Tuscarora Nation and Tonawanda Nation, you start talking to all of these people and you say, ‘How can we NOT host this?,'” says Karl Reifschneider, Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village’s Curatorial Assistant & Education Coordinator.

In addition to the Water/Ways exhibit, local exhibits, events and educational programs from Buffalo and Niagara communities will enhance the exhibition. These include:  A display of boats, including a 1938 mahogany Chris-Craft that was raced on the Niagara River. The boat is provided by Classic Cruises and Restoration Inc.

• A display of functioning steam engines from WNY Gas & Steam Engine Association.

• An art exhibit by watercolor artists Jane Stoddard of East Amherst and Dan Meyer of Amherst.

• A fountain by Hahn’s Ponds with local stone that sets the mood as people enter the exhibit. People can see, hear and touch the water.

• Films on water will be shown in Heritage Village’s new theater sponsored by Stereo Advantage and the Smart Squad Installation Team.

• Community partners will offer lectures, demonstrations, performances and exhibits on topics including the Haudenosaunee connection with water, how to keep our waterways clean, how steam engines work and the Erie Canal.

To help kick off National Native American Heritage Month, from November 2nd to 3rd, the Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village will also celebrate Indigenous People Weekend in conjunction with the Water/Ways exhibit. Demonstrations of beadwork, wampum belts, dancing, and storytelling will be among the activities.

The Water/Ways exhibition continues through Sunday, November 17th.
Hours: Wednesday (10am-5pm), Thursday (10am-8pm), Friday (10am-5pm), Saturday (10am-5pm), Sunday (12pm-5pm).

Indigenous People Weekend will be held from November 2nd to 3rd – Saturday (10am-5pm), Sunday (12pm-5pm).

Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village, 3755 Tonawanda Creek Road, Amherst
Visit for more information.

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Drew Brown

Born in Buffalo's Historic Polonia District, raised in East Aurora, current resident of the West Side, and I'm still discovering new things in Buffalo every day. I'm proud to represent our community as the Director of Media & Content Strategy for Visit Buffalo Niagara. Let's go Buffalo!