Celebrating the storied heritage of Erie County

At times in our history it is important to pause and reflect on where we have been, the challenges we have overcome and the successes we have celebrated, and the path that has brought us to where we are today. Erie County’s rich, vibrant and bustling history is currently being spotlighted and celebrated throughout our bicentennial year as “EC200” festivities gives us all the opportunity to become better acquainted with the people who shaped our county into what it is today. Having this historical perspective makes us better-prepared to understand our role and responsibility in continuing Erie County’s growth for the next 200 years.

I strongly recommend that you join us in celebrating Erie County’s bicentennial as we proudly commemorate the past and anxiously look forward to the future. There are many different opportunities to focus on how our region has capitalized on history, art and architecture to become a heritage tourism destination that is talked about all across our nation.

Many people have worked hard to organize and coordinate various ways to help engage Erie County residents and visitors to our region by providing access to interactive activities and countywide initiatives that I hope will inform, inspire and entertain you. The planning process for this year-long celebration began almost two years ago.

Using input from dozens of stakeholders from various sectors of our community, our notable partners in this endeavor include Visit Buffalo Niagara, the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library System, Explore & More Children’s Museum, Buffalo History Museum, The Baird Foundation, Flying Bison Brewing Company and the Erie County Department of Environment & Planning.

I also encourage everyone to obtain a copy of the “Erie County Heritage Passport” to learn more about the nearly three dozen local history museums and historical societies that exist in our community. Each one is unique and helps to commemorate the diverse nature of each city, town and village located with the county. You can download a printable booklet of the Erie County Heritage Passport by visiting Erie County’s website or make a request to obtain one by sending an email to: ErieCounty200@gmail.com.

For more information about the Erie County Bicentennial, I encourage you to visit www.erie.gov and click on “EC200” to access details on upcoming events, future programming and detailed information about our continued commemoration of the storied heritage of Erie County.