NOW Digital Residency: Buffalo Wing Trail
What do you do in your industry?
My husband and I own and operate an outdoor recreational guide service here in WNY (Western New York) called SUP Erie Adventures. I instruct and guide paddleboarding and kayaking on Lake Erie and many rivers throughout WNY. I also take people out on guided hiking tours. We have four paddling rental locations throughout WNY that we also manage.
We started our business because we saw so much underutilized recreational resources in Western New York four years ago. Today more and more people are getting out in nature and that’s been our driving force since we started.
What’s one skill you wish you had possessed at the very start of your career?
Better marketing strategies.
If you wanted to impress one of your peers who had never been to Buffalo, where would you take them?
We get visitors from around the world all of the time and we always take them to Sunset Bay, which is where we started our business. It has white sandy beaches and an amazing view – most people say they feel like they are somewhere tropical when they come visit. We also love Grandview Bay in Angola which has some of the best wind and waves on all of Lake Erie. And we never miss a trip to Zoar Valley – it’s actually one of the few places on the East Coast that has true old-growth forest, not to mention 300-foot cliffs and Class-III whitewater when it rains hard.
Where would we find you on a typical Saturday morning?
If it is windy (which it often is), I’d be on Lake Erie Kite-boarding. Sunset Bay and Grandview Bay are our two favourite spots. The wind is world-class. If it’s not windy, we are usually teaching people stand-up paddle boarding or kayaking at Cabana Sams in Sunset Bay, Mickey Rats in Grandview Bay, Dos Amigos in Hamburg or Point Gratiot down in Dunkirk.
Describe the very first time you tasted Buffalo wings.
I can’t remember my first time but I love all the different sauces created here in WNY.
Where do you go in Buffalo when you need time to be creative or just focus on what you love?
On the water or in the woods. There is so much variety of water, from Lake Erie to all of the rivers, creeks and ponds. With our wide variety of weather there is always something exciting to do. We joke that Western New York is one of the few places that in the winter you can surf, kite-surf, run white-water and ice climb all in the same day within a 30-mile radius.
Name a local mover-and-shaker who inspires you.
My friend Carrie Rinehart who owns Rusterior Design and created Buffalo Boss Babes, which empowers women entrepreneurs.