Making Buffalo Home
Making Buffalo Home | Cultural Celebrations
Learn about Diwali | PBS Featured Video


Rating: NR

Diwali, the "festival of lights," marks the beginning of the new year. It is celebrated every autumn in the northern hemisphere (spring in southern hemisphere). Revellers adorn themselves in their finest clothes, illuminate the interior and exterior of their homes with diyas (oil lamps or candles), offer puja to Lakshmi, the goddess of prosperity and wealth and partake in family feasts.

Hindu Festival of Lights
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Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly | PBS
Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly | PBS

Cultural Celebrations

Burmese Water Festival
Featured Celebration

Burmese Water Festival

The Burmese Water Festival (Thingyan which means “changing over”), is the celebration of Burma’s New Year. It is traditionally held over a three day period in April in Burma.

August: Cultural Celebrations

German-Polish Celebration

Aug. 11, 2018

The German and Polish have one huge thing in common and that is their love for food and beer. Spring Garden commemorates this love by hosting the German-Polish Celebration. Bite into a bratwurst or sip on a nice cold beer to celebrate the culture.

Karen Wrist Tying Event
Aug. 11, 2018

Wrist Tying is commonly celebrated yearly when all the Karen people in a village or nearby villages come together in unity and conduct the wrist tying ceremony. This year the 10th annual Karen Wrist Tying event will take place at LaSalle Park on August 11 from 9am-6pm. Come celebrate the Karen culture with the Karen Society of Buffalo. During the celebration, traditional dances, cultural shows, food and other cultural related exhibitions will be demonstrated. This event brings unity not just within the Karen community, but also other communities who desire to bring everyone together and make the city of Buffalo a better place to live.

Puerto Rican & Hispanic Day Parade

Aug. 18, 2018

The Puerto Rican & Hispanic Day Parade celebrates their immaculate heritage in hopes to educate others and preserve the culture. Everyone is invited to join in on the fun, indulge in some food, or participate in the parade.

Scottish Festival

Aug. 18-19, 2018

Celebrate the Scottish cultural heritage! Enjoy Highland Games, the gathering of the clans & pipe Bands, band and solo pipe and drum competitions, world class music, dancing & workshops, Celtic marketplace, local craft beer, wine, Mead & Scotch and Scottish Food.

Celtic Festival & Gathering of the Clans

August 24 & 25, 2018

Come join us for Caber Toss, Bagpipes, 15 Clans attending, Plus Kilted Throwers club - The Buffalo Heavies - Competitions, Food Vendors, Beer & Wine Garden. This year we are featuring the Town Pants on Friday evening from 7 to 9:30pm. Also, Penny Whiskey Saturday afternoon. This festival raises money for our scholarship fund for area high school students going to college.

Buffalo Irish Festival

Aug. 24-26, 2018

Celebrate your Irish Heritage or just join in the party at the Buffalo Irish Festival! There’s live music and entertainment, including traditional music, folk music and Irish step-dancing, Irish food, beer and an artisan market featuring exclusively Irish goodies. This weekend-long festival is a colorful celebration of all things Irish.

Egyptian Festival

Aug. 24-26, 2018

This year is the 10th annual Egyptian Festival by St. Mary St. Moses Coptic Orthodox Church! Adventure into the Egyptian culture with delicious food, decadent deserts, traditional gifts and a community that will have you feeling like family. The exuberant cultural celebration includes church tours, raffles, delicious authentic Egyptian cuisine, Coptic/Cultural gift shop, basket auction, activities for children, and more.

Festival of India

August 25, 2018

Celebrate Indian culture and heritage at the Canalside! Enjoy the parade, live music and performances. Join activities such as yoga, henna and face painting. Stop by the marketplace filled with food, jewelry, handcrafts and clothing.

Ukrainian Independence Day Festival

Aug. 26, 2018

Buffalo Ukrainian Independence Day Festival will feature delicious foods, cultural program, music, dance performance, basket raffle, vendors, and more. This August 24th will be the 27th year that the world recognizes Ukraine as its own country; and Sunday August 26th it will be celebrated at the Ukrainian Cultural Center Dnipro in Buffalo by having Ukrainian dancers, musicians, food, beer, vendors, and tours of our beautiful cultural center! Free admission, and ample parking is available. For more info contact Program Director Akacia Belmega.

September: Cultural Celebrations

International Polka Association Festival & Convention

Aug. 31-Sep. 2, 2018

The Festival will kick off with a welcome party on Friday, the Polka Music Hall of Fame and Music Awards Banquet and Pool Party on Saturday and a Polka Mass and annual election of officers and convention meeting on Sunday.

South Buffalo Irish Festival
Sep. 1, 2018

18th Annual South Buffalo Irish Festival. A celebration of Irish music and culture. A full day of Irish music, dancing, food, drink and children's activities!

Buffalo German Fest

Sep. 1-2, 2018

A weekend long celebration of German Heritage and culture. Indulge your interest in German food, music and culture – eating authentic German delicacies, drinking German beer, and listening to 4 different bands.


Sep. 9, 2018

Schlachtfest is a one of a kind experience that is sure to be fun for the whole family and a one for the scrapbook. Celebrated four times annually throughout the fall at the Mountain Brauhaus in Round Top, NY; festivities include live German/American music by a renowned German band, authentic German/American cuisine, abundant German beer on tap, topped with a traditional Schlachtfest celebration parade lead by our very own Master of Ceremonies.

Ukrainian Festival

Sep. 9, 2018

St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church in Kenmore host this annual Ukrainian Festival.

Dożynki Polish Harvest Festival

September 14, 15 and 16, 2018

This joyful celebration, which dates to the middle ages, is the Polish equivalent of America’s Thanksgiving holiday. At Corpus Christi Church, Dożynki is an opportunity to give thanks for all manner of blessings. Visitors to the harvest festival will find authentic Polish food and music, in an inspirational setting. One of the highlights of the event is the 10th Annual Buffalo’s Best Pierogi Contest on Saturday.

Hamburg Oktoberfest

Sep. 15, 2018

Hamburg Oktoberfest is an authentic German festival that features beer, food, wine, music, a car show, dancing and live entertainment. This annual event is held in Memorial Park in the beautiful Village of Hamburg.

Niagara Celtic Heritage Festival & Highland Games

Sep. 15-16, 2018

The Niagara Celtic Heritage Society invites you to their 18th Annual Niagara Celtic Heritage Festival & Highland Games. Located less than an hour from both Buffalo and Rochester, NY, guest are immersed in the traditions and pageantry of Ireland, Scotland, Wales and all things Celtic! Join the 12,000 others who come and celebrate this amazing culture.

Old Falls Street’s Oktoberfest

Sep. 29, 2018

Celebrate at the 7th annual Niagara Falls Oktoberfest on Old Falls Street. Authentic German food, beer and wine along with beer tent, street vendors, live music, German dancers and keg tapping. Family fun zone offers arts & crafts, petting zoo and bounce house for kids. Free admission. Hours are from 1:00 pm to 8:00 pm.
October: Cultural Celebrations

Buffalo Intl. Film Festival

Oct. 4, 2018

Champions regional, national and international films that push the limits of independent cinema-presenting quality films from around the world to WNY residents and visitors.

Pulaski Day

Oct. 11, 2018

General Pulaski Memorial Day is a United States holiday in honor of General Kazimierz Pułaski (spelled Casimir Pulaski in English), a Polish hero of the American Revolution. This holiday is held every year on October 11 by Presidential Proclamation, to commemorate his death from wounds suffered at the Siege of Savannah on October 9, 1779 and to honor the heritage of Polish Americans.

Oktoberfest – SGTV Edelweiss Buffalo

Oct. 20, 2018

Annual Oktoberfest with German music, performances and beer. Performances by SGTV Edelweiss and visiting verein.
November: Cultural Celebrations

Incredible India

November 1, 2018

This program is an Indian cultural workshop for families with children ages 4 and up. Participants will have the opportunity to take part in story time and dance. This workshop is presented by Akruti Barbaria of Kulture Khazana. Thursday, November 1 at 6:30 pm.

Western New York Refugee Film Festival Double Feature
Nov. 1 & 2, 2018

Renga for the West is a beautiful, moving, and heartfelt series of self-directed refugee short films, augmented with observational footage shot by the production team from their own perspectives as native-born Montanans. The Refugees of Shangri-La is the story of our new neighbors. After being torn from paradise and surviving twenty long years in refugee camps, the Kingdom of Bhutan's forgotten exiles abandon hopes of returning home and seek a future in a far off place called America.

Diwali Celebration
November 3, 2018

Come celebrate Diwali (the Indian festival of lights) with us! Nov. 3, 2018. We will do a special Diwali story, learn to make some paper diyas, and whip out some traditional Rangoli (floor art). We will also serve some delicious Indian food. All ages are welcome.

Polish Ancestor Day and All Souls Mass
November 4, 2018

Join us in praying for the souls of our dearly departed on Sunday, November 4 in the age old Polish tradition of visiting the cemetery around All Saints and All Souls Day. Beginning at 2 p.m, special Polish cemetery candles will be available in the Mausoleum, along with information about Polish family research provided by the Polish Genealogical Society of N.Y.S.

Buffalo Without Borders/Centennial Extravaganza

Nov. 8, 2018

Come celebrate the International Institute of Buffalo’s centennial! There will be food, entertainment and crafts from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East all in one room, on one night at Statler City.
January: Cultural Celebrations

Western New York Refugee Film Festival

January 24 & 25, 2019

The Letter: An American Town and the Somali Invasion is a riveting documentary which chronicles the arrival of 1,100 newly arrived Somali refugees in the overwhelmingly white town of Lewiston in Maine. The town became infamous for the public letter penned by the mayor telling Somalis to stop coming to the town, which made international headlines.

Making Buffalo Home is a two-year, in-depth WNED | WBFO engagement initiative to inform and raise awareness of immigration for our entire community. The project aims to help the region develop a better understanding of the shared opportunities and challenges we face together as long-time residents and new immigrants and refugees.

Making Buffalo Home is funded by Rich Products Corporation and Rich Family Foundation.