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The original item was published from 1/19/2021 5:15:01 PM to 2/5/2021 8:58:10 AM.

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Posted on: January 19, 2021

[ARCHIVED] Mayor Brown, The Division of Citizen Services Launch Wintermission 2021


Buffalo, NY - Mayor Byron W. Brown, joined by Director of Citizens Services Oswaldo Mestre and Nekia Kemp, the Executive Director of the Police Athletic League of Buffalo, is pleased to announce the start of Wintermission 2021. Wintermission provides a series of low-risk outdoor activities, between now and March, that City residents can enjoy safely during the COVID-19 global health pandemic. Wintermission 2021 kicks off on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service, Monday, January 18, 2021, at Martin Luther King Jr. Park, between 2 PM and 4 PM. At this particular event, a collaboration between Wintermission and Playstreets, youth, between the ages of 8-18, and their families are invited to attend this free and fun, outdoor sports and fitness program.

 Mayor Brown stated, “With COVID-19 still at large, it is more important than ever to take care of your physical and mental health. I encourage City residents to take part in Wintermission outdoor activities which provide safe, outdoor fun for all to enjoy.”

 “Wintermission is our way of embracing our ‘Winter City’ and all it has to offer. We want to empower residents to utilize winter programming that might not be available anywhere else, and to use it as an engagement tool that will bring about intergenerational play and interaction, as well as help residents focus on their emotional and physical well-being” said Director Mestre about the Wintermission program.

 The City of Buffalo, is partnering with 8 80 Cities (sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for the Wintermission initiative), a non-profit based in whose mission it is to bring citizens together to enhance mobility and public space in order to create vibrant, healthy, and equitable communities. Wintermission is comprised of a series of pilot programs and activities that will take place in neighborhoods and parks throughout Buffalo from January to March. They include Winter Fun in a Bag and Winter Porch Sports.

Winter Fun in a Bag

This project aims to get valuable winter resources to residents in need across Buffalo with the help of 20+ community partners and four distribution agencies: The Belle Center, Response2Love, West Side Youth Development Coalition, and Board of Block Clubs. The bags include items that fall under the following three themes: “Family Bonding”, “Physical and Emotional Well-Being” and “Winter Inclusivity”. These bags will be given to the community agencies on the 18th and will be distributed to identified in-need families via drive-through pick up or through the agencies’ regularly scheduled events.

Winter Porch Sports

“Winter Porch Sports” is a new pilot project, sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield and other organizations,  that aims to help residents stay physically active in a safe environment during the winter months, by offering activities they can do right on their front porch, yard, or sidewalk! Each event will feature a LED Billboard truck that will provide an exercise video in a continuous loop. This will allow residents to engage in group exercise with their neighbors, therefore decreasing social isolation while still following appropriate CDC guidelines. Look out for more information to come!



Buffalo PAL is pleased to partner with Mayor Byron W. Brown, the Buffalo Police Department, and neighborhood Block Clubs, to provide PLAYSTREETS! This free outdoor sports & itness program will operate at designated outdoor parks and recreation facilities throughout the City of Buffalo.

 Youth between the ages of 8-18 and their families will be able to participate in PLAYSTREETS in their own hosted events and during Wintermission sponsored events, and engage in an array of safe, healthy outdoor winter sports and social distancing itness activities with PAL Coaches and the BPD. Free snacks and beverages, courtesy of BlueCross BlueShield, will also be distributed to PLAYSTREETS participants. For more information, please email or visit:

 For more information regarding Wintermission Buffalo, please reach out to or visit the webpage

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