Saturday, November 11, 2017

Rainbows on Allen spread inclusiveness

Allentown Association Board President Seth Amman shows off one of his Rainbows on Allen painting, a project meant to celebrate inclusiveness and acceptance of the LGBTQ community. “Allentown has long been seen as a LGBTQ friendly neighborhood in Buffalo and we often see that the rainbow flags are flown for about  a month, which is nice, but people say it’s kind of sad to see them come down,” Amman said. The paintings add a permanent stamp in the community, something that Amman hopes will make people feel secure . “I want people to understand, or get an immediate sense, that it’s a safe , inclusive place. That's always a question more and more with the changing environment and it’s important for everyone,” Amman said. Amman hopes to add more sidewalk paintings, but doesn’t have any set locations due to the everchanging redevelopment of the Allentown area. “It’s a start, things change and happen fast in the city, especially in an area like this where there's so much happening. I think we have to protect what's great about Allentown and I think this symbol offers up that conservation.” #RainbowsOnAllen and #BuffaloIsAwesome are two social hashtags that are etched into the paintings that people can use when they post pictures of the artwork. “The hashtag can travel globally. It talks about the type of community Allentown is, the type of community that Buffalo is and people can interact with them and share their story,” Amman said. By Kelly Khatib and Michael Read