VisitRochester CEO and president Don Jeffries
Roots: I was born and raised in Brighton and have been a volunteer fireman with the Brighton Fire Department since I was 18. I now am one of the fire commissioners.
Growing up: I played a lot of baseball. We lived near Brighton High School, so there was always a pickup game. I worked a lot as a kid at my dad’s gas station, which was right next to Don and Bob’s, and that was the spot that was a great gathering place for me and my friends.
Rochester is ...: Really good at being a warm, friendly and affordable place to visit. We are also great at festivals; I’m told that in total Rochester has 137 festivals. We are a great region for tourism, entertainment and recreation. We have the cultural attractions of a city twice our size, great entertainment districts such as the East End and Corn Hill, and the attraction of the Finger Lakes region and its wineries.
Potential: Yahoo just named the Finger Lakes as one of the 10 best lake regions in the world. I see a lot of growth in tourism, as Rochester is the gateway to the Finger Lakes—and with Lake Ontario we have it all.
On the town: My ideal night out is to have a date night with my wife, Nancy, and pick from one of the amazing restaurants we have in our area and have a great dinner and romantic night. I also love the fact that we attract big-name entertainment, Broadway shows at the Auditorium Center, entertainment at Blue Cross Arena and CMAC and all the other arts groups that provide us with so many options.
With a few days off: I like to play golf and swim. Nancy and I like to drive down to Seabreeze and grab a burger, and I love to see all the cars at Seabreeze Amusement Park. What an amazing place we live in.
Day-tripper: My favorite day trip is Skaneateles. I love the quaint village.
Opening scene of “Rochester: the Movie”: I think the folks from “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” (which our film office brought to Rochester) got it right. “Rochester: the Movie” would have the opening scene right on Main Street.