Spotlight Interview: Maria Genero – Yes, she’s as Sweet as you Think!

May 12, 2017

Written By

Mary Friona Celani

Without a doubt, Maria Genero is one of my favorite people! She was my confidant, voice of reason, and secret-keeper when we worked together. My fellow ‘Falls Girl”. She is about as down to earth as they come, despite basically being a movie star, super model and overall fabulous broadcaster all in one.

She’s one of the people I miss most from my days at Channel Two!

So, I asked her to catch us all up on what she’s been up to. She talks about her love for animals, her time on a movie set, and of course, what makes her Totally Buffalo. I also asked her some fun questions and in typical Maria fashion, she evaded a few. 🙂

We still love her.

Here’s our Spotlight on Maria Genero.


Q: How are you? What’s the latest in your life? Dating? ?

A: Doing great…Dating??? No, found I was allergic to it 😉


Q: Tell us one thing that people may not know about you? Come on…..  

A: Hmm… Get back to you on that one 😉

Q: You’ve been in television broadcasting for a while – what are some of changes you have seen?

A: Technology Mary, technology has changed everything in every business especially television.  And like everything in life there is good and bad with change. So many jobs have been eliminated due to the new technology, that’s the bad, heck, you can produce, report and anchor a newscast from your home now. But the good is the instant access you now have to deliver information. When I started in television you had an a.p. wire and a typewriter (ha really dating myself now)  So obviously, things have changed dramatically.

Q: You’re basically a movie star!   What was it like to film Striptease and Evil Never Dies? Any good stories?

A: Striptease??? “Holy Shit!”  ha  (that was my line  in that movie)  Yeah, that was a fun thing to do.  Burt Reynolds couldn’t have been nicer, down to earth and just nice.  But I have to tell you Mary, for anyone who thinks they want to go to Hollywood and work in the movies, know this.. The amount of time you have to sit and wait, and wait and wait is amazing.  That tiny little scene ended up being 3 days!  Things on a movie set move very slowly, I now understand why so many actors sometimes get into “trouble” while on the set.   Way too much idle time.  But glad I experienced it.

Q: What do you think about Buffalo’s resurgence? Maybe the Falls will follow their lead? 

A: Now, wouldn’t that be nice!  Being born and raised in Niagara Falls, It bothers me to see where the city is now because I can remember when it was vibrant and healthy.   But the one thing Niagara Falls has that can NEVER be taken away, is the Falls itself. And as long as that beautiful, world famous waterfall is in that city, there is hope.

Q: You left the business for a while and came back – did you miss it?

A: Yes, I did…and then again I didn’t.  I love broadcasting, I  just celebrated my 30 year anniversary of being in television.  30 years!!!! OMG~  What the heck!!!   ha!  But there are other things in my life that I am passionate about, so when I took a break, I started working in a areas I have always admired, jewelry repair and design was one and really enjoyed that. I also got my license in real estate,  I just think it’s best to have a few interests and skills handy, cause you never know what life is going to throw at you.

Q: Tell us a bit about your time in LA and Miami. Which did you like better?  Any epic stories?

A: I was not a big fan of LA, that whole scene just didn’t fit with me.  Miami however, that was another story.  I LOVED Miami, I loved the weather, (the hotter the better)   I loved the people of Miami, the whole lifestyle appealed to me.  Miami was wonderful, it was one big party until  Hurricane Andrew… August 24 1992, then everything changed.   Hurricane Andrew hit and I have never seen, nor do I ever want to see, anything like that again.  I always thought it would be exciting and fascinating to experience a hurricane, and while it was, it was also the scariest event I have ever lived through.  Wow, wow, wow, not only was that a hurricane, but a cat. 5 hurricane.  It devastated the area, everything was gone, everything changed, it actually was like a bomb went off.  And the slow, slow recovery after a  storm of that magnitude was just so depressing.  A true depression fell over that whole city, it was a sobering experience.  I was able to fly over S. Miami in a helicopter after the storm, and you couldn’t recognize it.  Everything was gone, everything!  I have never seen anything like that, nor do I ever want to see it again.  That was an epic experience with an epic storm.

Q: You are beloved here in WNY and basically a legend in Niagara Falls – people adore you – how does that make you feel?

A: Awh, how nice…Well if that’s so, it truly makes me feel good.  But you know what…The other day someone came up to me and said, Hey, aren’t you Maria?  I like you on the weather, but what I really like about you is how you are trying to help animals.  Now, THAT Mary, that made me feel GREAT!

Q: I know you’re passionate about animals – when did that start and why?

A: Pretty much the day I was born, I have ALWAYS had a love for  animals, not only domestic animals but ALL animals.  I would say it was about 10 years ago that I  became more engaged in animal rights and animal welfare.   After learning the truth about our food industry I  decided to become vegetarian, I also became more involved in working with area rescue groups. It so bothers me to see what we are doing to our world and our environment.  We ALL have a right to be here on this earth. Animal welfare and the environment is a true passion of mine, and one I hope I can become even more involved in.
I truly can see me working with animals one day when my career in broadcasting is over.  One day John Beard and I were talking about where we would be in about 10 years.  I said, I think you will find me shoveling poo at the zoo.  😉

Q: I know family is very important to you – has that always been the case?

A: Nope…  hahaha only kidding  Of course I love my family, they are the reason I moved back to Buffalo

Q: What makes you Totally Buffalo?

A: Refer to question above.  Born,  raised and will always be totally Buffalo, (okay WNY)   it’ my blood.

You can find Maria doing weather on the weekend Daybreak shows on Channel Two where she sits alongside the fabulous, Heather Ly! 


About Me

Welcome to Totally Buffalo! My name is Mary Friona-Celani and I am the creator of this site! After spending 20 years in the Buffalo media, I moved on to focus on my beautiful family. Now, the time has come for a new project. I was ready for something new. Something mine.
I am born and raised in WNY and my pride runs deep. My husband, Scott and I are very happy to be raising our four daughters here.






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    What a great girl and wonderful interview. Enjoyed reading about my favorite tv personality. Both you girls are Buffalo

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    Beautiful interview with Maria . Were you also born in the Falls ?

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    Loved this interview with Maria – I miss seeing her daily on TV – but still get to enjoy her on the weekends along with Heather – great duo – Also love her adoration for animals – I totally care for them as well – hey maybe we can shovel poo at the zoo in a few years together – Thank You Mary for a neat Totally Buffalo

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    Maria just eeks with goodness. That is why she is in the hearts of many. I am retired but working 4 retirement jobs , all of which I love. If you aren’t having fun, there is no point doing it . My most important job is raising my granddaughter , Olivia. The most important thing I cherish and want for her , is to be kind. Maria is a great role model.

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    Great interview…..What a gorgeous Lady…..I love that she loves animals….She is so detailed in her forecasts….Best weather person in WNY!

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    Wonderful Interview…Mary …you selected the right person… I always love seeing Maria on the weather and she makes you feel all warm and fuzzy insidw when she forecasts the weather. I love her for being a animal activist. Thats a wonderful way to be in this world. There needs to be more Marias in this wny. PS Great job Mary

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    Two cool chicks. You both are what make Buffalo great.

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    I really enjoyed the interview you had with Maria. She’s a sweetheart and I’m a big Maria fan.

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    Great stuff, Mary! And my 2 favorites…you and Maria.. both class acts. I am now hooked on Totally Buffalo….and that is a good addiction. Keep up the great work!

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    Hi Mary, Your smiling face is missed on tv, but so glad you are happy and doing things you want. Love your interview with Maria! She and you are both such classy ladies. Hope to see more great interviews. Have a great day!

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    That was a very nice story and interview Mary !

  12. Mary Friona

    Thank you so much!!!!!

  13. Mary Friona

    Thank you so much!!!!

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    I have had a crush on Maria since the first time I saw her. My wife always tells me “Your girlfriend is on!”
    As someone involved with animal rescue, I completely understand her passion and commitment. She is truly an advocate for those without a voice. I hope to meet her someday, and hopefully not make a fool of myself.

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    LOVE the story. Thank you❤️

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    I so agree with previous comments- I love the two of you- you both bring the down to earth factor into our media and that makes me a huge fan – and so applaud Maria for being such an animal advocate ??????

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    Mary, Thank you so much for doing this interview. Maria, is a gem. I would like to share with you a story. But not here. I would like to send you an email on it. Maria, is a very special giving person. She is an an example, of a person in the business that has kept the business in perspective. She didn’t let the Tv personality become bigger than Maria, the regular person. The story I have, you should know. Because, it is truly not what a lot of people in media would do. Maria Genero, is a gift to all of us.

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    I agree with you Patty and with all the other wonderful comments. I love your new project Mary! I met Mary when my Son was at Debbie Bello’s home for an interview about Bello Studio vocalists going to American Idol! I miss those days of watching all the stories of new gagets! I started a FB conversation with Maria a few years ago and I still keep in touch! I love both you extraordinary women!

  19. Mary Friona

    Thank you so much!!!!! 🙂

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    What a wonderful interview, Mary! Maria is such a credit to WNY and to Channel 2!! A lady of class and distinction.

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    Mary a Niagara Falls girl too! Maria’s great and comes from a great family who like Maria, are very well respected here in the Falls!

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    Love Maria! I too am involved with animals and she is a true inspiration. Animals can t talk (verbally lol) but Maria can! Thank you for this awesome interview!

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    Mary enjoyed the piece on Maria;you are both gems.I wish there were more for real people like the both of you.All the best to you, and your family.

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    I remember when you used to come to the Ice Pavilion in the falls for the morning skating club.

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    I just love Maria. She is very pretty, so down to earth and has such a warm heart. I enjoy watching her give the weather but I really love when she’s with the animals up for adoption on the weekends with Heather. You can just see the love she has for each and everyone of them. She’s the Best at Channel 2. I only watch the station when I know she’ll be on. She’s a great asset to WNY and all the animals.

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    Love this interview and your blog. I look forward to more interviews with WNY people

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