President Obama was in Rochester on Thursday, having lunch and talking to people at Magnolia's Deli and Cafe on Park Avenue.
He left the Buffalo area around 12:10 p.m. after giving a speech at the University at Buffalo on higher education. He then headed down the Thruway and got off the Thruway with his motorcade at the Le Roy exit just before 1 o'clock.
His motorcade continued into downtown Rochester over the Frederick Douglass-Susan B anthony Bridge where he exited 490 at Culver Road and ended up in Park Avenue neighborhood for lunch.
According to the White House, the motorcade stopped at Magnolia's Deli and Cafe in Rochester around 1:30 p.m. The president stopped to shake hands and chat with people having lunch at the sidewalk tables.
Among them was lawyer Paul MacAuley, 66, of Rochester, who was finishing his cheesecake and stood to shake Obama's hand.
Maccauley said, "Where's Michelle?"
"Michelle couldn't come," the president responded. "She's got too many things going on, including a new dog."
Obama also stopped to pose for a picture with Rubi Platt, an 11-year-old in town visiting from Orange County, Calif.
"It was really, really, really cool," she said of meeting President Obama.
This is a picture taken by Rachel Studley inside Magnolia's, where the president stopped for lunch.
It looks like the president took Senator Charles Schumer's advice. He urged him to stop in Rochester and released a statement saying:
"I am glad the President stopped in Rochester, because as the home of some of New York’s premier colleges and universities, it is a great backdrop for his message of college affordability and the necessity of a good college education for middle-class job opportunities. I’m glad he heeded my advice to visit Rochester, which I told him is a prime example of a community that is effectively employing its higher education institutions to reinvent and grow its economy with new high-tech jobs and advanced manufacturing.”
Magnolia's is a family owned and operated business since 2003. During lunch, Obama and Education Secretary Arne Duncan joined several young people for a brief discussion.
Seated at the table with Obama were Doug Brady, Pamela Brady, Mary Ellen Gleason, Evalyn Gleason, Brandon McDonald, Peter Manuelpillai and Wesline Manuelpillai.
Rochester Mayor Tom Richards greeted the president at Magnolia's and said he got about 30 minutes notice from police. In the days leading up to the president's visit, Richards had talked about federal programs getting scaled back or the subject of pitched budget battles in Washington that were paying big dividends here in the city. Those programs range from Community Development Block Grants to money for nutrition initiatives.
"I told the president that some of these programs they are giving him a hard time on work here," Richards said, "and (to) hang in there."
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