The Comeback Kids: Brian Buscemi
ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - Rockford native Brian Buscemi (yes, a distant relative of actor Steve Buscemi) is an entrepreneur who moved across the country several times. Now, he’s back with a wife and son in tow with him saying coming back to Rockford wasn’t initially on his radar. But he’s back and couldn’t be happier.
Brian says, “I never grew up having stigmatism that Rockford was bad.”
He grew up on the city’s west side and he’s back on that very same side now. He currently lives there with his wife Sarah and young son Vincent. But the move itself may not have happened because he says he faced criticism from friends initially about his decision to return. “Most were very adamant saying, ‘you’re crazy’ why would you come here the weather, why would you come here the crime, the government, and more,” says Brian.
Coming from the hustling and bustling city of Houston working as a ticket broker and his wife working as a restaurant manager, both of them lived a busy lifestyle and always kept change in the back of their minds. He says, “My wife and I were coming back up here on several trips and at that time, we were thinking about living in the outskirts of Houston. With this, I will be driving into Houston every day. I’m going to be that guy that’s an hour into town and an hour out and I don’t want to do that. Then she says, ‘What’s wrong with Rockford?’ You have so many people here that like you and Chicago is right there.”
That’s when he knew it was time to come back and he has Sarah to thank for getting that in his head. He even got his mother-in-law, who is from Houston originally to move to Rockford. Since moving back, he’s proved his friends and family who doubted him wrong. It all started with him getting a historic house right on the Rock River. Brian says, “I’m looking around and I’m like man the house that you can get for the price you can get it for, it’s crazy. There are so many things here to do for a family.”
Since returning, he’s changed jobs several times but has a knack for antiquing, collecting and even at times restoring old furniture. He says, “When she and I moved up here and I was looking for a business to get into, I decided to have a vintage shop. I had that for a while and still have a big collection of many things. Everybody thought I was crazy because of the area but people really don’t understand how much demand there is for rooms in Rockford.”
That’s when it came to him. He thought by taking many of the items in his collection, making his house on the Rock a home and he wants others to check it out. Because he believes in the city, he hopes to showcase the city for out of towners who stay at his new AirBNB. When asked if he regrets moving back he responded, “No, not at all.”
You can check out his AirBNB listing called, “Urban River Cottage” by clicking here. Brian tells 23 News that most weekends are booked out already, especially during the summer months.
Brian says he loves the restaurant scene, the revitalized downtown, the wakeboard park and the award-winning Rockford Park District and its parks.
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