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Elevator Alley Kayak coming to The Barrel Factory in Buffalo’s Old First Ward

Just in time for spring, a new kayak rental company is coming to the Old First Ward. The company is joining a group of other fun-loving start-ups at The Barrel Factory. Situated in close proximity to the Buffalo River, Elevator Alley Kayak (EAK) will offer visitors and “expeditionists” a chance to see Elevator Alley and other historic structures from the water, which is an unforgettable experience. The team at EAK will specialize in “history* and nature tours with trained guides, kayaking lessons, as well as kayak, canoe, and stand-up paddle board and accessory rentals and sales.”

This is a great addition to the line-up that is already in place at The Barrel Factory – Lakeward Spirits, and Queen City Malting (see why). Once open, the company will drum up a ton of added activity for the Buffalo River and Mutual Riverfront Park and Boat Launch. “Elevator Alley Kayak is another very exciting addition to The Barrel Factory, and helps us to achieve our vision for the rebirth of our building and for the increasing appreciation of Buffalo’s historic Old First Ward and the legendary Buffalo River,” said Steve Bystran, managing member of Lazarus Properties, which is redeveloping the historic factory building.


Elizabeth Bragg and Jason Mendola are co-owners of Elevator Alley Kayak. Both are WNY natives who see the potential in getting more people out on the water, while learning about the history of the Old First Ward and the Buffalo River. “If you have a kayak already, we will have accessories including life-jackets, paddles, dry-bags and other essentials for a great day of fun and exploring history and nature on the water,” Jason Mendola stated.

There is no doubt that The Old First Ward will be hopping this summer. Even City of Night will be sidestepping this way for the first time since the event’s inception. Adding to the mix of the Ohio Street improvements and the catering facility at Festival Park, this new kayak operation will not only look great when it is up and operational, it will also be a major draw to the area for outdoor enthusiasts.

More information on The Barrel Factory is available on the building’s web site  and its Facebook page

Elevator Alley Kayak can be found at and  Twitter and Instagram handle is @ElevatorAlley.  For more information, you can email

*Provided by Explore Buffalo



Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

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