The summer of 2016 is going to be a big one for Buffalo River Fest Park. After a ribbon cutting is held in May, the community will be able to enjoy all of the benefits of the new lodge project. Not only will the Lodge be available for community events, a restaurant component will also be part of the mix. To start, the Lodge will be open for dinners on Fridays, and lunch and brunch Wednesday through Sunday. There is seating for 120 indoors, and when combined with outdoor event staging, the party/event size is virtually limitless.
“Progress begets progress but it always takes a fearless outlier to get the ball rolling. Peg Overdorf has been a true believer in the Buffalo River and its surrounding neighborhoods, long before others could see the opportunity,” said Congressman Brian Higgins, who recently viewed the building along with Valley Community Association Executive Director Peg Overdorf. “Over the last decade millions in federal funding have been invested in the clean-up of the Buffalo River and surrounding infrastructure to make the River enjoyable and accessible. The lodge is the latest project building on the progress we’ve created and giving the public another great destination along the Buffalo River.”
The Lodge is located at 249 Ohio Street in a three acre park along the Buffalo River. Other amenities at the park include a band shell, picnic areas, a boardwalk, landscaping, a pergola, and public docks. There is also connectivity with other waterfront destinations thanks to recently completed bike trails.
“The completed lodge will offer food, refreshments, bathrooms and fantastic views of the Buffalo River for local residents and the wider Western New York community to enjoy,” said Overdorf. “We look forward to being open for business this May.”
As of late, Buffalo has been tasked with cleaning up the river, which was once declared biologically dead. For ten years, there has been a concerted effort to dredge/clean the slow moving waterway, and those efforts are still underway today.
Over the last 10 years, the federal government, through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and other programs has invested $72.8 million in and around the Buffalo River. An additional $34.6 million in support has come from state and local governments, $27.2 million of which was provided through the 2005 federal relicensing settlement with the New York Power Authority.
The Lodge is a critical feature that will help to draw people to the Old First Ward – an area of the city that continues to impress. Visitors can spend an entire day visiting breweries and restaurants, kayaking, biking, and exploring the historic elements that make this stretch of the waterfront so unique. The addition of the Lodge is just another reason to visit the Old First Ward, as it will become a community oriented focal point for years to come.
For more information on Buffalo River Fest Park, contact the lodge at: firstname.lastname@example.org.