It’s amazing, the number of hidden gem taverns and restaurants found on the East Side. Many of these establishments occupy corner-style neighborhood buildings, similar to the way that they would anchor blocks in the old days. Others can be founds along commercial streets such as Bailey or Jefferson.
Over the last couple of weeks, we have been spotlighting a number of videos produced by the East Side Avenues initiative. These fascinating videos have provided an invaluable insight into a wide range of projects, including Buffalo Brewing, Kerns Avenue Bowling Center, and Iroquois Brewery Development. While these aforementioned projects are relatively “new” to the East Side economic landscape, there are other stalwart businesses that have been holding down the fort for decades.
One of the businesses that has been making a go of it since 1969 is Mike’s Lounge on Jefferson. In the video, I found it fascinating that current business owner and musician Thomas Fluker drew inspiration from Buffalo’s famed Pine Grill. Today, Mike’s Lounge is a place for local musicians to hone their craft, just like back in the days when Pine Grill was a hotbed for iconic jazz musicians.
Mike’s Lounge is the beneficiary of funding from East Side Avenue’s East Side Commercial District program. Citizens Alliance and the Black Chamber of Commerce helped Fluker to apply for the funding, which is being allocated to remodeling the bathrooms, fixing the AC, facade beautification improvements, and a new patio.
As we have heard from other recipients of grant funding (New York State’s economic development investment plan) on the East Side, this is the first time that many of these businesses have been provided access to these types of financial aid resources.
In the end, all of Buffalo will benefit from these strategic investments into the city’s East Side.
Mike’s Lounge | 1343 Jefferson Ave, Buffalo, NY 14208 | (716) 883-1344 | Facebook