Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

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TheLastBabyBoomer
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Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by TheLastBabyBoomer » 28 Jul 2012 19:38

Does anyone know where I may find some history of this store? It opened on Main & Transit Roads in about 1970. I am interested in finding any pictures or old sale ads. My father managed this store for many years, and I have lost touch since I moved to Arizona. Any information would be very much appreciated. Park Edge was my childhood.

Transit Road
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by Transit Road » 01 Aug 2012 06:10

It is very difficult to find any information on the Clarence Mall Park Edge Supermarket and it is even more difficult to find any pictures of the store. I know I have tried to find any information on the store for years, but without much luck.

My family and I have have many happy memories of this store.

Here is a little bit of background on my story - my family is from South Buffalo and we lived near the original Park Edge Supermarket on McKinley Parkway near Abbott Road. Since both the Park Edge (built as a conventional supermarket) and an Acme (1960's A-Frame) Supermarket were located within three blocks from our house, most trips to the supermarket were done on foot. At the time, my family only had one car to use for commuting to work, shopping, errand running, and any other trip outside of our neighborhood.

When my family moved from South Buffalo to suburban Williamsville, the desire to shop at Park Edge was a no-brainier. The store was new, modern, and fresh, while at the same time the store was very familiar. Since the store was less than two miles from our house, we went there often.

The store was located next to Grant City (with the Bradford Room Restaurant) in a strip shopping center with a White Cross Drug Store (later Rite-Aid), Brennan's Bowery Bar, a Dunlop Tire Store, Marine Midland Bank (later a Liquor store), some smaller stores that I cannot place at thee moment, and on the corner of Main St & Transit Road were an ARCO gas station (with what looked like the world's largest ARCO sign on poles next to and above the gas station), plus a Kentucky Fried Chicken location. Several years after the Clarence "Mall" was built Child World opened a store next to the Bradford Room and M&T Bank built a small office building in the parking lot. The parking lot seemed huge at the time. In fact, when the Dodge dealer across the street need to renovate their facility, they would park their new cars on the Clarence Mall lot. Also, to an 8-year old, the Grant City store looked like the facade went all the way up to the sky. Looking at some pictures taken during the last renovation of the plaza, everything looked much smaller. The plaza sits right next to the Eastern Hills Mall. Later, Office Depot, Five Star Bank, and another HSBC/M&T Bank office building were built in the parking lot of the plaza.

The Park Edge Supermarket at the Clarence Mall was a mid-1960's era styled modern store that had large rectangular amber colored panes that surrounded the white rectangular center panel that contained the store's name in black lettering. All of the panels were across the front top facade of the store. A white border surrounded all of the other panels. It was probably about a 30,000 square foot store. As you walked in through the main doors which were on the left side of the building, you were entering the produce department with signs that were small chalkboards with hand written item descriptions and pricing. It always seemed like the signs were done in the writing styles of the 1920's - 1940's. On the back wall were large cutouts of cows, fish, and poultry above the Meat section. In the middle of the store were general merchandise aisles, while on the right hand side of the store was the Deli and one side of the aisle and the Dairy section on the other. On the front wall were Schroeder's Bakery and the registers. There was also another Exit door between the Deli and the Bakery.. There was a separate cash register at this exit that sold the then new New York State Lottery tickets. The store always seemed as if it was the best of both worlds - a cross between a family owned grocery store and a larger chain of stores

When we shopped at the Park Edge, my brother and I would marvel at the old-fashioned pickle barrel, where you pick you own pickle(s) out of the barrel. We would also think it was a big deal that we would get lunch meat or cheese samples from the Deli or a free cookie from the bakery. I can also remember being yelled at by a male customer for racing a shopping cart around the store with my brother inside the basket. When I complained to my mother about getting yelled at by a stranger, she asked if we were really running around the store with the shopping cart and when told we were, she said that man was right to yell at us !

In later years, the Clarence Mall Park Edge became a Bells Supermarket (With late 70's/early 80's style graphics) then Burlington Coat Factory, and is now Bed, Bath & Beyond. The Clarence Mall is now The Shops at Main/Transit. It would be interesting to see if the Bed, Bath, & Beyond store incorporates any part of the Park Edge location. Since my family has long since moved from the area (but we go back every once in a while to visit and look at all of the old familiar haunts), I am not sure if the old Park Edge building is still there or if it is new construction. Hopefully, there are elements of the original building.

TheLastBabyBoomer
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by TheLastBabyBoomer » 28 Nov 2012 13:06

I am sorry that I haven't replied sooner. Thank you for the walk down memory lane. I remember all of those things. I remember Grant's & eating at the Bradford Room restaurant with my mom and dad. I used to go to work with dad on Sunday's when I was about 12-14 years old. I helped out in the Deli, watered the plants in the floral department, "faced the shelves" changed the prices of sale products, and posted the new sale ads at the front window. I even got to wear one of those red and white candy stripped smock jackets that the cashiers wore. Dad ran the store and it seemed like he knew all of his customers by name. Sometimes he would pick out a nice steak in the meat department and he would cook it for us in the managers office in an electric frying pan. The managers office was a small elevated box like room with 4 or 5 foot walls and an open top located next to the express check out exit that led outside to Brennan's bar. Brennan's was a favorite stop for my dad, as well as my family. We still visits Brennan's whenever we go home.

I can remember watching the store being built, or at least being set up. Dad was there while they assembled the shelving and installed the freezer cases. We used to drive over to see the progress before it opened. I remember the windows being coted with a white wax while it was under construction. My uncle Steve managed the McKinnley Park store ... aunt Marie managed Park Edge Liquor, uncle Buddy worked for Park Edge, as well as uncle Ted and my brothers in Flickengers warehouse, so Park Edge was like the family business even though the Benetovich family owned the stores. I remember Harvey Benetovich and another younger brother who's name escapes me.

I loved the pickle barrel too. Dad actually brought a barrel home and made pickles in the basement one year. He was always given things from the different salemen to bring home especially around the holidays. I had (and still have) my Charley the Tuna wristwatch, I had a La Choy rickshaw, the Apollo Astronaut dolls, & Little Debbie dolls. All would have all been collectors items by now. We usually also got any display items, once the display came down.

In later years dad left Park Edge around 1978, after a demotion to assistant manager when a younger store manager was brought in. (Possibly the beginning of the downfall.) In 1981 we moved to Phoenix and Park Edge has been history ever since. Thank you again for all of your information. If you ever find any old information such as sale ads or pictures please keep me in mind. I have been in Arizona for over 30 years and I still run into people who "loved" Park Edge. They say that there was & still is no other store that comes close to the experiance. It is sad that they didn't stick around and become the like a Wegman's, Fry's, or a Safeway.

Have a wonderful Holiday season, and thank you again.

Deborah

Transit Road
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by Transit Road » 29 Apr 2013 04:16

TheLastBabyBoomer wrote:I Dad ran the store and it seemed like he knew all of his customers by name. Sometimes he would pick out a nice steak in the meat department and he would cook it for us in the managers office in an electric frying pan. The managers office was a small elevated box like room with 4 or 5 foot walls and an open top located next to the express check out exit that led outside to Brennan's bar. Brennan's was a favorite stop for my dad, as well as my family. We still visits Brennan's whenever we go home.
I do remember smelling a steak cooking in that area. :>)

Also, a few years ago I met Tim Russert at the local Barnes & Noble location for a book signing in suburban Baltimore, MD. As he was signing a copy of the book that was to be a gift for my older brother, (they had both attended Canisuis High School at about the same time and both had lived within walking distance in the South Buffalo area), I mentioned the fact that we lived about 2 blocks away from the Park Edge Supermarket. Tim had a big smile on his face when he heard this. He knew the store well.

When did the Transit Road store open?

TheLastBabyBoomer
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by TheLastBabyBoomer » 29 Apr 2013 12:05

I am really not certain exactly when it opened, I was a child. Possibly between 1966-1968 ish .... I wasn't quite in school yet. It was also prior to the Eastern Hills Mall being built of course. I wish that I could find more history on Park Edge but it remains a mystery. If you should ever find an old ad or anything from the newspaper I hope that you will pass it along. Thank you for sharing your Park Edge memories with me.

Noquarter
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by Noquarter » 01 May 2013 23:10

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Last edited by Noquarter on 23 Aug 2014 22:33, edited 1 time in total.

Transit Road
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by Transit Road » 02 May 2013 06:30

The person named Transit has a vivid memory & it brought me right back there.We were by Transit & Maple,closer to Sheridan actually in Dana Heights.
Wow, that is amazing ! You are from the same neighborhood as I am, plus you are about the same age as I am. (TheLastBabyBoomer is also about the same age also !) We lived on Seabrook Drive.

The rounded / dome shape Park Edge sounds like the location on Sheridan Dr. and Delaware Ave., just west of Niagara Falls Boulevard in Tonawanda/Kenmore, NY.

Yes, everything seemed larger than life back then. The area was being developed, Stores, homes, and schools were popping up everywhere. The 14221 zip code was the area everyone wanted to move to from what I hear. My relatives and our neighbors in South Buffalo thought Williamsville and Clarence were so far out in the country - in reality it was only about 15 miles away.

The store at Georgetown Plaza was a Super Duper and across the street was Loblaws (later it was The Pop Shoppe).

Yes, I remember the Wehrle Drive-In - I liked the moving lights on the marquee. Was Games Galore the arcade at Eastern Hill Mall?

Also, here are two links that you may find interesting: http://www.staffannouncer.com/ (Everything you wanted to know about Buffalo) and http://www.staffannouncer.com/retail.htm (information about Buffalo retailing)

Noquarter
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by Noquarter » 03 Jun 2013 21:53

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Last edited by Noquarter on 23 Aug 2014 22:35, edited 1 time in total.

Transit Road
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by Transit Road » 10 Aug 2013 19:07

Hmmmmm.......I have a feeling I may know Noquarter. Sound like you had delivered papers to our house on Seabrook Drive between Third and Fifths Streets. The names that you mentioned are familiar especially K. Lubkowski (Kevin or Kathy?)

I remember watching the progress of the 7-Eleven / Corner Store / Niagara Milk Store as it was being built.

Yes, Crystal Beach Amusement Park is in the memories of many people that grew up in Western New York.

sarge
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by sarge » 28 Dec 2016 17:21

Sorry I haven't responded sooner, but I've just joined. To the person who was inquiring about pictures of the Clarence Mall Park Edge Store, I have LOTS, mostly 35mm slides, from the front of the store at night (I used it for a Christmas Card one year), inside while standing on the forklift near the ceiling, the original "Deli Crew", Jerry K (produce manager), some from Easter (1975?), Dairy/Frozen Christmas decorations, and from the "remodel" when it changed to "Bells" (that was our 'death blow'

If you would like to contact me, my e-mail is fanman14026@gmail.com (Jerry Lester) worked from the grand opening 'till late 1969, and returned in 1972 after my tour of duty in Vietnam.

Transit Road
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Re: Park Edge Supermarket Clarence New York

Post by Transit Road » 02 Jan 2017 04:07

Here is an ad for the 1966 Grand Opening of the Parke Edge Super Market in Clarence, NY
Attachments
Park Edge Clarence Mall Opening.jpg

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