They've been collecting tolls to cross the Grand Island Bridges since 1935 when the current north bound bridges opened. The south bound bridges opened under the auspices of the New York State Thruway in 1965, when the current toll booths went up on the southbound side heading down from the Falls.
The tolls aren't going away, but the familiar blue toll houses which have welcomed drivers to Grand Island for 60 years are going away this Thursday, May 29, 2018.
The toll booths were part of the excitement surrounding the opening of the Thruway in the 1950s, and we've collecetd some great photos of toll booths in the glory years with some great old cars passing through.
Before moving to New York City and becoming Howdy Doody's sidekick, Buffalo Bob Smith was one of Buffalo's most talented and beloved radio personalities through the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s, and was childhood best friends and frequent on air partner with Clint Buehlman.
My grandfather spoke quite often of his family's trips to the Market... and the fact that his mother often tied him to a horse hitch while she shopped! Gramps talks about the Broadway Market, Sattlers, and duck blood soup---czarnina. He grew up in Buffalo's Valley neighborhood in the 1920s and 30s.. a few blocks away from what is now "The Larkin District."
We were talking about classic Buffalo radio jingles this morning on the WECK Coffee Club, and Gail Ann had never heard the Kaufman's Rye Bread commercial-- so Tom and I sang it live for her.
Now Tom is an accomplished vocalist, but I fear my tone deaf singing may have brought him down.
Either way, the orginal is still the best-- and I dug it up in the Buffalo Stories archive to give it a listen:
You can read the story I wrote about Kaufman's Bakery here, and search for other Buffalo memories at BuffaloStories.com.
What Buffalo jingle would you love to hear again? Let me know, drop me an email at email@example.com and if we have it in the Buffalo Stories achive, maybe we'll play it on an upcoming edition of the WECK Coffee Club.
It's exciting to be bringing you the news all day on WECK-- but I'm also excited to be writing about and talking about many of the things that make Buffalo the great place that it is...
I hope you'll check out some of Buffalo's pop culture history that I've collected on my own website, http://www.buffalostories.com, and see the kinds of things you can expect in the coming days and weeks on WECK...
If there's a memory you'd like to share, or a question you have-- I'd love to hear from you.. my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
I can't wait to join in sharing some of Buffalo's great stories with Buffalo's greatest radio listeners!
I'm honored to be working with such an amazing array of talent, especially Tom and Gail on the WECK Coffee Club.
This year marks my 25th year in radio news-- but tomorrow's big snow storm marks the first time I'm going to be able to be a part of a team putting together the kind of news, information, and entertainment package that best gets us through events like a morning drive snow storm.
I'll put together the latest, complete up-to-the moment information about the storm, any traffic situations, any problems with power, and anything else that pops up-- get that information on the air for you immediately as we get it, and then-- instead of dwelling on it, we play a great song.
We don't need 12 minutes worth of interviews to say that there was a foot of snow and traffic is slow on the 33.
We'd rather spent 20 seconds giving you the basic information without embellishment or dramatics, and then we play a timeless favorite.
Being stuck on the 33 isn't half as bad when you're able to find out why you're stuck-- but then sing along with some of the greatest music of all time.
That's how we're proud to do it on Timeless Favorites, Buffalo's Very Own, WECK.
Be thankful you can't hear me singing along... I was jamming with Starbuck this morning.