When I think of past events at the airpark, I usually think of fly-in-breakfasts, airshows, and open houses. But there were others gatherings that Tony would hold to promote his pride and joy with the hope of generating sales. He always came up with new ways to increase revenue, and I have piles of notes with his ideas. Here are a few from the BAP archives.
I almost passed over this single page Tony saved from an issue of the Van Dusen Flyer. But, unfortunately, there isn’t a date. So it’s probably from the early 60s.
I was unaware that BAP sold a Cessna 180 to the Episcopal Women of America, who donated it to Bishop Bill Gordon of Alaska. If you’re looking for an exciting read, check out “An Angel On His Wing” by Tay Thomas. It’s the story of Bill Gordon, aka “Alaska’s Flying Bishop.”
Tony would host annual Cessna airplane shows where they would showcase the newest model in the Quonset Hanger. In addition, he once held a Halloween party!
And to top off the list, how about a small wedding reception or New Year’s Eve party in the operations office? Yeah, that happened! And dancing in the Quonset hanger, no problem!
Well, that’s a wrap on this one, and I’ll see you in the next post!
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My father Tony first purchased a 20-acre lot located in Gardenville, New York, including two buildings, a farmhouse, and a small horse barn in 1938 at the age of 27. He converted the farmhouse into the beginning of the first operations office for his Gardenville Airport.
Tony completely redesigns the interior to include a custom front counter, new bead board, and rear office space on the left side. A central dividing wall separates the two sides and eventually supports the staircase to the future second-floor addition.
The right side has a lounge area, a showcase for sectional charts, access to the rear restrooms, and a small café. It also features a large floor heater along the central dividing wall.
Tony salvaged the usable lumber from the dilapidated horse barn from the initial purchase and built a more extended building on the office’s east side, where he painted “Gardenville Airport” on the roof. This building was often referred to as the “Horse Stable” because his first wife Maxine kept her horse in the end stall even though he used it as a storage garage and workspace.
Tony later changed the name from Gardenville Airport to Buffalo Air-park and continued to upgrade the office building. Then came the second-floor expansion in the late 1940s.
If you have any pictures of Buffalo Air-Park that you would like to share, please contact me, and I would be more than happy to add them to this website.
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