Bird Island Grill Opens
Broderick Park has taken another step in the right direction thanks to Steve Tait, a former construction worker. When Steve found out that a project that he was scheduled to work on, was stopped by people who lived in the neighborhood, he decided to take an entirely new direction in life. "My wife Sherri and I would bring the kids down to walk out on Bird Island Pier," Steve told me. "It was frustrating that there were no open bathrooms and no place to grab food. So I wrote a letter to the Parks Commissioner and asked him what it would take to get the old cafe open. He said that I would have to submit an application and then wait to see who would win the bid. I think I was the only person who submitted a bid."
Steve, a guy who didn't know a heck of a lot about the food business, had just signed himself up for a crash course titled Restaurant Operation 101. It was then that he called his buddy James Miller who had spent five years in the food-operating world. The two began to put a plan together to bring great grilled food to Broderick Park. "But before that, we needed to fix the place up," Steve continued. "We cleaned and painted the inside and then began to straighten up the grounds. At some point, after I get my head above water, I'm going to see about getting the roof fixed at the picnic pavilion... the roof is in pretty bad shape."
Despite the fact that the weather has not cooperated as of yet, Steve is convinced that he is on to something good. The first day of business (two weeks ago) the stand brought in $8. "I'm looking at this time period as a way to get my feet wet," he said. "This past weekend we had 100 item sales per day. Now it's word of mouth... we have great food here. We serve a black angus burger and Sahlen's hotdogs. We named a burger after the biggest fish (see photo of Steve holding photo) caught as of yet... it's called the Lunker Burger. The guy who caught that fish comes and orders a Lunker Burger every day before he goes fishing. We also have nachos... and Sherri has been known to make homemade cookies and macaroni salad. As business picks up we'll continue to introduce new items to the menu... like soft pretzels, soft serve ice cream and veggie burgers. The people who come to Broderick Park have been great... it's a mixed crowd of fishermen and other people who just enjoy the water." Coming up on June 1st, a large fishing derby will be hosted at the park. For a $10 admission the fishermen will get a breakfast and a full day of fishing (with prizes). The Bird Island Grill is located at the end of West Ferry (just past Niagara Street - West Ferry turns into Robert Rich Way).
If you want to find out more about Bird Island Grill or the fishing derby, call 716.885.1357 Bottom photo: Roland Davis tries out the hotdog and fries just this morning