Larkin Square Blog

Phoebe Lapine shares her “Wellness Project” on June 9th

By Leslie Zemsky  
June 02, 2017

The Larkin Square Author Series is pleased to present a special lunchtime, 12:15 PM, Friday June 9th, edition of the Larkin Square Author Series with the writer Phoebe Lapine. Phoebe is the author of the book the Wellness Project: How I learned to do right by my body, without giving up my life.

Ms. Lapine is a private chef, culinary instructor, caterer, cookbook author, and the voice behind the award-winning blog Feed Me Phoebe, which documents her recipes for healthy, gluten-free comfort foods and tips for achieving a more balanced life. Lapine is a regular contributor to The Huffington Post, Food52, Serious Eats, and Food & Wine, among other publications. Feed Me Phoebe was a finalist in the 2015 Saveur Blog Awards. She lives in New York.

The Wellness Project is written with humor and smart nutrition tips as Ms. Lapine spent a year investigating ways to feel better through nutrition and lifestyle choices without giving up a bellini with brunch! The book contains 20 recipes and lots of healthy living tips she learned during her 12 month journey of discovery.

Inviting Phoebe to Buffalo and to speak in Larkin Square is a perfect fit with our focus on healthy living here in Larkin Square. From the Healthy Options program at Food Truck Tuesdays to free pickleball, hula hoops and scratch made cooking at The Filling Station, we like to incorporate healthy fun into the programming and food offerings in Larkin Square.”

The Wellness Project will be available for purchase at the event from Talking Leaves. Lunch will be available for purchase from the Filling Station and Amys Food Truck.  For more information about Phoebe Lapine, please visit


By Leslie Zemsky  
May 30, 2017

Since 2002, the Larkin Development Group (LDG) has been actively reimagining, rehabilitating and reconstructing the Larkin District, aka Larkinville, into a lively mixed use neighborhood with residential, office, manufacturing, retail and culinary focused businesses. In recent years, a dozen buildings and 2.0 million square feet of redevelopment has been completed, including the revitalization of the entire streetscape. There are now more people working in Larkinville than during the heyday of the historic Larkin Company.

A sample of the new retail and culinary businesses in the neighborhood include the Hydraulic Hearth restaurant and brewery, Flying Bison Brewing Company, Buffalo Distilling Company distillery and cocktail bar, The Filling Station restaurant and many more under development. Furthermore, our free events at Larkin Square have provided a fertile ground for entrepreneurs to start small businesses including dozens of Food Trucks.


The momentum continues in Larkinville. Here are some projects we have in the works during the next 3-4 years:

    • The Swan Street Diner  The Swan Street Diner, a 1937 fully restored Sterling Diner, rolled into Larkinville next to the Hydraulic Hearth in May, and will be open for service in September 2017.
    • Live/ Work Buildings  Plans are underway for additional live/work spaces on Seneca Street near Smith Street with the construction of a series of buildings with retail on the first floor and residential on the second and third floors, targeting Fall 2019 occupancy.
    • A New Emerson Culinary and Hospitality School
      As the Buffalo Public School Board (BPS) considers a location and developer for a new Emerson Culinary and Hospitality High School, the BPS Board is considering Larkinville as a location. As Larkinville is now an epicenter for restaurants and events, the students can benefit from working with the businesses as interns and on special projects. Between the restaurants that we operate and the relationships we have with the food trucks and other professionals in the culinary and tourism sectors, we would bring added value and mentoring to the students and teachers at the school.Our proposal also includes support from businesses with headquarters in Larkinville who are interested in mentoring students in their areas of expertise. For example, mentorships can be offered through KeyBank on financial services, while SelectOne can provide programs on job readiness.There is also a built-in market (through visitors and tenants of Larkin Square and the Larkin at Exchange Building) to support students in developing their own events and trying their hand at small business and life skills before they graduate.A new custom designed school building would allow the district to have the exact layout that works well for students and the unique programming components of the school. Our proposed 80,000 sq. ft. site in Larkinville at Smith, Exchange and Seneca Streets offers a campus opportunity on a shovel ready site, with room for future programming expansion, such as the addition of a gymnasium and food gardens. There is excellent public transportation access with direct bus lines to the east side, South Buffalo, North Buffalo, the west side and downtown. Being located on the east side and and the gateway to South Buffalo would allow the district to place a high school in an area of Buffalo that does not have other high schools. In addition to the many thousands of employees working here, Larkinville is close to Tesla Solar City, the Cobblestone District, the Central Terminal, Seneca Babcock and the Broadway Fillmore neighborhoods. There is also a built-in customer base to patronize the dining and banquet facilities.

      As a destination, our proposal includes free parking for patrons of the restaurant and banquet facilities. The design of the school includes an outdoor courtyard, allowing students to enjoy a campus atmosphere. Students and staff will also be able to take advantage of Larkin Square’s current and future amenities all year long.

    • 111 Hydraulic Street This site is located in between the proposed Emerson School and Larkin Square. This year we will be issuing an architecture competition for over 100,000 sq. ft. of retail, commercial, and residential to be built on this site with a completion by Fall 2021.
    • Public Park Space  The development of the former Ameripride site, next to Flying Bison Brewery, will include recreational amenities such as tennis, basketball, volleyball and a running track available to be enjoyed by those who live, work, visit or attend school in the neighborhood by Fall of 2020.
    • Larkin Lanes  The development and return of the former neighborhood bowling alley at the corner of Seneca and Griffin Streets.  This long abandoned building will have a new chapter as a refurbished bowling alley and eatery with a fall 2020 completion date.
    • Larkin Men’s Club This historic building, once a social hall for the Larkin Soap Company, located behind the fire station, will be redeveloped into commercial and residential space by fall 2019.

We are proud to call Larkinville home for our company headquarters. Many of our team members and employees of fellow Larkinville companies also live in the neighborhood. Entrepreneurs continue to open businesses here in a neighborhood that is both a national and local model for urban planning and redevelopment. We will be in the neighborhood for generations to come and it’s going to be an exciting few years as Larkinville and the east side continue to grow.

Lauren Belfer returns to Larkin Square, May 15th, 2017

By Leslie Zemsky  
April 28, 2017

The Larkin Square Author Series is pleased to welcome back to Larkin Square and Buffalo, Lauren Belfer. Buffalo’s beloved author has invited Frank Kowsky and Stephanie Crockatt to join her in a conversation titled, Buffalo’s Olmsted Legacy: Past, Present, and Future. The talk will include historic images of the Olmsted Parks which inspired Ms. Belfer’s writing in City of Light.

Lauren Belfer is the author of the best-selling novels City of Light, A Fierce Radiance, and and After the Fire.  City of Light is set in Buffalo. Much of the story is set in Olmsted designed parks in Niagara Falls and in Buffalo. This will be Ms. Belfer’s fifth time speaking at the Larkin Square Author Series. This will be her first talk with a thematic subject.  She has invited Olmsted scholars Frank Kowsky and Stephanie Crockatt to join the conversation. Audience members will be encouraged to ask questions as well.

Frank Kowsky is the author of The Best Planned City in the World: Olmsted, Vaux and the Buffalo Park System.  Stephanie Crockatt is Executive Director of the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy.

We are honored that Lauren Belfer will again return for a spring time talk in Larkinville. May is the most beautiful time of the year along our Olmsted designed parkways and parks, we are delighted to share some of that beauty through conversation and historic images.”

Lauren Belfer’s books will be available for purchase at the event from Talking Leaves.  A book signing will follow the talk. Information on the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy will also be shared at the event.   Beer, wine and snacks available for purchase from The Filling Station. For more information about upcoming Larkin Square events, including upcoming author talks, please visit  For more information about Lauren Belfer, visit For more information about the Olmsted Parks, visit

Mother’s Day Market Thursday, May 11, 10am – 2pm

By Leslie Zemsky  
April 28, 2017

Stop by the Larkin at Exchange Building (726 Exchange Street) on Thursday, May 11 from 10am – 2pm to shop our Mother’s Day Market. Treat a special mom in your life with over 25 vendors (complete list below)!

If you are coming to the market from outside Larkinville, you are welcome to park in the Visitor’s Lot on Exchange Street or in the Lot next to the Hydraulic Hearth.  Make a day of it and stop by the Filling Station for lunch before or after shopping! 

Vendors Include:

1801 handcrafted
Big Brother Big Sisters
Buffalo History Buff
Bunny Leighton

Burning Asphalt
Butter Block
Captured by the Moment
Designs by JJK
D&M Creations

Dragonfly Jams and Jellies
Grape Country Soaps
Gretchen Cole Jewelry
House of Olives
Janie’s Emporium
Joyful Energy Jewelry
Kitch Studios
L&J Creations

Mazurek’s Bakery
Metal Earth Jewelry

Park Edge Sweet Shoppe
Predmore Creations
Rosanna’s Jewelry and Acessories
Sarah Kieffer Designs
SugarLipz ScentSations

Sunrae Love Jewelry
Sweet and Savory Treats
That Popcorn Shack

KeyBank Live at Larkin 2017 Wednesday concert series announced!

By Leslie Zemsky  
April 26, 2017

We are pleased to announce the line-up for  Larkin Square’s original flagship event, KeyBank Live at Larkin Wednesday concert series. Attracting thousands each week throughout the summer with a wide range of sounds that showcases the diversity of the local music scene. Plus, of course, a selection of food trucks and beverages to boot. Concerts are from 5:00 PM – 8:30 PM.

Returning for a sixth season beginning June 7th KeyBank Live at Larkin will welcome a 30-band combination of established local acts, young up-and-comers, both new and returning theme nights, and as usual, a few homecomings and reunions. The 14-week series is bookended by reunions, as Opening Night features reunited reggae ensemble One World Tribe with upstart soul group Empress & the Royals, and the finale again reunites blues-soul powerhouse Dive House Union along with blues legend Jony James Band.

Weeks in between include new theme nights Blues 4 Vets, Grateful Dead Cornell ‘77 Revisited, Colored Musicians Club Centennial, Viva Elvis and Music is Art Festival Preview, along with returning favorites Latin at Larkin and South Buffalo Night. The remaining lineup offers the traditional two-band feature; all concerts will conclude with the continued Larkin tradition of a collaboration between bands. Full lineup below.

We’re excited for our sixth season of KeyBank Live at Larkin, which has for us been a perfect way to spend a summer night in Buffalo. While Tuesdays are more a food truck event with live music, Wednesdays are more a live music concert with food trucks. We appreciate the support of KeyBank and Independent Health that allows free admission and parking for all these events.

KeyBank Live at Larkin 2017 Lineup
5:00 pm – 8:30 pm

One World Tribe Empress & the Royals + Slyboots Circus

Blues 4 Vets
Peter Case
Buffalo Blues Benefit Band ft. Dave Constantino, Grace Lougen, David Michael Miller & more

John & Mary & the Valkyries + Ten Cent Howl

The Jumpers + The Irving Klaws

Latin at Larkin
La Krema + Wendell Rivera + Salsa by Sarah

Miller & the Other Sinners + Freightrain

Grateful Dead Cornell ‘77 Revisited
Workingman’s Dead *2 sets*

Colored Musicians Club Centennial
Buffalo Afrobeat Orchestra + Brotha Perry

South Buffalo Night
Brian Higgins & the Exchange Street Band
Crikwater + John Higgins

Twang Gang w/many guests *2 sets*

Viva Elvis
Party Squad + Band Named Sue

Vin DeRosa & Vitamin D + Toney Rhodes

Music is Art Fest Preview
Future Sounds of Buffalo
Hayden Fogle & the Ambassadors + DJs & dance groups

Dive House Union + Jony James Band