--WEDNESDAY - 1/19/22 - ASBURY TAKE-OUT MEAL - $12 - Call 585-237-5262 -- Stay in Your Car for Pickup -- Seared Stuffed Chicken With Cracker Crumb Stuffing, Twice Baked Potato, Mixed Veggies, Dinner Roll, Mixed Berry Cobbler (Eat-In also open).
--FIRST MEETING OF THE SLI TRUSTEES IN 2022 will be the third Saturday in April--the 24th, 10 am, location TBA.

Saturday, August 22, 2020

U.S. Post Office Remains in the Headlines, Stimulating Thoughts
of Our Own Silver Lake Post Office



Whenever stories of the U.S. Post Office come on the TV, radio, or computer, a flood of memories and of storied history obsesses my mind and I am once again thrilled by one of the oldest institutions of our country--as a matter of fact--older than our country. The original Post Master General was Benjamin Franklin, from whose daughter our family evolved. Abraham Lincoln also served as a Post Master General for a while. Both knew the value of running it as the service it was intended to be verses a business.

Equally important to me was my grandfather Ed's total career which he spent as a clerk in Postal Station D of South Buffalo, just a short walk from my great grandfather August's Dry Goods Store (no longer there--established in 1884 and sold in 1944) on Seneca St. at the Swan and Emslie Sts. intersection. Today, my granddaughter delivers mail near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

When I was SLI Treasurer, I and other Institute-related folks were present for the meeting in Koinonia a number of years back where the subject was our Silver Lake Post Office. It was a trying experience because the people representing the District Post Office were not giving us much reason for hope. It seemed like the prospects for being broken up into two rural routes--one out of Perry and one out of Castile would most likely be our fate--utilizing the two zip codes: one for Perry (14530) and the other for Castile (14427). 

One or two banks of outdoor postal boxes would have to be installed and accessible to Perry Avenue (the only public road through the Institute). As questions were raised, the post office representatives offered an alternative to the rural route concept. They suggested that a bank of post office boxes on the south end wall of the post office lobby in Perry be reserved for the former customers of the Silver Lake Post Office and labeled as such above the reserved boxes along with the old zip code designation of 14549. 

They obviously thought that our beloved 14549 would be such a powerful draw that we would easily accept the concept of running to the Perry Post Office every time we wanted to pick up mail, deposit mail, send a package, or purchase a stamp. Although we gave it serious consideration we also talked about the elderly and those who had neither cars nor the ability nor desire to walk or drive that far and back, particularly in bad weather.

At the time we had a full time office at Silver Lake and we were indeed spoiled for the amount of mail and limited purchases. So a third concept was explained to us: a part time post office, perhaps 2 or 3 hours a day and a willingness to make a serious attempt at increasing our local post office's sales of products--particularly postage and number of pieces mailed. 

We were told that a big part of the decision would be based on how much money was taken in and how many mailable items were sent through our PO. These would obviously help to cover the expenses of the building and its employees which included the truck and driver that had to stop here each day. We were reminded that there was no income attributable to the rental of mail boxes which were offered free because of no house to house delivery.

As you know the decision was made by the higher-ups to go with the part time post office with the community's willingness to attempt to increase our post office's sales of products. Amazingly, as time has passed, many found it easy to forget the second part of the verbal agreement, and this is the main reason for my writing today.

This is a reminder that we best not wait for another run at closing our post office. It's time now to talk about our post office's future because the current part-time decision was not given the designation of "permanent." It was designated a trial period to see how the financial balance sheets look after a few years. I am told that we do not receive any reports as to how our post office is doing--not once in a while, not any at all. Its fate for all practical purposes is currently in our hands.

Do we buy our Christmas Card postage at Silver Lake before returning to our homes? We should. Our post office desperately needs our business if we hope to prove its value to them. Our annual tax bills are sent with Silver Lake postage as are the Waterfront and Marina leases. The return payments should be made with Silver Lake postage. Any packages that could be brought and mailed from our local post office would also help to increase its sales. Check out other products here which might be useful to you and helpful to our PO.

We must remind ourselves that the District Post Office pays a hefty rent for use of our little post office building, as it does to keep the heat, lights, and phone lines on every day for building safety, package safety, and electronics equipment safety, not to mention our comfort and convenience when picking up mail or purchasing postal products. Our discussions should prepare us for another postal meeting which might require us to have an alternative in mind for placing the post office in a different building--one in which the Institute owns and one for which the District Post Office would not have to pay rent or utilities. Is our PO worth that much to us?

Once upon a time, the question of whether to purchase the current post office building came up. A one-man decision was made that the owner wanted "too much." It was never discussed and I think we might agree that what one person considers "too much" another person may not. Or would we consider converting Stoody Hall? Who knows--we haven't talked about it. Or would we consider placing the post office in the basement of Epworth Hall? Who knows--we haven't discussed it even on a concept level.

We have done very well "getting ahead of the game" when it comes to the paving of roads by having an annual amount in the budget for maintenance. Why not "get ahead of the game" by at least talking, discussing, or even just exchanging dreams about a post office alternative for the future--before the future imposes its will on us.

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Walter D. “Pete” Mairs, 81, died peacefully on July 23, 2021. Born in Avon, N.Y., on Sept. 3, 1939, Pete was a longtime resident of Geneva, N.Y., and these past many years in Buffalo, N.Y., as well as his beloved Silver Lake. Pete is survived by his wife, Linda Bergstrom Mairs, a loving and true companion; children, Mimi C. Mairs, Jonathan B. Mairs; sisters, June Huff, Helen Dole; brother, Thomas Mairs; stepchildren, Daniel Brinkworth, Jennie Ramsey; sister-in-law, Anne Bergstrom, eight beautiful grandchildren, and nieces and nephews. A service and celebration of life is planned for the fall when all can share the joy of Pete’s life together. Arrangements by Stephenson – Dougherty Funeral Home, Avon, N.Y.

Editor's Note: It was a privilege knowing and working with Pete Mairs during his presidency of the Silver Lake Institute. He was a kind and gentle man, but also firm in his leadership. I served as Treasurer and Chaplain of SLI during those years and I could always depend on Pete's presence in the worship service. He was a man of faith and a gem of a human being. May he rest in God's care.


Gerald C. Sahrle, 80, of Perry, passed away on Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester. He was born on Oct. 10, 1941, in Wayland, N.Y., to the late Charles A. and Helen I. (Blowers) Sahrle. Gerry was a line foreman for 32 1/2 years for NYSE&G, working out of the Perry and Hamburg locations, and was a Town of Perry Councilman. He was a member of the Free and Accepted Masons of the Constellation Lodge -404 in Perry. He was an avid fisherman, hunter and woodworker. He is survived by his wife, Valary A. (Conley) Sahrle; 1 son, Gerald (Pamela) Sahrle II of Silver Springs; 2 sisters, Millie Edmond of Greece, Bonnie Fink of Winston-Salem, N.C., 3 brothers, Ronald (Linda) Sahrle of Dansville, Robert (Susan) Sahrle of Springwater, Kenneth Sahrle of Dansville; 5 grandchildren, Bradley Musscarella, Stone and Winston Sahrle, Conley and Cooper Gayton; along with many nieces, nephews and friends. Along with his parents, he is preceded in death by a brother, Thomas Sahrle, who passed away in 2012. Services will be held at the convenience of the family. Gerry will be laid to rest in West Perry Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Perry Center Fire Department, P.O. Box 204, Perry, NY 14530. For more information, please call (585) 237-2626 or to leave a message of condolence, visit www.eatonwatsonfuneralhome.com. Arrangements completed by Eaton-Watson Funeral Home, LLC. 98 North Main Street, Perry, NY 14530.

Editor's Note: Gerald and Valarie could always be seen in the family pew with Pamela, Stone and Winston at Perry First United Methodist Church and continue to be loved. Gerry will be sorely missed. Both were supporters of the Arts at the Silver Lake Institute and Valarie was active in painting and participating in the Annual Show in August. Valarie's presence was always valued and appreciated.


"Kathy P." passed November 8, 2021, of Hamburg and Boston, NY. Beloved daughter of Joseph and Barbara Michalak; loving sister of Daniel Michalak; devoted wife of the late Jeffrey Praczkajlo; cherished mother of Jennifer (Shawn) Jump; loving babcia of Lily Jump; also survived by many beloved family members and friends who became her family. A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.

Editor's Note: "Kathy P." as she was better known to us at Silver Lake was an annual summer visitor for most of the last number of years at the invitation of Silver Laker Julia Hoffner. She stayed at the Hoffner Cottage, and became known as both the fun visitor with the vivacious smile to the neighbors at the intersection of Haven Ave. and the Ames Walkway. Kathy P. and Julie could be seen walking and talking between the cottage and the Hoffner boathouse where they could be close to the water. She was also occasionally seen at the Saturday morning breakfasts at Stoody Hall. Her stay was anywhere between 4 days and a week where she had the opportunity to develop a love for Silver Lake. She was not yet eligible for retirement when late last week she developed "a cold" and had to remain home from her job. She did not update her condition over the weekend so the local police made a wellness visit and found her deceased on Monday. She was one of those many people who found Silver Lake and friendship for brief respites where she also found new strength and energy to return to work. She is being particularly mourned by those in the Haven/Ames neighborhood. She will be memorialized next summer at the annual Celebration of Life Memorial Service at Epworth Hall.


Brenda Joan Paddock, 82, of Perry, born April 15, 1939, now resides in heaven with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Brenda met Jesus as her Savior in 1965. She met him in person on Nov. 14, 2021. She had a beautiful homecoming with music, singing and praying, leading her into Glory. Her last words were “I am well, I am well.”

Brenda’s greatest loves were her family and friends. Brenda had five children with her husband Roger: Don and Daelene Paddock of Florida, Jody and Tim Von Sanden of Pavilion, Bradley and Jeanie Paddock of Warsaw, Jennifer and Paul Guy of Massachusetts, and Nathan and Jill Paddock of Perry.

Brenda dearly loved her grandchildren: Jessica Morillo, Nikki and Clint O’Brien, Luke Paddock, Paul Paddock, Ian and Brooklyn Paddock, Joe and Louana Paddock, Burke and Megan Paddock, Aaron Paddock, Ellen Paddock, Andrew Paddock, Rachael Paddock, Abigail Paddock, Erik and Cassandra Von Sanden, Jacquelyn and Michael Jones, Tim Von Sanden, Brandon and Brandee Paddock, Jamey and Laura Paddock, Peter and Kara Guy, Candy and Jay Waitkevich, Marlo and Ryan Bolger and Jenna and Rory Peterson.

Brenda was blessed and loved her great grandchildren: Chloe, Olivia and Nicholas Von Sanden, Joshua and Jaxon Morillo, Jameson and Cassandra O’Brien, Atlas Paddock, Noah and Ezra Jones, Colton, Brantley and Charlotte Guy, Cameron Waitkevich, Amelia Bolger and Brennen Leonard.

Brenda is also survived by her brother and sister in laws; Frank and Emma Paddock, Viva and Jim Phillips-Richardson and Kurt and Lynn Paddock.

Brenda first started working as a secretary at Perry Central School. She then assisted her husband building Paddock’s Breeding Service. Roger and Brenda together built and ran the Sandsabarn teenage nightclub. Brenda was owner and operator of Serendipity Travel. Brenda’s pleasures included playing organ and piano. She played at a number of area churches along with performing for her loved ones. UPDATED -- Brenda also played with conviction at both indoor and outdoor services at the Silver Lake Institute where her grandson, Luke, sang at Epworth Hall on several occasions and was appreciated by all who heard his inspiring voice.

Brenda was preceded in death by her parents Noble and Freda Buckland, her husband Roger and son Bradley.

A Committal service at West Perry Cemetery will be held tomorrow, Wednesday, November 17 at 11 a.m., followed by a Celebration of Life at LaGrange Baptist Church at 4 p.m.

Memorial donations may be made in Brenda’s honor to the LaGrange Baptist Church 7092 LaGrange Rd. Perry, NY 14530 or to the First Congregational Church P.O. Box 156 Perry, NY 14530. Arrangements completed by Eaton-Watson Funeral Home, LLC. 98 N. Main St., Perry, N.Y. 14530. For more information or to sign the online guest registry please visit www.eatonwatsonfuneralhome.com.

AUGUST 4-7, 2022

AUGUST 4-7, 2022
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