Tuesday, November 9, 2021

History, Restoration Made Easier by Joining Together:
Be it Corfu and Charlie Flagg, or
SLI and its Historians and Articians, involvement are their strong points

Sue Weber, Mark Zimmerman, Charlie Flagg

It’s 10:30 Sunday morning and no one is certain whether Charlie Flagg is coming. “It’s Charlie. You never know with him,” says Mark Zimmerman, a member of the Corfu Village planning board.

Zimmerman gives Flagg a quick call and 15 minutes later Flagg arrives, his car a bit beat up and colorfully painted with one of his murals.

Sort of like Flagg himself: A bit beat up and still colorful after all these years. At 78, Flagg, a well-known rabble-rouser, mischief maker and renowned muralist, has embarked on his biggest project yet. With a little help from his friends.

Flagg was commissioned last year to paint a mural on the outside of the Union Hotel, an historic building that dates back to the 1830s. The hotel once had 16 rooms and a ballroom on the third floor with a floating dance floor. It burned in 1886 and was rebuilt.

The building fell into disrepair in the late 1940s but was renovated in the 1950s, with four bowling lanes added. Tom and Mary Dix, owners of Jay Potter Lumber, bought the building in 2018 and have been renovating it ever since.

Two years ago, the hotel made news when workers uncovered a Ringling Brothers circus poster from a performance in Batavia on June 27, 1907. The massive poster is expected to be renovated and kept on a wall inside the building.

The outside is all Flagg and friends, who say they hope to finish the project early next summer.

Flagg enlisted the help of Susan Weber, an artist who owned Gala Gallery in Darien Center from 1987 to 2010.

Weber had recently completed a mural on the inside of Alabama Hotel, another historic building. Weber incorporated local history in detailing her work. Weber jumped at the chance to work with Flagg, who has done murals worldwide and is often cited by other artists as inspirations for their mural work.

“He is a colorful character,” Weber said. “We’ve been having a great time, listening to all his stories.” Flagg told Weber to “do whatever you want” when she was adding her sections to the mural. “That made it more difficult,” she said.

Weber decided to dig into the history of Corfu and the surrounding area, much like Flagg has done with his murals. Her scenes depict Henry Phelps Carriage House, with a carriage passing by the windows of the hotel, where she painted Flagg sitting having dinner by the window.

Another scene is of the Dix family and another shows the bar, with former owner George Karam pouring a drink and a bottle of Weber’s son’s whiskey on the bar. Weber’s son, Frank, owns a distillery in Buffalo. Weber figures she has put 150 hours into the project so far.

Zimmerman also was brought in on the project.

“This is one of the things we’ve been trying to do in Corfu,” he said. “We’re trying to bring businesses in. We’ve had five open up recently and this building is going to be the jewel of the village.”

Zimmerman is just learning the art of mural painting and has no better teacher than Flagg. One of Zimmerman’s murals focused on tulips. The area was famous for tulips at Don Scott Florist and Garden Center, at one time the largest importer of Holland Tulips in the country.

Zimmerman also worked together with Flagg for a mural of Engine 999, which passed through Corfu on its way to a then-record land speed, topping out at 112.5 mph on May 10, 1893.

“It’s been a cooperative effort,” Flagg said of the project. “It’s the biggest one I’ve ever done. We started talking about it last year and my idea was a history of my life. Then it took me about 13 seconds ‘Why don’t you do that for Corfu?’ ”

The ideas flowed. Fun Country, now Six Flags Darien Lake; Old advertising signs; Boulder Amusement Park in Indian Falls; the Grange “with all the people helping me eating an apple pie,” Flagg says. Flagg’s imprint is all over Western New York but no place is his work as prevalent as it is in Corfu and Darien.

“This is going to be the best-looking mural in Western New York,” said Flagg, who has sold more than 15,000 pieces of art in his life. “Everyone can relate to it. The town and local history is like a gift that keeps giving, giving me all kinds of ideas.”

Learn and experience more of the history and arts from the past and present touching on the Silver Lake Institute in the Chautauqua tradition, by planning to come out for next summer's Silver Lake Experience 2022. The SLE website goes live January 1st or shortly thereafter. Registration begins in March 2022. The opportunities for all ages are innumerable, fun, and sometimes challenging--both to our thinking and our handiwork. August 4-7, 2022, with costs kept at a minimum through the generous support of the wider community.
Corfu Story By SCOTT DESMIT - sdesmit@batavianews.com
Last Paragraph, promotional by SLDN staff

No comments:

Post a Comment

Genuine commenting is warmly welcomed--Advertising is not welcome in the Comment Section and will be removed without further explanation.

SILVER LAKE EXPERIENCE (SLE) - Registration now Open for this August 4-6, 2022's SLE. See: SilverLakeExperience.org


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
Click on graphic (above) to be taken to the website.

Silver Lake Links

  • South Lake Cam (S/L Marine; SLA)
  • Videos of SLI Grounds & Shoreline
  • AMES WALKWAY--No Parking on Walkway from every July 1 through Labor Day by order of the SLI Trustees.
    (Julie Hoffner or Greg Franklin)
    (Joan Maddison)
  • Heritage Walkway
  • (Suzanne Bristow)
  • Silver Lake Arts
    (Loren Penman)
  • Silverlaken
    (Mike Bellamy)
  • Silver Lake Experience Website (SLE)
  • Silver Lake Experience Facebook (SLE)
  • Who's Who at SLA
  • Who's Who at SLI
  • Email gfranklin.silverlake@gmail.com or call our Silver Lake Cell at 716-346-3567 to have your lake-oriented organization and/or link listed here.

    SLI Open Programming

    Self Serve

    Click on ABC News above to watch

    Courtesy Ad

    Thanks to our
    ACWC Partners in
    Local Programming

    Thanks to our<br>ACWC Partners in<br>Local Programming
    Our vision is to bring art to people, and bring people to the arts. The Arts Council for Wyoming County has been inspiring residents and visitors in and around Wyoming County, New York for more than four decades. Becoming a member of the Arts Council for Wyoming County gives you an open invitation to experience art in many ways. Be enriched, enlightened, and elevated. Learn to express yourself, explore ideas, experiment. Take time to admire, aspire, respond, and be renewed. Find ways to grow. Join Today!
    Silver Lake thanks the ACWC, the NYS Legislature, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo for the Art Funds which make many of the Silver Lake programs possible.
    Click on ACWC above for website

    Double Click on the Historical Marker above to be taken to the "Pioneer Cabin" website; or go to the "3 Tours" Tab in the Menu to be taken on a virtual tour of their grounds.

    Page Views since 2010: