The grand opening of the Walden Galleria was 30 years ago this week, May 1, 1989, which means it’s been at least three decades since you had a draft beer or fish fry at the Leonard Post Jr. VFW Post at its longtime home at 2000 Walden Ave.
The cornerstone was laid for the building in 1960 and it was open for business the following year. For the next 28 years, it was the home of the post named in honor and memory of PFC Leonard Post, a Cheektowaga resident who was killed during the invasion of Normandy in 1944.
As the new mall opened as the new neighbor to the Sheraton Hotel, the new VFW post opened about a mile east on Walden Avenue, where it’s been ever since.
This aerial view of Walden at Union might have been taken in 1958 with a handful of other aerial photos of that same area with the date stamped on them.
Buffalo News archives
Decades before the building of the Walden Galleria, Cheektowaga High School is perhaps the easiest landmark to identify. The on- and off-ramps of the Thruway on Walden at the bottom of the photo help situate the rest of the photo, as well.
Just on the right edge of the page, east of the Walden/Union intersection, is the longtime home of Brand Names.
Off in the distance, the Twin Drive-In and Twin Fair, both of which closed in 1982, can be seen at the corner of Walden and Dick.
The Google image shows the same area, turned 90 degrees, today.