These days, Ilio DiPaolo’s a South Park Ave. landmark which fills two blocks with its Ringside Lounge and adjacent parking. A generation or two ago– it was the restaurant which stood in that parking lot which was the landmark.
Dairy Island was both the name of a restaurant and the milk brand produced by the Arcade Farms Co-op. The $150,000 facility was billed as a “modern milk plant and dairy bar” when it opened in 1947.
“We hope that Dairy Island will serve as a wholesome recreation spot for Blasdell and vicinity among young people,” said William Sadler, plant manager at the grand opening. Sadler was a Hamburg Town Councilman and later an Assemblyman.
In Albany, Sadler worked on the legislation which made the production of fortified skim milk legal, which Dairy Island marketed as “a boon to dieters.”
In 1951, management of the Dairy Island restaurant was taken over by the owners of the Colonial Kitchen chain, which had restaurants on Buffalo St. in Hamburg, Seneca St. at Buffum in South Buffalo, and the original location on Ridge Rd. in Lackawanna.
When the Dairy Island restaurant was closed and converted to dairy production use in 1954, a Colonial Kitchen restaurant opened across South Park Ave. in its place.
In the mid-1960s, the Arcade Farms Co-op merged with the Upstate Milk Co-op which took over the building, which was eventually purchased by Sorrento Cheese. The Dairy Island building was torn down in 1989 when Ilio DiPaolo bought the building to make space for a parking lot for his newly expanded banquet room.