Medina in Orleans County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Gulf Street Park
in 1945, three WWII vets and
nine area kids used hand tools
to clear trees, brush and
rocks. Two generations of kids,
named the Rock Street Gang
after the local sandstone
quarry, maintained the park.
Erected by Ron and Cherie Stork.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Parks & Recreational Areas. A significant historical year for this entry is 1945.
Location. 43° 13.709′ N, 78° 23.414′ W. Marker is in Medina, New York, in Orleans County. Marker is at the intersection of Stork Street and Gulf Street, on the left when traveling east on Stork Street. Marker is three lots west of the intersection. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 141 Stork St, Medina NY 14103, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. John Ryan 1801-96 / Medina Sandstone (approx. 0.2 miles away); Frances Folsom (approx. 0.4 miles away); Vietnam (approx. 0.4 miles away); Valor, Honor, Virtue, Courage, Duty (approx. half a mile away); Medina Armory (approx. half Grover Cleveland & Frances Folsom (approx. half a mile away); White's Hotel (approx. half a mile away); On This Site Circa 1919 Alonzo L. Waters (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Medina.
1. The Ball Park
This is the story of Gulf Street Park, written by Dell Stork.
In the spring of 1945 the field behind Mr. William Bloom’s house at 141 Stork Street was over grown with brush and weeds. Pepper Santillo, John Santillo and Chester Kwiatkowski, who were home from World War II, got the kids in the neighborhood together and said we’re going to have a ball park. The kids were Tony Kwiatkowski, Jack Parada, Frank Stack, Walter Stack, Frank Bunchuck, Greg Pope, Bernie Dujenski, Dell Stork, and Sam Santillo.
Everyone brought rakes, shovels and push mowers (there were no power mowers back then). The gang cut grass, dug up trees and brush, and removed many large rocks. We used an old wheel barrow to bring in dirt to fill low spots and holes where the rocks had been.
A lady of Russian heritage, Mrs. Tarasuk, from 213 Glenwood Ave, had used the field for her cow.
We set the ball field up so that home base was behind Mr. Bloom’s garage. We used old boards that were 1 foot square as bases.
Two weeks after we had gotten the field in good shape, the team from the Sacred Heart Club was playing their games on it.
In the late forties and through the fifties, the field was taken care of by Chester Maryjankowski, Joe Maryjankowski, Rocco Pope, Don Bloom, Tony Bielak, Tony Parada, Ed Parada, Walter Lewandowski, Bill Lewandowski, Frank Lewandowski, Edwin Washak, Ed Johnson, Eugene Wanecski, Ron Washak, Bernie Parada, and Frank Mencelwicz.
Even as late as the 1960’s, some of the neighborhood residents got together and held bake sales to raise funds for some of the playground equipment.
At one time, the property was owned by A.L. Swett and the Buffalo Niagara Electric Corporation, in later years the property was transferred to the Village of Medina. The Village improved the area and maintains the Park to this day. The Park is now called Gulf Street Park.
— Submitted July 26, 2020.
Credits. This page was last revised on July 26, 2020. It was originally submitted on May 20, 2019, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York. This page has been viewed 254 times since then and 21 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on May 20, 2019, by Anton Schwarzmueller of Wilson, New York.