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Banners kick off Cobblestone campaign

A campaign to tweak up and draw attention to the Cobblestone District kicked off Thursday with the hanging of 18 banners on light posts along Mississippi, Illinois and Perry streets, and South Park Avenue in downtown Buffalo.

Several business owners in the district are funding the effort, including Savarino Companies, FFZ Holdings, Frontier Industrial Services, Abbey Mecca & Co. and Lagerhaus 95.

The goal is to brand the Cobblestone District as a destination, said Dan Mecca, president of Abbey, Mecca & Co.

"The district not only played a significant part in Buffalo's history, but today it offers easy access, plenty of parking, proximity to the waterfront and Canalside, along with great bars, restaurants and entertainment," Mecca said in a news release.

The Cobblestone District tucked in beside the First Niagara Center is among the oldest commercial districts in the city that has undergone extensive commercial renovation in recent years.

Dennis Brinkworth, owner of WJ Morrissey's in the Cobblestone District, said he thinks the banners can be an effective way to highlight the area for people looking for dining and entertainment venues.

"I think we're headed into a great future," Brinkworth said. "With all the activity, especially this summer, we're hoping to become like the Chippewa for Canalside and the concert series, he said. "There's an incredible amount of historical value to the district. [The banners] will help give us a distinct presence."

Sam Savarino, a partner at Savarino Companies, said the historical district has a charm all its own. He said there has been a lot more activity this summer already and hopes to see it grow the rest of the summer and beyond.

"There are retail establishments that need the traffic to thrive [as a business]," Savarino said. "I'm hoping there's spillover from the concert series. There's something going on at Canalside every day."

email: mparrino@buffnews.com