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Another swing and a miss for Albion with Bullard Park grant

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 16 December 2015 at 12:00 am

File photo by Tom Rivers – Albion village officials have been trying for years to get state assistance to upgrade equipment at Bullard Park. The grants announced last week by the state didn’t include funding for Bullard.

ALBION – The Village of Albion tried again for a state grant to update Bullard Park, but the long list of grants announced by the state last week didn’t include Bullard.

Village officials say they haven’t received official notification that Albion was denied in its request for $400,000. However, the village and its grantwriter, Jean O’Connell and Associates in Clarence, have combed through the list of grant winners and didn’t see money for Albion.

Albion tried for grants from the state in 2012 and 2013, then seeking $600,000. The application was scaled back this time with the top goals a new spray park and playground equipment.

The village created a committee, Rebuild Bullard, to prioritize the funding and projects at the park on Route 31.

The Albion Lions Club, Elks Club, village and town have all rallied to try to upgrade the park, which has hosted new community events in recent years, including the Rock the Park music festival and a Metro 10 race pitting Rochester and Buffalo runners.

The grants approved by the state have put a focus on jobs and economic development. The village thought the spray park would not only improve the quality of life for local children and their families, but would be a draw to the community. There currently isn’t a spray park in Orleans County, and some local residents go outside Orleans to spray parks on hot summer days.

Even without state help, the village has been making improvements to the park with new playground equipment added last year at the Pee Wee section of the park. The sledding hill also has been reshaped with fill from the Clarendon Street bridge. Stairs and hand rails also have been added to the sledding hill.