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Memories from The Old Pink flood back for woman engaged there

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Cleanup continues at The Old Pink, a legendary dive bar torn down after a fire tore through the building early Monday morning. Amid the rubble, decades of priceless memories came rushing back for regulars of this Allentown meet-up.

A yellow excavator spent Tuesday afternoon removing the burnt ruins of the legendary institution.

A candlelight vigil Monday night drew hundreds to Allen and Mariner streets for a final farewell to a place known for its music, people and steak sandwiches.

Amid the scattered green and purple bricks, a wedding photo sat propped against a beer can.

“I was out with some friends and I really wanted to go home,” said Amanda Polino. “I think it was 2 or 3 in the morning and my friends Nicole and Ann were begging me to stay out. So, our last stop was The Old Pink.”

The Old Pink demolished after Monday morning fire

It was inside 223 Allen St. during the summer of 2008, that Polino was introduced to her future husband Bobby. The two clicked and nine months later a new chapter of their lives began at their old stomping ground.

“He blindfolded me, he said he was taking me somewhere special, and I opened my eyes and I see The Pink,” Polino said. “And we walked in and he had flowers there, a bottle of champagne — got down on one knee.”

On their wedding day, the pair snapped a photo standing in front of the iconic green flames where it all started.

Polino is grateful, like so many others, to the place that brought people from all walks of life together.

Neighbors pay homage to The Old Pink following fire, demolition

And a brick she snagged from the rubble will always serve as a reminder of that.

“The spirit of The Pink will always live on,” said Polino. “It will always live on for everyone who was a part of that — everyone in Buffalo. I’m happy to be part of that.”

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Patrick Ryan is an award-winning reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2020. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.

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