Online News. Community Views.

Recent comments

Community Sponsors

May 3, 2008 - 2:36pm
posted by Patrick D. Burk in Batavia Players, GCC, Jimmy Dean, Plays, Community Theater.

Whew...this is a busy time for me so on this wonderful Saturday I wanted to take the time to remind everyone that the Batavia Players, Inc. Spring Show...."COME BACK TO THE 5 & DIME, JIMMY DEAN, JIMMY DEAN is opening on Thursday, May 8th and running through Saturday, May 10th. Performances are at 7:30 PM at the Stuart Steiner Theater at Genesee Community College. Tickets are $10 for General Admission and $8 for Seniors and Students. The play was a wonderful hit that starred the likes of Cher, Kathy Bates, Sandy Dennis and many more on Broadway. The content is PG - 13 in nature. Please join us this coming week. The play centers around the Kresmonth 5 & Dime outside of Marfa, Texas during the time of filming "Giant". The movie starred Rock Hudson, Elizabeth Taylor and James Dean. Our characters are depicted in 1955 during the filming and again in 1975 at the 20th Year Reunion of the Disciples of James Dean. A comedy/drama that is brilliant with dialouge and bright in character. I am pleased to direct our local cast which includes Valeria Antonetty, Shawnie Euren, Lynda Hodgins, Nikole Marone, Peggy Marone, Joan Meyer, Patti Michalak, Rachel Oshlag and featuring Jake Bortle as "Joe". I hope that you will all join us for this wonderful production. This is the second of four shows in the Batavia Players, Inc. 2008 Season. Next up - "Jesus Christ Superstar" in August.

May 2, 2008 - 7:12pm
posted by Daniel Jones in politics, Democrats, Young Democrats, Voting.

The Genesee County Young Democrats will be running a voter registration table at Genesee Community College (in the forum) on May 7th and 8th from Noon to 8pm.

There is still time to register to vote in the General Election, as Voter Registration forms typically take 30 days to process. For those already registered to vote, becoming registered or too young to be registered. as I was once involved but too young to vote myself, we will also have information on how to get involved in the Young Democrats and in the local political scene from the Democratic end.

However, even if your not interested in becoming actively involved in politics we will, regardless of party affiliation, help you become a registered voter none the less. See you on the 7th and 8th!

May 2, 2008 - 3:33pm
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, VA, government.

Well, the thunderheads that rode my back all afternoon finally broke and clapped out a fine downpour that soaked me through and through as I jogged from the old county courthouse to my car. It was an apt climax to an ominous day that smelled alternately of manure, garlic bread and peonies.

Not much to report as the day has been spent more in preparation than any actual news gathering. In characteristic style, I made my introductions by getting lost all over the place. Lost in the tunnels of the VA Medical Center. Lost in its auditorium. Lost in both courthouses (old and new), in the county office building and in a parking lot — don't ask.

I met some more great folks indoors and out. Paul Figelow stopped by Main Street Coffee to say hello. He's the owner of a sort of video production company: Dan Jones introduced himself via Instant Message. Dan seems like a fellow who has a lot to say, so, hopefully, we'll see some more of him on here. He heads up a Young Democrats group in Batavia.

There were others as well. Maybe they will come by and introduce themselves.

I'm off to continue my urban wanderings, maybe make a few phonecalls. None yet returned today — it's Friday. If I don't see you back here today, have a fine weekend.

May 2, 2008 - 3:04pm
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, technology, city, schools.

From Kathie Scott, public information coordinator for the Batavia City School District:

Small City in Spotlight for Big Technology

Behind the scenes, The Batavia City School District has been preparing diligently for the national spotlight.

On May 4-6, the District will host a National School Boards Association (NSBA) Technology Tour. Approximately 75 participants from around the United State and Canada have signed up so far to spend a few days in Batavia to see first-hand why the District has dubbed this tour, Small City/Big Technology.

The event will include some “history” and current overviews of how technology is utilized for student learning throughout the District, information outlining the hardware and software installed or accessed, as well as tours of all the schools. During the tours, participants will be able go into our learner-centered classrooms to see the various technological tools in use by teachers and students in diverse subject areas, K-12.

Except for the visitors, it will be a fairly typical day in the District. Some students, for example, will be collecting data, analyzing and converting it into meaningful statistics and then creating circle graphs. Others will work independently on skill-building in subjects from reading to math. Partners will research topics on the internet to help them better prepare for their arguments in a debate. Groups will interact with students from across the District (or in other cases, from across the country) to discuss and critique literature.  One class will take digital photos and then edit as part of creating a multi-media presentation for the entire school.

To conclude each school’s tour, small instructional focus groups for the participants will enable District staff to share more specific information and answer questions about how technology fits in with instructional programs, age groups, and subject matter. A small sampling of those topics includes Using the Interactive Whiteboard, The Use of Technology in Data Mining, Educational Games, Technology and Special Education, Videoconferencing in the elementary Class, Technology to Enhance Foreign Language Instruction, Blog It!, Geochaching, and Technology in the Primary Classroom.

Another highlight of the visit will be a technology-on-stage performance, Cinemagic. For Cinemagic, students from all three elementary school choruses will perform a choral revue consisting of 38 songs from well-known movies. This particular multi-media performance was chosen for the NSBA Technology Tour participants because of its integration of technology with music. The schools' three music teachers began holding rehearsals with the 150 students several months ago in preparation for the production, which also was performed for District families, and for students at the three elementary schools. As part of their preparation, students were given rehearsal CD’s, produced with music software, so they could practice at home. In addition to lighting and staging techniques, the performance is notable for incorporating the use of PowerPoint and Moviemaker software.

May 2, 2008 - 12:43pm
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, news, Daily News, headlines.

From the Daily News (Friday):

• Rochester teen Andrew Figgins was sentenced to 25-years-to-life for shooting and killing Desean Gooch in a robbery attempt in 2006. Gooch was an Ohio native attending Genesee Community College.

• Head down to Hairitage Salon at 103 Jackson St. for a chicken barbecue to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society starting at 1:00pm Saturday — until the food is gone. Tickets can be purchased at the salon for $8.

• A Super 8 Motel and Days Inn on Oak Street will "split," according to reporter Roger Muehlig, and the Genesee County Economic Development Agency will give them a sales tax exemption to do so. Both motels are owned by the same company, Batavia Hospitality. Can someone explain how two motels can split? Are they connected right now? They must be. But if they're connected, how are they two motels? Muehlig writes: "The two motel corporations involved wanted to split the building, a former Holiday Inn, to improve its appearance." But wait! I thought the two motels were owned by a single corporation. I'm lost. Anyone else?

• "United Memorial Medical Center honored its volunteers at a dinner Wednesday at Bohn's Restaurant."

For the complete stories, the Daily News is available on local newsstands, or you can subscribe on

May 2, 2008 - 12:26pm
posted by Patrick D. Burk in Spring, Our Neighbors, Dandelions.

How do most people spend the early spring in Batavia? Why they spruce up thier yards, plant bulbs and make a general, post haste rush to the out of doors and into the reasonably seasonal breath of warmth. This is a result of the more than tedious length of cold, numbing weather with grey skies, dirty snow and piles on delivered but unread Pennysavers that lay on our lawns, long lost by the ever increasing cover of snow and ice. Until a couple of weeks ago that was the description of my yard in Batavia at least. An environment that is more connected to Siberia than most would want to think. It appears our favorite and most prevalent plant, the dandelion, is the one successful thing that stays bright green year round. Before the snow was totally gone, we had bright yellow flowers popping up all over..... and we poison them with weed killers because they dot our ever perfect, blade precisioned lawns. I welcome them. In fact, yellow is my favorite color and it is so good to see them and the other assorted flowers bud away and bloom as soon as the warmer breezes grace our tundra. You know this place, my favorite little city in the whole world, Batavia, is where I call home. My wife and I chose to move here to raise our children and to be in a wonderful safe and caring community. We have great schools, interesting things to do and wonderful neighbors. We could use a few more small specialty stores, maybe a nice department store and oh least one more pizzeria. But this is my home and I love it. Call me wierd, but keep the rest of the world, little old Batavia suits me just fine. Recently on a short trip over the border to Canada, or as my wife and I think of it as, The Mother Land (Both or our mother's were Canadian), I realized once again how wonderful it is to travel so near and see so many wonders. As many times as I have peered at Niagara Falls or watched the birds and the black swans in Stratford, Ontario, I still love to get off the Thruway at our exit that says home...or in our case Batavia. It is with purpose that I write this today. First, it is my first BLOG in the Batavian and it certainly will not be my last, BUT...perhaps my second reason is more succint. My second reason is this....When you find yourself getting blue and grey over the snow and the cold. When you see the mounds and piles of dirt covered hills in our plaza parking lots. Even when the local Pennysavers are piled at the end of your driveway like they conveniently know where they are supposed to end up anyway in that little blue box, I remember one thing. It is the people here that are beautiful... It is the friends and the opportunities and the families. Give me my little predictable slice of the Siberian Tundra of Western New York anyday...Bright Blooming Dandelions and the smiles of my friends and neighbors are all that matters and BATAVIA is bursting with them. So a quick smile to a friend, a nod of the head and a wave to a person jogging and walking make my day. Oh and I lay off the weed killer and let the dandelions get big, yellow and bright.... it is the least I can do...

May 2, 2008 - 8:53am
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, news, headlines, wbta.

Check out WBTA for these and other stories:

• City police officer Ed Mileham was among four area lawmen from Genesee County honored at the Law Day Law Enforcement Awards, sponsored by the Batavia Kiwanis Club and the Genesee County Bar Association.

• A United Auto Workers strike in Detroit could have major repercussions in Western New York as a potential "solution" could mean closing an American Axle forge plant in Tonawanda. An article from the Associated Press on the happenings can be found here. It does not say how many workers would lose their jobs. Are there any Batavians who work at that plant? What do you think of this possible outcome? More of the same? Terrible and unexpected?

• Michael Merrill has been named interim Medical Director at United Memorial Medical Center. He "takes over for Louis Green, who died unexpectedly earlier this year."

May 2, 2008 - 8:22am
posted by nancy baxter in Carl Bish, spaghetti dinner, chinese auction, youth group.

Oakfield Community Youth Group hosts a benefit for Carl Bish Jr. Carl is a 9th grader at OACS that has recently been diagnosed with cancer. Carl and his family are active in many activities at school - Carl was on the JV football team this year. Our local youth have decided to have a spaghetti dinner - chinese auction for Carl and the Bish family. May 17th 4:30 - 7:30 Oakfield Fire Hall $7.00 adults $5.00 kids 12 and under Menu: spaghetti with meatballs tossed salad dinner roll beverage dessert For tickets or donations please call 948-5120. Thanks.

May 1, 2008 - 5:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in thebatavian.

Earlier today, I told you that soon you, too, could blog on The Batavian.

Our crack programming staff made it happen sooner than expected.  You can blog now.

How's that for soon?

All registered users have a blog by default.  To submit a post, once you're logged in, look for the "Create Content" link on the left of the page.  Click it.  The next page will have a link for "Blog Post." Click that link.  You'll then have a page that asks you to type a headline, some keywords related to your post (called "tags"), and then a text-entry area with some buttons that will remind you of Microsoft Word.

Write your post.

Scroll to the bottom where you will find "Save" and "Preview" buttons. Preview allows you to review your post before it goes live (though you still have an option to edit after it is live). When you click "Save" the post will be posted live to the site.

Your post will not appear on the home page automatically. 

At every opportunity, Philip and I will review blog posts and publish to the home page any we find of sufficiently broad interest or newsworthiness. 

Since only selected posts appear on the home page, this gives you the option to create a purely personal blog, if you like (it will still be public, but not as prominent).

Right now, your blog will have something of an ugly URL (like mine here), but eventually we'll fix the URLs so that your blog's URL identifies your username.

Have fun blogging!

May 1, 2008 - 4:34pm
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, Philip.

Well, folks, we've "officially" launched The Batavian. You can find out all about what that means and why you should be interested by following this convenient hyperlink. In the meantime, please allow me to introduce myself.

My name is Philip.

I'm about five-foot-ten (unless you count my hair which puts me up over six feet, I'm sure). I come from prime Italian immigrant stock with a little Welsh and German thrown in for good measure. I speak French, eat Japanese, and I'm as thin as a stick and maybe as tough. I grew up in Greece, the Rochester suburb that's more crowded and less personable than the city, which is where I live now with my girl, our two cats and many shelves of books — a few of which I've read. I would count Saul Bellow and Henry David Thoreau as two fine specimens of the American race. In the dozen years since I graduated high school, I've washed dishes, studied philosophy, produced short films, taught English, moved pianos and wrote (for newspapers, magazines and other media).


Let us on to the business at hand... I'll be doing my best to manage the content here at The Batavian. That means I look for news, for stories, happenings, events and whatever else can be squeezed into a blog post, a short video, an audio podcast, a photograph or just summarized, linked to and let be. What it really means, though, is I want to hear from you, so Batavia can hear about you.

Maybe your organization is hosting a tea party to benefit a rare disease. Maybe you juggle knives. Maybe you are a member of City Council and you have more to say than what makes it into a bi-monthly meeting. Whatever it is, call me. Come by and see me. Send me an instant message. Send me an e-mail. We'll talk. Or... you'll talk. I'll listen. (Please see all my contact information below.)

Just as important, I should mention that I'm here to find my replacement. I need someone who has a love of writing and producing mutlimedia content that matches his or her love for Batavia. Someone who wants to do what I do, full-time, with the skills to do it.

So, let's start talking:

• My number: (585) 802-3032.

• My e-mail: philip (at) thebatavian (dot) com.

• My AOL Instant Message name: thebatavian.

• My office: Main Street Coffee (for the moment).

I look forward to hearing from you.

May 1, 2008 - 3:49pm
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, news, Daily News, headlines.

From the Daily News (Thursday):

• Republican Christopher J. Lee announced his bid for the 26th Congressional District seat Wednesday. Reporter Roger Muehlig writes: "Lee, 44, is a Clarence resident and a Western New York native who is seeking elected office for the first time."

• Underage drinkers beware! The Genesee County STOP-DWI program is passing out a handheld device that can detect if a driver's license has been altered. The device will go to restaurants, bars and retail stores in the county and costs about $10 a pop. Questions: How many sales could this potentially prevent? Are most underage sales of alcohol procured via a "fake" ID? Or are they got by "alternate" IDs — supplied by a look-alike friend — or even someone over the age of 21 who buys the alcohol for those who are too young?

• The Batavia Society of Artists opens the first of two 2008 exhibitions with a reception at the Richmond Memorial Library Wednesday from 7:00 to 8:30pm in the library's Gallery Room. More than 30 works — including oils, watercolors, acrylics and mixed media — will be on display through May 29.

• The Genesee Chorale will hold its "From Prose to Song" concerts this Friday at 7:00pm at New Hope Ministries, 8052 Bank Road, Batavia; and Sunday at 3:00pm at St. Peter's Catholic Church, 44 Lake St., LeRoy. Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and student, and $14 for a family (no mention of how large the family can be). No number is given to call for more information.

• An exhibit of multimedia photographs by artist Melissa Newcomb is now on display in the lobby gallery of Genesee Center for the Arts at Genesee Community College. "A Fragment in Time" will run through August 15. Call (585) 345-6814 for more information.

Genesee Community College will host a symposium titled Creating Smart & Good Schools: Integrating Ethics & Excellence. The talk will be held Tuesday from 7:00 to 9:00pm in Room T102 of the college. Registration is required in advance. Call Christine Belongia at (585) 343-0055 ext.6278 to register or for more information.

Richmond Memorial Library will host a slide show and talk titled "Frank Lloyd Wright's Darwin D. Martin House Complex" from 7:00 to 8:00pm May 8. There is no charge to attend. Call (585) 343-9550 ext.8 for more information.

• The Batavia office of Brighton Securities received thanks from the U.S. Army in the form of a certificate and an American flag that was "flown on a combat reconnaissance mission with Task Force Odin over Baghdad, Iraq, on December 9, 2007." Brighton Securities sponsored phone cards and sent care packages to different units serving in Iraq.

For the complete stories, the Daily News is available on local newsstands, or you can subscribe on

May 1, 2008 - 1:39pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in energy, wind power, perry.

Wind power seems like a good thing -- clean, natural, a renewable energy source.

These days, who can be opposed to such benefits?

So why are people in Perry blocking -- and have been blocking for three years -- the construction of a wind farm in their town? Matt Suretl's story in today's Daily News doesn't tell us.

Surtell writes:"It often appears there's little middle ground between the most adamant supporters and opponents," yet he never gives much information on the pros and cons, as Perry residents see them.

This leave the impression that the opponents are nothing more than unapologetic NIMBYs.

My only experience with wind turbines comes from often driving past the majestic, earth-saving machines in Tehachapi. From everything I heard while a resident of nearby Bakersfield, the people of Tehachapi consider the wind farm an asset -- but then it's a bit of a tourist attraction. There's no guarantee the people of Perry would be as fortunate.

Here's some related links:

What do you think? Should there be a wind farm in Perry?  Why or why not?

Note: Today's Daily News is available on new stands now. If you're not a subscriber, you can subscribe at


May 1, 2008 - 1:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in thebatavian.

From now until 5 p.m. or so, either Philip or I will be at the back table of Main Street Coffee.  Stop on by and have a cup of java on us. We would love to meet you.

May 1, 2008 - 11:05am
posted by Howard B. Owens in launch, thebatavian, journalism.

"Officially," today is the launch day of The Batavian.

That may not mean much; we've been up and running for a week and a half.  The only thing that has really changed from yesterday to today is that starting this morning we're running ads on WBTA.  (Ads start in the Pennysaver this week, as well).

You might be wondering, "what is this thing called The Batavian?"

It's an online news site. It's a community site. It's an information site.  It's an opinion site. It's an online place for Batavians to meet and share information, ideas and view points.

Our one paid staff member is Philip Anselmo.  His job is to keep tabs on Batavia, post interesting stuff and help host the conversations that take place on The Batavian.

Our goal is to create an oft-updated online site that Batavians appreciate and use frequently. We intend to be a part of the Batavia community for a long, long time.  If that happens, we will grow and we will hire.  Our intention is to hire people who live in and love Batavia.  Part of Philip's job is to help recruit his replacement. 

For too long, community newspapers have lost their way because they are often staffed by people who don't feel they have a long-term stake in the community.  The best and brightest reporters and editors eventually move on to better paying jobs in bigger cities.

We want The Batavian to be different.  We want to find good reporters who understand our content strategy and who would enjoy covering Batavia for many, many years.

What is our content strategy?  Simply put, to use the Web the way it was intended.

We write in a personal voice. We share about who we are and what interests us.  A common myth about the Internet is that it depersonalizes human interaction.  People who use the Web often know this isn't true.  Web communication is more personal, more human. 

You won't see us refer to this site as a "virtual community" (a term common for sites like this a few years ago).  There is nothing virtual about online communities.  Online communities are just as real as anything that happens offline, because the friendships and alliances formed, the tasks accomplished and the good done are just as real as anything that happens on Main Street, a board room or in a Rotary meeting.

Of course, when you start using personal pronouns, you'll likely stray into the area of sharing your own opinions.

In old-school journalism, expressing opinions is a sin. In online journalism, it's a virtue.

American's distrust of the media is at an all-time high.  A big reason for this distrust, we believe, is that reporters and editors often boast of their objectivity and lack of bias, but we all know that objectivity is impossible and bias is the natural human state.

American journalism often puts on a false front of objectivity, but every reporter and editor comes to a story and its set of facts with a specific mindset, a specific context.

Facts do not mean much outside of context, and context is always subjective. That's why two groups of people can have completely different views on what facts in a particular narrative are important, and which facts can be ignored.  The debates around the Iraq War illustrate perfectly how facts can mean different things to different people, and also how different contexts can cause some people to believe things other people are convinced are not true.

We believe a more honest form of journalism is to let you know what our context is as part of our coverage.  Rather than pretend to be objective (which, again, is impossible in the common journalistic meaning), we'll share our opinions when we have them (not that we will always have them on every story).

When we don't know something, or don't understand, we'll admit it and ask for your input and help.  We've already seen an example of how this works on last Tuesday's Daily News Roundup.  Philip had questions about a story, and Council President Charlie Mallow jumped in with answers.

That's a new kind of journalism, but one we believe is much more effective in serving a community and more benefitical to civic discourse and democracy.

We ask of ourselves and everybody who participates in this site:

  • Honesty in identity and context (please register with your real name, or with your organizational name if representing a group of people)
  • Accuracy in the facts and representations
  • An abhorance for personal attacks — no name calling, please
  • Value and seek truth
  • Give credit where credit is due (we always cite our sources, and if possible, link to those sources).

We hope that you value The Batavian and visit the site often.  We promise to work hard to keep the site updated frequently with the latest news and information.  We will do our best to keep the conversation civil.

We have many new features coming — before long, you will be able to set up your own blog on The Batavian — so keep in eye out for updates and new additions to the site.

You can also help to promote The Batavian

  • If you have a Web site, link to us. 
  • If you have a blog, please tell us about it and link and comment on our posts. 
  • E-mail all of your friends and associates who would find value in The Batavian and let them know about the site.
  • Register and leave comments.  The more conversation, the better for everybody.
  • Include a notice about The Batavian in your school, organization or business newsletter (please).

The more voices heard on The Batavian, the more useful the conversations will be to Batavia.

BTW: If you don't know what a blog is — blog is short for "Web log." It's both an online publishing platform (just a tool, or technology), but also a mindset about how to communicate online.  Posts appear when the blogger has something to say (no deadlines), often (but not always) contain opinion, are written in a personal voice, appear in reverse chronological order and rely on links with other Web sites to facilitate conversation.  If you don't have a blog and want one, and don't want to wait for The Batavian to make one available to you, visit, where you can set up a blog for free — just let us know about it when you've got it going.

A word about news tips:  Soon, we'll have a way for you to submit your own news, or tips, on this web site.  In the mean time, send your tips to philip (at) the (oneword) batavian dot com.

Philip will post something later today introducing himself.

May 1, 2008 - 9:08am
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, history, photo.

I came across this spectacle during my travels around the city yesterday. Do you know where it is? Do you know what it is? (This is, of course, just one small section of a much larger artifact — if we can call it that.) I'll put up a medium cup of java from Main Street Coffee to the first person who can guess both what and where this thing is.

May 1, 2008 - 8:52am
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, BID, Jackson Square, music.

Jackson Square Concert Series 2008 — Downtown Batavia:

• Friday, June 20th (7-9 p.m.) Civilletto Sings Sinatra

• Friday, June 27th  (7-9 p.m.) Ghost Riders (Country)

• Friday, July 4th, (7-9 p.m.)  Pre-Ramble Concert (Ghost Riders, Sierra & Friends)

• Saturday, July 5  (11a.m. - 9 p.m.)  Ramble Music & Art Fest (Variety)

• Friday, July 11th  (7-9 p.m.) Westside Blues Band (Blues)

• Friday, July 18th  (7-9 p.m.)  Joe Beard & The Blues Union (Blues)

• Friday, July 25th (7-9 p.m.) OHMS Band (Rock)

• Friday, August 1st (7-9 p.m.)  Penny Whiskey (Celtic/folk)

• Friday, August 8th (7-9 p.m.) Julie Dunlap (Country)

• Friday, August 22nd (7-9 p.m.) Bart & Kevin (Family)

• Friday, August 29th (7-9 p.m.)  Craig Wilkins (Johnny Cash Tribute)

Major sponsors of the "Friday Night in the Square" summer music series are: M&T Bank, the Batavia Buisness Improvement District and GoArt!

The series is hosted by the Batavia Business Improvement District. Call (585) 344-0900 for more information.

"We assist new and existing businesses, locate space and provide economic incentives for businesses to locate in downtown Batavia," says Don Burkel, president of the BID. "We also host: the Downtown Public Market, Summer in the City Festival and Christmas in the City Festival."

May 1, 2008 - 8:26am
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, wbta.

Check out WBTA for these and other news stories:

• Assemblyman Stephen Hawley announced his bid for re-election to represent the 139th District in the state Assembly.

• Batavia will receive nearly $400,000 in state grant funds. About $150,000 will be used to build a booking facility at the Genesee County Jail that would be shared by both county and city forces. Another $150,000 is slated for sidewalk improvements. And about $90,000 will cover the cost of a new ambulance for the city.

April 30, 2008 - 5:13pm
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, restaurants, business, downtown, town.

Don't let anyone ever tell you that Batavia doesn't have good food. You have already heard us rave about the tacos de asada at Margarita's on Jackson Street — personally, I've already been back a few times. And, if you've entertained even a passing interest in our daily goings-on here at The Batavian, you would know that we've happily sucked down our fair share of lattes at Main Street Coffee, our current base of operations.

Well, today, I took off in search of some more unknown territory — political, edible and otherwise. After a stop at the Batavia Town Hall and the county historian's office, I made my way to Oliver's Candies on Main Street... for a taste.

Jeremy Liles manages the place these days. He smiles and jokes the way I imagine anyone would who spent their life and career in a candy store.

He told me that, though the candy is the main draw, Oliver's is sought out just as much for its roadside sign — a relic from an America few of us can even recall first-hand, back when we still danced with flappers, still spoke of Reds and fascists, still made phonecalls through a switchboard operator. But it's exactly that kitschy history appeal that landed a photograph of the sign on the Web site of a cross-country chronicler of "roadside architecture" — a fine profession or hobby, if I say so myself.

That being said, it's most certainly the sweets that run the show at Oliver's.

"People love candy," says Jeremy. "That's all there is to it."

...and from sweet to salty, my day only got better when I ducked out of the cold sun into the warm dark of O'Lacy's Irish Pub next to Jackson Square.

You could almost smell the mutton from outside. You could almost taste the bitter black porter when you're barely through the door. O'Lacy's doesn't mince words. It's as Irish a joint as they come.

And that's all well and good. I've been to plenty of Irish pubs on this side of the Atlantic and the other. They've all got the beer and the decor to make the claim, sure. But O'Lacy's has the nosh to prove that they dive further into the culture than just a few leprechaun jokes and clovers.

Chicken and biscuits were on special. Beef on Weck was likely a can't miss.

But I'm a sucker for a toasty reuben.

Mine came as thick as an elephant's ankle. It was sloppy, hot and delicious. More man than I am, no doubt. Which was fine, since I felt like more of a man having tackled it. Though I must admit that I couldn't quite wolf down the last scraps of corned beef and sauerkraut (slathered in Thousand Island dressing) that squeezed out of my grasp and onto the plate. As my waitress said: It's quite a sandwich. Maybe next time.


April 30, 2008 - 2:39pm
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, news, Daily News, headlines.

From the Daily News (Wednesday):

• Tuesday night's Batavia City School's performance of Cinemagic showcased the district's "technological capabilities," writes reporter Joanne Beck. The "musical revue" was a hodgepode of forms — including live dance, video and special effects. It foreshadowed a "Technology Site Visit" from national school representatives who will tour the Batavia schools next week to see how they use technology in and out of the classroom.

• A former Batavia resident recounts his first-hand experience of wildfires in Sierra Madre, California. "At one point, it looked like a volcano had erupted and you can see flames and embers floating down," James Monachino told reporter Scott DeSmit.

• Residents can vote on the Richmond Memorial Library proposed budget increase Tuesday at the library's gallery room from noon to 9:00pm. A potential increase of $41,000 is needed mostly to cover the cost of hiring an additional custodian and revamping the library's Web site. The article does not say who is allowed to vote. Library members, city residents, anyone who can get there?

• A former member of the Mighty St. Joe's Drum and Bugle Corps in Batavia will be inducted into the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame. From the article (no author is noted): "Larry Darch of Buffalo has been a leading percussion figure in the Western New York drum and bugle corps community for more than 50 years."

• The YWCA in Batavia will host a brunch at noon on May 10 at Genesee Community College. It appears that the event is connected to the Fabulous Females Committee, but the article doesn't say what that is. This is the 10 year anniversary of the brunch. Tickets are $25. Call the YWCA at (585) 343-5808.

• The Rev. David Scheider was honored with the HomeCare & Hospice Founders' Award at an awards banquet held April 25.

For the complete stories, the Daily News is available on local newsstands, or you can subscribe on


Top Items on Batavia's List

2 bedroom Duplex for Rent

Batavia Rental - 2 Bedroom duplex with stove and refrigerator included. Quiet setting! No pets or smoking. $600/Month plus utilities. Available June 1st. References required. Call Sharon 214-497-8050

Large 2 bedroom apartment in country setting - available 4/1/18 - $825 incl. most utilties

Large 2 bedroom apartment available April 1, all one level living. Rent is $825 includes all utilities except electric. That means heat, water, hot water, trash. lawn and snow plowing are included. Appliances are provided, just updated apartment, good references are a must. There is a no dog policy and no smoking in the apartment. Security Deposit is required (one month's rent). For a showing of the apartment at 8510 Seven Springs Road, Batavia NY 14020, please call 585-343-3755.

Handyman for Hire

Handyman for Hire! Spruce up your house for Spring! Offering painting, plumbing, electrical, demolition, light remodels – a little bit of everything. Owns tools. References included. No job too small. Please call Carl at 585-590-9378 and leave a message.

Front and Back of House Restaurant Positions Available

Looking for all positions for front and back of the house. Servers, bussers, host/hostess, cooks, prep workers, dishwashers, etc. Contact our Executive Chef directly at 7165603683 to schedule an interview. Come join our successful, growing, downtown restaurant.



Copyright © 2008-2017 The Batavian. Some Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license.
Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

blue button