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September 14, 2016 - 8:28pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, news.

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Heather M. Ace, 25, was arrested today and charged with two counts of endangering the welfare of a child, according to a press release from the Genesee County Sheriff's Office.

The arrest comes after an investigation into a structure fire at 8157 State Street Road, Batavia, which occurred on May 20 and claimed the lives of twins Micah and Michael Gard.

The children were inside their bedroom at the residence at the time. The investigation determined that the fire originated either inside of, or in close proximity to, the children's bedroom. The cause of the fire remains undetermined.

Ace is accused of leaving her 2-year-olds home alone inside her residence for a period of time estimated to be about an hour and a half, without providing, nor arranging for, supervision for them.

The case was investigated by the Genesee County Sheriff's Office, Genesee County District Attorney's Office, Genesee County Emergency Management Office and the Town of Batavia Volunteer Fire Department.

Ace was issued an appearance ticket and is scheduled to be in Town of Batavia Court at 1 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 3.                                                                                                                                                                        

UPDATE: 8 P.M.

According to Genesee County Sheriff's Investigator Jerry Brewster, Ace cooperated with law enforcement personnel during the investigation.

"She met with us at the (Genesee County) Jail for processing," he said. "We know the places she went (to), what she did and with whom during that time period. Since charges have been lodged relative to all of this, I am not at liberty to say more at this time.

"I will say, however, that she remained in Batavia. Additionally, she did not go to a bar."

Joe Burke, owner of the home where Ace lived with her sister, and also of the home next door where her parents lived, said the boys deserved better.

"She should have been charged with more than that (endangering the welfare of a child)," he said. "Those little boys certainly had the right to live."

Her parents no longer live next door, having relocated to Stafford, Burke said.

Property owner Joe Burke stands next to the two trees planted as a memorial to Micah and Michael Gard at the State Street Road location. Photo by Mike Pettinella.

September 14, 2016 - 4:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in animal rescue, pets, news, batavia.

(Submitted photo.)

A reader, whose mother lives on Fordham Drive in Batavia, wrote to say this orange and white kitten wandered into her mother's garage yesterday and is desperately trying to go in her house. The feline has a very sweet, albeit persistent, disposition.

Anyone with information -- maybe it's your cat or your friend's cat or you'd like to have this cat or a relative wants a cat-- please call 344-1034. 

September 14, 2016 - 12:44pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news, hlom, GCC, Announcements.

Press release:

The Holland Land Office Museum is hosting a presentation and review of Genesee Community College – The first 50 Years given by co-author Larry D. Barnes. 

This event will be held at the Holland Land Office Museum at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 30. There will be a book signing after the program. There is no cost and everyone is welcome. The museum is located at 131 W. Main St. in the City of Batavia.

The book, written by Barnes and Ruth E. Andes, both faculty members 1968 – 2014, is a history story of a dynamic achievement through innovative programs, workforce development and community involvement. It follows the College from a converted department store with 367 students to more than 7,000 students studying in more than 60 different programs.

September 13, 2016 - 2:38pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, basketball, batavia, BHS.

Batavia Varsity Basketball Coach Buddy Brasky will hold a Basketball Mini-Camp at the Batavia High School gym this fall.

This mini-camp is for boys and girls in grades 8-12 and will be held two nights per week (Mondays and Thursdays).

The camp will start Monday Oct. 3rd and run from 7 to 9 p.m. on each of the following  dates:

  • 10/3
  • 10/6
  • 10/10
  • 10/13
  • 10/17
  • 10/20
  • 10/24
  • 10/27 

This program is for the experienced and serious player only! The program will emphasize offensive skill development. Cost for the program is $125. For more information call Buddy Brasky at 585- 356-4050 or email [email protected]   

** PLAYER MUST BRING THEIR OWN BASKETBALL

September 13, 2016 - 2:27pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, cornell extension, fall gala, news, Announcements.

Press release:

Genesee County Master Gardeners will be hosting their annual Fall Garden Gala from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. this Saturday, Sept. 17, at Cornell Cooperative Extension of Genesee County, 420 E. Main St. in Batavia.

There will be a plant sale featuring hardy perennials, house plants and local field grown mums. Fall is a good time to plant many perennials as they will have several months to grow a strong root system. There will also be a Chance Basket Auction, free soil pH testing and plenty of gardening advice from Master Gardeners.

There will be a “Flower Arrangements from the Garden” demonstration at 11 o'clock. Learn how to artfully arrange fresh flowers from your garden. A variety of fresh flower arrangements created by Master Gardeners will also be available for sale.

Don’t miss your chance to pick up some great plants for your garden! Plant sale starts promptly at 10. No early birds please. Due to the drought, the number of plants we have to offer this fall may be limited. The Chance Auction drawing will begin at 12:30 p.m.

For more information contact Brandie Schultz at CCE of Genesee County, (585) 343-3040, ext. 101, stop by the Extension office at 420 E. Main St. in Batavia, or visit our new CCE website http://genesee.cce.cornell.edu/gardening or Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/CCEofGenesee.

September 13, 2016 - 2:06pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, Oakfield, batavia.

Andrew C. Webster, 23, of Martin Road, Akron, is charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief and second-degree harassment. Webster was arrested at 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 10 on West Main Street Road, Batavia, after allegedly punching and pushing a female acquaintance and damaging her property. He was arraigned in Town of Batavia Court and released on his own recognizance. The judge issued an order of protection and Webster is to have no contact with the alleged victim. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Richard Schildwaster, assisted by Deputy Christopher Erion.

Brittanee Justine Hooten, 27, of Gibson Street, Oakfield, is charged with second-degree harassment. She was arrested following the investigation into a domestic incident that occurred on Gibson Street in the Village of Oakfield at 10:13 p.m. on Sept. 9. Hooten allegedly pushed another subject during the incident. She was arraigned in Village of Oakfield Court and was released on her own recognizance. She is due in Oakfield Town Court on Oct. 3. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Rachel Diehl, assisted by Deputy Kevin Forsyth.

Steven R. Colombo, 30, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with first-degree criminal contempt. He was arrested following a domestic incident at 2:09 a.m. today (Sept. 13) wherein he allegedly violated an order of protection. He was jailed without bail and is due back in court this afternoon. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk, assisted by Officer Felicia DeGroot.

Patrick Thomas Vanbortle, 22, of Ellicott Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree criminal nuisance. He was arrested at 12:17 a.m. on Sept. 11 following an investigation into a large party that occurred on South Swan Street a short time earlier. He was processed and issued an appearance ticket. He is due in City Court on Sept. 20. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Eric Foels, assisted by Officer Felicia DeGroot.

Benjamin D. Tyson, 19, of Clifton Avenue, Batavia, is charged with operating a motor vehicle while impaired by drugs -- first offense, and unlawful possession of marijuana. Tyson was arrested following the investigation into a civilian complaint of the erratic operation of a motor vehicle on Union Street in the City. Tyson was located in a deli parking lot and was issued three traffic tickets and one appearance ticket. He is due in City Court on Sept. 28. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer James DeFreze, assisted by Officer Marc Lawrence.

Tiffany D. Norton, 41, of Holland Avenue, Batavia, was arrested Sept. 11 on a bench warrant after she failed to appear and pay a fine associated with a conviction for aggravated unlicensed operation in the third degree. She was located by State Police while driving in the Village of Bergen and then turned over to BPD. She was put in jail on $250 bail and is due back in court Sept. 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Ivison.

Nathan Samuel Love, 23, of South Main Street Road, Batavia, was arrested Sept. 11 on an outstanding bench warrant out of Batavia City Court. It stems from an incident on Feb. 27 on Ellicott Street, Batavia. He was taken to BPD Headquarters and processed and arraigned in City Court, then jailed on $100 bail. He was due to return to City Court on Sept. 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Kevin DeFelice.

Richard E. Stafford, 75, of Orange Grove Drive, Batavia, turned himself in on an active bench warrant for failure to appear in Batavia City Court on a vehicle and traffic summons issued May 9 on East Main Street in Batavia. Stafford posted $500 cash bail and was ordered to return to City Court on Sept. 14 to answer the charge. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Frank Klimjack.

September 13, 2016 - 1:27pm
posted by Billie Owens in accidents, batavia, news.

A collision between a bus and a motor vehicle is reported at Oak Street and Richmond Avenue. A first responder on scene confirms minor injuries. The bus was occupied by a driver and one passenger. The vehicle had two one occupants. City fire and Mercy medics are responding.

UPDATE 1:45 p.m.: The driver of a red car is being evaluated by medics following the collision. Law enforcement says it appears the driver rear-ended the bus, whose driver and single passenger were uninjured. The car driver is being cited for driving while intoxicated.

September 13, 2016 - 11:42am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Ladder 15, City Fire, batavia, news.

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When I left Batavia High School, where the Genesee Symphony Orchestra was rehearsing last evening, I spotted Ladder 15 over at Dwyer Stadium, so I drove over and found firefighters there doing some training.

September 13, 2016 - 9:40am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, animals, pets.

From our news partner, 13WHAM.

September 13, 2016 - 8:18am
posted by Howard B. Owens in DeWitt Recreation Area, batavia, news.
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     Kyeongseop Woodhams

UPDATED 8:50 a.m.

The 25-year-old man from South Korea whose body was found in the lake at DeWitt Recreation Area on Labor Day went by the name locally of Kevin.

His maiden name was Kim.

According to Det. Todd Crossett, Kyeongseop Woodhams lived in Genesee County and his only family in the United States was his husband. He has not been identified.

His husband reported him as missing to the State Police sometime Saturday, according to Det. Todd Crossett.

The cause of death has not been determined. Investigators are waiting on the results of toxicology tests, which could take a couple of months.

Woodhams was identified first by a person at the scene when his body was found shortly before 9 a.m., Sept. 5. His identity was confirmed with his visa, according to Crossett.

There were items found at the scene, including fishing gear, but Crossett did not specify what other items might have been found. (CORRECTION: We missed the word "not" in the e-mail message from Crossett. We apologize for the error).

Crossett said Woodhams was last seen late Friday night or early Saturday morning.

Anybody with information that may assist in the investigation is asked to contact Crossett at (585) 345-6353.

September 13, 2016 - 6:07am
posted by Steve Ognibene in Oakfield, sports, xc, Cross Country, batavia, steve ognibene's blog.

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The seventh annual Dash in the Dark hosted at Oakfield-Alabama High School, where high school cross-country runners run their races at night under the lights, took place last Friday evening.

Thirty-four schools, more than 1,000 competitors from Section V and VI, and one from Pennsylvania, attended this year's event. 

It's pretty much the "Super Bowl" of cross-country, said Peter Beuler, Oakfield-Alabama-Elba head coach, because the runners start and finish under the football stadium lights and have construction light towers along the course as well to guide them. It's very unique and the kids love it.

The course is a fast, flat, grassy, 1,600-meter loop around the school grounds. Each leg will run two loops, starting and ending inside the football stadium.

Teams consist of three runners. Each school can enter three teams in the Gold Race (fastest race) and unlimited teams in the Blue Race.

Teams will be split up into two divisions depending on school size. 

Medals are awarded to the top 10 fastest individual times, both girls and boys, for both divisions.

Team trophies are given to the top three teams in both divisions in the Gold Race. 

Team awards go to the top three teams in the Blue Race, for both divisions and genders.

For final results go to: http://yellowjacketracing.com/results

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To purchase prints click here.

September 12, 2016 - 2:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in DeWitt Recreation Area, batavia, news.
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     Kyeongseop Woodhams

The young man whose body was found on Labor Day in the lake at DeWitt Recreation Area has been identified by police as 25-year-old Kyeongseop Woodhams.

Woodhams is originally from South Korea and notification of the next of kin required the assistance of Sen. Charles Schumer's office.

The cause of death has not yet been determined and investigators are awaiting results from toxicology tests to see if that provides any clues.

There were no signs of trauma.

Investigators are asking that anybody who may have seen Woodhams between Sept. 3 and Sept. 5 to contact Det. Todd Crossett at (585) 345-6353.

The park opened at 6 a.m. on Labor Day and a fisherman discovered Woodham's body at 8:54 a.m. and immediately called police.

The body was partially submerged. 

A scuba team searched the area where the body was found, in the southeast corner of the lake, behind the land bridge created by historically low water levels, but investigators have not revealed if any items of interest were located.

No further information has been released about Woodhams.

September 12, 2016 - 1:12pm
posted by Billie Owens in Walk to End Alzheimer's, news, Announcements, batavia.

Press release:

The Alzheimer’s Association Western New York Chapter estimates that across Genesee County, approximately 2,000 residents have Alzheimer’s disease or some other form of dementia. It’s further believed that an additional 6,000 family members and friends provide some kind of care for those with impaired cognition.

All those people, as well as professional care providers, have access to the no-cost resources of the WNY Chapter, which include educational programs, support groups, online access to information, support and medical professionals across the county, and other vital programs and services.

The major means of financial support for these services is the annual Walk to End Alzheimer’s, which will take place in Batavia on Saturday, Sept. 24, at the Genesee County Nursing Home (278 Bank St.) starting at 9 a.m.

Hundreds of participants are expected to take part in this important, informative and entertaining fundraiser. A committee of local residents and business and community leaders has been planning Walk for months, helping secure donations of goods and services, recruiting team members and leaders and promoting the event across the county while raising awareness about dementia and the WNY Chapter.

Registration and fundraising can be accomplished online at alz.org/WNY or via a quick phone call to 1.800.272.3900. All registered participants have access to refreshments, entertainment and basket and 50/50 raffles.

Day-of registration is also available from 9-10 a.m., and fundraising can continue through the end of October to qualify for incentives, which include a purple Walk to End Alzheimer’s T-shirt and a gold medal.

The continuing availability of Chapter resources and important research to find ways to prevent, slow and cure Alzheimer’s disease is also funded through the generous support of the corporate world.

Information and easy registration is available online at alz.org/WNY or by calling 1.800.272.3900.

September 12, 2016 - 12:52pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, harness racing, batavia.

(Milky Way on the rail, pulling ahead, with driver Jim Morrill Jr.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Horses trained by Tracy Brainard and driven by Jim Morrill Jr. have been tough to beat over the years and Saturday night (Sept. 10) at Batavia Downs was no exception. That dynamic duo swept both 3-year-old pacing filly divisions of the New York Sires Stakes and claimed the winner’s share of $119,300 in purses.

In the first $60,200 division, Milky Way Rae (American Ideal-Aurora Borealus) was used early and late before grinding out a victory down the lane.

Milky Way Rae left for the lead but was pursued from the outside by American Ivy (Dan Daley) through a :27.3 quarter. By the three-eighths America Ivy had taken a seat third allowing the leader a breather and a :56 half. But before Milky Way Rae could get too comfortable, No Clouds Bluechip (Kevin Cummings) had pulled from fourth with Dime A Dance (Drew Monti) right behind her.

As the trio paced by three-quarters in 1:25, No Clouds Bluechip stalled and Dime A Dance went three-wide around her in the last turn. Starting with a two-length deficit at the top of the stretch, Dime A Dance put on a ferocious drive and took it to the leader, but Milky Way Rae fended off the challenge to win by a nose in 1:54.4.

“The race shaped up good for her because she likes to rock on the front” said Morrill. “I thought she could go in 1:52 tonight on this track but it didn’t come to that.”

It was the fifth win of the year for Milky Way Rae ($13.20) and it boosted her 2016 earnings to $86,674 for owner Fortunate One LLC.

 

(Wishy Washy Girl (#5) with driver Jim Morrill Jr.)

The second $59,100 leg saw Wishy Washy Girl (Roll With Joe-Wish All you Want) trip-out for the win and give the Morrill/Brainard team their second winner's circle presentation.

Wishy Washy Girl left and dropped in second behind Time On My Hands (Ray Fisher Jr.) who was rolling from the pylons. But despite the two being ahead of the field by a good ten lengths, Morrill pulled and tried to go to the front, cutting the quarter in :27. However Fisher would have none of that and he pushed his filly on and made Morrill see-saw his back into the hole.

Between the half in :55.2 and three-quarters in 1:24.4, Art Critic (Drew Monti) pulled and drew alongside Wishy Washy Girl. At the same time, Fisher was highly animated in urging on the front-running Time On My Hands who was clearly running out of gas. This locked in Wishy Washy Girl who was raging with pace until the top of the lane. When the passing lane finally opened up, Morrill popped Wishy Washy Girl through the opening and sped to an instant two-length lead and won in 1:54.4.

“She was good but she would have been a lot better if they went 1:22 to three-quarters” Morrill explained. “That’s why I came out of the two-hole at the quarter, because when they go too slow she’s tough to hold. She was crawling over that horse around the last turn; she was very good.”

The win gave Wishy Washy Girl three for the year and the purse enriched her bank account to $82,328 for owners Michael Cimaglio and Stephen Demeter.

There were also two divisions of the $15,000 Excelsior A series on the card.

Ghost Runner (Art Major-Spirit Of The West) was an easy wire to wire winner in 1:54.1 for Jim Morrill Jr. and trainer Erv Miller. Ghost runner ($2.30) is owned by Dr. Scott Leaf, Deborah Mackenzie, Gerald Fielding and Tom Jackson.

The Morrill/Miller combo also took the second division with Rolling Going Gone (Roll With Joe-Long Gone) in 1:58, and once again wire to wire. Rolling Going Gone ($2.30) is owned by Ross Bonafield.

Driver Jim Morrill Jr. ended the night winning five races.

September 12, 2016 - 12:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia HS, batavia, schools, education, news.

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The future, if not the present, of all aspects of work and life is digital and connected, and to help ensure students are ready to keep pace with a fast-changing world, the City School District is investing in the equipment and infrastructure to help kids succeed.

This morning, Batavia High School began handing out Chromebooks to students.

Chromebooks, running a browser-based operating system from Google, will give students instant access to the world, their teachers, and their classmates as well as provide a suite of software tools they can use for research, study and creation. 

"Whether going on to college or the world of work, you have to know how to gather information, analyze it and interpret it and we're going to be able to help our kids do that at a much higher level," said Superintendent Chris Dailey.

The overall experience of using digital devices will make academic life at Batavia HS more like what students will experience in college, so Dailey thinks those students who continue their education will be better prepared.

"By giving kid a college experience at an early age, when they’re going on, whether it’s to the world of work, military or college, they are on par, if not above, everybody else in our region," Dailey said.

The experience begins in elementary school where students have also been assigned Chromebooks and students participate in classes, such as the one that teaches keyboard skills to students at Jackson Elementary using games for lessons and practice.

The Chromebook rollout culminated in the three-year planning an implementation process that included upgrades to the Wi-Fi network at the high school.

Daily praised IT director Jeff McKinney and his staff.

Students will also be able to take classes in repairing the computers, which will give them, Dailey said, another level of understanding about technology as well as better equip them for their future in work or academics. 

The program is being paid for entirely within the school district's regular budgeting process because there are also cost savings associated with it, such as a reduction in costs for laptops and desktops. 

"A traditional history textbook cost more than these devices, so we can now get that history textbook online, plus all the others, for significantly less than before," Dailey said.

Dailey said he's also well aware that the future of work is based on technology and students need to be prepared for that new world, which in many ways has already changed dramatically.

"My father-in-law owns a printing business and where they used to have eight guys running the press, now they have two and both of them are computer literate because they’re running a computer that is running the press," Dailey said. "Computers are changing everything."

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September 11, 2016 - 3:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Vinyl Record Revival, GSO, music, entertaiment, batavia, news, Asteria Quartet.

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The Genesee Symphony Orchestra hosted a special performance in Batavia Saturday night at Vinyl Record Revival of the Asteria Quartet.

The quartet includes Shade Zajac, the GSO's new conductor and musical director, along with Evie Boughton on the viola, Kiram Rajamani and Leah McCarthy on violin.

The quartet performed Mozart’s 8th Quartet K. 168, Stostakovich’s 8th Quartet, and Zajac’s own composition, “Willard.”

Between each piece, the members took questions from the audiences about the pieces, the performance and the history of the music.

The evening including a wine tasting hosted by Chris Crocker, owner of the YNGodess Shop.

September 10, 2016 - 1:36pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, news, batavia, marksmanship, shooting competition.
Eugene Jankowski Jr., a retired Batavia police officer and president of the Batavia City Council, finished in the top 13 percent among 250 competitors in the 2016 FN 3 Gun Championship. He was awarded High Senior in the Tactical Optics Division.
 
Action-packed 3 Gun is one of the fastest-growing shooting sports in the country right now. Competitors use three different firearms -- a modern sporting rifle; a pistol; and a shotgun. Distances of the targets might vary from 1 yard to 500 yards or anything in between. The shooter who hits the most targets -- and avoids certain "no shoot" ones -- in the least amount of time is the winner.
 
The FN 3 Gun Championship took place Sept. 1-3 at Peacemaker National Training Center located in the beautiful West Virginia mountains near Gerrardstown. Top competitors traveled from all over the United States to compete in this annual event. Video highlights of the event can be found here https://youtu.be/FWrZ4vfnbDM
September 10, 2016 - 11:58am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news, agriculture.

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Timmy Bartz, 8, is selling vegetables he grew at a stand on Bank Street this afternoon.

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