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May 10, 2017 - 1:50pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news.

A woman called 9-1-1 to report "her husband is on a lawnmower, stuck in a lilac tree," says a dispatcher. "We're trying to figure out what's going on."

A first responder is en route to help.

The location is 8156 State Street Road, Batavia.

UPDATE 2:01 p.m.: A state trooper who responded said the family dog's barking alerted the woman to the problem and she called dispatch. Her husband had riden the lawnmower under the tree and a branch landed on his chest, pinning him in and causing the seat to recline (instead of the seat breaking, a safety feature). Because he was stuck in a reclining position, he could not reach the lawnmower's controls. He was stuck like that for about 20 minutes before the trooper arrived on scene. 

May 9, 2017 - 5:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, batavia, abate, Announcements.

May is Motorcycle Awareness Month and the ABATE-Genesee County Chapter is hosting a Motorcycle Awareness Ride and 2017 "Bike Blessing" on Saturday, May 13.

Registration begins at 9 a.m. and lasts until 10:45 at Stan's Harley-Davidson dealership at 4425 W. Saile Drive, Batavia. A free pancake breakfast will be served from 9 to 10 a.m., courtesy of CMA Barnabas Chapter.

Kick-stands up for ride at 11 a.m. The ride will be about 100 miles long.

At the end of the run, food will be available at Ken's Charcoal Pits on Main Street in Downtown Batavia.

Plus, there will be 50/50 raffles and door prizes.

"Bikers make lousy speed bumps. Drive Aware." Come out and ride and get everyone "used to seeing us back on the road for 2017."

Cost is $15 per rider, $5 per passenger.

For more information, email   [email protected]

May 8, 2017 - 6:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in bergen, business, start-up genes.

Start-Up Genesee will hold a “Think & Drink” event focused on starting a business in the Village of Bergen from 4 to 6 p.m. on Thursday, June 22.

Learn about doing business on Main Street; look at successful downtown business operations; tour existing spaces for sale and lease; take a recreational trail tour and make a stop at the Bergen farmers’ market.

It starts at 4 p.m. at the Village of Bergen Office, 11 N. Lake Ave. in Bergen. Meet the Mayor, Anna Marie Barclay, who has made downtown business development and recreation a priority.

At 4:30 p.m., the tour begins. Stop at local businesses, including Pivot Acupuncture and Physical Therapy, Greg’ry’s Bakery, Ralph & Rosie’s, Craft Supplies Unlimited, Luke’s Hair Salon, and the Bergen School of the Arts.

Vacant buildings will be open to visit and see plans for renovations. This will be a good opportunity for businesses looking for space and developers looking for  investiment property to explore options in Bergen.

Then at 5:30 p.m, meet at Hickory Park and check out the interactive exercise trails and disk golf within the village and visit the new downtown farmers’ market.

RSVP by calling Rachael Tabelski at (585) 343-4866 or email her at [email protected]

May 8, 2017 - 6:02pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Area Jaycees, news, Announcements.
The premiere of the Batavia Area Jaycees' Tap Batavia will take place from 4 to 9 p.m. on Saturday, June 10.
This is a roving fundraiser and a portion of proceeds from this event will be donated to Genesee Cancer Assistance to support local residents battling cancer.
Participants pay $35 in advance to get a Tap Batavia T-shirt -- which you must wear to participate -- and tickets for one beer at each of the following locations, valid only between 4 and 9 p.m. on the day of the event:
  • Bourbon & Burger Co.
  • Center Street Smoke House
  • City Slickers Bar & Grill
  • O'Lacy's Irish Pub
  • T.F. Brown's

Plus, pizza and wings, courtesy of T.F. Brown’s, served at T.F. Brown's between 8 and 9 p.m. June 10 only.

*Must be 21 or older to attend this event. *Event T-shirt MUST be worn to redeem beer tickets. *Please Drink Responsibly. *NO REFUNDS.

For tickets, please contact:

Mark Ditzel @ 585-409-7708

Jennifer Shaffer @ 585-409-9980

May 8, 2017 - 5:42pm

Press release:

Come out and support the animals of the Genesee County Animal Shelter. Volunteers for Animals are collecting scrap metal to raise money for the animals one weekend only -- on Saturday, June 3rd and Sunday, June 4th from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Shelter parking lot, 3841 W. Main Street Road, Batavia.

Metal of any almost kind will be accepted this first weekend in June only: railings, doors, garbage cans, file cabinets, bicycle frames, gutters, pipes, poles, fencing, window frames, lawn furniture, tools, shelving, washing machines, dryers, stoves, wheel barrows, wagons, etc.

But they CANNOT take propane tanks, A/C units, or refrigerators!

Scrap service provided by Ed Arnold EAS Scrap Processors, of Corfu.

All proceeds benefit local shelter animals.

May 5, 2017 - 6:25pm
posted by Billie Owens in darien lake, news, darien lake theme park, Darien.

If you took a game like "whack-a-mole" and merged it with a ride that goes up to 20 feet in the air, mixed in some friendly competition, the concoction would be a game known as "Strike-U-Up," which will be one of the new fun options at Darien Lake Theme Park this year.

Western New York's largest family fun zone opens for its 54th season tomorrow, May 6.

Located next to the Rolling Thunder roller coaster, Strike-U-Up straps two riders in special seats as two other people hammer away on large switches at the game's base, propelling the riders in the air. The person to make their partner reach the top first, wins.

Here's a YouTube video of the game at park in Florida:

Slapshot, the other new game, is based on ice hockey, and it's a spinoff of the National Hockey League's Accuracy Challenge.

You don't need ice skates or special clothes. Participants have a set amount of time to shoot a hockey puck at four targets within a regulation-size net. The company All Black Hockey Sticks donated Darien Lakes' supply of hockey sticks. Players can win some neat prizes, including team jerseys. 

The new indoor hockey game is located where the shooting gallery used to be next to the world-renowned Viper, the park's signature steel coaster featuring five inversions, a blackout tunnel and a 70-foot drop that is decidedly not for the squeamish. (A special 35th anniversary party is planned next month for the wicked and beloved Viper.)

Well before, or well after, an engagement on the Viper, or Rolling Thunder -- and its 73-foot high, 20-foot wide steel loop that spins riders clockwise and counterclockwise -- you might want to try one of the new noshes at the park. For example, the big salty pretzels filled with warm, gooey caramel, or a hot juicy beef sandwich from the new Beef 'n' Beer stands, which also serve craft brews.

Loganberry soda is available at some locations in the park thanks to its new beverage partner, PepsiCo., which also sells the ever-popular Mountain Dew in its product line. Loganberry is popular in Western New York, parts of Southern Ontario, Canada, and in merry olde England where it is used to flavor English trifles and the fortified dessert wine, sherry. (But it was created in California by Judge J. H. Logan, of Santa Cruz, who cleverly combined the Aughinbaugh blackberry and red Antwerp raspberry.)

Of course, there are Anchor Bar wings, pizza, and that curiously toothsome ice cream treat, Dippin' Dots.

And let's not forget about all the great music that's in store at Darien Lakes this year, its 25th concert season. To commenorate the anniversary, Darien Lake and Live Nation have teamed up to offer concertgoers at the Darien Lake Amphitheater a free admission ticket to the theme park on the day of the show. 

As General Manager Chris Thorpe says "Where else can you ride coasters all day and rock out all night with the greatest stars in the music industry?”

A total of 23 shows are scheduled, including Lady Antebellum, Goo Goo Dolls, Train, Zac Brown Band, Third Eye Blind, Nickleback, One Republic, Kings of Leon, and John Mayer.

Saturday is designated as Season Pass Holder Appreciation Day, and each season pass holder will get an additional free bring-a-friend ticket good for any day this season, as well as a Buy One, Get One Free discount on the two newest games, four free fun tickets, and a souvenir mug.

The Darien Lake Theme Park complex sits on more than 1,850 acres and features more than a hundred rides; included in the entrance fee is the Barracuda Bay water park with more than 20 water attractions and a huge wave pool. A hotel is next to it and a camp site with 2,000 camping lots and some cabins.

For more information on season passes, concerts or accommodations, visit

May 5, 2017 - 2:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in accidents, Bethany, news.


A rollover accident is reported at 10198 East Road in Bethany. No word on injuries. Bethany Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding. The location is between McLernon and Jerico roads.

UPDATE: Photos by Glenn Adams. 



Bethany Town Supervisor Carl Hyde directing traffic. He is a volunteer firefighter.

May 4, 2017 - 6:20pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire safety, batavia, news, Announcements.

In recognition of May being National Electrical Safety Month, Fire Chief Stefano Napolitano and the City of Batavia Fire Department in conjunction with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) would like to remind all residents of several electrical safety tips.

  • Have all electrical work done by a qualified electrician.
  • When you are buying or remodeling a home, have it inspected by a qualified private inspector or in accordance with local requirements.
  • Only use one heat-producing appliance (such as a coffee maker, toaster, space heater, etc.) plugged into a receptacle outlet at a time.
  • Major appliances (refrigerators, dryers, washers, stoves, air conditioners, microwave ovens, etc.) should be plugged directly into a wall receptacle outlet. Extension cords and plug strips should not be used.
  • Arc-fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs) shut off electricity when a dangerous condition occurs. Consider having them installed in your home.
  • Use ground-fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) to reduce the risk of shock. GFCI’s shut off an electrical circuit when it becomes a shock hazard. They should be installed inside the home in bathrooms, kitchens, garages and basements. All outdoor receptacles should be GFCI protected.
  • Test AFCIs and GFCIs once a month according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.
  • Check electrical cords to make sure they are not running across doorways or under carpets. Extension cords are intended for temporary use. Have a qualified electrician add more receptacle outlets so you don’t have to use extension cords.
  • Use light bulbs that match the recommended wattage on the lamp or fixture. There should be a that indicates the maximum wattage light bulb to use.

Lastly, it is recommended that you call a qualified electrician or your landlord if you have:

  • Frequent problems with blowing fuses or tripping circuit breakers
  • A tingling feeling when you touch an electrical appliance
  • Discolored or warm wall outlets
  • A burning or rubbery smell coming from an appliance
  • Flickering or dimming lights
  • Sparks from an outlet

If a resident has any questions or concerns regarding any of these tips, they can contact the City of Batavia Fire Headquarters at 585-345-6375.

May 4, 2017 - 6:07pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, batavia peace garden, news, Announcements.

Submitted photo and press release:

The Batavia Peace Garden Fundraising Committee, in photo above, is planning the Annual Pasta Dinner Fundraiser. The event will take place from 4 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 25th, at Resurrection Church Hall, located at 18 Ellicott St., Batavia.

The public is invited to attend this gala event. The evening will feature a basket raffle, & 50-50 drawing. Plan to spend an evening of good food, good fun, good company all while supporting this beautiful community garden.

The menu includes a complete meal consisting of penne pasta, meatballs, Italian bread, salad, beverage and dessert. Guests can eat in or take out. We encourage you to obtain your tickets in advance and take advantage of a $1 savings. Deliveries can be made for orders of 10 or more. Advance purchase tickets $8, at the door $9. Meals for children under age 10 cost $5.

Genesee County residence and visitors have been enjoying the Batavia Peace Garden for the past seven years due to the generosity of this community and the dedicated volunteers who help to keep the Peace Garden in bloom. Supporting this event will help to ensure its future.

Tickets can be obtained by contacting Dona Palmer at 585-297-2230. 

May 4, 2017 - 5:49pm
posted by Billie Owens in Grand Jury, indictments, batavia, Pavilion, crime, news.

Christopher R. Stowell is accused of the crime of aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree, a Class E felony. It is alleged that on Sept. 6 in the Town of Pavilion, that Stowell rode a 2006 Suzuki motorcycle in a westerly direction on Route 20 and did so while holding a conditional driver's license and also did so while under the influence of alcohol. In count two of the indictment, the defendant is accused of the offense of driving while ability impaired by alcohol, a violation. In count two, it is alleged that his ability to operate the Suzuki at the time was impaired by the consumption of alcohol. In count three, Stowell is accused of operating a motor vehicle in violation of the terms of a conditional driver's license. It is alleged that at the time he rode the motorcycle, he did so for a use other than authorized by the vehicle and traffic law section (1196-7(a)) of the conditional license. In count four, he is accused of second-degree assault for allegedly recklessly causing serious physical injury to another person by means of a dangerous instrument -- a motor vehicle, in this case, a motorcycle. Also, in Special Information filed by the District Attorney, Stowell is accused of having been convicted of driving while ability impaired by consumption of alcohol on Aug. 16 in the Village of Geneseo Court and that this conviction formed the basis of the conditional license referred to in counts one and three.

Jason E. Carpenter is indicted for the crime of second-degree assault, a Class D violent felony. It is alleged that on Feb. 26 on Liberty Street in the City of Batavia that Carpenter, with intent to cause serious physical injury to another person, caused such injury to a person.

Willie A. Sabb Jr., AKA Willie A. Saab Jr., is accused of the crime of second-degree burglary, a Class C violent felony. It is alleged that on Jan. 29 the defendant knowingly entered or remained unlawfully in a dwelling on Lyon Street in the City of Batavia with intent to commit a crime. In count two of the indictment, he is accused of first-degree criminal contempt, a Class E felony. It is alleged in count two, that on Jan. 29, in violation of a duly served order of protection, he -- with intent to harass, annoy, threaten or alarm the protected party -- struck, shoved, kicked or otherwise subjected that person to physical contact, or he attempted or threatened to do so.

May 4, 2017 - 5:03pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, batavia, Le Roy.

Melanie M. Matesz, 51, of Dellinger Avenue, Batavia, is charged with third-degree criminal mischief. She was arrested at 9:38 p.m. on April 30 on Dellinger Avenue following a domestic incident wherein she alllegedly intentionally damaged property in excess of $250. She was jailed without bail and was due in City Court on May 1. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan, assisted by Officer Eric Bolles.

Marissa M. Lehto, 27, of Washington Avenue, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. At 2:14 p.m. on April 27, Lehto was arrested for allegedly shoplifting more than $200 in groceries from Top's Market on West Main Street in Batavia. She was jailed and due in City Court at a later date. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Marc Lawrence, assisted by Officer Kevin DeFelice.

Elijah J. Richardson, 20, of Maple Street, Batavia, is charged with third-degree robbery, petit larceny and second-degree harassment. He was arrested on April 30. It is alleged that at 4:58 p.m. on April 29 that Richardson forcibly stole property from another person on Thorpe Street in Batavia. He was jailed without bail and was due back in court May 1. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Officer Arick Perkins.

Richard Dean McKague Jr., of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with first-degree contempt and second-degree harassment. He was arrested at 7 a.m. on May 1 on West Main Street Road for allegedly striking his girlfriend during a domestic dispute, in violation of a duly served "refrain from" (contact) order of protection. He was arraigned in Batavia Town Court and released on his own recognizance and is due back in court on June 26. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Lonnie Nati.

The Le Roy Police Department arrested 21-year-old David J. Welninski, of 285 Skyview Drive, Arcade, and a 17-year-old female after a complaint and subsequent traffic stop in the Village of Le Roy. The complaint was received on May 2 at about 7:25 p.m. in which the caller stated she allegedly observed the female in the vehicle wrapping Welninski’s arm and then using a needle to inject him. The vehicle was located on Route 19 in the Village of Le Roy and after a brief investigation, needles and heroin were allegedly found inside the vehicle. Both Welninski and the 17-year-old female were arrested and charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance and criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument and were issued appearance tickets to face the charges at a later date.

Timothy Michael Weinstein, 45, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with first-degree criminal contempt, and aggravated family offense. He was arrested on May 3 after allegedly making several phone calls to a protected party. He was jailed and is due in City Court at a later date. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Andrew ale.

On April 28, Tatiana C. Lugo, 22, of Hutchins Street, Batavia, was arrested and charged with second-degree criminal contempt. It is alleged that on April 24 at 2:42 p.m., Lugo violated a complete stay away order of protection. She was issued an appearance ticket for May 2 in City Court. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Mitchell Cowen.

Elizabeth A. Finnin, 47, of South Swan Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. At 7:18 p.m. on April 29, Finnin allegedly stole a pack of cigarettes from the Family Dollar store on East Main Street in Batavia and was quickly apprehended. She was issued an appearance ticket for May 2 in City Court. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Nicole McGinnis, assisted by Officer Eric Bolles.

James J. Spivey, 19, of Holland Avenue, Batavia, was arrested at 1 p.m. on May 2 on a bench warrant issued out of City Court following his alleged failure to comply with court conditions. He was jailed with unspecified bail and is due in court on May 16. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Mitchell Cowen.

Eric M. Smith, 31, of Iroquois Road, Caledonia, was arrested at 9:22 p.m. on May 1 on a City Court bench warrant. He was jailed on $1,500 bail or bond and was due back in court today (May 4). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay.

May 4, 2017 - 12:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in accident, bergen, news.

A motor-vehicle accident with unknown injuries is reported at 6712 Jerico Road, Bergen. A telephone pole is damaged, possibly down, and wires are hanging, maybe on the vehicle(s). Bergen fire is responding along with two ambulances.

UPDATE 12:15 p.m.: Two vehicles are involved. Byron Repair is called for towing service.

May 3, 2017 - 4:34pm
posted by Billie Owens in byron, bergen, education, news.

Press release:

The Byron-Bergen Central School District is one of 136 school districts and Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) in New York State to receive the Utica National lnsurance Group's School Safety Excellence Award for 2017.

District Superintendent Mickey Edwards and Jr./Sr. High School Principal Patrick McGee accepted the top Titanium-level award and a $500 prize, to be used to further safety efforts, on April 21.

“This is an affirmation of all the safety and security initiatives our district has been taking,” Edwards said. “Our school resource officer recently completed a district-wide safety audit, and he has made remarkable personal connections with our students and staff.

"Our culture includes the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program and regular character building events and activities at all grade levels. We have implemented a number of measures, including the New York State Sheriff’s Association (NYSSA) Rapid Responder® Program, an all-hazards site-based crisis management system, and a large security camera system that oversees buildings and grounds.

"Current security also includes a comprehensive visitor management system in all schools that is used for visitor background checks and ID badges. Providing a safe and secure learning environment for our students, teachers, staff, and visitors is our first priority. We are honored to receive this recognition.”

The School Safety Excellence Award Program has three levels — Titanium, Platinum and Gold — and annual awards are given based on quantifiable measurements of excellence in categories that include bullying prevention programs, playground safety, and other areas. Utica National has kept children and school staff safe for more than 40 years, and currently insures more than 300 school districts in Upstate New York alone.

"Safety and health concerns continue to be a priority in our school districts," said Brian Saville, resident senior vice president in Utica National's Educational Institutions Unit. "Districts that go above and beyond to provide a safe, healthy and focused culture for learning are to be applauded, and we're pleased to count Byron-Bergen Central School District among them."

May 3, 2017 - 4:27pm

Byron-Bergen’s 2017 National Honor Society.

Submitted photos and press release:

The Byron-Bergen chapter of the National Honor Society (NHS) welcomed 16 new student members to their distinguished company on April 26. The ceremony also honored the two latest inductees to the Byron-Bergen Alumni Hall of Fame.

The event began with music from the school’s vocal group, the Singing Silhouettes; welcome and congratulations from Superintendent Mickey Edwards; then short addresses from alumnus Dr. Paul Brill (Class of 1982) and Pam McCarthy, the sister of the late Barry Miller (Class of 1983).

Dr. Brill spoke of his difficult years at school, and credited his teachers, especially Arthur Rohe, along with his older sisters and brother with challenging him to do better.

“There were mentors in my life that helped me change the path I was on,” he said. Today, he is a distinguished neurologist, involved community member, and dedicated husband and father in South Carolina.

Miller was a foundational member of the Bergen community: business owner, volunteer firefighter, and Genesee County coroner, among many other roles. McCarthy spoke of her brother, who was killed in 2015 while performing his duties as the chief of the Bergen Emergency Medical Services.

“He was always looking out for the little guy,” she said. “He touched many lives and made the world a better place.”

Both Barry Miller and Dr. Brill serve as inspirational role models to the youth of Byron-Bergen, and epitomize the purpose of the Alumni Hall of Fame.

National Honor Society President Brittany Rada introduced the second half of the evening, and welcomed guest speaker Coach Rich Krzewinski.

“Always put forth your maximum effort,” he said, “and never give up.”

New NHS members received traditional honor cords and certificates.

National Honor Society membership not only recognizes students for their accomplishments, but also challenges them to develop further through active involvement in school activities and community service. The organization has chapters in all 50 states, Canada, and beyond.

The traditional candle-lighting ceremony, which acknowledges the high standards students in NHS must exhibit in knowledge, character, leadership, service, and scholarship, was performed by students Olivia Audsley and Chase Felton. New members took the NHS pledge and were presented with their honor cords and certificates.

Current Members of the Byron-Bergen National Honor Society: Olivia Audsley, Rose Bower, Cameron Brumsted, Catherine Brumsted, Lauren Burke, Benjamin Chaback, Quinn Chapell, Brionna DeMichel, Chase Felton, Margaret Graney, Justin Hannan, Hayley Hoehn, Brian Ireland, Daniel Jensen, Peyton Mackey, Kelsey Maurer, Celia Mercovich, Makenzie Muoio, , Grace Pulcini, Brittany Rada, Leah Thompson, Dana VanValkenburg, Adam Walter and Michael Zwerka.

2017 Inductees to the Byron-Bergen National Honor Society: Larissa Ashton, Sarah Bleiler, Lydia Campbell, Jean Denson, Adam Drake, Jared Fregoe, Morgan Fuller, Emma Goodman, Annaliese Hersom, William Johnson, Brendon Kendall, Hunter Leach, Erin Parnapy, Sabastian Pawlukewicz, Joshua Phelps and Brianna Shade.

Below: The school’s Singing Silhouettes sang “Build Me Up, Buttercup” to start the evening with music.

May 3, 2017 - 3:59pm

Press release:

The Genesee County Master Gardeners will be hosting their annual Spring Garden Gala on Saturday, May 20, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Cornell Cooperative Extension of Genesee County, 420 E. Main St. in Batavia.

The plant sale features many kinds of perennials, most of which are from Master Gardeners gardens. There will also be a selection of houseplants and locally grown geraniums. Arrive at 10 a.m. for the best selection.

Check out the Basket Auction for garden art, gift certificates and a variety of themed baskets. Bring in a soil sample from your garden for free soil pH testing.  Master Gardeners will be available to answer your gardening questions.

There will be a Container Gardening demonstration at 11:30 a.m. Find out how to create and take care of container garden. At noon there will be a demonstration on how to make your own copper wire hummingbird feeder.

Don’t miss your chance to pick up some great plants, garden art and other interesting items for your garden. Plant sale starts promptly at 10 a.m. No early birds please. Basket Auction drawing starts at 12:30 p.m.

For more information contact Brandie Schultz at Cornell Cooperative Extension of Genesee County, (585) 343-3040, ext. 101, stop by the Extension office at 420 E. Main St. in Batavia. Visit our website at: for more information.

May 3, 2017 - 3:50pm

The Mental Health Association of Genesee and Orleans Counties will hold its annual meeting luncheon from noon to 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 23, at Terry Hills Restaurant. It is located at 5122 Clinton Street Road in Batavia.

This year's recipient of the Constance E. Miller Award of Excellence will be Mark O'Brien (LCSW-R), director of Orleans County Mental Health and Community Services.

MHA of Genesee and Orleans Counties Executive Director Thomas Christensen, Ph.D. (LMHC), will be the guest speaker.

The MHA Educational Scholarship awards will also be presented.

Cost for the luncheon is $20. To attend, please RSVP by May 16 to the MHA of Genesee and Orleans Counties, 25 Liberty St., Batavia. Phone is 344-2611 or visit online at

May 3, 2017 - 3:22pm
posted by Billie Owens in genesee county park & forest, news.

Pictured, from left: Daisy Klein, Lee Johnson, Barbara Easton, George Squires, George Wood, Jennifer Wood and Sharon McWethy.

Submitted photos and press release:

Rainy weather didn’t stop friends and fellow volunteers from honoring Dennis Wood -- artist, professor, and longtime dedicated ACORNS Volunteer. Dennis was a very generous and good friend of the Genesee County Parks in many ways.

He gave his time by participating in ACORNS meetings and field trips, and attending many educational programs. Dennis donated some of his own collections to the Interpretive Nature Center and funded the purchase of children’s field binoculars for use during kids' programs at the park.

Dennis was a very talented artist, and he provided beautiful note-cards for the ACORNS to sell as a fundraiser. The cards feature some of his landscapes and wildlife paintings, and are available for purchase at the Interpretive Center. Dennis loved to share the joys of art as a professor at GCC, and taught a beginner drawing class to the ACORNS as a volunteer training day. Dennis was a delightful person to be around and is remembered for his quiet way of making people smile and laugh.

Following a motion for funding by the ACORNS and a donation from Dennis’s wife Jenny Wood, a fully functional artist’s easel has been created as a memorial to Dennis. The memorial will be placed in the ACORNS Outdoor Learning Center at Genesee County Park & Forest.

The memorial design was created by Paul Osborn, Parks Supervisor, and Kurt Schwab, Genesee County Highway sign maintenance mechanic, which was then laser cut by Oxbo International. Genesee County Highway welder Rob Barone adapted the donated easel to install the newly created art platform, which was then painted by DJ Desjardins in the paint shop. A collaborative effort indeed!

Pictured, from left: Shannon Morley, George Wood, Jennifer Wood, Sharon McWethy, Daisy Klein, Barbara Easton, George Squires and Lee Johnson. 

The Rembas family made a generous donation to the park to honor their father, John Rembas, and their mother, Clara Rembas. John Rembas is remembered by his family for loving the Genesee County Park & Forest very much, thus where the family chose as a donation site in his memory.

Discussions between the Rembas family and the ACORNS proceeded as planning for the ACORNS Outdoor Learning Center was underway. OLC plans included two bird feeding stations, so the ACORNS proposed funding them with the donations received in memory of John Rembas. The family was thrilled with the idea.

ACORNS member Jim Schmitt built two beautiful large platform feeders, and member George Squires designed and built the feeder stations. The bird feeding stations were completed, and the family responded with these kind words: "We cannot thank you - and all the volunteers enough for the time and effort put into this birdfeeder project. We hope it will serve to provide for the many birds, as well as provide enjoyment and learning for all. It is a wonderful tribute to our Mom and Dad."

Thanks to the generous donations in memory of John Rembas, the ACORNS Outdoor Learning Center was provided with two bird feeding stations, a collection of specialized bird feeders, and funding for bird food for the 2017 feeding season.

May 3, 2017 - 3:16pm
posted by Billie Owens in east pembroke, accident, news, batavia.

The NY Thruway reported to dispatch that someone spotted a car off the roadway into a pond in the area of 3323 Harloff Road, Batavia. Town of Batavia East Pembroke fire is dispatched.

"It is in a very wet area of the swamp," by the Thruway, which is the easiest route to access the vehicle.

"It's not totally submerged..." says a first responder.

May 3, 2017 - 2:36pm
posted by Billie Owens in Le Roy, business, Tompkins Bank of Castile.

Tompkins Bank of Castile has promoted Mark Brooks to small business lending manager, following the retirement of Mark Barber.

Brooks has been with Tompkins Bank of Castile for more than nine years, most recently serving as commercial banking officer. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics/finance from Niagara University and an MBA from the Rochester Institute of Technology.

“Mark has been an integral part of our small business lending program for several years,” said John McKenna, president and CEO. “He is committed to helping small businesses prosper and grow, and we’re looking forward to seeing all that he will accomplish.”

Brooks’ promotion coincides with the introduction of the new small business loans program, Lightning Loans. A fast turnaround business loan program, Lightning Loans features a streamlined online application process that allows customers to quickly apply for an affordable business loan and receive a decision in days or sooner.

“Lightning Loans will make it easy to apply for a loan from the comfort of home, but if you would like personal help, our employees and I are available to help you through the process,” said Brooks.

A native of Pavilion, he and his wife, Cherie, reside in Le Roy.

May 3, 2017 - 2:26pm
posted by Billie Owens in east bethany, news, nature, genesee county park & forest.

Submitted photo and press release:

Cutleaf toothwort, trout lily, mayapple...Hike with a naturalist guide on our Wildflower Walk May 6th and learn the names, growing habits, and adaptations of the forest’s first flowers.

Seize the day and enjoy the magic of spring while it lasts! Cameras are recommended!

Wildflower Walk takes place on Saturday, May 6th from 1:30 to 3 p.m. at Genesee County Park & Forest. The walk begins at the Interpretive Nature Center, located at 11095 Bethany Center Road, East Bethany.

Cost is $5/person, $10/family. Preregistration is required. Call 585-344-1122 to reserve your spot.

For more information visit our website at, or contact Shannon Morley at [email protected] or (585) 344-1122.





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