Lt. Col. Scott C. Woodward was installed as the Battalion Commander of the 4th Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment in ceremonies held recently at Ft. Riley, Kan.
The ceremony included a reenactment of the Calvary Charge and the firing of canons. A reception was held at the Custer House, which was the home of General George Armstrong Custer and one of the oldest buildings on Ft. Riley.
Lt. Col. Woodward is a 1989 graduate of Batavia High School and also a graduate SUNY Brockport and the Army Command and General Staff College. He is the son of Tim and Maria Woodward, of Batavia, who attended the ceremony.
His military assignments include three overseas tours: as Battalion Assistant S3 to Bosnia-Herzegovina; he commanded E Troop, 9th Cavalry, 2nd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division during the invasion of Iraq 2003; and he was Battalion Operations Officer, 1st Battalion, 63rd Armor deployed to Mahmudiyah, Iraq.
His most recent assignment was Armor Colonels Assignment Officer, Office of the Chief of Staff, Army, Washington, D.C.
Lt. Col. Woodward’s awards and decorations include: the Bronze Star Medal with “V” device; the Bronze Star Medal (2nd award); Meritorious Service Medal (4th award); Army Commendation Medal (3rd award); Army Achievement Medal (2nd award); the Combat Action Badge; the Parachutist Badge and the Army Staff Identification Badge.
He is married to the former Judith Herring and they have two daughters, Sydney and Savannah.
WNY Aviation Adventure Camp for all ninth- and 10th-grade students interested in learning about aviation, aerodynamics and mechanical sciences will be held July 7-13 at the Genesee County Airport.
Registration deadline is June 22.
This weeklong, overnight camp is a fun-filled opportunity that includes a complete ground school course, some flight time, flight simulator time and field trips to the Geneseo Airshow, Niagara Falls Air Force Base, the Buffalo and Erie County Naval & Military Park and the Rochester Airport!
Join us for the adventure of a lifetime! Cost is $345 per camper for the week and includes all meals and camp T-shirts. The camp will be instructed by certified flight instructors and NYS certified teachers during the day. The nighttime supervision will be provided by camp counselors. A limited numbers of scholarships are available.
Two dogs on River Road were rescued today from a home on River Road, Pavilion, after a fire ignited in the back of the manufactured home while the tenants were not home.
Steven Barnhardt, a neighbor, opened the unlocked front door, and even though the ceiling had black smoke rolling over it, entered the house, let the dogs out of their cages and then yelled to see if anybody was in the house.
"There was black smoke and flames coming out the back window and as soon as I got out, it started coming out of the roof," Barnhardt said.
The fire appears to have started in a rear bedroom and was possibly related to an electrical issue, though no appliances were believed to be running at the time the fire started.
Besides the dogs, two cats were saved, though as of 6 p.m., one was still missing.
While the dogs ran off from the fire scene, they returned later and were reunited with their owners.
The residence is owned by Matthew Janis and his tenants were Cory Harkness and Chelsea Zeluff.
Pavilion Chief Paul Dougherty said that even though the response was quick and most of the house was saved, given the type of construction, it's probably a total loss.
"It's probably easier to move another manufactured dwelling here than reconstruct this one," Dougherty said.
The property is valued at $61,000.
Dougherty said the black smoke from the fire was visible from some distance away and when chiefs arrived on scene, there was fire coming from two back windows and from under the eaves.
The biggest difficulty firefighters faced was the flimsy nature of the floor of the manufactured house.
"A hole was already burned through the floor in one of the rooms," Dougherty said. "Fortunately, there is no basement, so the first guy or two just kind of settled through the floor and they were able to to get themselves out and continue with the suppression."
Mutual aid at the scene included Stafford, Bethany, Batavia's Fast Team, Le Roy, Alexander, Lester, York, Perry, Perry Center and Wyoming.
Dougherty said due to the lack of public water in the area, Pavilion needed the assistance of several of the surrounding department's tankers and crews to help with the water supply.
Genesee County Emergency Services assisted at the scene and with the investigation.
Deputy Brad Mazur is assisting in the investigation.
Batavia PD investigators are still unsure how a 51-year-old resident of 400 Towers fell from a seventh-floor window to his death Tuesday afternoon.
Police officials believe William Hastings was alone in his apartment at the time of his fall.
He fell through the screen of the window, partially tearing it away.
"I was in the parking lot and seen the man falling so I ran over immediately," said 22-year-old Richard Smith. "I called 9-1-1 as I was running. I was the first to get to him. It was a pretty bad thing to see. I'm a little shaken up. It's a hard thing to see. I've never witnessed anything like that in my life."
Medical personal were on scene less than a minute after Smith's call, but there appeared to be little chance to revive Hastings. Less than five minutes after the initial call, personnel were covering Hastings body.
Smith said when he reached Hastings the man didn't appear to be breathing and Smith believes Hastings had already succumbed to the trauma of the fall.
Coroner Robert Yungfleisch arrived a short time later and pronounced Hastings dead.
Lt. Eugene Jankowski said detectives were conducting a thorough investigation, looking into all possible reasons Hastings might have fallen from the window. They were gathering evidence and interviewing witnesses and people who knew Hastings.
'It's still too early to say what happened," Jankowski said.
Hastings was taken to the Monroe County Medical Examiner's Office for an autopsy.
Autopsy findings have not yet been released.
Jankowski said Hastings was married, but he didn't know if his wife lived with him at 400 Towers.
The facility is run by the Batavia Housing Authority and contains 148 apartment units occupied by both senior citizens and people with disabilities.
A 10-year-old child is being taken to UMMC after reportedly inhaling cinnamon. The child lives in Attica and an ambulance from there is meeting up with Mercy medics, who will make the drive to the hospital on North Street in the City of Batavia.
UPDATE 6:58 p.m.: The child inhaled a small amount of cinnamon (either a teaspoon or a tablespoon) on a dare. Inhalers were then used but there was still difficulty breathing. The child is resting comfortably and will arrive at UMMC shortly.
A house fire is reported in Pavilion at 11039 River Road. Fire departments from Pavilion, Stafford, Bethany are responding along with the city's Fast Team. Le Roy firefighters will stand in at Pavilion's hall. A lot of smoke is showing. The location is off Route 63.
UPDATE 5:23 p.m.: More help is on the way from Alexander, Lester, York, Perry, Perry Center and Wyoming.
UPDATE 5:28 p.m.: Fire police from Le Roy are called to the scene for traffic control. Medics are also called, including some from Livingston County. The home is unoccupied.
UPDATE 5:36 p.m.: National Grid is called. Firefighters are trying to shut off the natural gas line now. Several minutes ago, a person described as the homeowner was said to be running up to the house on foot.
UPDATE 5:38 p.m.: At least a portion of the fire has been knocked down.
UPDATE 5:46 p.m.: As firefighters continue to battle the blaze, they are also on the scout for two cats and one kitten that live inside the house.
UPDATE 5:48 p.m.: One of the cats was seen running from the scene and the homeowner has been told this.
UPDATE 5:52 p.m.: With the exception of medics, all responders from Wyoming and Livingston counties are put back in service.
UPDATE 5:53 p.m.: The fire is out. Crews are outside the structure now, rehabing the scene. Alexander and York are also put back in service. Investigators can start their investigation.
UPDATE 6 p.m.: Stafford and Perry are released from the scene. The American Red Cross is called to provide assistance to the residents.
UPDATE 6:04 p.m.: As for the cats, one remains unaccounted for, one is hiding under the house and refuses to be coaxed out. One was rescued after it scampered away from the tumult.
UPDATE 6:08 p.m.: National Grid is on location to shut off the power.
A man reportedly fell from a seventh-story window at 400 Towers, located at 400 E. Main St. in the City of Batavia. The patient is on the ground, unresponsive. City Fire Department, police and Mercy EMS are responding.
UPDATE 3:03 p.m.: City fire is back in service. A person on the outside who saw the man fall is being interviewed by authorities. The man who fell has no identification on him. The window screen was not removed, rather, it tore open when he fell.
UPDATE 4:29 p.m.: The victim of the fatal fall has been identified by police as William Hastings. He lived at 400 Towers and was born in 1960.
Armyworms are on the march and Cornell Cooperative Extension is alerting area farms and residents to be on the look out for the potentially destructive pest.
The worms come out in mass every four or five years, but Jan Beglinger, agriculture outreach coordinator for Cornell in Batavia, said this season's infestation is "one of the worst outbreaks we've seen in years."
The worms munch on grasses and pose a threat to wheat and corn.
Farmers are well aware of armyworms and how to deal with them, Beglinger said, but that doesn't mean they won't have their hands full.
Typically, farmers need to spray infected areas and a border area of 20 or 30 feet to knock back an infestation.
Residents with large lawns should be on the look out for infestations, too. The worms eat grass, but don't eat roots, so lawns should recover; however, homeowners should look in to a lawn-specific pesticide formulated to kill armyworms to help control the infestation.
If a homeowner lives next to a farm and sees an infestation moving toward a field, the courteous thing to do is notify the farmer so he can possibly take protective action, Beglinger said.
Armyworms have been reported from Erie County to Monroe County and every place in between, Beglinger said.
"It's a cyclical insect that comes out every four to five years, but it seems a lot worse this year than it normally is," Beglinger said.
Officials at Western Regional Off-Track Betting (WROTB), the owner of Batavia Downs Casino, announced today wagering handle on the Belmont Stakes was the public benefit corporation’s third-best ever totaling more than $856,000. This is a 12-percent increase over last year. WROTB saw a 16-percent increase on the Kentucky Derby and a 3-percent increase on the Preakness from last year.
“The anticipation leading up to the race was the best in years,” said Todd Haight, OTB’s handicapper and the GM of Batavia Downs Racetrack. “Despite I’ll Have Another‘s late scratch on Friday afternoon, the publicity surrounding the race was enough to pique the public’s interest.”
The race was won by Union Rags, who ran down Paynter in the final furlong of the race. Union Rags will race next in the Travers’ Stakes at Saratoga Racecourse on Aug. 25.
Batavia Downs in owned and operated by Western Regional Off-Track Betting, a public benefit corporation. Municipalities that own Batavia Downs Casino include the 15 counties of Western New York as well as the cities of Buffalo and Rochester. The track is also home to Batavia Downs Casino, featuring 640 video slot machines. Batavia Downs Casino is located less than one mile from Thruway Exit 48 and is open daily from 8 to 4 a.m.
Clifford Leo Regimbal, 33, of Oakfield, is charged with criminal possession of marijuana and unlawful growing of marijuana. Regimbal was a passenger in a vehicle that was stopped at 6:57 p.m. Monday on Route 77, Basom, and allegedly found in possession of a bag containing more than 25 grams of marijuana and a 2-foot tall marijuana plant. Also charged with unlawful possession of marijuana was Ashley Nicole Janikowski, 28, of Oakfield. The traffic stop was initiated by Depty Patrick Reeves.
Jamie R. Bachorski, 18, of Webber Avenue, Oakfield, is charged with endangering the welfare of a child. Bachorski is accused of smoking marijuana with a child May 29.
Amber Michelle Hufsizer, 21, of Newark, is charged with petit larceny. Hufsizer is accused of stealing merchandise valued at $90.89 at Darien Lake Theme Park.
Brad C. Doward, 22, of 10 Hall St., Batavia, is charged with criminal trespass, 2nd, criminal mischief, 4th, harassment, 2nd, and endangering the welfare of a child. Doward allegedly unlawfully entered the residence of a friend, damaged property, had physical contact with the resident, all while in close proximity to a child. The incident was reported at 4:30 p.m. Sunday, and Doward appeared at police HQ at 12:30 p.m. Monday.
Mark W. Nassivera, 21, of Rochester, is charged with criminal mischief, 3rd. Nassivera was taken into custody by State Police in connection with an incident reported at 10:03 p.m. Sunday in Alabama. Nassivera was jailed on an unspecified amount of bail. No further details available.
David L. O'Neil, 22, of 101 Elmwood Parkway, Tonawanda, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. O'Neil was stopped by State Police at 12:29 a.m. Saturday in the Town of Pembroke.
Adam Miller Toy & Bicycles, 8 Center St., Batavia, NY: Feel like a kid in a toy store again, or treat your kids to the greatest toy store they will ever see. We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50.
Alabama Hotel, 1353 Lewiston Road, Basom, NY: A historic and legendary tavern and restaurant. The Alabama Hotel is famous for its fish fries, but also serves a variety of top-quality entrees, featuring Certified Angus Beef. Now with expanded hours. We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50.
Alex's Place, 8322 Park Road, Batavia, NY: People come from all over the region for a fine dining experience at Alex's. It's best known for its ribs, of course, but Alex's seafood is also a favorite of the restaurant's diners. We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50.
Alli's Cones & Dogs, 7063 Lewiston Road, Oakfield, NY: Full breakfast, lunch and dinner menu; all-you-can-eat salad bar; ice cream served year-round; eat-in or take-out. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.
Jagged Edges Salon, 4140 Veterans Memorial Drive, Batavia, NY: Jagged Edges Salon is a walk-in and appointment salon for men, women and children. It is a fun, welcoming salon that offers all hair care services including cuts, color, highlights, lowlights, perms, styling/updos, treatments, and facial waxing. Hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10
Kashmir Cafe, 85 Main St., Batavia, NY; This delightful cafe and coffee shop offers the finest flame-roasted artisan coffee and teas, a wide selection of sandwiches made with the freshest breads, and assorted baked goods. We have a $10 gift certificate for $5.
Kravings, Valu Plaza, 4152 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Kravings offers soups, salads and sandwiches, fresh and flavorful; Monday through Saturday. We have a $10 gift certificate for $5.
Larry's Steakhouse, 60 Main St., Batavia, NY: The name says it all -- Larry's is a great place for steak. Larry's has a fine dining atmosphere with a great menu and outstanding service. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.
Log Cabin Restaurant, 1227 Gilmore Rd, Corfu, NY: Overlooking the picturesque Indian Falls on the Tonawanda Creek, the Log Cabin is known for casual dining, beef on weck, burgers, steaks, prime rib and mouthwatering BBQ baby back ribs. The Log Cabin is located off Route 77, 1.7 miles north of Exit 48 on the Thruway. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.
Rancho Viejo, 12 Ellicott St., Batavia, NY: Traditional Mexican cuisine, from tacos and burritos to pollo norteno, Rancho Viejo brings a bit of "South of the Border" to Batavia's restaurant scene. We have a $20 gift card for $10.
Rosie's Diner, 4974 Ellicott St. Road, Batavia, NY: Serving breakfast and lunches daily. Rosie's features delicious homemade food including Italian and Polish dishes and the freshest homemade soups. "Where good people meet!" We have a $10 gift certificate for $5.
Salsa & Curry, 13 Jackson St., Batavia, NY: An authentic Mexican restaurant, offering all of your favorite dishes from enchiladas and burritos to tacos and fajitas, as well as daily Indian food specials. We have a $20 gift card for $10.
Settler's, 353 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Settler's has a 25-year history of serving great, affordable breakfasts, lunches and dinners to Batavians. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.
Spirits, 78 Lake St., Le Roy, NY. Le Roy's favorite sports bar, where fun and good food are always on tap. Come try one of our many delicious burgers that we have to offer, as well as our HUGE Bomber Sandwich, homemade chicken fingers made to order, and the all-time favorite Dumpster Plate with many choices. We deliver. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.
Viking Valhalla Restaurant & Rose Garden Bowl, 21 Buffalo Road, Bergen, NY: Open for lunch Monday through Sunday, and dinner Friday and Saturday evenings. Dinner favorites are our succulent prime rib and Friday fish fries! We are always happy to help plan your special occasion -- wedding, shower, rehearsal dinner, stag party, graduation, company function, banquet, family or class reunion. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.
Note:If you've never purchased Deal of the Day before, or are otherwise unfamiliar with the rules and process, click here.
There's more to history than can be learned in a book. Sometimes, you've got to be there.
Of course, none of us were alive in 1812. We never fired a musket, skinned a squirrel or tried to survive a harsh winter without gas or electricity.
Reenactors do those things, trying to achieve a degree of authenticity that comes only from a passion for history and an enduring curiosity about how our ancestors did it.
"When you talk to people during these reenactments, you take on the persona of the person," said Tony Consiglio, who does reenactments with his entire family. "It's not just a stage act. They're trying to reach you history by showing it to you and by living it."
Consiglio was at the Pembroke Town Park on Saturday as part of a reenactment group known as the Genesee County Militia.
Founded by Batavia resident John Della Penna in April, the group of 10 people has already mustered for four events with many more on the calendar throughout Western New York in the coming months.
The project centers around reenacting the War of 1812, so the reenactors who have invested in the appropriate garb and equipment will be in their roles for at least four years.
In Pembroke on Saturday, the group included Consiglio and his wife, Laurie, and twin boys Anthony and Vincent, along with Della Penna, Jim Ferris, Beverley Weyhrauch, Brian Seward, Ford Best, Bob Smith and Pete Bosch.
Getting dressed up in costumes for tourists might seem like play acting, but each reenactor takes his or her role seriously. They learn everything they can about the period of history they are portraying.
They take on a role of a person they can identify with -- a farmer, a sharpshooter, merchant, sailor, an immigrant, a Native American -- and work to try and understand how just such a person would think and act that era.
The clothing is as authentic as they can make it -- no synthetic fabrics, but the stuff of the Earth -- wool and leather and cotton.
The muskets may be reproductions, but they're faithful to every detail. What they can't buy, they make.
Reenactors can spend a couple of thousand dollars or more on clothing and equipment, but Della Penna said all that is really needed to get started is the right era shoes, pants, shirt and hat.
The minimum requirement isn't much different from what a farmer or merchant of 1812 might have faced when joining the militia for a 90-day stint. They might have a musket, they probably had a canteen, but beyond that, they showed up for training with the clothes on their back.
"You need the clothes appropriate to the period and the right attitude," Della Penna said. "What we've adopted with the Genesee County Militia is if a guy wants to come in, as long as he's period correct, then that's the way they fell in (in 1812), just with their clothes."
Basom resident Jim Ferris portrays a 19th Century woodsman.
He spent his time Saturday showing families that attended the picnic for Pembroke's bicentennial how to make fire, explaining how to hunt, showing off his weapons, tools and utensils, and giving an expert demonstration on how to throw a knife and tomahawk and hit your target every time.
Like many reenactors, Ferris portrays a role that is appropriate to eras other than 1812.
Nearly all of the reenactors also portray Revolutionary War characters (Rev War, as they all call it), and Della Penna is also a seaman, being attached to the U.S.S. Constellation docked in Boston Harbor.
Militia members, such as Seward, Smith and Bosch, demonstrated how to fire a musket.
The old-school flintlocks gave us a couple of terms that are now cliches today, such as "keep your powder dry" and "flash in the pan."
Loading a flintlock involves pulling out a pre-made paper pouch of black powder, ripping of the top with your teeth, pouring a small amount into the pan, dumping the rest down the barrel and then using the ramrod to stuff the power, bullet and paper down the shaft (no bullets were used Saturday).
Seward said different militia had different standards for how many bullets a soldier should be able to fire in a minute using this method -- from three to five, usually.
Of course, if the powder got wet, the spark from the flint wouldn't ignite it. And it might also happen on occasion that the bullet didn't fire, even though the powder in the pan flashed.
The time Seward and others spent explaining the history and technique of muskets is common for reenactors, Consiglio said. That's why it's important for reenactors to be thorough students of the history they want to portray, right down to adopting period-appropriate political views.
"I run into a lot of people who just never realized all of the reasons of why these things actually happened," Consiglio said. "They don't know the details of the different wars or how they started."
Consiglio said his interest in reenacting was sparked when he was a Boy Scout on a camping trip to Fort Niagara, where a group of reenactors were putting on a demonstration for the scouts. The Akron resident said he also had a fifth-grade teacher who loved to stage historical plays with period-appropriate clothing.
As he got older, he continued to enjoy camping and as he tired of the "glitz and ease" of modern camping, he gravitated toward more primitive tools.
His wife's father is an antique dealer and he acquired a musket that Consiglio started using on his camping trips. In 2009, he was invited to join an reenactment group. A short time later, he invited his wife to join in and then his children when they were old enough.
Della Penna said Vincent and Anthony are really smart, kind children who help attract visitors to the camp.
The boys do draw interest, Consiglio said, but it's also just a hobby the family can enjoy together.
"It allows me to enjoy my family doing what I like to do instead of feeling that I'm away from them doing my own thing," Consiglio said.
It's also an educational experience for the boys.
"It teaches them what people went through in the early days to build this country," Consiglio said. "It's a chance for them to learn how to manage a lot with a little."
As for Consiglio's charcter, he portrays a man from Kentucky who relocated to the Batavia area, drawn by the land grants available through the Holland Land Office.
Back then Batavia was hailed as an area of opportunity, he said, and his charcter traveled here trying to better himself.
Rather than act out some role in history, typically the reenactors invite visitors into their camps, their tents, their lives as their characters would have lived them.
Militia members even let some visitors fire their muskets, which is what American Legion members Tony Kutter and Richard Beal got to do under the instruction of Seward and Smith.
Kutter, a veteran of the Korean War, thinks reenactors have an important role to play in educating the public.
"Of course, a veteran of the Civil War, if you've seen all that carnage, the last thing you would have wanted to do was reenact it," Kutter said. "It is part of our history and people should know.
"A lot of time we don't learn from our history. We get carried away by our emotions. I think it's very interesting. It's part of our history and our heritage."
PHOTOS: Top, Jim Ferris; first bottom photo, Jerry Fulmer; second, Pete Bosch, Tony Consiglio, Bob Smith and Brian Seward fire their muskets; third, Tony Kutter and Richard Beal look on as Smith loads his musket; fourth, 19th Century dining inside the tent of Jim Ferris; inset photo, a file photo from the Peace Garden dedication of John Della Penna. First photo in the slide show below is Vincent Consiglio.
If you're unable to view the slide show, click here.