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March 9, 2014 - 9:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in thebatavian, top posts.
March 8, 2014 - 11:55pm
posted by Nick Sabato in sports.

Have you ever heard the phrase "It’s not how start, it’s how you finish"?

Well, today that didn’t turn out to be true, as Sherman used a monster first half to end Notre Dame’s spectacular postseason run, 57-52.

The game began with both teams struggling to find their rhythm on offense, but Sherman found their touch midway through the first quarter, using a 13-0 run to end the period.

In the second quarter the Wildcats picked exactly where they left off, outscoring the Fighting Irish 24-15, shooting 10-of-20 from the three-point line in the first half to take a 40-20 lead into the locker room.

While Sherman couldn’t miss, Notre Dame struggled to make baskets, as they shot just 26 percent from the field during the first 16 minutes, while Tim McCulley went 0-for-7 in the first half for just two points.

“They shot the ball extremely well,” Notre Dame Head Coach Mike Rapone said of Sherman. “I don’t think we defended like we have been. We gave them a lot of open looks but they knocked them down. You have to give them credit; they shot the ball extremely well. We tried every defense and it just didn’t work.”

The Fighting Irish also struggled to handle the Sherman press, as they committed 12 turnovers in the first half.

The lone bright spot in the first half was junior Josh Johnson, who scored all 13 points in the first half, including eight in a row during the second quarter.

“Josh had a really good game,” Rapone said. “He played really well tonight. We needed more offense in some of the spots than what we got and that was the difference.”

Notre Dame came out strong to start the second quarter, getting two quick baskets and a steal, but they failed to get that third shot in a row to fall, and the Wildcats quickly pushed their lead.

That would be a theme throughout the second half, as the Irish cut the Sherman lead to 10 early in the fourth quarter, but two quick baskets pushed the lead back to 15.

“That was the story of the whole game,” Rapone said. “We weren’t as mentally focused as we have been. We were supposed to be doing certain things that we didn’t do. I’ll take that load. I’m the coach, I’m supposed to make sure that they are in the right sets. We didn’t do what we talked about doing and that’s why we got beat.”

While the team struggled to remain consistent, McCulley struggled to find his offensive touch in the third quarter. He made his first basket of the contest with just two minutes left in the third quarter.

“Their wings were up on my side,” McCulley said. “So I wasn’t able to get a shot from the 3-point line or off drive and kicks. It was just tough to score.”

After a torrid first half, Sherman cooled off from the field in the second half, shooting just 5-for-24 from the field and 3-for-12 beyond the arc.

Andrew Graham, who entered as the Wildcats’ leading scorer, went just 1-for-7 in the second half after scoring 12 of his 14 points in the first half on 4-of-7 shooting beyond the arc.

Unfortunately for Notre Dame, they shot just 32 percent from the field in the second half, and the one statistic they own in the first half was matched by the opposing team in the second.

Sherman was out-rebounded 44-27 for the game, but they managed to grab six offensive rebounds in the second half that doomed the comeback dreams by the Irish.

“Rebounding in the third quarter killed us,” Rapone said. “At least four times they missed the first shot and got the ball back. Even if they didn’t score, they would run 20 to 25 seconds off the shot clock. So, second half rebounding, and especially in the third quarter really hurt us.”

The loss came as a surprise to many people after winning 10 games in a row and 15 out of the last 16.

McCulley entered the game with a 12-game streak in which he had notched at least 20 points, while Alec Covel had reached double figures in six straight games.

The two seniors combined to shoot 5-of-23 for the game and turned the ball over 10 times.

“It’s a little easier to accept to go out and play a strong game and get beat somebody else that plays a strong game,” Rapone said. “They played a strong game and we didn’t answer it. When that happens, you have to give credit to the opponent. Whatever they did worked well for them so we have to give them credit.”

Notre Dame clawed their way back late in the game, cutting the lead to just five but they simply ran out of time and ran out of magic.

McCulley finished his last high school basketball game with a team-high 15 points, 11 rebounds, two steals and two blocks. He ends his career with 1,210 points on 452 made field goals and 424 rebounds.

“It was a hard game to get to the hoop,” McCulley said. “They played good defense and we didn’t get a lot of good looks.”

Johnson finished with 13 points, six rebounds and three steals while Caleb Nellis scored 10 points and pulled down seven rebounds.

Sherman (21-1) will advance to the state semifinals in Glens Falls next weekend after getting a game-high 22 points on 5-of-9 shooting beyond the arc from Ryan Robson. As a team, the Wildcats connected on 13 three-point field goals.

Meanwhile, Notre Dame (19-4) hadn’t allowed more than 50 points since Feb. 12, and it was only the fourth time all season that they had scored less than 55 points in a game.

This was the first loss in a Far West Regional under Mike Rapone, as they had won their first five.

Photos by Howard Owens.

To order prints of photos, click here.

March 8, 2014 - 5:42pm
posted by Alecia Kaus in animal rescue, east bethany, Bernese mountain dog.

"We thought she was dead. Everytime I see her I can't believe she's here," says Jason Duffy.

Duffy and his wife, Christina, brought Willow, a 3-year-old Bernese mountain dog, home to live with them Nov. 11 after picking her out at a breeder's home in Ontario County.

After only living with the Duffys for a day, Willow charged the front door as Christina opened it about 5:30 that evening. Willow then took off outside and did not respond to Christina's calls.

After about an hour, Jason Rutkowski, a neighbor, decided to help out using his ATV to check the wooded areas and fields near the Duffy home in East Bethany.

Christina and Rutkowski battled a snowstorm and cold temperatures until about 10:30 that evening without any luck.

After returning home from work that night, Duffy decided he would place an advertisement in the local Pennysaver and then blanket the area between Route 5 and Route 63 with fliers.

Three weeks went by and the Duffys finally got a lead on Willow's whereabouts.

They received a tip call from hunter Dave Hofert.  

Hofert was hunting on his property near the Batavia Party House and recognized the dog from the Pennysaver advertisment. Willow was spotted in a wooded area near an old rail bed behind the Party House.

Duffy searched the area for about a month, but there was no sign of Willow.

In mid-December he and Christina had lost hope.

With no other calls or leads, Duffy gave up and stopped calling around to local shelters and the couple decided to get another Bernese mountain dog to replace Willow.

Around Christmas, the Duffy's brought 5-month-old Shyla into their home.

The first week of February, the Duffys got a second tip call about Willow. This time from a coyote hunter who had found a den where Willow was bedding down. The den was located near the old rail bed behind the Batavia Party House close to where the first sighting had been.

Duffy immediately went to the area.

This time, Duffy was able to see Willow, but when he tried to call her she would not come to him. So every day for a week Duffy would go to her den located only a few miles from their home and feed her. Then he found a second den that she had made that was closer to the edge of the wooded area.

That's when Duffy decided to buy a live trap for $450 and set it up next to the den with some food.

"I covered it with twigs and put some raw chicken cutlet in with the dog food. The next day I knew she would be in the cage," Duffy said.

Willow has been home now for about a week and is fitting in very well with her new family.

She especially likes the leather couch and has claimed it as hers.

"She took to Shyla right away, they are like best friends," Christina says.

Duffy says, "Willow was a little skittish at first and she's still getting used to us, but she knows her name when I call her now. She has lost a little weight, but looks good. We dewormed her and gave her some antibiotics and she is good to go now."

Bernese mountain dogs are cold-weather dogs. But according to Duffy, Willow has lived in the house all of her life and has never had to fend for herself. He thinks she was living on rabbits and squirrels.

As to why she took off on Christina that snowy day in November?

Duffy thinks Willow may have been heartbroken when she was moved from the breeder's home in Ontario County. He thinks she was missing another dog she was bred with.

Married 15 years, the Duffys now have a second addition to their household.

Along with working their full-time jobs, the Duffys also run a goat farm at their home with 30 goats. The couple started the Duffy Fainting Goat Farm in 2010. The farm specializes in Myotonic and Nigerian dwarf goats. They also breed Great Pyrenees dogs.

"We love our goats and our dogs, they are part of our family," says Duffy.

(Top photo: Christina Duffy)

From left: Willow, Christina, Shyla and Jason Duffy.

Den that Willow has called home since November 2013. (Photo by Jason Duffy)

March 8, 2014 - 11:11am
posted by Billie Owens in Deal of the Day.

Dave's Ice Cream, 3872 W. Main Street Road, Batavia, NY: Dave's offers only locally purchased products, including Perry's hard ice cream in a wide variety of yummy flavors, with a wonderful assortment of toppings and homemade waffle cones. Different soft-serve flavors are offered weekly. We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

Daphne's Restaurant & Lounge, 241 Swan St., (Off Rt. 63/Ellicott St.) Batavia, NY. Daphne's is destined to become a favorite for any who enjoy something special in a dining experience. Formerly the old St. Nick's Social Club, now unrecognizable to those who used to frequent the club, Daphne's provides you with a warm, inviting atmosphere and decor, which complements the array of wonderful dishes. We offer homemade seafood and pasta dishes, meatballs that are addicting as well as large salads, hot sandwiches & homemade potato chips. Fresh desserts are prepared in our own kitchen (tiramisu has been the top seller so far). We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Santino's Pizza, 2 Main St., Oakfield, NY: We're pizza and a whole lot more! Voted #1 pizza in Genesee County in blind taste test! Santino's features pizza, wings, subs, wraps, ice cream, and more! We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Bohn's Restaurant, 5256 Clinton St., Batavia, NY: Fine dining in an atmosphere of casual elegance. Lunch and dinner, steak, prime rib and seafood. Ask about Bohn's catering services and banquet facility. We have a $25 gift certificate for $15.

Center Street Smoke House, 20 Center St., Batavia, NY: Authentic Southern BBQ, from ribs to brisket with all the fixin's. We have a $20 gift card for $12.

Clor's Meat Market, Catering & BBQ, 4169 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: For the best, most flavorful, juiciest chicken or hamburger in town, hands down, stop by Clor's. Oh, and the steaks are great, too. And the sausage. Clor's is under new ownership and now offers baked goods, pizza, wings, delivery service, and catering. Clor's also serves lunch and dinners from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew, 9 Main St., Le Roy, NY. The kind of downhome, laid-back and comfortable place that just feels right. Open daily for lunch, dinner and drinks, this eatery and bar features a variety of eats and drinks that are outstanding. Specializing in smoked meats -- each meat is dry rubbed with a proprietary mix of seasonings, then smoked slowly in their on-site smoker for maximum flavor and tenderness. With a variety of appetizers, burgers, sandwiches, wraps, combo platters and entrées, there's always plenty of choice for even picky eaters. Great food, frosty brews and some of the best folk around call the Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew their favorite -- make it your favorite today! Don't forget to ask about our catering! We have a $20 gift card for $12.

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 $15.

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 $12.

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.

O'Lacy's Irish Pub, 5 School St., Batavia, NY: In Irish pubs, it doesn't get more authentic than O'Lacy's. Be sure to try the homemade chips. We have a $25 gift certificate for $15.

The Color Salon, 35 Center St., Batavia, NY: Our attention to detail, combined with the focus on precision haircutting techniques will ensure that your hair will be your best accessory when you leave The Color Salon. We offer all hair care services including cuts, color, highlights, up-dos, as well as waxing services. We carry products such as KMS and Paul Mitchell. Now available: Bella Taylor purses! We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50.

T.F. Brown's, 214 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: T.F. Brown's is a great place for a good meal, good friends and to catch up on what's going on in the sports world. "If it happens in sports, it happens at Brown's." Stop in and check out our Jumbo Chicken Wings, Roast Beef on Weck and Friday night fish fry. The original family spaghetti sauce still adorns all of our Italian specialties. The other popular selections from our menu range from Super Salads, butcher cut Strip Loin and South of the Border items. We offer daily lunch and dinner specials as well as a full adult and children’s menu. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Scooter's Restaurant in Le Roy, 140 W. Main Street Road (Route 5), Le Roy, NY: Come see us at Scooter's family restaurant with our friendly atmosphere and homestyle cooking! We offer classic American food with breakfast, lunch and dinner served all day. We also offer a full take-out menu anytime. We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

Blue Pearl Yoga, 200 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: Stretch your body and soul with yoga. This offer is for a $25 gift certificate for yoga instruction. Not good with any other offers or discounts. Cost of the gift certificate is $12.50.

Oliver's Candies, 211 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Oliver's, a Batavia landmark, offers the finest chocolate and confections in the area. We have a $20 gift card for $12.

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 $12.

Bourbon & Burger Co., 9 Jackson St., Batavia, NY: Batavia's newest burger joint offers more than two dozen different types of tasty hamburgers. Our menu also includes a variety of sandwiches, appetizers and an extensive beer list, plus a full bar. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Viking Valhalla Restaurant & Rose Garden Bowl21 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 $12.

Casa Del Taco, 234 Ellicott St., Batavia, NY: Mexican food lovers will delight in this new eatery that makes tacos and burritos "the way you want 'em" plus it offers other items like taco salads, burrito bowls, loaded nachos, churros, and chili. Choose from a variety of toppings, including jalapenos, black beans, cilantro and guacamole. There are also several varieties of salsa to select from, such as corn, mango, verde, and sweet Thai ranch. Hours are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday thru Saturday; closed Sunday. We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

Sweet Ecstasy Bakery & Bistro, 201 E. Main St., Batavia, NY. A retail and special-order bakery and cafe located in Downtown Batavia inside Seymour Place. Offering a wide variety of items such as cookies, filled cupcakes, quick breads, pies, breakfast pastries, daily. On Fridays, it offers fresh artisan bread like baguettes, sourdough and rye starting at noon. The custom cakes are out of this world with 3D characters or gorgeous wedding cakes to suit any budget. For all your sweet treats, we have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

Sammy Hill's, 7 Mill St., Le Roy, NY: This new restaurant has good, fresh food, including hand-pressed burgers, and a friendly atmosphere. Choose a house specialty burger or make your own with a variety of toppings, cheeses and sauces to select from. The menu also includes flatbread sliders, garbage plates, shredded beef or marinated chicken tacos, sandwiches like the Cuban, bruschetta chicken, or deep-fried pork loin. Friday fish fry -- battered, broiled or blackened. Dine in or take out. "Come Get Some!" Hours are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., closed Monday. We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

Ficarella's Pizzeria, 21 Liberty St., Batavia, NY: Dine-in, drive-thru or delivery. Featuring fresh, hearth-baked pizza since 1985, plus wings, pasta and more. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12. (Good only at the Batavia location.)

SOLD OUT

March 8, 2014 - 10:03am
posted by Billie Owens in Milestones, ron bilby.

You're not a kid anymore and you're full of experience. 50 is a great time to let everybody know it. (His birthday is Sunday, March 9.)

Happy Birthday Ron Bilby!

Love, your family

March 7, 2014 - 7:09pm
posted by Nick Sabato in basketball, sports, high school sports, Notre Dame.

Saturday’s New York State Class D Far West Regional contest will feature two programs that are no stranger to the magnitude of the game.

Notre Dame is appearing in the Far West Regional for the sixth time in school history, and the second in three years. Meanwhile, Sherman will be representing Section VI for the second-straight year.

While Sherman returns their top three scorers from the team that fell to University Prep a year ago, Notre Dame has a vastly different look from the team that advanced to the state semifinals in 2012.

Tim McCulley started in 2012 as a sophomore, but he is the lone returning player from that team. But, the Fighting Irish may not need to rely on his experience too heavily.

“They’re always talking to him about this and that,” said Notre Dame Head Coach Mike Rapone. “They’re going to use him, but they are experienced enough now that they should be ready to go.”

The Wildcats will look to continue to rely on their hot play over the course of the season, along with their experience from a year ago.

“We lost to U-Prep last year in this game,” said Sherman Head Coach Cory Emory. “But we returned pretty much our whole team, and we worked hard in the off-season. We had a lot of games that were close and then we had a run and were able to stretch the lead.”

Both teams come in on a roll, as the Fighting Irish have won 10 straight games, and 15 out of 16 since the New Year, while the Wildcats come in 20-1 on the season and are winners of nine in a row.

Notre Dame will undoubtedly be led by McCulley, who is averaging 23.7 points per game, 8.7 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 2.8 steals and two blocks per game this season, but as of late he is getting some help from his teammates.

While McCulley has reached 20 points in each of the last 12 games, senior Alec Covel has been in double figures in six straight to give the Irish another scoring threat.

“[McCulley] scores points so many ways,” Rapone said. “With Covel stepping up and becoming more assertive on the offensive end, it takes away those junk defenses that teams play against us.”

Unlike Notre Dame, Sherman will not rely on their interior play, but with the play of their guards.

Senior guards Andrew Graham and Ryan Robson are the team’s leading scorers for the second-straight year, with Graham averaging 14.8 points per game and Robson averaging 12.8.

“We could be a little contrasting in playing style to Notre Dame,” Emory said. “We aren’t very tall and we like to press in order to take advantage of our quickness.”

Their top inside player, Jake Card, only stands 6-foot-2 and comes in averaging 9.5 points per game and 9.1 rebounds per game.

Many people may remember Sherman from a season ago, as their girl’s squad fell to Notre Dame in the Far West Regional.

They also may remember some controversial comments from Sherman girls' coach and athletic director Mel Swanson, who expressed his displeasure with private schools playing public schools following the game.

''It is tough. It's an inequality,” said Swanson of Notre Dame. “Their players played hard and they were very good players and they did great things with the basketball. But when you're a small school like ours that graduates 30-something kids and you have to compete at that level it's just such a different field they get to draw from."

It’s an ongoing debate statewide, as Section VI does not allow private schools to participate in sectionals. However, Emory does not care who his boys play.

“Whoever we end up playing is who we end up playing,” Emory said. “Is it fair? That’s up for debate. You can go around and around on that topic. But we play who we play, and at this level, whoever we play is probably going to be pretty good.”

Rapone and the Fighting Irish will be focusing on how to stop the Wildcats on Saturday, and advance to Glens Falls.

“They have been there once before and have the experience,” Rapone said. “They use a lot of presses and a lot of traps. It’s something we haven’t seen a lot of, so we will have to get to work on that so everyone knows what their job is.”

Notre Dame and Sherman will square off on Saturday at Buffalo State College for the opportunity to advance to the state semifinals in Glens Falls. Tip-off is scheduled for noon.

March 7, 2014 - 6:52pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, business, weather, Dave's Ice Cream.

It's gotta be some sort of sign that spring is near when Dave's starts selling ice cream.

Owner Debra Webster would have opened a week ago, but she couldn't even get the ice off the parking lot. Finally, the parking lot is clear and the doors are open.

Webster has been in the ice cream business for 28 years, starting at the location that is now Dave's when she was 16. Six months later, she was the manager (it was Brenden's then) and working full time even while attending high school.

In 1995, she bought her first ice cream shop, an Abbott's Frozen Custard franchise in Brockport, which she still owns. Eight years ago, she bought Brenden's and changed the name to Dave's.

March 7, 2014 - 5:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, downtown.

It might not be quite spring cleaning, but with snow melting and the sun out, two city workers patrolled Main Street Downtown this afternoon looking for any litter that may have become visible. They are Shawn Easton and Shawn McAlister.

March 7, 2014 - 4:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, bank of castile, business, GCEDC, liberty pumps, bergen.

Press release:

The Board of Directors of the Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) approved applications for two projects at its March 6, 2014, board meeting. 

The Bank of Castile/Tompkins Trust Company is purchasing a building located at 113-119 Main St. in the City of Batavia and plans to renovate the second floor (10,000 square feet) into a call center for its expanding operations because of limited space in its current location in the City of Batavia. The company also plans to maintain the first floor and continue renting space to current lessors. 

The company was approved for a sales tax exemption of approximately $53,600 and a property tax exemption of approximately $27,800 to expand its existing facility. The planned capital investment will total an estimated $1.5 million dollars and is projected to create two new jobs.

Tompkins Trust Company built a new 18,000-square-foot headquarters in the City of Batavia in 2004, investing more than $2.9 million dollars. The company had pledged to create 63 new jobs; as of 2012, it had created 74 jobs.

Liberty Pumps is planning a 100,000-square-foot expansion of its existing facility at Apple Tree Acres in Bergen, NY. The renovation will include new spaces for production, warehouse, research and development, as well as an office, auditorium and training center. An initial resolution for Liberty Pumps was approved to set a public hearing as the total amount of incentives exceeds $100,000. The capital investment for the expansion project is $9.8 million and will create 27 new jobs while retaining 124 employees at the facility.

In 2000 Liberty Pumps invested $3.7 million for the acquisition of the land and construction of a 60,000-square-foot manufacturing facility. It underwent another expansion project in 2008 which entailed the investment of an additional $4 million for the construction of a 64,000-square-foot addition to the existing facility.

“It’s great to see companies that our agency has assisted with in past, come back to us with plans to expand their operations and create even more jobs in our region,” said Wally Hinchey, GCEDC board chairman.

March 7, 2014 - 4:07pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, accidents.

A car just rammed into the back of a school bus at East Main and Vine streets. Unknown injuries, but no children are on the bus. Batavia fire and Mercy medics are responding.

UPDATE 4:28 p.m.: The assignment is back in service. There were no injuries.

March 7, 2014 - 4:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia PD.

At 7 a.m., when Officer Kevin DeFelice came on duty, it was about 20 degrees, but the forecast was for sun, so DeFelice, the officer in Batavia PD assigned to bike patrol, decided it was a good day to hop on two wheels rather than toil behind one.

DeFelice spent his shift on the bike on a day where the high eventually hit 35 degrees.

With the sun out and the snow melting, it did feel like spring, even though the forecast makes tomorrow look more like a temporary reprieve rather than an end to winter. There's a chance of snow the following six days in the forecast, but no anticipation of the unrelenting, bitter cold that has been such a part of this winter.

DeFelice can get around the city pretty quickly on his bike. After the shot above, he rode out to East Avenue near Clinton to assist with a traffic stop on a vehicle that matched the description of a warrant suspect (turned out to not be the person police were looking for). 

March 7, 2014 - 3:36pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, GCEDC.

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) held its annual meeting at Genesee Community College to unveil the organization’s 2013 annual report. During the meeting, Genesee Community College (GCC) was honored for its collaboration in the community as it received the Economic Development Partner of the Year Award from the GCEDC.

“Because of the strategic leadership of the public and private sectors in 2013, the economy of Genesee County remains strong and the business climate continues to remain positive,” said Wally Hinchey, chairman, GCEDC. “I am confident that the GCEDC, the County, and our municipal partners will continue to work together to make business attraction and expansion a priority for 2014, and am proud to recognize GCC as the GCEDC partner of the year.”

The college was recognized for its role in executing strong economic development and workforce programs for the region. In collaboration with the GCEDC and the Best Center, it has helped more than 80 students graduate with certificates in advanced manufacturing/nanotechnology and food processing technology. These graduates have found local employment in industries they would not have thought to pursue. GCC will continue partnering with the GCEDC by implementing new degree programs to support numerous businesses, industry training programs and attraction efforts, as well as the START-UP NY program run by the college.

The approximately 300 people in attendance also were provided an update on developments at the Science and Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park (STAMP) in the Town of Alabama by Mark Peterson, president and CEO of the Greater Rochester Enterprise and Thomas Kucharski, president and CEO of the Buffalo Niagara Enterprise.  Both participated in meetings last month with representatives from the GCEDC and organized labor to advocate on behalf of STAMP with members and staff from Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office and members of the New York State Senate and Assembly.

The state has listed the STAMP project as a top economic development priority and has released $5 million in funds to move the project forward, but still $33 million is needed to make the project shovel-ready lite. The project, which has the potential to create thousands of new jobs, has the support of labor unions and the business community from Buffalo and Rochester, along with senators and assembly members in the Finger Lakes and Western New York regions.

“Going into 2014, it is critical that we continue to sustain this year’s great achievements and reach the goals we have set for growth and development in the county,” said Steve Hyde, president and CEO of the GCEDC. “We will continue to ramp up our sales and marketing efforts for STAMP to attract large-scale semiconductor and high-tech companies to the site.”

March 7, 2014 - 3:11pm

 

   The Batavia City School District is pleased to offer the Universal Pre-Kindergarten (UPK) Program for students and will continue to operate the program in the 2014-2015 school year, pending State funding. UPK provides an opportunity for four-year-old children to be involved in half-day, developmentally appropriate educational classes at no cost to their families. The District offers morning and afternoon programs, Monday through Friday, during the school year. (If the YMCA is selected to be the Community Based Organization to provide UPK in 2014-15, there will be an option to select a “wrap around” program consisting of Child Watch in the morning followed by UPK in the afternoon from12:30-3:00, then School Aged Child Care afterward. There would be a charge for the morning Child Watch and afternoon Child Care programs.) If new State regulations are passed, the District may offer a full day UPK program in the 2014-15 school year.

   Children who are residents of the District, are four (4) years of age on or before December 1, 2014, and who are not enrolled in a special education program with the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership (GVEP) are eligible to apply. Letters/applications have been mailed to all known eligible families, but also are available at the District Registrar Office in the administrative wing of Batavia High School, or by calling 343-2480 ext. 2008. They can also be downloaded from the District’s website, www.bataviacsd.org, by using the pull-down menu at the top of the page labeled “Parent,” or the Quick Link labeled “Parent Resources,” then clicking on the link for Universal Pre-K.  Applications should be returned by April 4, 2014, however, late applications will be accepted if there is an opening.

March 7, 2014 - 12:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire safety.

Press release:

Remember that as you change your clocks ahead on Sunday, March 9, it’s the perfect time to change the batteries in home smoke detectors and carbon-monoxide detectors, as well.

Even “hard-wired” smoke detectors that are plugged in to the home’s electrical supply typically have a nine-volt backup battery to keep the detectors operating in case of a power outage. Often they will “chirp” when the batteries are dying – that means to change the batteries, don’t disconnect or disable the devices!

While changing the batteries in your smoke detectors, make sure to test the audible alarm by pushing the button; check that the vents are clean and not clogged with dust; and check the manufacture date. Typically, detectors should be replaced every 10 years.

At least one smoke alarm should be placed on every level of the home. The most important location is near the bedrooms to provide an early warning to all sleeping occupants. A smoke alarm should also be placed inside every bedroom. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to properly install a smoke alarm.

Smoke detectors, plain and simply, save lives. Every year in the United States, about 3,000 people lose their lives in residential fires. Most fire victims die from inhalation of smoke and toxic gases, not as a result of burns. Most deaths and injuries occur in fires that happen at night while the victims are asleep. Properly installed and maintained smoke alarms in the home are considered one of the best and least expensive means of providing an early warning of a potentially deadly fire.

In addition to changing your smoke alarm batteries this weekend the City of Batavia Fire Department recommends following these simple steps to protect your life, your loved ones and your home:
    •    Dust or vacuum smoke alarms when you change the batteries.
    •    Test alarms once a month using the test button.
    •    Replace the entire alarm if it’s more than 10 years old or doesn’t work properly when tested.
    •    Make sure everyone in your home understands the warning of the smoke alarm and knows how to respond.

Finally, prepare and practice an escape plan so that you and your loved ones can get out of your home safely should there be a fire. Plan to meet in a place a safe distance from the fire and where first responders can easily see you.

The City of Batavia Fire Department has a free smoke alarm and battery installation program. For information about the free smoke alarm and battery installation program, City of Batavia residents should contact the City of Batavia Fire Department at (585) 345-6375.

March 7, 2014 - 12:39pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, sports, Batavia Youth Football, GLOW Fighting Ducks.

Press release:

Batavia Youth Football is pleased to announce that it has affiliated with the Greater Rochester Pop Warner Little Scholars, Inc. In doing so BYF has been granted the opportunity to field a youth football team, with participants from Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming counties.

This new team will reach out to all players from all four counties with no stipulations.

Teams associated with the GRPWLSI are the Chili Lions, Fairport Jr. Red Raiders, Greece Chargers, Hamlin Hornets, Irondequoit Scream’n Eagles, Monroe County Redskins, Ogden Bears, Webster Wildcats.

The season consists of seven games, all of which are played on Sundays. The games are refereed by certified NYS Section V referees according to NYS Section V rules. Each quarter is 10 minutes in length, including special teams.

The primary function of the GLOW Pop Warner youth football team and cheerleading squads will be to teach the fundamentals of the game of football and cheerleading as well as respect for education, and to develop strong, smart, responsible, healthy young men and women.

We want to develop our player’s appreciation for, and understanding of, leadership, teamwork and discipline.

Pop Warner football was founded in 1929 near Philadelphia. Since then, the participation has increased. Pop Warner football has had more than 250,000 participants, steadily increasing each year.

GLOW Pop Warner is looking to field three teams, Mitey Mite, Jr. Pee Wee, and Pee Wee with age ranges from 7 to 12 years old. It does not matter if the town where the child comes from has a NOFA or CYFL team, they will still be eligible to participate. 

GLOW Pop Warner youth football team and cheerleading squads are revamping their long accustomed uniforms to a more modern styling, similar to that of the Oregon Ducks.

Season long rate for both football players and cheerleaders is $50. Registration with be held at T.F. Brown’s in the side room of the main entrance on Saturday and Sunday, March 22 & 23, and March 29 & 30. Registration forms may be completed prior to registration dates and brought with the registrar. These registrations can be located on the Pop Warner Web site, at the top of the page under “Forms & Admin” – 2014 Player/Participant Contract.

REGISTRATION:

    Saturday    March 22, 2014    (9 a.m. – 12 p.m.)
    Sunday     March 23, 2014    (11 a.m. – 3 p.m.)
    Saturday    March 29, 2014    (9 a.m. – 12 p.m.)
    Sunday    March 30, 2014    (11 a.m. – 3 p.m.)

SAFETY FIRST:
Our athletes will compete with kids similar in age and weight. According to Pop Warner National Football, football is safer than soccer. Pop Warner has 12 percent fewer injuries per capita among 5-15 year olds than organized soccer in the same age range (**U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, NEISS).

NO PERSONAL STATISTICS:
The GLOW Fighting Ducks will only recognize the athletic accomplishments of the team, not the individual. Unlike other leagues where the main focus is on the competitiveness of winning and molding the next superstar, we will not track personal tallies of touchdowns, or yards rushing per game. We won’t count sacks or blocked kicks. We applaud the athletic efforts of the team to reinforce the importance of team work, with each member. Our goal is to show that each young person is an integral part of our team, and always will be.

If you have questions, contact Marc Lawrence, [email protected], or (585) 300-8213.

March 7, 2014 - 8:49am
posted by Howard B. Owens in animals, Attica, DEC, nature.

CORRECTION: It turns out there are two people from Attica named John Volpe who rescue turtles. There is John P. Volpe, who was arrested, and John K. Volpe, who is the person we met on Creek Road in 2012. We apologize to John K. Volpe and his family for the mistaken identity.

We met John Volpe two years ago after spotting a snapping turtle trying to cross Creek Road by Baskin Livestock.

Now Volpe is in quite a bit of trouble with the Department of Environmental Conservation for his collection of turtles and birds of prey.

When we met Volpe previously, he had stopped his car on Creek Road to carry the turtle out of the road. A short time later, Volpe's wife arrived and the couple took the turtle to their place in Attica.

Volpe explained to me that he and his father often rescue turtles. He said they would take the turtle home, ensure she (or he) is healthy. If healthy, and a female, they would hold her until she laid her eggs, then release her back into the wild, then raise the babies.

"Turtles mean a lot to us," said Volpe, who is Native American.

He is now facing state charges on alleged unlicensed possession of more than 100 live native turtles, including one live wood turtle, which is currently listed as a "species of special concern" in New York State.

Volpe is also accused of having numerous live birds that require a license to possess, including screech owls, great horned owls, a snowy owl, red-tailed hawks, turkey vultures, gulls, a blue heron and numerous other birds.

He was also allegedly found to possess taxidermy mounts of more than a dozen species of protected birds of prey including: screech owls, great-horned owls, snowy owls, barred owls, saw-whet owls, red-tailed hawks, Cooper's hawks, sharp-shinned hawks, kestrels and turkey vultures.

The  62-year-old also faces possible federal charges for taxidermy work on migratory waterfowl as well as possessing bald and golden eagle mounts and parts.

Volpe was allegedly found in possession in 2005 of two birds of prey. The birds were placed in a licensed facility, according to the DEC, and Volpe was given a chance to obtain a property license, but did not complete the process, the DEC said.

March 7, 2014 - 8:27am
posted by Paul Draper III in music, local, LIVE.

March 7, 2014 - 6:46am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Alabama.

A one-vehicle rollover accident is reported on Crosby Road, possibily near Lewiston Road.

Unknown injuries. The caller left the scene. The caller guessed it was closer to Lewiston.

Alabama fire and Mercy EMS dispatched.

UPDATE 6:45 a.m.: A chief on scene wants to ensure law enforcement is in route. One of the Alabama engines responding can stand down and the Mercy ambulance responding can stand down.

March 6, 2014 - 8:53pm
posted by Billie Owens in elba, fire.

An upstairs room is reportedly on fire at 6456 Oak Orchard Road, just north of Lockport Road. Elba Fire Department is responding.

UPDATE 8:56 p.m.: An engine from Barre is requested to provide mutual aid.

UPDATE 9:02 p.m.: The Town of Batavia is requested to provide equipment at the scene and a crew to stand by in Elba's hall. Also called for mutual aid are South Byron, Byron, Oakfield and Bergen.

UPDATE 9:13 p.m.: Elba command requests all equipment to continue in non-emergency mode.

UPDATE 9:35 p.m.: National Grid is called in; no ETA given.

UPDATE 10:06 p.m. (by Howard): Fire reported under control.

UPDATE 10:12 p.m. (by Howard): Information provided by Alecia Kaus, who is on scene: Chimney fire that got into the walls. Code enforcment on scene, trying to determine if the family can stay. No injuries. Seven fire companies responded, including two from Orleans County. Fire is out, doing overhaul and checking for extensions with thermal camera.

Phtoo by Alecia Kaus.

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Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

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