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August 25, 2016 - 10:11pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, Darien.

The driver of a car that hit a porch at Sumner and Alleghany roads in Darien is reportedly unconscious.

Darien fire and Darien ambulance dispatched.

UPDATE 11:02 p.m.: Appears to be non-serious injuries.

August 25, 2016 - 5:31pm

Maybe you've been wanting to pick up an American Buffalo hoodie or a women's spaghetti-strap shirt with the Made in America logo on it, but you haven't had a chance to drive to one of the MIA outlets in Erie County.

Well, you're in luck (no pun intended) as plans have been finalized to locate a Made in America store in the lobby of Batavia Downs Gaming on Park Road.

"About three weeks ago, (Western Regional Off-Track Betting President) Henry (Wojtaszek), (Vice President of Operations) Scott (Kiedrowski) and I met with Mark Andol, owner of the Made in America franchise headquartered in Elma, and we signed an agreement to open a gift shop at Batavia Downs Gaming," said Michael Nolan, WROTB's chief operating officer.

"We feel that it's a good idea, especially being a public benefit corporation, that fits right in the bloodstream of our demographics."

Nolan said Batavia Downs will offer clothing apparel -- T-shirts, hoodies, etc. -- and other items, with some of the clothing to bear both the MIA and Batavia Downs Gaming insignias.

The announcement was made this morning at the WROTB Board of Directors meeting at Batavia Downs Gaming.

For more about the Made in America store, go to

In other developments, Nolan said:

-- He expects the Downs' partnership with FanDuel to offer fantasy sports competition at Batavia Downs Gaming at some of its OTB branches to "receive clearance" from the New York State Gaming Commission by next week -- "in time to be off and running for the 2016 NFL season." 

The gaming board approved FanDual's application to operate in New York State last week, action that came on the heels of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's decision to legalize interactive fantasy sports in New York. Previously, WROTB signed a four-year contract with FanDual.

-- That an EZ Bet kiosk is being placed at Letchworth Pines in Portageville. This will be the third such kiosk in Wyoming County, with the other two located at BenGo’s Express Mart in Attica and the Arcade Hotel.

Letchworth Pines was purchased last year by Kevin Sass, who has been involved in the bowling business since the late 1990s and also was a competitor on the Professional Bowlers Association Regional Tour. 

A grand opening, featuring prize drawings and refreshments, is scheduled from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday at The Pines. It is located at 6985 Fillmore Road.

August 25, 2016 - 3:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news.


Photo and story via our news partner, WBTA.

R. Stephen Hawley, who was 94 years old, died early this morning in Arizona.

Before his retirement, he had been elected to 10 terms in the New York State Assembly, serving 20 years beginning in 1973.

Hawley, a World War II Veteran, was a 1939 graduate of Batavia High School and at the beginning of his political career owned a family farm in Batavia.

Since 2006, Hawley’s son Steven M. Hawley has taken up his mantle of local representation in the State Assembly.

August 25, 2016 - 2:27pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, batavia, pembroke.

Jacob M. Twardowski, 22, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment, endangering the welfare of a child and third-degree menacing. He was arrested at midnight on Aug. 24 following a domestic incident at his residence. He was transported to City Court, arraigned and released. He is due in City Court on Sept. 28. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Kevin DeFelice, assisted by Officer Peter Flanagan.

Cassandra L. Brunea, 43, of State Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. She was arrested at 12:56 p.m. on State Street following a disturbance. It is alleged that during the incident Brunea subjected another person to unwanted physical contact by spitting on the person. She was issued an appearance ticket and released. She is due in City Court on Sept. 6. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Frank Klimjack, assisted by Officer Jason Davis.

Michael S. Klotzbach, 29, of Boyce Road, Pembroke, is charged with second-degree harassment. He was arrested at 11:30 p.m. on Aug. 23 after a physical altercation with an acquaintance. He was issued a computer-generated appearance ticket for City Court on Aug. 29. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan.

August 25, 2016 - 2:10pm

Press release:

The Richter Family Foundation runs a program that gives books to children under age 5 through The Dolly Parton Imagination Library. It has been in operation since 2004 and the Oakfield-Alabama, Elba, Pavilion, and Pembroke school districts participate in the program. Recently, Byron-Bergen was added to the program.

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a set of books beginning with the children’s classic "The Little Engine That Could." Each month a new, carefully selected age-appropriate book will be mailed in your child’s name directly to your home. Best of all it is a FREE GIFT! There is no cost or obligation to your family.

To be eligible in the Byron-Bergen School District, the child must live in the Byron-Bergen School District and must be between the ages of birth and his/her 5th birthday.

A committee representing the Byron-Bergen School District, the Byron and Bergen Communities, and the Byron-Bergen Library is partnering with the Richter Family Foundation to bring the Imagination Library to the children.

If your zip code is 14020, 14021, 14058, 14143 or 14482, the only way to register is to fill out a registration form and mail it to the address indicated on the form. The forms can be found at the Byron Town Hall, the Bergen Town and Village Offices, the Byron-Bergen Library, and the Byron-Bergen Elementary Office.  

If your zip code is 14416, 14422, 14428, 14429 or 14470, you may fill out and send in a registration form or, you may register online at by clicking on the box “register my child” and following the directions.

The Byron-Bergen Imagination Library Committee consists of: Nancy Bailey, librarian, Bergen Public Library; Anna Marie Barclay, Village of Bergen mayor and retired teacher; Donna Gerrard, Byron resident and a mom and grandmother; and Brian Meister, Byron-Bergen Elementary School principal.

They know that you, the parents and your children, will love the Imagination Library and encourage you to sign up your children today. A family can register several children within the household as long as they are under age 5.

August 25, 2016 - 2:02pm

Submitted photo. David Little, left, president of the Rural Schools Association of New York State, presents the Appreciation Award to Sen. Michael Ranzenhofer during the 2016 RSA Conference in Cooperstown.

Press release:

The Rural Schools Association of New York State (RSA) has recognized Sen. Michael H. Ranzenhofer with an Appreciation Award for his advocacy and leadership on behalf of rural schools in Western New York and across New York State.
“The Rural Schools Association of New York State is proud to honor the efforts of Senator Ranzenhofer with our annual Appreciation Award," said RSA Executive Director David A. Little. "Senator Ranzenhofer’s tireless efforts to eliminate the harmful Gap Elimination Adjustment from school funding was of tremendous benefit to all schools. His recognition of the impact of unfunded mandates on school districts and his collaborative approach to working with those he represents serve as examples of the leadership needed to support our rural school districts."
Ranzenhofer was the first to organize a forum at Genesee Community College for rural school districts to express the negative impact of the Gap Elimination Adjustment (GEA) budget cuts with then Senate Education Committee Chairman John Flanagan in November 2011. Earlier this year, Ranzenhofer successfully worked to eliminate the GEA once and for all.
“Fighting for our rural schools has been one of my legislative priorities, and it is such an honor to be recognized for my efforts,” Ranzenhofer said. “The GEA budget cuts were even more severe to the bottom lines of rural school districts. Ending the GEA is a major victory for students and parents, and I am proud to champion their cause.”
Genesee Valley Educational Partnership Board Member & RSA Zone Four Director Edward Engel nominated Ranzenhofer for the honor.
"Senator Ranzenhofer has been a steadfast supporter of our rural schools. He is a true legislative partner who listens and understands first, then collaborates to find solutions. For example, he helped to jump start a new Agri-Business program for high school seniors. In a data-driven world, agriculture education programs continue to deliver more significant value than any report or test can demonstrate in the lives of our students," said Engel.
Since 2013, Ranzenhofer has secured $100,000 in state funding annually to support the Agri-Business Academy at the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership. The one-year program helps high school seniors – from across school districts in Genesee County – explore careers in the agri-business industry.
About the Rural Schools Association of New York State (RSA)
The Rural Schools Association is a statewide, member driven organization dedicated to representing the interests of small and rural school districts in New York State. Approximately 300 school districts and BOCES units are currently enrolled as members of RSA. In addition to the financial support provided by RSA members, supplemental assistance is given by New York State College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Cornell University, in the form of office facilities, utilities, clerical assistance, and the use of equipment.
August 25, 2016 - 1:49pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Middle School, batavia, news.

Fifth-grade Student & Parent Orientation

Batavia Middle School, located at 96 Ross St. in the City of Batavia, will have a brief orientation program at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 30, in the Batavia Middle School Auditorium for fifth-grade students and parents.

Students will have the opportunity to purchase their locks. This will give fifth-graders an opportunity to practice, at home, before school starts. Please bring $4.50 for your child's lock. Exact change is always appreciated. If you choose to write a check, please make it payable to: Batavia City School District.

We will review the schedule for Connect Day (on Sept. 7th) and parents and students will receive some helpful materials.

It is not necessary to bring any school supplies with you at this time. Do, however, complete and bring with you the Emergency Go Home Plan, which will be mailed home with your child's teacher/homeroom assignment.

Come and get acquainted ~ We look forward to working with you as your child transitions to Middle School. If you have any questions, please call Julia Rogers, House Administrator at (585) 343-2480, ext. 3001, or at (585) 201-3389.

Transfer Student Orientation

All students in grades 6-8 who are transferring to Batavia Middle School are invited to attend an orientation program at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 30, in the Middle School Auditorium. The program will include an overview of our Middle School and will be followed by a building tour. School counselors will be available for students and parents.

August 25, 2016 - 1:42pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, harness racing, Batavia Downs.

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

The $9,500 mares Open pace at Batavia Downs on Wednesday night (Aug. 24) was like “Groundhog Day” for the winner as My Tallia Ideal once again came from off the pace to dominate at the end and score consecutive victories in the Genesee County oval’s top distaff class.

Looney Dune (Ben McNeil) took a slow slow methodic outside route to the lead after the small but select field of mares broke from the gate for race one. She cleared before the quarter in :27.3 and from that point, the trailing field followed her in post-position order until they straightened out for the half.

At the head of the stretch, My Tallia Ideal (Dave McNeight III) pulled and began motoring up towards the leader followed by All Charged Up (John McDonald) and Who Says That (Drew Monti) in the outer flow. By the middle of the backstretch, My Tallia Ideal’s forward assault was complete when she cleared and tripped the three-quarter timer in 1:25. From there, the gauntlet was laid down as the daughter of Western Ideal opened up by two, then three and pulled away more to a 1:53.4 win over All Charged Up and Who Says That.

It was the sixth win of the year for My Tallia Ideal ($5.90), including three out of four Batavia Downs starts, all being in the top class at the Downs. The win pushed her earnings for the year to $43,525 for owners Peter Kibler, Kenneth Owczarczak and Courtney McNeight. My Tallia Ideal is trained by Dave McNeight Jr.

Four drivers owned most of the card as Todd Cummings won three races and Kevin Cummings, Jack Flanigen and Dave McNeight III each won two. Trainer Dave McNeight Jr. also sent two horses to the winner’s enclosure.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Aug. 26) with post time for the first race at 6:15.

August 25, 2016 - 11:59am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, football, sports, batavia bulldawgs, Batavia HS.


The Batavia Blue Devils hosted the Batavia Bulldawgs (Minis, ages 8-9) at Van Detta Stadium on Wednesday night for the annual scrimmage between the two teams.








August 25, 2016 - 11:20am


Jericka, lead singer for the local Christian band Salt of Earth, sings during the opening of Batavia's Great Tabernacle, a three-day event of music and worship at the Genesee County Fairgrounds.

The event continues tonight with free performances by Jim Drew and Jason Upton, and with speakers each night, tonight is Pastor Kevin Traux.









Last night's guest speaker was Tim Bennett, and Robin Mark performed.

August 25, 2016 - 10:46am
posted by Howard B. Owens in chris collins, NY-27, agriculture, business, batavia.


Rep. Chris Collins hosted members of his Agriculture Advisory Committee -- local farmers and people involved in the local ag industry -- at Genesee Community College yesterday for a briefing on issues at the federal level affecting agriculture.

Collins noted that while he's not on the Ag Committee in Congress, he is on a committee with key oversight of a number of issues that affect agriculture.

"I am on Energy and Commerce, a more powerful committee, with oversight over the EPA and FDA," Collins said. "It’s certainly a good place to be."

Collins also addressed the issue of immigration, an important issue to farmers who, in recent years, have struggled to fill their farm labor force.

The NY-27th's representative is one of the few members of Congress to endorse Donald Trump for president and until this past week, Trump was calling for the deportation of 11 million immigrants who may have entered the country illegally. In the past week, Trump modified his position and is no longer promising to deport migrant workers living in the United States peacefully. 

Collins said the shift reflects Trump growing into the job of presidential candidate and one who is open to discussion.

"We will secure the borders and make sure the workforce that many of you have do have legal work papers and can figure out visas and other things that might ensure you’re not short of help," Collins said. "I think that’s a positive."



Mark Zittel, from Erie County, who brought samples of some of the produce he grows.


Collins staff member Jeff Freeland.

August 25, 2016 - 9:56am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Clean Cut Barbershop, batavia, business.


Joey Williams and Marcell Taylor, friends from Albion, started talking about opening a business together six years ago, when Williams was still in high school.

A few weeks ago, it all finally came together when they opened Clean Cut Barbershop at 466 Ellicott St., Batavia.

"The most ironic part is he's actually the one who got me into barbering," Williams said. "I used to do it as a hobby and he told me, 'dude, I think you can get pretty serious about this. Let's go check out a school.'

"Once you start cutting a couple of people in the neighborhood, the kids started talking and the word gets around," Williams added. "I didn’t really take it serious at first and then I graduated high school and that’s when he was like, let’s get a move on things."

Williams started barbering school and Taylor, who had completed his training in cosmetology at Continental School of Beauty in Batavia, honed his craft working in the basement of his mother's house.

After a couple of years, Taylor was ready to open a shop, but Williams wasn't quite there yet, so Taylor went ahead and opened up on his own in Albion. The process was on-the-job training for starting and running a business, so after Williams apprenticed in Brockport for a couple of years, he told Williams it was time to get going on their plans. 

It was up to Williams to find the location.

"I told him as long as you can do some quality cuts and get some good barbers in here, I can take care of the paperwork and everything," said Taylor, who describes himself as as "an entrepreneur by day and by night," and he's also a partner in Taylor and Taylor Consulting, an accounting firm.

They picked Batavia because it's a big enough city that is centrally located and they think there is open space for a barbershop that offers modern haircuts.

They also want to grow a business that has an impact on the local community. Their shop is more than a barbershop. They have a pool table and are planning to bring in TVs with video games where they can host Madden tournaments and perhaps erect a basketball hoop in the parking lot.

"It’s all just a way to bring kids together and kind of get away from all the negativity that is out there," Williams said. "We want to offer different activities that help kids stay out of trouble. We both come from a background where it was a struggle to find programs for youth and we see a need out there."

Taylor said they hope they can be a positive influence that shows kids they can accomplish things in life.

"We want to help the youth out there know that there is a future out there beyond what maybe they know right now," Taylor said.

August 25, 2016 - 9:01am
posted by Howard B. Owens in jobs, unemployment, economy, business.

Genesee County's unemployment rate last month was at its lowest level for July since 2006, hitting 4.0, lower by sixth-tenths of a percent from July of last year.

In 2006, the rate was 4.0 and the last time it was lower was in 2001, at 3.7 percent. The highest rate over the past decade was 7.5 percent in 2012.

Nationally, the unemployment rate is 5.1 percent and for New York State it is 5.0.

In June for Genesee County, the unemployment rate was 3.7 percent. June's rate locally is usually the same or lower than July.

The county's labor participation total -- the number of people working or actively looking for work is 30,800. A year ago it was 31,400. The highest level this century was 34,800 in 2008.

The unemployment rate for the GLOW region is 4.5 percent, down from 5.2 percent a year ago.

In the Rochester area, the unemployment rate is 4.7 percent. It's 4.9 percent in the Buffalo area.

August 25, 2016 - 7:47am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Darien, news, darien lake, darien lake performing arts center.

The following people were arrested by the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office during the Blink 182 concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center on Wednesday:

Jonathan W. Keough, 30, of La Mesa Lane, San Angelo, Texas, is charged with trespass after allegedly refusing to leave the concert venue after being told numerous times to leave the venue. Keough was arraigned in Darien Court and jailed in lieu of $250 bail.

Brandon J. Robinson, 23, of Willow Ridge, Amherst, is charged with two counts of second-degree harassment, third-degree criminal trespass, and resisting arrest after allegedly jumping a fence inside the venue and then fighting with security guards. Robinson then allegedly resisted arrest. He was arraigned in Darien Court and jailed in lieu of $1,500 bail.

Nicholas J. Pascucci, 26, of Parmalee Road, Le Roy, is charged with second-degree harassment after allegedly biting a Live Nation security guard. Pascucci was arraigned in Darien Court and jailed in lieu of $250 bail.

Mark J. Cone, 22, of Anglewood Avenue, Buffalo, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana after allegedly being found in possession of a quantity of marijuana.

Jeremy J. Carr, 19, of Vinedale Avenue, Rochester, is charged with two counts of trespass after allegedly reentering the concert venue twice after being ejected and told not to return.

Brandon J. Sarget, 28, of Douglas Street, Batavia, is charged with trespass after allegedly reentering the concert venue after being ejected and told not to return.

Michael J. Rawle, 22, of Appian Drive, Rochester, is charged with second-degree harassment after allegedly striking another person.

Allison J. Minnick, 23, of Maple Ridge Road, Medina, is charged with third-degree criminal trespass after allegedly jumping over the exterior fence into the venue after having been ejected earlier.

Rawson J. Duckett, 25, of Marlborough Road, Rochester, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana after allegedly being found in possession of a quantity of marijuana.

Philip J. Williamson, 19, of Seville Drive, Rochester, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana after allegedly being found in possession of a quantity of marijuana.

August 25, 2016 - 7:34am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

Reminders of how the new Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. This is its own registration system, separate from the main registration for The Batavian.
  • Once registered you must be logged in.
  • You click on the orange button, if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.

Notes on updates and fixes:

  • By request, users can now click a link to sign out of their account.
  • Bug fix: If users were not signed in, when they clicked the orange "Buy Now" button, they would get an error. We now tell users they need to be registered and signed in with links to help with that process.
  • Bug fix: When people requested a new password, they were not receiving that e-mail. That, too, appears to be fixed now. This will generate a new password for you. We do not yet have a way for you to view your registration and update your own password (this will be available at some point).
  • If you still encounter technical issues, email [email protected] Please be as specific as possible about the error you encountered or difficulty you had.
August 24, 2016 - 7:08pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, Le Roy, accident.

One person is injured following an accident at the intersection of Oatka Trail and Circular Hill roads. Le Roy fire and ambulance are responding.

August 24, 2016 - 5:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, news.


Deputies were able to follow a trail of breadcrumbs, or in this case, truck parts, and, along with the help of witnesses, find and identify a suspect in a hit-and-run accident that occurred in the late morning in Le Roy on Monday.

James J. Riechel, 39, of Britt Road, Le Roy, was charged with leaving the scene of a property damage accident, following too closely, driving without a license and reckless driving.

According to reports, Riechel's 2002 Dodge pickup struck a Waste Management garbage truck that was in the midst of making its rounds. 

A witness said as the Waste Management driver called to report the accident, Riechel fled the scene.

The accident was reported at 11:40 a.m. in the area of 8550 North Road, Le Roy. 

There were no injuries reported.

The accident was investigated by Sheriff's Deputy Joseph Loftus.

Reader submitted photo.

August 24, 2016 - 3:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, Milestones.

WILKES-BARRE, PA (08/23/2016)-- Wilkes University welcomes Samantha Cecere, of Batavia, into the Class of 2020. Cecere is one of more than 700 students who make up the University's newest undergraduate class. Cecere's major is Pre-pharmacy GS.

About Wilkes University:

Wilkes University is an independent institution of higher education dedicated to academic and intellectual excellence through mentoring in the liberal arts, sciences, and professional programs. Founded in 1933, the university is on a mission to create one of the great small universities, offering all of the programs, activities, and opportunities of a large, research university in the intimate, caring, and mentoring environment of a small, liberal arts college, at a cost that is increasingly competitive with public universities.

Learn more at

August 24, 2016 - 3:08pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, news, batavia, Bulldawgs, blue devils.
Press release:
Tonight is the annual BLUE DEVIL EXPERIENCE night. The Mini Division Bulldawgs (8-9 year olds) will play against the Blue Devils varsity team under the lights.


Prior to the game, the kids will be allowed to go into the varsity locker room to hear Coach Brennan Briggs' pre-game speech and come out onto the field alongside the Devils.

Game time is at 7:15 p.m. at Van Detta Stadium in Batavia (Mini players are to arrive by 7 p.m.).

This will be the battle of champions ... as the defending 2015 NOFA Mini Division Champion Bulldawgs look to defend its 2-0 record vs. the TWO-time defending Section V Blue Devils.

Come out for an exciting game! GO BULLDAWGS!

August 24, 2016 - 3:02pm
posted by Billie Owens in sports, pembroke, Arsenal Baseball.
Press release:

Arsenal Baseball is Western NY’s newest boys travel baseball program committed to bringing quality coaching and baseball to Genesee County and the surrounding areas.

The coaching staff at Arsenal Baseball is excited to announce try-outs from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 27th at the Pembroke High School varsity baseball field for the 2016-2017 travel baseball season. 

Registration begins at 12:30 p.m.

For additional questions please contact Brett Willitt at [email protected]




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

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