Online News. Community Views.

>> Download <<
The Batavian Mobile
Droid | iPhone

Recent comments

Community Sponsors


October 22, 2016 - 8:54am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Oakfield, news.

A caller reports a vehicle on its roof in the area of 6042 Fisher Road, Oakfield.

Unknown if any injuries.

Oakfield fire and Mercy EMS responding.

UPDATE 8:58 a.m.: Mercy Flight #7 is on a ground standby.

UPDATE 9:01 a.m.: Patient out of the vehicle.

UPDATE 9:05 a.m.: Cancel Mercy Flight.

UPDATE 9:21 a.m.: The road can reopen.

October 18, 2016 - 2:30pm

Press release:

State Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer has announced $55,000 in state funding to establish a new joint agriculture education program for Oakfield-Alabama Central and Elba Central School districts.

The mission of the new program is to encourage more high school students to explore agriculture and consider a career in the industry.

“This important program will serve as another tool for educators to cultivate student development and success, and I am proud to have been able to jump start this new program," Ranzenhofer said. "Now, our students will have better opportunities to learn more about agriculture and be inspired to start a career in the industry."

The start-up funding will cover equipment, field trip expenses, instructional resources and materials, and instructional salaries. Enrolled students, in grades nine through 12, will experience classroom instruction, hands-on projects and opportunities to visit local businesses with a connection to the agriculture industry. The program will be administered by and located at the Oakfield-Alabama School District.

“We appreciate the support of Senator Ranzenhofer in this new program. Our students are surrounded by agriculture and now have the opportunity to learn about the careers of the industry. We hope the program will motivate some of our graduates to remain in the area as well,” said Oakfield-Alabama Superintendent Mark A. Alexander.

Agriculture and its related industries are the number one economic driver for Genesee County and New York State, and industry demand for a properly trained workforce is greater than ever. According to the Land O' Lakes Foundation, food production in the next 50 years will need to be higher than the prior 500 years.

Senator Ranzenhofer’s office received letters of support from the local agriculture industry, including: Cornell University Cooperative Extension Genesee County; Lamb Farms Inc.; CY Farms LLC; East Pembroke Grange; Wayne E. Phelps Ent. Inc.; Offhaus Farms Inc.; and Z&M Ag and Turf.

The Oakfield-Alabama Board of Education will publicly recognize Senator Ranzenhofer for his efforts to establish the new program during tonight’s board meeting.

October 15, 2016 - 6:11pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in history, Oakfield, news.


Bill Chase, a tour guide today, stands on "the big rock" near the site of what was once one of the largest Native American settlements in the region, on property now owned by Lamb Farms in the Town of Oakfield. The rock may have served as a grinding stone for the Indians, but there is little evidence to support that supposition. At one time, Town of Oakfield considered moving the stone into Triangle Park.

The visit to the big rock was part of four tours today of 30 people each to the site known to later generations of Seneca as Tegat Ainea Aghgue, or town with two forts.  It's the first time the Oakfield Historical Society organized a tour of the site and it proved to be hugely popular. All four tours were sold out and another 30 or 40 people wanted to go on the tour.

The location of the other fort has never been confirmed, but the Oakfield fort was occupied for about 100 years during the 12th and 13th centuries.

The fort was located on the banks of a creek in an area that may have been cleared of trees by fire. Evidence suggests that the Indians waited for new saplings to grow big enough and tall enough to serve as a fence for the fort. They also dug a ditch around the five acres of the fort.

Reverend Samuel Kirkland first visited the site in 1788 and found large trees growing in the area, but the mound and ditch were clearly visible. 

Sixty years later, E.G. Squire mapped the fort, even though part had been cleared by that time for farmland. 

The woods were filled with trees of enormous size and age, he reported. 

Kirkland may have found the second fort, but it has never been located since.

In 1958, a team from University at Buffalo, led by professor Marion White, assisted by amateur archeologist Stanley Vanderlaan, dug a portion of the site and discovered the remains of three longhouses. 

Many residents have known about the area their whole lives and one person on the tour said for a long time it was still possible to find arrowheads in the farm field right after the spring plowing.

The land is privately owned, but that doesn't stop motorcyclists and ATV riders from using the trails in the area. 

The guide reminded everybody they should not visit the site without permission. There may come a day in the future when archeologists want to return, perhaps with better and more sophisticated equipment to help uncover more about the lives of these early settlers. 


The embankment to the right is part of the ditch that surrounded the fort.



This white oak -- the white oak is what gives Oakfield its name -- is possibly the largest and oldest still standing in Oakfield. It's more than 300 years old. Each member of the tour was offered an acorn from a white oak to take home and try and grow. 







October 15, 2016 - 5:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Oakfield, news, accident.

An ATV accident with unknown injuries is reported in the area of 7756 Macomber Road, East Pembroke.

Oakfield fire and Mercy EMS responding.

A person is expected to meet responders by the road to take them to the scene of the accident.

UPDATE 5:35 p.m.: Mercy Flight out of Buffalo on a ground standby.

UPDATE 5:37 p.m.: Mercy Flight requested to the scene.

October 14, 2016 - 3:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in Oakfield, Alabama, news, charity, Oakfield-Alabama Lions Club.

Press release:

Members of the Oakfield-Alabama Lions Club will be at Denny’s Restaurant on Main Street in Batavia on Wednesday, Oct. 19, to raise funds as part of Denny’s Benefit Night. From 4 to 9 p.m., Denny’s will donate 20 percent of all pre-tax sales directly to the club. Funds will be used to support the Oakfield-Alabama Lions program for vision screening.

According to Bill Barbur, president of Oakfield-Alabama Lions Club, “Money raised on October 19 will allow Lions to meet pressing needs in our community including screening school children for visions problems and aid for furnishing eyeglasses and hearing aids to the needy.

"Lions members thank everyone who contributes to this important work. This year were able to purchase our own SPOT eye screener and to date have screened 265 students with 23 having been referred for further testing. You are truly helping Lions make a difference in our community.”

The Oakfield-Alabama Lions Club has 29 members and meets on the third Thursday of each month at 6:45 p.m. at the Oakfield Hotel on South Pearl Street in Oakfield.

Lions clubs are a group of men and women who identify needs within the community and work together to fulfill those needs. For more information or to get involved with the Oakfield-Alabama Lions Club, please contact Bill Barbur at 585-948-9882 or Bonnie Woodward at 585-739-2928.

Lions Clubs International is the world’s largest service club organization with more than 1.3 million members in approximately 45,000 clubs in more than 200 countries and geographical areas around the world. Since 1917, Lions clubs have aided the blind and visually impaired and made a strong commitment to community service and serving youth throughout the world. For more information about Lions Clubs International, visit the website at

October 12, 2016 - 9:34am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Oakfield, news.

Village of Oakfield Mayor Jason Armbrewster wanted to open the discussion about the future of village government at last night's village board meeting, but with two board members who didn't attend the meeting and one vacant seat on the board, he didn't have the necessary quorum to open the meeting.

Only one community member even showed up for the meeting.

Absent trustees were Dave Boyle and John Igor.

Armbrewster said that Igor contacted him in advance of the meeting and said he had a family matter that would prevent him from making the meeting, but Armbrewster said he didn't hear from Boyle at all.  

The mayor even went to Boyle's house shortly after the meeting's scheduled start time of 5 p.m. to see if he was home.

After he got back, he received a text from a third party who said Boyle was on vacation.

The lack of a quorum, which also delays the ability of the village to pay all of its bills, will spur Armbrewster to appoint somebody to fill the vacant board seat, which he had planned to leave open until the next election.

Armbrewster would liked to have rescheduled the meeting to Thursday night, but it wouldn't be possible to meet print newspaper deadlines for a public notice (a problem that wouldn't be an issue if the State Legislature would bring state law into the 21st century regarding public notices and allow online publication).

The trustees will try to meet again at 5 p.m., Monday.

Armbrewster was clearly frustrated because he thinks the trustees should start the discussion on possible dissolution of village government, not because he's dead set on pursuing that course, but because he thinks facts should be gathered and discussions held to see if dissolution is really in the best interest of village residents.

"There is talk in other communities about doing this and if I get asked that question, then I don't have an answer, because we don't have the data," Armbrewster said.

UPDATE: The meeting time for Monday's meeting has been changed to 7:30 p.m. Armbrewster said the time change is intended to encourage greater attendance and participation. "I encourage every resident to show up to give their input because I work for them," he said.

October 11, 2016 - 2:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Oakfield, news.

The trustees of the Village of Oakfield will discuss the future of village government at this evening's meeting at the Village Hall.

Among the options, dissolving the village.

Mayor Jason Armbrewster said any talk of dissolution is in the very earliest stages, but it thought it important to get the discussion going.

"Dissolution could have benefits for the residents of the village," Brewster said. "Or it might not, but we have to get the whole process going to find out."

It will be up to the village board this evening -- the meeting is at 5 p.m. -- to decide whether to table the idea or decide to look into hiring a consultant and find out how much that would cost.

Armbrewster approached the town board about the idea, which meant the first hint that anybody was thinking about dissolution appeared in the town board minutes.

That cause a bit of a stir in the village and Armbrewster thinks there's been a bit of an overreaction to the idea since there is no actual proposal for dissolution at this point, just talk, just the start of the idea of starting the process.

"It's not like, boom, we're going to dissolve," Armbrewster said.

October 10, 2016 - 1:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in Milestones, Oakfield, byron, elba.

On Oct. 1-2, Barry Flansburg, Albion Future Farmers of America Alumni president, joined others throughout the region to help determine how they could better support agricultural education and their local FFA chapters. Flansburg is an assessor for the communities of Oakfield/Byron/Elba.

The National FFA Alumni Organization recently hosted a regional development conference in Rochester, which delivered professional, personal and alumni program development to local and state members. In addition, the conference was a time for alumni members to network and share local visions of innovation with other alumni chapters and state associations.

"As alumni, it is our responsibility to serve as a source of relief for our agriculture educators as well as attract new volunteers and supporters to help our FFA programs," said National FFA Alumni Executive Director Josh Rusk. "Our hope is that the regional development conferences will give alumni the tools and support they need to be successful in that endeavor."

This conference was one of six to be held this year. The other locations for the conferences include Oklahoma City, Okla., Burbank, Wash., Ankeny, Iowa, Oxford, Ohio, and Atlanta.

The National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to 629,367 student members who belong to one of 7,757 local FFA chapters throughout the United States, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

October 6, 2016 - 2:16pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, batavia, Le Roy, alexander, Oakfield.

Jill Louise Hanlin, 39, of Alexander Road, Alexander, is charged with endangering the welfare of a child. On Oct. 4 at 2:30 p.m., while investigating an overdose, it was determined that the subject allegedly overdosed on heroin, had passed out, and had to be transported to UMMC. The subject was found by her son after he came home from school. The subject was the only adult home and was responsible for the care of her child. The subject was arrested, issued an appearance ticket for Alexander Town Court at 5 p.m. on Oct. 25. Medical staff on scene notified Child Protective Services. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Kevin Forsyth, assisted by Sgt. Jason Saile.

Linda A. Kupka, 49, of 940 Hardy Road, Cadiz, Ky., is charged with: first-degree falsification of business records; second-degree endangering the welfare of a physically disabled person; willful violation of health laws; and physical abuse/neglect/mistreatment. The incident(s) allegedly occurred at 3 p.m. on Jan. 12 at the GC Nursing Home, 278 Bank St. in the City of Batavia. NYS Attorney General's Office requested assistance from City of Batavia Police Department in arresting Kupka, a previously employed healthcare worker at the Nursing Home. She was arraigned at 2 p.m. on Sept. 27 before City Court Judge Balbick and put in GC Jail in lieu of $1,000 cash bail. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Frank Klimjack.

Robert M. Schryver, 53, of North Spruce Street, Batavia, is charged with forcible touching. He allegedly touched the intimate parts of another person without that person's consent at 5:45 p.m. on Sept. 28. He was arraigned and jailed in lieu of $1,000 cash bail. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Frank Kilmjack.

Darleen Ann McComb, 58, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. At 7:05 p.m. on Oct. 3, Batavia Police were called the Emergency Room at UMMC after McComb, who was a patient, allegedly kicked a hospital employee. She was arrested and issued an appearance ticket for City Court on Oct. 11. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins.

Salvatore M. Schwable, 19, of South Pearl Street, Oakfield, is charged with: resisting arrest, second-degree obstruction of governmental administration; trespass; and unlawful possession of marijuana. The subject was arrest at 3:01 a.m. on Sept. 29 on Bank Street following an investigation into a trespass complaint on State Street a short time earlier. He was jailed on $2,500 cash bail and was due in City Court Sept. 29. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Eric Foels, assisted by Officer Peter Flanagan.

Darrin Mitchell Brown Sr., 27, of Platten Road, Albion, is charged with failure to obey a child support order, which was issued Aug. 2. The subject was turned over to the Genesee County Sheriff's Office on an arrest warrant out of Batavia Town Court after allegedly being involved in a larceny at Walmart in Orleans County. He was arraigned in Town of Batavia Court at 3:30 p.m. on Oct. 3 and put in jail in lieu of $1,000 cash or $2,000 bond. He was due in court on Oct. 4. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Chris Parker.

Dawshawn A. Suber, 23, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with third-degree identity theft, third-degree forgery, and petit larceny. It is alleged that Suber stole a paycheck from a coworker at 5 p.m. on Sept. 16 and cashed the check at a local business. Suber was issued an appearance ticket and is due in City Court on Oct. 25. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Linsday, assisted by Officer Arick Perkins.

Annette Joy Waleski, 50, of South Pearl Street, Oakfield, is charged with DWI, aggravated DWI with a BAC of .18 percent or higher, and unsafe tires. Waleski was arrested at 5:31 p.m. on Oct. 2 on Main Street in Oakfield after a motor-vehicle accident in the Village. She was released on appearance tickets for Oakfield Town Court on Nov. 14. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Deputy Michael Lute.

Melynda M. Gayhart, 28, of North Avenue, Le Roy, is charged with: DWI -- common law; aggravated DWI with a BAC of .18 percent or greater; and failure to yield right-of-way on left turn. Batavia Police responded to Oak Street at 1 a.m. on Oct. 1 after receiving a complaint about erractic operation. Gayhard was arrested following a traffic stop, then released on appearance tickets for City Court on Oct. 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Mitchell Cowen, assisted by Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

Katelyn L. Walsh, 21, of Redfield Parkway, Batavia, is charged with DWI -- common law, DWI with a BAC of .08 percent or more, and having no tail lamps. At about 2:26 a.m. on Sept. 25, Batavia Police conducted a traffic stop on a Jeep with no tail lamps on Main Street in the City of Batavia. Upon further investigation, Walsh was arrested for allegedly operating the vehicle while in an intoxicated condition. She is due in City Court on Oct. 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Eric Bolles.

Joel Sebastian Puma, 41, of Walnut Street, Batavia, is charged with third-degree criminal mischief. At 10:35 p.m. on Sept. 27, Batavia Police responded to a residence on Walnut Street for the report of a male/female physical altercation. Following an investigation, it was revealed that during an argument, Joel Puma allegedly damaged the female's phone, which was valued greater than $250. He was arrested, arraigned and released on his own recognizance. He was due back in City Court on Sept. 28. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Chad Richards.

Mark E. Green, 34, of 75 Center Street, Warsaw, is charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief. He had an active arrest warrant out of Batavia City Court and was located at the old GC Courthouse and taken into custody. It is alleged that on June 25 Green removed a vehicle from a driveway on East Main Street in the City and in doing so caused damage to the driveway. He was arraigned and released on his own recognnizance and is to appear in City Court at a later date. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Frank Klimjack, assisted by Sgt. Matthew Lutey.

Jacqueline Michelle Bigelow, 51, of Prune Street, Batavia, is charge with dog running at large. At 11:18 a.m. on Oct. 4, Batavia Police responded to the area of South Spruce Street for the report of a large tan and black dog running loose. Police and Animal Control attempted to capture the dog for more than 30 minutes and found that the dog was owned by Bigelow. She was issued an appearance ticket for Oct. 11 in City Court. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by OfficerJames Sheflin.

Robert M. Freeman, 24, of State Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. He allegedly stole a bottle of alcohol from a business on West Main Street in Batavia on Sept. 28. He was arrested at 3:24 p.m. on 8351 Lewiston Road. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Chad Richards.

Shane Zimblis, 45, of East Main Street, Le Roy, is charged with criminal mischief. Zimblis turned himself in at Batavia Police Headquarters on an arrest warrant out of Batavia City Court for a criminal mischief charge, which stemmed from an unspecified incident on West Main Street, Batavia, on Oct. 3. He was issued appearance ticket and was due in City Court Oct. 4. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Davis.

Nathan Samuel Love, 23, of Montclair Avenue, is charged with failure to appear. He was arrested on an active bench warrant out of Batavia City Court for allegedly failing to appear for a court date. He was issued an appearance ticket and turned over to another jurisdiction on a warrant for a separate matter. He was due in City Court Oct. 5. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Chad Richards.

October 3, 2016 - 3:30pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, education, elba, byron, bergen, Oakfield, Alabama, Announcements.

Press release:

For students, the junior and senior years of high school are filled with many critical decisions about the future. The College and Career Counseling Center at Byron-Bergen Jr./Sr. High School is working hard to make preparing for life-beyond-school easier for students and their families.

This is the second year for the school’s dedicated Center, led by counselor Rob Kaercher. The Center is busy in the fall with a full schedule of visits and special presentations from a wide range of regional and national two- and four-year colleges, trade schools, and military branches.

(A Financial Aid Night is scheduled at 6:30 on Oct. 20 to help families from Byron-Bergen, Elba, and Oakfield-Alabama with the Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application.It will be held in the Byron-Bergen High School auditorium.)

Jr./Sr. High School Principal Patrick McGee said, "Our goal is to provide a wide variety of opportunities for our students in the areas of college and/or career. I feel we are ahead of the curve in this area as our students now have a daily chance to identify a pathway and gain a much better sense of what their post-secondary plans will be."

Students at the school not only have access to extensive in-person and online resources in the Center; they also get invaluable hands-on, one-to-one guidance from college-and-career expert Kaercher.

“This is a small school, and I can really get to know our kids as individuals,” Kaercher said. “I start as early as possible with them, so they have more options. I can help them find educational and career directions that match up with their interests and values.

"I enjoy working with them and their parents on financial aid, exploring scholarships, and completing their college applications. The commitment our district has to this initiative is extraordinary—kids at B-B can have a similar support experience to what they might find at a private school or with a paid independent college counselor.”

The College and Career Center has greatly expanded its services this year:

  • Instant Admissions Week is being offered Nov. 7-10. Participating colleges include Erie Community College, Finger Lakes Community College, Genesee Community College, Monroe Community College, Niagara Community College, The College at Brockport, and SUNY Alfred State. “It is an exciting opportunity for kids to present themselves, have a short interview, and potentially get an on-the-spot decision from that college,” Kaercher said.
  • Students will be ready for that interview thanks to another innovation the Center offers: virtual interviews with online avatars. The district’s teachers use an interactive professional development tool called Mursion, which employs practice with avatars to improve teaching technique. The Center has adjusted and expanded the program for students to use to develop better interviewing skills.
  • The Naviance Family Connection, which was introduced to seniors last year, is now available to juniors, too. The online program helps students inventory their interests, research careers, search for colleges, create resumes, and submit applications. "Our current focus has been working with upperclassmen,” Kaercher said. “But as the Center continues to become established, more opportunities, including Naviance, will be available to junior high school students."
  • The Center has also increased its college and industry visits this year. “We have found these to be very important,” Kaercher said. “Students have the chance to make connections directly with the actual decision makers, the admissions counselors and company human resources directors.”

“This can be a difficult and confusing time if you are trying to navigate it all by yourself,” Kaercher said. “We want to help make the process much easier. We are reaching out to parents and families—we hope they will contact the Jr./Sr. High School office to get more information.”

October 3, 2016 - 1:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in Oakfield, Alabama, OACS Alumni Hall of Fame, news.

The Oakfield Alabama Central School Alumni Hall of Fame Committee will honor the Alumni Hall of Fame Class of 2016 at an induction dinner and ceremony Oct. 22 at the high school. It is located at 7001 Lewiston Road in Oakfield.

Tickets are on sale now and only available through Oct. 9. Cost is $15. You can buy them at the high school main office, Warner's flower shop on Main Street in Oakfield or by contacting committee member Jamie Disalvo at [email protected] or by sending payment to Disalvo at: 7604 S. Pearl Street Road, Oakfield, NY 14125.

Doors for the event open at 5:30 p.m. and it begins at 6 o'clock.

The Hall of Fame recognizes outstanding OACS alumni who have achieved distinction in their lives after high school through significant contributions to their career, community or through personal achievements.

September 30, 2016 - 11:22am
posted by Genesee Chamber... in Swallow Hollow, Oakfield, news, outdoors.

The Swallow Hollow Nature Trail, located on Knowlesville Road inside Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge is a fun little adventure for nature lovers. The 1.3-mile trail is a virtual biology field trip, offering an incredible variety of wildlife and natural environments. This is not only an enjoyable trail for some exercise, but has many opportunities to learn about animals and trees that inhabit the refuge.

trail 1The trail's education mission recently took another step with the addition of an audio tour which enhances the visitor’s experience. There are several audio tour signs along the way that help you get facts or answers about certain aspects of the trail. Each audio session is about a minute long and provides interesting information about where you are standing. A combination of the audio and visual is a strong learning tool. On a recent visit, this blogger learned that you walk through three different habitats along the trail: forested wetlands, upland hardwood forest and the emerging marsh. In addition to the audio tour, the trail features many educational signs that shed insight on the nature that surrounds you.Trail 6

Another great bonus is that the Swallow Hollow Nature Trail is wheelchair accessible, with one half of the trail located on a boardwalk, and another half of the trail smooth cinder walkway.

If you still have a thirst for knowledge after your nature walk, go over to the nearby Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge Interpretative Center for some fun learning opportunities.

Trail 4

Trail 2

Trail 5

Trail 7

Visit to learn more...

September 28, 2016 - 3:40pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, Grand Jury, Oakfield.

Marlek E. Holmes, a convicted sex offender, is indicted for the crime of failure to register a change of address, a Class D felony. Holmes is accused of moving to 9 Gibson St. in the Town of Oakfield in March and failing to register his change of address with the NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services within 10 days as required by law. In Special Information filed in the indictment by District Attorney Lawrence Friedman, Holmes is accused of previously having been convicted of: (1) failing to report a change of address, a Class E felony, and (2) as a Level 3/Sexual Predator, failing to verify his address every 90 days, also a Class E felony, as required by law. The convictions were handed down on Dec. 5, 2011, in Genesee County Court.

September 28, 2016 - 1:03pm
posted by Billie Owens in Oakfield, Alabama, elba, volleyball, news, sports, charity, breast cancer.

Mark your calendars for the Dig Pink Game on Oct. 6 when Oakfield-Alabama and Elba high school volleyball players compete again Wheatland-Chili to benefit The Side-Out Foundation.

The JV matchup starts at 5 p.m. and the varsity game begins at 6:30. They will take place inside the Oakfield-Alabama Elementary School Gymnasium, located at 7001 Lewiston Road in Oakfield.

There will be 50/50 raffles, refreshments, raffles items and a serving contest.

This is the sixth year of the Dig Pink Game and to date more than $7,000 has been raised locally for the nonprofit foundation, whose mission is to enhance breast cancer research and awareness.

September 26, 2016 - 11:35am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, elba, Oakfield, batavia, byron, Alabama, Alexander..

Somebody is stealing batteries from large trucks, buses, and heavy equipment and the Genesee County Sheriff's Office is looking for the public's help in identifying the culprit.

These are known as Type 31 batteries. They retail for as much as $300 and have resale and recycling value.

Investigators say the series of thefts seem confined to Genesee County, particularly in Elba, Oakfield, Batavia, Byron, Alabama and Alexander.

The Sheriff's Office has received more than a dozen complaints of such thefts, which occur overnight.

Anyone with information that may pertain to the case can call (585) 343-5000.

September 21, 2016 - 4:48pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, Oakfield, elba, Genesee ARC 5K.

(Submitted photos.)

We'll cut to the chase and tell you: Sam Tambe popped the question to Christina Strang after the ARC 5K race in Elba on Saturday and she accepted his proposal of marriage.

"I was hot and sweaty and she was hot and sweaty, and I couldn't tell if I took her breath away or she was just out of breath," Tambe said this afternoon, with the comedic delivery of a vaudevillian.

At any rate, he thought the venue was apropos.

"We met a year and a half ago at a running club in Oakfield and it grew from there," Tambe said. "I thought it would be appropriate to propose after a race."

He also liked the element of surprise afforded by the 12th annual Genesee ARC Friends & Family race, which raises money for its Mary Anne Graney Memorial Scholarship. 

So after crossing the finish line, on bended knee with ring at the ready, he gallantly asked for Christina's hand and she gasped and covered her mouth in shock, letting the moment sink in a second, before answering in the affirmative.

Onlookers seemed delighted by the turn of events. Many clapped and voiced hearty approvals.

The couple plans to have a long engagement. They currently are without firm plans about the kind of wedding they want to have and when they want to have it.

Meanwhile, the 46-year-old fiance and his 41-year-old fiancee run together practically every day and both live in Oakfield, where she owns a home and he rents an apartment. (Strang was three children ages 14, 17 and 20 from a previous marriage. Tambe was also previously married.)

Matrimony will come in its own time.

"I wanted her to know I am serious about my intentions," Tambe said.

September 15, 2016 - 11:43am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Oakfield, news.


The County Legislature took its show on the road on Wednesay, holding its regular full body meeting at the Oakfield Community and Government Center.

It was a chance for the Town of Oakfield to show off its expanded and remodeled Town Hall.

Barry Flansburg, town accessor, said town officials wanted the new facility to be more than just a town hall, instead one could host multiple agencies and services as well as community groups and serve as an emergency command center if needed.

That's why it's called, now, officially, the Community and Government Center.

"This is the ultimate shared facility," Flansburg said.

As an example for the planned flexibility, Flansburg noted, the panel seating area has 10 chairs, not just the five necessary for the town board. This gives the Legislature room to meet there, and it also allows all town officials a seat at the table, so to speak, for town meetings, which Flansburg said helps foster better communication and collaboration.

The new courts facility not only hosts the Town of Oakfield Town Court but the Town of Elba's, as well. The facility is certificated to a standard that it could host the County Court if ever required to do so.

The board just approved on Tuesday night a request by the court of the Town of Alabama to hold a jury trial in the courtroom next month, since Alabama's court isn't really well suited to jury trials.

There is also a small kitchen (and break room for staff) that will be available to community and civic groups that want to use the community/meeting room for events or meetings.

The highway department also has expanded space and motion-controlled LED lights have been installed in the bays.

Flansburg said that when visitors come into the town offices, they notice that all of the officials have offices and desk space no bigger than what they had before and are surprised.

"This wasn't about giving us bigger offices," Flansburg said. "This is a community space and we wanted it to be for the whole community."

The offices did receive new carpet, wallpaper, paint and fixtures. There's also improved security in the foyer.

The project cost $3.1 million. The town planned it for eight years, saved money to help fund it, and are able to pay the bonds through existing cash flow and the rent the Town of Elba pays for the courtroom. There is no new tax burden on Town residents to pay for the facility, Flansburg said.




September 13, 2016 - 3:35pm

The third annual Ride to Remember and Basket Raffle, presented by the Western New York Perinatal Bereavement Network Inc., will take place Saturday, Sept. 17, starting at the Oakfield Alabama Baptist Church.

The church is located at 2210 Judge Road in Oakfield.

Ticket sales for the Basket Raffle will take place from 9 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. and the raffle starts at 12:30.

All proceeds will benefit the network and the "Remembering Love in a Heartbeat" Project.

Here is the story of Jennifer and Bruce Pritchett -- bereaved parents of Helen Lois (Jan. 4-13, 2012):

Five years ago, we were expecting our second child when we found out that our daughter, Helen, had a terminal condition. Through a series of counselors, we were given the Western New York Perinatal Bereavement Network’s (WNYPBN) contact information. This organization provided our family with much support. One of the most treasured items we have of our daughter is a recorded heartbeat from our sonogram appointment. The WNYPBN provided us with the recordable sound box that we took to our appointment & we were able to record her heartbeat. We then made a stuffed animal with the heartbeat device inside. 

The purpose of this ride is to support the programs of the WNYPBN, especially the new program, “Remembering Love in a Heartbeat.” This program will provide families facing a similar situation the opportunity to have their baby’s heartbeat recorded and placed in a bear or bunny so they will always be able to hear their precious baby’s heart beat...another beautiful memory.

The Western New York Perinatal Bereavement Network Inc. (WNYPBN) is an organization comprised of bereaved parents and healthcare professionals who promote standards of bereavement intervention through educational support, community programs and referral services for bereaved parents. The Network serves all eight counties of WNY and is run completely on donations and volunteers. The Mission is to assist the community in meeting the needs of people facing perinatal death:  the death of a baby due to miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, stillbirth, or early infant death.

For more information visit:

September 13, 2016 - 3:00pm

WOW! This Custom Built Rural Ranch situated on over 20 acres has it all. Conveniently located w/ less than an hour commute to both Buffalo and Rochester Metro. Open, flowing floor plan leads to florida room & large deck overlooking private rear park-like lot. Perfect combination of cleared & wooded land complete with trails, offers premier hunting in the region. Full walkout basement w/ 10 foot ceilings could be converted to additional living space. Master Suite offers stand-up shower, jacuzzi tub, his and hers closets w/ expansive walk-in. Full attic, central air, house generator and more! Click here to view the full listing. Call Bob Kwandrans  at Zambito Realtors today 585-590-0767 to view this property.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Subscribe to



Copyright © 2008-2016 The Batavian. Some Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license.
Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

blue button