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October 4, 2015 - 10:22am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, BID, business, downtown.


Nearly 700 tickets were sold to this year's wine walk in Downtown Batavia, with a couple of dozen businesses participating. Rain didn't dampen the good times.

Top photo is the service area for The Batavian in the entryway of the Masonic Temple building. Thanks to Dee Neilans, Lisa Ace and Lucie Ann Griffis for serving the food and wine, and special thanks to Dibble Family Center for catering our food service.












September 22, 2015 - 6:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, BID, genesee county chamber of commerce, GCEDC.

Press release:

The Batavia Business Improvement District (BID), Batavia Development Corporation, Genesee County Chamber of Commerce and the Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) will host investors and developers for a luncheon and tour prior to the sixth annual BID Batavia Wine Walk on Saturday, Oct. 3.

Prior to the wine walk, a lunch will be served followed by tours of various sites and commercial spaces in the City of Batavia, including Tompkins Bank of Castile’s new call center. The tour from 1 to 3 p.m. and the wine walk afterward are for any developer, business owner or investor interested in learning about economic development opportunities in the City and the various incentives that are available through the GCEDC.

“This is a great opportunity for developers to see first-hand some of our unique downtown properties and sites,” said Steve Hyde, GCEDC president and CEO. “This event is part of our ongoing efforts to inform and educate developers about the many business opportunities that exist in Genesee County, and specifically the City of Batavia.”

“The BID offers a unique and walkable downtown experience that is important to both the baby boomers and the millennium generation,” said Laurie Oltramari, the new executive director of the Batavia Business Improvement District (BID). “The needs of these large generations need to be addressed and have great potential for investment. Having a walkable downtown is essential to its success, and we have it. Now we need to show potential investors how eliminating gaps when walking down the street is critical to ‘creating a place.’ ”

“The Genesee County Chamber of Commerce supports and encourages business development throughout Genesee County,” said Tom Turnbull, president of the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce. “With its location between Buffalo and Rochester in the heart of Western New York, no other county can offer the strategic advantages that Genesee County can. As the county seat and the logistical center of the county, the City of Batavia is an ideal spot for developers to grow their business footprint in the Upstate New York market.”

The registration deadline for the luncheon, tour and walk is Sept. 30. Free hotel accommodations are available for out-of-town developers and guests. For more information and to register, please contact Laurie Oltramari at the BID at 585-344-0900 or [email protected].

September 5, 2015 - 12:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, wine walk, BID.

Press release:

The Batavia Business Improvement District (BID) will once again hosts its 6th annual Batavia Wine Walk from 4 to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 3rd.

Tickets are now available for purchase at Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle (8 Center St.; 343-0584), T-Shirts, Etc. (37 Center St.; 345-1997), Valle Jewelers (21 Jackson St.; 343-3372), and The YNGodess Shop (73 Main St. 343-3170).

Tickets are $20/person which includes wine tastings at local businesses and a commemorative glass. VIP tickets are $30/person and include early admission at 3 p.m., wine tastings at local businesses and a commemorative glass and wine holder tote. Designated driver tickets are $5/person, which includes admission to the event with complimentary drinks and snacks at different participating businesses.

The event is a great way to bring people Downtown, enjoy the fall season, and get to know your local business persons. You must be 21 to participate and show proof of age at registration. Check Facebook for updates, wines, and businesses!

If anyone would like to help decorate the Downtown with fall decorations the weekend before, on Sept. 26th at 8 a.m., please contact Laurie at (585) 344-0900, e-mail [email protected], or LIKE us on Facebook at DowntownBataviaBusinessImprovementDistrict.

August 15, 2015 - 8:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, downtown, Summer in the City, BID.










To purchase prints, click here.

August 13, 2015 - 3:00pm

CALLING ARTISTS OF ALL AGES: Enter for a chance to win one of several great prizes, including our top prize of $250 for 1st Place! Right now we have very few adult artists signed up to chalk so your chances of winning big are, well... BIG! We also have a People's Choice category for the public to vote on their favorite with the winner receiving a gift basket from Alex's Place Restaurant!

Teens can walk away with a $75 cash prize and our youth prize is a $75 gift basket from Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle! The contest takes place during Summer in the City this Saturday, Aug. 15th. Artists can start at 9 a.m. and work until 5 p.m. Judging and awards will be presented immediately after and announced on stage!  Artists can enjoy food, drinks and entertainment from the Summer in the City festival.  

With every artist's registration, you will receive a goody bag consisting of a box of 24 chalks to get started, an event T-shirt from T-Shirts Etc., and a Snapple beverage from CH Wright!  

If you are an area artist and are a member of GO ART! or Batavia Society of Artists, your registration is discounted by 50 percent!   

This contest is raising money for future art events through GO ART!, and will help fund the youth art program at GO ART!, which helps bring art programs to children all around our county.  

A huge shout out to our platinum city sponsors that have made this event possible: Main Street Pizza Co., Alex's Place, Batavia Business Improvement District, Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle, CH Wright and T-Shirts Etc.! And many many more! Register today by click here.

July 30, 2015 - 5:15pm
posted by Traci Turner in batavia, business, BID.


Tomorrow is Don Burkel's last day as the executive director of the Batavia Business Improvement District.

Burkel just has to tidy up his desk before he passes the torch to incoming director Laurie Oltramari.

Burkel was the first director of the BID and has been leading the not-for-profit organization for almost 17 years. He has witnessed Downtown Batavia undergo many changes.

"When I started as the director, there was a variety of retail businesses in the city," Burkel said. "Now there are fewer businesses and properties are harder to fill with retail."

Although there has been a decline in the number of businesses, Burkel has overseen many positive changes as well. Some of his favorite projects include the transformation of buildings on Main Street and Jackson Street.

"I will miss working with the people of Downtown Batavia and seeing various projects completed," Burkel said.

Burkel believes people should focus on the positive aspects of Downtown Batavia and all of the potential small business opportunities it has to offer. In the future, he foresees development of the old Carr building and the construction of a boutique hotel. He also predicts more pop-up businesses will come to Downtown.

"I want to thank everyone Downtown for supporting me," Burkel said. "I know the BID's Board of Directors and committees will continue to further the vision for Downtown Batavia. I look forward to their accomplishments in the future and as I always say 'Shop Downtown!' "

To kick off his retirement, he is traveling to Maine with his wife to do some kayaking. He also plans to continue his photography and expand his collection.

July 30, 2015 - 2:52pm
posted by Traci Turner in batavia, BID, Beertavia.


(Laurie Oltramari, Derick Kane, Stephanie Crean, and Corey Wolcott)

The Ellicottville Brewing Company accepted its Beertavia plaque for its famous Blueberry Wheat Beer at Angotti's Beers of the World this morning.

The brewing company's Blueberry Wheat Beer won "2015 Western New York's Brew of the Year" for the best brew at the Beertavia event held on May 16, hosted by the Batavia Business Improvement District.

"It's fantastic to be receiving the award today," said Stephanie Crean, brewery sales representative. "Ellicottville Brewing Company is celebrating its 20-year anniversary and we have been making the Blueberry Wheat Beer for 15 years. The beer is one of our customers' favorites."

Corey Wolcott, manager at Angotti's Beers of the World, said the Blueberry Wheat Beer is a crowd favorite among the locals as well and sells out fast.

According to Laurie Oltramari, the incoming executive director of the BID, Beertavia was a huge success and she plans to make it an annual event. More than 14 craft brewers attended the event and two breweries are looking at spaces Downtown.

July 21, 2015 - 3:00pm
posted by Billie Owens in GO ART!, chalk the walk, Summer in the City, BID, batavia.

Press release:

The Batavia Improvement District’s Summer in the City festival presents GO ART!’s Chalk the Walk. As part of the bash that is Summer in the City, which is sponsored by the Batavia Improvement District, there will be some extra artistry and competition.

GO ART! will be presenting the second annual Chalk the Walk on Aug. 15th from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Artists, professional and amateur and young and old, will be able to purchase a square section of concrete by the City Center to decorate with chalk pastels. There will also be a children’s section for fun scribbling. Using materials available, artists will follow the theme “GO ART!...Where does art take YOU?” to create inspired pieces for a crowd of at least 2,000 people.

Prizes will be awarded to those whose pieces are most outstanding. Adult First Prize will be $250. People’s Choice Award will be a $20 Alex’s Place gift card, two T-shirts, and two mugs. The Youth Prize will be a basket of goodies worth more than $50.

A jury will select the winners for Adult First Prize and the Youth Prize. People’s Choice will be chosen by the general public by way of donation voting (ie: the art piece that receives the most donation money will be the People’s Choice winner). All donations collected for the People’s Choice Award will go to funding GO ART! youth programming.

To sign-up for this event, people need to register online at or register in person at GO ART!, 201 E. Main St., Batavia, from Tuesday through Friday between the hours of 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. People can also sign up and pay the day of the event but it is highly encouraged to do so ahead of time. Remember, no one is officially registered until payment is received.

Fees are $20 for adults (18+) and $10 for Youths (17 & under). Every registered artists will receive a box of chalks and a drink to get them started. There will be a chalk swap area where people can trade out their chalks for other colors they need. Artists are encouraged to bring their own chalks as well.

It is important to assure that each artist and their work, as well as the event itself, is respected, so there will be rules and regulations. These are available on the Web site at at

People can find updates on Chalk the Walk by going to the Web site: or by following Chalk the Walk on Facebook:

Chalk the Walk is currently seeking financial sponsors to make this exciting event happen and those interested should e-mail or call Gena Korn at [email protected] or at (585) 343-9313.

PHONE #: 585.343.9313
E-MAIL: [email protected]

July 17, 2015 - 4:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Jackson Square, batavia, downtown, BID.

Tonight's Jackson Square concert, featuring Penny Whiskey, is being moved to City Centre because there may be rain.

The show is at 7 p.m.

June 30, 2015 - 11:23am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Centennial, batavia, downtown, BID.


Press release:

Batavia Business Improvement District (BID), sponsor of the Centennial Arts, an outdoor arts display that took place on Tuesday, June 16th announces the winner of the People’s Choice Award.

More than 20 artists set up their works of art for display and for sale in Jackson Square. Those who attended the event were able to vote for their favorite artist or display as a People’s Choice Award. The winner of Centennial Arts was Susan Hoak, of Batavia, whose up-cycled furniture was considered “unique and creative” by several customers.

The Centennial Arts event was an effort to celebrate the City’s Centennial year as well as bring about awareness of the talented artists that are within the local region. Most artists were from Genesee County and one was from Warsaw. Pictures of the event can be see on the Downtown Batavia Business Improvement District Facebook page.

“Shop Local, Shop Downtown.” Sponsored by: Batavia Business Improvement District.   or more info  contact the B.I.D. Office at 585-344-0900 / visit  us at or  like us on Facebook at DowntownBataviaBusinessImprovementDistrict.

June 19, 2015 - 9:36am
posted by Traci Turner in public market, BID, downtown batavia.


The Downtown Public Market opened yesterday on Bank Street and Alva Place parking lot. The public market will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Thursday through the end of September. The public market offers a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, baked goods, maple syrup, crafts, flowers and homemade dog treats, and more. Stop by for lunch -- Alston's BBQ pulled-pork sandwiches, hamburgers and hot dogs are also available for sale.








June 17, 2015 - 3:00pm

Support your local farmers at your downtown farmacy in Downtown Batavia!

The Public Market is held on Bank Street & Alva Place Parking Lot from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Thursday from June 18th - Sept. 24th.

There you'll find fresh baked goods, vegetables, fruit, fresh cut flowers & herbs, dog treats, maple syrup, homemade sausage, jerky & smoked meats, handmade clothing, quilts, wooden toys & planters, pulled-pork sandwiches, hot dogs & BBQ sauces, and much more...

We'll have Master Gardeners from Cornell Cooperative Extension, drawings every week for a free gift basket!

SPONSORS: Java Farm Supply, DelPlato & Casey Law Firm
Interested vendors should call 585-344-0900
Market brought to you by: Downtown Batavia Business Improvement District

June 5, 2015 - 12:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in art, BID, Centennial Arts Fest, batavia.

Press release:

The Downtown Batavia Business Improvement District (BID) is sponsoring the Centennial Arts Fest, exhibiting artists work from 4 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, June 16, in Jackson Square. This event is in conjunction with the City of Batavia’s Centennial celebration.

Centennial Arts will be an outdoor gallery displaying artists of any age, media and location around Western New York. This is a free event for artists to display three or four pieces of their best work. The public is invited to browse and buy art during the show.

There is still room for artists to display and/or sell their work!  The B.I.D. Promotion Committee will be offering a $100 prize for the “People’s Choice” award for the best all-around artist.

If you are interested in exhibiting in Centennial Arts or have questions please contact Don Burkel at [email protected] or call (585) 344-0900 for an application.

June 5, 2015 - 8:41am
posted by Traci Turner in batavia, BID, business.


(Laurie Oltramari)

Laurie Oltramari, new Batavia Business Improvement District director, has a passion for urban design and architecture.

Oltramari is currently the assistant BID director and has worked with the organization for three and a half years. She will replace Don Burkel, director of the BID, who is retiring, and take over as the new director at the end of July. 

She was offered the director position after submitting her application and being reviewed by the BID hiring committee. The committee was formed to give more than 50 applicants a fair shot at the job. The committee included members of the BID board and community members.

As the new director, one task she would like to accomplish is to reach out to the public for their input and let Burkel's contacts know her door is always open. According to Oltramari, you need community involvement for a city to be successful. 

"I want to continue on the legacy that Don has left and what's been done and what has worked," Oltramari said. "Just like when you do a business you need to reevaluate every year so that's what I plan to do."

Another component she thinks is important for Batavia is the BID's ability to manage and balance event planning, help business development, and foster "placemaking," which is a quiet movement that is inspiring people to collectively reimagine and reinvent public spaces as the heart of every community. Placemaking is a multifaceted approach to the planning, design and management of public spaces that capitalizes on a local community's assets, inspiration, and potential, with the intention of creating public spaces that promote people's health, happiness, and well being.

"You have to create a place where people want to be and you can't just flap down some papers and put on your facade and your good to go," OItramari said. "It comes down to details and that is where her urban design background comes into play."

Oltramari was born in Hornell and grew up in Belmont. Her father owned an excavating and construction company, which is the reason she has always loved architecture and design. She received her undergraduate degree from SUNY Geneseo in 1999 and master's degree in Architecture and Urban Design in 2003. 

Oltramari has lived in Batavia for nine years with her husband, Felipe Oltramari, director of the Genesee County Planning Department, and their two daughters. Batavia is very different from the small town that she grew up in.

"I like Batavia because it's very family friendly and safe," Oltramari said. "It has all the amenities of a big city without being a big city. There is a real level of comfort here and it's big enough that you don't run into everybody you know but when you do it's really special."

For the future of small business in Batavia, she thinks businesses have to bring out the community in people like they used to. Face-to-face interactions and personal customer service gives small businesses an advantage against Internet businesses.

"I think the biggest competition is the Internet and it's back to TV again," Oltramari said. "People are doing the binge watching of Netflix so they will stay in and have food at home instead of going to a restaurant like people usually do for entertainment."

Upcoming BID events include the Jackson Square Concert Series, Downtown Batavia Public Market and the Centennial Arts Fest.

May 26, 2015 - 4:51pm
posted by Billie Owens in BID.

Press release:

The Downtown Batavia Business Improvement District (BID) would like to thank the Sun Catcher Garden Club for assisting this year in planting the flowers in the planters that are placed along Main Street and Ellicott Street. Volunteers from the Sun Catchers were Connie Moon, Barb DeFazio, Vicki Frieday and Jane LaWall.

With the financial assistance of the Batavia Rotary Club, the planters have wave petunias, coleus, and a central canna flower that will bring dramatic height and color to the overall design. The arrangement was historically chosen to highlight the City's Centennial celebration. The flowers were purchased locally through Pudgie's Lawn & Garden Center.

The BID is a nonprofit organization that works toward the revitalization of the downtown and is funded through the downtown property owners. The 14 large street planters in downtown were purchased by the BID as part of its downtown beautification program.

For more information contact the BID at 585-344-0900 or visit its Web site at

May 16, 2015 - 9:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Beertavia, batavia, BID, downtown.







May 16, 2015 - 12:43pm
posted by Billie Owens in Event, BID, Beertavia.
Event Date and Time: 
May 16, 2015 -
3:00pm to 6:00pm

Today is the inaugural Beertavia, a craft beer festival featuring more than 50 brews. The event takes place in the parking lot at Jackson and Center streets from 3 to 6 p.m. Tickets are $40; VIP tickets are $55; designated drivers pay $10. Tickets are available at Angotti Beverages, located at 61 Jakcson St., or from

Beertavia is brought to you by the Downtown Business Improvement District. Phone 344-0900.

May 7, 2015 - 12:00pm
posted by Lisa Ace in batavia, BID, ny, Sponsored Post, advertisement, Beertavia.

Sponsorship space available. For applications and information, contact Laurie Oltramari at 585-344-0900. Click here to purchase your tickets today or visit Angotti Beverages at 61 Jackson Street in Batavia!

April 30, 2015 - 5:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, business, downtown, BID.

The Batavia Improvement District held its annual luncheon this afternoon at the City Church Generations Center on Center Street.

Top photo: Steve Krna, vice president of Genesee Patrons, an insurance company, accepts a Spirit of Downtown Award.

David Boyce, CEO of Tompkins Insurance, receiving a Spirit of Downtown Award for Tompkins.

John Roche, Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle, was honored as a volunteer.

Mary Valle, Valle Jewelers, was also honored as a Volunteer of the Year.

The keynote speaker was Michael Schmand, executive director of Buffalo Place.

April 28, 2015 - 9:57pm
posted by Billie Owens in BID, art, Centennial Arts Fest.

Press release:

Centennial Arts Fest, Tuesday, June 16th, 4-8 p.m., in Downtown Batavia, will feature artists and crafts people exhibiting their art work in celebration of the City of Batavia’s 100th Year. This will take place in historic Jackson Square. Rain date: Tuesday, June 23rd.

This is free to all artists and crafts people who wish to be a part of our outdoor gallery. We are hoping to have 100 participants to make this a grand celebration of arts and culture in our community. The B.I.D. Promotion Committee is offering a "$100 Prize" based upon the “People’s Choice” award for the best all-around artist. Deadline for applications: Monday, May 18th!

Applications and info are available at: Downtown Batavia Business Improvement District, 200 E. Main St., Suite 12, Batavia NY 14020






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

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