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June 30, 2022 - 9:33am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, elba.

A motor vehicle accident with entrapment is reported in the area of 3919 Lockport Road, Elba.

One vehicle is off the roadway.

Elba Fire and Mercy EMS dispatched. Oakfield Fire and Town of Batavia Fire request to assist.

Mercy Flight dispatched,

Lockport is closed between Fisher Road and Route 98.

June 30, 2022 - 9:00am
posted by Alan Sculley in Josh Groban, darien lake performing arts center.

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In 2019, Josh Groban -- who performs at Darien Lake on Friday -- had gotten a good start on making a type of album that had long been on his to-do list, recording his versions of some of his favorite classic songs from pop and other genres.

Then the pandemic hit, interrupting work on the project. And when Groban returned to recording, he discovered that the album, “Harmony,” needed to change with the unusual times.

“The songs we chose had changed,” the popular vocalist said of the album, which was released in November. “What you want to say and the kind of songs you want to sing, it changes as the world changes around you. So different songs started to rise to the top as we were going through this crazy thing altogether.”

Two covers that came into play were the Joni Mitchell classic, “Both Sides Now” (on which Sara Bareilles joins Groban for a duet) and “The Impossible Dream.”

“I had really known it to be kind of the (Robert) Goulet, just kind of the big, bold, inspirational with a capital ‘I’ (song),” Groban said. “When I really looked at those lyrics, and when I found myself getting really emotional while I was singing it and how we’ve all tried to take these small steps forward in the face of these enormous challenges, it felt both politically, emotionally, health-wise, socially (right).”

Groban, whose nine studio albums have sold a combined 25 million copies, is beyond grateful and excited to be back on tour this summer and promised a show that will balance songs from “Harmony” with back catalog material and suited to the outdoor amphitheaters he’s playing.

“When you’re playing outdoors, so much of your environment is setting the tone already for you,” he said. “I made this mistake when I was younger trying to force-feed a big arena set into a bunch of outdoor sheds and I’m thinking ‘Oh my God, we’re wasting all this natural beauty trying to put all of these bells and whistles up here.’ So we’re really excited about the design for the summer tour because it’s classic, it’s going to be beautiful, it’s also going to let a lot of the natural beauty of these venues do the talking.”

Photo: Submitted photo.

Alan Scully is a freelance music feature writer.

June 29, 2022 - 7:26pm
posted by Joanne Beck in news, City Schools, Keep Kids Fed, notify.

Now that graduation is officially over, Batavia City School District is assessing its current summer meals program to potentially provide children with remote meals in July and August, Business Administrator Scott Rozanski says.

The review stems from an announcement this week about the Keep Kids Fed Act that funds free meals for children throughout the summer. That bill was signed into law and extends child nutrition waivers for schools, daycares, nonprofits and other meal providers, according to a press release from Senate Majority leader Chuck Schumer.

“No child should ever go hungry, and now schools will have the funding and flexibility needed to ensure kids stay healthy and fed this summer ... this bill gives our schools the support they need to continue to provide free nutritious meals and the flexibility they need to operate amidst the ongoing supply chain challenges,” Schumer said. “Summer is often the time of year when food insecurity is highest for children and this support comes just in the nick of time.”

Batavia’s district already has summer extended programs at Batavia High School-BOCES for breakfast, and at Batavia Middle School, Jackson Primary and John Kennedy Intermediate for breakfast and lunch, Rozanski said in response to questions from The Batavian.

Beginning this week (Monday, July 27) through Sept. 1, breakfast and lunch is also being provided to YMCA’s youth program Monday through Friday, and also Monday through Friday for the city’s Parks and Recreation program from July 5 through Aug. 12.

“Given the late announcement, we are in the process of determining how we can offer this important program for those children that are not involved in the programs previously listed,” Rozanski said. “Tentatively, we are looking at offering one to two options for remote meals from July 5 through Aug. 31, 2022.

“We first need to determine if we have sufficient personnel to staff either of these two options and, if not, what adjustments can we make to our current summer programs to be able to accommodate this program,” he said. “We are also waiting for the approval from NYS Child Nutrition (CN).”

District officials are hoping to receive definite word by Friday, he said. If the district receives approval for the additional option(s), it plans to publicly announce that to district residents, he said.

During the pandemic, Congress authorized the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to waive various school meal program requirements for school districts and increase reimbursement rates so that schools and meal program operators could continue to feed children. This allowed school districts across New York to make sure that students got meals all year long, including during the summer. 

These child nutrition waivers were set to expire Thursday, June 30. A recent  USDA survey showed that 90 percent of school districts food programs are depending on these waivers to offer free meals, with 92 percent experiencing supply chain issues and a quarter experiencing staffing challenges for their nutrition programs, according to the press release.

The fully paid-for Keep Kids Fed Act has been signed into law by President Biden.

For the full release, go HERE

Photo of a family celebrating during this past Saturday's BHS graduation ceremony at Van Detta Stadium in Batavia. Photo by Stephen Ognibene.

June 29, 2022 - 6:55pm

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When Buffalo singer/songwriter Max Muscato released his punchy single “Valarie,” in February, it ended a five-year drought since he last released music in the form of his 2017 debut album, “Act One.”

The reason for the break was Autism Rocks, a non-profit inspired by his brother, Sonny, who has autism. It works to keep people with autism on track by offering career preparation workshops in music, acting, film, and other arts while also raising funds and awareness for autism.

“I took three to four years off from my music career to make sure my brother was solid and the organization was great,” Muscato said in a late-June phone interview. “And now that it is where we want it to be – it’s self-sustaining – I told the board, I said ‘Guys, I’m going to focus back on my music career now. It’s what I’m meant to do.’”

So fans can be assured they’ll be seeing new songs from Muscato on a more frequent basis going forward. Muscato has been writing songs in the interim and going forward plans to release a new single every month or two, while building up his touring schedule.

Two of his shows will essentially be hometown events. On July 3, he opens for boy band the Backstreet Boys at Darien Lake Amphitheater, while for his July 6 show at Batavia Downs, he’s opening for hard rockers Theory of a Deadman. Muscato’s presence on these bills says something about the wide appeal of his music.

“It’s great because I love all kinds of music, really. If it’s a good song, it’s a good song,” Muscato said. “But growing up, I loved the Backstreet Boys and I listened to them all the time. I’m such a melody guy. Like if it’s catchy, I’m so hooked. And at the same time, Theory of a Deadman, they’re hard and I love hard rock. I found that across all genres of music, there is an aspect of pop. And those are the types of artists that rise to the top. Even in death metal, they do have certain bands that have catchy melodies and hooks. That’s why I gravitate to these types of bands. 

“So when we open for the Backstreet Boys, we’re going to do a stripped-down acoustic set with our congas and an electric cello will be with me,” he said. “And with my music, I have very catchy choruses. It’s pop-rock-oriented. So I think it lends itself very well to the Backstreet Boys in the way we’re going to do it. On the other side, at the same time, when we’re opening for Theory of a Deadman, that’s going to be a rock show and we’re playing the heavy rock songs that really punch you in the face. But they’re also super catchy.”

Photo: Submitted photo.

Alan Scully is a freelance music feature writer.

June 29, 2022 - 6:44pm
posted by Press Release in news, Richmond Memorial Library, Library Visits Program.

Press Release

Richmond Memorial Library in Batavia has received a $60,000 grant from the Muriel H. Marshall Fund for the Aging of Rochester Area Community Foundation for continued operation of the Library Visits Program (LVP).

Since 1997, The Library Visits Program (formerly SAGE) has delivered library services to Genesee County residents 60+ years old who are unable to visit the library due to long or short term illness, disability, or lack of transportation.

Through personalized visits, LVP staff and volunteers bring the library to caregivers and older adults to increase social interaction and improve their access to needed resources. Visits can include any materials that may be checked out of the library in addition to technology assistance for home computers and mobile devices.

Library Visits Program staff also deliver rotating mini-library collections to 15 elder care and senior resident facilities in Genesee County. Overall, the program serves around 500 older adults in our community.

The Rochester Area Community Foundation engages philanthropists and community partners to improve our eight-county region by promoting philanthropy that helps to create an equitable community and strengthen our region’s vitality. Since 1972, the Community Foundation has awarded more than $590 million in grants and scholarships.

For more information, visit www.racf.org.

To apply for services or volunteer for The Library Visits Program, please call Richmond Memorial Library staff at 343-9550 Ext. 6 or email [email protected]. For additional information, go to https://www.batavialibrary.org/libraryvisits

June 29, 2022 - 6:01pm
posted by Press Release in Stop DWI, news.

Press release:

STOP-DWI Coordinator announced today that Genesee County law enforcement agencies, including the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office and the Village of LeRoy Police Department will be participating in a coordinated effort with the STOP-DWI program to bring awareness to the dangers of impaired driving.

The statewide STOP-DWI High Visibility Engagement Campaign will start Friday, July 1, 2022 continuing thru Tuesday, July 5, 2022.  Americans love to celebrate the Fourth of July with family, friends, food and fireworks, but all too often the festivities turn tragic on the nation's roads. The fact is this iconic American holiday is also one of the deadliest holidays of the year due to impaired-driving crashes.

While STOP-DWI efforts across New York have made great strides in reducing the number of alcohol and drug related fatalities, still too many lives are being lost because of crashes caused by drunk or impaired drivers.

You can make a difference by having a sober plan to get a safe ride because impaired driving is completely preventable – all it takes is a little planning.  Visit www.stopdwi.org for more information. 

June 29, 2022 - 5:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, Stafford, Le Roy.

James N. Johnson, 54, of Conkey Avenue, Rochester, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property, criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th, DWI, aggravated unlicensed operation 3rd, and open alcohol container; Agnes M. Baugh, 22, of Curlew Road, Rochester, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th and criminal possession of a weapon 4th; and Maurice D. Bishop, 36, of Rauber Street, Rochester, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th.  On June 29, Sgt. Mathew Clor located a disabled black Honda Civic on Clinton Street Road, Stafford. The registration matched a vehicle reportedly stolen during a strong-arm robbery early in the morning of June 28. Deputy David Moore arrived on scene and assisted Sgt. Clor in detaining Johnson.  Two crack pipes were reportedly recovered in the vehicle with drug residue in the pipes. Baugh allegedly possessed a pair of brass knuckles.

Carlos Torres, 47, of Champlain Street, Rochester, is charged with DWI-drugs, criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th, and unlicensed operator.  Torres was arrested on a warrant, arraigned in Town of Le Roy Court, and released on his own recognizance. 

Andrew Joseph Draper, 43, of Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Draper is accused of shoplifting from Walmart on June 26.  He was booked at the Genesee County Jail and released on an appearance ticket.

Andrew Joseph Draper, 43, of Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt 2nd. Draper is accused of contacting a person he was ordered not to contact at 7:31 a.m., June 26. Draper was issued an appearance ticket.

Crystal Ann Mounts, 45, of Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Mounts is accused of stealing from Walmart at 7:23 a.m., June 26. She was issued an appearance ticket.

June 29, 2022 - 5:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, news, byron.

A shed fire is reported at 6410 Freeman Road, Byron.

Byron, South Byron, and Stafford fire departments are dispatched.

June 29, 2022 - 5:15pm
posted by Press Release in The House of Bounce, Harvester Center, batavia, business, news.

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Press release from the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce:

Today we helped celebrate the newest addition to Batavia, The House of Bounce!

Justina and Pat Rapone are local parents who saw a need for a children's indoor play space and birthday party center here in Genesee County. They were both born and raised in the Batavia area and are currently raising four children of their own. They wanted to provide an interactive space for children twelve and under to play, climb, jump, and explore!

They are located on the corner of The Harvester Center in Batavia and are now officially open for business! They can host private events, and birthday parties, and are also making the space available for open-play sessions.

Inside the facility, they have multiple bounce houses, ball pits, sandboxes, a rock wall and all sorts of other interactive equipment available for use. For parents, they have a private party room with tables and chairs that can be used for different kinds of events.

Welcome to Batavia, House of Bounce!

Find more information and how to book your experience at www.houseofbouncebatavia.com

Photos courtesy of the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce.

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June 29, 2022 - 5:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in west main wine & spirits, batavia, business, news.

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Chris Blossom has sold his business, West Main Wine & Spirits to T.J. Woodward.

Blossom provided this message for the community:

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Batavia community and the surrounding areas for supporting our business for the past 13 years.   I could not have done it without the support of my family, friends, amazing staff and especially our loyal customers of West Main Wine and Spirits. 

I would like to wish the new ownership all the best.  The store may be under new ownership, but you will still see familiar faces.

I couldn’t have had the success that I did without all of you.  It has been fun, challenging and more than I could have ever dreamed possible.  I have built friendships with customers and sales reps that I will always cherish.

A special thank you to my wife for her support behind the scenes and all staff members past and present.  I will forever have fond memories of being a business owner in Batavia!

Thank you!  Wishing you all health and happiness!

Chris Blossom

June 29, 2022 - 4:17pm

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The Colorado Avalanche captured the esteemed Stanley Cup on Sunday night, defeating the two-time defending National Hockey League champion Tampa Bay Lightning, 2-1, to take the best-of-seven series, four games to two.

Residents of the Centennial State will be celebrating their Avs’ first NHL title since 2001 with a parade and rally in downtown Denver on Thursday morning – and among the participants will be a Batavia native who holds the title of the franchise’s Director of Video Scouting.

Mike Battaglia, a standout goaltender for the Batavia High Ice Devils from 2004-2007 who went on to play at the collegiate and professional levels, has worked for the Avalanche for the past six years.

Speaking by telephone today from his apartment in Denver, Battaglia said he has had the opportunity to scout some of the young men who led the Avalanche to the NHL crown – players such as left winger J.T. Compher, right winger Logan O’Connor, center Nico Sturm and defensemen Cale Makar and Bo Byram.

“I did quite a bit of scouting, but I must clarify that none of these players fall directly on me,” he said. “We are a team and it was a group effort. I am just a small piece to the puzzle of a Stanley Cup winning team.”

An essential piece, at that, as Battaglia has put in countless hours traveling throughout the United States and Canada evaluating potential prospects for the team and working with the analytics’ department to compile pertinent data and statistical information for management.

ALL-STAR GOALIE IN HIGH SCHOOL

An All-Greater Rochester first team goaltender and New York State Second Team All-Star in high school, Battaglia went on to play club hockey at Niagara University – earning most valuable player honors – before moving on to Division III hockey at Geneseo State College.

After graduating in 2011, he took a summer internship with the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets in the marketing department and also ventured into video scouting and even was used as a practice goalie on several occasions. Battaglia tried out for the Cincinnati Cyclones and signed a pro contract with that team, staying there for a short time.

While at Columbus, Battaglia actually signed an NHL contract – for one day – when star goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky became ill before a game and was unable to play.

“We needed an extra goalie at that point and there was no emergency goalie then. Because I used to practice with the team every now and then – and because I was a goalie – they called me in the office in the press box and said that I needed to put my pads on,” Battaglia recalled. “And if the other guy gets hurt, you’re going in.

“So, I had my pads on, I was sitting in the locker room and I had to sign a contract. They even had a jersey all made up for me. It was definitely an interesting experience.”

When asked if he got in the game, he replied, “No. Thank God.”

'ON THE ROAD AGAIN'

In 2016, Battaglia began his full-time tenure at Colorado – finding himself on the road on the weekends scouting players and in the office during the week working with General Manager Joe Sakic and Assistant GM Chris McFarland. He said he is very close to McFarland, a Bronx native and fellow New York Yankees’ fan.

“I’m traveling to college games every weekend and do a lot of college free agency right now,” he said, adding that he attended more than 200 games this season. “Because when we're chasing the Stanley Cup, we're trading a lot of draft picks.”

Battaglia contributes to the evaluation process by communicating his thoughts on player skills and by matching the video he shoots with the “numbers” generated by the analytics staff.

“We do something called Identity Files where we're trying to capture all the players that we have interest in -- in the draft – and what they are, and what they're all about. And then when it comes to draft time, I'm the one who actually types the players’ names in a system that selects the players. It can be a little stressful.”

Colorado has one farm team, the Colorado Eagles of the American Hockey League – the same league that includes the Rochester Americans, who are affiliated with the Buffalo Sabres.

“We have the one farm team and many prospects that we’ve drafted who are playing college hockey or are in Europe or junior hockey in Canada,” Battaglia said. “I’m fortunate enough to touch a lot of pieces in our organization and see a lot of things. I work pretty much throughout all departments of the organization, and I am very grateful for that.”

NUPTIALS SCHEDULED FOR AUGUST

Battaglia is youngest son of Paul and Mary Battaglia of Batavia. His brothers are Paul Jr., Mark and Tim.

He said he and his fiancé, Stephanie Dupuis, will be getting married in August at a ceremony at Stephanie’s hometown of Windsor, Ontario, Canada.

“We met through work. I was scouting and she was working for a junior team in Windsor,” Battaglia said.

When talking about family, Battaglia said he owes much to what he learned from his mentors during his time as part of the Batavia High ice hockey “family.”

“I always will appreciate the coaches at Batavia,” he said, naming them all. “Paul Pedersen, Nate Korzelius, John Kirkwood, Mark Dahl, Peter Guppenberger, Jack Porter and John Zola. Those guys are really important in making it more than just hockey for me – showing how to do the little things and being a good person.”

Battaglia said there’s a chance that he will be able to transport the actual Stanley Cup to Batavia when he visits this summer.

“I haven’t heard if I get a day with the Cup yet but if I do I will bring it to Batavia if I’m allowed to,” he said. “I will keep you updated if that happens.”

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Batavian native Mike Battaglia is on cloud nine as he has his moment with the NHL's Stanley Cup following the Colorado Avalanche's victory over Tampa Bay. Submitted photos.

June 29, 2022 - 1:23pm
posted by Press Release in GLOW With Your Hands, workforce development, news.

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Press release:

GLOW With Your Hands is on the search for volunteers to help support the day-long, hands-on career exploration event for GLOW Region students on September 27, 2022.

Launched in 2019, GLOW with Your Hands is an annual hands-on career exploration event in which over 800 middle and high school students from 25 school districts in Genesee, Livingston, Orleans, and Wyoming counties learn about high-growth and high-demand career opportunities in agriculture, advanced manufacturing, and the skilled trades among others.

Volunteers are needed in all aspects of the event including hard hat and student bag assembly, post-event clean-up, table and chair setup, and guiding students throughout the day. Volunteers ensure the event runs smoothly in a timely manner. 

“The success of GLOW With Your Hands would not be possible without the help and hard work of our volunteers,” said GLOW Workforce Development Board Executive Director, Jay Lazarony. “Volunteers make the student experience worthwhile, educational, and enjoyable! There are many moving parts to the event, the more people helping us out, the better this day will be for our future generation.”

Annually, the event averages roughly 100 volunteers, with 50 – 75 individuals working directly with the students. Some volunteers will be paired with students individually for assistance. There are several vendors that rely on volunteers to facilitate a positive learning environment to make sure students are having fun and staying safe.

“Volunteers play an important role to encourage students to participate in hands-on career demonstrations and ask employers questions that can help them understand job opportunities in their own backyard,” said GLOW With Your Hands Volunteer Committee leader Karyn Winters. “We are a volunteer-based event, the people involved are invested in the future of GLOW region students and want them to take advantage of this opportunity.”

Volunteers must be at least 18 years or older. Additional information and volunteer applications are available here:https://www.glowwithyourhands.com/volunteer.

Additionally, GLOW With Your Hands leaders encourage community members to consider joining the program’s organizing committee and sub-committees.

“Our initial volunteers enabled GLOW With Your Hands to become a reality, and we welcome new leaders to support the continued growth of these opportunities,” Lazarony said. “Our organizing committee and sub-committees are always in need of new energy and new ideas as we build the best experience for our youth.”

June 29, 2022 - 11:17am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, batavia, notify.

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A motor vehicle accident with injuries, and is blocking, is reported at 390 West Main St., Batavia, in front of Tops.

There are multiple calls.  Some are reporting one vehicle, some reporting multiple accidents at that location. 

City Fire and Mercy EMS dispatched.

UPDATE 11:22 a.m.: There is entrapment.  Town of Batavia is requested to Station #1 to set up a landing zone for Mercy Flight.

UPDATE 11:27 a.m.: Le Roy Ambulance Service also requested to the scene.

UPDATE 11:37 a.m.: It appears that a Ford sedan was westbound on West Main Street and crossed over the center line at Lewiston at a potentially high rate of speed, and struck a white Jeep ahead of it at Lewiston and West Main streets. Heavy damage to both vehicles.

UPDATE 12:20 p.m.: State Police are investigating the accident and do not have enough information yet to say exactly what happened, Zone Sergeant Ben Fasano said. There were two people in each vehicle, all with serious injuries. Three people were transported by ground ambulance to Erie County Medical Center and one person by Mercy Flight to ECMC. One person had life-threatening injuries, and Fasano was uncertain which way -- by ground or Mercy Flight -- that person was transported.  Lewiston between West Main and Park Road is closed until further notice.

UPDATE 4:57 p.m.: Further information provided by Sgt. Fasano:

A preliminary investigation indicates the white vehicle was on SR-63 southbound, stopped at the light in the far left lane.  The black vehicle was eastbound on SR-5, crossed the center line, went across both westbound lanes of travel and struck the white vehicle.

None of the involved parties are considered to have life-threatening injuries.

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June 29, 2022 - 8:05am
posted by Joanne Beck in news, batavia, Business Improvement District, notify.

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Chris Suozzi’s word of the moment is "align."

As someone who is heavily involved in workforce development initiatives, especially with youth, Suozzi likes to bring that effort full circle -- into alignment -- for kids to see the why of what they’re doing.

Add in the fact that his father, Joseph, grew up in an era when kids were hands-on with projects, and he won a 1951 soap box championship with his own self-built miniature car. Who’d have thought that a modern-era miniature car derby would work so well into that mix? 

It all aligns perfectly with downtown officials' and Suozzi's goals.

“My dad grew up in the 50s … everybody is working with their hands, they're mechanically inclined, and then all of a sudden, we went away from that, and we went all towards a college thing. And then all of a sudden, now we're looking at, hey, we need technicians, we need skilled trades again, and plumbers and electricians and carpenters and builders,” he said during an interview with The Batavian. “So, it's trying to change the mindset, again, of parents, and guidance counselors … that you're successful if you're a mechanic or a technician, just like you would be as a doctor, or a lawyer, or whatever the case may be. Working with your hands is just as important as working in a textbook, so we’ve just got to level that out right now.”

Take Suozzi’s passion to get kids excited and more knowledgable about skilled trades and available local jobs, his father’s prior involvement and enthusiasm for building his own racing vessel, and add Batavia Business Improvement District’s interest in hosting a fun, family-friendly event, and the BID Boxcar Derby was born.

The race is set for August 27 down Ellicott Avenue in Batavia. Kids from two categories, ages 7 to 10 and 11 to 13, will make and decorate their own cars, use hands-on basic science, technology, math, and engineering skills in the process, and have fun discovering how such skills can be used in real life.

“That’s what excites me about doing these events,” Suozzi said.

BID Executive Director Shannon Maute liked the idea as a community activity, she said. Plus, she promised her former Eli Fish boss, Matt Gray, that she would bring a derby here in her new BID role.

"Matty used to hear the races going off from his house, and he used to run down to watch; it was one of his favorite childhood memories. So when I talked about doing more activities for kids, he asked that I bring back the 'soapbox derby.' Everyone I mentioned the derby to all had such great reactions and memories, that there was no way I wasn’t going to bring it back," Maute said. "This is a community-based event that we would like to grow bigger every year, and next year we may even have adults racing." 

She wants everyone’s children and grandchildren to also gain those same memories for when they’re older, she said.

Slots for the derby are nearly filled, with just a few left in each category.  Thanks to sponsorships from Genesee Gateway Local Development Corporation, GLOW With Your Hands and Genesee Lumber, registration for participants is $10, which includes the car materials, entry and a post-race picnic, Maute said. Volunteers are needed to help build the cars and on race day, from the start and finish lines to the check-in point.

Spectators are encouraged to line up along Ellicott Avenue, starting from Richmond Avenue and down the hill toward Washington Avenue. There will be 28 participants vying for a top winner spot through elimination rounds. A black and white checkered sign, ramps, hay bales and — hopefully, Maute said — lots of cheering and clapping for the racers.

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There will be first, second and third place winners in each of the two categories, and a grand winner will receive a memorial plaque in honor of Suozzi’s father Joseph, brother Patrick and sister Teresa Wormley, all of who died much too young, Suozzi said.

Participants will be able to pick up their materials at 10 a.m. July 23 in Jackson Square. They can stay and build their cars right there, or take them home and do it.

After Joseph Suozzi won his 1951 local championship, he went on to a race in Rochester, where he lost to another competitor who ended up racing in the nationals in Akron, Ohio. The trademarked term of Soap Box Derby was founded in Ohio, with the first race reportedly in 1933. Cars were not powered by gasoline or any other type of fuel; they simply rolled down the hill with a child inside.

According to Ohiohistory.org, Myron Scott, a Dayton reporter, covered one of these races and decided that children across the United States could enjoy this activity, so he began to promote it across the country. In 1934, Dayton held the first "All-American Race," where soap box racers from across the country brought their creations to race. The following year, the race moved to Akron, Ohio due to its hillier terrain. Since 1935, the All-American Soap Box Derby has taken place in Akron.

In 1936, Akron city officials decided to build a permanent facility for the race. With the assistance of the Works Progress Administration, one of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal programs, the city completed Derby Downs, a soap box racetrack, the website states.

Thousands of children from across the United States and from other nations -- including Joe Suozzi's competitor -- have come to race their creations at Derby Downs every year since the track's completion. The only exception to this was during World War II, when many activities, including soap box derbies, came to a halt so that people could concentrate on the war effort. 

Kids would use various materials, including wooden boxes and crates for soap or apples, random lumber, and wheels from roller skates, or bicycles. Suozzi remembers that his father kept the wheels from his derby car in the garage, and would talk about the thrill of the race.

BID is providing car kits, including the wood and wheels, valued at more than $200, Maute said.

“Not everyone can afford that. We want everyone to be able to do this,” she said. “It’s just something fun for the community.”

Gray was not available for comment.

For more information or to donate or volunteer, email [email protected]

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Submitted photos of Joseph Suozzi, top, Patrick Suozzi, and Teresa Wormley. Above, a slight but long incline from Richmond Avenue down Ellicott Avenue alongside Centennial Park will serve as the venue on derby race day. Photo by Howard Owens.

June 28, 2022 - 9:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news, crime.

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Batavia PD is looking for the public's assistance in identifying a man who is suspected of stealing more than $350 of Allegra from the CVS pharmacy on West Main Street.

The larceny took place today a little before noon.   

The suspect was last seen getting into the passenger seat of a white-colored SUV. It left the area heading westbound. 

If anyone recognizes the person pictured, please notify investigating Officer Nicole McGinnis by calling (585) 345-6350.

June 28, 2022 - 3:00pm


Welcome to 7420 Lewiston Rd in Oakfield. This beautiful property has everything you are looking for and more! The home site on just under 2 acres of land & with nearly 3,000 sq ft inside. This 5 bed, 3 full bath home has all the updates you want, the space you need, and so much room to entertain, inside and out! 1st floor has brand new life proof vinyl flooring throughout. Enjoy the large eat-in kitchen with island, formal living & dining room, lovely gas fireplace and bonus room complete with bar for fun nights with family and friends. Home has 4 good sized bedrooms on 2nd level, master with en-suite and hard to find 2nd floor laundry. Walk up attic is partially finished and could be turned into massive & private master suite, another party area, huge home office or just a place to escape! Enjoy the view of your large lot from the deck overlooking fire pit. Yard has electric pet fence already installed & don't forget about the 4 car garage. Roof and boiler 4 years old, and new electric. Purchase includes .92 acres separate parcel listed under 183889 8.-1-72. 

June 28, 2022 - 12:44pm
posted by Press Release in news, batavia, notify.

fixunitedway2017.jpg

Press Release

The City of Batavia announces the appointment of Erik Fix to the position of Assistant City Manager for the City of Batavia.  Fix was selected following an extensive search for candidates and active recruitment campaign.  Erik will assume his new role on Monday July 25th, 2022.

A Batavia native and life-long Genesee County resident, Fix holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Roberts Wesleyan College in Organizational Management.  He is currently serving as the President of the Chamber of Commerce for Genesee County.

Fix has served the City during the Police Reform Stakeholder meetings as a moderator guiding the City management, police department and residents through a comprehensive review of the departments current policies, training and procedures. He currently serves as a board member of the Genesee County Youth Bureau, the United Memorial Medical Centre Foundation, Genesee County Business Education Alliance, a member of the Batavia Rotary Club, and GLOW YMCA G-Force New Facility Planning Group. 

He also served as a member of the Local Planning Committee for the Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) and continues to support tourism and economic development in the City of Batavia. 

“Erik and I have known each other on a professional level for over a decade and I am thrilled that he wants to work for the City of Batavia and focus on housing and neighborhood issues in his new role as Assistant City Manager.  He will be responsible for creating and implementing a new Neighborhood and Housing Transformation Initiative, community development, assisting with flood plain management, risk management, cultivating organizational values, public relations and information technology,” said Rachael J. Tabelski, City of Batavia City Manager.

Fix is a 2009 graduate of Leadership Genesee where the class choose him and Tabelski to be the designated speaker at the graduation ceremony. 

Erik’s current position with the Chamber of Commerce has given him knowledge in the principals and practices of local municipalities.  He has the ability to lead teams, execute on high-impact projects, and recognize the global impact of decisions on the community and region as a whole. 

Erik, a graduate of Alexander High School, is currently the Assistant Swimming and Diving Coach of the Byron-Bergen Central School and lives with his family in the Village of LeRoy.  He lives with his wife, Susan and his three sons Brady, Jackson, and Carter.

Photo: File photo from 2017

June 28, 2022 - 10:58am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

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  • Problems, questions, concerns about the Deal of the Day? Email Howard Owens:   [email protected]

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