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September 15, 2019 - 12:51pm
Video Sponsor

Elba residents Dan Starowitz and Brian Shuknecht got started in lumberjack competitions while in college. Yesterday, along with their friend Nick Agoglia, they put on a demonstration of a competition at Cedar Street Sales and Rentals in Batavia.

September 14, 2019 - 5:54pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia HS, football, video.
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September 14, 2019 - 12:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, batavia, Batavia HS, football, van detta stadium.



A big night, a big crowd, a big win but the Batavia Blue Devils also suffered a big loss in the second quarter when Joshua Barber went down with an ankle injury.

The senior 230-pound lineman and linebacker is likely out for the rest of the regular season, at a minimum. 

"When you lose a player of that caliber, with that leadership, with that physical presence, it's a shot at the heart of the team," Head Coach Brennan Briggs said after the game.

He praised his team for the way they pulled together and fought through adversity after Barber was helped off the field with his leg in a splint. 

Batavia, Section V's #1 ranked team, beat the #2 team, and always a tough opponent, Livonia, 19-6.

"We know they're always going to be tough," Briggs said. "I'm proud of our guys. Our defense played great, and our offense, you know, obviously we didn't put up 50 points like everyone always expects, but at the end of the day, these are the games that you want to be in to test the character of your team."

Alex Rood at QB, Terrez Smith and Cody Burns in the backfield, carried the team offensively.

Rood had 90 yards on 17 carries and scored a touchdown. Smith scored on a four-yard run and Burns on a breakaway 56 dash to the end zone.

It was Batavia's first came on their new artificial turf field in the new Daniel A. Van Detta Stadium, which was dedicated before the game with a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by about two dozen of Van Detta's relatives.

"t's great," Briggs said. "I'm happy for the kids. I'm really happy for the community. I think that I didn't even really turn around and look at the crowd but I'm assuming it was a pretty good crowd up there. I'm just happy for everybody, honestly.

"You know everybody's been driving by, waiting for the opening of this and these guys had a lot of pressure on them just because of the amount of people here and the media and everything and they handled it well.

"For these young high school kids to come out here and play a gritty game and come out with a win, especially without one of their big-time leaders, it's a testament to their character."

Photos by Jim Burns.

NOTE: We'll have a video posted later today about the game and the opening of the new stadium.












September 13, 2019 - 8:43pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, batavia, news, scanner.

City fire is called to respond to the report of a large bonfire at 243 S. Swan St.

September 13, 2019 - 6:30pm

Open House Alert, This Saturday 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.  2 Naramore Drive, Batavia. Talk about a transformation! Check out this great 4 bedroom, 2 full-bath home with nothing to do but enjoy your life!

This home has been fully remodeled with all new hardwood flooring, 2 brand-new baths, modernized kitchen with all new appliances. Open and spacious kitchen/dining/living room perfect for entertaining and featuring an extra large island with pretty quartz countertop! Bedrooms are all very spacious with plenty of closet space.

There is oversized family room in lower level for all your rec room fun. There is also an awesome sunny and bright bonus room with lots of windows overlooking private back yard which has in ground swimming pool and plenty of privacy for all your summer fun!

This home is large bright and cheerful and ready for lots of energy! Easy to see! Click here for more information or call Lynn Bezon today at Reliant Real Estate, call 344-HOME (4663).

September 13, 2019 - 4:45pm
posted by James Burns in batavia, news, full moon.


(Moon pictured above from Sept. 12. Photo by Jim Burns.)

Look up to the sky tonight to see a rare Friday the 13th full moon.

Why is a full moon on Friday the 13th a big deal? It’s not unless you are among the 10 percent of Americans who say they are superstitious.

Sometime in the Middle Ages, Friday the 13th started being considered unlucky. The origin of this is traced to the 13 Apostles and the Last Supper being on Friday. Any 13 on a Friday was considered unlucky.

The full moon has been associated with superstition and mystical happenings in many cultures. The full moon has been accused of many things like, making people crazy and turning them into warewolves.

If you are of the 10 percent claiming to be superstitious, fear not the full moon on Friday the 13th. Technically the moon will not be completely full this month until after midnight, making the official moon full in the early hours of the 14th. 

If you are in the 90 percent of Americans who do not consider themselves superstitious, check the moon out tonight anyway.

The moon rises at 6:40 p.m .and sets at 5:02 a.m.

Tonight's weather is expected to be a little breezy and mostly cloudy, but the moon will be big and bright when the clouds do part.

September 13, 2019 - 2:58pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Oakfield.

Michael S. Colombo, 39, of Batavia, is charged with second-degree assault on an officer/firefighter/EMT. On Sept. 1, Mercy medics were transporting Colombo to Wyoming County Community Hospital when he allegedly became combative in the ambulance. He is accused of punching both EMTs in the face with a closed fist, causing injuries. He was later taken into custody and allegedly found to have an active arrest warrant for two counts of second-degree assault by the Batavia Police Department and the Wyoming County Sheriff's Office. Colombo is accused of head butting a Batavia Police officer during the exchange of custody, but he did not injure the officer. Colombo was arraigned in Warsaw Town Court and put in Wyoming County Jail on $25,000 cash bail or $50,000 bond. He is due to return to Warsaw Town Court on Sept. 16. The case was handled by WC Deputy Nowack and Deputy Houghton.

Kishonti D. Williams, 27, of Batavia, was arrested at 8:58 a.m. on Sept. 9 following a traffic stop by Wyoming County Sheriff's deputies on Route 246 in the Town of Perry. Deputies stopped him after allegedly observing him attempting to pass another vehicle on the right side as it was heading northbound. He is charged with aggravated unlicensed operation in the second degree. It is also alleged that he has 10 active suspensions on his driver's license. He is due in Town of Perry Court on Oct. 16. The case was handled by Wyoming County Sheriff's Deputy Daniel J. Kemp.

Sophie McGowan Cegielski, 18, of Pine Street, Oakfield, is charged with petit larceny. At 3:20 p.m. on Sept. 12, Cegielski was arrested at Oakfield-Alabama Central School on Lewiston Road in Oakfield. She is accused of stealing property out of another student's bag during after-school hours on Sept. 11. She was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Oakfield Town Court on Sept. 23. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy David Moore.

September 13, 2019 - 2:15pm

Information from a press release:

Along the Haunted History Trail of New York State, you will find the largest collection of haunted and Halloween events statewide.

Three sites on the trail are in Genesee County: the historic Seymour Place building at 201 E. Main St. in Downtown Batavia, home to GO ART!; Rolling Hills Asylum in East Bethany; and the Haunted Bergen House, built in 1858 and located at 6571 W. Sweden Road, Bergen.

More than 500 events -- from authentic ghost hunts and paranormal investigations to staged haunted houses and Halloween hayrides -- can be found on the Haunted History Trail's online event calendar, offered now through the end of October.

Ghost hunting is offered year-round in historic Palmyra and its William Phelps General Store, with special events in the fall.

Home to all things paranormal, 365 days a year, the Haunted History Trail features more than 90 authentically haunted locations across the state. These locations offer investigations, ghost hunts, guided tours, and other experiences that allow visitors to interact with the haunted side and seek out spirits during a dining experience, special event, or overnight stay.

But, during the "spooky season" in the time leading up to Halloween, the trail opens its offerings to all forms of haunted events -- from the serious spirits right down to the spirited pretenders.

"We see a lot of attention this time of year due to the season and the nature of our trail," says Kelly Rapone, administrator of the Haunted History Trail.

"People are seeking out opportunities to be scared -- whether that's on a guided tour that tells them about ghost sightings and the history behind them or experiencing a jump-scare as they go through a haunted house. We want to be their resource for all things haunted."

While many of the trail events lead up to Halloween as the major fall holiday, Sept. 28 also marks a holiday celebrated by select Haunted History Trail partners. It's "National Ghost Hunting Day," established in 2016, which "recognizes and celebrates the novice, curious and expert execution of ghost-hunting methods."

Several trail locations, including Palmyra's William Phelps General Store, East Bethany's Rolling Hills Asylum, and the Haunted Hinsdale House in Hinsdale, participate on that date in the "World's Largest Ghost Hunt" -- an international phenomenon that brings people together from across the globe to take part in a night of paranormal investigations.

Themes for the 2019 event will include historic preservation, celebrating haunted towns, and exploring cultural diversity within the ghost-hunting field around the world.

To learn more, visit the Haunted History Trail of New York State's website here.

To view the online trail brochure, click here.

About the Haunted History Trail of New York State

It is the only statewide ghost tourism initiative in the United States. It was created in 2013 by the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce in partnership with tourism promotion agencies across the state and with support provided by Empire State Development's I LOVE NEW YORK program under the Market NY initiative.

The Haunted History Trail of New York State features more than 90 haunted locations found within almost every region of New York State. Guided ghost tours, paranormal investigations, haunted dining and overnight stays are available on the trail, with many of the attractions tying back to New York's local history.

(Photo from Haunted History Trail of New York State website.)

September 13, 2019 - 1:20pm
posted by Billie Owens in marksmanship, sports, batavia, gun competitors.

Submitted photos and press release:

NEW TRIPOLI, Pa. -- Eugene Jankowski Jr. finished in third place Practical Division and fourth place overall at the 2019 Pennsylvania State 3 Gun Championship held Labor Day weekend at the Ontelaunee Rod & Gun Club in New Tripoli, Pa.

Jankowski worked through a rifle malfunction early in the match, adding a fraction of time that would later move him out of second place by a 10th of a second.

Approximately 144 competitors from Pennsylvania and the surrounding states completed eight challenging stages of fire during the two-day match.

Three gun competitors systematically used a handgun, rifle and shotgun to shoot a variety of targets from multiple positions during each of the eight courses of fire.

“Using the three different firearms feels like you’re shooting three different matches at the same time," Jankowski said. "It’s full of action and the clock is ticking.”

Jankowski is president of the Batavia City Council and a retired Batavia police lieutenant.

September 13, 2019 - 12:27pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news, roadwork.

From the city Bureau of Maintenance:


Temporary road closures planned Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 16-17 in the City of Batavia are delayed.The new dates are Tuesday, Sept.17 and Wednesday, Sept. 18:

These road closures will now occur on Tuesday:

  • Florence Avenue -- Between Cedar Street and Howard Street.
  • Carolwood Drive – Between Garden Drive and end of road.
  • Belvedere Lane – Naramore Drive to Naramore Drive.
  • Woodcrest Drive – Between house #2 and #15.

The following roadwork is now planned for Wednesday:

  • Union Street –Between Richmond Avenue and Oak Street. This impacts residents that live on Union Square limiting access. Any work not completed Tuesday is also going to be completed.

Residents will be notified by the company performing the work, Suit Kote, of the actual work schedule via fliers delivered door to door on the impacted streets a day in advance.

Residents of impacted areas are asked not to park on these streets while the work is ongoing and to park on adjacent side streets if possible.

This work is weather dependent and if delayed due to wet conditions the work will resume the next business day.

Contact the Bureau of Maintenance and ask to speak to the Superintendent at 585-345-6400, opt. 1, if you have any questions.

September 13, 2019 - 12:05pm

Press release:

Ithaca Beer Co. and Batavia Downs announced today they will launch the sale of the new Thurmanator Beer at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 19th at the 34 Rush Sports Bar.

“We’ve been looking forward to this special release for some time," said James Sapienza, head of Brand Development for Ithaca Beer Co. “The Thurmanator beer is an easy-drinking lager we hope will score big with hardcore Buffalo football fans, as well as those seeking a refreshing and crisp, light golden lager with a subtle sweetness and restrained hop character that lends a gentle floral quality and clean finish.”

The public event will include an appearance by the beer’s namesake, Buffalo Football Hall of Famer Thurman Thomas, and sampling from many of Ithaca’s line of products while attendees enjoy the Thursday Night Football game on the big screens.

Batavia Downs is located at 8315 Park Road in the City of Batavia.

About Ithaca Beer Co.

Begun in 1998 in a small renovated retail store just outside of Ithaca, the original space had a small seven barrel brewhouse, a modest tasting bar and sold full growlers to go as well as homebrew supplies.

Today, Ithaca Beer brews about 25,000 barrels of beer per year and features both 50 and five barrel pilot brew houses. In addition to a state-of-the-art brewing facility, Ithaca Beer has fully automated packaging capabilities for bottling, canning and kegging.

Ithaca Beer distributes beer to 54 wholesalers in 14 states in the Northeast from New England in the East to Ohio in the West and Virginia and North Carolina to the South.

September 13, 2019 - 10:21am
posted by Howard B. Owens in van detta stadium, batavia, video, Batavia HS.
Video Sponsor

The new Daniel A. Van Detta Stadium officially opens tonight with a game between the Batavia and Livonia at 7 o'clock.

There will be a ribbon cutting at 6:30 p.m. and the public is invited.

September 12, 2019 - 6:37pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia.

From Alecia Kaus/Video News Service:

Malik I. Ayala, 27, of Walnut Street, Batavia, was to be sentenced on this afternoon (Sept. 12) in Genesee County Court, but he did not show up.

Public defender Jerry Ader told the court he could not appear today because he was admitted to an inpatient treatment program called Reflections at the Eastern Niagara Health System in Lockport.

The program is a chemical dependency treatment program available to adults ages 18 and over to help them recover from dependence on alcohol or other drugs. The program provides short-term treatment services.

Ader asked Judge Charles Zambito for an adjournment.

Ayala will remain at the inpatient facility until Oct. 2nd.

Ayala has already accepted a plea deal and pled guilty to a charge of third-degree burglary, a class D felony.

He was picked up on Nov. 15 in connection with a string of burglaries in Genesee County after Investigator Chris Parker with the Sheriff’s Office identified a vehicle that was wanted in connection with the burglaries.

The vehicle was being operated by TeeSean T. Ayala, 20, Malik’s brother.

After the vehicle turned into a driveway at 317 Washington Ave., a .22-caliber semi-automatic pistol was thrown from the vehicle. The Sheriff’s Office says TeeSean Ayala was in possession of a stolen handgun that had a defaced serial number in the vehicle during the traffic stop.

TeeSean Ayala, 20, of Batavia, was sentenced in Genesee County Court to five years in prison and five years post-release supervision last month. TeeSean pled guilty to one count of criminal possession of a weapon, 2nd, which satisfies seven other residential burglary charges dating back to 2015.

Due to Malik I. Ayala’s criminal history, First Assistant District Attorney Melissa Cianfrini opposed the adjournment today.

“We feel he is a second felony offender, prison is mandatory, we are opposed to this adjournment,” Cianfrini said.

Judge Zambito explained that there was no commitment on sentencing and that Ayala was not recommended for the inpatient treatment.

“The fact (is) that he is in treatment; we will adjourn until afterwards,” Zambito said.

The new sentencing schedule is 9:15 a.m. Oct. 3.

September 12, 2019 - 6:19pm
posted by Billie Owens in Ghost Walk, history, batavia, hlom, news.

Press release:

Back and expanded by popular demand, please join the Holland Land Office Museum for a Westside Ghost Walk on three Fridays in October.

The walks led by Connie Boyd will take place at 7 p.m. on Oct. 11, 18, and 25.

Take a walk on the Westside and hear tales of murders, hangings, grave robbing, ghosts and other eerie happenings from Batavia's past.

Hear stories of Joseph Ellicott, E. N. Rowell and other famous and infamous Batavians.

Admission is $10 and reservations are required.

Tours are limited to 25 people each. The tour begins and ends at the museum and is approximately one-and-a-half to two hours in length.

For tickets or more information, please call (585) 343-4727, email at [email protected], or stop by at 131 W. Main St., Batavia.

(Also, be sure to check out the Old Batavia Cemetery's Guided Ghost Walk on Saturday, Oct. 26; must RSVP by calling the Batavia Cemetery Association at (585) 943-5662.)

September 12, 2019 - 6:06pm

Living history reenactors portraying Dean and Mary Richmond; taken by Howard Owens on Oct. 13, 2012.

Press release:

Join us to meet the famous and infamous movers and shakers who shaped and influenced the City of Batavia on Saturday, Oct. 26th, when the Batavia Cemetery Association will host a candlelight guided ghost walk through the Historic Batavia Cemetery on Harvester Avenue in Batavia.

The guided tour on candlelit paths will bring guests to meet men and women of Batavia, who, for various reasons, held great power and exerted great influence in their day, were victims of tragic events, or both.

Philemon Tracy, one of the few Confederate officers buried in the North; Ruth the unknown -- victim of a horrendous murder; Joseph Ellicott, a man of great power and great flaws; and William Morgan, the man who disappeared and was allegedly murdered before he could reveal the secrets of the Masons, are some of the ghosts who will tell their stories on the tour.

Also visiting will be Civil War veteran General John H. Martindale, who was Military Governor of the District of Columbia in 1865.

Dean and Mary Richmond, who greatly influenced civic life in Batavia in the 1800s, will meet with guests in their mausoleum on the last stop of the tour. Dean Richmond made a great fortune in Great Lakes shipping and was the second president of the New York Central Railroad. Mary Richmond vastly expanded her husband’s fortune after his death and sat on the boards of many businesses and civic organizations.

Come and have some spooky fun! Tours begin at 7 p.m. and run every 15 minutes until 8:30.

Admission is $10 and includes refreshments. Reservations are required. For more information, or to make reservations, contact (585) 943-5662.

Proceeds benefit the upkeep and restoration of the cemetery.

September 12, 2019 - 4:46pm

Press release:

Sixth Annual Taste of Independence food-sampling extravaganza is being held by Independent Living of the Genesee Region (ILGR) from 5:30 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 17, at Ascension Parish -- Slomba Hall, 17 Sumner St., Batavia.

Guests can try some signature dishes of the Genesee region’s finest restaurants, plus a Live Auction, a basket raffle and 50/50 split club.

Among the restaurants that have signed on (in alphabetical order): Batavia’s Original Pizzeria; Black Creek Cidery; BW’s Restaurant & Banquet Facility; Eat Well Grill – Batavia; Eden Café & Bakeshop; Farmer’s Wife; Fishtails Hideaway; GVEP (Genesee Valley Educational Partnership) BOCES; Main St. Pizza Company; Pizza 151; Pizza Land; Smokin’ Eagle BBQ & Brew; T.F. Brown’s Restaurant; Tim Hortons; and Wegmans Food Market (Brockport).

Our thanks to non-restaurant event Bronze Sponsors: Crickler Vending Company Inc.; Design & Drafting by Gina LLC, Elderwood Residences, Fidelis Care; iCircle Care; United Healthcare Medicare Insurance; and Friend Sponsors: Fox Farm; and Gerace Realty. Additional sponsors would be welcome.

Tickets are $20 and can be picked up at the new ILGR office in the Crickler Building (former Pepsi Building), 319 W. Main St., Suite 10, Batavia. Space is limited!

To R.S.V.P., become a sponsor, or get more information call Donna Becker at 585-815-8501, ext. 411, or email: [email protected]

Funds raised will be used to help people with disabilities living in Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming counties who are in emergency situations with employment, or moving forward with life goals, when there are no other financial resources available. 

ILGR's services include independent living skills training, advocacy, peer counseling, diabetes self-management classes, a loan closet of medical equipment, housing and employment assistance, Social Security and Medicaid assistance information and referral, and many more.

September 12, 2019 - 12:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Basom.

Darel D. Tingue, 29, of Main Street, Arcade, is charged with: trespass; criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree; and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree. Tingue was arrested on Sept. 10 after allegedly causing a disturbance at UMMC. He was asked to leave and not return, but he allegedly did return and was arrested at 10:01 a.m. for trespass. He was found at the time to allegedly possess a controlled substance and cocaine. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and jailed on $10,000 cash bail or $20,000 bond. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Darryle Streeter.

David Allen Bogue, 52, of Maple Street Road, Basom, is charged with driving while intoxicated and failure to keep right. Bogue was arrested at 2:58 p.m. Sept. 10 on Lewiston Road in Batavia after the investigation of a one-car accident. He was issued an appearance ticket for Oct. 24 in Batavia Town Court. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Deputy Travis DeMuth.

Jason R. Anderson, 38, of South Main Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree -- with a previous conviction. Anderson was arrested following a Probation residence check at 12:09 p.m. Sept. 7 at his apartment on South Main Street. He was issued an appearance ticket and was due in Batavia City Court Sept. 10. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Miah Stevens.

Nicole Lee Woodruff, 39, of South Academy Street, Medina, is charged with petit larceny. At 5:54 p.m. on Sept. 11, Woodruff was arrested for allegedly stealing property from Sally Beauty Supply in the Towne Center at Batavia on Veterans Memorial Drive. She was released on an appearance ticket for Sept. 26 in Batavia Town Court. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Deputy Eric Meyer.

Keriann Barbaritz, 40, of Pratt Road, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. At 2:45 p.m. on Sept. 10, Batavia police were requested for a shoplifting incident at a business on West Main Street in the city. Barbaritz was arrested, processed at the scene and released on an appearance ticket. She is due in Batavia City Court on Sept. 24. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Adam Tucker, assisted by Officer Jason Davis.

Rae Charlene Cook, 30, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. She was arrested as a result of an arrest warrant issued by Batavia City Court for this alleged incident which occurred at 3:57 p.m. Aug. 26 on East Main Street in Batavia. She was arraigned in city court on Sept. 11 and jailed in lieu of $250. She was due back in court this morning (Sept. 12). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan, assisted by Officer Peter Post.

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