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March 4, 2019 - 5:03pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, business, Announcements, batavia, meat auction, BBPW.

There will be a meat auction on Friday, April 5, at Ascension Parish in Batavia to benefit Genesee County scholarships and service organizations. It is hosted by the Batavia Business & Professional Women's Club Inc.

Cost to attend is $10 and includes food, beer and soda pop. No outside food or drink allowed.

Tables for eight can also be reserved for $64.

Tickets are presale only and the deadline to buy them is April 3.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the first drawing is at 6:45.

Bring your dollar bills and a cooler for your winnings.

There will also be a 60/40 raffle and more.

The church is located at 17 Sumner St. in the City of Batavia.

Contact any BBPW member or Michelle Gillard at 297-0779 or email  [email protected]

Or Alice Chapell at 344-2193 or email [email protected]

March 4, 2019 - 3:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in warrants, news, batavia.

The following people are wanted on warrants issued out of Batavia City Court. If you have any information on the whereabouts of these subjects, please contact the Batavia Police Department at (585) 345-6350.

Do not make any attempt to apprehend these individuals on your own.

If you have an active warrant and want to avoid ending up on a WANTED list like this, the Batavia Police Department would be more than happy to assist you on resolving the warrant.

brianmug2019hawkins.jpg brittneymug2019johnson.jpg johnmug2019gallt.jpg
Brian J. Hawkins, age 39
Charge(s): prohibited sale of alcohol to a minor.
Brittney E. Johnson (AKA Jones), age 31
Charge(s): aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, 3rd degree
John M. Gallt, age 31
Charge(s): driving while intoxicated and operating a motor vehicle without a license.


Justin T. Gladney (AKA Frazier), age 29
Charge(s): criminal impersonation, 2nd degree, falsifying business records, three counts of petit larceny, and one count attempted petit larceny.
March 4, 2019 - 2:47pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, corfu, batavia, Le Roy.

Brian Wilson, 30, no address noted, of Corfu, was arrested on two counts of reckless endangerment after deputies say he was driving in wintry conditions without his headlights on. Wayne County Sheriff's deputies said he drove without headlights in two separate incidents on Route 104 and Lake Avenue in Williamson early this morning in the predawn hours (March 4). Deputies allege he was driving at a high rate of speed on Lake Avenue. Both of those incidents, deputies say, took place before sunrise and during snowy weather conditions, with roads covered in snow. Wilson was put in Wayne County Jail on $250 cash or $500 bond.

Armando M. Teruel, 35, of Black Spruce Court, Amherst, is charged with second-degree contempt. He was arrested on Feb. 25 on a Batavia City Court warrant. He is accused of violating a stay away order of protection that was issued on May 13 by contacting the protected party. He was released on his own recognizance. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Ivison.

Spencer Alan Luthart, 22, of Mill Street, Middleport, is charged with: driving while intoxicated -- first offense; DWI with a BAC of .08 percent or more; unlawful possession of marijuana; operating a motor vehicle without an inspection certificate. Luthart was arrested at 1:32 a.m. on March 3 on Wolcott Street in Le Roy after he was stopped for alleged traffic and vehicle violations. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Le Roy Town Court on April 11. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Andrew Mullen, assisted by Deputy Jenna Ferrando.

Aiken R. Ahdeosun, 20, of Ellicott Avenue, Batavia, was arrested March 1 by Batavia police after he was spotted walking on Thorpe Street. He had a bench warrant out of Batavia City Court for failure to appear on a charge of petit larceny that occurred at 1:30 p.m. on Jan. 18 at the M&T Express Mart at 100 W. Main St. in Batavia. He was also charged with bail jumping back in September for failing to appear in court on another matter in August. After his arraignment, he was jailed in lieu of $5,000 cash or $10,000 bond. He was due to return to city court today (March 4). The cases were handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Officer Stephen Quider.

Joseph W. Freeman, 34, no address provided, is charged with petit larceny. He was arrested at 10:27 a.m. on Feb. 27 at Tops Market in Batavia after allegedly shoplifting. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and found to have a bench warrant issued Jan. 31 for failure to appear concerning an unspecified incident. After arraignment, he was jailed in lieu of bail and is due in city court on Tuesday (March 5). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller, assisted by Officer Frank Klimjack.

March 3, 2019 - 8:43pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in terry hills, Bridal Show, batavia.
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March 3, 2019 - 3:08pm

Brian Carl Falk, 36, of 12 Irving Parkway, Oakfield, is charged with second-degree criminal tampering. On Feb. 26, the Genesee County Sheriff's Office was contacted by the Village of Oakfield Department of Public Works for the report of a larceny. It was alleged that a resident in the village unlawfully made a connection with the main water line to his residence after being advised that the connection was terminated. Following an investigation, it is alleged that Falk, without having any right to do so, nor any reasonable ground to believe he had such right, made a connection with the Village of Oakfield's water line. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Town of Oakfield Court at 6 p.m. on Monday, March 4, to answer the charge. The case was investigated by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Ryan DeLong.

Ronald G. Besemer-McLean, 37, of Portland Parkway, Rochester, was arrested on Saturday, March 2, by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with: one count of aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the first degree, a Class E felony; one count of tampering with physical evidence, a Class E felony; and one count of resisting arrest, a class A misdemeanor. On Saturday at approximately 8:12 a.m. the on-duty patrol was requested to respond to the area of Route 19 and the onramp to the Thruway entrance for the report of a subject passed out at the wheel of a vehicle in that area. Upon arrival, the officer found Besemer-McLean asleep in the driver’s seat. During the investigation, it is alleged that he drove there after leaving an unknown location in Greece. Besemer-McLean has a revoked NYS driver’s license. When attempting execute the arrest, Besemer-McLean allegely failed to comply with the officer’s orders and a struggle ensued. Besemer-McLean allegedly took an item that was evidence pertaining to the investigation, placed it in his mouth and swallowed it. A portion of the investigation was conducted by members of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Officer and NYS Police also assisted. Additional charges are pending. After arraignment in Le Roy Town Court, Besemer-McLean was jailed in lieu of $15,000 bail. He is to return to the Le Roy Town Court on March 5 to answer to the charges. The report says: "The Le Roy Police Department would like to say a special thank you to the citizens that took the time to stop and assist the officer."

Philip Joseph Severino, 42, of Pratt Road, Pembroke, is charged with second-degree assault and endangering the welfare of a child less than 17 years old. Severino was arrested March 1 after an investigation into a domestic incident involving an assault victim and two children that occurred at 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 20 on Pratt Road in Pembroke. After his arraignment in Town of Batavia Court, the defendant was jailed in lieu of $2,000 cash or $4,000 bond. He is due Town of Pembroke Court on March 12. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Michael Lute, assisted by Deputy Mathew Clor.

Lawrence John Isaac, 66, of Brant Reservation Road, Irving, is charged with second-degree harassment -- physical contact. Following an incident that occurred on Bloomingdale Road on the Tonawanda Indian Reservation on Feb. 16, Isaac was arrested on Feb. 28. It is alleged that he shoved a person while at the Community Center. He was arraigned in Town of Alabama Court and is due to return there on March 7. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Jeremy McClellan.

Eric J. Bratcher, 30, of Fargo Road, Stafford, was arrested on March 1, by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with one count of endangering the welfare of a child, a Class A misdemeanor, and one count of harassment in the second degree, a violation. The Le Roy Police Department investigated a complaint alleging that Bratcher made threats to harm another individual, at the time the incident occurred Bratcher was holding an 18-month-old child. After a brief investigation, Bratcher was located and taken into custody without incident. Bratcher was arraigned in the Le Roy Town and released under supervision of Genesee Justice. He is to return to the Le Roy Town Court on March 14 to answer to the charges.

Jessica R. Sylvester, 26, of Myrtle Street, Le Roy, was arrested on Feb. 28 by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with three counts of criminal contempt in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor. The Le Roy Police Department investigated a complaint alleging that on three occasions Sylvester violated a court order restricting her contact with the victim. Sylvester was arraigned in the Le Roy Town Court and released under supervision of Genesee Justice. She is to return to the Le Roy Town Court on March 14 to answer to the charges.

Derrick E. Pickard, 59, of Genesee Street, Le Roy, was arrested on March 1 by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with: one count of driving while impaired by drugs, a misdemeanor; one count of consumption of alcohol in a motor vehicle, a violation; and one count of failure to keep right, a violation. On March 1 at about 11:24 a.m. the Le Roy Police Department was notified by an off-duty patrol that they had almost been struck head on and had the operator of the vehicle detained. It is alleged that Pickard failed to maintain his lane while operating his motor vehicle, almost causing an accident. Following a brief investigation, it was determined that Pickard was allegedly operating the motor vehicle under the influence of drugs. He was taken into custody without incident. He was issued several tickets and turned over to a family member. Pickard is to appear in the Le Roy Town Court on March 14 to answer the charges.

Jason Jonathan Forte, 47, of Trelawne Drive, Irondequiot, is charged with: driving while intoxicated with a BAC of .08 percent or more; DWI; and failure to yield the right of way when entering the roadway. Forte was arrested following the investigation of a motor-vehicle accident which occurred at 7:48 p.m. on Feb. 28 on West Main Street Road in Batavia. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy James Stack, assisted by Deputy Mathew Clor.

Elizabeth Mary Johnson, 39, of Batavia, no address noted, is charged with: driving while intoxicated with a BAC of .08 percent or more and drinking alcohol in a motor vehicle on a highway. Johnson was arrested at 1:24 a.m. on March 2 on Indian Falls Road in Pembroke after she was allegedly found by law enforcement while she was asleep in a motor vehicle with its engine still running. Johnson is due in Town of Pembroke Court on March 21 to answer the charges. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Austin Heberlein.

March 3, 2019 - 2:30pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, walmart.

County patrols have been told to be on the lookout for a 2007 blue Hyundai Sonata​ that was reported stolen at about 12:30 p.m. from the parking lot of Walmart.

The driver who left in the vehicle is described as a white male, late 40s or early 50s, wearing a white jacket.

The vehicle was last seen southbound on Route 63.

March 3, 2019 - 1:57pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, business, hlom, antique show, batavia.

Press release:

The Holland Land Office Museum still has openings for antique dealers or vendors for its 13th Annual Batavia Antique Show and Sale on Friday and Saturday, April 5th and 6th.

The antique show will take place at the Richard C. Call Arena on the Batavia campus of Genesee Community College, located at One College Road, Batavia. 

The event opens on Friday, April 5th, at 5 p.m. and continues until 8 o'clock. It reopens Saturday, April 6th, at 9 a.m. and ends at 3 p.m.

If a vendor is interested in participating the details for the show are as follows:

  • Each show space is 16’ x 16’; with a chair provided with the rental, for a price of $80; and subsequent spaces will be discounted $10 per purchase;
  • Tables can also be rented for an additional charge of $10 per table;
  • Setup time for the show will begin on Friday, April 5th, beginning at 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Displays can be taken down after 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 6th;
  • Advertising will also be provided for all participants to be distributed as needed.

For more information about the 13th Annual Batavia Antique Show and Sale, please contact the Holland Land Office Museum at 585-343-4727 or [email protected]

March 2, 2019 - 8:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, business, batavia, notify, upstate niagara, ag park.

An executive with Upstate Niagara Cooperative Inc. announced that it has signed a purchase agreement to buy the Alpina Foods plant in Batavia.

Larry Webster, chief executive officer of Upstate Niagara, broke the news at tonight's Genesee County Chamber of Commerce awards ceremony at Quality Inn & Suites in Batavia.

The Alpina plant is located in the Genesee Valley Agri-business park at 5140 Ag Park Drive West. The plant operated by the yogurt maker closed in January.

UPDATE 10:20 p.m. (by Howard): After tonight's Chamber awards, Webster said Upstate's immediate plans for the former Alpina plant aren't settled but that acquiring an ultramodern dairy-processing facility in a strong milk shed where Upstate has been looking to expand was too good of an opportunity to pass up.

"The way I termed it, it's the farm next door," Webster said. "When it came up for sale we were looking to expand and so it just kind all worked out well."

The plant represents a $60 million investment by Alpina, a Colombia-based company that attempted to crack the U.S. greek-yogurt market by opening the plant in the Genesee Valley Ag-Business Park five years ago. Webster said Upstate will pay somewhere in the neighborhood of the $20 million to $25 million asking price on the plant but said he wasn't ready to disclose the purchase price.

"We just knew that it was an opportunity to pick up a production-ready plant in our area and so we did," Webster said. "We're not 100-percent sure exactly what we're going to do there yet."

The plant will be filled, Webster said and he expects that the plant is ready to employ 40 to 60 people, and more if the plant expands. Part of what attracted Upstate to the property is that while the plant sits on a 10-acre parcel, there is a 10-acre parcel next to it that is vacant but is included with the purchase.

"That makes room for expansion, which we were interested in," Webster said. "It's in the right place at the right time and ready to go. We've got some customers that we think could fit in there quite well and we could utilize it fairly quickly."

Frequently, Upstate operates on a co-packing basis with clients who need a production facility for their dairy-product brands. Webster indicated he expects that's how the former Alpina plant will be used.

The purchase offer was signed Thursday and is contingent on a due-diligence process but Webster didn't expect any issues to arise before the acquisition is final.

The project will likely also be eligible for an incentive package from the Genesee County Economic Development Center, which also provided more than $700,000 to Alpina to build and expand the plant, according to a source who was at Saturday's dinner. The scope and nature of the incentive package has not yet been settled on. 

When Massachusetts-based HP Hood bought the former Muller Quaker plant, which is also in the ag park, it also negotiated an updated tax-abatement package with GCEDC.

Webster said he doesn't expect Upstate will follow the example of Dairy Farmers of America, which purchased the former Muller Quaker plant across the street and flipped it to HP Hood a year later without ever producing any product at the plant.

"That's not in our plans at all," Webster said. "We bought it for our use and our history is just that. We've been operating plants for quite awhile and didn't buy it because we thought it was cheap and we could turn around and resell it or anything like that. We felt we paid a fair price for it but it's for our use."

March 2, 2019 - 2:06pm
posted by Billie Owens in accident, batavia, news.


A three-car accident with injuries is reported at Ellicott and Liberty streets. City fire and Mercy medics are responding.

UPDATE: Photos by Frank Capuano. No further information available at this time.



March 2, 2019 - 1:54pm

Press release:

The Alzheimer’s Association® Western New York Chapter is offering a number of free programs and supportive services across Genesee County in March.

Chapter dementia educators will present "Effective Communication Strategies" at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, March 13, at The Manor House at 427 E. Main St. in Batavia.

This program is ideal for care partners of those living with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia, as it offers verbal and nonverbal strategies for caregivers to more effectively understand and communicate. Dinner will also be served, so preregistration is required by calling 1.800.272.3900 or 716.626.0600.

Additionally, the Chapter trains facilitators to lead several monthly caregiver support groups across the county, which allow caregivers to connect with others facing similar challenges and hear advice for overcoming them:

  • Third Wednesday (March 20) at 7 p.m. – Richmond Memorial Library, 19 Ross St. in Batavia
  • Third Thursday (March 21) at 1 p.m. – Genesee County Office for the Aging, 12 Bank St. in Batavia
  • Second Monday (March 11) at 2 p.m. – The Greens of Le Roy, 1 West Ave. in Le Roy

Community social programs, or respites, are also available every month in Batavia and Corfu. This program provides relief to those who care for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia and offers them some time to refresh and re-charge, while their loved one is engaged in social activities in a safe environment.

First Presbyterian Church of Batavia offers this free service on the fourth Monday (March 25) from 10:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. For additional information, please call Mickey Rodak at (585) 455-5940.

Indian Falls United Methodist Church at 7908 Allegany Road offers a respite program on the third Wednesday (March 20) from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. For more information, call Celinda McQuiston at (585) 762-9105. 

To learn more about other Alzheimer’s Association programs and services, contact the WNY Chapter office at 1.800.272.3900.

You can also access dementia care programs and resources by calling the Genesee County Office for the Aging at 585.343.1611.

March 1, 2019 - 12:56pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NASA, news, BOCES, Batavia CTE, batavia, Mount Morris, food, Culinary Arts.


Students of the culinary program at Batavia CTE on Thursday presented dishes they created with the goal of cooking up something suitable for astronauts in space to a panel of judges to see if their creations might be worthy of a nationwide competition in Houston later this year.

Six students, three from Batavia and three from Mount Morris, prepared two dishes -- asparagus "fries" from Batavia and berry quinoa salad.

The dishes were scored on presentation, nutritional value and taste. The final dishes will also need to be suitable for freeze-drying to take into space.

Travis Barlow, Kevin Balkota, John Steward, Danielle Rotondo, Patrick Rae, and Darly Pochan.

Nancy Hall from NASA was also on hand to observe and advise during the competition.

There is no winner from yesterday. Both teams will have their scores presented to a panel who will select 10 teams from entries from around the nation to travel to Houston for the final competition.

Students from Batavia were Melissa Voltura, Jose Vanegas and Jason Lowe. Students from Mount Morris were Sam Meyers, Tony Uveino and Mackenzie Wheeler.







March 1, 2019 - 11:46am
posted by Mike Pettinella in Chamber Awards, news, business, batavia, Genesee Lumber.



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Editor's note: The 2018 Genesee County Chamber of Commerce Awards banquet will be held Saturday, March 2, at the Quality Inn & Suites in Batavia.

John Harrower said he recalls a story that his late father, Robert, told him about how Genesee Lumber got started way back in 1928.

“My grandfather, a pioneer in his vision and thinking, shook hands (on the deal) with the former owner of what was Franklin Street Lumber at the time, and he (the seller) said, ‘Good luck, it’s a dying business.’ ”

Today, that “dying business” is alive and well – continuing to serve Genesee County and, in recent years, Erie and Monroe counties – as both a contractor yard and retail outlet.

It’s doing so well, in fact, that it is being honored as the 2018 Business of the Year by the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce and will be recognized as such at the chamber’s 47th annual Awards Ceremony at 5:30 p.m. on March 2 at the Quality Inn & Suites on Park Road in Batavia.

“We are very honored and humbled to receive this award,” Harrower said, speaking for his wife, Leslie; sons, Michael and Eric, who are both in the business, and his employees.

Genesee Lumber was nominated by Batavia John Riter, who praised the Harrowers for their “vision, willingness to bet on the community and commitment to success” as key elements in the company’s ability to expand considerably in recent years.

“Their success has contributed to the community’s success in a variety of ways, not the least of which is an expanded workforce,” Riter wrote in his nomination letter.

John and Leslie purchased the company from Robert in 1994, but John actually worked for his dad as a child before coming on full time after college in 1983. Leslie, an accomplished business person in her own right, came on board in 1987.

Robert Harrower, well-known for his efforts as a Rotarian and on several community boards, passed away last June at the age of 84.

The origins of Genesee Lumber are best captured in John’s words:

“The company was started in 1928 by my grandfather, Harold Harrower, who was a traveling salesman and a lumber dealer. He wanted to own a lumber yard one day, and he called on this place – the old Franklin Street Lumber – and ended up buying it.”

John said the business prospered through the Depression and World War II, and was supported by three big silos, which kept Harold busy during the winter months. “A big source of revenue, and the fuel supply was coal,” he noted.

In time, the coal aspect went away, the silos were removed and the business became known as Genesee Lumber Company Inc.

Robert Harrower worked beside his dad and uncle as a child. In 1963, he bought out his father (who retired) and owned the business until selling it to his son and daughter-in-law 25 years ago.

John Harrower said he sees himself as a combination of the two – a bit of a risk taker like his grandfather and a sense of conservatism, more like his father.

“Yeah, I think I have some of my grandfather in me in that we took a leap of faith about 15 years ago to venture outside of Genesee County,” John said. “We added four or five buildings, and while continuing to be very heavy in the retail business (in Genesee County) we have expanded those avenues into Monroe and, especially Erie County.”

He said the company owns a fleet of a dozen trucks and 10 forklifts, features a large showroom area to “give people a feel of what they could envision for themselves, no matter the size of the project that they have going on.”

The Andersen Windows line has been a key part of the company’s offerings for about 60 years. “They (Andersen) are, if not No. 1, No. 2,” he said.

Genesee Lumber also carries siding, metal roofing, top quality shingles, the Trex decking product, storm doors, windows and more.

“We also do a large amount of interior packages – styles, color, paint grade option or also a stain finish product,” John said, “and a wide array of exterior door options, and patio doors (with a) great selection. It’s quite an expansive line.”

John said Genesee Lumber has several skilled sales and service employees in the areas of kitchen cabinets and countertops – “not our main line, but we can do pre-built or custom cabinetry,” he said.

Much of the expansion has occurred under John and Leslie’s watch.

“We tore down an old building and a house and put up this nearly 10,000-square-foot warehouse – that mostly houses windows and doors,” he said. “We cut lumber, plywood and have a shop for custom painting.”

John said that they take on a lot of lumber by rail, with one railroad car holding more than four tractor-trailer loads.

“Rail helps reduce our costs quite a bit. It reduces the freight tremendously, which we can pass on to our contractor and customer base,” he said, adding that the majority of the lumber comes from Canada or the West Coast.

The Harrower family continues to be active in the community, as both John and Leslie have served on the Genesee Area YMCA board (Leslie is a former president) and as volunteer coaches for a variety of school and youth sports.

Per Riter’s nomination, “John and Leslie have been great ambassadors in that they are always friendly and welcoming to people who are new to the community, including Liz (his wife) and myself.”

John said he embraces what he calls “the hometown spirit.”

“Nothing comes near it,” he said. “We like to see people within the community; we’ve made a lot of friends and have had a tremendous amount of support from the community. And, for that, we’re very grateful.”

March 1, 2019 - 11:42am
posted by Virginia Kropf in Rotary Club of Batavia, business, Chamber Awards, batavia.



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Editor's note: The 2018 Genesee County Chamber of Commerce Awards banquet will be held Saturday, March 2, at the Quality Inn & Suites in Batavia.

As Batavia’s oldest service club prepares to celebrate its 100th anniversary, it will be honored by the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce with the Special Service Recognition of the Year on Saturday.

Rotarian Christopher White stressed the importance of the Rotary Club of Batavia in the community when he nominated it for the Chamber award.

“Founded by local businessmen looking for camaraderie and an opportunity to give back to their community, the Club has made meaningful contributions, not just financial, but of their time, talent and expertise to make Batavia a better place to live,” White wrote.

Rotary’s contributions to the Batavia community include support of Batavia Concert Band, Genesee County Youth Bureau Community Garden, Genesee Cancer Assistance, Crossroads House, Genesee Symphony Orchestra, GO ART!, Fourth of July Picnic in the Park, Genesee/Orleans ARC and United Memorial Medical Center.

And they support local youth in ice hockey, minor league baseball, Boy Scouts, CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate), YMCA Camp Hough and the YMCA Summer Adventure Program. 

The Rotary Scholarship Program provides $18,000 each year to high school students from Batavia, Notre Dame and Genesee Valley Educational Partnership.

Rotary also gives local high school students a chance to spend a year abroad, and has hosted foreign exchange students looking to experience life in the United States and Western New York. Two of these students, one from Australia and the other from Denmark, are in Batavia now and attended a recent meeting to tell of their experiences at Algonquin Provencial Park in Ontario, Canada.

Rotary has also provided youth leadership training to many local high school and college students through Rotary International. And they support the world by continuing to raise funds from club members to support Rotary International in its quest to eradicate polio from the face of the earth.

Batavia Rotary hosts the annual girls’ and boys’ high school basketball tournaments, the annual Father’s Day Fly-in Breakfast at Genesee County Airport, the annual Beerfest and raffle, and the Memorial Day Flags and Flowers Sale.

Not to be forgotten are the Rotary shows which were put on for so many years.

White noted that many of the current 75 Rotary members sit on boards of local organizations and nonprofit agencies, lending their support and knowledge to them. They can be found making an impact outside of the Club itself, he said. Members range in age from 28 to 88 and all believe in the Rotary motto of “Service Above Self.”

Batavia Rotary was founded in 1919 by Batavia businessman Carlton M. Sleight, who had only lived in the city little more than a decade, according to William F. Brown Jr. in his book "Service Above Self: The Story of a Rotary Club."

Sleight had attended a Rotary meeting in Elmira, while living and doing business in Canandaigua, and Brown believes that his visit may have inspired him to form a club in Batavia. On March 13, 1919, Sleight invited 25 business and professional men to meet at the Holland Club with Dr. John H. Ready from the Rochester club to learn how to form a Batavia unit.

The group was so enthused that, two months later, a dinner meeting was held at the Batavia Club to discuss the reports of committees working on bylaws and a constitution. Officers were installed May 26 at the Odd Fellows Temple (the former St. James Episcopal Church on Ellicott Street). More than 200 Rotarians attended from Rochester to Niagara Falls and enjoyed a five-course dinner served by the Eastern Star. 

Batavia became Rotary International’s charter No. 491.

Batavia dentist Joseph Rowbottom is a 50-year member of Batavia Rotary, along with Dave Schwartz and Don Iwanicki.  

Rowbottom first became exposed to Rotary after moving to Corfu. When he was a freshman in dental school, he had a friend whose fiancee’s mother knew a dentist in Corfu who was retiring. That turned out to be Guy Patterson and Rowbottom bought his building. (Guy Patterson's daughter was the famous swimmer Greta Paterson, who swam across Lake Erie in 1955.)

In 1966, the Vietnam War was heating up, and Rowbottom didn’t want to be drafted, so Patterson agreed to hold the building and Rowbottom enlisted. He served two years in the military and after returning home, started attending Rotary meetings with dentist Patterson. 

“I’ve been coming ever since,” Rowbottom said. “I continued to block off time on my schedule from noon to 1:15 p.m. so I could attend Rotary. I’ve always had a lot of fun at Rotary. I also liked the Buffalo Club, but they were so formal.”

Rowbottom said his friends challenged him in the beginning to propose that women be allowed to join Rotary. At the time, the Batavia Jaycees were thrown out of the organization for accepting a female member. He proposed Rotary welcome in Terry Carauna, the dean of Business at Genesee Community College.

“They didn’t accept her and I almost got thrown out of Rotary,” Rowbottom said. “Today, we would be in a world of hurt without women. This club could not function as it does without women.”

One of the newer, younger members is Pam Sivret, who joined in 2017. Her sister, Teri Yasses has been a member since 1994 and Sivret has helped her with the fly-in breakfasts and Rotary shows. 

When Yasses said Sivret should join, she did.

“I love the friendship and how we are all very like-minded,” Sivret said. 

She was the first winner of a Rotary Youth Leadership Award to become a Rotary member. She won the award in 1990 while a student at GCC.

Lori Aratari was working for Triple AAA when she joined Rotary. 

“They encouraged us to be part of our community and get involved,” Aratari said. “I explored the service clubs locally and Rotary stood out.”

She has chaired fundraisers and is in her second term on the board.

“I’ve made amazing friends through Rotary and my husband enjoys participating in Rotary events,” Aratari said.

February 28, 2019 - 7:55pm
posted by Billie Owens in accidents, batavia, news.

A two-vehicle accident is reported at West Main Street Road (Route 5) and Hartshorn Road, Town of Batavia. One vehicle rolled over and there is entrapment. East Pembroke Fire Department is responding along with Mercy medics.

UPDATED 7:56 p.m.: A second Mercy rig is called to the scene.

February 28, 2019 - 5:52pm
posted by Billie Owens in frie, news, batavia.

Smoke is reportedly coming from a residence at 210 S. Main St. in the City of Batavia. The location is between Meadowcrest Drive and River Street. City fire is responding.

February 27, 2019 - 5:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Pok-A-Dot, batavia.
February 27, 2019 - 2:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Stafford.

Michael L. Jackson, 38, no address provided, was charged at 10:45 a.m. on Dec. 3 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the second degree and unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle. He was arrested at or near the JCPenney store in Batavia City Centre, arraigned in Batavia City Court and released on his own recognizance. He was to appear in city court at 9 a.m. on Jan. 10 to answer the charge. Then at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 18, he was arrested at the Sav-A-Lot grocery store on Ellicott Street in Batavia and charged with petit larceny. He was also to appear in city court at 9 a.m. on Jan. 10 to answer the second charge. When he failed to appear at the appointed time in city court to answer the charges, an arrest warrant(s) was issued for him. He was subsequently arrested on the warrant(s) by the Genesee County Sheriff's Office and turned over to Batavia police. After his arraignment at 4:47 p.m. on Feb. 25, he was jailed in lieu of an unspecified amount of bail and is due in city court Thursday (Feb. 28). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller, assisted by Officer Felicia DeGroot.

Othello Garwo, 19, of Halford Street, Rochester, is charged with: operating a motor vehicle while registration suspended; unlawful possession of marijuana; unlicensed operator; and driver's view obstructed. At 2:26 a.m. on Feb. 26, Sheriff's deputies conducted a traffic stop on Clinton Street Road in Stafford (Route 33) and Garwo was arrested on the charges. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Stafford Town Court on March 28. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Erik Andre, assisted by Deputy Andrew Mullen.

February 27, 2019 - 12:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, notify.
       Daryl Leach

A robbery at the Speedway at Oak and Main in Batavia was reported at about 9:55 p.m., Tuesday.

Det. Eric Hill said Daryl Leach, 37, of State Street, Batavia, has been identified as the suspect and taken into custody.

Leach, who is currently on parole, made off with an undisclosed amount of cash.

The suspect was found at a location on Swamp Road and taken into custody with the assistance of NYS Parole and the Sheriff's Office.

It's believed Leach acted alone.

Nobody was hurt in the robbery.

In October 2003, Leach was sent to prison by a judge in Livingston County on a 12- to 15-year sentence on convictions for grand larceny, 4th, attempted robbery, 1st, attempted assault, 1st, and robbery, 3rd. He was released from prison in July with parole lasting into 2023. He also had an attempted robbery conviction in 1999.


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