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March 31, 2020 - 2:45pm

Greg Kinal, Pembroke Teachers Association president, has put out a letter to the Pembroke school community calling for a "Thinking of You" drive-by parade along a route now being planned. Participants are to assemble in the Pembroke High School parking lot at 12:30 p.m. Friday, April 3.

Here's the letter:

Dear Pembroke School Community:

As we continue with this terrible event in our lives, I thought it would be nice to take a break, have some fun, boost some spirits, and come together (separately) as a school community and tell this great school district how much they mean to us.

Therefore, the PTF would like to invite everyone to join us in a “WE’RE THINKING OF YOU” parade this Friday, April 3.

We will meet at 12:30 p.m. at the High School parking lot to get organized. The PTF will have washable markers for you to write on your back windows or you can make your own signs. At 1:00 we begin with Officer Reeves leading the way with lights blazing. The route will be established by Donna Hackett and we are planning on arriving back at school around 3:00.

The PTF has invited the SRP (School-Related Professionals) union to join us and I have been told that a number of empty buses will be in our parade. I have been informed that the fire companies will be represented. We would also consider it an honor to have our administrators with us as well as the whole school community.

Please keep in mind that:

  • At all times we must keep the 6 foot distance between us.
  • Everyone will be in their own cars, so invite any family member to join you. 
  • Please use the bathroom prior to coming to school, as entering the building would be counterproductive to distancing.
  • If you have masks, wear them.
  • Patrick will speak to all of us in the parking lot prior to leaving so we know what his plan is to keep us all together.
  • We will announcing this event on Facebook, Twitter and other venues so families are aware of the parade.

PTF members who plan on attending please email your building reps who will then pass the numbers along to me. SRP’s please contact Cheryl who will also pass the number to me. Administration and all others please make your intentions known by emailing me. If we could all do this by Thursday, April 2, that would be appreciated and once Patrick has the number he will have ample time to assess his traffic plan. 

On a personal note, my wife, who has been really Roswell (-bound) and housebound for months will be joining us.

With great respect to you and I hope to see everyone on Friday.

Questions? Email me.


[email protected]

March 28, 2020 - 12:14pm

Supplies are dwindling for basic food items stocked at the Corfu Presbyterian Church food pantry, located at 63 Alleghany Road, which is operated in partnership with St. Maximilian Kolbe Roman Catholic Church.

"We have a lot of elderly people, who used to go out to restaurants, relying on us," said pantry coodinator Paula Trapani.

If you can help, they are especially in need of:

  • Canned fruit and vegetables
  • SOUP, noodle cups, Top Ramen
  • Canned tuna
  • Canned chicken
  • Pasta
  • Pasta sauces
  • Canned tomato products, most assuredly ketchup
  • Peanut butter
  • Jelly and jam
  • Canned juice
  • Cereal and shelf-stable milk
  • Pancake mix and syrup

Trapani said meal items that can be prepared quickly are needed, adding that cake mix and canned frosting, or brownie and muffin mix would be nice treats, too.

The pantry is also running low on basic hygiene supplies and toiletries like soap and shampoo.

To help families pass the time during the COVID-19 pandemic, the pantry is also making room to stockpile puzzles, board games, hidden word search booklets and the like.

There will be someone at the church from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays. Please leave items on the bench outside and someone will retrieve them.

If anyone has questions or needs to drop off items at another time, please contact Paula Trapani at (716) 423-1907.

One thing they do not need is frozen French fries.

"Our freezer is stuffed with bags of frozen French fries from a truck that caught fire last week, I believe on Route 5, and they were able to salvage quite a lot of French fries -- I'm not kidding," Trapani said, adding that the freezer at the St. Kolbe's also chock full of them.

So don't forget the ketchup, folks...

UPDATED at 1:46 a.m. Sunday, March 29: Forgot to include crackers; all kinds of crackers.

March 23, 2020 - 11:43am

Press release:

During this COVID-19 pandemic, Rochester Regional Health remains focused on the health of our community and continuing to deliver safe and accessible care for individuals who need it. Effective today, March 23, we are temporarily redirecting all lab draw services to the Rochester Regional Health Laboratory located at:

  • Rochester Regional Health Laboratory City Center, 106 Main St., Suite 47B, Batavia

Our Batavia (16 Bank St.), Le Roy (3 Tountas Ave.), and Pembroke (860 Main St.) laboratory service centers are closed until further notice. We appreciate your understanding.

March 19, 2020 - 5:52pm

Press release:

COVID-19 Response Update – March 19, 2020

In response to the March 14, 2020 Declaration of a State of Emergency by the Genesee County Department of Health (DOH) and the DOH recommendation that all schools close immediately and until further notice; in response to guidance documents received from the NYS Education Department (NYSED); and in response to the Governor’s Executive Orders No. 202.4 and NO. 202.5; the Pembroke Central School District closed for students starting on March 15, 2020 and engaged its employees in necessary planning.

All Pembroke students K-12 were provided hard copy learning materials, Chromebooks, and access to online learning platforms. Families enrolled in the Free and Reduced Meals program, as well as additional families experiencing financial hardship while school is closed, have been provided the opportunity to receive free breakfasts and lunches to cover Monday through Friday.

The District is doing its due diligence to identify and secure childcare services for Pembroke parents who work in the health care field.

The Superintendent and Board of Education expresses heartfelt gratitude to the following:

  • To Students: Thank you for your resiliency and your flexibility.
  • To Parents: Thank you for your cooperation and trust. Thank you to those of you who offered to help however you could.

  • To Support Staff: Thank you for your willingness to jump right in to help the teachers and administration so many ways.

  • To Teachers and other PTF members: Thank you for preparing meaningful learning activities in short order and setting up our students for continued success.

  • To Cafeteria Staff: Thank you for meeting essential needs for those most in need through your food service.

  • To the Transportation Department: Thank you for delivery learning materials and being ready to roll when called upon.

  • To Administration, District Office Staff, Union Representatives and our SRO: Thank you for your leadership and the hours you invested this past weekend and each night after school hours.

  • To Kevin MacDonald and the Genesee Valley Superintendents: Thank you for your collaboration and guidance. We know the people in your organizations are responding the same way as ours.

    Despite all the current challenges, we will get through this together. All Pembroke updates are posted on the District website.

March 18, 2020 - 1:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke, pembroke schools, news, video, live stream, covid-19, coronavirus.
Video Sponsor

This afternoon we're talking with Pembroke's school superintendent, Matthew E. Calderon.  The stream is also available on YouTube.

March 11, 2020 - 5:21pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke, pembroke hs, sports, basketball.


Without Kekari Moss on the court, Serene Calderon stepped up to carry the offensive load for Pembroke on Tuesday in the Class C consolidation game against Keshequa.

Calderon scored 27 points and had 11 rebounds along with three steals to lead the Dragons to a 48-43 victory.

Isabel Breeden and Emily Peters each scored eight points. Casey Wurtz had nine rebounds.

Pembroke will try and snag the Far West Championship -- a prerequisite to moving onto the state tournament -- at 3 p.m. Saturday at Rush-Henrietta High School.

In Tuesday's other big game, Elba beat Pavilion 50-47 in the Class D consolidation game. We'll have a story and video in a separate post later (hopefully) today.

Photos by Philip Casper.


Paige McKerrow (11) driving for the basket, scoring six points for Keshequa in the first quarter.


Emily Weaver (12) looking to pass as Emily Peters (32) blocks the way.


Casey Wurtz (13), left, Serene Calderon (2), right, eliminate any passing lanes for Faith Wood (32).



Allie Schwerthoffer (11 Pembroke) driving past Paige McKerrow (11 Keshequa). 


Casey Wurtz (13) going for a layup


MacKenna Johnson shooting a free throw late in the game.


March 6, 2020 - 4:19pm

Press release:

Projects to revitalize an important downtown corridor in Batavia and to add 22 megawatts of community solar capacity in Genesee County received approval from the Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) Board of Directors at the agency’s March 5 board meeting.

The seven projects approved for assistance have pledged more than $45 million of capital investments.

The Ellicott Station project, a $22 million mixed-use brownfield redevelopment project in Downtown Batavia, plans to construct 55 workforce apartments as part of an adaptive reuse of a former manufacturing facility on a brownfield site that would transform a major gateway to the city, and has applied for support from the New York State Office of Community Renewal.

Ellicott Place is a $3.1 million redevelopment of 45-47 Ellicott St. by V.J. Gautieri Constructors. The project includes the construction of 10 second-floor apartments at the existing facility, along with the development of first-floor storefronts and building-wide façade improvements.

Both projects support Genesee County’s EDGE economic development strategy for housing to support the growth of local businesses and were recognized as strategic projects in the Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) announced by Governor Cuomo in 2018.

Five community solar projects proposed by Borrego Solar include capital investments of approximately $21.6 million, and over 15 years are projected to produce more than $2 million to local taxing jurisdictions, including the Elba, Pembroke, and Akron school districts. Each project would also contribute $25,000 toward a community benefit agreement to support STEM education and economic development initiatives.

Borrego’s projects will be located at 3104 W. Main Street Road, 3232 W. Main Street Road and 5230 Batavia-Stafford Townline Road in the Town of Batavia and at 241 Knapp Road East and 241 Knapp Road West in the Town of Pembroke.

March 6, 2020 - 3:46pm

Submitted photo and press release:

Casey Felski is a determined young person. This senior from Pembroke High School attends the Electro-Mechanical Trades Program at the Batavia Career and Technical Education Center.

Last school year, she attended the Building Trades Program at the Batavia CTE Center. Rich Monroe is Casey’s Electro-Mechanical Trades instructor in the program. He describes her as a leader in the classroom and on the worksite.

“From Casey’s first day of school, I could see that hands-on learning is her forte," Monroe said. "I could tell that she would excel in whatever she attempted to do.  My job as her instructor was to spark her interest."

Each year the Building Trades and Electro-Mechanical Trades Programs build a house on-site for a home owner. All the building materials costs, as well as the construction of the home’s foundation, are paid by the home owner but the labor to construct the home is free.

This house project provides students with real-world on the job experiences including leadership roles.  

As a senior, Casey does just that, she works with the incoming juniors to orient them to working at the house site, leading group projects and running jobs as assigned by Monroe.

Besides being determined, Casey can also be described as hardworking and dedicated. She is an active volunteer firefighter with Corfu Rescue Hook and Ladder Company and she also serves as an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). She runs track at Pembroke High School and works part time at a grocery store in Akron. 

Casey’s actions and work ethic in and out of the classroom have proven successful. She recently was awarded a School-to-Work scholarship from the Electrical Association of Western New York (EAWNY).

Founded in 1924, this organization’s mission is to educate about the safe and efficient use of electricity and technology, and promote the electrical industry. Each year, the EAWNY awards School-to-Work Scholarships to individuals who pursue a career in the electric industry and participate in a training program to be used for the purchase of tools.

After graduation in June, Casey’s goal is to gain acceptance into the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 41 Apprenticeship Program. Monroe said the he has no doubt that Casey will get accepted.

Photo, from left: Instructor Rich Monroe, senior Casey Felski, and Catherine Bennett, Batavia CTE Center assistant principal.

March 5, 2020 - 12:56pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke, sports, basketball, video.
Video Sponsor

Pembroke led from start to finish in their Section V Class C1 semifinal game Wednesday night at Honeoye Falls-Lima against Red Jacket.

But that doesn't mean the win came easy.

"They were a lot faster, a lot quicker than we thought they were," said Head Coach Ron Funke. "It gave us a little trouble, especially with their press, because we tried to hurry the ball in. Once we took our time in and got the ball into the middle of the floor, we were OK. But they don't give up. They don't quit."

The final score was 53-35.

Dekari Moss scored 23 points, had seven rebounds and four steals.

"I thought Dekari dominated on both ends of the court," Funke said. "She rebounded well and she owned the middle. They were giving us a lot of gaps with their zone defense; Dakari is so quick and athletic that she took advantage of that."

Emily Peters scored 14 points, including a trio of three-pointers that helped seal Red Jacket's fate in the second half.

"When she gets on a roll, I mean, she's a very streaky shooter and she started off slow today but when she gets hot, you just keep feeding her," Funke said. "She came up big today especially toward the end of the third quarter."

Point guard Serene Calderon scored 12 points and had six assists, six rebounds, and three steals.

"She usually makes good decisions," Funke said. "We want the ball in her hands. She showed she'll get the ball to the people that we need to get the ball to. She runs the offense and she's in a great defensive player."

Casey Wurtz scored two points, had two assists, seven rebounds, and three blocked shots. Mackenna Johnson scored two points, had three assists, four rebounds, and three steals.

Next up, the Dragons will try to defend their 2019 Section V crown against Letchworth at 5 p.m., at Gates Chili.

Letchworth qualified for the finals by beating Byron-Bergen 58-55 in a game that went down to the closing seconds. 

Photos from the Byron-Bergen game below by Tammy Fuller.





February 29, 2020 - 10:24pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, basketball, pembroke.
Video Sponsor

Pembroke's 21st win on the season came in its second game of sectional play today when the Lady Dragons beat Warsaw 47-28.

The Dragons dominated on defense and were led by DeKari Moss on offense, who scored 19 points. 

Serene Calderon scored 11 and Emily Peters scored nine, all on three-point shots.

For Warsaw, Ceanne Ellsworth scored 15 points.

In Class C1, the 21-1 Dragons next play Red Jacket (17-5) at 7:45 p.m., Wednesday, March 4, at a location to be determined.

The number-two seed in the bracket, Byron-Bergen (18-4), beat East Rochester tonight and next plays Letchworth (8-14) at 6 p.m., March 4, at a location to be determined, setting up a possible cross-county class of C1 rivals.

February 27, 2020 - 11:36am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Scholastic Bowl, batavia, pembroke, news.


In Wednesday's Scholastic Bowl competition, Batavia scored 340 points in the second match to beat Notre Dame, 170, and Alexander, 160.

In the first match, Pembroke beat Le Roy and Alden 240 to 230 and 170.


February 24, 2020 - 3:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, notify, batavia, pembroke.

David James LeRoy, 27, of Gabbey Road, Pembroke, is charged with aggravated harassment in the second degree and falsely reporting in the third degree. At 3:57 p.m. on Feb. 23, LeRoy was arrested after allegedly making several phone calls to the Genesee County Emergency Dispatch Center for no legitimate purpose, and making false reports. He was released on appearance tickets and is due in Pembroke Town Court on March 3. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputy David Moore.

Three Buffalo residents are charged with crimes following a reported of an alleged larceny from Target in Towne Center at Batavia mall on Feb. 23. They reportedly left the scene and were located on the Thruway in Pembroke. Arrested at 5:25 p.m. Sunday were: Ashley M. Drexinger, 27, of Kensington Avenue, who is charged with third-degree grand larceny – a Class D felony, and fifth-degree conspiracy – a Class A misdemeanor. Ericka K. McBride, 30, of Janet Avenue, is charged with fifth-degree conspiracy and unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle. Kahel S. Suttles, 23, of Dodge Street, is charged with third-degree grand larceny, and unlawful possession of marijuana. All were released on appearance tickets and are due in Town of Batavia on March 5. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Deputy David Moore.

Harry Thomas Gibson, 55, of Watson Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. On Feb. 21 at 6:25 p.m. Gibson was arrested for petit larceny following a complaint of a shoplifter at Kohl’s department store. He allegedly stole three bottles of cologne. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia Town Court on March 5. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff’s Deputy Mathew Clor.

February 13, 2020 - 9:28am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Scholastic Bowl, news, pembroke.


Pembroke scored 300 points in Wednesday's second match of the Scholastic Bowl at Genesee Community College to beat out Pavilion, 140 points, and Oakfield-Alabama, 130.

Alden won the first match, beating Akron and Elba, 340 to 220 to 70.

February 12, 2020 - 12:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, pembroke, oakfield-alabama, basketball, video.
Video Sponsor

Pembroke's young team, sparked by freshman Cayden Pfalzer, put up a good fight against Oakfield-Alabama at home Tuesday night, forcing the game to overtime before falling to the Hornets 66-57.

Pfalzer hit four three-point shots on his way to 16 points for the game.

For O-A, Gaige Armbrewster scored 17 points, Kaden Cusmano, 16, Travis Wiedrich, 15, and Joey Burdick, 11.

Pembroke's Garrett Totten scored 11 points, Adam Dulski, 11, and Noah Godzala, nine.

The Hornets are 14-4 on the season, Pembroke 7-10.

Also in boys basketball on Wednesday:

  • Alexander beat Attica, 59-50;
  • Notre Dame racked up 110 points to beat C.G. Finney, which scored 77 points;
  • Bergen beat Holley 71-42;
  • Le Roy beat Bath 67-47. For Le Roy, Cody Lytle scored 12 points and had 10 rebounds. Andrew Loftus 13 points, and Ethan Beswick, 12 points;
  • Elba beat Lyndonville 81-75;
  • Batavia beat Newark 48-47.

Photos from Le Roy's game by Caitlin Napper (This is a correction)



January 29, 2020 - 10:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, pembroke, east pembroke, notify.

A woman who was driving an SUV struck head-on on Route 5 in East Pembroke yesterday morning has died, according to the Genesee County Sheriff's Office.

Patricia L. Dzienciol, 50, of Akron, succumbed to her injuries at the Erie County Medical Center.

Dzienciol was driving a 2015 Nissan Rogue westbound in the area of 2700 Main Road at 7:14 a.m. when 1997 Mercury sedan crossed over from the eastbound lane and struck her vehicle. The Rogue traveled off the north shoulder and overturned in a roadside ditch.

The driver of the Mercury, Kathleen Swanekamp, 84, of Roswell Avenue, Tonawanda, was cited for allegedly driving at a speed that was not safe nor prudent and for failure to stay in the right lane.

At the time of the accident, snow was falling and roadways were wet and slushy. East Pembroke Chief Don Newton said the conditions made it difficult for volunteers to respond to the scene both quickly and cautiously.  

UPDATE: Audio on the video (finally) fixed.

January 28, 2020 - 5:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, video, pembroke, notify.
Video Sponsor

One of the drivers involved in a serious injury accident at 7:14 a.m. on Route 5 in East Pembroke was cited for two alleged traffic violations following an investigation into the collision.

Kathleen A. Swanekamp, 84, of Roswell Avenue, Tonawanda, was cited for allegedly driving faster than was safe or prudent for the conditions and for failure to stay in the right lane of traffic.

According to the accident report prepared by Deputy Nicholas Chamoun, Swanekemp was eastbound on Main Road east of Barrett Road when her 1997 Mercury sedan crossed into the westbound lane.

The car collided head-on with a 2015 Nissan SUV driven by Patricia Dzienciol, 50, of Golden Pond Estates, Akron. Dzienciol's vehicle overturned in a ditch on the north shoulder and East Pembroke Chief Don Newton said it was a lengthy process to extricate her from the vehicle.

Swanekamp had two passengers: William J. Danek, 26, and Daniel Cordner, 42. A passenger in the rear seat of Swanekamp's sedan also required extrication.

All four patients were taken to the trauma center at ECMC.

CORRECTION: Earlier we listed the registered owner of the SUV, not the driver. The driver was Patricia Dzienciol.

UPDATE: Audio corrected on the video.

January 25, 2020 - 12:58pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, pembroke, batavia.

Daniel Jon Lewis, 23, of Genesee Street, Lima, is charged with fourth-degree grand larceny. Lewis was arrested Jan. 23. He is accused of stealing a vehicle from the 5000 block of Clinton Street Road in Batavia at 8:39 a.m. on Jan. 3. He was issued an appearance ticket for Feb. 6 in Town of Batavia Court, at which time he will be arraigned. The case was investigated by Genesee County Sheriff's Investigator Chad Minuto.

Jennifer Ann Clarke, 22, of Beckwith Drive, Pembroke, is charged with stalking in the fourth degree and second-degree aggravated harassment. She was arrested Jan. 23. She is accused of sending several text messages and making several phone calls to an individual after being told to stop contacting that person. Clarke was arraigned in Pembroke Town Court on Jan. 23 and then was released under supervision of Genesee Justice. Clarke is due in Pembroke Town Court again on Feb. 4. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Deputy Erik Andre.

January 23, 2020 - 11:23am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Scholastic Bowl, pembroke, Notre Dame, news.


In the Scholastic Bowl on Wednesday night, Notre Dame won the first match with a score of 270.

Alden scored 200 and Oakfield 160.

In the second match, Pembroke scored 230 points, edging out Attica with 210. Elba came in third with 90 points.

Submitted photos and information.

January 22, 2020 - 3:00pm

Click here for 1142 Mcalpine Road, Alabama. Great opportunity to get awesome land, prime for great hunting and tons of privacy. A great place to live or rent out and build your dream home while you do it! This property is secluded, yet minutes from Thruway to head to work, or 10 minutes to shopping in Batavia. Location is key! This 1987 manufactured home is in great condition and IS FINANCEABLE! Hurricane ties per banking regulations already in place! There is a 20x24 barn/outbuilding with concrete floors, electric and loft for more storage for all the hunting gear and extra toys! The land is simply peaceful and beautiful and does have some existing paths in place-perfect wooded backdrop for quiet country living at its finest!

Click here for 66 West Main Street, Pembroke. Well maintained 3 bedroom 2 full bath home in one of the nicest 55+ communities around! Large room sizes, bright and airy with a lot more storage than you would imagine. What you will find in this 1996 double wide home-almost 1500 sq ft! Home has laundry/mudroom, large eat in style kitchen, extra roomy living/formal dining area with super cute office space with pretty French doors. Could be third bedroom or guest room if needed! Master bedroom with bath is large but cozy! Situated on an extra large corner lot with back patio area for sitting out! Bonus is the two car attached heated garage! Who said downsizing meant giving things up? Easy to see! Call Lynn Bezon at 344-home and list with us today!

January 17, 2020 - 8:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke, Shooting for a Cure, video.
Video Sponsor

Last night, the Lady Dragons and the Pembroke community raised $32,468.20 for research at Roswell Cancer Institute. The total the community has raised now exceeds $152,000.

In the basketball game, Pembroke beat Oakfield-Alabama 50-47 to move to 11-1 on the season.

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