Local Matters

Community Sponsors


July 16, 2019 - 10:40am


Press release (along with submitted photos): 

It was a first for golfers in Arc of Genesee Orleans Tournament Monday – a scramble format! After 42 years of stroke play, the planning committee switched things up this year, to rave reviews.

“We wanted to appeal to golfers of every skill level,” Arc’s Sandy Konfederath said, “and also speed up play.” 

The tournament is the longest-running charity event at the local private course and also features tennis and bocce divisions.

“Something for everyone,” Konfederath said.  This year the tournament attracted 98 golfers, 37 bocce players and 14 playing tennis.

In golf play, women’s team winners with a 63 were Heather Burbules, Maria Woodward, Francesca Fuller and Tina Lambert. The mixed team of Katie Berger, John Houseknecht, Katie Houseknecht and Buddy Houseknecht recorded a tally of 62 and the team of Steve Harrison, Steve Pies Bruce Briggs and Mat Redmond captured the men’s title with a 61.

This year’s hole-in-one prize on 8 was a 2019 Jeep Compass Latitude 4X4, courtesy of Castilone Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram. Unfortunately, no one shot an ace to drive away with the vehicle.

In other on the course contests, Scott Fauth and Francesca Fuller won the longest drive on 7 and 15. In the closest-to-the-pin contests, Tina Lambert won a golf bag, courtesy of C.H. Wright on 8 (4’8”); John Houseknecht earned first prize on 12 (1’11”) with Paul Saskowski second (10’6”) and Karen Percassi third (11’). Kevin Wehner won a Schwinn bicycle, donated by Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle in the top prize on 14 (6’2”).  

In bocce, the top team -- from ESL Credit Union -- was Tim Miller, Jenna Holota, Mary Blevins and Collin Hawes, who also won the Golden Pallino contest.

On the tennis courts, first-place team honors went to James Bellamy and Diane Bonarigo; Gary May earned top score and second-place team went to Augusts Rolfe and Calvin Klemmer.

Gold sponsors were Turnbull Heating & Air-Conditioning, Crickler Vending, MTE Turf Equipment Solutions, Relph Benefit Advisors, Toshiba and Tompkins Bank of Castile/Insurance Agencies/Financial Advisors.

Silver sponsors were: Western New York Concrete, The Batavia Daily News, Graham Corporation, The Bonadio Group, Alan & Cathy Barcomb, Hoffman, Hanafin & Associates, In Memory of Ralph Houseknecht Sr., Castilone Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, Parkview Health Services, Genesee Valley Penny Saver and The Insurance Center.

Also supporting the event were seven golf sponsors, three tennis sponsors, four bocce sponsors, three cart sponsors, two entertainment sponsors and eight Friend of Arc sponsors.

Door prizes, silent auction and basket raffle items were donated by dozens of area businesses and community members. The winner of the $1,000 cash drawing was Bruce Briggs with ticket number 04201.

Funds raised benefit programs and services for people with disabilities served by Arc of Genesee Orleans. The tournament is named in memory of Danny Lullo, a local businessman who came up with the idea to hold a tournament to benefit Arc programs and services for people with disabilities in our community.

Ed Carney is the event chairman. Deb Fischer chairs bocce and Peggy Lamb chairs tennis.





July 11, 2019 - 4:33pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, accidents, Stafford.

A two-car collision with injuries is reported at the intersection of Clinton Street Road and Westbrook Road, Stafford. Stafford Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding.

July 11, 2019 - 2:51pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, notify, batavia, bergen, Stafford, Le Roy.

Salvatore M. Tornabene, 26, of Ross Street, Batavia, (inset photo right) is charged with third-degree assault. He was arrested following a domestic incident on Ross Street at 11:30 p.m. on July 1. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and jailed without bail. Tornabene was due back in city court July 8. 

Salvatore M. Tornabene, 26, of Ross Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree, and second-degree menacing. At 11:05 p.m. on July 6, Batavia police responded to Ross Street for a report of subjects fighting, possibly with weapons. He was arrested after he allegedly threatened a woman with an imitation pistol. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and jailed without bail. Tornabene was due back in city court July 8. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Mitchell Cowen.

Kyle Allan Hawley, 29, of South Lake Avenue, Bergen, is charged with: two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree; possession of a hypodermic instrument; and criminal use of drug paraphernalia in the second degree. At 8:10 a.m. on July 10, the GC Emergency Dispatch Center received a report of a larceny that just occurred at a business on West Main Street in the City of Batavia. The suspect vehicle was located entering the Thruway at the Exit 48 interchange. Hawley was identified as a passenger in the vehicle. Following a search of the vehicle, and after allegedly observing stolen property in plain view, Hawley was found to allegedly possession two different kinds of controlled substances and drug paraphernalia. He was arrested, arraigned in Batavia Town Court and processed, then released on appearance tickets. He is due back in town court on July 25. The investigation was assisted by members of the NYS Troopers and City of Batavia Police Department. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Ryan DeLong.

Mitchell Edward Bryan, 27, East Bethany -- Le Roy Road, Stafford, is charged with: aggravated driving while intoxicated; DWI; driving left of pavement markings; moving from unsafely; and failure to keep right. At 12:12 a.m. on July 11, the Genesee County Sheriff's Office investigated a one-car accident on Bernd Road in the Town of Le Roy. The driver and sole occupant, Bryan, was arrested on the charges listed. He was driving northbound on Bernd Road when he cross over into the southbound lane and continued off the west shoulder, striking a tree. Further investigation allegedly revealed he had a BAC of .18 percent or higher. He was released on an appearance ticket and is due in the Town of Le Roy Court on Aug. 6. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy David Moore.

David M. Raines, 37, of Bank Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. He was arrested at 7 p.m. on July 5 after an incident on Bank Street. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court on July 16 to answer the charge. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Quider, assisted by Officer Peter Post.

July 9, 2019 - 2:54pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, Stafford, GOW opioid task force, pain management.

The speakers for the upcoming GOW Opioid Task Force Quarterly Meeting are announced.

They are:

  • Dr. Matthew Fernaays, MD, PhD, Pembroke Family Medicine/GCASA will be discussing what pain is and how opioids work
  • Patrick Privatera, MS, PT, ATC, president of Village Physical Therapy & Village Fitness will present on non-opioid alternatives to pain management with a focus on non-surgical approaches
  • Dr. Hemant Kalia, MD, MPH, UMMC Pain Clinic/Rochester Regional Health will share his expertise on non-opioid alternatives to pain management with a focus on surgical and medical approaches.

The meeting will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday July 24th, at the Stafford Fire Hall. It is located at 6153 Main St. in Stafford.

Please join us as the following local professionals share their knowledge and expertise on non-opioid alternatives to pain management:

Speakers will begin promptly at 10 a.m. and conclude remarks by 11:30 a.m.

To register for this event please visit our website at: www.gowopioidtaskforce.org and click the link right on our homepage.  

If you are a community agency and have a local event you wish to share with Task Force members please email Allison Parry-Gurak at:

[email protected]

July 1, 2019 - 4:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in Milestones, batavia, corfu, Stafford.

The following students have been selected for inclusion on the dean's list for academic achievement during the Spring 2019 semester at St. Lawrence University.

  • Quinn D. Audsley, of Corfu. Audsley is a member of the Class of 2020 and is majoring in Sociology. Audsley attended Pembroke Central School.
  • Margaret M. Graney, of Stafford. Graney is a member of the Class of 2022. Graney attended Byron-Bergen High School.
  • John W. Sutherland, of Batavia. Sutherland is a member of the Class of 2020 and is majoring in Mathematics. Sutherland attended Notre Dame High School.

To be eligible for the dean's list, a student must have completed at least four courses and have an academic average of 3.6 based on a 4.0 scale for the semester.

About St. Lawrence University

Founded in 1856, St. Lawrence University is a private, independent liberal arts institution of about 2,500 students located in Canton. The educational opportunities at St. Lawrence inspire students and prepare them to be critical and creative thinkers, to find a compass for their lives and careers, and to pursue knowledge and understanding for the benefit of themselves, humanity and the planet. Through its focus on active engagement with ideas in and beyond the classroom, a St. Lawrence education leads students to make connections that transform lives and communities, from the local to the global. Visit www.stlawu.edu.

July 1, 2019 - 2:52pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, Stafford, notify.


A truck driver with 40,000 pounds in beets in his trailer thought he could make it under a railroad overpass on Griswold Road at 8:30 this morning.

According to Deputy Chris Erion, the driver was following GPS but the address he was going to was the billing address on the manifest, not the shipping address, which is on Transit Road.

Griswold was closed for several hours as a result of the accident.

UPDATE 6:06 p.m.: Griswold Road has reopened.

(Initial Report)





July 1, 2019 - 8:33am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, Stafford.

A truck reportedly tried to go under the railroad bridge in the area of 5757 Griswold Road, Stafford, struck the bridge, and is now stuck.

Law enforcement is on scene.

June 28, 2019 - 2:59pm
posted by Billie Owens in accident, Stafford, news.

A two-vehicle collision with injuries, and blocking traffic, is reported in Stafford at 9710 Transit Road.

The location is between East Bethany - Le Roy Road and Wescott Road. Stafford and Bethany fire departments are responding, along with Mercy medics and law enforcement.

UPDATE 3:06 p.m.: The roadway is completely blocked. One patient has minor injuries and needs to be evaluated by medics. One vehicle is disabled and a tow is called.

UPDATE 3:12 p.m.: Northbound traffic on Transit Road will be stopped at East Bethany - Le Roy Road. One patient refused medical aid.

UPDATE 3:16 p.m.: Dan's Towing is sending two tows to the scene.

June 24, 2019 - 1:31pm
posted by Billie Owens in Stafford, Announcements, GOW opioid task force.

The quarterly meeting of the GOW Opioid Task Force will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 24in the Stafford Fire Hall, located at 6153 Main Street in Stafford.

The focus will be "Non-opioid Alterntatives to Pain Management." The public is invited to attend this free event.

Come and join us for a discussion about this topic and get a first look at our new Post-Narcan Administration video.

We will also be having local professionals speak and there will be numerous vendors to share their expertise.

For more information and to register, visit:   gowopioidtaskforce.org

The task force is supported by a grant from the Greater Rochester Health Foundation.

June 23, 2019 - 12:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Stafford, Bethany.

Crystal Lynn Kiebzak, 37, of Main Street, Wyoming, is charged with second-degree reckless endangerment. On June 22 at a campground on Francis Road in Bethany, Kiebzak was arrested at 7:35 p.m. following the investigation of a child who was resuscitated after drowning in a pool. She was arraigned in Bethany Town Court and issued an appearance ticket for 7 p.m. July 16 in Bethany Town Court. The case was investigated by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Joshua Brabon, assisted by Deputy Kyle Krzemien.

David George Morgan, 65, of Roanoke Road, Stafford, is charged with second-degree menacing. He was arrested at 6:56  p.m. on June 20 on Roanoke Road in Stafford. It is alleged that he intentionally placed an individual in reasonable fear of physical injury, serious physical injury or death by displaying a dangerous instrument -- a screwdriver. He was arraigned in Stafford Town Court and released under supervision. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Travis DeMuth, assisted by Sgt. Andrew Hale.

Duane Kenneth Miller, 54, of Linwood Avenue, Warsaw, is charged with illegal use of toxic vapors. Following an investigation into a subject allegedly huffing in the Walmart parking lot in Batavia, Miller was arrested at 12:45 p.m. on June 21. He was released on an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia Town Court on July 8. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Kevin Forsyth, assisted by Deputy Ryan Young.

June 22, 2019 - 7:13am
posted by Billie Owens in news, Stafford, accidents.

A one-vehicle rollover accident is reported at 6412 East Bethany -- Le Roy Road. The vehicle landed in a ditch and is on fire. Stafford Fire Department, deputies and Mercy medics are responding.

UPDATE 7:15 a.m.: The driver is out of a pickup truck that is well off the roadway, according to a first responder on scene. He is walking around; minor injuries. Smoke is coming from the pickup.

UPDATE 7:24 a.m.: A deputy says the truck is on its side, 50 feet off the roadway, down a 10-foot embankment. A flatbed tow is called.

June 20, 2019 - 2:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Stafford.

Angel Ivan Carrasquillo, 43, of Lake Avenue, Rochester is charged with: third-degree burglary; third-degree criminal mischief; attempted grand larceny in the fourth degree; and petit larceny. Following an investigation into a burglary that occurred on Clinton Street Road in the Town of Stafford at 2:27 a.m. on May 2, Carrasquillo was arrested and arraigned in Batavia Town Court. He is currently being held in Genesee County Jail on a separate matter. The case was investigated by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Kevin Forsyth, assisted by Deputy Andrew Mullen. Also assisting were Sgt. John Baiocco, investigators Chris Parker and Chad Minuto, and members of the NYS Police.

Jay W. Schafer, 26, of Walnut Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a firearm. He was arrested at 2:15 a.m. on June 19 after an incident at his residence. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and jailed in lieu of $1,500 cash bail or $3,000 bond. He is due back in city court at a later date. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Quider, assisted by Officer Jason Davis.

Brandon L. Lucas, 35, of Manhatten Square, Rochester, is charged with aggravated unlicensed operation in the second degree and unlawful possession of marijuana. Lucas was arrested at 6:58 p.m. June 18 on Main Street following a traffic stop. He was found to be driving while his driver's license was suspended. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and put in Genesee County Jail in lieu of $1,000 cash bail or bond. He was due to return to city court on June 19. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Officer James DeFreze.

June 20, 2019 - 1:24pm
posted by Billie Owens in accidents, news, Stafford.

A two-car accident is reported at 5449 Clinton Street Road, Stafford. It is blocking traffic. One vehicle's OnStar alert system reports no injuries in that vehicle.

Law enforcement is on scene. Stafford Fire Department is responding along with Mercy medics.

The location is between Horseshoe Lake Road and Prole Road Extension.

UPDATE 1:35 p.m.: Fire police are asked to shut down eastbound traffic at Route 33 (Clinton Street Road) and Batavia-Stafford Town Line Road.

June 19, 2019 - 4:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in Milestones, alexander, batavia, corfu, Stafford, bergen, byron, Le Roy, Pavilion, bosom.

A total of 247 students from Genesee Community College were named to the dean's list for the Spring 2019 semester, and 41 of them live in Genesee County. Students honored on the dean's list have maintained full or part-time enrollment and earned a quality point index of 3.50 to 3.74.

Genesee County Spring 2019 dean's list students at GCC:

Caylin Walton of Alexander, NY (14005)

Ryli Crego of Alexander, NY (14005)

Scott Logan of Basom, NY (14013)

Thomas Claffey of Batavia, NY (14020)

Conner Schmit of Batavia, NY (14020)

Amanda Rodriguez of Batavia, NY (14020)

Rachel Flint of Batavia, NY (14020)

Madison Schady of Batavia, NY (14020)

Adam Dixson of Batavia, NY (14020)

Kelly Butler of Batavia, NY (14020)

Daysha Mast of Batavia, NY (14020)

Ashley Schiefer of Batavia, NY (14020)

Evan Bellavia of Batavia, NY (14020)

Amber Snyder of Batavia, NY (14020)

Danielle Joyce of Batavia, NY (14020)

Tyler Prospero of Batavia, NY (14020)

Austin Davis of Batavia, NY (14020)

Jessica Newton of Batavia, NY (14020)

Micheal Van Dorn of Batavia, NY (14020)

Kristen Saeva of Batavia, NY (14020)

Bailey Gavenda of Batavia, NY (14020)

Kitana Maher of Bergen, NY (14416)

Hayley Hoehn of Bergen, NY (14416)

Julia Menzie of Bergen, NY (14416)

Grace Campbell of Byron, NY (14422)

Kaeli LaFrance of Byron, NY (14422)

Jamie Maskell of Byron, NY (14422)

Brandon Kowalski of Corfu, NY (14036)

Ashlee Gilchrist of Corfu, NY (14036)

Jenna Salim of Corfu, NY (14036)

Mackenzie Simpson of Le Roy, NY (14482)

Morgan Luce of Le Roy, NY (14482)

Magnum Kibler of Le Roy, NY (14482)

Eva Rhoads of Le Roy, NY (14482)

Madison Brandes of Le Roy, NY (14482)

Sarah Glor of Oakfield, NY (14125)

Katelyn Barnes of Pavilion, NY (14525)

Kirsten Edwards of Pavilion, NY (14525)

Josilynn Russo of Pavilion, NY (14525)

Caleb Busch of Stafford, NY (14143)

Julie Carasone of Stafford, NY (14143)

Genesee Community College serves approximately 6,000 students per semester through more than 70 academic programs and certificates, including the Marketing and Social Media concentration within the Business Administration program, and the new Nanotechnology degree with ECC. On a microscopic scale, nanotech focuses on careers in biology, chemistry, electrical engineering, medicine and photovoltaics. 

GCC's Student Success Center makes admissions, financial aid and enrollment a simple and efficient process. The college has earned three national sports titles The athletics program, housed in the state-of-the-art Richard C. Call Arena hosts more than a dozen intercollegiate men's and women's teams.

Highly convenient, GCC operates seven campus locations throughout Western New York, as well as a significant online learning program. College housing is available at College Village, just a three minute walk from the Batavia Campus. With small class sizes and state-of-the-art technology both inside and out of the classroom, Genesee Community College is known for being "high tech" and "high touch."

June 17, 2019 - 5:01pm
posted by Billie Owens in accidents, news, Stafford.

A motorcycle accident is reported on Route 33 in Stafford. Stafford Fire Department and Mercy medics responded. South Byron Fire Police are called to shut down Route 33 at Griswald Road and Route 33 at Route 237.

Mercy Flight is called to the scene.

UPDATE 5:34 p.m.: A husband and wife were riding their respective motorcycles, he on a black bike, she on a red Honda, when he slowed down for unknown reasons. His wife, who was just behind him, slowed suddenly to avoid hitting him and she lost control of her bike and crashed. She had an open-face helmet on and suffered road rash on her face and extremities and complained of head, chest and abdomen pain. A trooper at the scene said she was taken by Mercy Flight to Strong Memorial Hospital.The husband was not injured. No other vehicles were involved. 

June 12, 2019 - 4:17pm
Event Date and Time: 
June 16, 2019 - 1:00pm to 7:00pm

4th Annual Stafford Firemen's Father's Day Retro Jam & Musician's Reunion
Sunday 16, 2019 • Live Music 1-7pm
Located behind the Stafford Fire Department, Route 5, Stafford NY.

Food Trucks, BYO Lawn Chair/Cooler.
Bands Appearing: Ryan & Scott, Front Porch Pickers, Ghost Riders, Howe's That, TONK (RET.), Rock-a-Bully's, KW Does Country, Guests and Friends. 
Band schedule subject to change.

Good Fan's, Good Families, Good Food, Good Music, Good Friends, Good Times!

June 6, 2019 - 12:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, Stafford, video.
Video Sponsor


For our initial post about the fire, click here.

UPDATE: Video code corrected. It works now.

June 6, 2019 - 8:58am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, Stafford, news, notify.

A house fire is reported at 6000 Horseshoe Lake Road, Stafford.

All occupants are out of the house. There are animals in the house. 

The fire is at the rear of the residence and into the roofline.

Stafford fire and Town of Batavia fire dispatched.

Bergen, Byron, South Byron, and City of Batavia Fast Team also dispatched.

UPDATE(S) (By Billie) 9:03 a.m.: Flames seen in rear of structure according to callers to dispatch. Stafford's second alarm called. 

UPDATE 9:05 a.m.: Command on scene reports smoke showing from eaves, but no flames, of a single-story ranch house that's close to the road. Le Roy is called to Stafford's fire hall.

UPDATE 9:06 a.m.: Mercy medics are called to respond because of "slight smoke inhalation" by the homeowner.

UPDATE 9:08 a.m.: Elba is asked to fill in at Byron's fire hall.

UPDATE 9:09 a.m.: National Grid is called to the scene.

UPDATE 9:14 a.m.: Stafford command reports fire knocked down; checking for extensions. Stafford Fire Police are called in for traffic control.

UPDATE 9:17 a.m.: Le Roy, standing by in Stafford's quarters, is called to the scene. Oakfield is asked to stand by in Town of Batavia fire's station #1; Pavilion is called to Stafford's hall. The homeowner signed off, declining medical treatment.

UPDATE 9:34 a.m.: Caledonia, which was standing by in quarters, is moved to Le Roy's fire hall.

UPDATE 11:15 a.m.: The fire appears to have started in the kitchen. The homeowner believes a space heater was plugged in and in use at the site where the fire broke out, but it remains unknown if that is indeed what started the fire, according to scene commander Mark Dougherty, 4th assistant chief of Le Roy Fire Department. The house is heavily damaged, but it is unknown at this point if it's considered to be a total loss. Two cats lived there and one of them perished in the blaze; the other is missing. The family that lives in the house plans to stay with family. Video T/K.

June 3, 2019 - 2:16pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, Stafford.

An auger has struck and punctured a natural gas pipeline in the area of Route 237 and Britt Road in Stafford. The gas can be heard "hissing and blowing" out of the ground.

RG&E is the caller to the Emergency Dispatch Center. An RG&E crew has an hour ETA to the scene.

Stafford Fire Department is responding.

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