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Christmas

December 26, 2018 - 1:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Pavilion, Christmas, news.

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A family in Pavilion had a very Griswold-Christmas this year, outfitting the family wagon with an uprooted Christmas tree, decorating with a greased-up sled, tangled lights on an old camper -- all staples of the 1989 classic comedy, "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation," starring Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold.

“We watch the movie every year,” Jesse Coots told 13WHAM. “We love it.”

What started as a good laugh about imitating the movie became a reality for the Coots family.

“We got joking about how the movie goes, and how they uproot the Christmas tree and all that jazz,” he said. “We like to laugh around here, so I was sitting around one day, just screwing around and looking for station wagons, and we found this one, and it’s got 33,000 original miles.

“I kind of surprised the wife and the kids and made a deal in the middle of the night, and this guy brought it out,” he continued. “Bought it, and we uprooted a Christmas tree with a couple of friends of mine and tied her up, strapped it up, Chevy Chase-style.”

The Coots family had intended for theirs to be an inside joke – but they couldn’t contain their neighbors’ glee.

“Really, it was just going to be between us, then a couple people posted videos of us driving through town, and the community kind of laughed,” said Coots.

And that humor, says Coots, is what the display is all about.

“Every night, there’s cars pulling up, and I like it because they’re here to laugh, and that’s what we like to do, is laugh,” he said. “It’s good for your heart.

“I have gotten so many nice phone calls and emails and text messages about how it’s brightened people’s spirits and made them laugh,” he said, “and a lot of people have told me they get on Facebook every day to see what kind of nonsense we’re up to with this.”

Will it be a Christmas tradition? Coots isn’t sure – but he says, if it is, his kids will be on board.

“I build custom cars for a living,” he said. “You’d think, all the great cars I have, they would love some of the hot rods. They love this stock station wagon more than anything. They don’t want it to go!”

Story and photos courtesy our news partner, 13WHAM

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December 26, 2018 - 1:06pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, st. paul's, Christmas, news.

Submitted photos and press release:

St. Paul's Lutheran School in Batavia held its annual school Christmas program on Dec. 20.

The mission of St. Paul Lutheran School is to enable the families of the community to know Jesus as their Savior by providing a Christian educational environment which fosters academic excellence.

At St. Paul's, school is a family!

All teachers, staff, students and families work together to create a loving, inspiring and encouraging environment in which children can thrive to their greatest potential -- a great way to begin your child's education experience.

At St. Paul's they like to say "We don't raise little Lutherans, we develop Disciples of Christ."

December 22, 2018 - 5:38pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Christmas lights, Christmas.

December 21, 2018 - 1:20pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news, Christmas.

Statement from Assemblyman Steve Hawley:

“My family and I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas! This is a special time of year that brings together many families, friends and loved ones in celebration. Everyone has their own unique holiday traditions.

"Whether it’s baking cookies for Santa, watching a classic Christmas movie on TV or something else, these traditions make the season special. Enjoy this time with loved ones, and again, have a very Merry Christmas!”

December 19, 2018 - 4:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in St. Anthony's, City Church, batavia, news, Christmas.

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City Church hosted its annual community Christmas party at St. Anthony's on Liberty Street, Batavia, last night, and gave away 33 bikes to children from the neighborhood.

They also handed out a ton of toys.

Numerous people donated bikes, toys, and money to the event, said Ryan Macdonald.

Photos by Mo Schoen.

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December 17, 2018 - 6:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in byron-bergen, news, Christmas.

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Press release:

Members of the Byron-Bergen Central School District’s learning community can always be counted on to provide assistance to neighbors in need during the holidays. For many years, district students, teachers, staff, and administrators have worked together with local partners to make the season happier for everyone in the Byron-Bergen area. This year’s Holiday Community Service program collected toys and games, clothing items, rolls of wrapping paper, boxes for wrapping gifts, and over 2,000 non-perishable food items. In addition, close to $4,000 was donated by the faculty, staff, and others in our learning community to purchase gifts for district families in need. Many area businesses also helped out by “adopting” local families and individuals, providing special holiday gifts.

The District partnered with the local Hesperus Lodge No. 837 Free & Accepted Masons, where donated food items were taken for sorting and packing. Organized by Dick Sands, Carol and David Coffta, and the Masons; employees from both the Byron-Bergen Elementary and Jr./Sr. High Schools, Board of Education members, and community volunteers pitched in to help. More school volunteers helped to deliver over 100 food baskets and gifts before the holidays.

“The magic of this special season is the community spirit it inspires in so many of us,” said District Superintendent Mickey Edwards. “I am so proud of the generosity shown by all of the members of our learning community.”

A big part of the program’s success this year was the contribution made by the Varsity Club Holiday Food Drive. Student-athletes from the high school pulled together to collect more than 950 food items—a record amount. The food drive was organized by Varsity Club student officers, combined with hard work provided by the girls and boys basketball teams and the swim team. Team members pooled their competitive spirit to make the challenge more fun: it became a contest, won by the girls basketball team who collected almost 400 items. Varsity team members from all three seasons of sports at Byron-Bergen perform community service throughout the school year, with projects like the annual Lift-a-thon, the Retro Apparel Sale, and the spring Blood Drive. 

Top photo: Volunteers from the Byron-Bergen learning community packed over 100 food baskets and delivered them during the weekend of December 15. 

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Byron-Bergen Central School District faculty and staff volunteered to wrap the many donated gifts. 

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Varsity Club members with a few of the hundreds of donated items collected for the Holiday Food Drive. 

December 17, 2018 - 6:03pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Christmas, St. Joe's, news, schools, education.

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Students in Ann Marie Starowitz's class at St. Joe's performed a Christmas story play today for the third week of Advent that included students narrating the story of the birth of Jesus and singing Christmas songs for their fellow students.

Photos by Howard Owens. Bottom photo by Ann Marie Starowitz.

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December 12, 2018 - 12:56pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Christmas, batavia, news, arts, entertainment.

As he has done each of the past few years, Carmen DelPlato has shared with us Christmas song with lyrics by his mother, Mary DelPlato, and music and performance by Anthony DelPlato.

December 11, 2018 - 6:08pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in T.F. Brown's, Christmas, Community Dinner, batavia, news.

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Since the 1990s, T.F. Brown's and the Batavia Lions Club have hosted a free Christmas Day dinner open to the whole community and the tradition continues in 2018.

Anybody in the community is welcome to attend with a reservation for either the noon or 1 p.m. meal, which includes a visit for children with Santa and a present.

To help support the dinner, T.F. Brown's is hosting a Christmas Happy Hour and Ugly Sweater Contest from 4 to 8 p.m., Dec. 20. Guest who donate a toy get a free beverage. There will be dinner and drink specials and prizes with the DSP Jazz Trio performing from 5 to 8 p.m.

For community members wishing to attend the dinner, reservations are required. Call Barb at 345-1000. She will need to know how many people are attending and the names and ages of children who will be there.

Photo: Becky Amico, Lions, Rick Mancuso, owner of T.F. Brown's, Joe Teresi, Lions, and Frank Yanik, a cook at T.F. Brown's.

December 3, 2018 - 2:53pm
posted by Genesee Chamber... in holiday, tourism, news, Christmas.

Sleigh bells ring, children sing, and winter is all around us. The holiday season has arrived, and celebrations and festivities abound in Genesee County.

From a one-man Christmas Carol show to a train ride that takes you straight to the North Pole, there are so many ways to celebrate. So, bundle up for tree lighting, ready your camera for pictures with Santa, and put on those dancing shoes -- we’ve rounded up enough events to keep you busy until 2019!

Village of Bergen Tree Lighting

Bergen Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony, Dec. 3

Join the festivities! Starting from Hickory Park, carolers will lead the way to Ward park where the tree lighting ceremony will take place. Enjoy the company of your friends, neighbors and Mr. & Mrs. Claus.

Winter Wonderland of Lights at Red Osier, Dec. 3 & 10

The Original Red Osier Landmark Restaurant is rapidly becoming the largest holiday display in Genesee County! With over 2 million lights on display, Red Osier pulls out all the stops to celebrate the season. On Dec. 3 & 10, come out for pictures with Santa, horse and carriage rides, food from the Red Osier trailer, and homemade Christmas cookies.

DIY Evergreen Centerpieces, Dec. 5, 8 & 14

Decorations are all part of the holiday fun – and you can make your own with Pudgie's. Join a DIY class and create your own evergreen centerpiece. Materials and instruction are provided. Four workshops will be taking place in December!

Snowshoeing at Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge, Dec. 8

Don't let winter make you blue, grab some friends and come snowshoe at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge. This free event is perfect for snowshoe enthusiasts and beginners alike -- you can even borrow snowshoes at no extra cost. Spend the morning exploring the Kanyoo Trail on Route 77.

Christmas in the Park, Dec. 8

The holiday season is all about family, and this lighted tree ceremony in Veterans Memorial Park is no different. Join the Elba Betterment Committee to honor and remember loved ones in a celebration of the season. Members of the Elba Central School music department will lead Christmas caroling, cookies and cocoa will be provided, and Santa himself will join to read "‘Twas the Night Before Christmas" to children of all ages.

GSO Holiday Celebration, Dec. 9

The Genesee Symphony Orchestra knows exactly how to celebrate in the spirit of the holidays. Grab your ticket and enjoy a program that incorporates music spanning from “A Charlie Brown Christmas” to “Sleigh Ride” and “Christmas Festival” by Leroy Anderson. Founded in 1947, GSO is one of the oldest civic orchestras in New York State.

DIY Holiday Wreaths, Dec. 10 & 12

Is your door really complete without a wreath to adorn it? Come out to Pudgie's on three dates in December to make your own holiday wreath – complete with all of the trimmings and extras you could ever want.

Christmas at Hillcrest, Dec. 15

Hillcrest Estate transforms into a winter wonderland befitting of the big man himself! Gather by a crackling fire and get a rare peek inside the grand ballroom, where local vendors offer Christmas goodies, holiday cookies call for decorations, and Santa waits with his elves to welcome good girls and boys. Picturesque backdrops will be found throughout the property – the perfect place to grab a family photo for the Christmas card.

'A Christmas Carol starring' Mike Randall, Dec. 21

'A Christmas Carol' like you’ve never seen it before! Join Mike Randall and as he shares the festive and heart-warming story of "A Christmas Carol." Enjoy Randall's acting talents as he performs the story through distinguishing voices for each unique character, while in costume as Charles Dickens himself. You won't want to miss this one-of-a-kind performance.

Santa & Reindeer Train Ride, Dec. 22

On the Santa & Reindeer train, everyone rides with Santa! In just half an hour, the train magically reaches the North Pole where everyone gets to visit Santa’s reindeer. All tickets include admission into the Medina Railroad Museum, hot cocoa, a cookie and a reindeer toy for children.

Le Roy's "First Night," Dec. 31

Join locals in welcoming the New Year in Le Roy. Shops will be open to browse, purchase warm drinks, enjoy entertainment and “ooo” and “ahhh” at the fireworks starting at 9 p.m. Main Street Bridge provides the best view for this family-friendly event – but get there early to secure your spot!

Countdown at the Downs—New Year’s Eve Party! Dec. 31

Don't miss the New Year's Eve Party going down at The Downs! Ring in 2019 with delicious food and drinks, plenty of dancing, and, of course, free play at the casino. The countdown to midnight will be celebrated with fireworks and a champagne toast. Package rates for hotel nights are also available. 

New Year’s Eve Party, Dec. 31

Oakfield is ready to welcome 2019 with a bang – and a party of their own! Join the celebration with family, friends, and fun from 7 p.m. – 2 a.m. There’s plenty of party to go around.

The fun continues straight into 2019. Visit the events page here to find out more.

December 2, 2018 - 4:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Christmas in the City, Christmas, batavia, news, downtown, BID.

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The Batavia Improvement District hosted Christmas in the City last night, which included sleigh rides, a toy train ride, visits with Santa (and the Grinch) along with local Christmas shopping.

For pictures of the parade by Jim Burns, click here.

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Gregory Hallock as Grinch and Nora Browne as Cindy Lou at GO ART! Hallock made his costume while Paige Sikorski, who is 13, put on his makeup.

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Paul Grazioplene posed with Grinch, trying to convince his child that Grinch wasn't scary but the child didn't buy it.

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There's a tiny little bundle in Santa's lap. It's 1-month-old Greyson Malcomb getting his first picture with Santa.

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Batavia Police Sgt. Dan Coffey with Bo Coffey and Alyssa Coffey. Bo and Dan were in line waiting for a ride in the horse-drawn sleigh.

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December 2, 2018 - 4:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Pavilion, news, Christmas.

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The Town of Pavilion held its first Christmas tree lighting yesterday, with residents and local businesses decorating trees in the park in Pavilion.

Several families decorated trees in memory of loved ones who have passed. 

The tree in the top photo is a memorial to Bill Prosser, a Navy veteran who served at the end of World War II. In the photo: Joan, Debbie Prosser, Ken Prosser, Jim Prosser, and Liz Prosser.

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Rhonda Clary with a memorial tree for her son John, a popular student at Pavilion High  School who died in 2004.

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The family of Jack Carney with a memorial tree for him.

December 2, 2018 - 3:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, winterfest, news, Christmas.

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It was Winterfest in Le Roy yesterday. Along with shopping, crafts, and Santa, there was the annual 5K race. We were there for the start of the race.

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December 2, 2018 - 2:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Oakfield, news, Christmas.

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Kaitlyn Sturgeon tells Santa that for Christmas she wants a big Lego set during Santa's visit to Oakfield yesterday.

Below, Christian Quinn, Kaylee Quinn, Mitchell Quinn, Kaitlyn and Hannah Sturgeon.

While in Oakfield, we also visited the Genesee Society of Model Engineers' annual open house.

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December 2, 2018 - 2:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl, batavia, news, Christmas.

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Six-year-old Taylor Moorehead tells Santa and Mrs. Claus that she wants a remote car for Christmas during a visit to Foxprowl on Ellicott Street in Batavia yesterday.

A few superheroes also dropped in at the store, as well.

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December 1, 2018 - 9:14pm
posted by James Burns in news, Christmas, batavia.

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Saturday night was Batavia’s Christmas in the City Parade. It was a little cold, at times there was a little rain, but a lot of fun was had by all in attendance. 

The parade had a new rouet and direction down Main Street, concentrating most of the crowd from city hall down to Bank Street. 

There were a few first-time participants enjoying Christmas in the City this year. The person I talked to was surprised by the large turnout and said that they had never made it out for the event before. She said her and her family would be sure to make the event an annual family trip from now on. 

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November 23, 2018 - 6:09pm
posted by Billie Owens in The Salvation Army, charity, Christmas, news, notify.

As many know The Salvation Army is quite busy this time of the year preparing for Christmas. This year we expect to help approximately 300 families here in Genesee County. This will include food for Christmas dinner.

We work hard to be able to give each family a turkey. In years passed Holiday Ice has generously provided freezer space to store the turkeys as we collect them between Thanksgiving and our distribution date just before Christmas.

We were just informed that this option is not available to us this year. We desperately need to find someplace to store frozen turkeys this season.

Our onsite freezers are near capacity. Is there perhaps a restaurant or other facility that could help us with this dire need?

Todd L. Rapp
Office Manager
Director Emergency Disaster Services 
The Salvation Army 
Batavia, NY 14020
585-343-6284 (office)
585-734-8145 (cellular)

November 21, 2018 - 3:26pm

Press release:

Northgate Free Methodist Church invites the community to a "Vintage Christmas" event from 5 to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 8th.

Enjoy a festive Christmas tractor hayride through our community prayer walk, complete with carols and a retelling of the Christmas story. Come roast marshmallows around our bonfire, eat s’mores, drink hot chocolate, while the children are invited to create ornaments for the tree.

There will be a brief devotional, presented at 6 p.m., to ready our hearts and minds for the Christmas season, accompanied by a spectacular tree lighting. This is a free event, open to all ages, come and go as you please.

Northgate Free Methodist Church is located at 8160 Bank Street Road, Batavia. For more information, contact the Northgate office at (585)343-4011 or email [email protected]

November 8, 2018 - 2:36pm
posted by Allison Lang in Christmas, family, kids.
Event Date and Time: 
December 8, 2018 - 5:00pm to 8:00pm
Northgate Free Methodist Church invites the community to a ‘Vintage Christmas’ event, on Saturday, December 8th, from 5-8pm.  Enjoy a festive Christmas tractor hayride through our community prayer walk, complete with carols and a retelling of the Christmas story.  Come roast marshmallows around our bonfire, eat s’mores, drink hot chocolate, while the children are invited to create ornaments for the tree. There will be a small devotional, presented at 6pm, to ready our hearts and minds for the Christmas season, accompanied by a spectacular tree lighting.

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