Genesee County is set to welcome 150 members of Blue Knights New York IV, who will converge on Batavia over the Columbus Day weekend to attend the Blue Knights International Convention and the Tri-State Conference.
While in the area the group is working with area businesses to provide food, drink and entertainment to the attendees. They are returning to Batavia for the first time since 2014 and their event will leave an estimated $40,000 economic impact to the area.
Blue Knights New York IV was founded in 1986 by a small group of NYS Corrections officers from Groveland Correctional Facility in Sonyea in Livingston County. Since that time, NY IV has grown to become a vibrant part of the Blue Knights organization.
The current members come from all facets of the law enforcement community consisting of active and retired members from city, town and village police, county sheriffs, New York State Police (including BCI), New York State Parole and State Corrections. These officers have ranks all the way from chief of oolice to entry level officer.
With a general 50-mile radius of the original Groveland -- Sonyea Charter address, NY IV stretches along the Interstate 390 corridor from the shores of Lake Ontario to the Southern Tier. Their area covers Allegany, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Orleans, Ontario, Stueben, Wayne, and Wyoming counties.
Their activities and accomplishments equal that of much larger chapters. Throughout Blue Knights lifetime, New York IV has organized or participated in charity events for the American Cancer Society, United Cerebral Palsey, the Kali Poulton Research Foundation, Ronald McDonald House, the Association for Retarded Citizens (ARC), Strong Memorial Hospital's Children's Center, and for Lifetime Assistance Inc.
NY IV was also a sponsoring chapter of the Attica -- 9/11 Memorial Ride conducted by NY 8 for five years, which memorializes those slain corrections officers from the 1971 Attica Prison riot and all those officers killed in the line of duty throughout the country and in particular at the Sept. 11th tragedy in NYC.
Following the termination of the Attica Ride event, NY IV was then a sponsoring club for several years of Operation Patriot. This event honored all law enforcement, firefighters, EMS and military and was held on the 9/11 Weekend. In the past, they have supported the Genesee Valley Chapter of C.O.P.S. and a Christmas in July Toy Ride to benefit the Golisano Children's Center at Strong Memorial Hospital. This event brings hundreds of toys to the hospitalized children at a time of year when many are forgotten.