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Tuesday, March 17, 2015 at 12:07 pm

Town of Pembroke officials look at options in the event the Village of Corfu dissolves

post by Howard B. Owens in corfu, pembroke

Town of Pembroke officials ran through a series of issues Monday evening they might face if Village of Corfu residents go through with a referendum to dissolve their government.

There are legal questions to be answered and issues about how to resolve certain expenses related to the village, but in the end, Supervisor Annie Lawrence acknowledged, the question of dissolution isn't really the town board's call.

"We don't run the show," Lawrence said. "This is their decision. There isn't really anything the town can do other than be as prepared as we can be for the town to absorb the village."

The town will have to deal with issues related to village street lighting, brush pick up, sidewalks and police coverage, all under the legal obligation to ensure whatever is done for the village must a service provided to the entire town. Either that or set up special districts.

Town Attorney Mark Boylan said that in his opinion, there need not be a special district set up for street lights because the town currently has street lights at some intersections.  

Since National Grid owns and maintains the village street lights, there is no anticipated future capital expense for the lights, just the $10,000 or so annually to keep them lit.

Street lights, then, can be a general fund expense shared by the entire town if there's no longer a village government.

Sidewalks are a stickier issue. There are some sidewalks in East Pembroke. But for the most part, the town doesn't need to repair or replace sidewalks, therefore it's harder to legally justify making sidewalks a town-wide expense, Boylan explained.

It's more likely, a sidewalk district would need to be defined for the area of the village and a special assessment levied on residents within that district.

Parts of the village that don't currently have sidewalks could, theoretically at least, be carved out of the district, but then a whole new district would need to be created if those neighborhoods ever wanted sidewalks.

On brush pick up, the town would either need to increase the frequency of pick up for the entire town, decrease the frequency for the village, or ask everybody to self-service brush drop-off at a composting station. The service would need to be equal across all areas of the town.

On the issue of police, in order for the village police department to survive the dissolution, the town would have to take on the expense of a police department that patrols the entire town. That would mean expanding the department, hiring more officers, buying patrol vehicles, thereby making the whole operation expensive.

Or the town could contract, perhaps for about $60,000 a year, with the Sheriff's Office to provide extra coverage in the town. While that would likely mean increased patrols in the village, the town cannot contract just for village coverage. The patrols would be responsible, during their shifts, for the entire town.

The village currently has about $250,000 in capital reserves. Boylan said he's waiting for clarification from the state on how that money could be used after the dissolution.

Could it be dedicated to the needs of the present village residents -- such as sidewalks -- or must it just get mixed in with the town's general fund?

"Unfortunately, the state is not every clear," Boylan said. "They are not very clear in the least on how this is supposed to play out."

One solution is for the village government to spend the reserves down if the dissolution resolution is passed by village residents, thereby ensuring the funds collected from village residents provides services for village residents.

No date has been set for a vote on dissolution. But when it does take place, dissolution cannot occur in the same year the vote is taken, so there will be some delay between the vote and the date the village government ceases to exist.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015 at 11:42 am

Photo: Snowy owl at the airport

post by Howard B. Owens in animals, Genesee County Airport, nature, snowy owl

Rebecca Grela shared this picture she took Saturday of the snowy owl at the Genesee County Airport.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015 at 11:30 am

Hawley happy with progress on Women's Equality legislation

post by Howard B. Owens in steve hawley

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) today commented on the Assembly’s decision to pass one plank of the 10-point omnibus Women’s Equality Act (WEA). Hawley was proud to see this legislation finally come before the entire Assembly for a vote and said that a measure of such great importance should not have taken this long to pass the house. The Assembly Majority has blocked separate WEA bills from moving out of committee in order to use the entire 10-bill package, which contains a controversial abortion provision, as a tool for political gain. 

“Today we take a giant leap forward toward enacting true gender equality for New York’s women,” Hawley said. “It is unfortunate that a measure of this magnitude was held for so long in committee by members of the Majority. It is a disservice to New York’s women and an embarrassment to our government that we could not bring this legislation to the floor for a vote earlier. The Assembly Minority Conference has been at the forefront of passing this package as separate bills for years, and today we can finally claim victory.”

Hawley’s comments come after the Assembly passed A.506, which will enact the Trafficking Victims Protection and Justice Act. Identical legislation, Assembly Bill 2704, was introduced by the Minority Conference several years ago but members of the Majority have refused to take action upon it.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015 at 11:11 am

Pole and wire down on Lake Road, Pavilion

post by Howard B. Owens in Pavilion

A pole and unknown type of wire are reported down across the roadway in the area of 11338 Lake Road, Pavilion.

That's across from the Pavilion Fire Hall.

Pavilion fire dispatched.

Monday, March 16, 2015 at 6:53 pm

Car crash on Alleghany Road, Alabama

post by Billie Owens in accidents, Alabama

A motor-vehicle accident is reported at 6154 Alleghany Road. A person has facial injuries. Alabama fire and Mercy medics are responding.

Monday, March 16, 2015 at 6:24 pm

Emily Helenbrook dreams big, works hard as she seeks career as opera singer

post by Howard B. Owens in arts, alexander, Emily Helenbrook, music

It's a long way from Alexander, New York, to the Metropolitan Opera House, much further than the 536 miles measured on a Google map, but it's the road Emily Helenbrook has traced in her dreams nearly all her life.

At age 20, Helenbrook is building the resume that just might carry her from small town to big city, including a sixth engagement March 27 and 28 with the Buffalo Philharmonic.

A student at Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester, Helenbrook's aqua eyes glimmer when she talks about what she loves. 

"I'm obsessed with classical music," Helenbrook said. "I can't get enough of it. Even at Eastman, where everybody loves music and that's what they want to do with their lives, I'm still the one who is constantly listening to more music and I love it. My grandpa was the same way. Music was his life and seeing him as I grew and grew into being a musician, I saw how much he was devoted and I wanted to be like that."

That love of classical music began at home. Arias and etudes weren't something she was introduced to. It was what she was born into.  

Her grandfather, Mathew Tworek was an original member of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra as a violinist, and master musician and a member for more than 60 years. Her aunt, Adrienne Gryta, was a vocalist and frequent performer with the BPO and Helenbrook's first vocal instructor.

Growing up, all three of the Helenbrook children were introduced to music. Older brother Jason, now a local auctioneer, played flute and twin brother Eric played piano.  

For Emily, music quickly surpassed the hobby stage, however, and became the driving passion of her life.

Passion is what carries her through the hard work of learning her craft and building a career.

People tend to think, Helenbrook acknowledges, that singers just get up and sing, but there's so much more that goes into it. Learning the intricacies of vocal technique is grueling and takes years to master. They also need to research repertoire, study languages and diction, and for performance they must learn more than their own parts, but know and understand other characters, the history of the period and the story.

And that's just the singing part of her life. There are the academics that go into earning her music degree as well as her second degree in political science.

None of that is daunting, though, Helenbrook said.

"For a break, it's my practice time," Helenbrook said. "I don't think of practice as a chore. It's still fun for me, even though it's hard work, it's still fun."

When she needs to get away, she comes home, where there's more space, more quiet and more green.

"I really do appreciate being home," Helenbrook said. "Being in the country is a good way to escape the humdrum of city life. I can't stand it after a while and coming back home to something more simple is really important with the sort of speed of classical music and trying to be a musician."

Success came early for Helenbrook. At 17 she won the Barry/Alexander International Voice Competition, which led to a performance at the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall and an afternoon-long voice lesson with her childhood idol, four-time Grammy winner Renee Fleming.

"She has the most beautiful voice and she's such a nice person," Helenbrook said. "She's a great role model for young singers. I always dreamed maybe some day I could sing for her and maybe she could teach me some things and that's exactly what happened and it was in her house in New York City. It was the craziest thing."

Performing at Carnegie was also a crazy thing, she said.

"That was an out-of-body experience that I don't remember as much as I would like," Helenbrook said. "It was kind of like a dream, in every respect."

It's hard to believe she won't make it back to that great venue. Talented, beautiful, hard working, passionate about her art and establishing the connections that build careers, Helenbrook is doing more than just dreaming.

She also understands, there are no guarantees, which explains the second degree in political science and her plans for law school after graduation. It's a long way from anywhere to the Met.

"Even really, really good singers don't make it," Helenbrook said. "I've seen people at the Met auditions and they're really good, but nothing happens because a lot of it is luck and being the right place at the right time. I know that and I'm trying to be realistic about it. I know what I want. I want to be a singer and I want to at least try to make a career of it, but it's also important to have a backup plan."

For more on Helenbrook's upcoming performance with the BPO and to purchase tickets, click here.

Monday, March 16, 2015 at 4:12 pm

Feeling of community drew new owners to Woody's Deli in Le Roy

post by Howard B. Owens in business, Le Roy, Woody's Deli

It's a bit of a challenge, even for an experienced cook, admits Brian Canalie, to take over somebody else's menu and make it your own.

But just as he and his partners Shane Burger and his wife Melissa decided to keep the name Woody's Deli when they took over the corner market in Le Roy, there was too much good in the menu to just toss it out.

"Right out of the gate, we're concentrating on the food and service, because we have a different approach," Burger said. "The previous owners (Lisa and Justin and Hayward) did a fantastic job, but we want to be here forever. Given our backgrounds in food, we have a little different philosophy on how some things can and should be done. I think that's probably the most important thing. We've added some new things, like homemade cannolis, our chicken tenders are battered here, not frozen, and we've expanded the Mexican menu. We didn't want to do too much too fast because we already have an established clientele in a successful business."

Burger has been a food services manager for the Creekside Inn, Holiday Inn and Batavia Downs, and most recently was manager at Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew.

He and Canalie have been friends for 15 years. Burger said he's the only person he could think of that he would want as a partner in business. They've worked together before, with Canalie also coming over from the Smokin' Eagle, where he was a cook.

"I like that this is right around the corner (from his home)," Canalie said. "I've been a cook almost my entire life, but I've always wanted to own my own place, to be my own boss. It's a chance to show off my chops and what I've learned along the ways."

Already, patrons are getting a different flavor from the new owners. The pizza is now entirely handmade, with a homemade flavor. There's nothing pre-made or frozen. Everything is fresh and made to order.

To move beyond the basics of a deli, the new owners took over the back apartment attached to the building so the kitchen could be expanded, not just the physical space, but the culinary options.

Canalie actually has a place to cook and create now.

"It's been some work, but a good time to do it this time of year," Burger said. "With the winter we've had, most places have been struggling, but our business has been steadily increasing. Our sales increase in February was significantly over the previous year, and the feedback has been fantastic. We're offering homemade soup every day and specials every day and they've been well received."

Growing up in Le Roy, Burger was also attracted to the corner market concept. He said the same business in even a town as close as Pembroke wouldn't have been as attractive as a place as deeply rooted in his hometown as Woody's (the location has operated under various other names for decades).

"I'm used to very large facilities," Burger said. "Outside of the Eagle, it's all been a more corporate setting. This is kind of the last ma-and-pop store in Le Roy. Kind of? It is. There used to be Rabino's and Malone's and lots of little stores like this in the village. They're not here anymore, so being part of the community is probably the biggest draw for me."

Nothing says community more than the parade of kids into the market.

"One of the things I really love about it is the kids that come in," Burger said. "It's very kid friendly ... kids ride their bikes down, get ice cream, candy. It's not always about how much money you're making off each transaction. It's rewarding in that respect, at least for me."

One of the holdovers from Woody's old menu -- the Big Foot, which features every meat in the deli case and weighs in at three pounds.

Woody's is located at 47 North St., Le Roy. Find them on Facebook by clicking here.

Monday, March 16, 2015 at 12:05 pm

Law and Order: Byron man accused of stealing jewelry from homes

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, byron, crime, Le Roy

Justin L. Sanders, 23, of Byron-Holley Road, Byron, is charged with two counts of burglary, 2nd, and one count of grand larceny, 3rd. Larcenies were reported from a residence on Route 237, Byron, in late November through December and two burglaries occurred at a residence on Townline Road, Byron, on Jan. 13 and Jan. 20. Sanders is accused of stealing numerous items of jewelry from the homeowner where he was living. He allegedly stole more than $3,000 worth of jewelry. He allegedly stole coins, jewelry and electronics from the Townline Road residence. Sanders was previously arrested by State Police on similar charges and is being held in the Genesee County Jail. The case was investigated by Deputy John Duyssen and Deputy Joseph Graff and Investigator Kris Kautz.

Alexander L. Waide, 20, of Batavia, is charged with driving while ability impaired by drugs, unlawful possession of marijuana and speeding. Waide was stopped by State Police on Route 98, Village of Attica. A field sobriety test was conducted. He was transported to the Warsaw barracks and evaluated by a certified Drug Recognition Expert from the Wyoming County Sheriff's Office. A urine sample was collected and sent to the crime lab for further analysis. He was released on an appearance ticket.

Gregory Richard Fitch, 33, of Woodstock Gardens, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on an aggravated unlicensed operation, 2nd, charge. Fitch turned himself in and posted $100 police bail.

Lewis C. Rhodes, 36, of Summit Street, Batavia, is charged with coercion, 1st, and menacing, 2nd. Rhodes was allegedly involved in a domestic dispute at 3:12 p.m., Sunday. The victim alleges that she was threatened by Rhodes with a handgun. Rhodes was ordered held without bail.

A 17-year-old resident of South Swan Street, Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd. The youth, whose name was withheld by police, allegedly threatened another person several times over a period of two months.

Adam Daniel Smart, 32, of Washington Avenue, Batavia, is charged with two counts of criminal contempt, 2nd. Smart allegedly violated a complete stay away order of protection.

Tyquawn D. Bethel, 24, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with burglary, 2nd. Bethel was arrested in relation to an alleged incident reported Feb. 11. No further details released.

James A. Hancock, 45, of Dellinger Avenue, Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Hancock allegedly pushed and shoved another person during an argument. Hancock was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Ralph A. Golding III, 50, of Buell Street, Akron, is charged with petit larceny, public lewdness and escape, 3rd. Golding allegedly stole $5 in quarters from machines at Dollar General. Golding allegedly engaged in a lewd act while in custody at Batavia PD. He also allegedly tried to escape by defeating the lock mechanism on the holding room door. He was jailed on $2,500 bail or $5,000 bond.

Justine D. McWethy, 28, of Fairway Drive, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and criminal use of drug paraphernalia, 2nd. McWethy was allegedly found in possession of heroin and glassine baggies.

Thomas E. Hansel, 31, of Oak Street, Batavia, was arrested on a bench warrant for alleged failure to appear on a possession of burglary tools charge. Hansel was located at Days Inn and taken into custody. He was jailed on $500 bail.

Tonya D. Smith, 29, of Oak Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a charge of operating while registration suspended or revoked. Smith was located at the Days Inn and taken into custody. Smith was jailed on $100 bail.

Joseph Michael Dispenza Jr., 21, of East Main Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant stemming from a DWI charge. Dispenza allegedly violated terms and conditions of City Court's DWI Treatment Court. Dispenza allegedly turned up at intermittent incarceration while under the influence of alcohol. He was jailed on $100,000 bail.

Michael J. Robbins, 55, of Lake Street, Le Roy, is charged with criminal possession of a forged instrument, 2nd. Robbins allegedly cashed a forged personal check at the drive-up window of the Five Start Bank on East Main Street, Batavia.

Michael Joseph Myers Jr., 56, of Roosevelt Highway, Hamlin, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, refusal to take breath test and moved from lane unsafely. Myers was stopped at 12:11 a.m., Saturday, on Route 237, Stafford, by Deputy Joseph Corona.

Tanyana Reedidizie Bell, 23, of Ross Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal mischief, 4th. Bell allegedly damaged property belonging to Pandora's Boxxx.

Kevin Lloyd Kenyon, 60, of Golden Pond Estates, Akron, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and inadequate headlights. Kenyon was stopped at 8:27 p.m. Friday on Lewiston Road, Batavia, by Sgt. Thomas Sanfratello.

Henry Leon Polanowski, 35, of North Pearl Street, Oakfield, is charged with unauthorized use of a vehicle. Polanowski allegedly drove another person's vehicle without permission. He was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Andrea Nichole Kirch, 26, of Pratt Road, Batavia, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and speeding. Kirch was stopped at 2:01 a.m. Friday on Route 77, Pembroke, by Deputy Patrick Reeves. A 16-year-old resident of Pratt Road, Batavia, was also charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. 

Joseph Hur Bianchi, 33, of Northgate Manor Avenue, Rochester, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and inadequate stop lamps. Bianchi was stopped at 12:05 p.m. Friday on Route 77, Pembroke, by Deputy Patrick Reeves.

Jenna L. Brodzinski, 31, of Rochester, is charged with petit larceny and criminal possession of a controlled substance. Brodzinski was arrested by State Police for allegedly shoplifting from Target. No further details released.

Norman M. Bialuski, 45, of Brockport, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Bialuski was stopped at 2:32 a.m. Sunday at East Main and Clinton streets, Batavia, by State Police.

Sunday, March 15, 2015 at 3:43 pm

Photo: Riding mower escort on Liberty Street

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia

Nicole Johnson, while working at the Pok-A-Dot this afternoon, snapped this picture of Batavia PD giving a guy on his riding mower a safety escort across Ellicott Street and down Liberty Street. Johnson said police stopped the rider by the Dot and provided the escort after conducting a sobriety test.

Sunday, March 15, 2015 at 3:03 pm

Today's Deals: Back for the season - Dave's Ice Cream, plus O'Lacy's, Oliver's, Little Ridge, and more!

post by Billie Owens in Deal of the Day

BACK FOR THE SEASON!  Dave's Ice Cream, 3872 W. Main Street Road, Batavia, NY: Dave's offers only locally purchased products, including Perry's hard ice cream in a wide variety of yummy flavors, with a wonderful assortment of toppings and homemade waffle cones. Different soft-serve flavors are offered weekly. Open daily 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. We have a $10 gift certificate for $4.

Byron Hotel, 6874 Byron Holley Road, Byron, NY: Located in the center of town and equipped with a full bar, the Byron Hotel restaurant offers an excellent selection of soups, salads, sandwiches, seafood, steaks and pasta. Its casual and friendly atmosphere is much like that of a neighborhood bar. Outside there's an open patio. Indoors there's a well-stocked jukebox. We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

El Burrito Loco, 4125 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Located in Valu Plaza, this new eatery offers tasty, authentic Mexican fare. Tell us what you want on your burrito! We make it fresh just for you. Choose from steak, seasoned ground beef, chicken, pork, and/or beans -- black, refried or pinto. Other ingredients to choose from include lettuce, tomatoes, shredded cheese, guacamole, Spanish or white rice, cilantro, salsa, and jalapeno peppers. The menu also offers tacos, quesadillas, burrito bowls, loaded nachos, Mexican soda pop, lemonade, and more! Relax and eat in, or take out. Call in your order if you like -- 219-4620. We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

The Little Ridge, 107 Evans St., Batavia NY, 14020: The Little Ridge continues the long-standing history of fantastic food from Batavia's local favorite, Delavan's. Fine dining and family fare combine to offer the best of both. We offer Friday night Fish Fry, prime rib dinner on Saturdays, steaks, burgers, salads, and classic Italian dishes. Open Tuesday through Sunday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Phone 815-5118. Take-outs available. Kids' menu. Weekly and daily lunch and dinner specials. On Saturday, breakfast is served from 9 to 11 a.m. Good food, good friends, good times! We have a $25 gift certificate for $15.

Viking Valhalla Restaurant & Rose Garden Bowl21 Buffalo Road, Bergen, NY: Open for lunch Monday through Sunday, and dinner Friday and Saturday evenings. Dinner favorites are our succulent prime rib and Friday fish fries! We are always happy to help plan your special occasion -- wedding, shower, rehearsal dinner, stag party, graduation, company function, banquet, family or class reunion. We have a $20 gift certificate for $7.

John & Mary's Restaurant, 3711 W. Main Street Road, Batavia, NY: This popular restaurant offers a varied menu that people love. From subs, hoagies, hand-tossed pizza, and wings, to fish & chips, salads, Mexican food, gyros and other Greek fare, it's all here. Only the finest and freshest ingredients are used. Bread, using homemade dough, baked fresh daily. Amazing specialty pizzas and appetizers! "We never waver on quality!" Delivery available all day, every day. We offer catering. Hours 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

Rancho Viejo, 12 Ellicott St., Batavia, NY: Traditional Mexican cuisine, from tacos and burritos to pollo norteno, Rancho Viejo brings a bit of "South of the Border" to Batavia's restaurant scene. We have a $10 gift card for $6.

Oliver's Candies, 211 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Oliver's, a Batavia landmark, offers the finest chocolate and confections in the area. We have a $20 gift card for $12.

Settler's, 353 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Settler's has a 25-year history of serving great, affordable breakfasts, lunches and dinners to Batavians. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Bohn's Restaurant, 5256 Clinton St., Batavia, NY: Fine dining in an atmosphere of casual elegance. Lunch and dinner, steak, prime rib and seafood. Ask about Bohn's catering services and banquet facility. We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.

Blue Pearl Yoga, 200 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: Stretch your body and soul with yoga. This offer is for a $20 gift certificate for the price of $5. Not good with any other discounts or offers. Excludes workshops.

The Mane Attraction Salon and Spa99 Main St., Batavia, NY: offers "Affordable Luxury" in Downtown Batavia. We pride ourselves in the great customer service we give to the entire family. Men, women and children are all welcome either by appointment or walk-in. We offer all hair care services including cuts, color, highlights, lowlights, perms, styling/updos, facials, leg and back waxing, Shellac Polish System, manicures and pedicures. We are the only salon in Batavia that has an airplane chair for kids' cuts! Hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday. We have a $20 gift certificate for $7.

Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew, 9 Main St., Le Roy, NY. The kind of downhome, laid-back and comfortable place that just feels right. Open daily for lunch, dinner and drinks, this eatery and bar features a variety of eats and drinks that are outstanding. Specializing in smoked meats -- each meat is dry rubbed with a proprietary mix of seasonings, then smoked slowly in their on-site smoker for maximum flavor and tenderness. With a variety of appetizers, burgers, sandwiches, wraps, combo platters and entrées, there's always plenty of choice for even picky eaters. Great food, frosty brews and some of the best folk around call the Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew their favorite -- make it your favorite today! Don't forget to ask about our catering! We have a $20 gift card for $12.

Santino's Pizza, 2 Main St., Oakfield, NY: We're pizza and a whole lot more! Voted #1 pizza in Genesee County in blind taste test! Santino's features pizza, wings, subs, wraps, ice cream, and more! We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Larry's Steakhouse for lunch, 60 Main St., Batavia, NY: The name says it all -- Larry's is a great place for steak. Larry's has a fine dining atmosphere with a great menu and outstanding service. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10. Valid only for lunch, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Alli's Cones & Dogs, 7063 Lewiston Road, Oakfield, NY: Full breakfast, lunch and dinner menu; all-you-can-eat salad bar; ice cream served year-round; eat-in or take-out. We have a $20 gift certificate for $8.

Bourbon & Burger Co., 9 Jackson St., Batavia, NY: Batavia's newest burger joint offers more than two dozen different types of tasty hamburgers. Our menu also includes a variety of sandwiches, appetizers and an extensive beer list, plus a full bar. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle, 8 Center St., Batavia, NY: Feel like a kid in a toy store again, or treat your kids to the greatest toy store they will ever see. We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50.

The Rack Shack, 4974 Ellicott Street Road, Batavia, NY: Genesee County's newest BBQ restaurant offers a varied menu that ranges from tender, tasty slow-cooked BBQ ribs and smoky beef brisket to Cajun catfish, ribeye steaks, burgers and wraps. Family owned and operated, the atmosphere is warm and comfortable, and the meats are smoked on-site. The homemade BBQ sauce is “sweet with a spicy kick.” Sides include authentic Southern-style collard greens, 5-bean chuck wagon beans with bacon and ground meat, mac ‘n’ cheese, tater tots and more. Catering available. Dine in, take out, phone in (585-201-7077). Hours are Tuesday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sunday 9 to 7, closed Monday. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Scooter's, 140 W. Main Street Road (Route 5), Le Roy, NY: Come see us at Scooter's family restaurant with our friendly atmosphere and homestyle cooking! We offer classic American food with breakfast, lunch and dinner served all day. We also offer a full take-out menu anytime. We have a $10 gift certificate for $4.

O'Lacy's Irish Pub, 5 School St., Batavia, NY: In Irish pubs, it doesn't get more authentic than O'Lacy's. Be sure to try the homemade chips. We have a $25 gift certificate for $15.

Batavia's Original, 500 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: First established in 1947, this Batavia landmark pizzeria reopened as Batavia's Original in 2010, serving up delicious Neopolitan tomato pies that have had satisfied generations. We offer regular and New York-style thin crust pizza, plus Chicago deep dish and gluten-free. We have "tray," white, sweet, or white ricotta sauce. Choose from two dozen toppings, including pulled pork, carmelized onions, steak and spinach! Enjoy specialty pizzas, too, like Sienna, Steak-in-the-Grass or bacon/chicken/ranch. Our menu also includes calzones, appetizers (like deep-fried pickles, garlic knots, Hodge Podge), wings, salads, wraps and cannolis. All subs are toasted. Weekday Express Lunch combo meals (11 a.m. to 2 p.m.). A $9.99 Sunday lunch buffet is offered from 11 to 3. Patio dining, catering, delivery. Hours are: Sunday & Monday 11 to 9; Tuesday & Thursday 11 to 10; and Friday & Saturday 11 to 11. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Sweet Pea’s Cupcakery Café, 23 Jackson St., Batavia, NY. We are a full-service Cupcake Bakery and Café. Now serving fresh-baked artisan pizza for lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday thru Friday! Treat yourself to a variety of baked goods, mainly varieties of specialty and traditional scratch-made cupcakes, as well as other bakery items like cookies and brownies. We also serve a variety of hot and cold beverages. Check out our location, or place an order for parties, gatherings or any other reasons you can think of to enjoy some cupcakes. We have a $10 gift card for $4.

T.F. Brown's, 214 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: T.F. Brown's is a great place for a good meal, good friends and to catch up on what's going on in the sports world. "If it happens in sports, it happens at Brown's."  Stop in and check out our Jumbo Chicken Wings, Roast Beef on Weck and Friday night fish fry. The original family spaghetti sauce still adorns all of our Italian specialties. The other popular selections from our menu range from Super Salads, butcher cut Strip Loin and South of the Border items. We offer daily lunch and dinner specials as well as a full adult and children’s menu. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Ficarella's Pizzeria, 21 Liberty St., Batavia, NY: Dine-in, drive-thru or delivery. Featuring fresh, hearth-baked pizza since 1985, plus wings, pasta and more. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12. (Good only at the Batavia location.)

Mooney's Sports Bar & Grill, 65 Lake St., Le Roy, NY: "Not Your Average Sports Bar!" This place is Home of the Mac N' Cheese, an All-American favorite with nine kinds to choose from. Plus, monster 1/2-lb. burgers, huge tacos, pizza, wings, fingers, wraps, soups, salads, appetizers (including deep-fried pickles), a variety of grilled cheese sandwiches, seafood, and plenty more. Mooney's has a fun, welcoming atmosphere where you can enjoy watching your favorite teams. Endless soda pop, great selection of ice-cold beer. Open daily from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Catering available. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Center Street Smoke House, 20 Center St., Batavia, NY: Authentic Southern BBQ, from ribs to brisket with all the fixin's. We have a $20 gift card for $12.

RULES

[Last updated June 6, 2014. Subject to change without notice.]

A $1 PayPal service fee applies on items more than $10. The fee is 50 cents on items $10 and below.

Rules: The gift certificate must be used by within 30 days of purchase, unless it states otherwise. It is not valid with other offers, has no cash value, and does not include gratuities. Only one gift certificate per-merchant, per-household every SIX months. Gift certificates cannot be combined with other offers without prior approval of the merchant. Gift certificates bought separately cannot be combined for a single purchase. Individuals buying gift certificates must use their own personal PayPal account for the purchase. For hair salons, good for services only, not products.

How to Win: Purchase using the PayPal "Buy Now" button below. After the first person to hit the "buy now" button completes the purchase, PayPal will let you know that the item has been sold. Unless other arrangements are made immediately after purchase, the gift certificate will mailed to the winner at his or her PayPal-provided postal address within two or three days of purchase.

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Sunday, March 15, 2015 at 2:32 pm

Sabres capture 2015 Men's League Championship

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, hockey, Men's Hockey League, sports

The Buffalo Sabres have yet to win a Stanley Cup, but the Batavia Sabres can now enjoy some championship swag after capturing the Genesee County title this morning at Falleti Ice Arena in a 4-1 win over the Wild.

MVP Rich Pearson

Team Captain Mike Koch

To purchase prints, click here.

Sunday, March 15, 2015 at 9:13 am

Photos: Cheer-a-Thon raises money for family of 4-year-old with leukemia

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia

Photos by Jim Burns.

The family of Emma Harris, a Jackson School student battling leukemia, received an outpouring of community support Saturday evening during a Cheer-a-Thon held at Batavia High School.

Above, Laurie Napoleone and board members from the Michael Napoleone Memorial Foundation, present a $1,000 check to Emma's aunt.

Below, the Marine is Emma's cousin.

Sunday, March 15, 2015 at 8:56 am

Photos: All-County Music Festival showcase held in Attica

post by Howard B. Owens in arts, Attica, entertainment, music

Photos by Jim Burns.

The first of two All-County Music Festival concerts was held Saturday in Attica, with student musicians from throughout Genesee and Wyoming counties participating.

The concert is the culmination of a lot of hard work by students, including an audition process that also contributes to the grades of many students in music classes.

The next show is at 2 p.m., Saturday, at Batavia Middle School. Tickets are $4 at the door.

Saturday, March 14, 2015 at 4:45 pm

Photos: 3rd Annual Collin Crane hockey tournament

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, collin crane, hockey, sports

Photos by Jim Burns.

The Batavia Ramparts held their 3rd annual Collin Crane Memorial Hockey Tournament this morning at Falleti Ice Arena, with all proceeds benefiting the Collin Crane Memorial Scholarship fund.

Collin was an avid hockey player who died in an auto accident in December of 2012.

The event included three hockey games, an open skate, pizza, hotdogs and drinks along with prizes, an auction and raffle.

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