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Billie Owens's blog

Wednesday, September 3, 2014 at 11:32 am

Meet the county's new historian at HLOM's annual Chicken-n-Biscuit Luncheon

post by Billie Owens in announcements, hlom

The annual Chicken-n-Biscuit Luncheon will be presented by the Holland Land Office Museum on Tuesday, Sept. 23rd at noon at the Genesee County Office for the Aging, 2 Bank St., Batavia.

Meet the new Genesee County Historian, Michael Eula, who will speak on “Genesee County, the Holland Land Company, and the fabric of American History."

Tickets are $10 per person for lunch catered by the D&R Depot Restaurant & Catering. Please call the Holland Land Office Museum for tickets and more information at 585-343-472. Everyone is welcome.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014 at 11:23 am

Drew Monti wins annual Batavia Downs bike race

post by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, bike race, sports

Drew Monti edges out the competition at annual driver's bike race at Batavia Downs.

By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs

What has been the tradition on Labor Day at Batavia Downs since 1979, a renewal of the annual driver’s bike race took place on Monday (Sept. 1) with a full field of eight local reinsmen lining up to compete.

Among the contestants were two-time winner Denny Bucceri and last year’s winner Mickey Holliday. But it was newcomer Drew Monti who got the job done at the wire.

The starting car picked up the field at the top of the far turn and let them go at the head of the stretch for the one-eighth mile dash. As the pack got away from the gate, the bunched group began to break apart and Holliday found himself in a familiar spot; in front. But Monti was gaining momentum from sixth on the far outside. As they approached the wire, Holliday had a two-length open lead but Monti was flying down the track. Just before the finish, Holliday appeared to lose his rhythm and slowed just enough for the now motoring Monti to fly by him to win the race by a head.

After the race, the bikes were given away via random drawing to eight lucky fans from all who correctly selected Monti to win before the event.

Also on Monday afternoon, driver Kevin Cummings had a hot hand, winning five races on the card. He piloted Cheshire Cat ($4.60), Tsunami Dream ($6.20), Union Man Hanover ($2.70), Mr. Casual ($6.70) and The Manipulator ($14.40) to the winners circle. Dave McNeight III was right behind him with a driving triple steering Jon Win ($4.40), Kisses N Kicks ($3.30) and Tip N Go ($3.90) to victory.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 6:22 pm

Today's Deals: Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew, Alli's Cones & Dogs, Spirits, and more!

post by Billie Owens in Deal of the Day

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.

Sweet Ecstasy Bakery & Bistro, 201 E. Main St., Batavia, NY. A retail and special-order bakery and cafe located in Downtown Batavia inside Seymour Place. Offering a wide variety of items such as cookies, filled cupcakes, quick breads, pies, breakfast pastries, daily. On Fridays, it offers fresh artisan bread like baguettes, sourdough and rye starting at noon. The custom cakes are out of this world with 3D characters or gorgeous wedding cakes to suit any budget. For all your sweet treats, we have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

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 $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 on Friday nights! We offer soft-serve ice cream, too! 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 $6.

$$$  Spirits, 78 Lake St., Le Roy, NY. Le Roy's favorite sports bar, where fun and good food are always on tap. Come try one of our many delicious burgers that we have to offer, as well as our HUGE Bomber Sandwich, homemade chicken fingers made to order, and the all-time favorite Dumpster Plate with many choices. We deliver. We have a $20 gift certificate for $8.

Spirits

Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew

Alli's Cones & Dogs

Sweet Ecstasy

Sweet Pea's Cupcakery Cafe

 

Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 6:08 pm

Law and Order: Le Roy man accused of illegal entry into neighbor's apartment

post by Billie Owens in batavia, crime, Le Roy

Thomas A. Gorrow III, 23, of 59 Mill St., rear apt., Le Roy, was arrested based on a complaint from last evening (9/1/2014) that he allegedly unlawfully entered a neighbor’s apartment and while inside damaged both a stove and a window. Gorrow was initially taken into custody by the Le Roy Police Department under section 9.41 of the Mental Hygiene Law and transported by ambulance to a hospital for evaluation, but allegedly left the hospital without the medical staff’s knowledge and/or permission. Gorrow was located at work and arrested by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with one count each of burglary, 2nd, a Class C felony, and criminal mischief, 3rd, a Class E felony. Gorrow was arraigned before the Hon. D. Sehm of the Le Roy Town Court and released under the supervision of Genesee Justice.

Roberto Varona-Gonzalez, 57, of Clifford Avenue, Rochester, is charged with evading or defeating cigarette tax. It is alleged that he possessed 31 cartons of cigarettes or 6,200 cigarettes following a traffic stop on Bank Street Road in the Town of Byron. He was issued an appearance ticket and is to appear in Byron Town Court at 5 p.m. on Sept. 22.

Thomas A. Webb, 54, of Gifford Street, Syracuse, is charged with criminal possession of a forged instrument, 2nd, and grand larceny, 4th. He was arrested on the charges after allegedly cashing a forged check at a bank. The investigation was  conducted in coordination with the Le Roy Police Department. Webb was arraigned in Batavia City Court and put then put into Genesee County Jail in lieu of $10,000 bail. He is set to appear back in court at 11 a.m. on Sept. 11.

Joshua Lee Baltz, 38, of West Main Street, Batavia, is accused of first-degree criminal contempt. He was arrested for allegedly making phone calls from the county jail on Aug. 30 to a protected person, in violation of a stay-away order of protection.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 1:47 pm

Back porch reported to be on fire on Ross Street in the city

post by Billie Owens in batavia, fire

The back porch of the residence at 249 Ross St. is reportedly on fire. The blaze was called in to dispatch by a neighbor who is unsure if the house is occupied. City fire just arrived and there's no smoke showing.

UPDATE 1:49 p.m.: Command reports smoke is showing from the rear of the wood frame structure.

UPDATE 1:51 p.m.: Command says the fire is in a wall and is "out of control."

UPDATE 1:52 p.m.: Dispatch has made contact with the homeowner who returning home now.

UPDATE 2:09 p.m.: Fire is out. Firefighters are picking up and preparing to leave the scene.

UPDATE (by Howard): An alert neighbor and quick response by City Fire is probably what saved this house. Damage to the back porch, railing, eaves and smoke damage along the back of the house, showing it was minutes, if not seconds, from spreading extensively before it was put out.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 12:52 pm

GC Youth Court recruiting new members

post by Billie Owens in youth court

Press release:

Calling all eighth- through 11th-graders, the Genesee County Youth Court is recruiting new members! Applications are due by the middle of September to 2 Bank St., Batavia.

Youth Court is a voluntary alternative for young people who face disciplinary action through school or law enforcement. Youth who are referred admit to the charge and appear before a court of their peers. Three youth judges listen to both sides of the issue and determine an appropriate disposition.

The goal of youth court is to improve youth citizenship skills and decrease problematic behavior.

Youth Court members learn about the judicial process and law enforcement; develop group decision making, leadership and public speaking skills; participate in all roles of the courtroom -- judge, prosecution, defense and bailiff.

County eighth- through 11th-graders who are interested can go online to download an application from the Web site <http://www.co.genesee.ny.us> where you will find a link on the Youth Bureau page.

Interviews of potential candidates will take place during early fall with the training to begin in October. For more information on the Genesee County Youth Court, please contact Chelsea Dillon at the Genesee County Youth Bureau, 344-3960.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 11:38 am

Two drivers injured in Batavia Downs accident

post by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, harness racing, sports

Press release:

By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs

An unfortunate chain-reaction mishap occurred at the start of the third race at Batavia Downs on Monday (Sept.1) that sent two drivers to the hospital.

When the gate pulled away at the start of the race, driver Chris Long tried to go to the front with pacer Shakin In My Shoes from post five when the horse took a bad step and fell, throwing Long to the track. Following behind him was Shawn McDonough driving Police Car, who then appeared to run over Long, dumping McDonough out of his bike and to the track. Then while on the track, McDonough appeared to be run over by the sulky wheel of another trailing horse, Flight Crew driven by Jim McNeight.

At this point there were two drivers on the track, one horse down and another horse (McDonough’s) running loose without a driver. As horsemen and medical personnel ran to the aid of the fallen, the other drivers pulled out wide on the second lap to avoid the incident at the rail. However the loose horse did not follow suit and instead skirted the pylons, then jumped over the still down McDonough. The jump then caused that horse to fall himself.

The race was declared a “no contest” by the judges at the three-quarter pole and broadcast as such over the public address system by track announcer Joe Zambito who then immediately instructed the remaining drivers to pull up their horses before they finished the race. All wagers made on the race were refunded.

Shawn McDonough was transported to the Erie County Medical Center where he was examined and determined to have a slight concussion but no broken bones. Chris Long was taken to United Memorial Medical Center in Batavia where he was found to have a collapsed lung and possible fractures to the ribs and hip. Both drivers remained in the hospital pending further examination.

Shakin In My Shoes and Police Car, the two horses that went down, both came out of the incident with only a couple minor abrasions.

McDonough is 23 years old and is a regular at Batavia Downs. He is one of the up and coming young drivers in the sport and in his short career has steered 395 winners that have earned over $2 million in purses. He was the leading dash driver at the Downs last year and is currently second for this meet.

Long is 46 and has been driving at Saratoga Raceway and Plainridge Racecourse in Massachusetts. He just started driving at Batavia Downs last week. During his career he has teamed 3,198 winners and amassed purses totaling over $9 million.

Any further updates will be released as they become available.

Monday, September 1, 2014 at 5:34 pm

Car vs. bicycle accident with injuries at Bank and Washington in the city

post by Billie Owens in batavia, accidents

A car vs. bicycle accident with injuries is reported at Bank Street and Washington Avenue. City fire and Mercy medics are responding.

UPDATE 5:42 p.m.: The assignment is back in service.

Monday, September 1, 2014 at 10:41 am

Muckdogs, Marlins extend affiliation agreement through 2016

post by Billie Owens in Batavia Muckdogs, sports

Press release:

The Batavia Muckdogs and Miami Marlins have announced a two-year extension of their Player Development Contract through at least the 2016 season. A joint announcement was made by Marlins Farm Director Brian Chattin and Brian Paris, President of the Genesee County Baseball Club, the not-for-profit that owns the Batavia Muckdogs Franchise.

“The Genesee County Baseball Club is pleased to announce that we will be extending our working relationship with the Miami Marlins for two more years," said Brian Paris, president of GCBC.

"The Marlins have proven to be a great organization that brings with them solid baseball experience and good people. They've been a first class organization to work with and we’re fortunate to have them as our affiliate in Batavia. On behalf of the entire community and the Genesee County Baseball Club, we are anxious to get started with another year of professional baseball in Batavia."

Naomi Silver, president and CEO of Red Wings Management, LLC, the company which has managed the Muckdogs since 2008, said “We’re very pleased to see the working relationship between Batavia and the Miami Marlins extended.

"The Marlins have done everything a Minor League franchise could hope for in an affiliation. They also understand how important small town Minor League Baseball is to the Batavia Community and they deserve a lot of credit for providing the baseball fans of Batavia with extremely talented young players."
 
Brian Chattin of the Marlins said "The Miami Marlins are very excited to continue with our affiliation with the Batavia Muckdogs. With its rich baseball history, supportive front office and loyal fan base, Batavia is an ideal place for our players and staff to call home each summer. The Marlins are proud to have Batavia as our player development partner and look forward to a long and productive partnership together."

The Muckdogs are one of seven affiliates in the Marlins’ player development system, along with the New Orleans Zephyrs (AAA/Pacific Coast League), Jacksonville Suns (AA/Southern League), Jupiter Hammerheads (Advanced A/Florida State League), Greensboro Grasshoppers (A/South Atlantic League), Dominican Summer League Marlins (Rookie) and Gulf Coast League Marlins (Rookie).

Monday, September 1, 2014 at 10:27 am

Ken Doll J upsets in NYSS action at Batavia Downs

post by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, harness racing, sports

Upset victor Ken Doll J breaks ahead with driver Aaron Byron.

By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs

It was bombs-away at Batavia Downs Sunday (Aug. 31) when the heavily favored Major Dancer came up just short at the wire as 40-1 Ken Doll J pulled the surprise in a $39,900 division of the New York Sire Stakes for 3-year-old pacing fillies.

Off the gate Sweetnsinful (Jimmy Whittemore) took an uncontested lead around the turn and up the backside before the 1-2 Major Dancer (Jonathan Drury) rushed and took over the top as they hit the quarter in :27.1. After a pedestrian second split of :30.1, Table Talk (Jim Morrill Jr.) started the outer flow and Ken Doll J (Aaron Byron) followed in swift fashion.

Feeling the heat, Drury stepped on the gas and tried to pull away to the three-quarters with a :28 flat third panel. But the strategy was ineffective as the chasing pair continued to make up ground through the turn and into the stretch. From that point on it was a real horse race with a tiring Major Dancer coming back to Table Talk, who was outside of her and Ken Doll J, who was three-wide. When they hit the wire, Ken Doll J just got up in the final stride to win in 1:54 and light up the board. The winner paid $83.00.

Table Talk was second and Major Dancer hung on to be third.

This was the second win of the year for Ken Doll J (Bettor’s Delight-Normajeankillean) and also a seasonal mark. The victory brought her earnings up to $74,882 for owner Ken Jacobs. Ken Doll J is trained by Linda Toscano.

After the race, Byron said “Everything just worked out. I got a great trip and I didn't really have to do much to half. The filly was real good down the lane.”

Just Add Vodka pulls away to victory with driver Jim Morrill Jr.

In the first $39,900 division, Just Add Vodka (Jim Morrill Jr.) was the beneficiary of a patient steer and came away with a three-quarter length victory as a result.

Up Front Elizabeth (Mark MacDonald) flew off the wings and led the field through a quick and gapped :27 quarter in post-position order. The story remained the same to the half in :56.3 when Carlota Blue Chip (Jack Flanigen) pulled and tried to apply some heat. She was only able to get up to third on the outside before stalling with two other horses behind her at the three-quarters in 1:25.

When the outer flow faded around the last turn it allowed the rail-riding Barefoot Beauty (Jimmy Whittemore) to come off the pylons and that in turn left a spot for Just Add Vodka (Jim Morrill Jr.) to shoot up inside. At the head of the stretch, the bearing-out Up Front Elizabeth was in the middle with Barefoot Beauty to her right and Just Add Vodka to her left. The three battled to the wire with Just Add Vodka getting the advantage at the end to win by three-quarters of a length in 1:54.2.

Barefoot Beauty was second and Up Front Elizabeth was third.

It was the third win of the year for the Julie Miller trained filly that also happened to be a new lifetime mark. The victory boosted the seasonal earnings of Just Add Vodka (Art Major-Regal Wish) to $94,233 for owners Blue Chip Bloodstock, Inc., Steven Demeter, Herbert Burns III and Nahuel Agosti.

Morrill praised both the horse and trainer saying “I can't believe how much better she was today. Julie did a great job getting her ready.”

Spreester with driver Jason Bartlett

In the second $39,200 split, Spreester (Jason Bartlett) made quick work of a short field and two breaking horses to register a five-length romp in the fastest of the three divisions.

As the field went into the first turn, Delightful Dragon (Mark MacDonald) made an uncharacteristic break and watched as the rest of the field pulled away. Sky Artist (Kevin Cummings) was on the point but Medusa (Aaron Byron) was pushing the issue outside at the quarter in :26.4. But Medusa appeared to get foul-gaited and Byron took her back to the wood fourth. Then Blush Hanover (Jim Morrill Jr.) pulled from second to challenge but also made a break before the half in :56.1.

So with two of the three favorite guilty of miscues, Spreester, who had been sitting second through it all, pulled past the five-eighths, circled and cleared the leader before they hit the three-quarter pole in 1:25.3. When she got back to the pylons, Bartlett popped the plugs and became a passenger as Spreester shifted gears and simply paced away from everybody. She hit the wire a five-length wrapped-up winner in 1:53.3. The winner paid $5.60 to her supporters.

Delightful Dragon recovered from the early break to be second and Sky Artist hung on for third.

This was the sixth win in 14 starts for Spreester (American Ideal-Rodeo Spree) and the Paul Zabielski trained filly topped off her bank at $134,680. Spreester is owned by Kimberly Zabielski.

Bartlett commented “I really didn't want to sit in the two-hole but they kept blowing up around me. She just exploded down the lane.”

The results of today’s NYSS contests were important in the point’s standings leading into the Night of Champions finals. Spreester took over the top spot, Just Add Vodka moved from fifth to third and Ken Doll J vaulted herself from 12th to seventh.

There was also an Excelsior leg contested and was won by Expose who was driven by Jim Morrill Jr. in 1:56.3. The winner paid $6.80. Expose is trained by Linda Toscano and is owned by Linwood Higgins, Stake Your Claim Stable, Brittany Farms and Val D’Or Farms.

Driver Jim Morrill Jr. registered a four-win afternoon and Mark MacDonald scored a double.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs today (Sept. 1) with a special Labor Day matinee card slated to start at 1:15.

Monday, September 1, 2014 at 9:52 am

Car wreck on Broadway Road with minor injuries

post by Billie Owens in accidents, Bethany

A motor vehicle accident is reported at 5563 Broadway Road. Injuries are minor. Bethany Fire Department is responding.

Sunday, August 31, 2014 at 1:39 pm

Best Ears made himself heard in Batavia Downs feature

post by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, harness racing, sports

Best Ears and driver Jack Flanigen

By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs

With an eighth of a mile to go, two lengths separated the seven horses that competed in Saturday night’s (Aug. 30) $9,500 Open pace at Batavia Downs and the final result came down to the wire. But when they crossed the line, Best Ears used his head as the margin of victory in the night’s feature race.

When the man said go in the seventh race, Big Unit (Kevin Cummings) bolted from post two and took an immediate lead off the gate. Best Ears (Jack Flanigen) left from the four hole and was parked, but methodically worked his way towards the leader through a :27.3 first quarter. After not being able to take control at the point, Flanigen tucked Best Ears in second behind the hard-rolling leader before the pack hit the half in 55.3.

Then Ready To Work (Jim McNeight) came barreling from behind to take his shot at the top. He led a dull outer flow to the three-quarters in 1:25 before actually drawing near the leader. As they started to bunch around the far turn, Burton Blue Chip (Lee Dahn) swung three-deep around Ready To Work and Best Ears was sitting cool in the pocket behind Big Unit. But Big Unit fell victim to his own fast pace at the head of the lane and started to fade. When they headed down the stretch, Ready To Work took over the lead before Best Ears found the passing lane and shot through in time to win by a head in 1:55. The post time favorite returned $3.40.

Ready To Work was second and Burton Blue Chip was third.

It was the sixth win in 29 starts for Best Ears who now has a total of $42,017 earned for 2014. The 5-year-old Shark Gesture gelding is trained by Frank Mastrodonato for owners Joe Amico and Joe Amico Jr.

Editor's Note: Racing is under way now, Aug. 31; it started at 1:15. The card features three divisions of the New York Sire Stakes for 3-year-old pacing fillies.

Saturday, August 30, 2014 at 12:37 pm

Grand Jury indictments: Man accused of second-degree assault for allegedly injuring victim with scalding water

post by Billie Owens in batavia, bergen, byron, crime

These are the latest indictments issued by the Genesee County Grand Jury.

James T. Saddler III is indicted on a charge of second-degree assault, a Class D violent felony. It is alleged that on Nov. 21 in the City of Batavia, with intent to cause physical injury to another person, he caused such injury by means of a dangerous instrument -- scalding water.

Ronnie R. Simpson is indicted on a charge of aggravated driving while ability impaired by drugs, a Class E felony. It is alleged that on March 29 in the Town of Byron Simpson drove a 2001 Chevrolet on Route 262 while his ability to do so was impaired by drugs and while a child age 15 or less was a passenger.

Kassandra R. Funk is indicted on a change of drving while intoxicated, a Class E felony. It is alleged that on May 6 in the Town of Bergen Funk drove a 2006 Pontiac on North Bergen Road while in an intoxicated condition. In count two, she is accused of aggravated drving while intoxicated, per se, as a Class E felony, for allegedly having a BAC of .18 or more at the time.

Saturday, August 30, 2014 at 12:22 pm

Batavia Downs hosts New York Sire Stakes Sunday

post by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, harness racing, sports

By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs

On Sunday afternoon (Aug. 31) the New York Sire Stakes 3-year-old pacing fillies come to town to compete for their cut of $119,000 in purses.

The group is highlighted by Major Dancer (Art Major-Two Steppin’ Sally), who is currently the fourth highest money earning 3-year-old pacing filly in North America with $201,644 in the bank. She is a seven-time winner in 12 attempts and has only finished out of the money once this year. She won the $46,248 Town Pro stake at Mohawk Raceway earlier this year in her lifetime best time of 1:51.2 as well as an elimination of the Empire Breeders Classic at Tioga Downs in 1:51.4. She finished second in the $244,875 final to Precocious Beauty in a 1:51.1 mile.

Major Dancer will be driven by Jonathan Drury for trainer Casie Coleman. She is listed as the 8-5 morning line favorite in the third $39,900 NYSS division carded as the eighth race that also features A La Notte Hanover driven by Matt Kakaley and Table Talk with Jim Morrill Jr. at the lines.

A La Notte Hanover (Art Major-All Night Long) starts for the powerful Ron Burke stable and is a two-time winner in 2014. She won her last outing at Yonkers in NYSS action with an impressive 1:55 wire-to-wire victory that brought her bankroll up to $87,733 for the year. She also competed in the Empire Breeders Classic and finished close despite having a lot of traffic to deal with in both of those races.

Table Talk (Bettor’s Delight-Place At The Table) took an early seasons mark of 1:51.4 at Mohawk and has competed in the $420,900 Fan Hanover Stake and $212,150 Mistletoe Shallee where she paced back-to-back 1:49 miles for driver Tim Tetrick. She has been plagued with some bad posts and a breaking issue of late but looks to be in a good spot here for trainer Brad Dalious.

In the first $39,900 division carded as the fourth race, Ron Burke and Julie Miller have the one-two punch going to post. Burke sends out Jaded Dream and Miller counters with Just Add Vodka.

Jaded Dream (If I Can Dream-Jaded Gal) put forth a handy effort at Yonkers in her last, winning a NYSS leg there in 1:54.4. It <http://54.4.it/> was a welcome sight after a series of poor post draws and the resulting tough trips. She has three wins in 13 starts and $62,586 in the bank. Matt Kakaley is back in the bike behind her for the first time since June 18.

Just Add Vodka (Art Major-Regal Wish) only has two wins this year but has been consistently in the money; 13 out of 16 starts and that made her $74,283 for the year. Her mark of 1:55.3 was at Monticello but she has paced considerably faster than that in defeat on several occasions. Jim Morrill Jr. who has driven her several times over the summer gets the assignment.

The second $39,200 division which goes as the seventh race has three very tough competitors going post-ward and looks to be the most closely contested event. It features the first, second and fourth leading points leaders for this sex and gait in the NYSS this year.

Blush Hanover (Art Major-Brissonte Hanover) currently tops the leader board and comes into this race sporting five 2014 wins for trainer Linda Toscano. She finished a strong third in the Empire Breeders Classic final after a very rough parked-out trip. She has a 1:52 mark at the Meadowlands and has only failed to hit the board once out of 14 starts this year. Her $168,831 in earnings is tops in this field and she looks to add to that total in here with Jim Morrill Jr. at the helm.

Spreester (American Ideal-Rodeo Spree) is second in points despite also having recorded five victories. This filly can race on the front or from behind and that versatility makes her a formidable foe. Her $115,080 in earnings is also second highest in the field and driver Jason Bartlett who has driven this filly twice before with winning outcomes, opted to driver her today for trainer Paul Zabielski after having been down to steer two horses in this same race.

Medusa (Bettor’s Delight-Mythical) ranks fourth in points among the group but is not that far behind the leaders. She has seven wins in 14 starts and $102,723 stashed away. The Paul Kelley trainee has a lifetime mark of 1:51.2 at Vernon Downs and also had two good efforts in the Empire Breeders Classic races. Tioga Downs regular Aaron Byron gets the drive tonight from Tim Tetrick who had been at the lines for her last three starts.

Post time for Sunday's races is 1:15.

Batavia Downs also has a special Labor Day matinee 12-race card on tap for Monday (Sept. 1) with a 1:15 post.

Saturday, August 30, 2014 at 7:54 am

One-vehicle rollover accident with entrapment in Byron

post by Billie Owens in accidents, byron

A one-vehicle rollover accident with entrapment is reported at Route 262 and Bank Street Road.

Byron and South Byron fire departments and Mercy medics are responding. Mercy Flight is on ground standby.

UPDATE 7:58 a.m.: The driver managed to get out of the vehicle. There is no need for Mercy Flight; the standby is canceled.

UPDATE 8:02 a.m.: Command says responders heading to the scene can come in non-emergency mode. A flatbed tow is called. The vehicle is on its roof about 40 feet off the roadway. It is reported that the accident occurred at about 4:30 a.m..

UPDATE 8:06 a.m.: Command put Mercy medics back in service.

UPDATE 8:46 a.m.: South Byron back in service.

Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 9:37 pm

BBQ grill next to garage said to be out of control on North Street in the city

post by Billie Owens in batavia, fire

A BBQ grill out of control is reported at 106 North St. in the city. It's close to a garage. City fire is responding.

UPDATE 9:40 p.m.: Command reports the fire is within city code. The city assignment is back in service.

Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 6:23 pm

Sports Plus Physical Therapy is ready to ease your aches and pains in a hands-on way

From left, Stephanie Starkweather, Keith Bailey, Senator Mike Ranzenhofer, Patrick Privatera, Craig Rigney and Assemblyman Steve Hawley.

 

Sports Plus Physical Therapy is having its Open House and Grand Opening Celebration this afternoon at 5 Alva Place, Batavia. It ends at 7.

Keith Bailey, a physical therapist and the clinic's director, said the goal of the staff is to get their hands on every client.

"We treat primarily musculoskeletal conditions -- anything from sprains and strains to post-operative rehabilitation," Bailey said. "We do work with some neurological patients, such as people who've had a stroke, but we typically get them further down the road, not in the immediate sense.

"We'll work with feet, ankles, knees, hips, spine, shoulders, elbows, hands, we'll take care of just about any of it for you. We treat all ages. We have the very young up to the very old, and a lot in between. We have some young athletes, but I would say the bulk of our clientele is the Baby Boomer, middle-age generation. Nowadays, people expect to stay active and energetic longer than in the past. We try our best to help them achieve their goal."

On the first visit, a patient is taken to a private examination room for an evaluation and assessment. Measurements, such as range of motion, are taken, any sensory loss is also noted, so the clinician has a baseline to chart a course of therapy and its progression.

For example, "You think it's a shoulder pain," Bailey said. "Well maybe we can narrow it down and that gives us a more focused path to treatment."

On subsequent visits, the patient will go to gym area where there are tables to stretch out on and exercise equipment, ice packs, hot packs, and ultrasound machines to calm inflammation and promote healing.

"But the most important thing is -- we try to get our hands on every client," Bailey said, "which means, you come in, maybe we'll do some modalities; we're definately going to do some exercises. But we're also going to use our hands to try help you to achieve your goals, now whatever that may be -- it's different for different people.

"Maybe we'll work on joint restrictions or muscular issues or sometimes just help you to perform an exercise properly. We make sure when you come in here you're having an interaction with a therapist, not just going through a routine."

A patient can be seen with or without a doctor's referral. In New York, direct access is allowed up to 10 visits or up to 30 days of treatment, without a doctor's referral. Further treatment does requires a referral. No-fault insurance, Medicare, and Workers' Comp don't allow direct access to physical therapy.

Sports Plus Physical Therapy is open daily, including Monday and Wednesday evenings. Most insurance plans are accepted. To make an appointment or ask questions, call 343-9496.

The business is a new member of the Downtown Batavia Improvement District, but it is not new. It's been in Batavia since the 1990s and when Le Roy Physical Therapy bought the business 2009, they leased space near Batavia Downs.

With that lease about to expire, the business owners decided to look for a more centrally located facility. They found it at what used to be the Genesee County ARC administrative office building, at the corner of Alva Place and State Street.

"It's a nice central, more accessible location," Bailey said. "So we bought the building. It took a lot of doing to get it where we needed it to be, and we're pretty happy with how it's turned out."

Photo by Howard Owens.

Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 4:59 pm

Sassa Hanover smashes track record; Morrill sweeps NYSS at Batavia Downs

post by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, harness racing, sports

Sassa Hanover driven by Jim Morrill Jr.

By Tim Bojarski for Batavia Downs

There was a lot of action on Wednesday night (Aug. 27) at Batavia Downs and as the New York Sire Stakes headlined the racing, both man and beast were in top form.

The Ron Burke trained Sassa Hanover (Rock N Roll Heaven-Sayo Hanover) rewrote the record books when she toured the facility in a blistering 1:54.2, erasing the old mark of 1:54.4 for a 2-year-old pacing filly set by Barefoot Beauty just last year. This was the fourth track record set at Batavia Downs in 2014.

Jim Morrill Jr. left the gate with Sassa Hanover from post five in the $35,867 division and dropped in third behind the early leader Devil Child (Jimmy Whittemore) and the pocket sitting Yes You Can (Mike Whelan). But when they headed up the backside for the first time, Morrill quickly came out and overtook the leader by the quarter in :28.1 and at that point, the race was over.

Sassa Hanover got to the half in :57.1 and the three-quarters in 1:26.2 and from there her only adversary was the clock. Morrill popped the plugs past the last station and the slick-gaited filly paced her hips off down the lane in a :28 flat last quarter and the record breaking final time of 1:54.2. Sassa Hanover paid $2.10 for the win.

Devil Child (American Ideal-Kattimon) was second and Yes You Can (If I Can Dream-Cantbuymehappiness) was third.

This was the fifth win in six starts for Sassa Hanover and it boosted her bank account to $125,992 for owners Burke Racing Stable LLC, The Panhellenic Stable Corp, Weaver Bruscemi LLC and Lawrence Karr.

Mosquito Blue Chip driven by Jim Morrill Jr.

In the first $35,167 division, Mosquito Blue Chip (Bettor’s Delight-Sandfly Hanover) made it two in a row for trainer Paul Jessop and driver Jim Morrill Jr. but not without a tenuous ending.

My Little Delight (Mark MacDonald) left swiftly in the four horse field and spearheaded fractions of :27.4, :58.2 and 1:28.4. But the action picked up at the three-quarters when Pop The Tags (Brent Holland) came with a rush to challenge the front running filly around the turn and down the stretch. However when the rail opened up as the group straightened out, Mosquito Blue Chip buzzed through the gap and nipped the leader at the wire by a half-length in 1:56.3. The heavy 2-5 favorite returned $2.80 for the win.

My Little Delight (Bettor’s Delight-My Little Dragon) was second and Pop The Tags (Bettor’s Delight-Breathe) was third.

It was the second win in seven starts for Mosquito Blue Chip, pushing her annual income to $101,302 for owners Our Three Sons Stable LLC, Donato Falchicchio and Paul Jessop.

Bettor N Better driven by Jim Morrill Jr.

The final $35,867 division was as good as it could be for Bettor N Better (Bettor’s Delight-Vanite Semalu) as she won easily in her preferred front-running style. This was the second NYSS win on the night for trainer Ron Burke and the third for driver Jim Morrill Jr.

Off the wings, One Hot Majorette (Mike Saftic) flew right to the front from post six and crossed over by the eighth pole. Jim Morrill Jr. played give-and-go with Bettor N Better off the rail and retook the front as soon as they straightened out up the backside. But Heavenly Bride (Mark MacDonald) was immediately at her again and established the third lead change as they passed the quarter in :29.

Morrill, not content to sit in second, once again pulled Bettor N Better at the top of the stretch and retook the lead once more before they hit the half in :58. From there the race was Bettor N Better’s to be won. She took the group to the three-quarters in 1:27.4 before On Hot Majorette came back for one more challenge. That was quickly rebuffed and Bettor N Better paced away down the stretch to a length and a half victory in 1:56. The winner returned $2.10.

Heavenly Bride (Rock N Roll Heaven-Native Bride) was second and Heavens Legacy (Rock N Roll Heaven-Unique Legacy) was third.

That was the fourth win in six starts for Bettor N Better and pushed her earnings to $117,125 for owners Our Horse Sense Stable and Blue Chip Bloodstock, Inc.

Jim Morrill Jr. put on a driving clinic, scoring five wins and three seconds on the night. He was employing incremental positioning in many races where he made several moves within the mile to improve his horse’s location during the race and the strategy was paying off. Morrill is the leading NYSS driver this year and has been annually for some time. In 2014, horses he drove have won 41 NYSS races and earned in excess of $1.6 million in those contests.

After the races, Morrill spoke glowingly of all his charges.

“Sassa Hanover is a very, very nice filly. She didn't really get over the track that well tonight but we got the job done anyway. She will definitely be one to beat in the final at Yonkers. Mosquito Blue Chip drew well and then had the race set up perfect for her. When the rail opened up, she sprinted to wire and got across. And Bettor N Better is just a sweetheart, but she is very professional, too.  We were on cruise control the entire mile.”

There were also three divisions of the Excelsior A series on the card that offered a total of $36,000 in purses.

The first $12,600 division was won by Moremercy Blue Chip (Rock N Roll Heaven-Mercy Mercy Mercy) who is trained by Julie Miller and was driven by Chris Lems. The winner paid $4.70. Moremercy Blue Chip is owned by the Andy Miller Stable and the Pinske Stable.

The second $12,600 leg was won by Rock My world (Rock N Roll Heaven-Love The Game) who is trained by Ed hart and was driven by Jim Morrill Jr. She returned $4.20 for the win. Rock My world is owned by Jeffrey Snyder.

The third $12,700 split went to Hey Kobe (Bettor’s Delight-American West) who is trained by Jean Drolet and was driven by John Plutino. The victor returned $8.10. Hey Kobe is owned by Stephen Schneider, William Siegel and Marthe Drolet.

Racing resumes at Batavia Downs on Friday night (Aug. 29) with post time set at 6:35.

Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 3:26 pm

Training for healthcare jobs offered at The BEST Center

post by Billie Owens in GCC, The BEST Center

Press release:

Great job opportunities with substantial salaries exist in the healthcare industry and two programs offered this fall at The BEST Center at Genesee Community College provide the skills needed to secure a dynamic new career in this ever-growing industry.

Become a phlebotomy technician or learn to be a medical billing and coding professional. With seats limited, anyone interested is encouraged to enroll today. Classes begin the week of Sept. 22.

Phlebotomy technicians collect blood specimens from clients for the purpose of laboratory analysis. These positions are in demand as the elderly population grows, and experienced phlebotomists have the potential to earn more than $40,000 a year. The training program involves 90 hours of preparation and begins Monday, Sept. 22 from 6 to 9:30 p.m. Classes are held Mondays, Wednesdays and a few Saturdays through Dec. 15 at the Batavia Campus. The cost of the 11-week program, including textbooks, is $1,599.

In the Medical Billing and Coding program, students learn the claims processes for medical insurance and third-party reimbursements. The course covers completing common insurance forms, manually filing claims (using the CPT-Current Procedural Terminology and ICD-9 –International Classifications of Diseases-9 manual), solving insurance billing problems, tracing delinquent claims, appealing denied claims and the use of generic forms to streamline billing procedures.

Medical coders are in high demand and that is expected to continue. The U.S. Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 22-percent growth in the medical records field into the year 2022. Average hourly pay is $15-$17 and experienced coders can advance into higher-paying positions in medical office management.

The BEST Center's Medical Billing and Coding Program begins Tuesday, Sept. 23 and is held at the Batavia Campus Tuesdays and Thursdays through Dec. 2 from 6 to 9:30 p.m. as well as two Saturdays, Oct. 4 and Nov. 1. Tuition for the 80-hour program, which includes textbooks, totals $1,799. Those interested are encouraged to enroll now as class size is limited.

To enroll or for more information, contact The BEST Center at Genesee Community College at (585) 345-6868 or [email protected]. You can also apply online at http://www.genesee.edu/best/

Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 3:16 pm

Free school supplies being given out this afternoon at La Mexicana on West Main Street, Batavia

post by Billie Owens in batavia, le mexicana

Free basic school supplies are being distributed this afternoon only, until 6 p.m., at La Mexicana in the Valu Plaza. Owners of the little Mexican market helped organize the giveaway along with The KinderArt Klub of Batavia and Batavia resident Jill Hart, an agent of RealtyUSA.

The store is located at 4125 W. Main St. in the City of Batavia.

 

Photos by Howard Owens.

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