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Howard B. Owens's blog

Monday, July 21, 2014 at 6:08 pm

Photos: Repaving South Jackson Street, Batavia

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, South Jackson Street

Crews were on South Jackson Street all day today laying down new asphalt over the recently milled road bedding.

It's one of a handful of streets in the city getting repaved this week.

Monday, July 21, 2014 at 5:59 pm

Vandal destroys 'Walkway of Hope' lights outside YWCA

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, YWCA

The lighted path leading to the door of the YWCA was intended to be a symbol of hope for the victims of domestic violence and a remembrance for a former Batavia woman who died recently.

The lights were installed just a week ago.

This weekend, they were all destroyed.

"I personally think it was a malicious, intentional act," said Jeanne Walton, the YWCA executive director. "I think somebody did it to be mean and nasty and to make a statement."

Ever single Malibu light was broken. None remain usable.

"It was a symbolic remembrance of recent murder victim Nicole Sheehan, who had been killed during a domestic dispute," Walton said. "We put in the Walkway of Hope up in her honor."

If anybody has information that may assist in the criminal investigation, Walton asked that they call Batavia PD at (585) 345-6350.

Monday, July 21, 2014 at 9:54 am

City seeking applicants for appointment to Cable TV Advisory Board

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Cable Television Advisory Board

Press release:

The Batavia City Council is seeking City residents who are interested in volunteering as a member of the following Committee/Board:

- Cable TV Advisory Board 

Residents interested in applying can obtain an application from the City Clerk’s Office or can visit our Web site at www.batavianewyork.com and download a Committee/Board Volunteer Application under Documents.  

Applications are due to the City Clerk’s Office by Friday, Aug. 8.

Monday, July 21, 2014 at 12:38 am

Photos: Oatka Festival Duck Derby

post by Howard B. Owens in duck derby, Le Roy, Oatka Festival

Chapter 193 of the Vietnam Veterans of America sponsored the 25th annual Duck Derby in Le Roy today, with an assist from the Le Roy Volunteer Fire Department.

Luke Gottsi won. Rich Noble, second, and Jerry Castantino, third.

Sunday, July 20, 2014 at 11:51 pm

Photos: Harlem Globetrotters at Darien Lake

While at Darien Lake for the Gus Macker Tournament, I found out three members of the Harlem Globe Trotters were inside the park putting on a show. I got just the tail end.

Herschend Family Entertainment, owners of Darien Lake Theme Park, also own the Harlem Globetrotters.

Sunday, July 20, 2014 at 11:12 pm

Photos: Gus Macker Tournament at Darien Lake

For years, the Gus Macker Tournament has been played in Buffalo. This year, for the first time, it was played at Darien Lake Theme Park. The tournament was spread over Saturday and Sunday (some Saturday games were delayed to Sunday because of rain). I showed up in time for a portion of two games and the final championship game of the day (among various divisions). The team in the light gray tops won 20-6.

To purchase prints, click here.

Sunday, July 20, 2014 at 10:09 am

Dog reportedly kills 36 chickens in Alexander

post by Howard B. Owens in animals, alexander

A resident on Alexander Road near Stroh Road reports that a neighbor's dog has killed 36 of his chickens.

A deputy is responding.

Sunday, July 20, 2014 at 9:23 am

Photos: RC air show in Stafford

Heading back from Le Roy yesterday afternoon, I spotted a sign off Route 5 that said "Model Airplane Show."

Well, that sounded interesting.

I followed the signs to Randall Road and discovered an airfield behind a set of barns and met members of the Radio Controlled Flying Club of Batavia.

They were hosting special guests yesterday, professional flyers from Rochester, Devin McGrath and Kyle Stacy.

McGrath, Stacy and club member Don Lefever.

Sunday, July 20, 2014 at 9:07 am

After a lifetime of success with Le Roy football, Andrew Paladino says its time to retire

post by Howard B. Owens in football, high school sports, Le Roy, sports

After 30 years of coaching Le Roy High School football, Andrew Paladino is retiring at the end of the 2014 season.

Paladino was defensive coordinator under Head Coach Brian Moran for 25 years. This season will also be Moran's last, and he and Moran always said they would retire together.

"Also, it's time to go," Paladino said during a party in his honor at the shop of Bill Fox. "We've got three former players on staff now. We're leaving them in good hands. Brian Herdlein is a very capable coach. He'll do fine."

Paladino's Le Roy football career started as a player with junior varsity in 1970. In his junior year, as the only junior on the team, he was the starting center and made the All County Team. The following year he slimmed down and started at full back and line backer and was named to the All Rochester Team, the All State First Team, and was named a Prep All American.

Rather than go to college, Paladino decided to get married, take a job and stay in Le Roy.

His coaching career started a couple of years later when he became a youth football coach (as a kid he couldn't play youth football, he said, because he was too fat).

During the Moran/Paladino years, the Oatkan Knights won a state championship (1995) and more than a dozen sectional titles. 

At the party Saturday was Paladino's high school coach, Don Santini, who joined Paladino for a cigar. Paladino said, "This is the man who started it all right here."

Photo: Santini, Paladino and Ron Plummer.

Sunday, July 20, 2014 at 8:22 am

Photos: Oatka Festival and parade 2014

post by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, Oatka Festival, parades

Big crowd and lots of great community spirit were on display Saturday during the annual Oatka Festival Parade, followed by fun and games at the festival in Trigon Park.

The biggest cheers of the parade went up when the Class of 1984 came through and the announcers said among the things the class supports is saving Frost Ridge, and then again when the Save Frost Ridge group itself came through the parade (above).

To purchase prints, click here.

Saturday, July 19, 2014 at 11:34 pm

Eagle Scout project nets 180 lbs of garbage hauled from the Tonawanda Creek

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Boy Scouts, Tonawanda Creek, troop 6069

More than 20 volunteers hauled out 180 pounds of garbage from the Tonawanda Creek this morning under the supervision of Boy Scout Alex Hansen.

The cleanup was the culmination of Alex's Eagle Scout project, which he said took a year to plan and execute.

It required the cooperation of Genesee ARC (who hauled away the garbage for free) and Sloat Tire to pick up the tires that were collected, and Alex had to coordinate the volunteers through the Tonawanda Watershed Committee and Troop 6069.

"The creek over the years has become really polluted with trash," Alex said. "People just throw tires and water heaters and even air conditioners right over the bridges in town. All this stuff gets washed to places, such as Kiwanis Park, and so we have people people cleaning because there's trash everywhere."

The 16-year-old scout said volunteers dispersed to Kiwanis Park, Kibbe Park, behind the courthouse and behind Valu Plaza.

"We think this will make a positive difference for the community because people want to enjoy the creek again," Alex said. "We want to make it a better place for people and wildlife."

Saturday, July 19, 2014 at 6:45 pm

Tonight's Muckdogs game postponed

post by Howard B. Owens in baseball, muckdogs, sports

Press release:

Tonight’s game between the Batavia Muckdogs and Connecticut Tigers has been postponed due to rain. This game will be made up as part of a double header on Sunday, July 20th. We will play two seven-inning games, with the first game starting at 1:05 p.m. Gates will open at noon. Any person with tickets to tonight’s game can exchange their tickets for any other regular season game, subject to availability.

Saturday, July 19, 2014 at 6:40 am

Photo: Early morning fog on marsh in Corfu

post by Howard B. Owens in corfu

The marsh on Pearl Street Road, just east of Angling Road, Corfu, as seen this morning as I left the fire at Ed Arnold's.

Friday, July 18, 2014 at 7:13 pm

Photo: Tree and barns on South Street Road, Le Roy

post by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy

Taken this afternoon: Trees and barns at the end of a sweet cornfield on South Street Road, Le Roy.

Friday, July 18, 2014 at 6:35 pm

Tree-trimming by 77-year-old Oakfield resident leads to trespass charge

post by Howard B. Owens in crime, Oakfield

A 77-year-old resident of Sunny Brook Trailer Park in Oakfield never even left his property today to cut limbs from a tree in his neighbor's yard.

His tree trimming with a chainsaw on a pole resulted, however, in a trespassing charge.

James Herbert Manes, of Sunset Parkway, Oakfield, was arrested by Deputy Chris Parker.

Parker said Manes and his neighbors have a documented history -- at least two prior law enforcement contacts in 2011 and 2012 -- of disputes.

The trespassing charge, Parker said, is the result of that history and the assertion that the park manager told Manes he couldn't cut the tree limbs.

Manes allegedly stood on the roof of his storage shed to cut the limbs.

Parker was dispatched to the scene at 11:30 a.m.

"Obviously, you're allowed to cut tree branches on your side of the property, but he reached over and cut the limbs down to the base," Parker said.

Manes was issued an appearance ticket.

Friday, July 18, 2014 at 3:14 pm

Photos: 4-H livestock auction at the Genesee County Fair

post by Howard B. Owens in animals, 4-H, agriculture, Genesee County Fair

One of the great annual community events in Genesee County is the 4-H livestock auction at the fair. This year's auction was held last night. The event draws people from throughout Genesee County -- not just farmers and those involved in ag. The event is the culimination of a lot of hard work by 4-H members in raising their sheep, goats, swine and beef. 

Auctioneers from William Kent kept the bids flowing.

To purchase prints, click here.

Friday, July 18, 2014 at 1:48 pm

DOT announces repaving of Route 5 through Le Roy

post by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, route 5

Press release:

The New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) announced today that work on a project to resurface Route 5 from the west Le Roy Village line to the Livingston County line in the village and Town of Le Roy, Genesee County, is slated to begin on Monday, July 21, weather permitting.

The schedule calls for removal of pavement markings and site preparation along the five-mile corridor, the week of July 21. The paving work, which will consist of a micro-surfacing treatment, followed by replacement of permanent pavement markings, will begin the week of July 28. No changes will be made to the pavements markings. It is anticipated the project will take about three weeks.

In the area east of the village, traffic will be reduced to a single alternating travel pattern controlled by flaggers. In the village area, traffic will be reduced to one lane in each direction. Street parking in the business district will be prohibited during the paving operations.

Motorists should expect delays and allow plenty of extra travel time to safely travel through the highway work zone.

Access to all residential and commercial driveways will be maintained throughout the duration of the project.

The general contractor for this project is Suit Kote of Cortland, Cortland County.

Friday, July 18, 2014 at 1:07 pm

City announces refinancing of City Centre loan

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, city centre

Press release:

On Wednesday July 16th the City refunded (refinanced) the current City Centre debt service. This effort refinanced approximately $4,050,000 of general obligation bonds that financed the construction of the City Centre in 2004.

These bonds were issued by USDA Rural Development, and at the time were considered low interest at 4 percent. However, much like refinancing your own home mortgage, refinancing the City's outstanding bonds will reduce the interest paid over the life of the loan. The refunding was approved by City Council on April 8, 2013, and the City along with its financial advisors, Municipal Solutions, Inc., have been monitoring bond market rates for over the past year to find the time when market rates would be at their lowest level to maximize the savings to the City's taxpayers.

Interest rates on municipal bonds are very favorable at this time and the savings realized by refunding the outstanding bonds now resulted in more than $73,000 in increased budgetary savings compared to rates that were presented to City Council one year ago. In total, this refunding has saved the City approximately $303,000 in interest payments during the remaining 21-year life of the reissued bond, ending in 2036.

Friday, July 18, 2014 at 8:58 am

Batavia boys U-12 soccer team completes undefeated season with 3-0 over Le Roy

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, soccer, sports

The Batavia boys U-12 soccer team beat le Roy 3-0 on Thursday evening to complete an undefeated season in Rochester District Youth Soccer League, Division 4.

Photos by Barbara Paserk.

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