Hawley will lead veterans on 8th Patriot Trip to DC to see war memorials

Photo courtesy of Assemblyman Hawley’s Office
Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R-Batavia) poses with veterans and their family members at the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. during the 2014 Patriot Trip.

Press Release, State Assemblyman Steve Hawley Posted 2 July 2015
Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R-Batavia) announced his 8th annual Patriot Trip to Washington D.C. will take place Sept. 17-20.

More than 100 veterans and family members participated in the 2014 trip, which included stories of valiant service members and valuable time spent together reflecting on the courage and dedication exhibited by our nation’s veterans. Hawley is a longtime supporter of veterans and currently serves as the Ranking Minority Member of the Assembly Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.

“I look forward to this trip each year as a way to give back to those who have served our country and remember those who have perished in combat,” Hawley said. “I came up with this idea following a similar trip I took with my father, a World War II veteran. Through experiences of my father and my own service in the Ohio Army National Guard and U.S. Army Reserves, I have gained a tremendous understanding and respect for the sacrifices endured by our veterans. It is for this reason that I continue the Patriot Trip each year and encourage as many of my constituents who are veterans to sign up as soon as possible.”

Attractions Hawley plans to visit this year on the trip include: WWII Memorial, Korean War Memorial, Vietnam War Memorial, Iwo Jima - The Marine Corps Memorial, American Veterans Disabled For Life Memorial, Air Force Memorial, 911 Memorial at the Pentagon, Arlington National Cemetery including the Changing of the Guard, Wreath Laying at the Tomb of the Unknowns - Vietnam Veterans, Gettysburg Battlefields and Mt. Vernon.

Space is limited and sign ups are first come, first serve with priority given to the oldest veterans and first-time attendees. Immediate family members may accompany a veteran. If you or a veteran want more information about this year's Patriot Trip VIII, please call 585-589-5780 or 585-813-1608, Email: carneyj@assembly.state.ny.us.


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Kendall graduates praised for character

Photos courtesy of Kendall Central School Posted 2 July 2015

KENDALL – Ryan Clay accepts his high school diploma from Principal Carol D’Agostino. Clay was given a standing ovation from his classmates.


Ryan and his family were in a serious car accident in July 2014. He returned to school in March 2015.


He was one of 62 graduates celebrated during commencement on Friday. The district announced that 90 percent of the graduates received a Regents diploma with 46 percent receiving a “with honors” distinction.

The boys wore blue caps and gowns.

The girls were dressed in white caps and gowns.


The district also announced that, 32 percent of the graduates were on honor roll all through their high school years, and 67 percent received a scholastic achievement award.


The future will include college for 77 percent of the graduates this fall, while 20 percent will join the workforce and 3 percent will join the military.

Zachary Adams accepts his diploma from Carol D'Agostino while his classmates and Superintendent Julie Christensen look on.


Zach received a standing ovation after his goal in an October soccer game, his first varsity game, was noted during commencement.


Christensen spoke about two important events in the graduates’ senior year that she attributed to the character of the Class of 2015: the rally around Ryan Clay after his serious car accident and the team support for Zach Adams when he scored his goal.

Paul C. Klein II’s cap expresses his thankfulness in reaching the end of high school.

Class Officers – Jennifer West, Rebecca Murray, Brianna Jurs and Hannah Evans – presented Class Advisors Renee Cliff and Mirjam Bauer with gifts to thank them
for their service to the class.


Michael Kludt, co-owner of Kludt Farms and a Class of 1982 graduate of Kendall, gave the commencement address. Kludt and his wife gave each graduate a gift bag after the ceremony.

Valedictorian Tania Arellano gave her speech to the packed auditorium.

Salutatorian Taylor Clay delivers his speech.


After one of the class officers announced each graduate’s name, Board of Education President Nadine Hanlon announced the graduate’s scholarships and awards received, and future plans.


Principal Carol D’Agostino posed with the graduates after giving them their diplomas. Superintendent Julie Christensen offered handshakes or hugs to the graduates on their way back to their seats on the stage.


The Royal Blue Band, directed by Music Director Ashlea Strouse, played the music to begin and end the ceremony.

Board of Education President Nadine Hanlon is pictured with her daughter Marisa, one of the 62 graduates at Kendall.


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Fireworks on Fourth will be biggest show yet in Lyndonville

File photos by Tom Rivers
A crowd is gathered on the lawn at Lyndonville’s sports fields to watch the fireworks in this photo from July 4, 2013.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 2 July 2015
LYNDONVILLE – The fireworks show in Lyndonville, already considered one of the best in the area for its duration and explosive colors, will be the best yet in Lyndonville on Saturday, according to one of the organizers.

Young Explosives will be doing the show again. Young does about 100 fireworks displays and Lyndonville is the second biggest of them all, said Wes Bradley, the fireworks show coordinator for Lyndonville.


The past two years the fireworks shows have been 38 minutes long. The Lyndonville Lions Club signed a contract for this year for 25 percent more in fireworks than last year, Bradley said.


That doesn't mean the fireworks will be 25 percent longer.


"There will be more stuff in the sky and new shells that have come out," Bradley said. "It's going to be our biggest show by far."

Bradley and about 30 members of the Lyndonville Lions Club put on the Fourth of July Celebration in Lyndonville, with help from the Village of Lyndonville, Town of Yates and other community members.

The fireworks are reflected in the water in Lyndonville on July 4, 2014.

The Lions have organized the day-long celebration for 41 years. The Lyndonville Area Foundation and other donors give to the fireworks display, making it a big blowout.


"We had an absolutely phenomenal response from the community," Bradley said. "It can't be done without a whole lot of people putting money towards it."

The festival and fireworks show draws people from throughout Orleans County, Western New York and many former residents, said Pucher, a retired Lyndonville school superintendent.


“It’s turned into a homecoming for a lot of people who lived here or went to school here,” he said.
The fireworks will start at 10 p.m. They will follow a busy day in Lyndonville, including a parade at noon, arts and crafts show from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., chicken barbecue from 1 to 5 p.m., a garden tractor pull from 1 to 4 p.m., the Hospice duck race at 3 p.m., and live music and other entertainment.

To see a schedule, click here.

“It’s a nice family event where people can bring their kids,” Pucher said. “It’s a lot more than fireworks. We’ve changed it over the years and added things. Every year we try to improve on the year before.”


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State Police will step up DWI enforcement over weekend

Press Release, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Office Posted 2 July 2015

ALBANY – Gov. Andrew Cuomo today announced the State Police and local law enforcement will increase patrols to crack down on drivers who violate the law this Fourth of July weekend from Friday until Monday.


"As we approach the July 4th weekend, State Police will be out in full force to crack down on reckless behavior and distracted driving on our roadways,” Cuomo said. “I urge all drivers to act responsibly and stay safe in order to avoid needless tragedies this holiday weekend."


Last year, the New York State Police issued more than 10,200 vehicle and traffic tickets during the Fourth of July weekend. Troopers arrested more than 180 people for DWI and responded to more than 650 accidents, two of which resulted in fatalities.


“The Fourth of July is known for its fun and fireworks, but New Yorkers should also remember it can also be fatal if they don’t make the right decision,” said New York State Police Superintendent Joseph A. D’Amico. “Our Troopers will be out to identify and arrest any motorist who is driving drunk or impaired. Be safe this holiday weekend, allow plenty of time to travel, put down your cell phones and don’t get behind the wheel if you have been drinking.”

During the enforcement, drivers can expect a number of sobriety checkpoints and DWI patrols. Troopers will also be targeting the illegal sale of alcohol to minors.


Law enforcement will also be looking for motorists who are using their phones and other electronic devices while behind the wheel. Drivers should also remember to “move over” for stopped emergency and hazard vehicles stopped on the side of the road when they travel New York roadways.


During the campaign, Troopers will be using both marked State Police vehicles and Concealed Identity Traffic Enforcement (CITE) vehicles as part of the operation. The CITE vehicles allow Troopers to more easily identify motorists who are using handheld devices while driving. These vehicles blend in with every day traffic but are unmistakable as emergency vehicles once the emergency lighting is activated.


Data shows that the Fourth of July holiday period is especially deadly. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, during the July 4th period in 2013, there were 512 people killed in crashes, of those 199 (39 percent) had a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher.


This campaigns serves as a reminder to New Yorkers that driving drunk not only puts lives at risk, but that those who drive drunk could face arrest, jail time, and substantial fines and attorney fees. The average drinking and driving arrest costs up to $10,000.

Arrested drunk drivers face jail time, the loss of their driver’s license, higher insurance rates, and dozens of unanticipated expenses from attorney fees, fines and court costs, car towing and repairs, lost time at work, etc.


The New York State Police and NHTSA recommend these simple tips to prevent drunk driving:

• Plan a safe way home before the fun begins;

• Before drinking, designate a sober driver;

• If you’re impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation;

• Use your community’s sober ride program;

• If you happen to see a drunk driver on the road, don’t hesitate to contact local law enforcement;

• If you know someone who is about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely.


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See the Top 5 stories from June on Orleans Hub

Photo by Tom Rivers

This car was badly damaged in a two-car accident on June 9 on Route 31 in Albion. No one was seriously injured in the accident, which was caused when a driver took his eyes off the road to reach for peanuts.


By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 2 July 2015
Orleans Hub had another strong month in June when we topped 600,000 page views (609,524) for a daily average of 20,317.

We also averaged 6,569 daily unique visitors for one of our best months since Orleans Hub started on April 2, 2013. That is about four times the audience as the former Journal-Register in Medina, which closed in May 2014. At the time it had a circulation of about 1,500 copies.

The top five stories (the ones with the most “clicks”) last month include:

1. 2 taken by ambulance after 3-car accident

2. ‘I thought I was hurt. I thought I was definitely in trouble.’

3. Medina resident accused of abducting infant son from Texas 23 years ago

4. 6 are sentenced for drug and other crimes in County Court

5. Amish community mourns loss of minister who owned organic dairy

The Amish community in the Lyndonville area mourned the loss of Martin Yoder, who operated an organic dairy farm on Murdock Road and also served as a minister in their church.


The most popular sports story (click here) was a feature about two Albion baseball players who earned scholarships to play at GCC.


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Wildlife are at home in Orleans County

Photo by Tom Rivers Posted 2 July 2015
ALBION – These deer were out on Wednesday evening along West Countyhouse Road in Albion.


The weather looks nice for the July 4th weekend.


Today it is forecast to be mostly sunny with a high of 72, followed by a sunny day with a high of 75 on Friday, according to the National Weather Service.


On July 4th, there will be a high of 77 with a chance for rain between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., according to the Weather Service. It will be mostly clear at night when it’s time for fireworks. (Lyndonville is hosting a fireworks show at 10 p.m.)


On Sunday it will reach 78 degrees and it will be sunny. (Albion will have fireworks from Bullard Park that night.)

Here's is another picture of one of the deer in Albion.


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Medina Board of Education elects a new president

Wendi Pencille has been on the BOE for 5 years

Photos by Tom Rivers
Wendi Pencille was elected the new president of the Medina Board of Education during an organizational meeting on Wednesday.


By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 2 July 2015
MEDINA – The Board of Education has a new leader after Wendi Pencille was elected president on Wednesday.

Pencille has served five years on the board. She has been active in the community for many years, volunteering for three decades as a wildlife rehabilitator and leading the recent fight by Citizens for Shelby Preservation against a new quarry in Shelby near the Wildlife Refuge.

Pencille has two children in the school district and she said Medina has provided many opportunities for her sons, Noah, 15; and Jaden, 12.

The board picked her as its leader. She replaced Chris Keller, who served in the role the past 1 ½ years. Keller is a teacher at Albion and the newly elected union president for Albion teachers. He said he didn’t have the time to serve as both union and BOE presidents.

The Medina BOE is in good hands with Pencille serving as president, Keller said.

“She is Cornell educated and very personable,” Keller said. “She’ll be outstanding.”

Keller said it was an honor to serve as board president. He is especially grateful for the chance to hand his son Chris his high school diploma at last Friday’s commencement.

Wendi Pencille, owner and handler of Humphrey, poses with the trained therapy dog at the Medina school administration office in this file photo from March 2013. Humphrey, a 125-pound Landseer Newfoundland, has visited Medina classrooms. It's another way Pencille has volunteered with the school district.

Pencille came on the Board of Education during a stressful time for the district. State aid cuts forced the board to eliminate about 30 positions and some programs her first year on the board.

The district is in a stronger financial position now, and has been making gains academically.

“I want to keep going in the direction where we’re going,” she said. “We’re really doing good things here and I’m proud of what Medina graduates are doing.”

Pencille works as a market development specialist for IBM in Williamsville.

The board re-elected David Sevenski as vice president and welcomed Brian Koch as a new board member. Koch works for Hewlett-Packard in sales. He has two kids in the school district.

Koch and Pencille both work out of the site owned by Ingram Micro in Williamsville, where several technology companies are based.

Pencille’s family attended Wednesday’s swearing in. Her mother, Janet Vullo, was the president of the Board of Education in Starpoint.


The board vted to change its monthly meeting schedule. Instead of meeting the second and fourth Tuesdays, the board will meet the first Tuesday and last Tuesday each month. That will allow Pencille to attend Shelby Town Board meetings on the second Tuesday each month.


The board on Wednesday also accepted the resignation of Tim Ames as director of facilities. He oversaw recent building and campus upgrades.


District Superintendent Jeff Evoy said Ames will be missed.


"I'd like to thank Tim for his many years of service to the Medina School District," Evoy said.

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OONA will kick off summer concert series on Tuesday

Photos by Tom Rivers
Blind Leading the Blind, a contemporary rock band, is shown performing at the Orleans County Marine Park in July 2013. The band will be back for another concert on Aug. 18.


By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 1 July 2015
CARLTON – The Oak Orchard Neighborhood Association will kick off its sixth summer concert series on Tuesday with the Dave Viterna Group playing classic rock, oldies and blues at the main pavilion at the Orleans County Marine Park.

The Tuesday evening concerts start at 6 p.m. and run until Aug. 18. They typically draw 200 to 400 people for music. Many concert-goers enjoy walking around the park on Route 98, a site that includes docking along the Oak Orchard River.

“We want people to have a good time and keep coming back,” said Paul Zeppetella, concert coordinator for OONA.

The Oak Orchard Neighborhood Association and Orleans County officials are pictured today promoting the upcoming summer concert series at the Marine Park. The group includes, from left: Lynne Menz, county tourism coordinator; Tracy Panczyszyn, OONA communications coordinator; Paul Zeppetella, OONA concert coordinator; Frank Panczyszyn, OONA concert emcee; and county legislators Ken DeRoller and John DeFilipps.


OONA partners with Orleans County Tourism in organizing the concerts. OONA and the county want to showcase the park at Point Breeze. The site will see an upgrade this year to its playground, stairway and electric hook-ups for boaters.

The concerts on Tuesday evenings are intended to draw people to the Point on a weekday. The area tends to be busy anyway on weekends.

Concert organizers try to change up the band schedule each year, adding some bands that haven’t played at the site in the past.

This year’s lineup includes three bands that will be new to the Marine Park: The Brick Band, 78 RPM Big Band, and The Boomers.


Sponsors cover about half of the cost of bringing in the bands, with the county and a $2 admission charge covering the rest.

Tracy Panczyszyn, OONA communications coordinator, said there are many nearby talented musicians to draw from for the OONA concert series as well as other concerts in the community.


The concert lineup includes:


• July 7 - The Dave Viterna Group (classic rock, oldies, blues)
• July 14 - Brick Band (rock, jazz, country, oldies, R&B)
• July 21 - The Who Dats (classic rock, pop)
• July 28 - Jive Street Five (classic golden age, rat pack)
• August 4 - 78 RPM Big Band (big band)
• August 11 - The Boomers (ballads to boogie by)
• August 18 - The Blind Leading the Blind (contemporary rock)

The Clarendon Lions Club will be at the park for each concert serving hamburgers and sausage. Club members working the grill in this photo from July 2013 include Kevin Johnson, left, and Don Knapp.


In addition, The Black North Inn and El Gallo, a Mexican restaurant in Albion, will be vendors for the concert series.


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Hall of Fame nominations sought for Medina Sandstone shrine

Photos by Tom Rivers
This stone-carved face is part of the Richmond Memorial Library in Batavia, a building made of Medina Sandstone. That library opened in 1889 and celebrated its 125th anniversary last year.

Staff Reports Posted 1 July 2015

MEDINA – The Medina Sandstone Society welcomes the public to submit nominations for the Medina Sandstone Hall of Fame.


The Sandstone Society has inducted two classes in its Hall of Fame since December 2013 with six in the first class (click here) and four in the most recent class of inductees (click here).


The third class will be inducted in October. The Sandstone Society is accepting nominations of buildings and structures made of the locally quarried stone.


Nominations can be sent to the Hall of Fame Committee of the Medina Sandstone Society by mail – The Medina Sandstone Society, P.O. Box 25, Medina, NY, 14103. Or a nomination may be completed on line by clicking here.

This year’s class may include nominations from previous years not already selected as well as any new nominations received by July 22.

The Civil War Memorial at Mount Albion Cemetery was inducted in the 2014 Hall of Fame Class.

The home of the Medina Sandstone Hall of Fame has been established in the Medina City Hall, a structure made of the same brownstone quarried in the Medina area for more than 100 years.

Hall of Fame Committee members Jim Hancock, Dave Miller and Don Colquhoun will research all nominations, including a site visit. Criteria for consideration shall include age, beauty, longevity, architectural uniqueness and whether the structure is still in use.


If possible nomination information should have full background and documentation and, at the very least, should give a name and phone number to be contacted for further information or a web site.


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Orleans and Genesee are first in NY to merge Health Department boards

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 1 July 2015
ALBION – Orleans and Genesee counties made history in the state in October 2012 when they started sharing a public health director.

Paul Pettit, the director in Orleans County, took on the Genesee County duties at that time, working in both counties. Since then the two counties have added other shared Health Department staff and contracts, including for busing preschool children with disabilities.

The shared services are saving Orleans County about $400,000 a year, Pettit said.

The two counties are making history again with a joint Genesee/Orleans Board of Health. The two counties had maintained separate boards of health, with Pettit and staff answering to the two boards.

Effective today, the joint board takes effect. The board includes seven members and they will meet every two months on the third Tuesday, alternating locations in the two counties.

The State Legislature passed legislation allowing for the joint board. It will be in place for the next five years.

“This is another layer of integration and oversight,” Pettit said.

The board sets policy and serves as the regulatory arm for the Health Departments in the two counties, Pettit said.

“It gives one board to go through and receive direction,” he said.

There are at least five shared staff members for the two counties. Pettit said the two Health Departments “tip toed” into the joint efforts. The agreement has worked well, saving money and allowing staff to work with their strengths.

The two counties combined are about 900 square miles in area, which is smaller than some Western New York and Southern Tier counties, including Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, Steuben and Allegany counties. Some of those counties with large geographical territories have satellite offices to serve those sprawling counties.

The board members for the joint board of health include Orleans County Legislator John DeFilipps, Genesee County Legislator Ed Dejaneiro, Medina pharmacist Paul Grout, Genesee County physicians Kelly Rose Nichols and Mary Obear, Orleans County physician Satya Sahukar and Deanna Page, an at-large member from Genesee County.


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United Way helps Scout go to camp

Provided photo from United Way Posted 1 Juy 2015
ALBION – Local Boy Scout leaders Tom Madejski, left, and Bryan Catlin accept a check on Tuesday from United Way Executive Director Marsha Rivers to help cover camp costs for a scout in need.


United Way of Orleans County supports 20-plus partner agencies and programs through an application and allocations process each year. In addition, a portion of campaign funds, raised through workplace giving programs, individual and corporate donations, is reserved for needs that arise in the community throughout the year.


This month, the United Way was able to “fill in the gap” for a Boy Scout whose account, despite his own dutiful fundraising efforts and his faithful participation in troop activities, still fell slightly short of camp costs.


“Thanks to generous United Way supporters, this boy can join his comrades at Camp Dittmer, strengthening friendships and making memories that will help get him off to a confident and healthy start in life,” said Marsha Rivers, United Way executive director.


“This is just one recent example of the many ways United Way is able to bring good causes together with good people.”


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Guild makes quilts for migrant education program

Photos by Kristina Gabalski
Orleans County Quilt Guild members Eileen Sorochty, left, and Lynn Andrews hold a John Deere-themed child's quilt made by Andrews for this year's donation to children of migrant workers at the Migrant Education Program in Lyndonville.

By Kristina Gabalski, Correspondent Posted 1 July 2015
Members of the Orleans County Quilt Guild will continue a special annual tradition on Monday when they take quilts to children at the summer Migrant Education Program held at the former elementary school in Lyndonville.


“It’s so cute to watch them pick out their quilts and wrap them around themselves,” says Guild member Lynn Andrews.


The Guild will give quilts they made or collected from other local quilt guilds. Most of the quilts are just the right size for little ones – 40 inches by 65 inches – and feature colorful prints and soft, warm fabrics. All are constructed with great care and attention.


Guild president Shirley Newbould says the group has participated in the project for years.


On the day of the donation, “We meet Donna Spence (project director) and take bags of quilts to the classroom,” Newbould explains. “We lay them on the floor and the kids pick out what they want.”

An up-close shot of the beautiful quilts to be donated to children of local migrant workers by members of the Orleans County Quilt Guild.


Members of the Orleans County Quilt Guild leave space for recipients to put their name on the back of the quilt they choose.


“Last year a little boy picked a pink one with cowgirls and horses,” says Guild member Eileen Sorochty.

She says he was drawn to the horse motif. “He curled up with it and went to sleep.”


Kindergarteners get the first pick and then first graders, Shirley Newbould says.


Because membership in the Orleans Guild is not as large as when the program started, additional quilts are collected from other local guilds including the Genesee County Quilt Guild, the Brockport Quilt Guild and the Genesee Valley Quilt Club.


“We appreciate it,” Newbould says. “We couldn’t do it without them.”


The Orleans County Quilt Guild meets on the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month. Members gather to work on a variety of needlework projects, share a potluck lunch, and enjoy each other’s company from late morning through mid-afternoon.


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Weather Service warns of torrential downpour this morning

Photo by Tom Rivers Posted 1 July 2015 7:25 a.m.
A birdhouse is pictured along the Erie Canal, east of the Keitel Road bridge in Albion.


The National Weather Service is warning about torrential downpours in Western New York this morning.

The thunderstorms will hit Orchard Park and East Aurora at 7 a.m. and the push northeast through 8:30 a.m.

“These storms will produce a quarter of inch of rain in less than 15 minutes and up to an inch of rain overall,” the Weather Service said.


The rain will likely result in serious ponding of water on area roadways for morning commuters, according to the Weather Service.


Today is forecast for a high of 71 degrees.


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