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Orleans Hub’s ‘Outstanding Citizens’ recognized for community service

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 21 February 2019 at 10:11 am

Photo by Tom Rivers: Orleans Hub’s “Outstanding Citizens” for 2018 were recognized during an awards program on Wednesday evening at Hoag Library. Pictured, front row, Pete Sidari (accepting for Tony and Laura Sidari), Penny Cole, Melissa Ostrom and Tami Ashton. Back row: Leonel Rosario, Deborah and Samuel Wilson (accepting for the late Chris Wilson), Michael Hungerford, Jak Kohmann and Brett Sobieraski.

ALBION – Orleans Hub held its annual awards program on Wednesday evening at Hoag Library and recognized our choices for “Outstanding Citizens” for 2018.

Each year since the Hub started, we’ve highlighted people who made a big impact in the community.

The following were recognized:

Leonel Rosario has worked with his family to create a popular Mexican restaurant on Maple Ridge Road in Medina. Mariachi de Oro Restaurant of Medina draws people from all over Western New York, and has received many glowing reviews in The Buffalo News and other publications.

Rosario is busy as the chef and co-owner of the business. He finds time for many community events, welcoming the chance to share food and dances about the Mexican culture.

This year on Nov. 1 he helped organize a Day of the Dead celebration, which for the first time was in downtown Medina. Rosario previously hosted a scaled-down version of the Day of the Dead at Mariachi. Moving it to the downtown was a way to include Main Street businesses and have more room to share food and the festive dances.

Rosario also is active in the very popular Farm-To-Table dinner in downtown Medina. Rosario has worked with Michael Zambito of Zambistros the past two years with the fine dining experience. This year it was expanded to include Mile 303, Sourced Market & Eatery and The Shirt Factory Cafe. Rosario is generous with his time and can be counted on to enthusiastically join with others for community events.

Brett Sobieraski, a Kent resident and sergeant with the Rochester Police Department, ran over 175 miles for 50 hours nonstop to raise money and awareness for Special Olympics.

Sobieraski started his journey in Buffalo on July 13 and ran along the Erie Canal to just outside Syracuse. He ran through Orleans County the first night of the challenge. He called it the 50 for 50 running campaign to signify 50 hours of running for the 50th anniversary of the Special Olympics.

Sobieraski set a $10,000 fundraising goal and topped that with $13,000. He was joined by many first responders for parts of the run, and finished the last leg carrying a torch alongside people with disabilities.

Tony and Laura Sidari, Albion natives, suffered the tragic loss of their son Leon, 4 1/2, on Christmas Day in 2017. Leon died two days after getting the flu. He was a very healthy and happy boy.

The Sidaris are both medical doctors. They have become very outspoken in urging people to get flu vaccinations. Leon hadn’t been vaccinated from the flu last year. At an Oct. 8 flu shot clinic in Albion, 59 children were vaccinated at Orleans Community Health. That clinic was made possible through Leon’s Fund, a non-profit organization the Sidaris helped form that promotes flu shots. Leon’s Fund also has money to be given to help children with medical problems at Christmas time.

Orleans Community Health also has educated about 2,500 parents in Orleans County, encouraging them to have their children vaccinated from the flu.

The Sidaris were living in San Antonio for six years before moving recently to Dayton, Ohio. Tony’s uncle Pete Sidari accepted the award on their behalf on Wednesday.

Mark Bennett Sr., 60, of Waterport was driving by the Gaines Valley Aviation Airport on Route 279 when he saw a small experimental helicopter in the sky. It was about 2 p.m. on April 24.

Bennett pulled over to watch the aircraft. Something went horribly wrong with the Mosquito XE and it crashed. Bennett reacted quickly. He climbed through an electric fence and ran to the crash site. The aircraft had burst into flames. The pilot was on fire. Bennett cut Heard’s shirt off, rolled him over to put out the flames and pulled him from the wreck, saving his life.

Bennett declined the award, saying anyone would have sprung into action.

Michael Hungerford led a major art installation project last year at the former Medina High School. The former school on Catherine Street was sitting empty most of the year. The school will be renovated into apartments.

While the building was idle, Hungerford pushed for it to be used for a major immersive art project. For one weekend in October about 1,000 people went through the building to see 29 different art projects in what was called “PLAY/GROUND.”

Artists were given free rein to create in old classrooms, stairwells, hallways and other space in the school. The project received gushing reviews in Rochester and Buffalo.

Photo courtesy of Melissa Ierlan: Orleans Hub editor Tom Rivers presents an “Outstanding Citizen” award to Jak Kohmann, a Boy Scout leader in Clarendon.

Jak Kohmann has set a standard of excellence for Troop 59 in Clarendon. In the past 16 years, 32 of the Boy Scouts in the troop have earned their Eagle rank, the highest level in Scouting. On Aug. 1 last year, six Scouts were presented with the rank during a Court of Honor celebration. They include Xander Apicella, Matt DeSimone, Dalton Thurley, William Harrington, Jake DeSimone and Ben Downey.

Kohmann was praised by the Scouts and parents for his commitment and guidance to the Scouts, especially since his son aged out of the program about a decade ago. His son Derek Kohmann, 27, was the third of the 32 scouts to earn his Eagle.

Penny Cole is a dynamic presence at Holley’s Junior-Senior High School. She works as a secretary in the guidance department. She also is a dedicated cheerleading coach in Holley. She inspires her cheerleaders to perform their intricate and athletic routines. They have won several Genesee-Region League titles. The cheerleaders also do many community service projects, including visits to local nursing homes.

Cole has become a passionate fund-raiser for the Ronald McDonald House. She engages the entire school community in her fund-raising efforts, whether it be a charity basketball game with numerous gift baskets, or a the chance to buy a shingle on a doll house.

The basketball game last year raised $4,444, by far the most in the 12 years Holley has been raising money for the Ronald McDonald House.

The Ronald McDonald House provides a place for families to stay while their children are hospitalized. Cole said several Holley students have battled cancer in recent years, including a student this year who is fighting leukemia.

Melissa Ostrom of Holley wrote a book published by Macmillan in 2018 that honors the courage and resourcefulness of pioneer settlers in Orleans County and Western New York. In The Beloved Wild, Ostrom brings life to pioneer characters. The pioneers were typically just teen-agers when they set out from New England to brave a hard journey by wagon, through dense forests, to get to Orleans County and Western New York.

There wasn’t a map. The pioneers followed markings on trees as they made their way west. The pioneer settlers were incredibly resourceful in taming the land, building homes and farms in the frontier. The obstacles were many – sickness, uninvited strangers, alcoholism, abuse.

Ostrom, a former Kendall high school English teacher, writes about those challenges and the indomitable spirit of pioneer settlers.

Tami Ashton of Medina knows the pain of losing a loved one to addiction. Her daughter, Christina Ashton, died from a drug overdose on June 27, 2016, at age 34.

Ashton has shared her story publicly, trying to break the stigma of addiction. She also has been an important leader of Orleans – Recovery Hope Begins Here, a new organization that connects people struggling with drug addiction to local resources and mentors. Ashton is vice president of the organization.

The group has also led community forums about addiction and helped families in crisis connect to professionals.Orleans – Recovery Hope Begins Here also has 12 trained mentors and counting to serve as recovery coaches for people with addictions.

Ashton is a trained to be an addiction recovery coach for the Genesee/Orleans Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse. She encourages people to be honest about the drug crisis in their own lives, their families and communities – and to then seek help in fighting the addictions.

Chris Wilson was dedicated to peace and serving children from war-torn countries. He passed away on May 28 after a brief battle with a rare form of cancer.

Wilson traveled to Afghanistan many times, and worked with the U.S. and Afghanistan embassies so children who were made orphans by war could come to Orleans County for a summer of respite and fun.

Wilson served as international director of Project Life, which over 20 years brought about 130 children to Orleans County for a summer of recuperation. The children stayed with local host families, including with Wilson and his wife Deborah and their son Samuel. The kids learned English, visited many tourism sites, and mostly had care-free summer days. Three of the children had medical issues and needed to stay longer. Wilson worked out medical plans for each of them, arranging for their care and donations.

Wilson was a high-energy and compassionate person, who wouldn’t be discouraged even when the task seemed insurmountable. He was diagnosed with a rare cancer in April. From his hospital bed he sent emails from his laptop, advocating for children.

His wife and son accepted the award on his behalf on Wednesday.

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State approves $204K grant for Pine Hill Airport in Barre

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 21 February 2019 at 8:27 am

File photo by Tom Rivers: This picture from September 2013 shows Darin Kenney of Brockport standing in a hangar at Pine Hill Airport with several vintage military airplanes, including an air ambulance from 1944 at right.

BARRE – Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced $23.6 million in funding for 31 airports in upstate on Wednesday, including $204,000 for the Pine Hill Airport in Barre.

The Pine Hill grant will go towards construction of an aircraft fuel storage and dispensing system. Pine Hill is the only airport with a hard-surface runway in Orleans County.

The state funding for airports was awarded to support safety enhancements, modernization of facilities, operational improvements and local business development, Cuomo said. These projects are funded through the Governor’s State Aviation Capital Grant Program initiative and complement the Governor’s Upstate Airport Economic Development and Revitalization Competition, which has provided $200 million to modernize airports across Upstate.

“New York’s airports represent the front door to our local communities and are critical to facilitating tourism and business development,” Cuomo said. “A world-class airport is crucial to regional economic growth, and by investing in the modernization of our local airports we are creating vibrant communities where people want to live, work and play.”

Other airports to receive funding in the Finger Lakes Region include:

• $656,000 to construct a new aircraft hangar at the Genesee County Airport

• $559,000 to construct a deicing containment system and emergency equipment at the Penn Yan-Yates County Airport

• $499,000 to deploy a new start-of-the-art garage parking guidance system at the Greater Rochester International Airport

• $369,000 to renovate an aircraft hangar at the Dansville Municipal Airport in Livingston County

• $336,000 for the installation of a new Jet-A fuel tank and associated equipment at the Williamson-Sodus Airport in Wayne County

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Canal Corp. will give update on embankment project

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 20 February 2019 at 4:10 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

ALBION – A contractor this afternoon removes tree stumps and packs in dirt on the embankment alogn the Erie Canal Towpath. This spot is in Albion on the west side on the Brown Street bridge.

The NYS Canal Corporation will hold informational meetings next week about next steps for the Erie Canal embankment restoration project.

A landscape architect will be on hand to talk about potential options available to residents and land owners for aesthetic improvements and privacy screening following the removal of tree stumps and other safety upgrades.

The meetings are scheduled from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

• Monday, Feb. 25 – Hoag Library, 134 South Main St., Albion

• Tuesday, Feb . 26 – A.D. Oliver Middle School, 40 Allen St., Brockport

Tree stumps are piled near a pathway by the Brown Street bridge in Albion.

The Canal Corp. is working on phase 2 of the project, removing tree stumps and packing and grading of the embankments where trees were cut down about a year ago.

The state Canal Corp. has hired Hohl Industrial of Tonawanda and Tioga Construction of Herkimer for phase 2, which started in December near Marshall Road in Medina, and has headed east.

Phase 1 work including cutting down and removing trees and mowing brush off the canal embankments in Orleans and part of Monroe counties. The embankment maintenance program will enhance the canal’s safety and security, the Canal Corp. said.

The Canal Corp. said that trees shouldn’t be on embankments because their root systems can cause seepage and potentially lead to erosion and potential embankment failure that can cause catastrophic damage.

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Ridgeway highway superintendent to retire on March 31

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 20 February 2019 at 1:36 pm

Mark Goheen

RIDGEWAY – Mark Goheen, the Ridgeway highway superintendent for the past 9-plus years, will be retiring on March 31.

His letter of resignation was accepted by the Town Board on Tuesday evening. The board is seeking applications for an interim highway superintendent who serve in the role for nine months, beginning April 1.

The highway superintendent will be on the November ballot for the remaining two years of Goheen’s term. Goheen has served in the job since Jan. 1, 2010, and was elected three times to four-year terms.

Goheen said he is retiring so he can spend more time with family, especially his granddaughter. He put off the retirement until after the winter, when the department is its busiest due to snow plowing.

“It has been a great job,” he said today. “I’ve learned a lot. People don’t realize what highway superintendents do and town employees do.”

Besides snow plowing and road maintenance, the Ridgeway Highway Department also oversees a water system and five cemeteries. The highway department is responsible for burials in those cemeteries, as well as maintenance.

Goheen praised the department’s four other full-time employees for their dedication.

Ridgeway is expected to soon post an ad seeking applicants for interim highway superintendent.

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Cory returns as Holley principal on Monday

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 20 February 2019 at 12:29 pm

Dan Monacelli praised for serving in interim role at school last 3 months

Photo from Holley Central School: Dan Monacelli is shown on Friday with a cake on his last day as interim principal for the Holley Junior-Senior High School.

HOLLEY – Dan Monacelli’s interim role as principal for the Holley Junior-Senior High School ended on Friday after nearly three months.

Monacelli, a retired Albion principal, filled for Holley while Susan Cory was on a personal leave of absence. She will be back at the school on Monday.

“The kids loved him,” said Brenda Swanger, the Board of Education principal. “He did a great job. He’s a great guy who is so full of life.”

Monacelli, an Albion native, retired from Albion in June 2017. He started his teaching career in Elba, and returned to Albion as a Correction Room specialist. Then he taught health before getting into administration at Pembroke and the Niagara Academy. He was hired as high school principal at Albion in 2007 and then moved over to lead the middle school.

“We’re very thankful he was willing to fill in for us,” Swanger said.

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Supermoon dazzled in the sky last night

Staff Reports Posted 20 February 2019 at 8:11 am

Photos courtesy of Elizabeth Carpenter

LYNDONVILLE – Elizabeth Carpenter of Lyndonville took these photos of the supermoon last evening. She lives along Lake Ontario. She said the moon was “beautiful” last night.

Last night was the largest supermoon of 2019. A supermoon occurs when the Moon’s orbit brings it to the closest point of the Earth while the Moon is full. The Moon looked much larger than normal when it was rising in the horizon at about 6 p.m. on Tuesday.

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Morgan, retiring Republican leader, praised for ‘putting Orleans County on the map’

Photos courtesy of Ed Morgan: Ed Morgan, center, is pictured with former gubernatorial candidates Rob Astorino, left, and Marc Molinaro.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 19 February 2019 at 11:30 am

‘He’s isn’t bombastic. He’s not a bomb thrower. He has a blue-collar work ethic where you show up and put your time in.’ – Nick Langworthy, Erie County GOP chairman

Donald Trump, left, poses for a photo with Ed Morgan, Orleans County Republican Party chairman, at a meeting in New York City in January 2014, when Morgan and other Republican leaders tried to get Trump to run for governor.

MURRAY – Ed Morgan has met President Donald Trump several times and attended numerous events with the biggest Republican Party stars in the state and country.

He has been a key leader for the Republican Party in the state, a man whose blessing has been critical for many candidates at the local and state levels.

With Morgan as the Orleans County Republican Party chairman, the top candidates for state-wide positions, including governor, made sure to visit Orleans County. Marc Molinaro addressed the GOP fall rally in 2018, Rob Astorino did in 2014 and Carl Paladino was in Orleans in 2010. All ran for governor against Andrew Cuomo.

“You meet a lot of good people,” Morgan said about his role as a Republican leader. “Most of these people are down to earth. They put their pants on just like you and me.”

Morgan has ended a 12 ½ year tenure as Orleans County Republican Party chairman, and an 8-year commitment as a vice chairman on the NYS Republican Party Committee.

As vice chairman for the state GOP, he led the eight counties of Western New York despite being from one of the smallest counties. Niagara and Erie have far more people, and their chairmen have a bigger weighted vote.

But Morgan commanded their respect. The county chairmen in the bigger counties wanted Morgan to continue as vice chairman, as their leader. No one was looking to replace him.

“He is as genuine as they come,” said Nick Langworthy, chairman of the Erie County Republican Party. “There is zero ego with this man. He listens to your input. He has been a real asset to me. He was someone I could count on.”

Morgan led the 80-member Orleans County Republican Party Committee until Feb. 1. Skip Draper is the acting chairman until the party reorganizes.

“I want to thank Ed for his countless hours of dedication to the Republican Party,” Draper said. “We owe him a tremendous debt of gratitude.”

Morgan decided now was the right time to step down from the role. His wife Dorothy recently retired as a deputy elections commissioner with the county.

Morgan is pictured with from left: Assemblyman David DiPietro, Carl Paladino and Nick Langworthy, the Erie County Republican Party chairman.

Morgan will continue to work full-time as Murray’s highway superintendent. He also is chairman of the Orleans County Soil & Water Conservation District, an elected fire commissioner for the Fancher-Hulberton-Murray Fire Company and Orleans County’s representative on the board of directors for the Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corp.

“It’s been a great ride,” Morgan said. “There are parts that I will miss but some parts that I won’t.”

The election calendar has moved up, and the Republican Party already is going through the endorsement process. Soon they will be circulating petitions and the primary is June 25, instead of in September.

Morgan is happy to not be heavily involved in that process this election cycle. He will continue in a reduced role as a member of the Town of Murray Republican Committee.

He will be deeply missed as a WNY leader for the Republicans, Langworthy said.

“He cares so much,” Langworthy said. “He wants Western New York to be a better place. He’s had a tremendous career and he goes out on top. It’s the end of an era in Orleans County. He certainly put Orleans County on the map.”

Morgan grew up in Bergen. His brother Dan was a long-time president of the Board of Education for the Byron-Bergen school district.

Morgan said his family strives to be involved in the community. Before he was the highway superintendent, he was a farmer and the FHM fire chief. He was elected highway superintendent in November 1989.

He was instrumental in putting in the infrastructure for the Holley Business Park, and also pushed to have 15 water districts built in Murray.

Photo by Tom Rivers: Ed Morgan cooks spaghetti during the St. Rocco’s Italian Festival in September 2016. Morgan has been active with numerous local organizations.

He gets recruited to serve on boards, and it doesn’t take long before the other board members ask him to take on a leadership role.

“I’ve never aggressively went out and looked for anything,” Morgan said about the roles. “People approach me.”

Langworthy said people like Morgan’s style.

“He’s isn’t bombastic,” Langworthy said. “He’s not a bomb thrower. He has a blue-collar work ethic where you show up and put your time in.”

Many of the Republican Party chairmen are lawyers or business professionals. Morgan was unusual in the top echelon of the Republican Party in coming from a background as a farmer and then as a highway superintendent.

Richard Siebert, Genesee County Republican Party chairman, said Morgan is well regarded by Republican Party leaders in Western New York, and the elected officials from the party. Siebert hoped Morgan would stay as the WNY leader for four more years.

“His style is not to be aggressive but he is outspoken,” Siebert said. “He isn’t a pushover. He’s very dedicated and he’s respected by all of us.”

Siebert serves on the board of directors with Morgan for the Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corp., which owns the Batavia Downs and OTB parlors in Western New York.

“We’ve been friends a long, long time,” Siebert said. “He’s a natural leader. He’s very dedicated.”

Photo by Tom Rivers: Rob Astorino, the Republican candidate for governor in 2014, speaks at the Orleans County Fall Republican Rally in October that year. Morgan shared the stage with the candidate at the event. Many of the top candidates for state-wide offices visited Orleans out of repsect for Morgan.

Morgan, in his role as leader of the 8 county chairmen from WNY, insisted that all voices be heard, including from the smaller counties, especially when choosing candidates, Siebert said.

Morgan attended numerous Republican functions in WNY and Albany. He kept the other county leaders well informed of the issues, and navigated some surprises when George Maziarz suddenly withdrew his re-election campaign in the summer of 2014 and Chris Collins last year was indicted, stopped campaigning and then jumped back into the race. Morgan also led the search process for a candidate when Chris Lee resigned from Congress in February 2011. Morgan had just taken the helm as vice chairman for the region. There were 16 candidates, with Republican leaders deciding to back Jane Corwin.

Morgan has attended numerous events in WNY to support candidates. He wants elected officials with conservatives values and a focus on reducing government costs. He has travelled to Albany many times for the state convention and to meet with legislators. He is well known by most of the Republicans in the Assembly and State Senate.

“I enjoy the traveling and meeting people,” Morgan said. “It’s a drive. I’ve always had the drive when I do something it’s 100 percent.”

He attended the Republican National Conventions in 2012 in Tampa when Mitt Romney was nominated for president and in 2016 in Cleveland when Donald Trump was the candidate. Morgan was in the room when Trump gave his victory speech at about 3 in the morning on election night at the Hilton hotel in New York City.

Morgan said Trump is a “gentleman” to talk with privately. He first met him in 2014, when Republican leaders went to Trump Tower in New York City, to try to get him to run for governor. Trump would decline that race. He instead set his sights on being president.

“I’ve had several private dinners with Donald before he was president,” Morgan said. “We tried to talk him into government.”

Behind Morgan, Orleans County was an early county to endorse Trump for president in 2016. Not all local Republicans supported that endorsement. Some wrote letters to the editor in the Orleans Hub, questioning Trump’s moral fitness to be leader of the country.

Morgan said he continues to back Trump in his push for border security and with his success revving up the economy.

The local Republican Party is strong financially and continues to field good candidates, Morgan said.

He offered this advice to Skip Draper in leading the local party:

“Do your thing and don’t try to be me,” Morgan said. “Listen to both sides and don’t have a personal agenda. Our job is to find good candidates who will serve on fiscally sound boards.”

Morgan is pictured with State Sen. Rob Ortt, former State Sen. George Maziarz and State Assemblyman Steve Hawley. Many of the elected officials sought out Morgan for advice on local issues.

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Youth Board seeks nominations to recognize outstanding young people

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 18 February 2019 at 11:46 am

Group also wants to honor adults who work and volunteer on behalf of children in Orleans County

HOLLEY – The Orleans County Youth Board wants to honor local youths for their community service and adults for their work on behalf of children in Orleans County.

The Youth Board is sponsoring its 37th annual Youth Recognition Dinner on May 16. The Youth Board each year recognizes about 20 youths for their outstanding community service or if they have taken on an extraordinary role in their family.

In addition to the youth awards, at least two adults will be honored for their service to young people.

The Helen R. Brinsmaid Memorial Youth Worker Award recognizes a youth-serving professional whose work surpasses normal expectations.

Doug Egling, a caseworker for the Orleans County Department of Social Services, won the award in 2018. He is assigned to Albion middle and high schools. He supervises some children who are classified as PINS (Persons in Need of Supervision), and also does preventive and foster care cases.

The Eileen Heye Adult Volunteer Recognition Award is given to an adult who provides service as a volunteer to Orleans County youth.

Sal DeLuca of Holley received the Eileen Heye Adult Volunteer Award in 2018 for his 30 years of volunteer service to Holley youth. DeLuca has been a long-time soccer, baseball and track coach. He also has served as president of the Holley Sports Boosters Club. He spends many hours at the Woodlands field concession stand, working the grill and refilling the cooler with water, Gatorade and soda.

Nominations are due to the Youth Bureau by March 30. For more information, call the Youth Bureau at (585) 344-3960, or email youthbureau@co.genesee.ny.us, or click here to see links to the application’s on the Youth Bureau’s web page.

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Bridal & Prom Show returns to Medina

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 17 February 2019 at 9:19 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

MEDINA – Riki Lake models a wedding gown during today’s Blissett’s Specialty Shop Wedding & Prom Showcase at the Medina United Church, which uses the former Apple Grove Inn for its church. The circular arch and barrels were provided by The Wed Shed of Lyndonville, one of the vendors at the show.

The church sanctuary was turned into a venue for a fashion show, featuring wedding gowns, and prom and bridesmaid dresses, as well as tuxedos. The two young men in tuxedos are Ricky Pitts, left, and William Braswell. They wore tuxedos provided Daniel’s Men’s Apparel in downtown Medina.

Sarah Martin models one of the wedding dresses.

The Apple Grove used to host a bridal show. Today’s event was believed to be the first bridal show in Medina in 15 years.

Jaye Sullivan, owner of Blissett’s, teamed with Larry Eastlack, pastor of the church, to put on today’s event, which included several other volunteers. They all wanted to showcase the many businesses in the Medina area that provide services for weddings and other special occasions.

Jaye Sullivan puts a corsage on Nate Sherman, one of the models for tuxedos during today’s fashion show.

Michelle Lewis was one of the models during today’s hour-long fashion show featuring dresses and gowns from Blissett’s.

Lindsay Fulwell models one of the gowns that could be wore for a prom or as a bridesmaid’s dress.

Owen Toale served as emcee for the fashion show, which was attended by about 100 people in the church sanctuary.

Darian Kinney walks down the center aisle to model a wedding dress.

Kelsey Evoy gets help with her dress while heading down the steps during the fashion show.

Hannah Willard models a dress that could be wore for a special occasion.

Susan Fuller, owner of Della’s Chocolates in Medina, was among the vendors at the show.

Larry Eastlack, pastor of the United Methodist Church, and Robin Wehling, a member of the church, announce a raffle winner during the first hour of the bridal and prom show today.

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Conservative Party backs Bourke for sheriff

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 17 February 2019 at 5:09 pm

Sidonio also endorsed for town supervisor in Murray

Chris Bourke

ALBION – The Orleans County Conservative Party has endorsed Chris Bourke for sheriff. Bourke, the current undersheriff, seeks to succeed Randy Bower, who announced on Friday he isn’t seeking re-election in November.

Bourke isn’t alone in seeking to be the next sheriff. Brett Sobieraski, a sergeant with the Rochester Police Department, also wants the job.

Sobieraski, a Kent resident, sought the Conservative endorsement and interviewed with the committee. He and Bourke both intend to run under the Republican Party line and will likely face a June 25 primary.

Bourke has been the undersheriff for the past three-plus years. He has worked with the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office for 35 years, starting his career as a correction officer and then was a deputy sheriff before working 18 years as a lieutenant. He was supervisor of the Marine Patrol, and also was a K9 officer for 20 years.

The Conservative Party Committee interviewed candidates on Tuesday and today. Al Lofthouse of Kendall is the Conservative Party chairman.

“We feel these people espoused the best conservative principles of protecting the people’s constitutional rights, open government and best efforts to save the taxpayers’ money in line with our party platform,” said Paul Lauricella, the Party vice chairman. “We want to thank all who came to interview.”

The endorsements include:

• Orleans County Sheriff – Christopher M. Bourke

• Clarendon Town Highway Superintendent –  Tracy B. Chalker

• Gaines Town Councilwoman – Dr. Mary R. Neilans

• Murray Councilman Murray –  Dirk Lammes

• Murray Town Supervisor –  Joseph Sidonio

• Shelby Town Highway Superintendent Shelby – Dale S. Root

• Shelby Town Justice – Mark L. Wambach

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