Kendall names 3 finalists to be next school superintendent

Posted 18 October 2021 at 3:25 pm

Press Release, Kendall Central School

KENDALL – The Kendall Central School District Board of Education has chosen three finalists for the district’s next top administrator. The finalists are:

  • Jennifer DeVinney – Assistant Superintendent for Instruction, Lyons CSD
  • Nicholas Picardo – Executive Director for Student Services and Athletic Director, Kendall CSD
  • Kerstin “Kas” Wheeler – Educational Consultant, New York State Council of School Superintendents

“The Kendall Board of Education is pleased with the committed educational leaders we have announced as finalists. We’d like to thank the entire Kendall community for the feedback they provided during this process,” said Board President Lisa Levett. “We are confident this process will deliver a new leader who will support a well-rounded 21st century educational program that includes the arts and extracurricular activities. One who will promote growth, demonstrate a commitment to equity for all and invest in developing strong relationships with the Board of Education, our staff and community through transparent leadership.”

The backgrounds of each finalist include:

Jennifer DeVinney

Jennifer DeVinney is currently the Assistant Superintendent for Instruction in the Lyons Central School District and has served in that position since 2019. Prior to that, DeVinney was the Director of Technology and Curriculum for two years and the Middle-High School Assistant Principal for one year, both in the Lyons Central School District. She taught middle school Spanish for nine years in the Solvay Union Free School District and AP Spanish for one year in the Westhill School District.

DeVinney holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Childhood Education and Spanish from Elmira College, a Master’s Degree in Teacher Leadership from the University of Phoenix, and a Master’s Degree in School Building and School District Leadership from St. John’s University. She previously served on the Board of Education in the Red Creek Central School District where she currently resides with her husband Nathan, who is an electrician. DeVinney and her husband are small business owners and have four children: Connor, 11, Addison, 9, Reagan, 7 and Barrett, 2.

Nicholas Picardo

Nicholas Picardo is currently the Executive Director for Student Services and Athletic Director

for the Kendall Central School District and has served in those positions since July 2018. Prior to that, Picardo served as the Coordinator of Student Services and Committee on Special Education Chair in the Kendall Central School District, a position he began in July 2014. Picardo has spent his educational career in the Kendall Central School District serving as an administrator, Social Studies teacher, department chair, coach and advisor.

Picardo holds a Bachelor of Science in History from SUNY Geneseo, a Master of Science in Education from Roberts Wesleyan College and a Certificate of Advanced Study in Education Administration from SUNY Brockport. He also completed the Future Superintendents Academy program through the

New York State Council of School Superintendents. Picardo and his wife Kelly live in the Kendall Central School District where their daughter Sophia attends school.

Kerstin “Kas” Wheeler

Kerstin “Kas” Wheeler earned a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Foreign Languages with a concentration in business and a Master of Science in Education from Nazareth College. She earned a Certificate of Advanced Study in Educational Administration from SUNY Brockport. Wheeler has served in both small and large districts as a teacher in both general and special education, a building leader, Director and Assistant Superintendent. She is also currently serving as an educational consultant through the New York State Council of School Superintendents, as well as the chair-elect of the Rochester Finger Lakes Affliate of NYS Association for Women in Administration. Wheeler is a self- proclaimed bookworm, appreciator of the arts and outdoor enthusiast. She cherishes family time with her husband, their three children, and grandchild.

The three finalists are scheduled for individual day-long visits to district buildings. The schedule is as follows:

  • Thursday, October 21: Jennifer DeVinney
  • Wednesday, October 27: Nicholas Picardo
  • Thursday, October 28: Kerstin “Kas” Wheeler

Each day-long visit will end with a Meet the Finalist Forum beginning at 4:30 p.m. in the Kendall Junior/Senior High School Auditorium for all community members to meet the candidates in person.

“The members of the Kendall Board of Education have dedicated themselves to an intensive process to select finalists for a new superintendent,” said Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES District Superintendent and Search Consultant Jo Anne L. Antonacci. “Their choice of three qualified candidates demonstrates their commitment to providing Kendall with exceptional leadership.”

Kendall’s Barn Quilt Trail includes 40 designs of local pride

Posted 18 October 2021 at 12:12 pm

These three quilt patterns are among 40 on the Kendall Barn Quilt Trail. From left they include “The Farmer’s Daughter,”  “Twisting Star” and “Railroad Crossing.”

“Illuminating Orleans” – Vol. 1, No. 24

By Catherine Cooper, Orleans County Historian

KENDALL – Colorful quilt patterns have adorned barns in the Kendall area since 2006 when quilting enthusiast, Lora Partyka, first suggested the idea of a local quilt trail which generated a great deal of local enthusiasm.

Soon the 4’x 4’ hand-painted squares which depict designs that signify the property or the owner’s interests were to be seen on many barns and the initiative was the focus of tourist interest.

• The Farmer’s Daughter quilt pattern is on Countyline Road at Partyka Farms. Lora’s design was the first to be displayed. Lora is a fifth generation farmer’s daughter on her father’s side.

Railroad Crossing on Kendall Road was selected by Jeanette and Bill Behnke. Bill was a conductor for the Kodak Industrial rail system. This design also reflects local railroad history. The property is close to the old Hojack Line which was instrumental in the development of Kendall as a shipping center for the abundance of locally grown farm produce.

Train service began in 1876. Several industries developed around the railroad station: grain storage, cold storage, dry-houses, coal-yards. As transportation methods changed, the Hojack Line became defunct in the 1970s, having served the area for one hundred years. Two buildings which used to be on the railroad property, a small shed and a red octagonal building, were relocated beside the Behnke barn.

Twisting Star is on Bropst farm on Peter Smith Road features this dramatic design selected as it was a personal favorite and reflects the constancy of the beauty of the area as well as the changes caused by time and climate

These are but a few of the over 40 barn quilts in Orleans County. As we are celebrating Heritage Season, a leisurely country quilt-spotting drive might be in order.

Can you find this barn?

Family donates late daughter’s playground to Partyka Farms

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 14 September 2021 at 7:02 pm

Make-A-Wish originally had playground built for Elaina Dixie Webb

Photos by Tom Rivers

KENDALL – Kyle and Beth Webb are pictured with Lora and Jeff Partyka today at Partyka Farms in Kendall.

A playground built in January 2017 for the Webbs’ daughter, Elaina Dixie Webb, has been relocated to Partyka Farms, 1420 County Line Road (Route 272).

Elaina was 2 ½ when she passed away on Feb. 7, 2017 from cancer – acute myeloid leukemia. The Make-A-Wish Foundation paid for Bears Playgrounds in Lima to construct the playground in January 2017.

The playground was in the family’s backyard on Herrick Street. They no longer live there. The playground had been removed and in storage for nearly two years. Beth Webb said she is very appreciative to Bears Playgrounds for keeping the playground in storage and then reassembling it at Partyka’s, with some changes to meet commercial regulations. Bears also replaced some pieces.

Elaina Dixie Webb, 2 ½, is shown with her father Kyle Webb and older brother Colin after a new playground was opened on Jan. 19, 2017 in the family’s former backyard on Herrick Street in Albion.

The Webb family initially offered the playground to the Village of Albion but that didn’t move forward because the village’s insurance company said the equipment wasn’t up to municipal code. The playground was built to be used in a backyard by a family.

Beth Webb happened to be at Partyka’s in June for ice cream with her 5-year-old twin sons. She thought the playground would fit in well with a play area by the farm market.

Lora and Jeff Partyka had been talking about adding a playground at the site in recent years and even visited Bears Playground. They paid some of the cost to have the playground relocated and modified.

Workers from Bears Playgrounds – Curtis Northrop, left, and Brett Otto – spread mulch at the playground at Partyka Farms in Kendall.

Kyle Webb said the farm market and play area will be a draw for the playground.

“We wanted it to be used,” he said. “We wanted it to be used by as many kids as possible.”

This bench with Elaina’s name is next to a tree by the playground. Her parents said Elaina loved the outdoors.

“She was a nature girl,” Beth said.

The playground has slides, a climbing wall and a bridge.

“It fits perfectly,” Lora Partyka said.

She said the farm will add picnic tables nearby and will stain some of the new wood.

There will also be a plaque noting the playground was given in honor of Elaina Dixie Webb.

Kyle and Beth Webb are pictured with the playground crew from Bears – Lenny Yokes, Curtis Northrop and Brett Otto (with orange head band).

Bugler plays Taps 4 times in honor of 9/11 victims

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 September 2021 at 12:35 pm

Provided photos

KENDALL – David Warren of Kendall played Taps this morning for each of the four times then planes crashed during the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Warren played Taps at the Kendall Town Park which includes a war memorial. Warren, a member of Bugles Across America, wanted to honor the nearly 3,000 people killed in the terrorist attacks 20 years ago.

There was a reading prior to each sounding to let the audience know which plane crashed and who was being honored.  There were many community members that attended for one or more of the soundings, Warren said.

Warren played Taps at the following times:

  • 8:46 a.m. when Flight 11 crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City
  • 9:03 a.m. when Flight 175 crashes into the South Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City
  • 9:37 a.m. when Flight 77 crashed into The Pentagon in Washington, D.C.
  • 10:03 a.m. when Flight 93 crashed into a field in Shanksville, Pa.

Click here to see a video of Warren playing Taps this morning.

There will be a community memorial service at 6 p.m. today at the Courthouse lawn in Albion.

Kendall bugler will play Taps 4 times on Sept. 11 at times of plane crashes 20 years earlier

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 8 September 2021 at 12:18 pm

KENDALL – Dave Warren, a member of Bugles Across America, will play Taps on 4 times on Saturday at the times of the four plane crashes on the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people.

Warren will play Taps at the Kendall Town Park across from the elementary school. That park includes a war memorial. He will be among 900 buglers around the country playing Taps.

Warren will play Taps at the following times:

  • 8:46 a.m. when Flight 11 crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City
  • 9:03 a.m. when Flight 175 crashes into the South Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City
  • 9:37 a.m. when Flight 77 crashed into The Pentagon in Washington, D.C.
  • 10:03 a.m. when Flight 93 crashed into a field in Shanksville, Pa.

“I believe that all those who perished in this tragic event deserve to be honored,” Warren said. “As an American, and a member of Bugles Across America, I am proud to be part of this event.”

Big turnout for ‘Tee Off for Tom Drennan’ golf tournament

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 29 August 2021 at 4:07 pm

Provided photos

MURRAY – Friends of Tom Drennan rallied for Drennan and his family on Saturday during a “Tee Off for Tom Drennan” golf tournament, which raised $25,000 for the Drennan family.

Drennan, a retired chief deputy and investigator with the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office and a longtime Kendall firefighter, is shown with his wife Terri and also getting a hug from Tim Juhrs, one of the organizers of the event.

Drennan was diagnosed with a blood cancer called multiple myeloma in March and received a stem cell transplant in July.

The golf tournament at Hickory Ridge included 144 golfers and 235 dinners sold. There was a basket auction, silent auction and a 50/50 raffle.

Kendall family promotes hops with festival at their farm

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 26 August 2021 at 7:51 am

Photos by Ginny Kropf: The Woodams family from Center Road, Kendall, pose in front of their hops field, which is nearly ready to harvest. From left are son Ethan, Kim and John Woodams and longtime family friend and helper Frank Mandigo.

KENDALL – Growing hops is a family venture for John and Kim Woodams of Center Road, and one which they are eager to promote any way they can.

On Tuesday, the Woodams hosted the first hops festival at their farm, in hopes of sharing their passion for the crop.

More than 100 breweries across New York state were invited, according to Kim Woodams. However, while many responded, most could not attend because of the shortage of laborers, they said.

“There is a high demand for hops, but we can’t find anybody to work,” said Josh Kimm, owner of Skaneateles Brewery. “With college kids looking at getting their school loans paid for by the government, why would they want to work?”

The Woodams are fortunate to have a family friend of more than 60 years, Frank Mangio, who helps any way he can, as do the Woodams children.

The Woodams have 10 acres of hops and plan to plant five more acres next year.

Larry Smart, a professor of Horticulture and Plant Breeding at Cornell University, attended the Woodams’s hops festival with Chris Gerling, a senior Extension Associate in the Department of Food Service at Cornell.

Smart explained the increase in popularity of growing hops is due to the laws being passed requiring brewers to buy a certain percent of hops from local growers. That number is currently 60 percent, but will increase to 90 percent in 2024.

He went on to say most hops grown in New York come from out west and don’t do well in New York’s climate. Hops grow well in the Pacific Northwest, because the climate is so dry. He said Cornell is trying to create hops that will grow well here in New York’s shorter growing season.

Several individuals interested in growing hops attended a hops festival Tuesday at the home of John and Kim Woodams. Checking out samples of the varieties the Woodams grow are, clockwise from left, Chris Gerling, a senior Extension associate in the Department of Food Service at Cornell; Josh Kimm, owner of the Skaneateles Brewery; Larry Smart, professor of Horticulture and Plant Breeding at Cornell; John Woodams; and son Ethan Woodams.

In spite of New York’s climate not being the most ideal for growing hops, their popularity is attributed to the fact people want local ingredients in their beer, along with the laws requiring brewers use a certain amount of locally grown hops.

Smart said he had never worked with hops before and attended the Woodams’ hops festival to learn as much as he could.

“I am happy to take this opportunity to learn from the growers,” Smart said.

Ken Greenwood of Avon accepted the Woodams’ invitation because he hopes to build or buy a brewery and wants to learn as much as he can about the industry.

“If I can buy a brewery, it will be between Buffalo and Syracuse, but if I have to build, it will be in Livingston County,” he said.

It was also revealed that the Cooperstown area was one of the original hops growing regions in New York state, due to the fact the Anheuser-Busch family once had a vacation home there and grew hops.

The Woodams planted their first hops five years ago and harvested a few last year. This year will be their first major crop, John said. They plan to start harvesting the first of the vines in about a week.

Concluding the hops festival was a catered lunch provided by the Woodams and sampling of several varieties of craft beers from the Skaneateles Brewery.

Kendall community urged to take active part in picking next district superintendent

Photo by Tom Rivers: Jo Anne Antonacci, district superintendent for Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES, goes over the process she will be using to pick Kendall’s next district superintendent. Julie Christensen, right, is retiring on Dec. 31 after more than 14 years of leading the school district.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 19 August 2021 at 11:40 am

KENDALL – The Kendall community is being asked to take in an active role in helping to select the district’s next superintendent of schools. Residents can participate by filling out a survey that is available now and then attending forums with the finalists in October.

Julie Christensen is retiring Dec. 31 after 14 years of leading the district. Kendall is working with Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES 2 District Superintendent Jo Anne Antonacci in the search process for the next district leader.

A survey has been mailed to district residents and also is available online to assist the search committee. Click here to see the survey.

“It is very important for the Kendall Board of Education to hear from the community,” Antonacci said during Wednesday’s BOE meeting. “Send back your surveys.”

Candidates for the job have until Sept. 17 to submit an application. Antonacci said the position will be advertised locally, regionally and state-wide, and also through the network of 37 BOCES superintendents.

She thinks the small-school atmosphere along Lake Ontario will appeal to candidates. In a brochure describing the district for prospective candidates, Kendall is highlighted for a 100 percent high school graduation rate. The district is featured by “U.S. News and World Report” as among the top seven percent of best schools in the nation.

Kendall also has a Science, Technology, Engineering, Art/Agriculture and Math (STEAM) program that provides students with first-hand experiences with STEAM-related occupations at local companies. The brochure also notes that many Kendall students take college classes through GCC as well as options for Advanced Placement courses.

The district operates on a $20 million budget and has 84 certified staff and 68 other support staff. The median teacher has 10 ½ years experience and the median teacher salary is $55,844.

The brochure also notes a district enrollment of 775 students, a tax rate of $14.98 per $1,000 of assessed property and a per pupil cost of $25,782.

“Kendall Schools takes great pride in the fact that it is a small school district and can provide students with the individualized attention to help them meet their full potential,” the brochure states.

The brochure also notes all Kendall students from kindergarten to grade 12 have access to 1:1 computer devices and interactive boards have been installed in all classrooms.

“The district is using technology to help students advance their learning and prepare for future careers,” according to the brochure.

Kendall in its next superintendent is looking for an educator “who is a strong advocate for increasing levels of achievement and citizenship for all learners.”

The district wants a superintendent with effective communication skills to engage all stakeholders, classroom and/or building-level experience, a solid background in curriculum development and improving instruction experience with human resources, finance, and facilities management.

The district also states in its brochure for prospective applicants that the ideal candidate will demonstrate a commitment to equity for all, will support a well-rounded educational program inclusive of the arts and extracurricular activities, will champion district accomplishments and promote growth and innovation. The ideal candidate also will invest in developing strong relationships with the Board of Education and the Kendall community.

Meet the finalist forums have been scheduled for Oct. 21, 27 and 28. The goal is to have the next superintendent start on Jan. 1, 2022.

Kendall schools will require masks for students when social distancing not possible

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 19 August 2021 at 8:25 am

Board of Education approves reopening plan for 2021-22 school year

Photos by Tom Rivers: Nathan Loescher, a parent of three children in Kendall school district, urged the Board of Education to make mask wearing optional for students. “I think it should be a personal choice,” Loescher said during the Board of Education meeting at the junior-senior high school cafeteria.

KENDALL – The Board of Education on Wednesday evening approved a reopening plan that school officials say will have the start of the school year looking much like the year ended last June in terms of Covid restrictions and guidelines.

Students will need to continue wearing masks when social distancing isn’t possible in classrooms. They will be required to wear masks in hallways, common areas, on buses and if they are playing indoor sports such as volleyball. When students are playing outdoor sports, wearing a mask will be optional, Julie Christensen, the district superintendent, said in giving an overview of the reopening plan.

This is the main entrance to the Kendall Junior-Senior High School. The school year will begin with students needing to wear masks when they are closer to 3 feet from another person.

Social distancing is now considered 3 feet instead of 6 feet. That distance was reduced late last school year by the state Department of Health.

Kendall was able to offer in-person education for five days a week last school year and was able to space students out in the classroom at the 6-foot social distancing. The district’s student population has shrunk in recent years and the declining numbers have allowed Kendall to space out students for social distancing.

The district will be offering band, chorus and intramurals. Most students will eat lunch in their classrooms, and some will be in the cafeteria.

The district will have masks available for students. Bus drivers and cafeteria workers will be required to wear them.

The district plans to have some rapid Covid tests that it can administer and get almost immediate feedback if someone is positive for Covid.

“As you know things change on a daily basis,” Christensen said in going over the plan.

She said state and federal guidance from health officials has shifted during the Covid-19 pandemic. Right now the American Academy of Pediatrics, the federal Center for Disease Control and state Education Department are all recommending students, teachers and staff wear masks, regardless of vaccination status.

Christensen also noted that Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul, who will become governor next week, has said the state may mandate masks for all students.

The Covid cases have been on the rise in Orleans County, the state and country with the spread of the Delta variant. Orleans is currently listed as a “red” zone by the CDC with high community spread of Covid.

“This is all subject to change,” Christensen said about Covid guidelines. “The Delta numbers are quite high.”

Three parents spoke at Wednesday’s Board of Education meeting and encouraged the district to make mask wearing be optional for students. The parents who spoke were respectful, unlike some parents in other districts who have shouted and berated school board members over mask-wearing policies.

Nathan Loescher spoke at Kendall’s meeting. He has three children. He said the mask-wearing policies don’t seem to make sense, especially because people don’t have to wear them indoors at diners and restaurants.

“I think it should be a personal choice,” Loescher told the board.

Two other parents spoke and didn’t like that teachers would be required to wear masks. That makes them harder to understand and students can’t see facial expressions and how teachers mouth words.

A father of two young children in the district said the masks and Covid protocols are making young children too preoccupied with germs, to the point where they are afraid to see relatives including their grandparents.

“We’re scaring the crap out of them,” the father said.

During the Board of Education meeting, which was held in the cafeteria of the junior-senior high school, a group of kids ran by to the soccer field. They were in a close group, laughing and bumping into each other. None wore masks.

The Kendall father said it didn’t seem to make sense that there were no masks on those kids but the district would have a policy to wear masks inside when social distancing not possible.

“There is confusion all over the place,” the father said.

Kendall school superintendent to retire after 14 years of leading district

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 13 August 2021 at 8:08 am

Julie Christensen will retire Dec. 31; Kendall seeks community input in picking next superintendent

Photos by Tom Rivers: Julie Christensen, the Kendall school district superintendent, speaks during commencement on June 26, 2020, which was held outside at the Kendall Fire Department grounds. Being outside in a drive-in setup was a way for the class to be together for graduation with attendance restrictions limited to 150 people although each vehicle counted as one person each the group stayed at the truck or car.

KENDALL – Julie Christensen, Kendall’s school superintendent for 14 years, has announced her plans to retire on Dec. 31.

She has led the district through $40 million of capital construction projects in the past decade, as well as lofty academic standing. Kendall is routinely recognized by the U.S. News and World Report for its academic performance and the district typically has a 100 percent graduation rate.

Christensen joined Kendall in 2007 after working as assistant superintendent for administration and personnel at Gates Chili Central School.

“It’s been a wonderful community,” Christensen said. “I feel good about what we’ve achieved. We have awesome students and a great staff, and a great community.”

Christensen’s three children all graduated from Kendall. Her oldest son was a freshman when the family moved to Kendall and Christensen said her son was quickly welcomed by his classmates when he was the “new kid.”

That friendly and caring community is part of the Kendall culture of valuing everybody, she said.

“At the end of the day it’s all about kids first,” she said. “This is a very welcoming at district. My kids felt that.”

She said the smaller school environment makes it easier for administrators and teachers to be creative and implement new programs. She cited a new Lego team at the elementary level that programs Legos for tasks and other STEAM programs.

Members of the Kendall Board of Education are pictured with district superintendent Julie Christensen, third from left, on Oct. 14, 2014 behind the existing cafeteria, where a new one will be built. The board members include, from left: Martin Goodenbery, Vice President Chris Gerken, President Nadine Hanlon, Chaley Swift and Charles Patt.

The school leaders celebrated the ground-breaking for a $25 million construction project for an array of improvements at both the elementary school and junior-senior high school building. The project includes new roofs for both school buildings, as well as energy efficient improvements, heating and ventilation work, and updated security measures. Both sites will also see improvements to parking lots and sidewalks.

The junior-senior high school was built in 1971 in an “open classroom” model that didn’t include contained classrooms. The capital project gave all the classrooms four walls and their own door.

Provided photo: This photo from July 2016 shows employees for the Elmer W. Davis of Rochester tearing off the roof of the Kendall Jr./Sr. High School. The building’s front entrance was given a radical new look over that summer.

One of Kendall’s capital project included a dramatic change to the exterior and front entrance of the Kendall Jr./Sr. High School as well as many interior upgrades.

“We’ve totally transformed both buildings, and all the fields,” Chrstensen said about the capital projects. “It will great instructional space for years to come.”

Lisa Levett, president of the Kendall Board of Education, issued this statement on behalf of the board:

“During Julie’s years at KCS, her commitment to the academic success of students led to high graduation rates and test scores, as well as the implementation of one-to-one devices for kindergarten through grade 12 and a ranking among the top seven percent of schools nationally.

“Her leadership advocating for student excellence kept our schools open five days a week during the 2020-21 school year. She led us through two beautiful state-of-the-art capital projects and many extracurricular program accomplishments. We are thankful for her knowledge and dedication to the success and continued development of KCS. Congratulations and best wishes to Julie in the next chapter of her life.”

Former Kendall Board of Education President Nadine Hanlon, left, smiles with Julie Christensen, school district superintendent, after the Board of Education accepted seven different construction bids on Sept. 24, 2014 for upgrades to the elementary and junior-senior high school. Those bids totaled $16.4 million.

Hanlon was the BOE president for seven years until her term expired June 30, 2020.

“Julie did a great job for the district she was very conscientious to provide quality education on the taxpayers’ budget,” Hanlon said. “She led the teachers and staff in providing a quality education.”

She said Christensen supported bringing in more resources for students, including mental health professionals and a school resource officer.

“People want to come to Kendall schools,” Hanlon said. “We have great graduation rates and Regents scores. She has been a great leader of all the staff.”

Kendall is working with Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES 2 District Superintendent Jo Anne Antonacci to pick the next superintendent.

A survey has been mailed to district residents and also is available online to assist the search committee in picking Kendall’s next superintendent. Click here to see the survey.

Some of the questions asked include:

  • What are the three most essential considerations regarding experience and background in hiring the next Kendall Central School District superintendent?
  • What are the three most essential personal/professional characteristics that should be sought?
  • In your opinion, what is the single greatest need for the Kendall Central School District right now?
  • In your opinion, what is the single greatest need for the Kendall Central School District in the next three to five years?
  • What is it about Kendall Central School District that makes you the most proud?

The Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES website will provide updates about the search process, including future forums to meet the finalists. Those forms are tentatively planned for Oct. 21, 27 and 28. The goal is to have the next superintendent begin on Jan. 1, 2022.

Click here to see the section on the BOCES website about the Kendall superintendent search.

Kendall woman, 73, dies in fire this morning on Peter Smith Road

Staff Reports Posted 31 July 2021 at 6:35 pm

KENDALL – A Kendall woman died in a fire at her home this morning, the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office is reporting.

The Orleans County Sheriff’s emergency dispatch center at 4:53 a.m. receive a 911 call of a house fire with a person trapped at 1965 Peter Smith Rd.

Deputy Joseph Laudico was on scene within nine minutes and discovered a fully involved working house fire. Attempts to gain entry were to no avail due to the heavy fire conditions, Sheriff Chris Bourke said.

Four people lived at the address, with three adults and a child. Two adults and the child were able to escape the fire. Firefighters discovered the body of Judy A. Snyder in a bedroom hallway, Bourke said.

This fatal fire is being investigated by the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office CID/Fire Investigators, O.C. Emergency Management/Fire Investigators, NY State Fire and the Orleans County Coroner’s Office and the Monroe County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Kendall Fire Department was assisted by firefighters from Carlton, Hamlin-Morton-Walker, Murray, Brockport as well as the Orleans County Department of Public Works.

The investigation is continuing into the cause and origin of this fire, Bourke said.

Kendall Town Board votes to reduce town justices from 2 to 1

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 23 July 2021 at 12:54 pm

KENDALL – The Kendall Town Board on Tuesday voted to reduce the number of town justices from two to one. The issue is subject to a permissive referendum. Residents who object to the decision have 30 days from July 20 to submit a petition, which could force the matter to go on the ballot in November.

The Town Board voted to abolish one of the part-time positions following the resignation of Town Justice David Gaudioso on April 5. Debra Kluth is the other judge and has been handling all of the cases.

With the Town Board’s vote on Tuesday, Gaudioso’s position won’t be filled and the position would be abolished on Dec. 31.

Many of the vehicle and traffic cases are handled by a Traffic Diversion Program through the Orleans County District Attorney’s Office. That program has reduced the workload for two town justices, said Tony Cammarata, the Kendall town supervisor.

“The Traffic Diversion Program has become a bigger part of process,” Cammarata said. “We don’t see the need for two justices anymore.”

Many other nearby towns have already eliminated the second town justice position and function with one judge.

Planning Board backs Albion business expansion, solar project in Kendall, new storage tank for Helena

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 23 July 2021 at 9:31 am

ALBION – The Orleans County Planning Board on Thursday evening voted in support of an Albion business expansion, a 5-megawatt solar project in Kendall, a new tank for Helena Agri-Enterprises, and two new ponds in Ridgeway.

• RS Automation expansion – In Albion, the County Planning Board recommended Albion officials approve the site plan for a 9,000-square-foot addition to RS Automation at 4015 Oak Orchard Rd. Rick Stacey, owner of the manufacturing company, said RS is growing at its Route 98 facility.

“We definitely need the space,” he told Planning Board members.

• Kendall solar project – In Kendall, the board recommended approval for a site plan and special use permit for a solar project at 1771 West Kendall Rd., which is south of the intersection of West Kendall and Carr roads.

DG New York CS LLC from Juno Beach, Fla., is developer of the project on land owned by Thomas Munzert. DG would use 34 acres of the site, with the solar panels on a single-axis tracking system. That will allow them to slowly rotate and follow the sun during the daylight.

The project was reviewed by the board in January, but it was up for review again when there was a change in the location of the access road and some of the panels.

There will be a 7-foot-high perimeter fence, and there will be 98 trees planted, spaced every 12 feet. Those trees include 25 Black Hills Spruce, 39 Norway Spruce, and 24 Scotch Pine.

The construction project will take 4 ½ months, company officials told the Planning Board.

• New storage tank for Helena Agri-Enterprises – The board recommended Ridgeway officials approve the site plan for a 73-foot diameter by 32-foot high tank storage for chemical bulk storage at 3956 Allis Rd.

Helena wants to add the storage tank for liquid fertilizer called urea ammonium. The non-flammable chemical is produced by combining urea, nitric acid and ammonia.

The product is in demand for farmers, especially in the spring planting season and also for “side dressing,” applying fertilizer between the rows of growing crops.

Helena will have a “double tank” or a tank within a tank to store the product, said John Ivison, branch manager of Helena’s location in Ridgeway.

• Two ponds in Ridgeway – The Planning Board recommended Ridgeway approve the site plans and issue permits for two ponds that would both be less than an acre in size.

Kirk Nice is proposing to construct a 40,000-square-foot pond to support farm irrigation at 3025 Knowlesville Rd.

Gregory Heitzenrater is proposing a 10,000-square-foot pond for recreational purposes at 2901 County Line Rd.

Kendall’s class of 1971 celebrates 50th reunion

Staff Reports Posted 17 July 2021 at 9:31 am

Photo courtesy of John DeVault

HAMLIN – Kendall’s class of 71 met for the group’s 50th reunion on Friday, July 16th, at Hamlin Beach State Park.

Front row: Charles Sorg, Lori Passineau, Pat Austin, John DeVault, Lorraine Crombe Thompson, Cathy Ruggles, Betty Couch Montgomery, Diane Abel, Eileen Rayburn Young and Marianne Wilson Kepler.

Back row: Paul Harper, Kraig Courtney, Ivy Skutt DeVault, Jane Albert Weitzel, Dale Cliff, Brenda Melidio Terry, Frank Holderfield and Annie Ward.

Kendall hosts first community parade in Orleans since 2019

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 17 July 2021 at 8:03 am

Lawn Chair Ladies excite the crowd in what may be their final performance

Photos by Tom Rivers

KENDALL – Doug Jones chats with Jason Hardenbrook before the start of the Kendall parade on Friday evening. Both are past Kendall fire chiefs. Hardenbrook drove one of Kendall’s fire trucks in the parade.

The parade on Friday was the first community parade since late 2019. The Covid-19 pandemic and the restrictions on gathering sizes wiped out all the parades last year and so far this year, except for some parades limited to automobiles. Those restrictions have been lifted.

There was a big crowd lined up along Kendall Road to watch the fire trucks, community floats and other parade participants. This photo shows members of the Kendall Fire Department marching in procession.

The number of participants in the parade was down from recent years with fewer fire departments sending trucks. Kendall FD officials said departments are feeling strapped for personnel it’s more difficult to send groups to parades. The size of the crowd seemed on par with parades of the past, which have always been well attended.

Mackenzie Niles gives a big hug to Fran Gaylord, a member of the Murray Joint Fire District. Mackenzie is Gaylord’s great-niece. She spotted him in the parade and ran towards him with outstretched arms.

The Kendall Lawn Chair Ladies fired up the crowd with a performance to “Keep Your Hands to Yourself.” Click here to see a video of the group’s routine during the parade.

The Lawn Chair Ladies have been a crowd favorite in their nine years of performing. The group, which is mostly women in their 60s and 70s, said this was their last performance.

Evan Levett drives a 1947 Formal tractor. He led the trio of tractors in the parade. Evan is the grandson of Gary Kludt, a long-time Kendall farmer.

Jack Hall of Brockport waves to the crowd while he drives a 1953 Massey-Harris tractor.

The parade featured Kendall’s oldest citizen: Betty Wilson. She gave enthusiastic greetings to the crowd. She was driven by her daughter-in-law, Sandy Wilson.

This group promoted the Kendall youth sports and recreation program.

These candidates in Kendall – Amy Richardson for town clerk (left) and Debbie Kluth for town justice – toss candy while riding in a 1929 Ford pickup owned by Warren Kruger, the Kendall highway superintendent.

This group of elected officials and candidates walk together. Assemblyman Steve Hawley is in front, and behind him are Orleans County Legislator John DeFilipps, legislator candidate John Fitzak and County Legislator Skip Draper.

Ellen Robinson, owner of Lone Oak Stables, and many riders from Lone Oak joined in the parade.

These three were on the cleanup crew following the horses.

Kendall Boy Scouts brought soakers and sprayed their Scout leaders.

This group promotes the Lake Alice Mud Bog on Aug. 21 in Waterport