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Lyndonville names winners in Fourth of July Parade

Staff Reports Posted 9 July 2018 at 10:22 pm

Press Release, Lyndonville Lions Club

LYNDONVILLE – The Lyndonville Lions Club is happy to announce the parade winners from the 44th Annual Independence Day Celebration Parade “One Flag, One Land.”

The Lyndonville Girl Scouts Troop 82040, top photo, won the award for “Most Colorful Float.”

Most Original Float – West Somerset Baptist Church

Best Theme Float – St. Joan of Arc of Orleans & Knights of Columbus

Best Appearing Fire Department – Middleport FD

Best Appearing Rescue – Fancher, Hulberton, Murray FD (photo unavailable)

Best Appearing Apparatus – Barker FD

The Lyndonville Lions wish to thank everyone who participated in the parade and we hope to see you in 2019.  A special thank you to Senator Robert Ortt for sponsoring the awards.

Lyndonville Lions Community Appreciation Concert

The Lyndonville Lions Club will present its 10th Annual Community Appreciation Concert. The concert will be held at the Town of Yates Park located at the end of Morrison Road. The concert will be held on Thursday, July 12, from 5 to 8 p.m. and feature Crash Cadillac.

The concert is free to the public.  The Lions will be selling hot dogs and soda for a $1 each.  Please bring a lawn chair.

The concert  is in appreciation of the communities support of Lions activities such as The 4th of July Celebration, our Sight Campaign, the donation of used eye glasses, the Lions Toy Drive and donations to our Medical Loan Closet.

This will be the 10th year that Crash Cadillac has performed.  Crash Cadillac performs rock’n roll sounds from the ’50’s, ’60’s, ’70’s, ’80’s, and ’90’s. The band features Don Vaccaro (Guitar and Vocals), Linda Giancarlo (Lead Vocals), Bob Steff (Bass Guitar and Vocals), Frank Marini (Keyboards and Vocals), and Jim Mercurio (Drums).

The concert is funded by a grant from GO Art! and the Lyndonville Lions Club. Reminder alcohol is not allowed in the park.

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Lyndonville’s celebration was more than parade and fireworks

Staff Reports Posted 5 July 2018 at 9:27 pm

LYNDONVILLE – There were numerous activities on Wednesday at Lyndonville for the Independence Day celebration.

The parade at noon and fireworks at 10 p.m. drew big crowds. But there were a lot of other events and activities.

The Gates Keystone Club Police Pipes & Drums played a concert after the parade on the school grounds near the vendors.

Provided photo: Lyndonville Close Up students and baseball players volunteered in the hot dog stand with members of the Lions Club.

Photos by Ginny Kropf: Jason Snell of Stafford pulls away in a cloud of dust during his winning heat in V-8 class in the garden tractor pull at Lyndonville’s Fourth of July celebration. He pulled 262 feet 11 inches for the win over Daryl Kempston, who pulled 261 feet 10 inches.

Paul Townsend of Springville has been participating in garden tractor pulls longer than he can remember.

That’s one of the reasons he wasn’t going to let 90-plus degree heat stop him from competing in the garden tractor pull Wednesday at Lyndonville’s Fourth of July celebration.

“If they are pulling, I’m going to be there,” Townsend said, black from the dust and sweat pouring down his face. Townsend finished second in the super modified class.

Nearly a dozen and a half drivers braved the heat to compete in Lyndonville’s event, which was run by the Western New York Garden Tractor Puller’s Association.

One spectator said the heat kept a lot of the crowd away from the event and she only came because her son had helped build several of the machines. Only a handful of people sat on the bleachers to watch, while several others sat in the shade of their vehicles.

Winners and their categories were:

Stock – Michael Robb.

Sport stock – Frank Burket, first; Don Seaver, second; and Anilee Seaver, third.

Stock altered – Paul Van Valkenburg, first; Ricky Dellinger, second.

Super modified – Juston Preischel, first; Paul Townsend, second; and Tom Ronson, third.

Modified – Juston Preischel, first; Kyle Carmichael, second.

Stock V-8 – Tom Bellanca, first; Frank Burket, second.

V-8 – Jason Snell, first; Daryl Kempston, second; and Tyler Scofield, third.

Dirt and heat didn’t make for a very pleasant afternoon watching the garden tractor pull at Lyndonville’s Fourth of July celebration, but that didn’t stop diehard fans and drivers from showing up. Here, a driver is nearly obscured by dust as he pulls the weighted tug down the track.

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Lots of smiles and Red, White and Blue at Lyndonville parade

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 5 July 2018 at 2:55 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

LYNDONVILLE – Stan Thurber, a Korean War veteran, acknowledges the crowd on Main Street while he rides in 1960 Impala owned by Cecil Livingston. The car was decorated for the Fourth of July. Thurber wanted to remind the public about veterans, including many who never came home.

The parade included about 30 floats and 15 different fire departments. It lasted more than an hour on Wednesday with temperatures in the low 90s.

Michael Tabor carries the American flag for the Lyndonville Fire Department. Morgan Gerety is next to him with the ax.

Girl Scouts in Troop 82040 wave to the crowd in the downtown.

Mark Watts drives a former Medina fire truck from 1933.

Sarah Gregori drives a mini-antique car to highlight Circle R Fruit Farms in Carlton.

Dancing Derrick Bradley is dressed as the Weed Man. He carries an American flag during the very hot parade.

Greg Dugan is dressed as Uncle Sam and Michele Grabowski is Lady Liberty in this float from the St. Joan of Arc of Orleans and Knights of Columbus.

Jean Shervin, the Hospice volunteer of the year, gets a nice ride in a car owned by Don Bishop.

TJ Heidemann, a Lyndonville firefighter, gives his daughter Savannah a ride in an all-terrain vehicle. She waves to the crowd.

Brad Ferris acknowledges the crowd while riding an old Farmall tractor down Main Street.

The Crusaders Motorcycle Club also was an enthusiastic presence in the parade.

The Lyndonville school band played several patriotic numbers during the parade.

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Fireworks are big exclamation point on the Fourth in Lyndonville

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 5 July 2018 at 12:30 am

Photos by Tom Rivers

LYNDONVILLE – It was another spectacular fireworks show at Lyndonville to cap the Fourth of July celebration. The show by Young Explosives lit up the sky and unleashed many loud booms.

The Lyndonville show at about 40 minutes is considered one of the biggest in Western New York. The Lyndonville Lions Club, led by member Wes Bradley, raises money throughout the year for the big show.

Michael DiGivoanni of Syracuse and his daughters, Marra and Madelena, get a Chinese lantern ready for takeoff. The family is from Syracuse and camps in Waterport during the Fourth of July holiday.

DiGivoanni said he has been bringing his family to the Lyndoville fireworks for about seven years.

“This is easily the best live fireworks show I’ve ever seen,” he said.

Fireworks were sent in several directions from a spot just past the Lyndonville ballfields.

Many people brought lawn chairs and set up on the school softball and baseball fields to watch the spectacle.

Alex Doval, 14, of Medina enjoyed playing with sparklers before the fireworks show.

The fireworks draw several thousand people to Lyndonville. This was the 44th annual Independence Day celebration in Lyndonville put on by the Lions Club.

The Who Dats performed for three hours before the fireworks show. The band includes Ed Hilfiker on guitar, John Borello on guitar, Marty Hobbs on bass, lead singer Lonnie Froman and drummer Aaron Robinson.

There were long lines for the concessions,

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Veterans remind crowd of sacrifice of soldiers at Lyndonville parade

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 4 July 2018 at 8:19 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

LYNDONVILLE – Members of the American Legion and VFW posts in Medina brought a flag-draped casket in today’s Independence Day parade in Lyndonville.

The veterans debuted the display during the Memorial Day parade in Medina. The veterans wanted the parade crowd to know that “freedom isn’t free” and Independence Day wouldn’t be possible without the sacrifice of veterans.

The veterans did a 21-gun salute on Main Street.

Thomas J. Walders, a member of the Medina VFW, plays “Taps” with the Honor Guard.

Carl Boyle, a member of the American Legion in Lyndonville, pauses on Main Street to salute while “Taps” was played.

Jack Miles, left, and Earl Schmidt were in the parade promoting a veterans’ medical transportation service. They stepped outside their vehicles to salute at “Taps.”

The crowd gave the veterans an extended applause, the longest and loudest appreciation during the parade.

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5 need treatment at Lyndonville parade due to heat, including woman in cardiac arrest

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 4 July 2018 at 3:35 pm

Barker firefighter provides CPR to save woman

Photo by Tom Rivers: These kids spray water from the top of a Middleport fire truck to provide some relief to the crowd in the sweltering heat. The temperature rose from 90 at noon to 93 by the end of the parade more than an hour later.

LYNDONVILLE – The Lyndonville parade had to be stopped at least twice today to make room for ambulances and rescue vehicles to treat people effected by the heat.

One woman went into cardiac arrest near the end of the parade when the temperature was 93 degrees. A Barker firefighter was in the parade and saw the woman on Main Street near Johnson Creek.

The firefighter provided CPR and likely saved the woman’s life. She was taken by ambulance.

Lyndonville Fire Chief Ben Bane didn’t know the Barker firefighter’s name. Bane praised the quick action from the firefighter.

Four others were also treated after either fainting or being severely dehydrated. One of those people was taken by ambulance.

Firefighters offered water and tried to help people cool down, Bane said.

He said there have been hot parades before, but he doesn’t recall people needing emergency assistance during the event.

“This is the first time I remember stopping the parade for so many calls,” he said.

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Lyndonville will throw biggest July 4th party in county

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 3 July 2018 at 5:43 pm

Photo by Tom Rivers: Joslynn Bull of Barker, the Miss New York State High School Rodeo Queen for 2017-2018, was among the many parade participants on July 4, 2017 in Lyndonville.

LYNDONVILLE – The Village of Lyndonville is ready to host Orleans County biggest Fourth of July party.

The Lions Club is taking the lead in its 44th annual Independence Day Celebration in Lyndonville.

The club’s 35 members are involved in organizing and running the event.

“It’s so nice to see Lyndonville come to life,” said Ann Marie Holland, the Lions Club president. “It’s rather amazing. It’s really a small group of people who complete the undertaking tomorrow.”

Club members have been raising money for the big bash on Wednesday, and have been particularly busy in recent days ordering food, setting up tents and parking barriers. Tomorrow the Lions Club will be busy all day, cooking hot dogs and the chicken barbecue dinners, organizing the parade and other events. Club members also get to take out the garbage.

“It’s our biggest fundraiser,” Holland said. “We use the money for the medical loan closet, eyeglasses and other community service projects.”

Some highlights in the schedule include:

• The festival opens at 10 a.m. with a bounce house for kids from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the front lawn of the school.

• Arts & Crafts Show from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on school front lawn with more than 50 vendors.

• Parade at noon.

• Chicken barbecues with baked beans & salt potatoes from 1 to 5 p.m. in the school cafeteria.

• Concert by Gates Keystone Club Police Pipes & Drums, 1:30 p.m.

• WNY Garden Tractor Pull from 1 to 4 p.m. on Housel Avenue.

• The Hospice of Orleans Duck Race starts at 3 p.m. in Johnson Creek. Only 500 tickets available and they will be sold during festival.

• The Who Dats in concert at High School Parking Lot from 7 p.m. until the fireworks.

• Fireworks at 10 p.m.

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50 graduates recognized at Lyndonville commencement

Staff Reports Posted 23 June 2018 at 3:41 pm

Photos by Jennifer Merkel of Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES 2

LYNDONVILLE – The new graduates at Lyndonville Central School toss their caps after commencement Friday evening.

Lyndonville celebrated its 78th commencement exercises and honored 50 graduates. The ceremony took place in the Stroyan Auditorium.

Class of 2018 Valedictorian Paige Gardner, left, and Salutatorian Mercedes Benedict led the class in academics.

Angela Wachob and Ariane Wachob lend their voices to the singing of the National Anthem to begin the ceremony.

Salutatorian Mercedes Benedict began her speech expressing thanks to all of the important people in her life.

Christopher Clark II, Miranda Lembcke and Reese Ledford were part of a performance of “Have it All” by Jason Mraz.

Valedictorian Paige Gardner addresses her peers and audience members during the ceremony.

Photos courtesy of Amy Lewis

Darren Wilson of the Lyndonville Area Foundation congratulates Brody Brown for winning the Directors Award and scholarship.

David Cook presents Mariah Grabowski the Trevor T. Cook Memorial Scholarship on behalf of his son who was a decorated Marine sergeant killed in a training accident.

Superintendent Jason Smith congratulates Josephine Joy. Smith also addressed the Class of 2018. “Put your best effort into everything. You can persevere if you put your mind to it. Stay hungry, stay humble.” He shared the story of how the Brooklyn Bridge was built. He used this analogy to reinforce how dreams that seem impossible can become real with drive. Do not be defeated by circumstances, he said. Overcome challenges to achieve success. He gave each graduate a small replica of the Brooklyn Bridge.

The graduates move their tassels to signify the end of their high school careers and start of the next chapter in their lives.

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Robin Hill in Lyndonville hosts Summer Solstice Soiree

Photos by Ginny Kropf: Beth Gee Carpenter of Lyndonville, left, helps Jan Heideman of Medina choose postcards at Carpenter’s booth on the grounds of Robin Hill Estate during the Summer Solstice Soiree Wednesday afternoon, sponsored by the Cobblestone Society.

Posted 21 June 2018 at 9:00 am

Hundreds of rare plants and trees, such as these, line the paths through Robin Hill Estate in Lyndonville, where on Wednesday afternoon the Cobblestone Society Museum held a Summer Solstice Soiree.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent

LYNDONVILLE – Picture peaceful grounds, hundreds of rare plants and trees, a sunlit afternoon and soft music coming from the shade and you have the setting for Wednesday’s Summer Solstice Soiree at Robin Hill Estate.

This is the second year for the event, sponsored by the Cobblestone Society, and the first time it was held at Robin Hill Nature Preserve, the 40-acre Lyndonville estate of the late Will Smith.

After a very successful event last year in the gardens of Leroy and Shirley Neeper of Medina, the Cobblestone Society decided to have this year’s garden party at Robin Hill, which proved to be a perfect location with its collection of trees, shrubs and flowers.

Half dozen or so vendors were scattered among the trees, including artists, crafters, photographers and others.

A table in the midst of it all was full of hors d’oeuvres and samplings of wine, while in the shade of nearby trees, Mike Grammatico of Batavia, a former Albion music teacher, played the saxophone.

Beth Gee Carpenter of Lyndonville had a booth with her photographs, artwork, postcards and note pads.

“I’m always looking for new venues to sell my work,” she said. “I come here to take pictures and it’s wonderful to be able to take part in an event like this in my local community.”

Robin Hill was developed by Will Smith, the founder of Lyndonville Canning Company. He and his wife Mary, son George and daughter Marion designed and built the manor house of Medina sandstone. They were enthusiastic bird watchers and mushroom hunters, and Marion banded Monarch butterflies for years.

Will and Mary were traveling in northern Pennsylvania one spring in the 1940s when they saw hillsides full of shad trees in blossom north of Williamsport. Will spotted one tree with pink flowers in the midst of the white ones, climbed the hill and took cuttings of the pink shad.

Mary Zangerle of Medina, with her 8-month-old granddaughter Marian, checks out the yard art at the Summer Solstice Soiree at the Robin Hill Estate.

The first of Robin Hill’s shads are planted to the north and south of the manor house. They thrive in urban environments and can be trimmed to bush size or allowed to grow tall. They are even farmed for their berries in Canada .

Over the years, Smith’s plantings would become famous, such as the Dawn Redwood, the prehistoric ancestor of the Giant Sequoia.

Three such redwoods at Robin Hill are offshoots of a stand of Dawn Redwoods, estimated to be 6,000 years old, which was discovered in Mongolia in early 1930. One of its discoverers was a friend of Smith’s and sent Will a cone with some seeds. Thanks to the fertile conditions of the Lake Plains, three of these redwoods thrive at Robin Hill, along with some contemporary sequoias.

The 80-foot tall Dawn Redwood next to the North Pond on the estate is thought to be the oldest in the Western Hemisphere .

Today, Robin Hill is the home of Doug and Valerie Pratt, son and granddaughter of Larry and Charlotte Smith Pratt.

Other trees and shrubs include linden, a Gingko tree, a Franklinia bush, sycamores, beech, witch hazel, Carolina silverbell, Japanese Umbrella pine, a multi-trunk European larch and Japanese maples.

The grounds are available for weddings, photography and other events – to anyone who loves and respects nature.

With this successful event over, the Cobblestone Society is moving forward with plans for its next fundraiser, the annual Historic Trades Fair on June 30.

Hibiscus bushes bloom on the grounds of Robin Hill Estate in Lyndonville, which was the site of the Cobblestone Society’s second annual Summer Solstice Soiree Wednesday afternoon.

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Retired Teachers’ Association presents grant to Lyndonville teacher

Posted 21 June 2018 at 7:40 am

Provided photo: Georgia Thomas of Medina, left, president of the Orleans County Retired Teachers Association, presented a grant to Aimee Chaffee of Lyndonville Middle School on Wednesday.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent

LYNDONVILLE – A Lyndonville Middle School teacher has been rewarded for her dedication to education with a grant from the Central Western Zone of New York State Retired Teachers’ Association.

Aimee Chaffee is the Orleans County winner of a $150 grant from the Central Western Zone.

Orleans County Retired Teachers’ Association president Georgia Thomas of Medina announced Chaffee as the winner at Lyndonville Central School on Wednesday.

Chaffee is AVID coordinator at Lyndonville, Dean of Students, Leo Club Adviser and, in her words, an “AVID” teacher. AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) is a college readiness program with academic rigor at Lyndonville.

The Barrie Fleegel Memorial Active Educator Grant is named for Fleegel, who began his teaching career as a science teacher in 1955. He moved up to high school principal in 1971 and two years later became superintendent of Marion Schools. Upon retirement, he became a member of the New York State Retired Teachers’ Association and served as president of the Wayne County branch, then president of the Central Western Zone and senior vice president of NYSRTA.

Fleegel recognized that educators who were continuing their education needed recognition and monetary help, and thus the grant was created by the Central Western Zone in his honor.

According to Ann Czajkowski, chair of the CWZ grant program, Chaffee will receive her check when proof is received that she has completed a graduate level course during 2018.

Next year, CWZ educators will be eligible to apply for the New York State Retired Teachers’ grant of $1,000. CWZ educators are eligible for grants every other year, Czajkowski said.

(Editor’s note: This story was updated from an earlier version that said the grant for Chaffee was for $1,000.)

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