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Walk to End Alzheimer’s returns to Medina on Oct. 13

Staff Reports Posted 18 June 2018 at 8:16 pm

File photo: Nicole Tuohey cuts the paper chain to start the Walk to End Alzheimer’s in September 2014. She raised money through her mother Mary Lou’s business, Case-Nic Cookies in Medina, by selling elephant cookies that added a new link to the chain. Nicole raised the money in memory of her grandma and grandpa.

MEDINA – The Walk to End Alzheimer’s will be back in Medina on Oct. 13. The Walk is the world’s largest event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support, and research.

On Oct. 13 family members, caregivers, employers, friends and persons with dementia will gather at State Street Park in Medina to honor all impacted by dementia and to fight for a world without Alzheimer’s. Fundraising dollars ensure the Alzheimer’s Association can continue to provide supportive services and education at no cost.

While there is no fee to register, the Alzheimer’s Association of Western New York encourages participants to fundraise to contribute to the cause and help ensure a vision of a world without Alzheimer’s.

The park in Medina offers plenty of parking, space to enjoy snacks and refreshments, visit with vendors, and buy basket and 50/50 raffle tickets. The roughly 2-mile walk offers a pleasant stroll along the Erie Canal. Incentives for fundraising include the 2018 purple Walk T-shirt.

Registration starts at 9 a.m., with a ceremony at 10 and the walk to start at 10:15.

For more information, click here.

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Christian School sends off final class from old Medina High School

Photos by Tom Rivers: Hayley Farewell gets a hug from teacher David Stacey during a graduation and achievement night on Thursday for the Orleans County Christian School. Farewell thanked Stacey for the many he helped her get through her algebra class.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 15 June 2018 at 8:10 pm

Orleans County Christian School will move this fall to Alabama Full Gospel Fellowship

Hayley Farewell, left, and Abbygal Fuller graduated from the Orleans County Christian School.

MEDINA – The Orleans County Christian School celebrated the graduation of three students on Thursday, bringing the number to 32 who have graduated from the school since it started in 1996.

The first five years were at the Harvest Christian Fellowship church on Route 31 in Albion. After five years the school moved to Medina at Calvary Tabernacle Assembly of God, which uses the old Medina High School at 324 Catherine St.

The Christian School uses the northeast wing of the old school, and it’s been a great fit, said Linda Strickland, administrator of OCCS.

“This has been the perfect building for us,” she said. “It has an auditorium, hallways, big classrooms, the gymnasium.”

But the school is moving out, headed to the Alabama Full Gospel Fellowship on South Gravel Road in Shelby. The old high school has been purchased by Roger Hungerford and Talis Equity and will be renovated into apartments.

“It is bittersweet leaving this building,” Strickland said. “Calvary Tabernacle has been very good to OCCS, and we will be eternally grateful for their hospitality.”

Vince Iorio, pastor of Calvary Tabernacle, welcomes the audience to the graduation and achievement night program. Iorio graduated from the old Medina High School with the Class of 1972. He said the church has been proud to partner with OCCS the past 17 years.

Hayley Farewell

There were 21 students enrolled at OCCS this school year in grades 1 through 12. Three students – Hayley Farewell, Abbygal Fuller and Camille Pollock – graduated on Thursday, when many alumni returned for the final graduation program and achievement night at the old high school.

Farewell delivered the graduate address on Thursday. She has been a student at the school for eight years, and praised the staff for their support, especially since her mother, Christina Ashton, died on June 27, 2016.

“The OCCS staff has been there for me in the worst time of my life and the best time,” Farewell said.

She has been a student the past two years at the Orleans-Niagara BOCES, taking classes in the security and law enforcement program. She will attend St. John Fisher College in Rochester this fall to study law enforcement. Her goal is to become a state trooper.

Linda Strickland, school administrator, congratulates students during achievement night.

Russ Peters, pastor of Alabama Full Gospel Fellowship, said the church is pleased to welcome the school starting in the fall.

Abbygal Fuller was praised by Strickland, the school administrator.

“She is always willing to try and she conquers,” Strickland said. “OCCS is better because Abby walked our halls.”

The other graduate, Camille Pollock, was unable to attend the ceremony because she has a key role in a dance recital. She was expected to be presented her diploma during the recital.

Strickland said the school is Christian based, and has a weekly chapel service. The small-school atmosphere is nurturing for students, she said.

“There is a need in the county for this school,” Strickland said. “As long as they need, we’ll stay open.”

Many of the students have struggled in the public schools before coming to OCCS.

“We focus on what you can do,” Strickland said. “We’re here primarily for the Christian education, but we’ve also become a comfortable place for people to learn and be themselves.”

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VFW in Medina has a new leader

Posted 15 June 2018 at 7:49 am

Photos by Ginny Kropf

MEDINA – Jim Freas, right, is the outgoing commander of the VFW Post 1483 in Medina. He hands the gavel over to new commander Dan Anderson during their meeting Thursday night. Freas has completed two terms as commander.

The VFW Post 1483 Auxiliary elected officers during their meeting Thursday night. Seated from left are president Cindy Harris of Gasport and junior vice president Becky Persons of Medina. Standing are Art Kreutz of Medina, chaplain; Donna Little of Lockport, secretary; Lynn Poler of Medina, treasurer; Kimmie Persons of Medina; and Tim Elliott of Medina, trustee.

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Medina Marching Band presents annual awards, names leaders for next year

Posted 11 June 2018 at 11:26 am

Provided photo: The 2018-2019 student staff (for the Medina Marching Band includes: Drum Major – Maisie Griffin; Assistant Drum Majors – Alissa Blount & Ray Paul; Flute Section Leaders – Rebecca Lunden & Sarah Cochrane; Clarinet – Jessica Granchelli; Saxophone – Emma Baldwin; Mellophone – Lily Kiebala & Maisie Griffin; Trumpet – Erin Dunham; Trombone/Baritone – Kody Leno; Tuba – JP Pietrafesa; Front Ensemble – Jada Draper; Head Band Manager – Ray Paul; Band Managers – Travis Gotts, Shelby Martin, Dan Squire, Margaret Klotzbach & Dawson Brown; Uniforms – Libby Cook & Mary Flores; Secretary/Librarian/Attendance – Kali Schrader & Sophia Cardone;  Color Guard Captain – Kaela Grosslinger; Color Guard Managers – Sarah Goodin, McKenna Callard & Talishiona Feitshans; Head of Percussion – Ben Zakes.

Courtesy of Medina Marching Bnad

MEDINA – The 48th annual Medina Mustang Band Banquet & Awards ceremony was held Saturday at the Ridgeway Fire Hall.

It was an evening of awards and reflection on the many accomplishments in the 2017-2018 school year. Special guests included Mark Kruzynski, school district superintendent; Kevin Lasky, Assistant High School Principal; Wendi Pencille, Board of Education member; and Jonathan Seiler who started and funded the Steele Family Scholarship in 2016.

The Booster Organization was credited for its continued dedication and commitment to the band. Outgoing officers were recognized and thanked for their help as well as the incoming officers.

Instructional staff were recognized: Drill & Music – Jeanette Sheliga;  Color Guard Instructor – Katie Granchelli; Percussion – Jeff Pask, T.J. Gray and Brian King; Pit – Terry Steele and David Stacey; Color Guard Design and Instruction – Vinnie Monacelli,  Kristen Costa and Diana Baker; Assistant Band Directors – Becky Botsford and Diana Baker.  Joe Organisciak – Music Arranger; Percussion Instructors – Joe Guadagnino.

The Harry Dinkle Award was established to recognize someone who is not a Booster Officer but who volunteers a great deal of personal time and effort to the  program. This year’s recipient is Shawn Callard.

The NYS Field Band Conference scholarship was given to Shelby Green. The Mustang Band Service Scholarship was established in honor of past boosters who gave countless hours of volunteer time. The scholarship was established by donations received in memory of deceased boosters. This year’s recipient is Madison Kenward.

The Steele Family Award was established in 2016 by Jonathan Seiler and given to a senior who has given their best throughout their years in the band program. This year’s recipient is Madison Kenward.

The Joseph C. McKain award is given to a junior and a senior in recognition of their dedication and commitment to the band. This year’s recipients are Ben Zakes, a junior, and Christian Hahn, a senior.

The Alfred Hartway Drum Major award was established in 1968 in loving memory of a man who was a bus driver and avid supporter of the band program. This year’s recipients are Shelby Green (Drum Major), and Madison Kenward and Brigid Keller (Assistant Drum Majors).  Their names will be engraved on the plaque that is displayed in the high school.

Recognition was given to the Winter Guard program. This year Medina sponsored 3 WG units. Our newest guard, the Pony Cadets, consisted of 10 new sixth-graders who performed “Then & Now” featuring the music of Michael Jackson & Bruno Mars. They placed 4th in their class at the championships. The second guard unit, the Mustang Cadets, consisted of 13 students in grades 7 and 8 performing “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” and won gold at the championships. The third guard unit, Medina’s Varsity Guard, consisted of 16 girls in grades 9-12 performing “24 Hours” and winning gold at the championships. Each girl received recognition along with a medal and patch.

Outstanding Band Member awards were given in three categories.  Outstanding Rookies went to Will Roush (brass), Kaylee Lacey (woodwinds), Jaxon Phillips (percussion) and Ava Chambers (guard),  Most improved went to Erin Dunham (brass), Kayleigh Wright (ww), August Pietrafesa (percussion) and Kiana Cleveland (guard). Most valuable  went to Chris Woodroe (brass), Brigid Keller (ww), Ben Zakes (percussion) and Kaela Grosslinger (guard).

Director’s Award was given by Ms. Baker to Phallon Rivera; given by Mrs. Botsford to Shelby Martin; given by Mr. Steele to Sara Goodin.

Attendance awards are given to students who had perfect attendance in Fall, Spring and both. Service awards are given to students who have between 1 to 14 seasons of participation. Graduating seniors are given the medallions. Each student who held a staff position this past season was given a plaque. The Junior Prologue was given by Alissa Blount and the Senior Epilogue by Shelby Green. A slide show of the year’s events was prepared by Katie Granchelli and Diana Baker.

The 2018 Fall show is entitled “Together As One” and practices begin June 12 for the various musical sections and a full band rehearsal starting June 19. Band Camp runs August 6-10.

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Medina gives graduates a spiritual sendoff

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 June 2018 at 7:59 am

Photos by Tom Rivers

MEDINA – Dan Doctor, director of community outreach for Medina Central School, was keynote speaker at a “moving forward” service Sunday evening for Medina’s Class of 2018. The service was like a baccalaureate with a religious message and blessing.

Doctor wore his collar as an ordained elder for Ephesus Ministries in Buffalo. He said God has been a big part of his life since he was in seventh grade. He praised his mother, now 92, for being so devoted in her prayer life, lifting up her nine children.

Doctor urged students to have a prayer life, even if it is a whisper.

Doctor needed some students and teacher Lisa Roeseler to help illustrate his message about the life of Moses, who led the Israelites against an unjust Egyptian Pharaoh. Moses demanded the Israelites be released from slavery, according to the Book of Exodus. After God sent 10 plagues, Moses led the people across the Red Sea to Mount Sinai, where he received the Ten Commandments.

Doctor said Moses kept moving forward, pushing for a better land, despite the natural inclination to want to stay put with what’s familiar. Moses pushed the people to keep moving forward, even when they were grumbling and unsure if he was taking them in the right direction.

Doctor said God will use challenges to get people’s attention.

“Sometimes God has to give us a plague for us to hear Him,” Doctor said.

Shelby Green, the Student Association president, gives the welcome message.

Sunday’s service was the first baccalaureate at Medina in at least two decades. The Medina Area Association of Churches reached out to the high school about bringing the service back. A group of students decided to take the lead in working with the MAAC on the “moving forward” celebration.

About a quarter of the class’s 122 members attended the service. Shelby Green, the Student Association president, said that is a good start to what she hopes will become an annual tradition for the senior class.

“It’s another event to honor the seniors,” she said.

Three students shared reflections during the service. Jack Hill, pictured, spoke about “Upward.” He encouraged his classmates to develop habits that will help them make good decisions and be prepared for the future. Madison Kenward spoke about “Forward” and Jacob Bensley shared about “Upward.” Bensley told his classmates that God loves them despite their flaws and mistakes.

Alissa Blount, the incoming Student Association president, thanked the senior class for their dedication to the school. She said the current juniors have a tough challenge in following the seniors.

Russ Peters, pastor of the Alabama Full Gospel Fellowship, was among the clergy leaders to address the students.

Local clergy leaders also shared reflections and prayed a blessing on the Class of 2018 as they soon finish their high school careers. Michael Stephenson is pastor of the First Baptist Church in Medina, while Vince Iorio leads the Calvary Tabernacle Church, Dan Thurber is pastor of Oak Orchard Assembly of God, Russ Peters leads the Alabama Full Gospel Fellowship, and Tony Hipes is pastor of the Medina United Methodist Church.

Iorio thanked the students and school for allowing the “moving forward” service. He said the student speakers are an “amazing group.”

Peters added to Doctor’s message about Moses. Peters said Moses resisted unjust laws and an unjust pharaoh.

“I wonder if there are any young Moseses here?” Peters said. “Are there people here who will stand up for people who don’t have voices here?”

Peters shared a famous quote attributed to Edmund Burke: “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”

Stephenson, the First Baptist pastor, told the students that the churches wanted to give them a “spiritually-focused sendoff.”

He also wanted them to know that God wants to be part of their journey in life.

“It sounds cliché but God loves each and every one of you,” Stephenson said. “He loves each of you and all of you.”

Lisa Roeseler directs the A’Capella Ensemble in “A Parting Blessing.”

Lisa Roeseler leads the A’Capella Ensemble. She is retiring after this school year.

Christian Hahn, a senior at Medina, offers a closing benediction at the “moving forward” service.

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Senior Center in Western Orleans celebrates 50 years

Photos by Ginny Kropf: Rosemary Eden, left, looks at a photo album of old pictures and news clippings at the Senior Center of Western Orleans’ 50th anniversary open house Saturday, while executive director Kelly Shaw talks to Jack Bellack, one of the Center’s 11 members who are over 90.

Posted 10 June 2018 at 7:52 am

Lynn Creasey, president of the Western Orleans Senior Center, pins a rose on Stanley Stack of Medina. Stack will be 96 on July 3 and still enjoys playing pinochle two days a week at the Senior Center.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent

MEDINA – The Senior Center of Western Orleans celebrated 50 years of serving the senior population of the Medina area during an open house Saturday.

Six of the Center’s members who are 90 or older were in attendance, including Stanley Stack, who will be 96 July 3; Jack and Mitzy Bellack, Pete Amos, Paula Mack and Anne Albone, who just turned 90 on June 8. Albone is also the longest paying member of the Senior Center.

The open house included a visit from Barry Flansburg, representing Assemblyman Stephen Hawley. Flansburg read a proclamation from New York State Assembly, in which the Senior Center was recognized as “an exceptional organization worthy of the esteem of the community and the Assembly of the State of New York.”

The center was founded 50 years ago when several seniors got to thinking there should be a place in Medina for seniors to gather and enjoy camaraderie.

The village was approached about using the New York Central railroad depot on West Avenue, and an agreement was reached to allow use of the building.

The late educator Clifford Wise was the first president and the Rev. Burt Entrekin was the first speaker.

The group at one time had 600 members, but as president Lynn Creasey told the crowd on Saturday, many senior organizations are closing their doors. The Senior Center of Western Orleans has shrunk to 250 members, but the center is still active and thriving.

Lynn Creasey, president of the Senior Center of Western Orleans, presents a red rose to Kelly Shaw, executive director, and Jean Wetherbee, membership chairman, during the 50th anniversary open house on Saturday.

Creasey said he became a member at the urging of the late Lee Roberts, who loved to play cards.

“He asked me to join, but I told him I didn’t have time,” Creasey said. “He even offered to pay my $10 dues, but I told him that wasn’t the issue. I just didn’t have time. He finally convinced me and I joined. It was the best thing I’ve ever done and I have the most fun playing cards.”

The Center has euchre games every Wednesday and Thursday afternoon and players are always welcome. Cost to play is only $2. A group also plays pinochle in the back room.

Paula Mack and Pete Amos, both over 90, share a hug during the Western Orleans Senior Center ’s 50th anniversary open house on Saturday.

There are exercise classes on Wednesday mornings and one can expect to find a jigsaw puzzle in the works any time.

The Center has a gift shop which is always full of unique gift items, puzzles, clothing, jewelry and hand-knitted and crocheted items.

Many seniors and members of the community turned out for the open house, to enjoy refreshments, browse through scrapbooks of articles and pictures chronicling the 50-year history and share memories.

There was talk of the Blizzard of ’77 and how 50 years ago, all the ladies in the pictures had dresses on.

Creasey said the organization was blessed and it was important to thank all the members – those who support it financially and physically. He said the Senior Center had made changes during the years, such as new signs and new LED lighting which is just being installed.

He thanked the village and the community for their ongoing support and the volunteers who help with special events, sit at the front desk or just buy a ticket for a fundraiser.

The Senior Center has dinner meetings the second Monday of the month, an annual rummage sale and a basket raffle twice a year. Tickets for the spring raffle went on sale Saturday.

Donations are always welcome for items to sell in the gift shop, merchandise for the rummage sales and baskets for the basket raffles.

Visitors to the 50th anniversary open house at the Senior Center of Western Orleans on Saturday found time for a game of cards. From left are Linda Britton, Jane Stroyan, Lee Smith and Diane Fry. Standing at rear is Gloria Bellack, one of the Senior Center’s 11 members over 90, who is talking to Sherry Tuohey at right.

Barry Flansburg of Albion, right, reads a proclamation from Assemblyman Stephen Hawley at the Senior Center of Western Orleans’ 50th anniversary open house.

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Church tries to rally assistance for widow of Medina man, 28

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 1 June 2018 at 2:41 pm

Elliott Parfitt died unexpectedly on May 27

Elliott Parffit

MEDINA – Elliott Parfitt left no doubt about his work ethic, his love for others and commitment to his family and to God, his pastor said today.

Parfitt, 28, died unexpectedly on May 27. That day he went to the hospital because he was having trouble breathing. About four hours after he was admitted, he died from aortic dissection.

“It was very unexpected, very sudden,” said Steven Pawley, pastor of the Antioch Anabaptist Church in Shelby Center.

Two days after Parfitt’s death, his wife Hannah gave birth to their second child, a daughter Rachel. The couple also has a son, Gideon, who is 1.

Parfitt was a leader at the church (which is located behind the fire hall.) He led the church as the song leader and played the cello, guitar and dulcimer.

“He was gifted singing and with playing instruments,” Pawley said. “He just really enjoyed that. He was a master of many things.”

Parfitt travelled on several mission trips to share the Gospel message, twice going to Romania, Honduras and Africa. He earned a private pilot license so that he could someday be a bush pilot for missionaries in remote places.

He ran his own business – All Things Fixed, LLC – and remodeled local homes, and also repaired tractors, farm trailers and personal automobiles.

He was one of eight siblings. His father, Ken Parfitt, was tragically killed on Dec. 15, 2010 after he was struck by a vehicle on I-390 near Avon. He was helping a motorist in distress.

Elliott was 21 when his father was killed. Elliott has been an active member of the Antioch Anabaptist Church for about nine years, the church pastor said.

The church welcomes the community to assist Elliott’s family during this difficult time. Hannah Parfitt is a private person who is used to helping others, Pawley said.

“Hannah’s faith in the Lord Jesus is both strong and inspiring,” Pawley said. “She doesn’t want to draw any attention to herself.”

The church didn’t want to do a high-profile GoFundMe page for Hannah and her children, but has instead created a web page with an address where people can send money to Hannah directly.

Click here for more information.

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Classic cars, farmers’ market will return to Medina

File photos by Tom Rivers: Charlie Crumb of Albion wipes rain off his 1969 Camaro during the Super Cruise on Main Street in Medina last August. The classic car shows return this Friday in the Canal Basin.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 30 May 2018 at 11:16 am

MEDINA – Classic cars and fresh produce will return to downtown Medina.

The Canal Basin has hosted the car shows for more than 20 years. A new season begins Friday from 5:30 to 8 p.m. and will continue weekly through late August. The car shows will be capped with a Super Cruise on Aug. 29 when a section of Main Street is blocked off and there is a performance by Elvis impersonator Terry Buchwald.

Terry Buchwald, an Elvis impersonator, performed at the Super Cruise on Aug. 23, 2017.

The weekly shows include music from DJ Hank Nevins. Dave Green is one of the coordinators of the car shows. He said Medina businesses are generous in sponsoring the events, donating for the DJ, to bring in Buchwald and for door prizes.

There are typically 80 to 100 cars for the Friday car shows, with the Super Cruise drawing more than 200.

Medina will also welcome the return of the Canal Village Farmers’ Market on Saturday. The market is open from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 127 West Center St., across from the Medina Post Office.

The market operates under the auspices of the Orleans Renaissance Group and will continue each Saturday through October.

“The 2017-18 Winter Market was very well attended,” said Gail Miller, the market manager. “It’s made us very excited to begin what we feel is going to be our best summer market yet.”

Miller cited yet more new vendor offerings, the return of a Community Tent for community organizations, the Artisans Tent, the return of Canal Kids Activities and family related fun and games by the Medina FFA.

“We’ve also been able to secure the return of our crowd-favorite live music too,” said Miller. “Ernie Lawrence, Dark Road Duo and The Road to Azure will all be back, hopefully with other new groups.”

The vintage R&B/Blues of The Road to Azure will be featured opening day.

Miller also said there will be an expanded schedule of special guests, as well as various special events such as food prep demos and raffles.

“We’re also working on plans for a food tour that would encompass the market and downtown.” said Miller. “This project is in the very early planning stages, but will be a multi-opportunity event that people are really going to want to experience. The market, food and historic downtown are three things that naturally go together.”

Raspberries from Panek Farms were available at Canal Village Farmers’ Market in July 2015.

According to planners, participants would buy a ticket for the food tour at the market and begin their delectable journey with tastings from various vendors. The guided tour would proceed through Historic Downtown with a mix of history and tastings from Medina’s many culinary offerings.

“Again, the tour is in the planning stages, but we’re very excited about it,” Miller said. “We see it as a springboard for day trip Medina and hope to have it up and running soon. It’s going to be such a great year of Summer Saturdays at the market and throughout downtown.”

A full slate of vendors and offerings are slated for opening day. Market patrons will see regular weekly vendors Baker Farm, Herbalty Cottage, Human Farms, Kim’s Kitchen Bakery & More, McB’s Farm, Nice Farms, Renko Sausage, Roberts’ Farm Market, SK Herefords beef, Stone Hollow Farm & Carriage House Bakery, Stymus Farms along with other special guests/rotating vendors, including the award-winning 810 Meadworks.

The 2018 summer market will see the return of the “Community Tent” and “Artisan’s Tent.”

“Last year, the Community Tent provided a place for local non-profits and community-based organizations to raise awareness about their particular programs and offerings,” Miller said. Opening day will see Medina Memorial Hospital and Cornell Cooperative Extension with the hospital offering information on various health-related issues. Cornell Cooperative Extension will feature advice from Master Gardeners.

Dawn Keppler of SK Herefords in Shelby cuts some beef for a sample of the farm’s meat in this photo from July 2015.

The Artisan Tent will have a very special local feature on opening day. Local musician and skilled craftsman, Aaron Grabowski, will be present with his blacksmith forge. Grabowski will demonstrate the forge and the making of hand-forged products of 18th century manor using his reproduction traveling blacksmith forge – all while clothed in 18th century garb. Grabowski was recently named a “Heritage Hero” for his local preservation work.

Chris Busch, president of the Renaissance Group, says the Canal Village Farmers’ Market is not just an opportunity for the public to shop for fresh-harvested local produce, but also to everything Historic Medina has to offer.

“Our goal at CVFM has been to do our part in making Downtown Medina absolutely alive on Saturday mornings,” Busch said.

The market is still interested in finding suitable artisans and musicians who might be interested in participating in the market. For additional information about visiting or participating in the 2018 Canal Village Farmers’ Market, visit them on Facebook or email Gail Miller at

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Medina celebrates opening visitor center at Rotary Park

Photos by Ginny Kropf: Officials cut the ribbon today dedicating a new Visitor’s Center in Medina. The Tourism Committee has taken over the Santa Claus house in Rotary Park, which will be open through Labor Day. From left are Dave Miller, volunteer; Kelly Kiebala, a member of the Tourism Committee; Linda Hansler, volunteer; Alfred Nixon, volunteer; Mayor Mike Sidari; Orleans County Tourism coordinator Dawn Borchert; Jim Hancock, head of the Medina Tourism Committee; and Maureen Sanderson, Pat Bellucci, Bob Farman, Gail Miller and Barb Filipiak , volunteers.

Posted 29 May 2018 at 10:06 pm

Santa Claus House now has a dual purpose

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent

MEDINA – The Medina Tourism Committee just may have found the perfect location with the move Tuesday into the Santa Claus House at Rotary Park.

The move was celebrated with a dedication and ribbon cutting by Medina Mayor Mike Sidari, Tourism Committee Chair Jim Hancock, Tourism Committee member Kelly Kiebala, Orleans County Tourism Coordinator Dawn Borchert and a handful of volunteers.

The first Visitor’s Center in the village was located about 10 years ago in the Chamber of Commerce Office on North Main Street. When that office closed, a Visitor’s Center was set up in City Hall on the south end of Main Street by the police station.

“That was not easily accessible with steep stairs, nor was it convenient for c anal travelers,” Hancock said.

Medina Mayor Mike Sidari, left, and Medina Tourism Committee Chairman Jim Hancock show off the inside of the Santa Claus House in Rotary Park, which will now also double as a Visitor’s Center.

This spring a volunteer asked if it was possible to use the Santa House, which is on the four corners and much closer to the canal basin.

“We went to the village and they enthusiastically agreed,” Hancock said. “We hope we will get more traffic here. In fact, we already had our first visitor this morning – from Reykjavik , Iceland.”

Hancock thanked the village officials for their cooperation in making the move possible. The Fire Department helped with the move and the Department of Public Works erected new signs.

The Visitor’s Center is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, but Hancock would like to see it open on Saturdays if more volunteers stepped forward.

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Medina floral business moves into bigger historic building on Main Street

Posted 29 May 2018 at 12:06 pm

Photo by Ginny Kropf: Mary Lewis, owner of Creekside Floral in Medina, arranges a bouquet in her store at 509 Main St. Creekside recently had a grand opening to celebrate its move to the historic building Lewis and her husband Jerry purchased.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent

MEDINA – Mary Lewis started in the florist business almost 12 years ago when she purchased Muchow’s Flower Shop. While it was her first venture as a store owner, she was not new to the world of flowers.

Lewis is a daughter of Donna Goldhawk of Lyndonville, who is a member of the Schwab family who have operated Schwab’s Farm Market near Gasport for years. Lewis grew up working on the family farm.

Muchow’s had originally been started decades ago by Luther Muchow on East Center Street. When Lewis purchased the shop, it was located in the former Moose building on West Avenue.

Lewis had taken courses in floral design in college and had worked at Muchow’s. When she purchased the business, she named it Creekside and moved into a building near the creek on Maple Ridge Road .

Her next move was to 422 North Main St., where the business grew. This spring, an opportunity arose for Lewis and her husband Jerry to further invest in Medina and purchase a historic building at 509 Main St., a location which 50 years ago was occupied by Goodwin’s Pharmacy.

With four small children at home, Mary has her hands full, but she is committed to the business she loves. She has a full staff of floral designers, all of whom she has trained to do what she does, said Jamie Wagner, a floral designer.

“We are all fortunate she has shared her talents with us,” said Wagner, who credits Lewis’s reputation for making the business successful.

The new location has an upstairs, where Lewis plans to have classes, such as fairy gardens and wreath-making at Christmas time.

Creekside Floral is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Lewis is always available by phone when needed.

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