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Orleans County

New recycling carts being distributed in Orleans County

Photos by Tom Rivers: The new 96-gallon recycling totes were delivered to parts of the Village of Albion today, including these ones on Chamberlain Street.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 12 June 2019 at 4:40 pm

ALBION – The new recycling carts are being distributed in Orleans County. There are about 15,000 to be delivered.

It will take about three weeks for Rehrig Pacific Company of Erie, Pa. to deliver them the 15,000 addresses in the county. The task will be completed by June 30, county officials said.

The new 96-gallon capacity wheeled cart are replacing 18-gallon bins. The new totes can be used right away.

The smaller bins can be kept by residents, or they can put them out to be taken by Modern Recycling. The bins should be labelled “Take Me” if residents don’t want them.

Modern said the bins can be handy to collect recyclables inside a house and then dumped into the cart.

The new recycling totes replace the smaller 18-gallon bins. The new totes have green covers to make it clear the totes hold recycling.

The county contracts with Modern for garbage and recycling pickup. The company will switch to every other week collection for recycling beginning July 1. Garbage will still be picked up weekly.

The County Legislature in February approved spending $776,500 for 15,444 recycling carts. Those costs are coming out of the fee in the county taxes for garbage and recycling for residents. The county is seeking a state grant for half of the costs. If the grant comes through, the county will use that to pay off a lease payment it took out to cover half of the expense.

The new carts, at $50.28 each, hold 96 gallons. Rehrig Pacific Company of Erie, Pa. is the contractor for the new totes.

Each tote has a number with bar code and an RFID so the totes can be tracked. Residents should write down their totes’ identification numbers to make sure they aren’t mixed up with their neighbors’.

The switch to the larger carts will make it easier for Modern Disposal to pick up recycling, and should hold off increases in the costs for picking up garbage and recycling for the next few years, county officials said.

For more information, click here.

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County celebrates completion of big addition to administration building

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 June 2019 at 9:56 pm

Employees will move into new space over the next month

Photos by Tom Rivers

ALBION – Orleans County officials held a ribbon-cutting and open house today for the new 23,000-square-foot addition to the County Administration Building.

The new addition will provide offices for about 50 county employees, as well as other meeting rooms and the Legislature’s chambers.

Orleans County Legislature Chairwoman Lynne Johnson cuts the ribbon for the new building. She is joined by County Legislators Bill Eick, left, and John DeFilipps. Gerald Summe, right, is executive vice president of Wendel. That firm served as construction manager for the project. Eick and DeFilipps were on the construction committee for the project, along with Chuck Nesbitt, the chief administrative officer.

The Information Technology department moved into the building about two weeks ago to get the computer system ready for the employees. The legislative staff and county administrative officer will move from the County Clerks’ Building to the new site the end of next week.

Then the Public Health Department will move from its space next to the nursing home. The Public Health Department works out of what used to be a wing for the nursing home. Many of those offices used to be rooms for nursing home residents. The setup isn’t efficient for a modern office, county officials said.

The Board of Elections also works out of a wing in the nursing home. The Board of Elections will move to the new building in early July, after the June 25 primary.

County Legislator Bill Eick, left, and Peter Houseknecht, the deputy highway superintendent, look out from the atrium in the second floor of the new building. The project included an expanded parking lot. About 60 spaces were added.

The county had a ground-breaking ceremony for the building on April 25, 2018. The Legislature approved a maximum bond of $10,063,881 for the addition the building on Route 31, behind the nursing home. The bond is expected to be about $6.5 million due to grants for the project. The county has already been approved for a $3,682,748 state grant towards the project and State Sen. Robert Ortt also secured a $200,000 state grant.

The larger grant includes funds to create space at the neighboring Mental Health Building for a primary doctor from Oak Orchard Health. Mental Health also has two therapists working out of Oak Orchard Health’s site on Route 31 in Albion. That building has a renovated office and entrance.

The Board of Elections and Public Health Department have been leasing space from Comprehensive Healthcare Management Services. Comprehensive purchased the former county-owned nursing home for $7.8 million in January 2014. The county has been leasing space from Comprehensive for Elections and Public Health because those offices are part of the nursing home complex.

Moving those offices from those sites will spare the county from paying those lease payments. The money the county was paying for the lease will go towards paying the debt for the addition.

A new meeting room can accommodate about 60 people, twice the room as the current meeting space for the County Legislature. It will hold its first session in the new meeting room on June 26.

County officials say the new space is much more accessible to the public. This is the view from the Legislature chairman’s spot.

Chuck Nesbitt, the chief administrative officer, leads a tour through the building, which includes a scanner to walk through as an added safety feature.

Stan Dudek, the retired chief administrative officer, gives Lynne Johnson positive feedback about the new facility.

The new building is connected to the original Administration Building. There are currently about 125 people working out of the original building for the Department of Social Services, Office for the Aging, Job Development, Tourism, Planning and Development, Department of Motor Vehicles, and Personnel.

Chuck Nesbitt shows a meeting room that is part of the suite for the Public Health Department.

This space will be used by the Board of Elections when that office moves over next month.

Lynne Johnson thanked residents and the county employees for their patience during the construction project.

She also thanked the contractors, including Holdsworth Klimowski Construction of Victor, which was the general contractor for the project. Suburban Electric of Albion did the electrical work for the new building.

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Albion students unveil panel that lists people buried in once-forgotten cemetery

Photos by Tom Rivers: Albion seventh-graders unveiled a new interpretive panel today at the cemetery off County House Road where 250 people are buried who lived at the former Alms House. Pictured from left include Iris Capurso, Kim Weese, Jack Kinter, Gina Sidari, S’Koi Sanders-Smith and Kayla Burgio.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 5 June 2019 at 3:04 pm

‘In today’s world we need to treat people with dignity and respect. We’re giving names to those who were perhaps not treated with dignity and respect.’ – County Historian Matthew Ballard

ALBION – An interpretive panel was unveiled today by Albion seventh-graders and Orleans County officials that lists the names of 250 people buried in a cemetery behind the former Orleans County Alms House on County House Road.

The seventh-grade service learning class at Albion, led by teacher Tim Archer, took the lead with getting the panel erected. The Daughters of the American Revolution contributed $750 towards the panel and the Orleans County Historical Association also donated $500 for the effort. The Orleans County Highway Department installed the panel.

This is the second big effort by Albion students at the site. About a decade ago the former cemetery was overgrown with sumac and weeds. The grave markers were toppled.

S’Koi Sanders-Smith speaks at the panel unveiling today. Bill Lattin, retired Orleans County historian, is at right.

Bill Lattin was the county historian about a decade ago when Archer’s class first worked on a project at the cemetery. Lattin shared in the class about the name of County House Road, how there used to be an Alms House at the site.

The Alms House opened in 1833 and closed in 1960, when the county infirmary or nursing home opened on Route 31, just west of the Village of Albion.

“The Orleans County Almshouse was the last refuge for old men and women too weak to work and take care of themselves,” Lattin wrote in the foreword of a booklet about the site in 2011. “It became a home for the homeless, friendless, orphan, vagrant, poor, sick, and mentally ill. Dependents, paupers, and even delinquents lived at the Orleans County Home on County House Road.”

Albion students and the county put up this marker for the cemetery in 2011, and also reset grave markers and cleared out brush.

Lattin’s classroom visit about a decade ago spurned Archer and his students to research the site, and work with the county officials to get the site cleaned up, and the stones reset. A historical marker was added by the road, letting people know about the Alms House. After the Alms House building were razed in 1962, the county repurposed the main part of the site for the Civil Defense Center. A fire training tower is next door.

The cemetery is in the back, surrounded by a corn field. When the cemetery was rededicated in 2011, 74 grave markers were reset.

Matt Ballard, the current Orleans County historian, has followed in Lattin’s footsteps as a frequent visitor in Archer’s classes, discussing local history.

Ballard recently made an exciting discovery. He found a ledger from the cemetery, which lists the names and dates of death for 250 people buried at the cemetery. The superintendents of the Alms House kept the ledger, and some of those superintendents added details about the lives of those buried in the cemetery.

Matt Ballard shows a ledger listing the names and dates of death for people buried at the cemetery. Some of the entries include a biographical sketch of the people who lived at the Alms House.

Ballard said the entries with details of the lives showed compassion and care from the superintendents, who wanted to list some of the contributions of those who were buried often in unmarked graves or with a stone and only a number.

Ballard left the ledger with the class and Archer and his students made a list of all the names and the dates of death. Those details are now on the interpretive panel by the cemetery.

“These are lives worth remembering,” Archer said at a dedication today. “A big part of what I try to emphasize with the kids is that every life has value.”

Ballard praised the school district for supporting a class that does many community service projects and has students “on the front lines working with local history.”

The panel includes the names of people buried at the cemetery. The panel also includes words from Lattin in the foreword of the 2011 booklet: “The names of those who rest here are long forgotten, but their existence deserves respect and reverence. They no longer can speak for themselves. Hence we must note that buried here is someone’s ancestor, a person once loved by those who cherished them in the rocking cradle and held trembling hand in sickness and old age at death’s beckoning. These bodies now dust, are lives worth remembering because of the interdependent web of existence and the inherent worth and dignity of every person.”

The cemetery is now well cared for by the county and is visible from Route 31A near Keeler Construction. Ballard is pleased to see the names of the people are now displayed, rather than a cemetery with only unmarked graves and numbers on stones.

“In today’s world we need to treat people with dignity and respect,” Ballard said. “We’re giving names to those who were perhaps not treated with dignity and respect.”

Lynne Johnson, Orleans County Legislature chairwoman, praised the students and the historians – Lattin and Ballard – for their efforts in honoring the people at the cemetery.

“Today we are here to properly pay tribute to those that are known to be buried in this quaint little cemetery, marked only by numbers but remembered as real people, in the middle of this productive farmer’s field,” Johnson said. “It takes many people to keep history alive.”

County Legislature Chairwoman Lynne Johnson thanked the Albion students and local historians for their work at the cemetery for the former Orleans County Alms House.

Gina Sidari hands out copies of a booklet about the cemetery that was first published in 2011. It has been updated with the names of people buried at the site. She hands the copies to from left Bill Lattin; Matt Ballard; Betty Sue Miller, director of Hoag Library; Penny Nice, regent of the Orleans County chapter of DAR; Patrice Birner, member of the Orleans DAR and state historian for the DAR; Tim Archer, the service-learning class teacher; and Don Allport, county legislator.

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Democrats announce endorsed candidates for 2019 election

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 5 June 2019 at 9:31 am

The Orleans County Democratic Party has announced its endorsements for candidates at the town and county level for the Nov. 5 election.

Fred Miller

The party is backing Fred Miller of Albion for another two-year term on Orleans County Legislature. He represents a district that includes the towns of Albion and Gaines.

Miller, owner of a hardware store in Albion, is the lone Democrat on the seven-member County Legislature. He was first elected to the Legislature in November 2013. Republicans haven’t run a candidate against him since then.

The Democratic Party endorsed the following for town offices:

• Albion – Darlene Benton and Terry Wilbert for town council positions, and Michael Neidert for highway superintendent.

• Barre – Luann Tierney for a town councilwoman, Maureen Beach for town clerk, and Rick Root for town justice.

• Kendall – Margaret Lynn Szozda for town councilwoman.

• Ridgeway – Michael Maak for town supervisor.

• Shelby – Darlene Rich for town clerk and Michael O. Fuller for highway superintendent.

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New group of entrepreneurs graduate from MAP class

Photos by Ginny Kropf: The graduating class of the latest Microenterprise Assistance Program gathered outside the Village Inn before dinner Tuesday night to see the mobile wood-fired pizza truck Brian and Rebecca Alexander of Albion propose to operate after graduating from the program.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 5 June 2019 at 7:35 am

Brian Alexander checks the temperature of the oven in his mobile wood-fired pizza truck during a demonstration for graduates of the latest MAP class.

ALBION – The latest class to graduate from Orleans Economic Development’s Microenterprise Assistance Program bring a wide variety of new business ideas to the table.

With Diane Blanchard as manager of the Microenterprise Assistance Program, nine of the 11 graduates shared their business plans during graduation Tuesday night at the Village Inn.

Also attending the graduation were Richard Petitte and Sam Campanella with the Small Business Development Center; Jon Costello, a SCORE mentor; County Legislator Ken DeRoller; and Paul Hendel, chairman of the Orleans Economic Development Agency.

A former graduate of the class, Laura Kemler, with her husband Kevin, talked to the class about how MAP helped her grow a successful business on Main Street in Albion, selling her hand-crafted, kitchen-inspired goods.

She advised graduates to use their mentors for advice.

“Find someone in your field who has gone before you,” she said. “Try and find wholesalers for all your products and make sure your customer service is stellar.”

Rick and Michelle Gallo of Holley, who graduated from MAP a year ago, were also on hand to share their good news. After taking the MAP class, they opened a very successful hauling business, and just a few weeks ago completed the purchase of a junkyard.

“Because of what I learned in the Microenterprise class, I wrote a business plan which blew the pants off my banker and we got a loan for the junkyard,” Michelle said.

Diane Blanchard, manager of Microenterprise Assistance Program, talks to Michael Blosenhauer of Holley prior to graduation ceremonies Tuesday at the Village Inn. Blosenhauer is hoping to open a grocery store in his home town in coming months.

Graduates who shared their business plans were Michael Blosenhauer of Holley, who hopes to open a grocery store in his home town; Joseph Quill, who wants to expand the diesel repair shop he runs in Barre Center with his son Mike; Missy Rusin of Brockport, who proposes to run a record keeping and consulting business for child care providers; Lorie Soule of Waterport, with 30 years of experience as a notary public, who proposes a notary-on-demand service;

Natasha Wasuck, who with her husband John Hernandez, is opening a wedding/event venue and ice cream parlor on the Erie Canal in Albion; Jennifer Beherns of Scottsville, who has 14 years experience in medical billing and wants to start her own ambulance billing service; Lauren Blair, who was employed at the Whole Approach Health and Wellness Center in Holley and has now purchased the business; James Kusmierczak of Medina, who discovered the benefits of hemp after having pancreatitis and now hopes to begin by selling it online, followed by the eventual opening of a brick and mortar store; and Rebecca and Kevin Alexander of Albion who have built a mobile wood-fired pizza truck.

The Alexanders brought their truck to the Village Inn, where MAP graduates got a first-hand look at the wood-fired oven and how as many as six pizzas can be cooked at once. They have used it in their back yard to cook everything from pizza to the Thanksgiving turkey, Rebecca said. They traveled to Colorado to learn the business and have spent the last six months perfecting their own recipes.

They plan to take the mobile pizza truck to farmers’ markets, private parties and special events.

Each of the graduates shared how much money they would need for start-up costs and what they hoped to borrow in low-interest loans.

Michael Webster and Dorothy Daniels also completed the MAP class but weren’t at the graduation ceremony.

Graduates of the recent Microenterprise Assistance Program posed for this picture during graduation ceremonies Tuesday at the Village Inn. Seated, from left, are Dick Petitte with the Small Business Development Center; Orleans Legislator Ken DeRoller; Diane Blanchard, manager of MAP; Sam Campanella with the Small Business Development Center; and Jon Costello, a certified SCORE mentor. At rear are, from left, Lorie Soule, Michael Blosenhaur, Jim Kusmierczak, Joe Quill, Jennifer Beherns, Natasha Wasuck, Rebecca Alexander, Lauren Blair  and Missy Rusin.

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Top 10 told small-town roots will serve them well

Medina’s Top 10 are lined up and ready to be recognized on Monday during the 33rd Annual Orleans County Academic Excellence Awards Dinner at Hickory Ridge. Students were recognized from Holley, Kendall, Lyndonville and Medina. Albion has a separate honors convocation dinner for students with a GPA at 90 or above. On May 20, 39 students were recognized at the Albion dinner.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 4 June 2019 at 12:51 pm

Dr. Kaci Schiavone was the keynote speaker at the 33rd annual Top 10 dinner on Monday at Hickory Ridge Golf Course and Country Club.

HOLLEY – The top 10 graduates at four school districts n Orleans County were told their small-town roots will serve them well as they head to the next stage of their lives.

Dr. Kaci Schiavone, a 2009 graduate from Holley, last year earned her medical doctorate degree from the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Buffalo. She is currently a general surgery resident physician at the University of Rochester.

Her training requires her to care for critically ill patients while engaging in multi-disciplinary surgical setting. Upon completing the five-year residency program, Schiavone will continue training in a more specialized surgical fellowship.

She admitted during her speech that she often wondered if she was ill-prepared for the rigorous coursework, especially compared to her classmates, who typically came from more affluent school districts or prep schools.

“You’re likely to meet many people who had very different upbringings than you had and they’ll lack the perspective you’ve garnered by being raised here,” Schiavone told about 200 people at the Top 10 dinner. “You may not realize it yet but there is immeasurable value in that perspective.”

More of her classmates drove luxury vehicles than had ever been to a farm.

“They predominantly went to large high schools where they didn’t know most of the students they graduated with,” she said. “And in the beginning of my life outside of high school, that made me feel like an outsider. It took me time to realize though that that difference was not something to make me feel inferior, but should be a point of pride.

“As a product of this place, you are all endowed with a deep sense of community. There is a feeling of belonging, an understanding that the people around you are all connected to you, and that they all play a role in your development as a person, no matter how small their role is.  That sense of community will guide you when you leave here and hopefully you will infect others with it as you interact with new people and places.”

Abrianna Kruger of Holley is congratulated for being in Holley’s Top 10. She is shaking hands with Lynne Johnson, chairwoman of the Orleans County Legislature. County Legislator Bill Eick is at left. Brian Bartalo, the Holley school district superintendent, is next to Johnson.

Schiavone said the seniors who are soon to graduate will see their lives speed up.

“You should be excited, but wherever it is you’re headed, remember where you came from,” she told the Top 10. “While I have spent every year since graduation in one city or another, I am so appreciative that I was raised out here, in the country.  I have met plenty of people – good people with good intentions – who have a hard time truly understanding what matters in life.”

Dr. Schiavone offered the Top 10 some advice if they are feeling overmatched in college or in their careers.

“If you find yourself in that position, I encourage you to do what I did: call your mom, take five minutes to cry, and then fight through it,” she said. “It may mean that you need to recalibrate, adjust, or just work a little harder, but you have already shown that you are smart and hardworking and that you have it in you to succeed.”

Her mother is Karri Schiavone, Holley’s elementary school principal. Her father Dan Schiavone is a dentist in Holley.

June Christensen, Kendall school district superintendent, hugs Morgan Davis, one of Kendall’s honor grads.

Kaci Schiavone urged the Top 10 to face adversity and challenges head on.

“Do not run away from it when it is no longer easy,” she said. “It is not meant to be. You don’t grow by taking on the easy tasks. And growth is really the meaning of life. It is what will keep your life interesting and will make you feel as if you are moving toward something. To that extent, you must treat your accomplishments as rest stops and less so as final destinations.”

Schiavone also highlighted her fiancé, Michael Pretsch, who graduated from Holley in 2007. He didn’t push himself too hard as a Holley student, but he has since graduated from law school and is a lawyer.

“It is important to use high school and the work you’ve put in so far as a foundation and not as a definition of who you are,” Schiavone said. “What you have attained to date will always be a part of you, but there will also be so much more.”

Anna Oakley of Kendall is congratulated by Lynne Johnson. Nadine Hanlon, president of the Kendall Board of Education, is next to Johnson.

The Top 10 at the four school districts include:

• Holley — Emily Bibby, Neila Hand, McKenzie Hill, Abrianna Kruger, Shawna Lusk, Madison Marsh, Gregory Morrill, Lexianne Seewagen, Anastasiya Yaroshchuk and Kristina Yaroshchuk.

• Kendall — Ryan Barrett, Ethan Billings, Jessica Coble, Morgan Davis, Matthew DiNatale, Michael Gardner, Peter Gilman, Hunter Menze, Anna Oakley and John Rath.

• Lyndonville — Justin Corser, Hannah Despard, Grace Hayes, Noah Heinsler, Tamara Huzair, Anna Lewis, Sage Moore, Natalie Ostrowski, Jocelyn Plummer and Carly-Grace Woodworth.

• Medina — Emma Baldwin, Alissa Blount, Jessica Granchelli, Margaret Griffin, Kaela Grosslinger, Kody Leno, Raymond Paull, Cora Payne, Jonathan Pietrafesa and Kali Schrader.

Grace Hayes of Lyndonville is greeted by Jason Smith, Lyndonville’s school district superintendent.

Margaret Griffin of Medina is congratulated by Mark Kruzynski, the district superintendent.

Anna Lewis of Lyndonville accepts her awards from Lyndonville school officials, including her father Ted Lewis (left), who is president of the Board of Education.

Cora Payne and Jonathan Pietrafesa of Medina look over the certificates and plaques they received for their academic excellence.

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Extension receives historic Johnny Appleseed tree

Posted 1 June 2019 at 8:04 am

Press release and photos from Cornell Cooperative Extension of Orleans County

Eric Andrews and Louisa Shiffer are shown with the tree they donated to Orleans County Cornell Cooperative Extension.

KNOWLESVILLE – Johnny Appleseed may not have originally planted his apple trees in Western New York, but Orleans County Cornell Cooperative Extension now has an original Appleseed tree on its grounds thanks to a donation from Albion native Eric Andrews.

The Cooperative Extension on Tuesday and Wednesday hosted Conservation Field Days, where every 6th grader in the county cycles through various ecologically themed stations. Andrews presented at one of the stations on Tuesday, introducing the students to the life and legend of Johnny Appleseed, then heading outside to have each class help dig and plant the apple tree.

“Our original idea was to create a scholarship program with these Johnny Appleseed trees as the award,” Andrews said. “First we wanted to see if there would be any public interest in the project, so we thought of Orleans CCE as a central location for planting the first one.”

Andrews is a local history and botany enthusiast, with a focused interest on heirloom varieties of fruits and vegetables.

“Eric is so passionate about the history and preservation of these heirloom varieties,” said Louisa Shiffer, Andrews’ long-time partner and co-presenter at Conservation Field Days. “He grows acres of some of the most obscure varieties of fruits and vegetables, saving seed each year to make sure these varieties are not lost.”

Andrews purchased the tree from Raintree Nursery in Morton, WA. The nurserymen at Raintree were able to trace the roots of this particular variety all the way to an old homestead in Ohio, where the original tree was planted by Johnny Appleseed sometime in the 1820s. Cuttings were taken from this original tree and grafted onto rootstocks to enable exact copies of the variety to be sold to anyone interested in a piece of the history and legend of Johnny Appleseed.

“We live in one of the best areas in the world for growing apples, and we should be proud of that,” Andrews said. “We thought with this project that we could generate interest in something that we do really well in Orleans County. Technology, computers, movies can happen anywhere, but we can grow the best apples in the world right here in Western New York.”

The tree is planted in a recently renovated area of a garden just east of the OCCCE office on Rt. 31 in Albion. A plaque describing the history of the tree will be placed next to it so fairgoers and participants can get a glimpse of the legacy of an early American icon.

Sixth graders from Clifford Wise Middle School in Medina break ground for the new apple tree.

The group fills in the hole after the tree is placed.

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Fairgrounds hosts 6th graders for 51st annual Conservation Field Days

Staff Reports Posted 31 May 2019 at 5:42 pm

Photo courtesy of Kristina Gabalski, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Orleans County

KNOWLESVILLE – Daena Ford of Braddock Bay Raptor Research returned this year with live raptors during the 51stannual Conservation Field Days at the Orleans County 4-H Fairgrounds. This phot shows students learning about a Merlin, a small falcon, which hunts small birds for food.

The Fairgrounds hosted the event on Tuesday and Wednesday with sixth-graders from all five districts in Orleans County.

They learn about conservation-related topics including the environment, wildlife, tick safety, wild edibles, raptors, bird migrations and other issues.

Mike Elam of the Orleans County Federation of Sportsmen teaches students about Lake Sturgeon with the help of materials from NY Sturgeon for Tomorrow.

Rachael Kiefer, a leader of an Orleans County 4-H dog club and member of the Orleans County 4-H Dog Program Development Committee, teaches students about dog handling, training and agility skills.

Students closely examine “fake” bagels in search of ticks as they learn about tick safety and avoiding Lyme Disease.

The US Fish and Wildlife Service shared many examples of macroinvertebrates – organisms large enough to be seen by the naked eye and lacking a backbone, which inhabit all types of running waters.

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Independence Party endorses Bourke for sheriff, others for town offices

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 31 May 2019 at 8:05 am

ALBION – Chris Bourke has secured the Independence Party line in his campaign to be Orleans County’s next sheriff. Bourke, the current undersheriff, is running for sheriff against Brett Sobieraski, a Rochester Police Department sergeant who lives in Kent. Randy Bower, the current sheriff, isn’t seeking re-election.

Bourke and Sobieraski will square off June 25 in a Republican Primary. Bourke also has the Conservative Party line in the Nov. 5 general election.

The Executive Committee of the Independence Party met April 6 in Albany and endorsed the following as Independence Party candidates, even though they are not enrolled members of the party:

Chris Bourke of Waterport for sheriff, a county-wide election.

In Murray, the Independence Party is backing Robert Miller for town supervisor, and Lloyd Christ and Neil Valentine for Town Board. There is also an opportunity to ballot on the June 25 primary for the town supervisor and a Town Council position.

Miller also faces a Republican Primary on June 25 against Joe Sidonio, while Christ and Valentine have been challenged in a Republican Primary by Dirk Lammes Jr. Sidonio and Lammes also are endorsed by the Conservative Party.

In Barre, the Independence Party endorsed Sean Pogue for town supervisor, and Bradlee Diesel and Margaret Swan for Town Board.

Those three face a general election challenge from independent “Citizens for Change” party candidates, including Jerry Solazzo for town supervisor, and Kerri Richardson and Cindy Burnside for Town Council positions. Richardson also is endorsed by the Conservative Party.  In addition, LuAnn Tierney is backed by the Democratic Party for a town council seat.

• There is also an Independence primary on June 25 in the town of Shelby which is part of the 144th Assembly District. Registered Independence Party members in Shelby can vote for a delegate to the Eighth Judicial District, either Darla Schultz Bubar or Ciara Haylett. Voters will also pick an alternate delegate, either Brian Michael or David Haylett Jr.

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Office for the Aging seeks volunteer drivers to take seniors to appointments

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 30 May 2019 at 4:12 pm

ALBION – The Orleans County Office for the Aging has started a new program matching volunteer drivers with homebound seniors who need transportation to medical appointments, the grocery store and social outings.

The OFA started the program on April 5 and now has 12 drivers and 20 riders. The agency wants to expand the program, said Susie Miller, assistant director. Drivers are entitled to mileage reimbursement and are under the county’s liability insurance.

Seniors often feel isolated and can become depressed and have their health deteriorate if they don’t get to appointments and connect with other people, Miller said.

The agency suggests riders make a $5 donation for trips within the county and $15 outside Orleans, but that isn’t required.

The Office for the Aging also is encouraging seniors to try the RTS public transportation.

For more information about the volunteer program, either as a driver or rider, contact the OFA at (585) 589-3191.

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