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Young riders get tips for racing at Crusaders Motorcycle Club

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 16 June 2018 at 3:16 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

RIDGEWAY – Braelyn DiMatteo is in front of the line with this group of riders during today’s training class at the Crusaders Motorcycle Club. The Crusaders have been holding a free training session for riders, ages 4 to 8. This is the third year the Crusaders have held the clinic at the race track on Culvert Road.

The class provides young riders with basic riding/racing skills. The 22 participants are being taught what all the different colored flags represent, how to watch for the green race light and to practice their starting skills.

The riders are learning how to maneuver around the corners. By the end of the day, all the riders are expected to pick up their speed. The 50cc bikes go about 20 to 30 miles per hour in the races.

Besides teaching safety and riding skills, the Crusaders want to boost the number of new riders. The first year of the training class, there were six riders and then 12 last year.

Brad Hazel, 28, is one of the track’s top riders. He helped lead the class today.

“We’re teaching them riding techniques,” Hazel said. “We’re trying to get them in the sport so we can show them it’s not as dangerous as people think.”

Hazel’s son Bryson, age 5, is one of the riders in the class today.

“If you start ’em young and get their technique when they are young, it will really help them in the long run,” Hazel said.

Kevin Hazel, president of the Crusaders, watches the riders and shouts encouragement. He encourages the young riders to keep their elbows up, look ahead and concentrate on the racetrack. Kevin is Brad Hazel’s father.

After a short break, Danny Shuler gets his helmet back on and is ready to ride.

These riders head off the track after taking a few laps.

Amy Hazel, center, and Brandi DiMatteo pass out popsicles during a break. The temperatures have been in the mid-80s.

The Crusaders kick off their 61st racing season on Sunday with the first race at 12:30. There are usually about 500 spectators and 130 riders for each of the five races at the track.

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Bullard Park hosts first Color Fun Run as fundraiser for Class of 2019

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 16 June 2018 at 11:49 am

Photos by Tom Rivers

ALBION – Chase Froman is doused in colored corn starch during this morning’s Color Fun Run at Bullard Park. The Albion Class of 2019 organized the fundraiser with help from the Albion Running Club.

There were 75 participants and they could run the 1-mile loop up to three times.

This was the first time a Color Fun Run was in Orleans County. The events are popular ar Darien Lake and bigger city venues.

Gina Sidari, an Albion sixth grader, leads a pack of her friends at one of the stations. Gina won the award for “most colorful.”

These Albion High School students are at the beginning of the Color Fun Run before they were covered in corn starch.

Eleanor Oliver of Spencerport was one of the youngest participants.

Connor McQuillan gets colored up at the finish line.

Pam Allen strikes a pose at the finish. She did the event with her daughter, Trinity.

Alyce Miller and several of her friends and family enjoyed the Color Fun Run.

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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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Albion Elementary celebrates Flag Day, good citizens

Posted 15 June 2018 at 10:47 am

Photos courtesy of Albion Central School: Kamryn and Kendall Peruzzini escort their great-grandfather Ron Ayrault into the Flag Day assembly on Thursday. He is seen wearing his Navy uniform. He served during the Korean War.

ALBION – The Albion Elementary School’s annual Flag Day assembly was celebrated on Thursday. Sixty-five veterans and active duty service men and women attended the assembly as invited guests.  Students that invited veteran family members and friends to the ceremony escorted them into the assembly.  Prior to the event, veterans submitted photos while serving their Country.  The photos were used to create a video that was shown as they entered the assembly.

The entire school recited the Pledge of Allegiance and sang “The Star Spangled Banner” and the “Albion Alma Mater.”  The elementary honors band performed patriotic selections for the crowd including “Legacy of Heroes” and “All Hail the Conquering Hero.”

Each grade level performed their own patriotic song that they learned during music classes. Kindergarteners sang “Our Beautiful Flag,” first graders sang “America,” second graders sang “God Bless America,” third graders performed “There Are Many Flags,” fourth graders sang “You’re A Grand Old Flag,” and fifth graders sang “Fifty Nifty United States.”

Each classroom selected students as flag bearers and lead the procession into the assembly. These students are in line and waiting for the assembly to begin.

Students process into the assembly.

Steve Ames is escorted into the assembly by his grandchildren Alysa and Tyler Ames.

Phil Warne is escorted into the assembly by his granddaughter Ella Froman. Ron Brown is joined by his grandson Caleb Wolfe.

Alilyah Lissow reads her winning poem to the audience.

All students could enter a Flag Day Poem contest. Over 200 entries were submitted and judged. The grade level winners read their poems during the ceremony. Winners are pictured in the front row, from left: Kasia Robinson (second grade), Sawyer Whittier (first grade) and Madysin Austin (kindergarten). Back row: Alilyah Lissow and Camryn London (fifth grade), Eden Diehl (third grade), Abigail Kincaid (fourth grade).

Fifth grade student Adrian Figueroa-Fuentes also was recognized with an art award. He won the poppy poster contest and received the Patrick DiGirolamo Award for advanced art.

Kindergarten students sing “Our Beautiful Flag.”

Wendy Whiting, a representative from the NYS Attorney General’s Office, presented the “Triple C” award to, from left: Ava Woolston, Kaiden Froman and Rori Higgins. The Triple C Award celebrates students who display courage, character and commitment in their daily lives at home and in school. This award is presented each year during the Flag Day assembly.

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Albion kicks off concert series by canal

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 15 June 2018 at 10:29 am

Photos courtesy of Kim Pritt

ALBION – The Ghost Riders performed Thursday evening to start Albion’s Concerts on the Canal. Bands will perform every Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m. at gazebo behind the Albion Fire Department on Platt Street.

New this year the Albion Canalside Cruise night will be held during the concerts.

The Albion Fire Dept. will be selling food and beverages at each of the concerts. This photo shows from left: Jim Peruzzini, Al Cheverie, Fred Piano and Matt Francis.

The concert series is sponsored by the Village of Albion and the Rhode Island Foundation with support from the Decentralization Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and administered by the Genesee Orleans Regionals Arts Council.

The lineup for the rest of the series includes:

• June 21: Jonesie & the Cruisers (Classic Rock)

• June 28: The Lonely Ones (Folk/Americana)

• July 5: Who Dats (Classic Dance Rock)

• July 12: Blind Leading the Blind (Contemporary Rock)

• July 19: The Dave Viterna Group (Classic Rock, Oldies, Blues)

• July 26: Triple Play Bank (Classic Rock)

• August 2: Creek Bend (Bluegrass)

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Video shows Holley candidate forum

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 15 June 2018 at 9:27 am

Photo by Tom Rivers: Six candidates running for the Holley Village Board were part of a candidate forum on Wednesday evening at the Holley Junior-Senior High School Auditorium. Pictured up front include mayoral candidates Shawn O’Mara and Brian Sorochty, and trustee candidates Connie Nenni, Alexa Downey, Robyn Schubmehl and Kevin Lynch. Michael Bonafede served as moderator and Sandy Heise, Krista Wiley, Chris Sartwell and Judith Koehler were question screeners.

A video of Wednesday’s candidate forum for the Holley is now available on the Lake Country Media YouTube channel by clicking here.

The Lake Country Pennysaver and Orleans Hub sponsored the forum on Wednesday at the Holley Junior-Senior High School Auditorium.

The video is 1 hour, 32 minutes and shows candidates giving opening and closing statements, and responding to questions submitted by the audience.

The candidates for the election on Tuesday include Shawn O’Mara and incumbent Brian Sorochty for mayor; and Alexa Downey and Robyn Schubmehl for village trustee, challenging incumbents Connie Nenni and Kevin Lynch.

Voting is from noon to 9 p.m. at the village office.

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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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Lyndonville band plays world premiere of new composition at elementary concert

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 15 June 2018 at 7:34 am

Photo by Tom Rivers

LYNDONVILLE – Lyndonville Elementary band teacher John Bailey, front left, is pictured with composer Robert Grice of Florida on Thursday evening before the band’s spring concert.

Grice wrote a new composition – “Industrial Revolution: The Rise of a Nation” – that was performed for the first time by the Lyndonville band.

Bailey last year was the first winner of Lyndonville’s Educator of the Year, which came with a $1,000 award for Bailey to use at his discretion to promote education. He wanted to have a new song written for the band.

He reached out to Grice, who has 140 published works. Grice also worked 30 years as a school band teacher. Click here for more on Grice.

Grice thought about Lyndonville and Western New York, and the region’s role in the Industrial Revolution and the country’s growing economic power about two centuries ago. He wrote parts for the percussionists to sound like factories working. He is hopeful the composition will catch on with more bands.

Whenever it’s performed again, the music should indicate it had its world premiere in Lyndonville, NY.

John Bailey, the Lyndonville band teacher, said he and the students are thrilled to be the first group to play the composition.

“It’s really cool,” he said before the concert. “We get to do a world premiere.”

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Lyndonville vets give 2,300 faded flags a proper disposal

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 14 June 2018 at 10:43 pm

Photo by Tom Rivers

LYNDONVILLE – Steve Goodrich, commander of the Houseman-Tanner American Legion Post 1603, puts faded and torn flags in a pig roaster this evening, when the flags were retired and given a proper disposal at Lynhaven Cemetery.

“I’d rather see a bare flag pole than one with a flag that is ripped or tore up,” Goodrich said.

Three veterans from the American Legion – Joe Hausler, Carl Boyle and Steve Goodrich – burned 2,300 of the American flags. Most of them have been collected the past five years. They are typically the flags the veterans put out just before Memorial Day at about 500 graves for veterans. They usually become faded or ripped by about Veterans’ Day in November.

Goodrich holds a flag he has kept for 23 years. It was flown in South Carolina at the Naval Hospital Beaufort. He was given the flag on his last day of active duty. He served in the Navy for 10 years.

Goodrich said the flag became faded in the center and the seams ripped. He said the flag should have been retired a few years ago but he couldn’t bear to part with it.

“There is a time to let go,” he said. “Now is the time.”

Carl Boyle gives these flags a dignified disposal.

Joe Hausler retires some of the flags, which were “destroyed with honor.”

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Knowlesville lift bridge is back in business

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 14 June 2018 at 9:13 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

RIDGEWAY – The Knowlesville lift bridge, which was closed last November, is back open to traffic.

The bridge was closed in November after an inspection and engineering analysis identified the need to close the bridge immediately for steel repairs.

The truss-style lift bridge was built in 1910. It is posted with a maximum weight of 6 tons. Approximately 1,100 vehicles use this canal crossing daily, the state Department of Transportation said.

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