Saturday, February 28, 2009


The Gasport Lion Club will be selling hotdogs at Olcott's Swim for Sight, aka "Polar Bear Swim", on Sunday March 1st. Be sure to support your local organization while partying on the lake shore!


Senator Charles Schumer's staff sent along this news release...

The economic stimulus package will include approximately $550 million in direct education aid through the Title I and Special Education/IDEA federal formulas and $320 million for public school repair and construction, with Upstate New York estimated to receive a total of at approximately $865 million, according to the Congressional Research Service (CRS).

Congress is using several different formulas to deliver these critical funds to schools. These funds will be distributed using existing federal education funding formulas, such as the one used for Title I, No Child Left Behind and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and will be given in a way that gives states and districts the flexibility and tools they need to keep serving our children.

Schumer have pushed for a robust amount of funding in the infrastructure portion of the package to be dedicated to school repair and construction to jump start school modernization programs. These dollars will fund 21st Century classrooms that are energy efficient and provide the information technology and cyber infrastructure that will increase America’s competitiveness and give our students greater advantages in a global economy.

In addition, both the Senate and House bills include $79 billion in additional state fiscal relief funding, with $39 billion designated for local school districts, $15 billion to states as incentive performance grants, and $25 billion for other high priority needs such as public safety and education.

So, just how big is Roy-Hart's piece of the pie?

Special education & IDEA funding: $364,000

Title I Funding: $95,527

Sunday, February 22, 2009


In 2007, Chinese college student Quanzhi Ye discovered a new comet. That celestial body - Comet Lulin - will be making its closest approach to Earth this Tuesday morning. You'll need to get up nice and early to see it (or stay up late)...1:00 AM.
Here's a NASA story about the comet:

For detailed information about how to track the comet, visit

Unfortunately, the forecast for Monday night (Tuesday morning) is calling for mostly cloudy skies in Gasport.

Monday, February 16, 2009


Quite often it's difficult to have an audience with a state legislator. Not so this weekend.

Assemblywoman Jane Corwin, who serves Gasport on the Royalton side and was newly-elected in November, will be meeting with her constituents this Saturday, February 21st.

You can meet with her at the Roy-Hart High School auditorium between the hours of 10:00 AM and 1:00 PM.

For more information, visit her website:


From the pages of the Buffalo News...

Thomas D. Yarger, already facing possible prison time on two felonies, pleaded guilty to two more last week in Niagara County Court. Yarger, 30, of Hope Lane, Wrights Corners, admitted to two counts of attempted second-degree burglary for breaking into houses on Davison Road in Lockport on Oct. 11 and on Humphrey Road in Hartland four days later. Deputy District Attorney Doreen M. Hoffmann said the deal called for Yarger to confess to several other unsolved burglaries in Niagara County.


Friday, February 13, 2009


The Great Backyard Bird Count is an annual four-day event that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of where the birds are across the continent. Anyone can participate, from beginning bird watchers to experts. It takes as little as 15 minutes on one day, or you can count for as long as you like each day of the event. It’s free, fun, and easy—and it helps the birds.

Participants count birds anywhere for as little or as long as they wish during the four-day period. They tally the highest number of birds of each species seen together at any one time. To report their counts, they fill out an online checklist at the Great Backyard Bird Count web site.

As the count progresses, anyone with Internet access can explore what is being reported from their own towns or anywhere in the United States and Canada. They can also see how this year's numbers compare with those from previous years. Participants may also send in photographs of the birds they see.

In 2008, participants reported more than 9.8 million birds of 635 species. They submitted more than 85,000 checklists, an all-time record for the count.

For more information, visit:


Spend the weekend with your sweetheart sampling chocolates paired with wine at ten wineries. Each ticket includes a wine tasting at each winery, a commemorative wine glass and chocolates at each winery. Tickets are $20 per person.

For more info visit:

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Meghan's Fund, consulted by Rainbow of Help, Inc., is holding a chinese auction on March 8th at Terrys Corner Firehall 7801 Chestnut Ridge Rd (Rt 31), Gasport, NY 14067. Doors open at 1pm with drawings beginning at 4pm.

All proceeds from the auction will go to help cover medical expenses for Meghan Redenbach. Meghan was diagnosed with Fibro Sarcoma, an extremely rare form of ovarian cancer. There are only 30 documented cases of this cancer diagnosed in the United States. Meghan is the second child ever diagnosed. She will have to go through chemotherapy every three weeks fore the next 9 months at Roswell Cancer Institute in Buffalo.

Meghan is 13 and is in the 8th grade at Royalton Hartland Middle School. She is very active in basketball, volleyball, and softball. She lives in Gasport with her dad Mike, mom Nancy and older brother Nick.

The chinese auction will have hundreds of baskets, live auctions, raffles, food and refreshments. We are looking for donations of pizza to sell in the kitchen the day of the event. If you are able to donate pizzas please contact Mel Hagie at 772-7654 or .

Baskets donations are also being accepted. They can be dropped of at the Village of Middleport Town Hall, or by contacting Carole George 772-7834 or, or Shelly Ratzel 688-8795 or Cash donations can be made at any First Niagara Bank or at

One of Meghan's favorite quotes: "Anyone can give up, it's the easiest thing in the world to do. But to hold it together when everyone else would understand if you fall apart.. that is true strength."

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


From the pages of the Lockport Union Sun and Journal...

MIDDLEPORT — Kevin MacDonald is coming back to the Royalton-Hartland School District in a new position.

Superintendent of schools.

MacDonald was hired Tuesday as the next district chief at Roy-Hart by the Board of Education. MacDonald will replace Paul Bona, who is retiring in June after 10 years at the district’s helm. MacDonald will take over superintendent duties July 1 with a three-year contract at an annual salary of $143,000.

Currently the assistant superintendent at Orleans/Niagara Board of Cooperative Educational Services, MacDonald was one of three final candidates the board chose from a pool of applicants. The five-month search came down to MacDonald; Joseph Hochreiter, deputy superintendent of the Elmira School District; and York Central School District Superintendent Thomas Manko.

BOCES Superintendent Clark Godshall served as search consultant for Roy-Hart. The search included a public forum for each candidates, as well as two public forums about what the public would like to see in a superintendent. Those forums were held earlier in the school year.

“We were pleased with the search and impressed with the candidates,” Board President Patricia Riegle said. “But we felt Kevin had the experience that we need at this time.”

A Lockport native, MacDonald went to the state University College at Fredonia after graduating from high school. He received a bachelor’s degree in social studies education and a minor in political science.

MacDonald landed a position in the Lewiston-Porter School District, teaching both advanced placement and 12th grade economics, as well as ninth grade global studies. Four years later, MacDonald became teacher on special assignment and assistant principal. Aside from handling student discipline, MacDonald was also in charge of certain student groups, such as student council. MacDonald then moved on to Roy-Hart, where he became principal at the junior high school. Four months into his new position, MacDonald was appointed junior/high school principal when the high school principal left.

In 2000, MacDonald joined the superintendent development program at SUNY Oswego. Later, MacDonald became director of alternative education at Erie 1 BOCES. After a very short time, MacDonald was recruited for his current position at Orleans/Niagara BOCES.

“I’m excited,” MacDonald said. “The process was very transparent. It was rigorous. I’m excited to come back and serve.”

MacDonald said that while he still has a job to do until July, he will keep in contact with Bona and stay up to speed with things going on in the district.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


WASHINGTON - Congressman Chris Lee (NY-26) today announced that the Gasport Chemical Hose Company has been awarded $75,412 in federal funding to help enhance its services to the community. Gasport intends to use these resources to acquire state-of-the art protective gear and communications equipment.

Scott Seib, deputy fire chief for the Gasport Chemical Hose Company, commented on the grant announcement: “With this much needed money we will be updating our turn out gear to the newest standard. It will include new hoods, gloves and boots as well. We will also be getting new pagers to alert our members and they will operate on Niagara County’s new UHF radio system. And to be compliant with state law, we will be ordering 20 escape kits for our interior firefighters. We appreciate Congressman Lee’s support and look forward to working with him in the future.”

Congressman Lee added: “Our firefighters and first responders represent the finest our community has to offer. I am pleased that this grant will help ensure Gasport has the resources it needs to keep the community safe. This grant is a recognition of the hard work and dedication of Deputy Chief Seib and his team.”

This funding is being awarded under the Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program. The AFG awards aim to enhance the ability of first responders to protect the health and safety of the public as well as that of their own personnel. Congressman Lee is a strong supporter of the program, which uses a competitive process overseen by experts to award those applicants whose requests best address the program’s priorities.

Sunday, February 8, 2009



To the Community and all the volunteers, parents, Scouts and Can and bottle drive participants.

Thanks to you all, we went Over The Top !

You are helping us "Change the World one nickel at a time"

The unofficial count was a whopping 28,200 ,about 4,000 more than our best. We packed the truck full and called the recyclers bring another truck,,,,,Wow

The Wagner Children and the Boy scouts thank you for coming out in force and making this the best drive ever.

Don't forget, the Scouts will continue to take your cans and bottle donations every Mon from 6:30-8:00 just drop them off at the Scout house walkway.

Boy Scout Troop 23


The New York State Agricultural Society honors families dedicated to farming, stewardship and community involvement in New York, and a Gasport farm recently was one of two local farms named “Century Farms,” in continuous family ownership and operation for more than 100 years.

Becker Farms received the honor, along with Amos Zittel & Sons in Eden. Both families received a proclamation signed by Gov. David A. Paterson, as well as an exterior farm sign. The award is sponsored by Farm Credit Northeast AgEnhancement.

Becker Farms was established by Julius and Augusta Becker in 1894. The first two generations raised a variety of farm products, including chickens, cows, pigs and the field crops to feed them; also raising and selling apples, peaches, plums, pears and cherries.

Second-generation farmer Frank Becker had no sons, and the farm went to his daughter, Joyce. Her husband, Don Perry, kept the farm going on a part-time basis as he worked at General Mothers. He added tart cherries, which were mechanically harvested.

Over the first three generations, the farm acreage had grown to 340 acres, 200 of it tillable. In 1980, the fourth generation, Don & Joyce’s daughter, Melinda, took over the farm operation along with her husband, Oscar Vizcarra. Both are Cornell University graduates who continue working the farm today with their two grown children, Amanda and Andres. With the couple’s education and Oscar’s background from Lima, Peru, and a New York City influence, they have transformed the farm to a retail, pick-your-own and agrientertainment location. Activities include the Pumpkin Fiesta, Haunted Hayride and school tours for 14,000 children annually. Upon Amanda’s return from Alfred in 2004, they started a winery. Andres returned to the farm last spring from RIT with a degree in illustration and is in charge of creative needs for the farm, in addition to a wide variety of other duties.

Saturday, February 7, 2009


Royalton-Hartland Business and Professional Association will meet at 8 a.m. Wednesday at Darrell’s Restaurant, corner Kelly Avenue and Route 31, Middleport. Members will be reviewing the feedback from the recent speed marketing event and the club’s 2009 membership goals.

The RHBPA meets at 8 a.m. the second Wednesday of the month at Darrell’s Restaurant. Local business owners and professionals are encouraged to attend. For more information, call Julie Maedl at 735-7631.


I caught this item in LynnMarie Donner's weekly column and blog (both of which are must reads!):

The class of 1979 at RoyHart High School has started planning for their 30 year class reunion. For former students that means the committee is looking for you. Your classmates names, addresses, email addresses and telephone numbers are needed. If you are, or know of a member of the class of 1979, please contact Dottie (Keirn) Barr at with current information. Attention: The reunion committee has a date to hold, so mark your calendar for August 1st, 2009 with a soiree at Vizcarra Vineyards on Quaker Road in Gasport, NY the plan is Dinner at 7pm and music and merriment at 8pm.


Many who visit this site come here to quickly read the articles and they miss the comments icon that is found at the bottom of every article. Most of the time, the various articles don't get comments. But, sometimes they do, especially if it involves Roy-Hart. It's an issue people truly care about.

Make it a point to scroll down this page and read the great discussion going on in the comments section of the post "ROY-HART MAY SEE 13% TAX INCREASE"


Every spring the Niagara County Soil & water Conservation District sells DEC-raised saplings for local residents to plant for use in conservation projects and lawns. Last year alone, over 60,100 trees were distributed across the county. Heck, I planted over 200 trees on our spread last year.

It's a really great program for two reasons...

1) It gives you access to many different species of trees and shrubs suitable for a wide variety of soil. So, there's trees available for any conservation project you may have, like: creating a hedgerow, planting foodstuff for birds & mammals, starting a woodlot, stifling erosion, improving your lawn and more.

2) It's cheap. You could never buy these types and amounts of trees from a local nursery without paying an arm and a leg. These trees are a great buy.

The order form is available here:

Friday, February 6, 2009


Nearly $9,000 worth of power tools were reported stolen from a garage in the 4400 block of Grace Avenue, Niagara County sheriff’s deputies said Monday. The 38-year-old victim said he rarely uses his power tools in the winter, but went out to the garage because he was going to help a friend do a construction job this week and found many of the tools missing from the detached garage. Entry appears to have been made by jimmying the lock, the man told deputies. Missing are a cordless drill, saws, a generator, diamond blades, tampers and various Snap-on tools.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


The Roy-Hart girls basketball team takes on Wilson tonight at Roy-Hart. You can catch all the excitement on WLVL at 1340 AM or online at Coverage starts at 7:00. This game has palyoff implications.


Legalized snowmobiling on the towpath will not happen.

As mentioned here last week, Middleport is not onboard with the plan for a trail from Day Road in Lockport to Marshall Road in Medina. Now, the town of Lockport is against it, announcing yesterday that property owners along the Canal had expressed far too many concerns about the traffic.


The Daily News of Batavia reports....

BATAVIA — A 29-year-old man suffered burns to his head, face, neck and hands in a fire that destroyed a barn Monday afternoon at 9161 Wilkinson Rd., Genesee County sheriff’s deputies said.

James Putnam Jr., 29, of Gasport, who was working inside the structure, was transported by a City of Batavia Fire Department Ambulance to Erie County Medical Center Burn Unit in Buffalo.

The fire was reported to the Genesee County 911 center about 12:35 p.m. Arriving firefighters from the East Pembroke Volunteer Fire Department found fire coming from a 28-foot by 50-foot storage barn/workshop owned by Gabriele J. Miller of the Wilkinson Road address. Firefighters from the East Pembroke, Town of Batavia, Darien, Alexander, Corfu, Oakfield and Elba Volunteer Fire Departments were able to extinguish the blaze before it spread to an unattached house. The storage barn/workshop and its contents were destroyed.

A preliminary investigation into the cause and origin of the fire indicates that it was accidental and the result of the work that was being performed inside the workshop at the time of the fire. The investigation was conducted by members of the East Pembroke Volunteer Fire Department, Genesee County Office of Emergency Management and the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office.