Tuesday, February 26, 2013


The Gasport Beautification Committee is having a "Free Movie Night" for the community during Spring Break. They will be showing the original "Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" on Wednesday, April 3rd at the Gasport Fire Company. Doors open at 6:00pm and the movie will start at 6:30pm. They will have many items for sale at their snack bar, including a special family pack -- 12 items for $10.00.

Sunday, February 24, 2013


The New York State Championships in high school wrestling took place at the Times Union Center in Albany yesterday. Roy-Hart senior Drew Hull won the state title at 145 pound weight class after beating Frank Garcia. Hull won with a score of 2-0. He was state runner up in the 2012 State Championships.

Congrats Drew!


Real estate transaction records published in the Buffalo News over recent weeks show that 2 local farms have bought nearly $340,000 of land recently, all of it in Gasport north of the canal. That's great news. That means the land isn't going to be developed and sprawl won't be creeping into our community. They are maintaining our agricultural heritage and Gasport's greatest economic engine.  

Saturday, February 23, 2013


There has been a mass die-off of starlings in Gasport.

I came home yesterday to an eerie sight: My lawn was littered with dozens of dead and dying starlings, some actually falling out of the sky. So far, the body count is up to 80 in my yard.

Other area residents are experiencing the same. Look under your taller spruce trees as the sickened birds go to them for warmth and protection as the die.

This isn't the result of a disease. Nor is it some sign from an angry God related to the recent blizzards in the northeast or meteors exploding over Russia. It's a man-made affliction.

Starlings are a pest, an invasive species brought to the US in the 1800's to fill the world with all the birds mentioned in Shakespeare's plays (seriously). They have become one of the most abundant birds in agricultural and urban America and have been harmful to the populations of other cavity dwellers (like bluebirds).

The USDA has poisoned or allowed poisoning of starlings in an effort to assist dairy farmers in getting rid of these birds which frequent barnyards, stealing feed meant for cows and pooping in the feed, making cows and calves sick.

Thursday, February 21, 2013



Business First has an article out today that looks at Department of Education data regarding the spending per pupil for the 98 school districts across WNY.

Which districts are the most frugal?
Lancaster spent the least at $12,894 per pupil in 2011. Frontier, which spent $13,606 per student, was second.

Who came in third? Royalton-Hartland....$13,995 per student.

Read the report here:



The Professing Christ Rodeo Association (PCRA) will be having another rodeo in Gasport this coming Sunday, February 24th. Start Time is 1:00 pm, when Cowboy Church leads off the festivities.

Admission is $7 at the door. Kids 7 years and under are free.

The rodeo will be held at Seventeen Forever Farms at 4575 Royalton Center Rd.

Events include bull riding, barrel racing, breakaway pen roping and team penning.

Their Facebook event page can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/events/467056053355743/

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Monday, February 18, 2013


Who knew we had real honest-to-goodness rodeos in Gasport?

I didn't.

Come to find out, the Professing Christ Rodeo Association -- which was founded in 2003 -- counts Gasport amongst its stops.

According to the PCRA Facebook it is based on God and family and...We strive to bring top notch action at a family level! At the end of the season only one cowboy or cowgirl will finish in the #1 spot, and they are crowned PCRA series Champion! A title that everyone is proud to have! The race for the buckle is always exciting and awesome to see as the top cowboys and cowgirls battle it out for a whole season, facing some of the toughest stock going down the road today! Come and join us as we go down the road with the Professing Christ Rodeo Assoc. God bless and always trust in our Lord Jesus Christ! 

What caught my attention with this was a You Tube video showing a bull ride in Gasport. Good stuff!!

Previous Facebook event pages show the PCRA rodeos taking place at Seventeen Forever Farms on Royalton Center Road.

Count me as someone who'd like to check this out in the future!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


Petty Officer 1st Class Jonathan Hugaboom made a surprise visit to the Royalton-Hartland Elementary School Tuesday afternoon, catching his daughter Kenzie off guard. Hugaboom had been overseas for about a year, save for a short visit in October, before returning home Tuesday.

Read the local papers' report on the event here:

Better yet, watch the emotional video footage of the homecoming here, courtesy of the Lockport Union Sun and Journal:

Saturday, February 9, 2013


In tonight's newscast, WGRZ reported on the snow totals across WNY as a result of Friday's storm.

Which locale came in at #1?

Why, Gasport, of course, with 18".

Read the rest of the list here:


Wednesday, February 6, 2013


The Lockport Union Sun and Journal has a long history of running the "Page One Valentines" contest every February, ultimately recognizing 2 local teens who best represent Americana --- well-rounded kids that parents would love for their kids to date.

Each day until February 11, the newspaper will print a coupon with the names and photos of this year’s Page 1 Valentine finalists. Readers can vote on their favorite and return the coupons to the Union-Sun & Journal offices at 170 East Ave., either in person or by mail. Readers can vote as many times as they wish, but only original coupons clipped from the paper will be accepted; no photocopies or email votes will be allowed. Vote for only one girl and boy; entries received with more than one girl or boy checked will be discarded. The entries will be counted and the winners will be announced on Valentine’s Day.

Roy-Hart has 2 representatives on the ballot this year. They are Emily Kress and Nicholas Morse.

Read their bios here: http://lockportjournal.com/local/x1303541550/Meet-your-Page-1-Valentine-candidates

Make it a point to vote for these 2 worthy candidates and make our school proud!


The Hartland United Methodist Church on Ridge Road in Gasport will be having a pancake and sausage dinner from 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM on Tuesday, the 12th. This dinner is open to the public.

This is in celebration of Shrove Tuesday -- more commonly known as "Pancake Tuesday" or "Fat Tuesday", the day before Ash Wednesday and the start of Lent.

Pancakes are associated with the day because they were a way to use up rich foods such as eggs, milk, and sugar, before the fasting season of the 40 days of Lent. The liturgical fasting emphasized eating plainer food and refraining from food that would give pleasure: In many cultures, this means no meat, dairy, or eggs.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013


The Board of Education will be holding a series of budget workshops at 5:30 p.m. on February 7, 14 and 28 in the high school media center. All workshops are open to the public.


Royalton-Hartland is a powerhouse when it comes to swimming. Coach Bruce Matthews and his assistant Pete Smith have led the Roy-Hart boys swim team to 7 straight N-O titles and 98 consecutive wins.

The Lockport Union Sun and Journal looks at the awesomeness of the current team and past teams:


Sunday, February 3, 2013


Royalton residents: Modified recycling begins this week. Starting this Wednesday, February 6th you can wheel your fancy new recycling carts out to the roadside every other week.

Don't forget that the town is divided in half for the bi-weekly pickups. This week, those in Sector B (everyone north of Chestnut Ridge Road) receive their pick-up. Next week, those who live in Sector A (Chestnut Ridge Road and all points south) see their pickups begin.

Saturday, February 2, 2013


11:00-2:30 Library for...

Basket Auction
Door Prize (32" TV)
Silent Auction(4 Buffalo Sabres tickets)


11:30 “In Jest” with Nels Ross
12:45 The Magic Weiland’s Tony & Jake
1:30 Nickel City Reptiles & Exotics with Jeff Musial


11:00-3:00 House of Bounce
11:30-1:30 Mr. No the Balloon Guy
2:00-4:00 Mr. Paul the Balloon Guy
2:45 Irish Dancers with Brooke & Erica Little and Mya Quinn (and @ 12:30 café’ area)


11:30-2:30 Carriage rides front circle
Siberian Husky Club-Dog Sled Demonstration

Ongoing events...

Face painting & crafts for kids-Café’
Masons Safety ID Program-Art room

Food Vendors in Cafe...

Chops Shop Pizzeria
Maedl’s Woodcrafts
Alternative Grounds
Schwab’s Farm Market


In today’s (2/1/13) edition of the Union Sun and Journal is an article about an incident surrounding the Royalton Hartland School District girls’ basketball team.  There was a piece in the article that has led to some confusion about what occurred. It was quoted that Board of Education President Patty Riegle said “If someone came up to me and reported that someone got raped in a bathroom, by law I have to tell someone.” This has led people to believe that the incident with the girls’ basketball team involved a rape, which is absolutely untrue. This comment was made to list an example of a type of action that would give rise to mandated reporting but was not made to comment on the nature of the incident itself, in fact the newspaper made a correction in the online version of the story and is going to print a correction in the Saturday, February 2, 2013 edition.

The Royalton Hartland School District is a district of immense pride, great students, great families and great staff.  Those involved have been cooperative throughout the investigation.  It is likely every school district in the country has experiences with these events.  In the end we are an educational institution where learning takes place sometimes through making mistakes.  We will continue to educate our students, staff and community regarding such incidents.  We believe all have learned about the seriousness of these incidents, and are firm in our belief that our school community will endure.  While we are currently in the media spotlight, I can only hope that others learn from our story, and perhaps it prevents such an incident from occurring elsewhere.


The annual Winterfest will take place today -- Saturday, February 2nd -- from 11:00 till 4:00 at the Elementary School. Tickets are $2 at the door while kids 10 and under are free.

Scheduled events include:

* House of Bounce
* "In Jest"
* Nickle City Reptiles & Exotics
* The Magic of Weiland's Tony & Jake
* Mr. Paul, the balloon guy
* Face painting
* Irish dancers
* Siberian Husky Club of Niagara Frontier
* Vendors and crafters
* Hartland Carriage rides
* Hair cuts for charity
* Basket auction

Local food vendors will be serving pizza, chili, soup, mac & cheese, baked goods, hot dogs, and more.


The Buffalo News has in today's newspaper an article by Niagara County beat reporter Charlie Specht that delves into the latest Royalton-Hartland controversy.

Charlie spent some time with Coach Baker and some of the things to take away the article are...

....Baker vehemently denied knowing about the incident and said he is being unfairly punished.

“There’s no way in hell I’m going to let somebody get picked on,” he said. “Everyone’s trying to compare it with the Jamey Rodemeyer thing, but it’s not. I’m not the bad guy.”


Whatever it was, Baker says he never saw it happen for one good reason: He can’t set foot in the locker room.

“I don’t know how I’m supposed to control what happens in the locker room,” Baker said. “I am not allowed in there when they change.”

Instead, he was stationed near the gym at the end of a long hallway.

The article is a good read -- and a necessary one for all District residents. It closes out in a sad fashion as Baker reflects on what this has done to him.

Read it online in its entirety here:




Friday, February 1, 2013


Be sure to read the Buffalo News tomorrow.

I just saw on the Twitter feed of Buffalo News reporter Charlie Specht the following 2 tweets...

On Roy-Hart coach firing, read superintendent's comments in tomorrow's @TheBuffaloNews. Not academic-speak, either.

Also look for suspended Roy-Hart coach Don Baker's comments in tomorrow's story. Tells a different tale than superintendent.

Follow Charlie on Twitter @CharlieBuffNews


Roy-Hart is now in crisis management mode as made evident by a release to the local media that attempts to clarify statements made by board president Patricia Reigle to the local paper in which she used the word "rape", which, of course, would lead people to believe that a rape actually did occur (a la Wilson's hazing mess from a few years ago).

A rape, as most people in the district know, didn't happen. But, it could easily be inferred by those not in the the know or those outside of the district. In the case of the interview it was used -- and poorly -- to assess a theoretical situation.

Here's this evening's report by the Lockport paper on the issue, along with the school's statement:



Despite what is being reported in the papers, radio and all 3 TV stations, I am being told by individuals connected to the school board that Mr. Baker was not permanently terminated from coaching, but was rather suspended from coaching for the remainder of the basketball season only. He still holds his regular position as a school monitor and might see a return to athletics in the future upon approval by the board.


The Royalton-Hartland Central School District will be hosting a “Coffee and Conversation” with Kevin MacDonald, Superintendent of Schools and Kelly Griffith, School Business Official.

The topics of conversation will be the Governor’s education agenda, current budget status, the tax cap, the tax levy limit and how all these issues impact the school district.

The first “Coffee and Conversation” is February 4 at 6:30 p.m. and the second is February 19 at 10:00 a.m. Both will be held in the high school media center.

In addition, the Board of Education will be holding a series of budget workshops at 5:30 p.m. on February 7, 14 and 28 in the high school media center. All workshops are open to the public. Residents of the school district are encouraged to attend the “Coffee and Conversations” and the budget workshops.


On January 18, 2013 there was an incident that occurred while the Royalton-Hartland girl's basketball team was playing at the Barker Central School District. The incident involved some members of the team and a former player. The incident started in the hallway outside of the girl's locker room and then continued inside the locker room. Further details of the incident will not be released due to various privacy laws.

The district has conducted an investigation surrounding the facts of the incident. All of the student's on the team were interviewed as well as other school personnel. In addition, the Superintendent of Schools, and other school officials have met with the parents and players to share with them the results of the District's investigation and to review applicable District policies and the District Code of Conduct. Disciplinary measures have been taken, however due to Family Educational Rights Privacy Act, the district will not comment on what measures have been taken. It has been determined that the coach is suspended from his basketball coaching duties for the remainder of the girls' basketball season. The district will also provide further training to the team in hopes of providing additional tools to the students so as to avoid any similar incidents in the future.

Royalton-Hartland Central Schools take these incidents seriously, especially in light of recent similar such incidents and the newly enacted Dignity for All Students Act. This has been a very sensitive and emotional time for the team and the district. The district is appreciative of the cooperation it received during the course of the investigation, and it is our hope that we can put this situation behind us and the team is able to finish out its season.


The Roy-Hart community is in an uproar over Don Baker's tenure as coach coming to a close. I have seen plenty of posts all over Facebook about internal political issues driving his termination from athletics. It's certainly an issue that will see more sunlight and coverage in the coming days and weeks. In the meantime, let's focus on Baker and his positive impact on Roy-Hart -- current and former Roy-Hart athletes, comment on our Facebook page and share with us your thoughts about what Coach has meant to you.


Don Baker has been a fixture of Royalton-Hartland Athletics for a very long time. I graduated in 1993 and even back then the likable and popular Baker was involved with school sports.

He isn't anymore.

In a shocking development, the Lockport Union Sun and Journal is reporting in today's paper that Mr. Baker was terminated over a bullying incident that occurred on the girl's basketball team.

According to the article...

Sources told the Lockport Union Sun & Journal the matter involves a locker room incident in which some sort of attack was waged on a teammate who has learning disabilities. Neither MacDonald, nor any district officials would confirm that report.

The incident happened when the Roy-Hart Lady Rams played a girls basketball game at Barker High School on Jan. 18. It was also reportedly recorded on a cell phone.

When Roy-Hart administrators and district attorneys caught wind of the alleged attack, they took immediate action, MacDonald said. Baker's failure to report the incident resulted in his dismissal, MacDonald said.

Read the article online at the newspaper's website: