Tuesday, December 31, 2019

2019 year in review

Gasport may be a small community but we are chock full of big news. Here’s a look back at some of the many things that happened in 2019…


Community fellowship Church’s youth center in Johnson’s Creek opened.

Schwab’s Farm Market underwent some remodeling.

Kevin Worosz and Kitty Ulrich were featured in the local paper for their unique shed made of bottles.

At the request of the Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council, the High School’s vendors experimented with new meals to bring some variety.


Port’s Pizza and Subs opened in the hamlet.

Becca’s Closet continued their much-needed service of providing prom dresses to girls in need.

Roy-Hart closed on the 25th because of a wind storm.

Danielle Alterio became Roy-Hart’s new Middle School Principal.


A Victorian Tea took place at Covenant United Church…and there was a Princess Tea for the young ones.

Royalton-Hartland was honored with the Best Communities for Music Education designation from The NAMM Foundation

Roy-Hart’s Destination Imagination team won big and became eligible for state competition.

A new ranking from community research site Niche.com showed the cheapest places to live in the state relative to income. Gasport came in 24th

Gasport’s Scott Brauer, who teaches at the Niagara Career and Technical Education Center, was named the SkillsUSA New York Area 1 Advisor of the Year.

The County offered Narcan training at Hartland Bible Church.


The Gasport Lions hosted the annual Easter egg hunt in Gasport.

A fire claimed a home at the corner of Route 104 and Checkered Tavern.


A group of five students from the Roy-Hart School District were in Kansas City, Missouri for the Destination Imagination global competition.

Roy-Hart voters passed a major capital improvement project for the District.

Retired Roy-Hart music teacher Gary Few passed away.


Beautiful Flag Day ceremonies were held at the Elementary School.

This year’s Roy-Hart graduating class was the last to experience the big trees at the front of the High School campus.

Mrs. Rogenmoser, who taught 1st grade at Roy-Hart in the 1960s and 1970s, passed away.

The brand new splash pad opened at Hartland Town Park.

The annual fly-in breakfast took place at the airport.


The big trees at the front of the high school campus were removed as part of the FMC remediation project.

The Independence Day celebration brought hundreds of families to Hartland Town Park.  

The Salt & Light Festival moved to July for 2019 and it was a hit.

The annual Erie Canal Derby was a success.

The Royalton-Hartland Community Library celebrated 90 years.

Victor Wainwright and the Train (featuring Gasport’s Pat Harrington) ruled the Summer Sizzler.

The Cycle the Erie Canal tour saw 650 cyclists pass through Gasport.


The first open house was held regarding the proposed solar project – Ridge View -- in Hartland.


Saddle-Up For Roswell brought in thousands of dollars of donations for Roswell.

Homecoming featured an entertaining Fan Fest for the entire family.

The Gasport post office went back to full service.

Hartland Bible Church hosted a Sportsman’s Dinner with special guest Lance Krueger.

The culverts under the Gasport Road bridge at the Gasport Reservoir were repaired.


A Newfane school bus was shot at after leaving a contested soccer match in Gasport.

The Gasport Lions hosted a Halloween party for kids.

Oriden proposed the construction of a 20 megawatt solar project to be located in the town of Royalton.

Verratti Farms hosted Down on the Farm, a community get-together.

The Travel Channel visited Gasport's Graestone Manor in June to film an episode of ‘The Most Terrifying Places in America” which aired in October.


A fireball was visible in Gasport in daylight.

WGRZ covered the middle school food drive that helped stock the Gasport food pantry.

Mr. Holohan retired from Roy-Hart.

The 13th annual Mitten Tree went up.

Trees were planted at the high school campus.

Scouting for Food collected over 1,000 items.

Hartland supervisor Ross Annable retained his position despite a strong write-in campaign by Mike Outten.


Two Gasport boys were able to see in color for the first time thanks to the charity of the community.

For the year, the Food Pantry served 326 families totaling 1,087 people and distributed 479 bags of food.

Matt Sweeney, the ag teacher at Roy-Hart, is one of only six individuals nationwide to receive the National Association of Agricultural Educators Outstanding Early Career Teacher Award.

Sunday, December 22, 2019

The food pantry at work

You've got to love the charity of those who donate to the Gasport Community Food Pantry & Clothing Closet and the volunteer efforts of those who give so much of their time to it.

On Saturday, December 21st, they had 41 families totaling 143 people use the Food Pantry. 26 families used the clothing closet.

Beyond the standard monthly distribution, they also gave Christmas Meal Bags and Hams to 45 families totaling 161 people.

For the year's regular distributions they served 326 families totaling 1,087 people and distributed 479 bags of food.

Thank you to all who continue to show that Gasport may be a small town but it has big hearts.

Sweeney receives national recognition

Matt Sweeney, the ag teacher at Roy-Hart, is one of only six individuals nationwide to receive the National Association of Agricultural Educators Outstanding Early Career Teacher Award


Saturday, December 21, 2019

Christmas Eve at Becker Farms

If you'd like to attend an always memorable and cozy Christmas Eve service, head over the old barn at Becker Farms and Vizcarra Vineyards on the 24th for a 4:00 service led by Pastor Rod Klinzing of Zion Lutheran Church. It's just over a half hour in length, featuring the scripture of Jesus's birth mixed with holiday songs. It's always an interesting place to reflect on the reason for the season.

This picture shows one of the warmer Christmas Eves -- this one won't be so warm (the service time temps will be around 38), so be sure to dress for the weather.

If being outdoors in a barn for Christmas Eve isn't your cup of tea, Pastor Rod will be leading indoor services at Zion at 7:00 PM and 11:00 PM on the 24th.

Friday, December 20, 2019

Some Roy-Hart tweets!

Food pantry: December 21

Food pantry and clothing closet distribution is tomorrow, Saturday, December 21st. It's one week ahead of the usual fourth-Saturday schedule so those who utilize their services have what they'll need for Christmas

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Silsby is a yield leader!

The results are in for the National Corn Growers Association 2019 National Corn Yield Contest. The National Corn Yield Contest is now in its 55th year and remains NCGA’s most popular program for members. It has provided corn growers the opportunity to compete with their colleagues to grow the most corn per acre, helping feed and fuel the world. This has given participants not only the recognition they deserve but the opportunity to learn from their peers.

New York's winner in the conventional non-irrigated category is Gasport's own Jeremy Silsby whose yield was 254.6496.

Congrats on a harvest well-done -- especially given the very wet (too wet!) year we had in Gasport!!

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Doty is a UB Bull

UB Football has announced Gasport's own Tyler Doty will be a part of the team in 2020. Division I football!!


Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Becker Farms educates about agritourism

I've always liked the collaborative nature of the ag industry. The good people at Becker Farms and Vizcarra Vineyards recently educated some folks on agritourism


Monday, December 16, 2019

Spaghetti dinner

Spaghetti dinner fundraiser -- tomorrow!

Tuesday, December 17th. 4 - 7 pm
Solid Rock Church 8590 Rochester Rd. Gasport.
Cost: Donation - Proceeds Benefit the Salt & Light Festival.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Thank you from PTA

A message from Casey at the RoyHart Elementary PTA...

I just wanted to sincerely thank our AMAZING community for coming together to save the Snowflake Shop this year! You all came out in full force as a community, and we should all feel blessed to have each other. Not one person turned the post into an argument, instead you shared , Volunteered and recruited more volunteers.

Thank you Moms, Dads, Grandmas, Aunts and Highschool students. It has been an ABSOLUTE pleasure working with you this year, you have all been so amazing and have just made such amazing memories for our kiddos.

McCollum Farms letter to editor

Gasport's McCollum Farms have come out against the proposed solar projects in today's Lockport paper:


Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Ohol and Bacon achieve All-State

Royalton–Hartland High School Senior Madison Ohol was selected to perform with the NYSSMA All-State Symphonic Band for the second year in a row and senior Aaron Bacon was selected to perform with the NYSSMA All-State Wind Ensemble. Both students participated in a concert held at the acclaimed Eastman Theatre in Rochester, NY during the annual Winter Conference of the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) held from December 5 – 8. Those chosen to participate in an ensemble at this conference represent the best high school musicians from all of New York State as determined by previous NYSSMA solo festival scores and teacher recommendation.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Update from the PTA

Just a little update on the snowflake shop.... Thank you to everyone who has reached out to volunteer. We still need more but have enough to run at the bare minimum right now.
This is an event the children truly look forward to and have so much fun shopping at, it is a shame it almost had to be canceled due to lack of volunteers. The events that you are used to bringing your kiddos too that they look forward to are all run on a volunteer basis. We are currently looking for chairs to take over multiple events in the Elementary school. The parents that have run them for so long have moved up to the middle school and want to do things for their kids. These events include The Halloween Party, Snowflake, Easter Bunny Breakfast, Ice Cream Social & Field Day.

Many hands make light work and if everyone could just chip in we have a fabulous community and can do so much for our kids together.

We are currently looking for a chair for next year to take Snowflake over. After 8 years of running this Casey 's daughter is moving up to the middle school and she will no longer have any kiddos in Elementary. If you have an interest in taking this over please contact her. Thank you.

Friday, December 6, 2019

PTA needs help

This is an URGENT plea for volunteers from the Elementary School PTA.
As of yesterday afternoon they had just 14 volunteers signed up for the Snowflake Shop next week. They need a minimum of 30 more volunteers with full coverage to run this. If they do not have the coverage they need by 3 pm today (Friday the 6th) they will sadly have to cancel this event. Please share. Invite grandparents, Aunts, Uncles. They need the help desperately.

Please contact Casey Yaeger

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Mitten Tree at Drum Oil

The Mitten Tree outside of the Gasport post office has been pretty much stripped bare. If you still want to have an impact with this awesome endeavor and bring holiday cheer to local kids in need, there remains some mittens that need charity on the mitten tree in Drum Oil's office on Route 31 in Gasport

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Food drive makes the news

Be sure to watch WGRZ's report about how the students at Royalton-Hartland School District Middle School stocked the shelves of the Gasport Community Food Pantry & Clothing Closet. This is why I'm always thankful to live in the community where I do. Gasport/Roy-Hart is a great place to raise a family!

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Breakfast With Santa

Holahan retires from Roy-Hart

I was fortunate to have Mr. Holahan as a teacher back in my junior high days. Great guy. He's been an accomplished, impactful teacher and coach for Royalton-Hartland School District. He led Roy-Hart's varsity volleyball team for 44 years (he also coached basketball and softball). He retires today. Thank you, Bill, for positively impacting so many lives.

Monday, November 25, 2019

The 13th annual Mitten Tree

The Mitten Tree is up!

When you’re out and about shopping for Christmas, please extend your giving beyond your family. Please buy a gift for a needy child in Gasport.

This is the thirteenth year for this awesome program that is run by the Gasport Lions Club.

Here’s how it works…

The tree is located out front of the Gasport post office at the corner of Main Street and Route 31.
Take a mitten from it and give a gift that is appropriate to the age/gender of the child noted on the mitten.

Attach the mitten to the unwrapped gift and drop it off at Absolut Care or Drum Oil (they have drop boxes) or at the Elementary School (under the tree in the lobby). The Lions Club will distribute the gifts in time for the holidays.

Please participate and make Christmas a little better for a child – maybe even your neighbor – who is in need. That’s what the holiday is all about.

Fireball visible in Gasport

On Sunday, November 24th, I witnessed a very large, very green fireball in Gasport, in broad daylight...7:15 AM.

After posting this observation on Facebook, two other Gasport residents said they saw it.

And, the American Meteor Society's reports page showed that quite a few people saw it in a wide area.

Friday, November 22, 2019

Replacement trees being planted

Here's a photo that Dr. Stopinski posted on Twitter. These are trees being being placed at the High School to replace those removed by FMC remediation

WGRZ comes to Roy-Hart

WGRZ's Heather Ly was at Royalton-Hartland School District's Middle School to film a story about the highly successful food drive that benefits the Gasport Food Pantry

Food Drive at the Elementary School

Looks like there could be some friendly competition going on. Do you think the Elementary School can beat the Middle School in items collected? You know who wins when it's all said and done, though? Families in need of the towns of Royalton and Hartand who use the services of the Gasport Food Pantry. These drives teach kids great lessons about charity and service that hopefully lead to a lifetime of the same.

Thanksgiving Eve in Gasport

The evening before Thanksgiving is one of America's biggest bar/nightclub nights of the year as snowbirds, expats, etc. return home for the holiday and want to catch up with friends while in town.

Gasport certainly has its share of Thanksgiving Eve events.

The Canalside Inn's party features Last Call (unplugged) from 9 until midnight. The event page is: https://www.facebook.com/events/2540613929364346/

Chop Shop Bar and Grill
features DJ One Ten from 10:00 PM until 1:00 AM. The event page is: https://www.facebook.com/events/532708667295109/

Becker Farms and Vizcarra Vineyards
has a shindig from 6 until midnight with live music from Dave Stockton, drink specials, and food specials. The Facebook page is here: https://www.facebook.com/events/621556582000543/

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Nerds Gone Wild

FMC award

FMC has been recognized for leadership in environmental, health, safety and security performance by the American Chemistry Council (ACC) with the Responsible Care® Company of the Year Award for its TH!NK. SAFE.™program, which is at the core of the company's safety commitment. TH!NK. SAFE. fosters a dynamic safety culture through interactive programs that engage all levels of the organization. A visible example of FMC’s commitment is this signage prominently displayed at FMC’s Middleport plant. FMC also received a Sustainability Leadership Award for 2019 from ACC.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Music Club fundraiser

The Roy-Hart Music Parents Club is selling gift cards in time for holiday gift giving. All proceeds earned from the sale of the gift cards support the Roy-Hart Music program. Details can be found on the following webpage or you may contact rhmusicparents@gmail.com for more information. The website is: https://www.royhart.org/Page/271

PORC video on hunting around solar

Protect Our Rural Communities has produced this video that offers their assessment of how solar will affect hunting and recreational use of firearms:


Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Hartland solar open house; November 20

Food pantry: November 23rd

Monthly food pantry distribution is this Saturday, November 23rd.

It will be a two-part distribution: The regular monthly allotment and a special Thanksgiving meal package. The Thanksgiving package is only available to those who had signed up for it (registration for it has closed).

At Saturday's distribution you can also sign-up for the special Christmas meal package.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Mills Jewelers contest coming to Gasport

Mills Jewelers has been in business for 90 awesome years. As a part of their anniversary celebration they've been hiding gift cards throughout various communities. Tomorrow is Gasport's turn. George Fritz's team will be hiding $100 gift cards all over Gasport. Find one, share it, and they'll validate the card. Follow the directions inside the box. Check out Mills Facebook and Instagram page for clues on Tuesday, November 19

Spaghetti dinner: Tuesday, November 19th

Scouting For Food nets huge results

Scouting For Food was super-successful! The Gasport Food Pantry got 1,023 items thanks to the donations by the community and the collection efforts of Pack 18 and Troop 18. Wow!

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Roy-Hart FFA at Nationals

Our Royalton-Hartland FFA members represented our school and NY FFA very well at the 2019 National FFA Convention in Indianapolis!

In the National Environmental and Natural Resource Career Development Event, Roy-Hart earned a silver ranking - placing 25th of 44 schools. Individual results include:

- Ashton Becker - Gold Ranking - 31st Place
- Aidan Covert - Silver Ranking - 100th Place
- Tagen Decker - Silver Ranking - 122nd Place
- Lorna Becker - Bronze Ranking - 134th Place

Christmas auction

This Sunday, November 17th, Covenant United Church on Main Street will have their Annual Christmas Auction to help fund mission projects for their youth group. There is a wide variety of new items and gift certificates available. It's a great opportunity to work on Christmas shopping (or something for yourself!) while supporting CUCC's teens. Item preview and luncheon at 11:30. Auction starts at noon.

Here's the Facebook event page:


Holiday Farm Trail

Unique, small, niche, and organic farms in eastern Niagara County are having a Holiday Farm Trail event next month:


Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Solar projects in the news

Tuesday's Buffalo News features this cover story about the solar projects in Hartland and Royalton (and elsewhere):


Friday, November 8, 2019

Middle School food drive

Wow! Check out the charity of the middle school students and staff at the Royalton-Hartland School District. 6,184 items were collected for the Gasport Community Food Pantry & Clothing Closet. This collection will benefit the Pantry immensely...last month alone it served 120 people. THANK YOU, students and staff, for showing why Roy-Hart is a community of big hearts!