Pet Festival celebrates furry friends


Photos by Sue Cook
Robert Stilwell took photographs of pets in funny poses and costumes for the event. Dilly was made to look like a ’20s swinger with the props on hand.

 

By Sue Cook, staff reporter Posted 10 August 2014
GAINES – The Olde Dogge Inn held a Pet Festival on Saturday and welcomed more than 100 visitors in the first hour. People were welcome to bring their pets for sales, demonstrations, services, portraits and psychic readings.

 

“People are really excited about this and having a lot of fun,” said Olde Dogge Inn owner Jennifer Stilwell. “All the animals are happy, all the people are happy. It’s just a great event and it’s getting a lot of positive response. This only reinforces our decision to bring the festival back because it definitely is drawing a lot of attention.”

 

Eveline Burdick attended the festival with her dog Sasha in tow.


“It's a good way for the dogs to socialize with people and I've never been here and I wanted to see what they had to offer," she said. "We always do all the pet festivals and I saw this one online."


Festival goers could check out tents selling pet merchandise or talk to vendors about food choices. Pet rescuers were also there accepting donations and educating the public on their services.


Pet ID tags were offered at a discount price to give lost pets a better chance of getting home.

 

Lieutenant Christopher Bourke with the Orleans County Sheriff's Department was there to do a demonstration with Cim, a dog that works for the department. He was contacted by Stilwell to do a demonstration.

 

Cim was trained in Germany and imported by the department. Bourke gives Cim her commands in German. Because the dog and trainer are so close, Cim works the same hours as Bourke and returns home with him each night.

 

“We're going to talk about the dog and how we use the dog and the training the dog has," Bourke said. "We'll demonstrate some obedience, some drug-detection work and let the dog apprehend a pretend bad guy.”

Bourke plays with Cim for a moment because she found the drugs that were hidden.

Drug detection is turned into a game for training to make it more exciting for the dog.

Bourke demonstrated how Cim follows commands by having her sit and heel on command.

 

He also had her break into a full run and then had her drop into a laying position instantly. He explained that having her obey commands so quickly from a distance could potentially save her life. It could prevent her from being in harm's way in a variety of dangerous situations.

Bourke and Deputy Jeff Cole show how Cim is used to apprehend criminals.

 

The Orleans County Dog Heelers 4-H club also did a demonstration at the event. The group showed off their dogs' agility and obedience. They also performed tricks and played flyball. The club is led by Jackie Gingerich and Lindsay Moore.

 

Club member Abby Allen brought her chocolate lab Cody to show off his abilities.

 

“He's really well trained,” she said. “He's really good at obedience. If you tell him to sit and stay, he'll stay there forever.”

The Dog Heelers ran their dogs through the obstacle course.

 

P.A.W.S. Animal Shelter also brought some pets and information about adoptions. Olde Dogge Inn helps the shelter with adoptions by having kittens in the store.

 

“We're just spreading the word that we're open. We're in a pretty slow spot. We're on Gaines Basin Road and there's not a lot of traffic through there. We're also a no-kill shelter,” said volunteer Morgan Tinkous. “We've had birds, ferrets, rabbits, guinea pigs. We've taken small animals. We don't take in anything we're not comfortable with.”

These cats are among the ones up for adoption. Throughout the festival, several kids came up to play with the cats.

 

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Fairhaven adds flag poles, will soon put in peace garden

Photo by Tom Rivers Posted 5 August 2014
GAINES – Fairhaven Treasures recently installed three new flag poles and started work on what will be an International Peace Garden. The poles hold flags for the United States, Canada and also a yellow flag that says, “Don’t Tread On Me.”


Ray Burke and his wife Linda own the property at the southeast corner of routes 98 and 104. They celebrated the grand opening for Fairhaven Treasures on May 3-4.


They will have the second International Peace Garden in Orleans County, following Brown’s Berry Patch. The new garden by the flag poles should be in place by the end of the summer, Mr. Burke said.

 

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Waterport woman seriously injured in accident on 279

Press release, Orleans County Undersheriff Steve Smith Posted 13 July 2014
GAINES – A Waterport woman is in serious condition at a Buffalo hospital after crashing her vehicle early this morning in the Town of Gaines.


The incident occurred at about 2 a.m. in the 2200 block of Gaines-Waterport Road (State Route 279). Felicia A. Gaddis, 45, was the sole occupant of the 2000 Buick sedan she was driving southbound. She apparently lost control of the vehicle, crossed the center line and ran off the east side of the roadway before striking a utility pole.


Gaddis was ejected from the car as it overturned, coming to rest on its side. She was flown to Erie County Medical Center by Mercy Flight helicopter.


The collision resulted in downed power lines when the utility pole was snapped in half, which brought a response from National Grid.


While the incident remains under investigation, it appears that both alcohol & excessive speed were contributing factors. Charges against Gaddis are pending her recovery and blood test results.


The incident was investigated by Deputy T.C. Marano, assisted by Deputy J.W. Halstead and Investigators K.M. Strickland Jr., and D.E. Foeller Jr.


Albion and Carlton firefighters and Central Orleans Volunteer Ambulance personnel were also at the scene.

 

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Planners back Intergrow expansion

Photo by Tom Rivers
Intergrow Greenhouses has the Orleans County Planning Board’s approval for an expansion on the western side of its property, a 7.3-acre addition to its greenhouses.

 

By Tom Rivers, editor Posted 27 June 2014
ALBION – A company planning a major expansion to its greenhouses has the Orleans County Planning Board’s support for the project.


Intergrow Greenhouses is planning a 7.3-acre expansion that would be 632 feet by 504 feet. The new building would be on the western side of its property that already includes 48 acres of greenhouses.


County planners on Thursday recommended the Town of Gaines approve a special use permit and the site plan for the project in a residential/agriculture district. The property is located at 2428 Oak Orchard Rd.


Dirk Biemans, co-owner of Intergrow, presented the project to the County Planning Board on Thursday. Biemans said Intergrow, which first built a greenhouse in Gaines in 2003, is seeing increased demand for its hydroponic tomatoes.


He would like to break ground on the addition this summer and have the new greenhouse ready for its first planting in November.


The greenhouse addition will be 318,214 square feet. The project also includes an 11,546 square foot addition for storage and a 3,947 square foot addition for a generator room.


Intergrow employs 100 people in Gaines and expects to hire 10 to 15 more with the expansion.

 

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Intergrow plans another expansion in Gaines

Greenhouse will add 7.5 acres, 10-15 jobs

Photos by Tom Rivers
Dirk Biemans is co-owner of Intergrow Greenhouses, which built its first 15-acre greenhouse in the town of Gaines in 2003. The company is planning another 7.5-acre greenhouse, bringing the total space to 55.5 acres.


By Tom Rivers, editor Posted 26 June 2014
GAINES – Intergrow Greenhouses is planning another expansion that will give the company 55.5 acres of greenhouses along Route 98 in Gaines. The new project, planned to start this summer and be ready for a November planting, will add 10 to 15 jobs to the site that already has 100 employees.


“We’ve been expanding,” said Dirk Biemans, co-owner of Intergrow. “Word has got out about Intergrow and it’s been a snowball effect.”


Intergrow first opened a greenhouse in Fillmore in Allegany County in 1998. The site continues to grow beefsteak tomatoes.


In 2003, Intergrow picked a flat piece of property at 2428 Oak Orchard Rd. for a new 15-acre greenhouse. The level land was ideal for the greenhouse, and the location within a 10-hour striking distance of major markets in New York, New England, and heading south and west.


“We tell our customers we pick it today and you’ll have it tonight,” Biemans said.


Intergrow currently has 100 employees, and expects to add 10 to 15 more with the expansion.


The tomatoes have proven popular, especially with a push for locally grown produce, sustainable agriculture and a quality product. Intergrow has expanded twice since the initial site in 2003 and now is planning on another 7.5-acre greenhouse this summer.


The company supplies Hannaford, Aldi, Wegmans, Whole Foods and other customers. Intergrow is seeing more demand for its tomatoes in Connecticut, Maryland, and the Carolinas, and that is fueling the need for the expansion, Beimans said.


“We’re gaining ground because of a consistent product and availability,” he said.


Intergrow grows tomatoes on the vine in near uniform shape and size. The tomatoes are grown hydroponically without soil in the ground.


Intergrow has tomatoes available nine months of the year. That compares to field grown tomatoes that tend to be available in the summer and early fall. The field crops are vulnerable to weather and pests.


Intergrow has a closed system. It captures rainwater that is used for irrigation. The company brings in hives of bees for pollination and will introduce some pests to control insects.


The vines are thick and workers will prune the plants to clusters of five. That produces five tomatoes that weigh about 28 ounces. Intergrow strives for consistent weight and appearance in the tomatoes.


Beimans said the weather can affect the crop when there are long stretches of overcast days. The tomatoes need sunlight to grow and ripen.

Biemans holds a cluster of five tomatoes that were picked this morning.

 

Intergrow has been hosting international students since 2001. They have come from every continent and many return to poor countries with a goal of helping their communities be more dependent in producing food.

 

"Most of them come from undeveloped countries," Biemans said about the interns. "We feel it's our obligation to teach and share our knowledge."


The company won’t be expanding again in Gaines after the latest project because there won’t be any more open space on the company property. The newest expansion will be on the west end of the greenhouse complex.


Biemans hopes to plant the first tomatoes in the new greenhouses in November.


The expansion plan will go before the Orleans County Planning Board today at 7 p.m.

The greenhouses are located at 2428 Oak Orchard Rd. (Route 98)

 

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Black bear wanders to Gaines

Photo courtesy of Cody Weese Posted 23 June 2014

GAINES – A black bear was spotted along Route 279, north of Route 104 today around 6 p.m. Cody Weese took this picture of the bear near an airfield. It then went into the hay field to the west.

 

Bear spottings seem to be on the rise in Western New York. One bear was killed in Springville earlier this month after it was struck by an SUV.


The state Department of Environmental Conservation reports there are about 8,000 black bears in the state, with nearly all in the Southern Tier. However, 10 to 15 percent live in Central and Western New York, according to The Buffalo News.

 

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2 new roofs for historic buildings at Cobblestone Museum

Provided photos
JBF Construction recently put a new roof on the Cobblestone Universalist Church and then put one on the neighboring brick house.


Staff reports Posted 21 June 2014
GAINES – Two buildings constructed in the 1830s both have new roofs. JBF Construction in Albion worked on the projects last month and in early June.


The Cobblestone Society Museum raised the money for the new roof for the Cobblestone Universalist Church, a building from 1834 on Route 104, just east of Route 98. The project was paid for with donations, including a corporate gift from Christopher-Mitchell Funeral Homes and grants from the Daughters of the American Revolution, The Elizabeth Dye Curtis Foundation & The Orleans County Foundation, and the New York Landmarks Conservancy’s Sacred Sites program.

While contractors were working on the church, two museum board members, Gary and Grace Kent, decided to pay for the new roof on the next-door brick house, which was built in circa 1836.

 

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