News

Photo by Jordan Patterson
Pictured in the front row, from left, are  new Principal Kirby Oldham, John Hogan, founder of Bridge-It Evaluation, firm hired to mediate tension at Ripley; and Erin Wheeler, curriculum coordinator.

Superintendent steps down at Ripley meeting

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RIPLEY — During Thursday's regular board of education meeting, Ripley Superintendent Lauren Ormsby tendered her resignation. The announcement comes almost two months after the Ripley Teachers Union announced a vote of “no confidence” in school leadership, citing hostility, favoritism and ...

Daryl Bland

2016 murder trial jury selection begins March 12

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There were three corrections made on this story. The incident occurred in the town of Collins, changed the district attorney to John J. Flynn, the current person in the position, and the jury selection, though likely to take one to three days, is spanned from one day to several weeks. Daryl ...

‘Weather’ or not

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MAYVILLE — It’s a castle fit for a king, but it’s Mother Nature who ultimately rules Lakeside Park in Mayville. Volunteers spent Thursday morning packing snow up against this year’s ice castle iteration, which contains hundreds of blocks of ice from Chautauqua Lake. The castle — a ...

Community Notebook

Community Notebook

Village of Silver Creek schedules two workshops The village of Silver Creek Board will hold a workshop meeting with NYSEG regarding LED lighting on Feb. 19 at 9 a.m. in the village hall. There will also be a workshop on Monday, Feb. 26 at 4 p.m. regarding the Clean Energy ...

Area Police

Area police

Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office ¯ JAMESTOWN — Patricia M. Gray, 61, of Jamestown allegedly failed to notify the Chautauqua County Department of Health and Human Services of income received within her household from Oct. 1, 2015 through May 31, 2016. This unreported income allowed ...

Submitted Photo
The Second Annual Cassadaga Winter Festival drew a large crowd this past weekend. One of the many activities included sledding which was organized by Boy Scout Troop No. 219.

Cassadaga Winter Festival continues to grow

Local/Region

Scores of people shed cabin fever Feb. 9-11 and enjoyed various indoor and outdoor activities. Friends and neighbors were glad to visit and catch up with each other after being “snowbound” for much of the winter. On Friday evening, families enjoyed the movie “Frozen” and free ...

OBSERVER Photo by Jimmy McCarthy

Thursday-night scare

Local/Region

Several agencies responded to reports of a chimney fire in the town of Dunkirk on Thursday evening. The call came in just before 9 p.m. at 10597 Lakewood Drive on the west side of town. The East and West Fire Departments were on scene as well as the Fredonia Fire Department and Chautauqua ...

Falconer School not damaged in trash can fire

Local/Region

FALCONER — A trash can fire at Falconer High School caused no structural damage overnight. According to the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office, at about 1:30 a.m. Thursday, the Falconer Fire Department along with other area fire departments responded to a fire alarm at the high school. ...

Ripley Elementary only designated Reward School in county

Local/Region

RIPLEY — Only 73 of the 155 schools in New York State that Education Commissioner Mary Ellen Elia identified as Reward Schools are outside New York City, and of those 73, only Ripley is in Chautauqua County. According to the State Education Department, Reward Schools are schools with high ...

Submitted Photo

Sweet Little Valentines

Local/Region

Looking handsome in their red knitted caps, Jerry and his nursery neighbors, Benicio and Jexiel, stole the hearts of obstetrics staff. Pictured holding the babies, from left, are Jessica Sobczak, Katie Drummond and Christina Goss. This year, the Catholic observance of Ash Wednesday coincided ...

As evidenced by the turnout at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church last week, Jim Nichols touched many in our region.

‘Hometown’ sentiment drove Nichols

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In the obituary published on Feb. 8 and 9 in the OBSERVER, there was one line that summed up James T. Nichols and his commitment to Dunkirk and the surrounding communities: he “couldn’t or wouldn’t say ‘no’ to anybody.” For Nichols, it all came down to a belief in this region. He ...

OBSERVER Photo by Andrew David Kuczkowski
Gowanda Board of Education member Jen Gernatt is an advocate for turf at the baseball and softball diamonds.

Gowanda school board changes scope of project

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GOWANDA — Upon opening its doors and taking input from concerned residents regarding the $41.5 million capital project, the Gowanda Board of Education decided to reel back its scope with aspirations to have a May vote. In its most recent meeting, the board agreed to remove the combination ...

Drainage issues on Oak Hill

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SILVER CREEK — Susan and Jeffrey Briggs told the Silver Creek Village Board during a recent meeting that they’re being blamed for a problem they have no part in instigating. As a matter of fact, they said, they’re as much the victim as everyone else on Oak Hill. The problem? ...

Land Bank discusses remaining Falconer arson debris

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The Chautauqua County Land Bank Corporation is stuck between a pile of rocks and a hard place. On Wednesday, Gina Paradis, land bank executive director, discussed the request from village of Falconer officials for assistance removing the debris from the scene of an arson fire at 29-31, 33-43 ...

Not so fast

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Pomfret officials didn’t act on a redistricting proposal for Routes 60 and 20 on Wednesday due to a recent response from the Chautauqua County Planning Board stating its disapproval of the idea. Town residents also voiced their objections to the proposal during a public hearing Wednesday ...

Community Notebook

Community Notebook

Ripley Board of Ed. to meet today A regular meeting of the Board of Education of the Ripley Central School District will be held today at 6:30 p.m. in the Research Library of the Ripley Central School for the purpose of any and all items that come before the board. Village of Silver Creek ...

Area Police

Area police

Fredonia Police Reports ¯ Dillon Miller, 27, of Fredonia, was charged Monday with unlawful possession of marijuana and expired inspection. ¯ Bradys Del Villar, 20, of New York City was charged Sunday with open container. ¯ Justin Capuano, 22, of Cleveland, Ohio, was charged Sunday ...

Westfield Police to aid in car seat safety

Local/Region

WESTFIELD — Four out of five car seats are used incorrectly. The community is invited to attend a free fitting station and learn how to install a car seat correctly. Parents/guardians should bring the child, car seat, vehicle and if possible, both the vehicle and car seat owner’s ...