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Thursday, March 29, 2007

Stow Hotel on Chautauqua Lake

Stow Hotel Research Nearing Completion
By NICHOLAS L. DEAN

3/29/2007 - STOW — The developer looking to build a Hilton Hotel in North Harmony is nearly finished researching the project and will soon be looking to the Town Board for a decision on its construction.

According to John McGraw, the developer, balloons will fly at the site today to show the building's proposed height and width. The balloons had been scheduled to fly Wednesday, but were called off due to wind and because it was thought there would be rain during the day. The balloons are scheduled to go up at 8:30 a.m. today and remain up throughout the day.

''Our feeling is that we know what we're going to do engineering-wise and know it's all possible, so next comes the building,'' McGraw said Wednesday. ''If they say 'Yes, you can build your building,' then I think you're going to see a hotel. If they say 'No, we want something four stories tall' or some variation that kind of rips the heart out of what I want to do, then there probably isn't going to be a deal.''

As proposed to the Town Board by McGraw in February 2006, the hotel is to be located on the 30-acre Bootey property in Stow. At eight stories tall, it would have 150 rooms and 12 condominiums.

In the months since it was first proposed, town officials have said they are waiting on an application from McGraw to make a decision and will look at the project when it is properly proposed.

According to Sally Carlson, town supervisor, Town Board members have no opinion on the project yet.

''I'm at a point where I just want to find out where it's going to be and what it's going to look like size-wise,'' Mrs. Carlson said. ''I'm really at a point of just taking in information. I really, even personally, do not have a position yet.''

When heading west from Jamestown, the Bootey property is located on the right of Route 394 — just past Hogan's Hut. The property goes from Route 394 to Chautauqua Lake. According to Mrs. Carlson, there aren't many neighboring residents who would be directly affected by the project.

''After Hogan's there's a field on the right and then the next field is the Bootey's,'' Mrs. Carlson said. ''There really aren't many people out there. There's one house on the other side of the road that belongs to the town and then there's one by the town highway building that, I believe, belongs to Dick Sena and he uses it for his business.''

Proposed to be built near the Power Boat Club between Wells Bay and Stow roads, the project would have breakout meeting rooms in addition to hotel rooms. One of the rooms — a 60-by-90 foot room overlooking the bay into Chautauqua Lake — would be used for weddings.

''It's kind of up to the town to decide whether they want the project or not,'' McGraw said. ''I don't know when they will come to that conclusion.''

Four balloons will be flown today, with one at each corner of where the building will sit. According to McGraw, pictures need to be taken of the balloons from various angles to show how tall the hotel would be in relation to the surrounding area.

The next meeting of the North Harmony Town Board will be at 8 p.m. Monday.

Send comments to ndean@post-journal.com.
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com
 

Monday, March 26, 2007

Chautauqua foreclosure auctions

Demand house repairs

Chautauqua foreclosure auctions should include inspection mandate


Updated: 03/26/07 6:39 AM

 The Chautauqua County Legislature should support an attempt by two of its lawmakers to make winning bidders in tax foreclosure auctions accountable for structural improvements — a measure that could go a long way toward making sure that houses in the region don't just fall into disrepair at the hands of absentee landlords or unprepared homeowners.
The entire foreclosure process, as it stands, is long and arduous and can be relatively ineffective in providing any substantive improvement to distressed neighborhoods scattered throughout the county. When an owner fails to pay city, county and school taxes for three years, and has been given an opportunity to pay any arrears, the property goes on the foreclosure list.
The resolution wants to tweak the process by making winning bidders at those auctions authorize the local code enforcement officer to enter the property after the purchase has been made. The main concern isn't necessarily the need for a new coat of paint, but the hazard of improper and unsanitary plumbing, illegal and improper wiring and other health and safety hazards.
Chautauqua County, like other parts of Western New York, has older housing stock that appeals to out-of-town buyers. Some of these purchasers are would-be landlords, while others are the typical Internet trollers from all parts of the country and beyond, salivating at what they consider low prices. Once they discover there are few, if any, "big returns," taxes go unpaid and these lots eventually wind up back on the tax foreclosure list. Same story, different towns.
Ronald A. Szot, a Democrat in Dunkirk, and Chuck Cornell, a Democrat in Jamestown, are cautiously optimistic their resolution in response to that threat will gain approval during the next regular Legislature meeting Wednesday. The legislators want to give would-be purchasers something to think about — accountability. Instead of swooping down and grabbing up "deals," purchasers would be mandated to make significant repairs.
Critics of the plan worry that, if approved, this new rule will have a chilling effect on the auction process. Chautauqua County holds "absolute auctions," so whatever the property will bring, it brings.
A professional auctioneer generally starts high and solicits bids until someone begins. If a property is worth $100,000, the auctioneer will ask if anyone is willing to pay that price and keeps going down until someone says yes, and then competitive bidding starts to go up. The county takes a loss on some properties and gains on others. But for the last 23 years, the county has always gotten, overall, more money than the taxes that are owed, according to officials.
But those throughout the county who have dealt with the problem of decaying stock and vacant properties view this proposal as a means to revitalize areas that have been plagued with deteriorating structures. While the inspectionand- repair mandate would add accountability, fair notice of that requirement would make this a reasonable change to the process. The legislators' proposal is an effort to prevent people from speculating at auction, milking the property and not paying taxes so that the county winds up with the property again in a more deteriorated condition. That's good protection for the county, the property — and the taxpayers.
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com
 

Ellicottville Townhouses

Ellicottville project worth $30M

Business First of Buffalo - July 14, 2006

  • A $30 million townhouse project, the richest residential undertaking in Ellicottville's history, has been proposed for the resort community.
AWSC LLC, an Amherst investment group, is working with Ellicottville officials on a proposal to construct the Morningside Estates complex not far from the intersection of Route 219 and Route 242. The group acquired a 10-acre parcel from developer Peter Krog. Krog is not part of the development group.
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Morningside Estates will feature 54 three-story townhouses averaging 3,500 square feet, with price tags ranging from $650,000 to $1.2 million, depending on buyers' special requests. The property is less than one mile from Ellicottville's main Washington Street hub and a short drive from Holiday Valley Ski Resort and HoliMont Ski Resort.
"Each new project seems to be raising the bar in the community," said Brian McFadden, executive director of the Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce.
The Jackson Hole-themed development will be constructed in multiple phases over the next five years, said Craig Marlatt, executive vice president of Ross Wilson & Associates. The Amherst-based development company is taking the lead in the project.
Pending final municipal approval and a green light from the New York State Attorney General's Office, construction and marketing will begin later this summer, with the first units ready to welcome homeowners by next summer.
Marlatt said his company originally wanted to construct a series of midpriced townhouses, but an internal consumer and marketing survey found a stronger demand for upper-end residential units.
"Ellicottville is really one of those special places that has that certain appeal," he said. "All of our research tells us there is sufficient demand for high-end homes in Ellicottville."
The townhouses will be marketed to a diverse market including Toronto, Pittsburgh and Cleveland, he said.
Broadcast Media Ideas, a Cleveland-based marketing firm whose clients include the Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce, has been retained to attract buyers.
Tim Kupinski is an architect with Foit-Albert Associates, the Buffalo firm hired to design the complex. He said Morningside Estates will play off of Ellicottville's picturesque background.
The units will come with a drive-in garage and two stories of living space. The development will have two- and three-bedroom models. All will have stone fireplaces in the interior and the option for exterior stone fireplaces. Another highlight: a two-story wall of glass offering a panoramic view of Ellicottville and the surrounding area.
"We tried to design something that's unique and doesn't look like all the other new units being developed in Ellicottville," Kupinski said.
Morningside Estates is the latest development in a residential and commercial building boom in Ellicottville. The town has issued or is considering issuing more than $250 million in building permits, including several new townhouse and condo complexes and a series of improvements and upgrades to Holiday Valley and HoliMont.
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com

 

Bemus Point, Chautauqua Lake

Officials Envision Renovated Bemus Point
By PATRICK L. FANELLI

 Telephone poles and overhead wires clutter Main Street in Bemus Point, which is crowded with pedestrians during the summer season. Village officials and local business owners are hoping to one day renovate a short section of Main Street and Lakeside Drive to make it more pedestrian friendly. P-J photo by Patrick L. Fanelli
3/26/2007 - BEMUS POINT — Looking out the village hall office window, Bryan Dahlberg, Bemus Point mayor, spies broken curbs, leaning telephone poles and overhead wires cluttered along Main Street.

A short drive away on Chautauqua Avenue in Lakewood, early morning pedestrians walk along brick-lined sidewalks dotted with benches and early 20th-century style lampposts — the air above empty since telephone, power and cable lines are buried beneath the ground.

Dahlberg dreams of the day Bemus Point's main thoroughfare will be just as pleasant on the eyes and just as friendly to foot traffic as Lakewood's central pedestrian business district.

''The appearance would be so nice, and to have the brick walkways and new sidewalks and to redo some of the parking, it would make it a nicer place for residents and for our visitors,'' Dahlberg said.

In August, Tony Caprino, Lakewood mayor, and Bill Evans, Lakewood Community Development Corporation chairman, dedicated the recently renovated Chautauqua Avenue — Lakewood's historic business district that deteriorated as Fairmount Avenue became the village's central retail spot.

The project was nearly 10 years in the making and cost $2.5 million, most of which was raised through private donors. Since the bulk of the work was completed a couple of years ago, new businesses have moved in to the neighborhood.

Thom Shagla, who owns the See-Zurh House restaurant on Main Street in Bemus Point, has been working behind the scenes to see if a similar project could be in the village's future.

''Bemus Point, to me, is the only true pedestrian community (in Chautauqua County),'' Shagla said. ''It's the only pedestrian community in Chautauqua County where everything can be walked to. We want to make that experience better.''

'A Wonderful Goal'

Shagla explained that curbs are non-existent in many places along Main Street and storm water doesn't drain properly since the road has gradually become a few inches too high.

He hopes the village can one day convince county and state officials to tear up a short section of Main Street and Lakeside Drive to repave the roads — and while that project is under way, utility lines can be buried underground.

''That would be the ideal time to take a lot of the old antiquated telephone polls and these tons of wires and put them down underneath,'' Shagla said. ''Being a seasonal place here, it could cause a lot of disruption, but in the final analysis it would make the community look really nice.''

It's not the first time the idea has come up. County Legislator Richard Babbage, R-Bemus Point, served as village mayor during the early 1990s and said the idea of giving Main Street a facelift wasn't even a new thought then.

''What a wonderful dream that would be, a wonderful dream and a wonderful goal — but the bottom line is money,'' said Babbage, who predicted rebuilding the street would not be a high priority because it isn't in bad condition.

Dahlberg says county or state highway crews would have to be involved because the village could never fully fund a project of that magnitude.

''One of the things we run into as far as the situation with the way Main Street looks is it's a county-maintained state highway inside the village. We don't seem to get sometimes our fair share, we think,'' Dahlberg said. ''If the county doesn't have any extra money, and if the state doesn't have any extra money, this thing won't fly.''

Village officials believe a renovated pedestrian thoroughfare could have a significant economic impact on the village, which already draws tens of thousands of visitors during the summer season.

Dahlberg notes that Bemus Point is unique because everything in the village is within walking distance — visitors can get their hair cut, buy groceries, shop, go to the bank, eat, hang out in the park, swim, launch a boat and take a ride on the Bemus Point-Stow Ferry without walking more than a couple of blocks.

Pie In The Sky

Evans, who led the effort to renovate Chautauqua Avenue in Lakewood, attests to the challenges of a project like the one Shagla hopes will one day be a reality.

''It was a long, long, long process. The obstacles are tremendous,'' Evans said. ''They'll need to have someone in Bemus Point — one, two or three people — who are really committed to doing this, because it isn't going to happen unless you have that.''

Aside from logistics, the biggest obstacle seems to be money. The Lakewood project cost $2.5 million, $1.5 million of which came from private donors after several years of fund raising. Community leaders originally believed the project would cost $900,000 — and $450,000 was donated at the start of the fund-raising effort by Betty Fairbanks and her late husband, Reg Lenna.

''The interesting thing for us was we were able to get the ball rolling by getting some private benefactors to step up first,'' Evans said.

Shagla believes it would be difficult to raise that kind of money in Bemus Point.

''The problem we have here is they consider this a wealthy area since so many people come here and buy second homes. Well, you know, not all of us make $200,000 a year and live in half-million-dollar houses,'' Shagla said. ''There is a misconception that there is a lot of wealth around here.''

Dahlberg remembers privately raising money for a new playground in recent years. He said it was tough, and that was only a fraction of what a major capital undertaking like renovating Main Street would cost.

Right now, there isn't even a plan in place — just a general objective and a vague notion of how it could work. Shagla hopes the village will one day be able to obtain state grant money to jumpstart the project, while village board members wonder if the 40-unit $15 million condominium project underway on Lakeside Drive will expand the tax base enough to help as well.

But the Chautauqua Avenue project began the same way — some general objectives and vague notions.

''We took a long time to develop the plan,'' Evans said. ''It's extremely important to have a good plan.''
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com


 

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Chautauqua County Fishing

Chautauqua County Fishing

Spring brings better fishing Spring has sprung and numerous fishing opportunities present themselves. Ice fishing is going to get scary with the warm trend and rainfall in the forecast for the weekend.

There have been reports of fair-to-good catches of yellow perch on Lake Erie, by anglers trekking 1 to 1 1/2 miles offshore from Sturgeon Point. Live minnows on perch spreaders have been the ticket, but conditions are going to get risky.

Lee Weber at Weber's Bait & Tackle (736-2465) reports that anglers can do great at the same area, right after ice out, in a well-equipped boat. Something with some deep sides and enough horsepower to get you off the lake in a hurry when the weather takes a turn for the worse.

Bill's Hooks in Dunkirk (366-0268) reports that trout fishing has improved off the Probst Platform over the hot-water discharge area in the Dunkirk harbor. White Power bait is reported to be the hot bait and early morning usually is the time for best results. This area has limited space so fishing with one rod when space gets cramped is suggested. Both brown trout and rainbows have been reported.

As of Wednesday local creeks have also been producing fish from all reports, but continued snow melt and a hard rainfall can quickly change that scenario.

Rick Miller in Irving reports that smaller creeks, like Silver Creek and Walnut Creek, were producing more trout than the Cattaraugus Creek, which was running a tad muddy. Lee Weber in Evans reported that several trout were caught out of Big Sisters Creek.

Lisa Green at Happy Hooker Bait & Tackle (736-5815) reports that as of Wednesday Chautauqua Lake still had lots of safe ice and hungry, smaller-sized pan fish. Since walleye season closed March 15 the fishing pressure has diminished, but anglers continue to hook up with pan fish out of Burtis Bay, white perch out of Maple Springs and Maple Grove, and yellow perch out of Mayville.

Calendar: This Saturday the Red House Chapter of Trout Unlimited will present a trout/steelhead seminar at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club located on Mullet St.in Dunkirk (take Route 5, turn toward the lake at the Country Fair Store). The event runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will feature four speakers: Jim Markham from the Dunkirk-based DEC Fisheries Station; Nick Poinessa, expert class fly tier, fly fisherman and guide; Steve Wascher, pro muskie fly fishing guide /fly tier/fly fisherman ;and Alberto Rey, internationally recognized artist and steelhead guide. The event is free and open to the public.

Bear Lake Rod & Gun is having a two-day hunter safety training course starting on Friday from 5-10 p.m. and returning on Saturday from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. This course will focus on spring turkey hunting, compliments of instructor Rich Lazarczyk. Pre-register before Friday at Cassadaga Shurfine. For information call 595-3917.

Steak shoot Sunday at Westfield Fish & Game starting at noon. Open to the public. They will also offer a hunter safety training course on Monday, April 2 from 7-10 p.m. and returning on Saturday, April 7 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Call 326-3218 for information.

Ripley Rod & Gun will host a steak and ham shoot April 1 starting at noon.

The Chautauqua Lake chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation will host its annual fund-raiser banquet at Vullo's Restaurant on April 5 starting at 6 p.m. Call Ed Sanderson at 665-5471 or Budda Haskins at 326-3531 for tickets and information.

Gene Pauszek is an outdoor columnist for the OBSERVER For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com draft by rickandjuliarealtors 8:01:00 AM Delete

1 – 1 of 1

Chautauqua County Comedy Show

Comedy Show Begins Tonight
By NICHOLAS L. DEAN

 Local radio station 103.1 FM The Fox will hold a ''Last Comic Standing'' contest tonight at Shawbucks. Disc jockeys Jason Sample, left, and John Erickson, right, will host the event.

P-J photo by Nicholas L. Dean



Funny Business

Radio Station To Hold ''Last Comic Standing'' Contest Tonight

Event Is An Open Mic Audition And One Contestant Will Win A Gig At The Reg Lenna Civic Center
3/22/2007 - Anyone with a joke to tell and a few free hours to kill tonight could earn themselves a stand-up gig at the Reg Lenna Civic Center or other prizes, simply by participating in a ''Last Comic Standing'' contest being held by 103.1 FM The Fox and Shawbucks.

The first event of its kind for the local radio station and Jamestown bar, tonight's comedy show begins at 8 p.m. and is open to anyone above the age of 21. Registration to participate as a comedian begins at 7 p.m.

''We were just thinking about what we can do at this time of the year that's fun and new to do,'' said Marcus A. Maloney, station manager and Media One Group general sales manager. ''We were sitting around one day and thought — 'Why don't we try doing a comedy show?'''

More than just a stand-up event, Maloney and disc jockeys Jason Sample and John Erickson said the focus of tonight's event is to spotlight the community and its many comedians. The first in a series of three comedy nights being held as part of the contest, tonight's open mic is the only opportunity to enter the three-week-long event.

According to contest details, the top 10 performers from tonight's show will be asked back for a second round of judging on Thursday, March 29. The comedians selected to move on in the contest will be announced on the radio Friday morning. Of the 10 who perform next week, five will be asked back for an April 5 show — where one person will be chosen as the winner.

In addition to other prizes which contestants will receive just for participating, the winner will open for the Nobodies of Comedy performance at the Reg Lenna Civic Center on April 28.

All material should be in good taste — within reason.

''It shouldn't be X-rated. Not Andrew Dice Clay stuff,'' Sample said. ''We're fine with Rated-R material, a George Carlin kind of witty and smart material. If somebody wants to use a little bit of profanity, that will be fine. Everyone will be 21 years old at the show, so it is for adults.''

Unlike contest shows such as American Idol, judges of the local ''Last Comic Standing'' contest will not be overly critical of performers.

''We don't want to put that pressure on anybody,'' Maloney said. ''We don't want someone to feel intimidated or be afraid that they're going to be criticized in public. We're not going to rate anybody in that sort of form.''

According to Sample and Maloney, if the three nights go well, the local ''Last Comic Standing'' contest could become a regular yearly event.

Hosted by Sample, Erickson and Bill Dorrion, the event will be judged by Jeff Erickson, of the Arts Council; Lee Cain, of Subway and Chad Eckloff, host of Blue Screen Radio. To register, call Sample by at 487-1151.
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living Visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com

Chautauqua County Fishing

Spring brings better fishing
 Gene Pauszek
3/22/2007 - Spring has sprung and numerous fishing opportunities present themselves. Ice fishing is going to get scary with the warm trend and rainfall in the forecast for the weekend.

There have been reports of fair-to-good catches of yellow perch on Lake Erie, by anglers trekking 1 to 1 1/2 miles offshore from Sturgeon Point. Live minnows on perch spreaders have been the ticket, but conditions are going to get risky.

Lee Weber at Weber's Bait & Tackle (736-2465) reports that anglers can do great at the same area, right after ice out, in a well-equipped boat. Something with some deep sides and enough horsepower to get you off the lake in a hurry when the weather takes a turn for the worse.

Bill's Hooks in Dunkirk (366-0268) reports that trout fishing has improved off the Probst Platform over the hot-water discharge area in the Dunkirk harbor. White Power bait is reported to be the hot bait and early morning usually is the time for best results. This area has limited space so fishing with one rod when space gets cramped is suggested. Both brown trout and rainbows have been reported.

As of Wednesday local creeks have also been producing fish from all reports, but continued snow melt and a hard rainfall can quickly change that scenario.

Rick Miller in Irving reports that smaller creeks, like Silver Creek and Walnut Creek, were producing more trout than the Cattaraugus Creek, which was running a tad muddy. Lee Weber in Evans reported that several trout were caught out of Big Sisters Creek.

Lisa Green at Happy Hooker Bait & Tackle (736-5815) reports that as of Wednesday Chautauqua Lake still had lots of safe ice and hungry, smaller-sized pan fish. Since walleye season closed March 15 the fishing pressure has diminished, but anglers continue to hook up with pan fish out of Burtis Bay, white perch out of Maple Springs and Maple Grove, and yellow perch out of Mayville.

Calendar: This Saturday the Red House Chapter of Trout Unlimited will present a trout/steelhead seminar at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club located on Mullet St.in Dunkirk (take Route 5, turn toward the lake at the Country Fair Store). The event runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and will feature four speakers: Jim Markham from the Dunkirk-based DEC Fisheries Station; Nick Poinessa, expert class fly tier, fly fisherman and guide; Steve Wascher, pro muskie fly fishing guide /fly tier/fly fisherman ;and Alberto Rey, internationally recognized artist and steelhead guide. The event is free and open to the public.

Bear Lake Rod & Gun is having a two-day hunter safety training course starting on Friday from 5-10 p.m. and returning on Saturday from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. This course will focus on spring turkey hunting, compliments of instructor Rich Lazarczyk. Pre-register before Friday at Cassadaga Shurfine. For information call 595-3917.

Steak shoot Sunday at Westfield Fish & Game starting at noon. Open to the public. They will also offer a hunter safety training course on Monday, April 2 from 7-10 p.m. and returning on Saturday, April 7 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Call 326-3218 for information.

Ripley Rod & Gun will host a steak and ham shoot April 1 starting at noon.

The Chautauqua Lake chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation will host its annual fund-raiser banquet at Vullo's Restaurant on April 5 starting at 6 p.m. Call Ed Sanderson at 665-5471 or Budda Haskins at 326-3531 for tickets and information.

Gene Pauszek is an outdoor columnist for the OBSERVER
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com
 

Monday, March 19, 2007

Peek'n Peak

Peek'n Peak, TOUR announce extension of Nationwide Tour event
 
Mar. 19, 2007
Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. -- Peek'n Peak Resort & Conference Center and the PGA TOUR announced Monday an extension of the Peek'n Peak Classic tournament agreement through 2011.
Tournament officials also announced an increase in the purse from $560,000 to $600,000 this year, escalating to $725,000 in 2011.
The 2007 edition of the Nationwide Tour event will be played June 25-July 1 at the Peek'n Peak "Upper Course" in Findley Lake, NY, near Erie, PA. GOLF CHANNEL will televise the event, one of 16 Nationwide Tour tournaments they will air in 2007.
"This tournament is one of the most significant events we do at Peek'n Peak. It brings national exposure to our resort and to the region, and it's a real pleasure for all of our staff members to work with the PGA TOUR staff and players," said Brad Gravink, General Manager of Peek'n Peak.
"Winning at Peek'n Peak helped my career a great deal," said former champion and current PGA TOUR member Kevin Stadler. "It did wonders for my confidence. I didn't have much of a career prior to winning there, so it launched the career I now have. I love the area around Findley Lake and the whole week is so nice. The community does a wonderful job embracing the tournament and making the players feel welcome."
"The Nationwide Tour has enjoyed an excellent relationship with Peek'n Peak Resort since 2002 and we are very pleased to announce we will return through 2011," said Nationwide Tour president Bill Calfee. "The players love the golf course as well as the wonderful hospitality that is extended to them. With two playoffs and two other single-shot victories in the first five playings, the tournament always provides great drama and excitement for the fans and I'm sure this year will be no different."
The Peek'n Peak Classic was first played in 2002. Its past champions include Stadler, Patrick Moore, Guy Boros, Esteban Toledo and John Merrick last year in a playoff. All five were played on the "Upper Course".
The tournament's charitable recipients are the American Cancer Society and The Foundation for Cancer Research and Education. They are two of the hundreds of organizations that benefit from Nationwide Tour events across the United States and contribute to the PGA TOUR's umbrella support of charity.
 
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Chautauqua Watershed

Watershed Conservancy To Conduct Assessment
By The Post-Journal Staff

3/19/2007 - The Chautauqua Watershed Conservancy is conducting a stream and watershed assessment on the stream and its tributaries in Busti and Lakewood which collect water from the Baker Street Extension, Southwestern Drive, Sunset Drive, Mall Boulevard and Fairmount Avenue areas, and flows into Chautauqua Lake at the Lakewood Rod and Gun Club.

Eurasian watermilfoil, a major nuisance plant in Chautauqua Lake, and the target of hundreds of thousands of dollars of control efforts annually, is a major problem in the area of the lake directly fed by the stream. The plant grows most abundantly in fresh deposits of sediments and nutrients which annually accumulate from the stream. Chautauqua Lake's plants and algae blooms are fed by excessive amounts of soils, nutrients and fertilizers reaching the lake via lawns, parking lots, rooftops, streets, storm drains and streams.

John Jablonski, Chautauqua Watershed Conservancy executive director, working with scientist Gregg Antemann of the Carolina Wetlands Services, will, with the permission of landowners, survey the stream and its tributaries to identify and evaluate stream bank erosion sites as to their severity; sources of excessive storm water or nutrients and opportunities for stream and watershed enhancements to reduce storm water discharge to streams, stabilize stream banks, reduce erosion, control flooding and increase groundwater recharge.

The team anticipates doing its field investigations beginning Wednesday.

When the initial investigation is complete, the conservancy will contact landowners to seek their partnership in implementing conservation projects controlling runoff and erosion addressing those conditions which promote nuisance lake plant growth.

''The success of this project will depend upon the voluntary participation of watershed landowners,'' Jablonski said. ''This investigation is funded by private membership donations to the Conservancy. No county government funds are involved.''

Kathy Sullivan, Busti town supervisor, sent a letter to landowners in the watershed area encouraging them to allow access to their properties for this study.

''The town of Busti is making every effort to address the root causes of Chautauqua Lake's sedimentation, algae and plant problems,'' she said. ''The town Highway Department, under the leadership of Gene Johnson, has begun implementing erosion control projects on its drainage system and is participating on this project.''

Founded in 1990, the conservancy's mission is to preserve and enhance the water quality, scenic beauty and ecological health of the lakes, streams and watersheds of the Chautauqua region. It has lead efforts resulting in the conservation of more than 500 acres of important watershed lands across Chautauqua County and 1.7 miles of Chautauqua Lake and outlet shoreline.

For more information, call Jablonski at 664-2166 or e-mail chautwsh@netsync.net.
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com
 

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Jamestown Savings Bank Ice Arena
Skating With Celebrities Part Of Ice Show div class=auth>By SCOTT KINDBERG

3/18/2007 - Excellence on Ice will return to the Jamestown Savings Bank Ice Arena this spring, featuring a new time and a new concept.

Billed as ''America's Most Spectacular Community Ice Show,'' the annual event, which will be held twice on Saturday, May 5, will not only feature about 100 students of the Jamestown Skating Academy, but also three segments called, ''Skating with Jamestown's Celebrities.''

The ''celebrities'' are Kevin Carroll, Time Warner Cable 8 sports director; Tom McFall, Chautauqua County Youth Hockey Association coach and hockey school director; and Ian Morgan, a Jamestown High School student and Raiders Varsity hockey team member. They will be performing a skating routine along with a Skating Academy medal winning partner ala ''Dancing with the Stars.''

Carroll will be paired with Lindsay Erickson of Jamestown; McFall with instructor Meghan Howe of Conneaut, Ohio; and Morgan with Grand Island's Taylor Firth, a United States National competitor. Although there will be no judges, the ''winner'' of the ''pairs competition'' will be determined by audience vote. The ''couple" with the most votes — the audience will receive a ballot upon entering the arena — at the end of the two shows will be the winner.

''Skating with Celebrities was a huge hit on television last season,'' said Kirk Wyse, who is the co-director of the JSA with Lenel van den Berg. ''Programs like these have captured the attention of America and we want to capture the attention of the Jamestown community by presenting our own local version on ice.''

The votes will be counted carefully by Jamestown certified public accountant John Lloyd and the winner will be announced in the Sunday edition of The Post-Journal. Only the winners' vote total will be announced. The other couples will ''tie'' for second place. The winning celebrity will receive a check for $1,000 made out to the celebrity's pre-determined favorite charity.

''This is a contest for charity,'' Wyse said. ''Because our local celebrities have agreed to participate in the show, it's going to help bring in a new audience. Excellence on Ice would like to give back to the charity of their choice in recognition of their efforts.''

Excellence On Ice, now in its 10th year, is sponsored by Windstream Communication, WKSN, The Post-Journal, and The Warren Times Observer. Tickets are available beginning April 30. For more information, call 664-6609.

''This is our chance to use the skills we learned when we were with the Ice Capades and Holiday on Ice that are not used in competitive skating,'' Wyse said. For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Ellicotville New York

Spring Skiing

Actually, the Spring Skiing turned out alright. The ice melted but didn't slush too badly, and I had plenty of time to ski around any giant dirt runs that appeared. Most people avoided the sloaps this weekend, so the hills were wide open.
We figured this was the end of the season, and I hear it was in the 50's this week, but somehow it's 27 degrees and snowing again today…apprently the only non-ski-like weekend in eight weeks was during my visit!!


Friday, March 16, 2007

Spencer Hotel, Chautauqua, New York

Art Seminar Packages at the Spencer Hotel, Chautauqua, New York
 
In celebration of their 100th anniversary, the Spencer Hotel, in Chautauqua, New York, has teamed up with the not-for-profit Washington Community Arts and Cultural Center by hosting a series of planned Art activities.
 
Chautauqua, New York (PRWEB) March 15, 2007 -- In celebration of their 100th anniversary, the Spencer Hotel, in Chautauqua, New York, has teamed up with the not-for-profit Washington Community Arts and Cultural Center by hosting a series of planned Art activities.
With the vision of continuing the magical experiences of the creative arts at Chautauqua, the Spencer is offering customized workshops by renowned artists, writers and musicians of multiple disciplines.
Some of the workshops throughout the 2007 include poetry, pottery classes, jazz guitar lessons, concert and composition workshops, watercolor and acrylic painting classes, drawing and illustration, visual arts for children, theater and performing arts, and playwriting. To enhance the packages; wine tastings, spa treatments, food themes and relaxation exercises will be incorporated into each themed workshop.
The Spencer, a small, literary-themed boutique hotel located on the grounds of the illustrious Chautauqua Institution, is celebrating 100 years of history in 2007. The Spencer operates as a small, independent hotel property with a distinctive literary theme which celebrates the life and works of history's most revered authors. Each room at the Spencer pays homage to a renowned author, depicting scenes from their most famous works. For instance, in the C.S. Lewis (Room 302), a mural dedicated to 'The lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe" depicts the image of stepping into Narnia, complete with the famed Wardrobe. In the Isak Dinesen (Room 203), a play on the "Out of Africa" theme allows guests to slumber under their very own dream-like safari tent while the Jules Verne (Room 306) gives the playful feel of sleeping up in a balloon traveling "Around the World in 80 Days."
 
Phone: 800-398-1306. Web: http://www.thespencer.com
Media Contact: Helen Edgington or Rachel Briggs, Phone: 716-357-3785
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com
 

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Chautauqua Belle For Sale

Belle For Sale
 Belle For Sale
3/13/2007 - A ''For Sale'' sign rests at the helm of the Chautauqua Belle at Mayville Lakeside Park. The Sea Lion Project Ltd. board of directors, which oversees the steamship, have put the vessel up for sale in hopes of seeing it run again on Chautauqua Lake. The deadline for bids is a couple days away. Board members will hold a meeting Thursday to review the bids, and organization members will vote on the sale at a meeting Wednesday, March 21. A two-thirds vote by the voting members and court approval is required before the sale can proceed. P-J photo by Patrick L. Fanelli
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com
 
 

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Chautauqua Countys Cockaigne Ski Area

How to beat cabin fever — hitting the slopes at Cockaigne
 I'm a wanderer ...

P-J photos by Loren Kent

Chuck Fye, Mike Eaker and Fritz Worosz have more than 60 years combined experience on the ski patrol.
 
3/10/2007 - For many people a cold winter day can become a precursor for depression. Usually, by February, cabin fever sets in and the effects of being snowbound begin to take their toll. The best medicine is getting out into the sunshine — even if the daily high temperature is only 10 degrees.

Last Saturday was a typical, dreary winter day. The sky was gray and overcast as snowflakes flew and a bitter wind chill made me think twice about leaving the house.

The night before, I had made plans with my friend, Linda Johnson. We would meet at Cockaigne Ski Center for a quick lunch and an elusive drink — something we have joked about for many years, but never accomplished.

The Ski Center in Cherry Creek offers the perfect location for getting outdoors and being with people in a family atmosphere. Little did I know my trip to Cockaigne would become a full-fledged learning experience.

During my conversation with Linda, she mentioned the events scheduled at the Ski Center that day: an afternoon ski race and an evening party hosted by the Southern Tier Brewing Company were slated. Count me in.

''Don't tell me you're finally coming to ski,'' Linda teased. ''I'll have to notify the ski patrol so you don't hurt yourself or some innocent skier.''

Linda knows me well. We go way back — to the time when President Gerald Ford visited the Ski Center and even before. She knows that I don't ski. I fall, I slide, I tumble and more often I crash into things. Whatever I try to do on skis can never be confused with skiing.

When I arrived there was an excellent base of beautiful fresh snow and the trails were hopping with skiers. Following a very slow start to the season, the recent freezing temperatures and several feet of natural snow were a welcomed sight at the Ski Center.

Still teasing, Linda introduced me to several members of the ski patrol. One member, Mike Eaker, is a good friend and is always quick with a smile and a joke. Like the other ski patrol members he is serious about protecting people — he's been doing it since 1976.

Mike's daughter, Kory, is a snowboard instructor at the Ski Center. His son, Casey, was taking part in the ski races. They are a family that skies together.

With his usual, outgoing nature Mike offered to give me a short tour as a ski patrolman and I accepted. We hit the trails, keeping to the edges and watching skiers and Mike talked about what the ski patrol does. In a nutshell, these remarkable people keep the slopes safe; attend to injuries and save lives.

Fritz Worosz, another ski patrolman, was also on duty and on the slopes — as he has been since 1964. When Fritz started working at Cockaigne its beautiful European ski lodge wasn't built yet. Skiers and patrol members huddled in heated tents at the bottom of the slopes. Forty-three years later, Fritz is still tending to the needs of Cockaigne's patrons, only the tents are gone.

There were no injuries to attend during my patrol, just lots of people having lots of fun. No cabin fever here.

I quickly realized that Cockaigne's ski patrol members blend into their surroundings. They do their job well and are largely unnoticed. Their emergency medical training is extensive and they make it look effortless. In 2003, the local ski patrol members received national recognition as a first-rate team of professionals — a hard earned and well deserved honor.

The small communities of Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Warren Counties are full of interesting places like Cockaigne Ski Center and remarkable people like Linda Johnson, Mike Eaker and Fritz Worosz.

When was the last time you canoed on Lake Chautauqua, checked out the view from Jake's Rocks above Kinzua Dam, or visited with friends at Midway Park or the Salamanca Rail Museum?

Stick with me during the weeks ahead and I'll re-introduce you to the people and places that entertain locals and tourists alike while bringing character and charm to our hometowns
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com
 

Friday, March 09, 2007

Peek'n Peak Ski Resort

Sunday is Scout Day at Peek'n Peak Ski Resort

Findley Lake, NY - Peek'n Peak Resort and Conference Center will host Scout Day this Sunday, March 11 from 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. All Scouts who show their Scout ID can purchase an all day, all area lift ticket to ski or snowboard for $20 ($12 off spring rates).
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Chautauqua Lake Bemus Point Condo

Bemus Point Condo Developers Can Finally Begin Building
By PATRICK L. FANELLI

 Pictured is an artist's rendering of the Bemus Point condominium construction project.
3/7/2007 - BEMUS POINT — Nearly 12 months have passed since dozens of Bemus Point residents packed the village meeting hall, some in favor of a four-story 40-unit condominium building along Lakeside Drive, and some intent on scuttling the project.

Little has changed at the site since then. Developers have dug a 385-foot water well and are almost finished with a back-up one, but the wide open expanse next to the Lenhart Hotel that will one day accommodate the condominiums looks the same as it did one year ago.

But that is expected to change in the coming weeks. On Tuesday, the Bemus Point Planning Board approved the final component of the construction project, the landscaping design — and developers say they will now obtain a building permit, breaking ground April 1.

''Hopefully, they can move things along so when the weather breaks they can get started on what they need to do,'' said Bryan Dahlberg, Bemus Point mayor.

It has been a hectic year for the Planning Board since its colleagues on the zoning board approved the site plan in March. Since then, Planning Board members have had to work with the developers on virtually every detail of the project, such as the placement of fire hydrants, which was settled at Tuesday's meeting.

The biggest challenge for Planning Board members was the fact that this was by far the largest construction project they have faced in years, according to Don Mozzi, board chairman.

''This has been a big undertaking,'' Mozzi said. ''It was a learning experience for everyone.''

But they rose to the challenge, according to Dahlberg — and there were more than a few handshakes and congratulations when Tuesday's meeting wound to a close.

''They've really been thorough,'' Dahlberg said. ''I can't say enough about the time they put into it. They worked very, very hard.''

In recent weeks, village officials have expressed some frustrations with the project since developers seemed to be making headway at a slow pace.

According to developer Lee Chilcote, he and his colleagues have been busy obtaining approval for every element of the project and cutting through the red tape. He didn't receive permission from the state to even sell housing units until two days ago.

''We'll start April 1 with the earthwork,'' Chilcote said. ''We're trying to do the project in 14 or 15 months, but we would like to shorten that considerably.''

Chilcote says he has a list of potential tenants who have heard about the project and are interested in buying one of the 40 condominium units, which are expected to be priced between $300,000 and $500,000 each.

''I think it's a very attractive project,'' Chilcote said. ''It's the first new condominium project in the Chautauqua region in a number of years, except for the (Chautauqua) Institution. I think there's a pent-up demand.''

The project has been a controversial one ever since it first came to the planning board two years ago. Opponents, especially those living around the site, felt it was simply too big at four stories in height.

Proponents felt that the project was essential for the growth of Bemus Point. Not only would it bring more residents to the area and boost local businesses, but it would also expand the tax base, since it would add millions of dollars in taxable property to the village.

Now that the project is finally moving forward. Chilcote says he will work through the local real estate firms to fill the space.

Send comments to pfanelli@post-journal.com.
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com

 

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Peek 'n Peak

This competition would be for snowboarders only on March 10th at Peek'n Peak Resort in Findley Lake, NY. There will be an entire fee of $3 witch will go to Habitat for Humanity. Registration 9am-11am in the Retreat Lodge, contest will start at 11:30am.
There will be a male and female division. Twelve and older will be accepted there will be set age division for the competition to keep it competitive, they will be 12-15, 16-18, 19-29, 30 and up. Each competitor under eighteen will need a parent or guardian to sign a release form, eighteen and older will also need to sign a release forms. Helmets are required to enter the competition.
Peek'n Peak
The competition format will be as followed, all competitors well have 2 runs and judges will pick the five best riders form each division and will have two more runs and the top three will be picked. The competitors will be judge on three areas of there riding amplitude, technicality, and style/linking of tricks. There will be a pa system for announcing the riders and playing music for warm up and during the event. Also each competitor will have a number for judging. The event will be held on Doncaster Jumps Rails and Boxes. Prizes include snowboards and gear.
Sponsors include:Buffalo Wild Wings Bar & Grill, Bay City Orthocare, Karbon, and ROME Snowboards
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com
 

Chautauqua deer,bear harvest numbers

OUTDOORS: State DEC releases deer, bear harvest numbers
By Bill Hilts
Niagara Gazette
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced results from the 2006 deer hunting seasons.

More than 189,000 whitetails were taken by hunters last fall. Included in that take were 96,600 antlered bucks and 92,500 antlerless deer. The total harvest was up about 9,000 animals — the first time in four years the deer harvest has increased.

While the DEC anticipated a slight increase after management actions from 2004 and 2005, which were designed to rebuild and stabilize the deer herd in many parts of the state, many hunters did not. In fact, many hunters reported one of their poorest seasons on record as far as sighting deer and actually harvesting an animal.

The big four harvest counties in the state were no different than year's past, with Steuben (10,229), Cattaraugus (8,492), Allegany (8,341) and Chautauqua (6,810) leading the way in the state. Rounding out the top five, St. Lawrence County chalked up 6,442 deer. Erie County came in at 5,380 deer and Niagara at 1,897. Both of those numbers were down from 2005.

Some other interesting facts that came out in the recent announcement:

n No new Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) infected animals were reported, after testing 8,000 deer across the state.

n There were only 35 hunting related shooting accidents, making it the fourth safest season on record. Of that total, 20 were associated with big game hunting. There was only one fatality.



NY takes almost 800 bears

Empire State big game hunters scored on 796 black bears in 2006. Of that total, 318 were taken in the Adirondacks, 113 in the Allegany Zone and 365 in the Catskills. The 113 killed in Western New York in the Allegany Zone were just slightly below the record harvest of 119 set in 2005. Of that total, 51 were taken by bow and arrow — tying the record set in 2005.

Another record set during the bear season was the fact that 177 bears were taken in the Catskills by bow and arrow.

Of the overall totals in the state, 74 were taken during the early season, 237 were taken during the archery seasons, 25 were taken during muzzleloader season and 460 were taken during the regular seasons in the Northern and Southern zones of the state.
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com
 



Monday, March 05, 2007

Chautauqua

Historic Vessels Company Making Progress On Sea Lion, Belle Sale
By PATRICK L. FANELLI

The Sea Lion remains drydocked at Barcelona Harbor along Lake Erie outside Westfield.

P-J photo by Patrick L. Fanelli
3/4/2007 - Gradually, bit by bit, the Chautauqua Lake Historic Vessels Company is being transformed.

In May, it was unclear if the Bemus Point-Stow Ferry would even operate that summer; the Chautauqua Belle remained drydocked for the third consecutive season; thousands of dollars was scattered across multiple bank accounts; and there wasn't a clear-cut board of directors or membership to manage the group.

But in October, a group of residents concerned with the fate of the ferry, the Belle and the non-profit organization's other attraction, the Sea Lion, took control and are making progress on all three fronts.

''The board members on it — I've never run across a bunch of educated individuals like they are,'' said Fred Croscut, a county legislator and member of the board of directors.

The group has met every month since they took control of the Historic Vessels Company in October, catching up on six years' worth of back taxes.

''We're chipping away at things,'' said Paul Stage, board president. ''The board has been re-established and we've got a pretty good handle on where we are financially. We're getting up to speed.''

According to Stage, group members have split up into three groups to decide how best to handle the three separate attractions that belong to the organization — which is officially called the Sea Lion Project Ltd.

First, there's the ferry, which was out of commission until Ellery resident John Cheney fixed it up over the summer with a handful of others and got it running again in August. A $15,000 grant from the state and thousands of dollars raised at a fund-raiser by the Bemus Point Historical Society helped cover the cost.

''The ferry has never been in better shape,'' Croscut said.

The Chautauqua Belle remains drydocked at Mayville Lakeside Park and could be sold in the coming weeks. Recognizing that it would be extremely difficult to run themselves, Sea Lion Project officials put it up for sale and will authorize the transaction only if it remains on Chautauqua Lake and it's for a reasonable price.

''I'm expecting right now three bids,'' said Duane Buchweitz, board member. ''Hopefully one will come in that is acceptable to the group as a whole. If the board and the general membership doesn't approve any of these bids, then we're committed to try to operate it under the Historic Vessels Company.''

See HISTORIC on Page A-3

HISTORIC From Page A-1

The bids are due by April 14. The board will look them over the following day and the matter will come before the general membership at a meeting the following week.

The third vessel, the Sea Lion, is a working replica of a 16th-century, three-masted, square-rigged British sailing vessel, which was unexpectedly sold to the Buffalo Maritime Society in 1992 and returned to Chautauqua County only after it sunk in Buffalo Harbor.

Cheney re-acquired the vessel seven years ago and hauled it down to Barcelona Harbor, where he and a handful of others continue to restore it to this day. There are numerous options they are looking at, though the jury is still out on whether it will ever sail again on Chautauqua Lake.

''We're hoping to,'' Cheney said. ''That's the purpose of our restoration group. Whether it sails in my lifetime, I don't know.''

According to Stage, group members are considering permanently breaking up into three separate groups to manage each vessel. The Belle would be managed by private interests, the Sea Lion Project Ltd. would oversee the Sea Lion, and a separate group would run the ferry.

''There are three diverse groups in the Sea Lion Project,'' Stage said. ''That's what's always been an issue. It's very difficult to get a 15-man board working in the same direction on all three of those things.''

Send comments to pfanelli@post-journal.com.
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com


Sunday, March 04, 2007

Chautauqua Real Estate On the Rise

On the rise
By TIM LATSHAW OBSERVER Staff Writer

OBSERVER Photo by Jason Ferguson

227 Chestnut Street, Fredonia
3/4/2007 - Local real estate agencies appear mostly pleased with last year's market — having largely avoided the bursting of any "bubbles"— and are looking toward a steady year ahead.



After housing markets hit record highs in 2005, predictions of imminent downfall and disaster began making rounds across the country. And while a drop in the sales of existing single family homes did occur last year — a national decrease of 8.1 percent — the housing pictures for the state, and particularly Chautauqua and Cattaraugus counties, look rosier.

In Chautauqua County, 2006 single family home sales decreased only 4.9 percent from the prior year, from 1,103 to 1,049. That percentage places the county in the upper half of performance in the state, who saw an average decrease in sales of 6.5 percent.

While sales of Chautauqua County homes slipped, their median selling prices went up from $69,000 in 2005 to $71,500 in 2006; a 3.8 percent increase compared to a 2.8 percent decrease statewide.

For Chautauqua County Board of Realtors President Earl Johnson, even the slight decrease in sales is encouraging in the scope of state and national figures.

"Chautauqua County did very well," he said. "We experienced an increase in the sales price, which is good, and a much smaller decrease in sales activity than in the state and especially nationwide."

While Cattaraugus County only tends to sell a bit more than half of the homes Chautauqua County does annually, the growth of its housing sales have been impressive percentagewise. The county saw a 9.1 percent increase in single-family home sales from 2005 to 2006 — from 680 to 742 — and saw an even bigger increase of 14.1 percent between 2004 and 2005. The median price of homes also saw an increase of 1.4 percent from $69,050 to $70,000.

Many realtors believe that the area is seeing a comeback of families who are returning to the area from larger cities to take advantage of lower prices and more space.

"Chautauqua County is noted as being one of the areas in the U.S. where you get the best buy for your dollar for a home," said Thomas Hartung, a licensed broker at Hartung Real Estate in Silver Creek.

While taxes seem to be a common complaint in the state, Hartung noted, in terms of buying a home, mortgage rates on an average $70,000 house here compared to the national median average of more than $220,000 makes the purchase much more affordable for families.

"People have sold properties in Florida and are relocating right back where they came from in Chautauqua County," Hartung said. "I've had several customers who have done that."

Bonita Saletta of Midtown Realty Co. in Fredonia has seen at least two homes originally built to house college students taken up by families instead.

"People have moved away and now they're coming back," she said. "And now the college housing that has recently been built, people are buying that housing for family use."

Hartung theorizes that, while Chautauqua County has more attractions to homeowners such as Chautauqua Lake and Lake Erie, the more rural Cattaraugus County is attractive to those who work in Erie County and are seeking open, affordable space.

"The value there is excellent and it's really not too far from the Buffalo market," he said. "Instead of going southwest, they just go south of Erie County."

Although housing figures for the beginning of 2007 have fallen in other parts of the nation, local realtors are not worried about seeing the same slides in this area.

"The market always maintains here," Saletta said. "I don't believe we were in the bubble that burst and we just consistently sell. These areas may be a little higher, a little lower, but there are always sales here."

Johnson agrees. "It's an absolutely excellent time to buy because with the market taking a small slowdown, there is a better than average available inventory or number of homes for sale at this time and interest rates are still very favorable," he said.

Even with good opportunities, however, realtors advise cautious research and the help of knowledgeable professionals when buying a home.

"Become as intelligent as you can and always investigate all the facets of purchasing a home," Hartung said. "Educate yourself about the mortgage process and always have a home inspection. We have very few new homes around here and they all need to be checked out."
Published in the Jamestown Post Journal
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com

Chautauqua Local Events

Events
3/10/2007 - Sharon Bennett Book Signing , Allegheny Artistry, 106 East Main St., Youngsville , Warren County Sharon's first published book "Thy Will Be Done". Come view the book and have it signed. Refreshments for all. Cost is FREE. , More Info. at: www.alleghenyartistry.com , 814-563-3349. 3628

3/10/2007 - Improv Comedy Shows , The Tropicana Room of The Lucy-Desi Playhouse, 2 W. 3rd St., Jamestown , Chautauqua County 7:30 p.m. - Family Show (PG). 10 p.m. - Adult Show (R). Reservations appreciated. Cost is $5. , More Info. at: http://www.theunexpectedguests.com or 397-4245. 3640

3/10/2007 - Grape Expectations Wine Festival , Clatrion Inn and Conference Center, Dunkirk , Chautauqua County 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wineries along the Chautauqua/Lake Erie Wine Trail will provide samples and sell a wide variety of wines. The event will also feature food, musical entertainment, prize drawings and special dinner and overnight packages at the Clarion. Cost is $10 per person. , More Info. at: 366-6200. 3641

3/13/2007 - Preparation For Flu Pandemic , White Horse Inn, Cassadaga , Chautauqua County Guest speaker Dr. Berke will speak on "Preparation For Flu Pandemic." Come learn what you can do to protect yourself and your family. Send reservations to Martha Burdick, 5206 W. Lake Rd., Dunkirk, NY 14048 or call 672-5546. Cost is $10.00 per person. , More Info. at: www.lwvchautauqua.org. 3622

3/13/2007 - Free Computer Classes , 324 Central Avenue, Suite 11, Dunkirk , Chautauqua County 1-3 p.m. on March 13 Intro to Microsoft Word and March 15 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Learn the basics to get you started. Improve the look of your documents by using program tools. Save and retrieve a document and recognize basic program icons. March 20th from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and March 22 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Intro to Microsoft Excel. Learn how to format, enter, edit, copy, protect, retrieve and save files. March 27th from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Intro to Microsoft XP. Is Windows a mystery to you? Learn to work comfortably in this environment with "hands on" introductory computer training. March 29th from 1 - 3 p.m. Intro to Internet. The Information Superhighway. This introductoy will focus on World Wide Web. Please call to register as there is limited space. Cost is FREE. , More Info. at: www.everywoman.org. 3639

3/17/2007 - Irishman's Heart to the Ladies (A Celtic Celebration) , 1891 Fredonia Opera House, 9 Church St., Fredonia , Chautauqua County 8 p.m. In a nod to the famous Irish song, our St. Patrick's Day celebration features a stage full of the finest female Celtic musicians and dancers around. Cost is $15 general Admission , $12 Opera House members. , More Info. at: 716-679-1891, www.fredopera.org. 3357

3/19/2007 - Free Acupuncture and T'ai Chi Seminar , Crowe Commons, Silver Creek High School, Silver Creek , Chautauqua County 7:00 p.m. Donation of non-perishable food for the S.C. Food Pantry greatly appreciated. Cost is FREE. , More Info. at: 716-934-0066. 3629

3/22/2007 - A Couple of Blaguards starring Malachy McCourt , 1891 Fredonia Opera House, 9 Church St., Fredonia , Chautauqua County 8 p.m. This autobiographical comedy by Frank (Angela's Ashes) and Malachy McCourt hilariously tells of the brothers' schooldays in Ireland and young adulthood in America. The Opera House performance stars co-author Malachy McCourt. Cost is $25 for Reserved Seating , $23 for Opera House members. , More Info. at: 716-679-1891, www.fredopera.org. 3355

3/23/2007 - Brides Against Breast Cancer Gown Sale , S 3950 McKinley Parkway, Blasdell, NY, Dunkirk , Chautauqua County Hosted by McKinley's Banquet & Conference Center, Friday March 23rd from 10 a.m. to 8p.m.; and Saturday, March 24th from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thousands of Designer & Name Brand Gowns size 4 to 24 on sale from $89 to $799. All proceeds benefit Making Memories Breast Cancer Foundation, granting wishes to terminally ill breast cancer patients. Cost is FREE. , More Info. at: www.makingmemories.org , 818-6001. 3627

3/24/2007 - 7th Annual Farm Toy Show , Back room of Tractor Supply, Vineyard Dr., Fredonia, NY, Fredonia , Chautauqua County 7th Annual Farm Toy Show, March 24, 2007, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Buy/Sell/Trade Cost is $2 , under 12 free. , More Info. at: 716-679-1602 , toyman@netsync.net. 3632

3/25/2007 - American Legion Band of the Tonawandas , Reg Lenna Civic Center, Jamestown , Chautauqua County 4:00 p.m. Under the direction of William Weikert, this award-winning band will have you on your feet listening to classics, broadway hits, and patriotic songs. Cost is season pass OR $20- adult, $15- sen., children free. , More Info. at: www.jamestownconcertassociation.org , 716-487-1522. 3633

3/31/2007 - Chocolate Walk , Downtown Warren, Warren , Warren County Saturday 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. Cost is Limited ticket sales. , More Info. at: www.wccbi.com. 3557

4/10/2007 - Retro Weekend , 1493 Thornton Rd, Cherry Creek , Chautauqua County Dig out your bell bottoms and neon/spandex and join us for a Retro weekend celebration. Cost is N/A. , More Info. at: cockaigne.com. 3528

4/11/2007 - Alpine Classic sponsored by Pepsi , 1493 Thornton Rd, Cherry Creek , Chautauqua County 11 a.m. Cost is $6 race fee , lift ticket additional charge. , More Info. at: cockaigne.com. 3531

5/18/2007 - David Mallett Folk Music , 1891 Fredonia Opera House, 9 Church St., Fredonia , Chautauqua County 8 p.m. The award-winning folk singer/songwriter from Maine "has the warmth of a flannel shirt, the comfort of a quilt and the heart of a poet." Cost is $15 general Admission . , More Info. at: 716-679-1891, www.fredopera.org. 3356

6/9/2007 - Relay For Life of Falconer/Jamestown , Falconer Central School Track, Falconer , Chautauqua County 12:00 pm - 5:00 am. The American Cancer Society Relay for Life is a celebration of hope and survivorship. Team members take turns walking or running around a track for 18 hours to fight cancer. The event opens with a Survivor Lap, as the community, family and friends honor survivors of all forms of cancer. At nightfall, hundreds of luminaries are lit, each bag dedicated to a loved one who either won the battle with cancer, or remembering those who have been lost to the disease. Cost is $10 registraion fee per person. Community is welcome to stop by to show their support.. , More Info. at: 1-800-ACS-2345 , www.acsevents.org/relay/ny/jamestown. 3589

6/9/2007 - Relay For Life of Dunkirk/Fredonia , SUNY Fredonia Outdoor Track, Fredonia , Chautauqua County 12:00 p.m. - 7:00 a.m. The American Cancer Society Relay for Life is a celebration of hope and survivorship. Team members take turns walking or running around a track to fight cancer. The event opens with a Survivor Lap, as the community, family and friends honor survivors of all forms of cancer. At nightfall, hundreds of luminaries are lit, each bag dedicated to a loved one who either won the battle with cancer, or remembering those who have been lost to the disease. Cost is $10 registration fee per person. Community is welcome to come and show their support.. , More Info. at: 1-800-ACS-2345 , www.acsevents.org/relay/ny/fredonia. 3591

6/23/2007 - Old Home Week Parade , Main Street, Allegany NY, Allegany , Cattaraugus County This is the final night of Allegany's Old Home week which runs from Tues 6/19 - Sat 6/23. Following the parade, there will be carnival rides, refreshments available at the food and beer tents and a band at the carnival lot pavilion. Anyone interested in participating in the parade can contact the parade committee at PO Box 95, Allegany, NY 14706. Cost is FREE. , More Info. at: www.allegany.org. 3582

7/26/2007 - 2007 Summer Frolic Festival , Tune Town Concert Grounds, Titusville , Warren County Summer Frolic is a 5-day camping festival featuring daily workshops, potlucks, lectures, book signings, activism presentations, children's activities and games. Each night is filled with musical performances and drum circles. Pre-registration prefered, see website for details. Cost is $35 per adult, $20 per child, under 5 free. , More Info. at: www.frolicproductions.org/SummerFrolic.html. 3572

8/18/2007 - Operation Equip India - 10th Anniversary Celebration , Midway Park, Jamestown , Chautauqua County 10th Anniversary Celebration of the ministry of Operation Equip India, a disability ministry of Joni and Friends reaching India's disabled. The ministry was founded by Jamestown native Tim Swauger and his wife Aruna and is supported by many churches and individuals in the Chautauqua County area. Contact Dave Rishell for more details. Cost is FREE , bring dish to pass. , More Info. at: 716-665-6517.
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Buying your Chautauqua Home

TAX PLANNING FOR LIFE'S EVENTS
Buying a Second Home

Believe it or not, a change in the tax law gets a lot of credit for a recent boom in the number of Americans buying second homes. The change allows most home sellers to take up to $500,000 of profit tax free. Before 1997, sellers generally had to buy a more expensive home to avoid being taxed on profit from a sale. Now you can trade down to a less expensive house and use profit from the sale of the big place as a down payment on a second home.
A recent study found that more than one in five second-home buyers were using equity from the sale of a primary residence to finance their purchase. There's no doubt that many baby boomers are in their peak-earning years and therefore more able to afford a second home. And, rapid price appreciation of homes in many areas has certainly stoked demand for second homes as terrific investments. Here's a quick look at the tax rules for second homes.
Mortgage interest. If you use the place as a second home -- rather than renting it out as a business property -- interest on the mortgage is deductible just as interest on the mortgage on your first home is. You can write off 100% of the interest you pay on up to $1 million of debt secured by your first and second homes and used to acquire or improve the properties. (That's a total of $1 million of debt, not $1 million on each home.) The rules that apply if you rent the place out are discussed later.
Property taxes. You can deduct property taxes on your second home, too. In fact, unlike the mortgage interest rule, you can deduct property taxes paid on any number of homes you own.
If you rent the home. Lots of second-home buyers rent their property part of the year to get others to help pay the bills. Very different tax rules apply depending on the breakdown between personal and rental use. If you rent the place out for 14 or fewer days during the year, you can pocket the cash tax-free. Even if you're charging $5,000 a week, the IRS doesn't want to hear about it. The house is considered a personal residence, so you deduct mortgage interest and property taxes just as you do for your principal home.
Rent for more than 14 days, though, and you must report all rental income. You also get to deduct rental expenses, and that gets complicated because you need to allocate costs between the time the property is used for personal purposes and the time it is rented. If you and your family use a beach house for 30 days during the year and it's rented for 120 days, 80% (120 divided by 150) of your mortgage interest and property taxes, insurance premiums, utilities and other costs would be rental expenses. The entire amount you pay a property manager would be deductible, too. And you could claim depreciation deductions based on 80% of the value of the house. If a house is worth $200,000 (not counting the value of the land) and you're depreciating 80%, a full year's depreciation deduction would be $5,800.
You can always deduct expenses up to the level of rental income you report. But what if costs exceed what you take in? Whether a loss can shelter other income depends on two things: how much you use the property yourself and how high your income is.
If you use the place more than 14 days, or more than 10% of the number of days it is rented -- whichever is more -- it is considered a personal residence and the loss can't be deducted. (But because it is a personal residence, the interest that doesn't count as a rental expense -- 20% in our example -- can be deducted as a personal expense.)
If you limit personal use to 14 days or 10%, the vacation home is considered a business and up to $25,000 in losses might be deductible each year. That's why lots of vacation homeowners hold down leisure use and spend lots of time "maintaining" the property. Fix-up days don't count as personal use. The tax savings from the loss (up to $7,000 a year if you're in the 28% tax bracket) help pay for the vacation home. Unfortunately, holding down personal use means forfeiting the write-off for the portion of mortgage interest that fails to qualify as either a rental or personal-residence expense.
We say such losses might be deductible because real estate losses are considered "passive losses" by the tax law. And, passive losses are generally not deductible. But, there's an exception that might protect you. If your adjusted gross income (AGI) is less than $100,000, up to $25,000 of such losses can be deducted each year to offset income such as your salary. (AGI is basically income before subtracting your exemptions and deductions.) As income rises between $100,000 and $150,000, however, that $25,000 allowance disappears. Passive losses you can't deduct can be stored up and used to offset taxable profit when you ultimately sell the vacation house.
Tax-free profit. Although the rule that allows home owners to take up to $500,000 of profit tax free applies only to your principal residence, there is a way to extend the break to your second home: Make it you principal residence before you sell. That's not as wacky as it might sound. Some retirees, for example, are selling the big family home and moving full time into what had been their vacation home. Once you live in that home for two years, up to $500,000 of profit can be tax free. (Any profit attributable to depreciation while you rented the place, though, would be taxable. Depreciation reduces your tax basis in the property and therefore increase profit dollar for dollar.)

For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com

Friday, March 02, 2007

Chautauqua County Events

Events
3/13/2007 - Preparation For Flu Pandemic , White Horse Inn, Cassadaga , Chautauqua County Guest speaker Dr. Berke will speak on "Preparation For Flu Pandemic." Come learn what you can do to protect yourself and your family. Send reservations to Martha Burdick, 5206 W. Lake Rd., Dunkirk, NY 14048 or call 672-5546. Cost is $10.00 per person. , More Info. at: www.lwvchautauqua.org. 3622

3/13/2007 - Free Computer Classes , 324 Central Avenue, Suite 11, Dunkirk , Chautauqua County 1-3 p.m. on March 13 Intro to Microsoft Word and March 15 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Learn the basics to get you started. Improve the look of your documents by using program tools. Save and retrieve a document and recognize basic program icons. March 20th from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and March 22 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Intro to Microsoft Excel. Learn how to format, enter, edit, copy, protect, retrieve and save files. March 27th from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Intro to Microsoft XP. Is Windows a mystery to you? Learn to work comfortably in this environment with "hands on" introductory computer training. March 29th from 1 - 3 p.m. Intro to Internet. The Information Superhighway. This introductoy will focus on World Wide Web. Please call to register as there is limited space. Cost is FREE. , More Info. at: www.everywoman.org. 3639

3/17/2007 - Irishman's Heart to the Ladies (A Celtic Celebration) , 1891 Fredonia Opera House, 9 Church St., Fredonia , Chautauqua County 8 p.m. In a nod to the famous Irish song, our St. Patrick's Day celebration features a stage full of the finest female Celtic musicians and dancers around. Cost is $15 general Admission , $12 Opera House members. , More Info. at: 716-679-1891, www.fredopera.org. 3357

3/19/2007 - Free Acupuncture and T'ai Chi Seminar , Crowe Commons, Silver Creek High School, Silver Creek , Chautauqua County 7:00 p.m. Donation of non-perishable food for the S.C. Food Pantry greatly appreciated. Cost is FREE. , More Info. at: 716-934-0066. 3629

3/22/2007 - A Couple of Blaguards starring Malachy McCourt , 1891 Fredonia Opera House, 9 Church St., Fredonia , Chautauqua County 8 p.m. This autobiographical comedy by Frank (Angela's Ashes) and Malachy McCourt hilariously tells of the brothers' schooldays in Ireland and young adulthood in America. The Opera House performance stars co-author Malachy McCourt. Cost is $25 for Reserved Seating , $23 for Opera House members. , More Info. at: 716-679-1891, www.fredopera.org. 3355

3/23/2007 - Brides Against Breast Cancer Gown Sale , S 3950 McKinley Parkway, Blasdell, NY, Dunkirk , Chautauqua County Hosted by McKinley's Banquet & Conference Center, Friday March 23rd from 10 a.m. to 8p.m.; and Saturday, March 24th from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thousands of Designer & Name Brand Gowns size 4 to 24 on sale from $89 to $799. All proceeds benefit Making Memories Breast Cancer Foundation, granting wishes to terminally ill breast cancer patients. Cost is FREE. , More Info. at: www.makingmemories.org , 818-6001. 3627

3/24/2007 - 7th Annual Farm Toy Show , Back room of Tractor Supply, Vineyard Dr., Fredonia, NY, Fredonia , Chautauqua County 7th Annual Farm Toy Show, March 24, 2007, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Buy/Sell/Trade Cost is $2 , under 12 free. , More Info. at: 716-679-1602 , toyman@netsync.net. 3632

3/25/2007 - American Legion Band of the Tonawandas , Reg Lenna Civic Center, Jamestown , Chautauqua County 4:00 p.m. Under the direction of William Weikert, this award-winning band will have you on your feet listening to classics, broadway hits, and patriotic songs. Cost is season pass OR $20- adult, $15- sen., children free. , More Info. at: www.jamestownconcertassociation.org , 716-487-1522. 3633

3/31/2007 - Chocolate Walk , Downtown Warren, Warren , Warren County Saturday 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. Cost is Limited ticket sales. , More Info. at: www.wccbi.com. 3557

5/18/2007 - David Mallett Folk Music , 1891 Fredonia Opera House, 9 Church St., Fredonia , Chautauqua County 8 p.m. The award-winning folk singer/songwriter from Maine "has the warmth of a flannel shirt, the comfort of a quilt and the heart of a poet." Cost is $15 general Admission . , More Info. at: 716-679-1891, www.fredopera.org. 3356

6/23/2007 - Old Home Week Parade , Main Street, Allegany NY, Allegany , Cattaraugus County This is the final night of Allegany's Old Home week which runs from Tues 6/19 - Sat 6/23. Following the parade, there will be carnival rides, refreshments available at the food and beer tents and a band at the carnival lot pavilion. Anyone interested in participating in the parade can contact the parade committee at PO Box 95, Allegany, NY 14706. Cost is FREE. , More Info. at: www.allegany.org. 3582

7/26/2007 - 2007 Summer Frolic Festival , Tune Town Concert Grounds, Titusville , Warren County Summer Frolic is a 5-day camping festival featuring daily workshops, potlucks, lectures, book signings, activism presentations, children's activities and games. Each night is filled with musical performances and drum circles. Pre-registration prefered, see website for details. Cost is $35 per adult, $20 per child, under 5 free. , More Info. at: www.frolicproductions.org/SummerFrolic.html. 3572

8/18/2007 - Operation Equip India - 10th Anniversary Celebration , Midway Park, Jamestown , Chautauqua County 10th Anniversary Celebration of the ministry of Operation Equip India, a disability ministry of Joni and Friends reaching India's disabled. The ministry was founded by Jamestown native Tim Swauger and his wife Aruna and is supported by many churches and individuals in the Chautauqua County area. Contact Dave Rishell for more details. Cost is FREE , bring dish to pass. , More Info. at: 716-665-6517
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com