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Sunday, August 31, 2008

We Have to Talk

This year has been a difficult year for the nation in Real Estate.

All Real Estate is local what is happening in one market may or may not be happening in another market.

We have fielded countless calls this year from potential buyers wanting to know if the Chautauqua Lake Market has collapsed, is going to collapse, is over extended, over priced, forclosed on, you state the question we have heard it.

As the owner of this blog, partner in Real Estate Advantage and current President of the Chautauqua County Board of Realtors I'll clarify the current lake home market.

1) We never had the bubble we don't have the burst.

2) Forclosures are almost unheard of in the lake market. The only lake property forclosure I'm aware of was in May of 2007 3488 Mason St Hadley Bay Stow, NY MLS # 1014086 was sold by Wells Fargo. Listed for $189,000 sold for $177,000 which was what is was worth there was no deal and no steal.

3) The current market pricing is flat it was in 07 it will be in o8. Lake properties do not appreciate like a hockey stick they go up, level and then go up again. When the next round of appreciation starts and what percentage it will be is a crystal ball question. Keep in mind nobody is digging a whole and filling it water to create another lake. When the Indians discovered Chautauqua Lake land value was zero that only lasted about a week or so then they started selling. Ha Ha.

4) If you are following Chautauqua Lake Real Estate any price reductions you are seeing are normal they are generally homes that should have never been at there original price in the first place. This is perfectly normal. Sellers in this market don't have to sell anymore than you have to buy and they do frequently list a wish price even though their agent advises differently. Pricing is not a science there are many variables that determine a lakefronts value and there are no cookie cutter comparables. The primary reason the homes are sold is lack of use. Rarely is there a motivation that requires a sale. If you are a purchaser looking for that you will wait a long, long, long, long time. I've seen homes on the market for a couple of years at the same price and sell within 5-10% of list. You never know.

5) From 1/1/08 to 8/31/08 there have been 20 Lakefront closings on Chautauqua Lake. These are single family homes with lakefrontage. No condos, canals, lakerights etc. I'm using single family lakefronts only because they are the best barometer of the market and the rest of the market follows. The past four years single family lakefront home sales have average 47 units closed with the strongest closing period in the 3rd and 4th quarter. We are on track.

6) List to sale price has averaged 91% for 2008. That is an average we have had numerous sales with multiple offers that have sold for list or greater.

In summation if you are in a position to purchase a second home now is as good a time as ever. We invite your questions, comments, ideas and concerns. Julia and I and our fellow Realtors are here to help you make an informed decision.

Thank you,

Rick McMahon



For More Information On Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living Visit: http://www.chautauqualakehomes.com/

Chautauqua County looking for something fun

MAYVILLE - With gas prices remaining high, and the summer season winding down, many Chautauqua County residents are looking for something fun and exciting to do before the kids have to head back to school and the crisp autumn winds begin to blow.
Earlier this summer, Chautauqua County Executive Gregory J. Edwards encouraged all County residents to consider a "staycation" and remain closer to home for their summer vacation.

With the U.S. economy sagging, and the nationwide average price for unleaded regular gas surging past $4 per gallon this summer, a pricey destination holiday was well beyond the reach of many Americans.

Not wanting to experience a summer devoid of well-deserved R&R, many families traded in their travel plans for a stay-at-home vacation. These "staycations" took many forms, including backyard camping "expeditions" and romantic "escapes" to a local hotel.
"Thankfully, in Chautauqua County, there are plenty of things to see and do for those who didn't want to spend a lot of their hard earned money to travel out of the region," Edwards said.

One example is Chautauqua Institution, which experienced one of its best seasons.
"Chautauqua Institution enjoyed a remarkable 2008 season," said Director of Institution Relations and Public Affairs Michael Sullivan. "Attendance was up in almost every category, including both long-term and day tickets.
Sullivan said that their visitors praised every element of the program from dance, symphony and opera to theater, their lecture programs, visual arts and recreation.

"This coming on the heels of a very successful 2007 season is especially rewarding," Sullivan concluded.
Keeping the "staycation" theme in mind, Edwards said there are plenty of opportunities for fun and excitement in Chautauqua County this upcoming Labor Day weekend.

The Findley Lake Harvest Festival is taking place through Sunday, Aug. 31. For more information, you can go to http://www.findleylakeinfo.org./
Cross Roads in Westfield will be holding their Labor Day Countywide Yard Sale today and Monday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at their market on County Road 21. For more on that, go to www.thecrossroadsmarket.com.

Jamestown's Annual Labor Day Festival will take place this Sunday from noon until 8:30 p.m.
And, perhaps one of the most exciting events that will be happening in Chautauqua County this summer, and in the past few summers, will "explode" on Sunday.

"Light the Lakes" is a groundbreaking historical event where the sky will be lit up with one of the largest fireworks display in North America that can be seen from space.
It will be one of the largest fireworks shows in America - so powerful it can be seen from NASA's space station!

All of Chautauqua County is invited to participate as this event draws spectators regionally, as well as locally, to our area.

For more information, go to http://www.ilovenylakes.com./

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



Friday, August 29, 2008

Chautauqua County Light the Lakes Spectacle on Sunday


Light the Lakes spectacle on Sunday

By SHIRLEY WEST
POSTED: August 29, 2008
Chautauqua County will be visible from space on Sunday during the Light the Lakes fireworks display going off simultaneously in six locations. "This is the first year Light the Lakes will amaze spectators and will deliver an explosive spectacular like no other," said Dan Dalpra, founder of Light the Lakes & the Bemus Bay Pops. "It is a ground breaking historical event where we light the Chautauqua Sky in one of the largest fireworks displays in North America that can be seen from space! All of Chautauqua County is invited to participate as this event draws spectators regionally as well as locally to our area."
Light the Lakes will include a collaboration of different events throughout Labor Day weekend leading up to the spectacular lighting of the Chautauqua Sky at 10:10 p.m. At each "take-off" location the fireworks will run simultaneously to a live music broadcast via radio feed. As well as radio feed, there will also be a live television feed broadcasted from an airplane above as the fireworks display takes place.
"This will be a gathering of families and friends enjoying simple, no cost, old fashioned pleasures like music on the waterfront, farmer's markets, antique stores, swimming, boating, fishing and a seven-location fireworks finale," Dalpra said. "It's what Chautauqua County is all about."
The show is specially programmed to run simultaneously to live music. Spectators will be treated to a broad range of music from patriotic American songs, pop, country, rock 'n roll and so much more.
Bemus Point, Findley Lake, Jamestown, Lakewood/Mayville/Chaut-auqua, Midway State Park, and Westfield/Barcelona will host not only fireworks but events all weekend including the Lake Harvest Festival in Findley, Bemus Bay Pops, Cassadaga Valley Labor Day Weekend Festival and more.
"Westfield is excited to participate in this event," said Town Supervisor Martha Bills. "This weekend we will have the Farmer's Market in Moore Park, the CrossRoads yard sale, a Mardi Gras celebration at Zebro's, a corn roast at Barcelona Market Caf and Ottaway Park will be open Sunday night for family picnicking and fireworks viewing."
The event was planned as a major tourist attraction for the area.
"During Light the Lakes, the goal is to attract 250,000 tourists to our area during the festival," said County Executive Greg Edwards. "Most tourists leave the area before Sunday night. By keeping them in the area for an extra day we can add significant revenue for the county."
The economic impact of this event is estimated to generate $4.8 million to the region, according to event planners.
"Light the Lakes was created as an event that the entire county could collectively promote as one major destination," Dalpra said. "Marketing this area as one with all its unique layers of diversity from each community makes Chautauqua County a more competitive destination and appealing to attract mass visitors to our region."
Light the Lakes is sponsored by New York State Senator Catharine M. Young, Media One Group, SE93 & WJTN, Jamestown Post-Journal, WGRZ TV, Bemus Bay Pops, Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce, Chautauqua County Visitor's Bureau, County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency, and Chautauqua Lake Association.
For more information visit the Light the Lakes Web site at http://www.ilovenylakes.com/
Comments on this story may be sent to swest@observertoday.com

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



Friday, August 22, 2008

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Holiday Valley Mountain Resort in Ellicottville, Cattaraugus County.


A world-class bowhunting tournament is coming to Ellicottville, Cattaraugus County, and you can still participate. (Provided photo)



Arrows have replaced ski poles at Holiday Valley Mountain Resort in Ellicottville, Cattaraugus County.

The International Bowhunting Organization's 2008 World Championships and Archery Festival is today through Sunday on the slopes of the world-class ski resort, once dubbed by The New York Times "the ski town that Aspen used to be like."



More than 2,000 competitors from more than 20 countries will compete in field archery events. About 500 3-D targets of deer, bear and other wildlife have been set up in the sprawling woods of the resort.



Field archery has been called "golf with a bow" as contestants take aim at targets placed at various locations on a course. It is the closest simulation of hunting there is in the sport and the world's best have gathered in western New York to test their skills at distances of up to 40 yards.



"New York and Pennsylvania are two of the five states with the largest bowhunting numbers," says IBO president Ken Watkins. "We think having the tournament at Holiday Valley will allow more archers to attend the festival and give them a chance to participate with archers from around the world in the most prestigious competition in 3-D archery."


For a registration fee of $40, shooters who haven't qualified for the IBO world tournament can take part in an open-class shoot, competing on the same world-level courses.


The IBO has been so impressed with Holiday Valley's ability to host its world tournament, and how it has been embraced by the Ellicottville business community, that it named the resort the host for 2009 and 2010 as well.



Brian McFadden of the Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce attended world shoots in Anderson, Ind., and Snowshoe Mountain, W.Va., where they were held for seven years, and immediately knew he wanted to lobby to bring the event to western New York.



"I'm certain this will be an outstanding location in every aspect," he says. "This event is for everyone. It's a chance for our visitors to see (Ellicottville) and the best in world class 3-D archery competition."



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






Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Fredonia Opera House Chautauqua County








Come on out for a great evening of side-splitting comedy, awe-inspiring juggling and toe-tapping song & dance ...




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


Monday, August 18, 2008

The Bemus Point-Stow Ferry




The Chautauqua Belle, left, cruises past the Bemus Point-Stow Ferry during a recent appearance in the narrows of Chautauqua Lake.
Submitted photo

The Bemus Point-Stow Ferry should be in good condition for at least another decade after the vessel underwent extensive repairs and upgrades as part of a state-mandated 10-year inspection, operators say.

''The ferry is in shape to run another 10 years as far as I'm concerned,'' said Ellery resident John Cheney, who was instrumental in getting the ferry back up and running in 2006 and seeing it through this year's inspection.

The Sea Lion Project Ltd., the non-profit group that oversees both the ferry and the drydocked Sea Lion, spent a considerable amount of money to get the ferry in good enough shape to pass inspection, according to Cheney.

Work included an extensive paint job inside and outside the hull, replacement of the I-beams and struts and upgrades to the pulley system. Luckily, though, the engine - which was donated by Cummins several years ago - as well as the drive chain that propels the vessel through the water were in good shape going into the inspection process.
''An awful lot of work had to be done. When we got the list from the state, it was three pages long,'' said Paul Stage, who volunteers with the Sea Lion Project Ltd. ''We were hoping it would be a two- or three-week process, and it ended up being a two-month process.''

That's why the ferry was out of operation for much of the summer. Mayville village officials allowed the group to station the ferry at Mayville Lakeside Park, where it underwent repairs.

For the last couple weeks, though, the ferry has been back in operation at the narrows of Chautauqua Lake, carrying pedestrians and vehicles between Bemus Point and Stow in the middle of the almost 20-mile-long lake. The only other connection is the I-86 highway bridge, which is closed to pedestrians and bicyclists.

From now until Labor Day weekend, the ferry will be operating Friday evenings and Saturdays and Sundays. Operators don't charge a fee for trips, though the group relies on donations to keep the vessel operating - and they also rely on volunteers to operate and maintain it.

''By state standards, there's no way we could pay the required wages for captains and engineers on the ferry and make money at all,'' Cheney said. ''We've got six people who are the backbone of the whole deal.''

The ferry is said to be the one vessel of its kind that has continuously operated the longest. It has been operating since 1811, though it was at risk of being scrapped when the I-86 bridge was completed in 1982, according to an account of the ferry's nearly 200-year history.

That same year, the ferry was acquired by the group operating the Sea Lion, a working replica of a 16th-century, three-masted, square-rigged British sailing vessel that remains drydocked in Barcelona along Lake Erie and is in the process of being restored.
The lake's other historic vessel is the Chautauqua Belle, said to be one of only two genuine steamships in operation east of the Mississippi River. It has been under private ownership for the past two seasons, and Mathew Stage, Belle captain, brings it down to Bemus Point on a regular basis.

On those occasions, when both the Belle and the ferry are operating, it allows for a glimpse into history, says the younger Stage. In the old days, when trollies ran all the way around the lake bringing people to and from places like Celoron Park, the many steamships on Chautauqua Lake would continuously travel through the narrows past the ferry.

''It's really neat,'' Stage said of the joint appearances by both the Belle and the ferry, ''because when we go through our narrative, we say how a hundred years ago, all the steamboats had to blow the whistle when going through there.''

Reprinted from Jamestown Post Journal

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



Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Chautauqua Light The Lakes




Submitted photo
Light the Lakes is pleased to announce the first annual fireworks spectacular — an historic, record-breaking event for the entire region.

MAYVILLE - The Bemus Bay Pops, Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce, Chautauqua County Visitors Bureau, the County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency and New York State Senator Catharine M. Young are pleased to announce Light the Lakes - a ground-breaking, historical event that will light the Chautauqua Sky in one of the largest fireworks displays in North America that can be seen from space.
All of Chautauqua County is invited to participate as this event draws spectators regionally as well as locally.
Light the Lakes will take place during Labor Day weekend with the big "take-off" on Aug. 31.
There will be several locations for "takeoff" including: Bemus Point, Findley Lake, Jamestown, Lakewood, Mayville/Chautauqua, Midway State Park and Westfield/Barcelona.
"The idea was to create an event that the entire county could collectively promote as one major destination. When you market this area as one with all its unique layers of diversity from each community it makes us more competitive and appealing to attracting more visitors to our region." said Dan Dalpra, founder of Light the Lakes and the Bemus Bay Pops.
The event will include a collaboration of different events throughout the day leading up to the spectacular lighting of the Chautauqua Sky at 10:10 p.m.
At each "take-off" location the fireworks will run simultaneously to a live music broadcast via radio feed. As well as radio feed, there will also be a live television feed broadcasted from an airplane above as the fireworks display takes place.
"This exciting event could draw us national attention and become a huge annual event with unlimited economic opportunities. I am working with NASA to participate in the future with our fireworks being observed from the space station," Dalpra said.
The event is co-sponsored by Media One, Jamestown Post-Journal, and WGRZ TV, with support from Bemus Bay Pops, Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce, County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency, the Chautauqua County Visitors Bureau, Chautauqua Lake Association and New York State Senator Catharine M. Young.
For more information on Light the Lakes, visit www.ilovenylakes.com.
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Water Park In The Works











City of Salamanca Designates Developer for Water Park Resort




SALAMANCA - The City of Salamanca Common Council approved a "Land Disposition and Development Agreement" last week with Ross Wilson & Associates. The City has agreed to sell approximately 54 acres of property along State Park Avenue to Ross Wilson, who will be developing a 300 room Water Park Hotel and Resort.


The City purchased over 200 acres of property adjacent to Interstate 86, bordering the Seneca Allegany Casino & Hotel in 2006 with the intent to encourage private development and a mix of entertainment and retail uses. The property has been marketed to a variety of private developers.


Ross Wilson & Associates, a Development and Construction Management Company headquartered in Buffalo, New York, has been pursuing development of a water park hotel complex in the area, and will purchase a 54 acre portion of the property to develop a resort complex which is planned to include a 300 room hotel, an indoor and outdoor water park, a themed restaurant, a performing arts and conference center, on-site year-round recreational facilities, including nature trails, horseback riding trails, a sculpture park and landscape garden, and a possible public performance venue.


For the City, the project secures an anchor development for the State Park Avenue Area Economic Development Project, and the promise of long term job creation and tax benefits. According to Mayor Jeffery Pond, "This is a win-win situation for the City and surrounding area. A project of this magnitude will certainly stimulate the local economy and nicely compliments existing tourism destinations such as the Seneca Allegany Casino & Hotel, Allegany State Park and Ellicottville."


Kevin Greiner, a principal with the Ross Wilson partnership formed to develop the project, echoed the Mayor's sentiments. "We've been working for nearly two years to secure the right site for the water park, and the Salamanca location turns out to be perfect for the project. The City worked hard to complete a very fair agreement which protects their interests as well as our own. We believe in Salamanca as the next great upstate tourism and recreation destination. Our research indicates the project should be a great success, fits perfectly with the City's long term plans, and will help put Salamanca squarely on the tourist destination map."


Ross Wilson has been active in New York State real estate development and construction since 1994. The company has completed a wide portfolio of construction and development projects across New York State. Its most recent project is Morningside Estates - a 54 unit Town home development in Ellicottville.


For more information, please contact David Paoletta, City of Salamanca Director of Planning at 716-945-1881 or Kevin Greiner of Ross Wilson & Associates, Inc. at 716-698-0211.






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



Sunday, August 03, 2008

Bowhunting World Championships To Be Held At Holiday Valley


ELLICOTTVILLE - Holiday Valley Mountain Resort will host the International Bowhunting Organization's (IBO) 2008 World Championships from Aug 20 to 23.
 
The event will attract more than 2,000 contestants and their families from over 20 countries to compete for the world championships and $200,000 in cash and prizes.
IBO President Ken Watkins said the selection of Holiday Valley Mountain Resort in Ellicottville to host the 2008 IBO World Championship will bring the biggest title in archery and bowhunting back to New York.
 
''New York and Pennsylvania are two of the five states with the largest bowhunting numbers,''Watkins said. ''We think having the tournament at Holiday Valley will allow more archers to attend the festival and give them a chance to participate with archers from around the world in the most prestigious competition in 3-D Archery.''
The 2007 World Championships were held in Anderson, Ind., after a seven-year stint at Snowshoe Mountain in West Virginia.
 
The IBO 2008 World Championships will attract more than 8,000 competitors, family, friends and avid bowhunters. The event is expected to create a $4 million economic impact for the region. Members of Holiday Valley Resort and the Chamber of Commerce have attended the last two world Championships with the hope of bringing them to Ellicottville.
''The beautiful hills and woods surrounding Holiday Valley will be the perfect setting for this prestigious event,'' said Dennis Eshbaugh, president and general manager of Holiday Valley. ''The resort and the Village of Ellicottville can provide the lodging, entertainment, food and beverage and all the extra touches that will make this year's competition one to remember.''
 
''Having been to the last two World Championships, I am certain that this will be an outstanding location in every aspect'', stated Brian McFadden, executive director of the Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce. ''Ellicottville and its business owners have a unique way of embracing their guests, we make them feel that they are right at home here. This is an event for everyone; it's a chance for our visitors to see the best of the best in world class 3D archery competition.''
 
Holiday Valley will also host, the Holiday Valley Bowhunters Open, an event that lets non-qualified shooters compete on the same courses as the world qualifiers. The open will be a two-day event during the world championships.
Contestants can download a registration at www.ellicottvilleny.com. The entrance fee is $40.
 
For more information on Chautauqua Lake Real Estate & Living visit: www.chautauqualakehomes.com