Don Nelson Hired as BPO General Manager

BUFFALO, NY — The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra is very excited to announce that Don Nelson has been hired as general manager.

Mr. Nelson comes to the BPO from Spokane, Washington. There, he served as general manager of the Spokane Symphony for 14 years and the general manager of the Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox for six years. The positions saw him tackle responsibilities as diverse as developing the season’s programming, negotiating musician contracts, and serving on the theater’s renovation and design team.

Prior to his position in Spokane, he was with the Florida Philharmonic, first as a bassist, and then as the orchestra’s personnel manager and as festival manager. He holds a bachelor’s degree in music from the University of California, Santa Barbara and a master’s degree in non-profit management from Regis University.

“Don’s extensive experience as a musician and in orchestra and theater management make him a perfect fit for the BPO at this time. His musical knowledge is quite impressive. As the BPO looks to the next phase of its strategic plan, we are counting on Don to play a major role in our ongoing success,” said BPO Executive Director Daniel Hart.

Don, who arrived in Buffalo at the end of August, will be joined by his wife Vicki. They have two sons. Noah, a musician, lives in London with his wife Anna. Alex recently began medical school at Florida International University in Miami. Nelson enjoys skiing, lifelong learning and reading, and arranging music for cello and bass to perform with Vicki, who is an accomplished professional cellist.

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Steve Meyer for Assembly

Steve Meyer3a

There are only a few weeks left to go before election day this year, and we are fighting hard! However, we cannot win in November without your help. We still need to raise more money before election day so that we can fight off the distorted and phony attacks against us that our opponent will blast on the airwaves.

Please consider attending our fundraiser on Thursday, October 9th at 6pm with special guest Congressman Brian Higgins.

You can RSVP by clicking here: or calling (716) 833-0376. If you choose to be a sponsor for this event, we will include you in our printed program unless told otherwise. Thank you!


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FCC Ends Sports Blackout Rule

ralph wilson stadium

The Federal Communications Commission this morning voted to eliminate its sports blackout rules, putting pressure on the National Football League to do the same and open all pro football games to television coverage even when they’re not sold out.

“It’s a simple fact: the federal government should not be party to sports teams keeping their fans from viewing the games they want to see. Period,” FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said just before the unanimous vote.

The FCC’s other four commissions – including two who have roots in Western New York – agreed.

Commissioner Michael O’Rielly, who grew up in Lockport, noted that because of the NFL’s blackout policy, the historic “comeback” playoff game between the Buffalo Bills and Houston Oilers in 1993 was blacked out in Western New York.
Read more…

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Obama to Move to Doorman Building

WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—President Barack Obama has decided to move his family into a full-service doorman building in Washington, D.C., saying that “it just makes more sense right now.”

“It really will work better for us,” Obama said in a press conference Tuesday morning. “In addition to the doorman, there’s a guy at the front desk, and, if anyone comes to see you, the desk guy will call up to your apartment first to make sure it’s O.K.”

The senior doorman at the Obamas’ new building, Alex Kornash, seemed unfazed about providing security for the President. “I’ve been a doorman for twenty-three years,” Kornash said. “Someone doesn’t belong here, you tell them to go away. What’s so hard about that?”

The 2,140-square-foot, three-bedroom condominium that the Obamas will call home includes many amenities, including central air-conditioning, a washer/dryer and all new stainless-steel appliances, according to its real-estate listing.

In addition, when the President makes one of his frequent trips, “there’s someone to take in the mail and water the plants,” he said.

Since the President’s announcement of his move, there has already been considerable interest in the White House, mainly from foreign buyers, sources said.

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Free document shredding offered

shred recycling

The Better Business Bureau will present Secure Your ID Day with shredding events on Oct. 11.

The BBB invites individuals and businesses to have documents shredded for free. Papers containing social security numbers, dates of birth and other sensitive information will be disposed of safely in an attempt to prevent identity theft and fraud. Participants can bring up to three boxes or bags of documents.

Events will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Oct. 11 at several Tops Markets locations: 355 Orchard Park Road in West Seneca, 3865 Union Road in Cheektowaga, 3507 Mt. Read Blvd. in Greece and 2265 Downer St. in Baldwinsville.
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Amherst Social Worker Convicted of Health Care Fraud

Amherst resident Nina Jafari, 63, has fraudulently billed BlueCross and BlueShield for $125,000 in nemtal health services that she actually did not provide.  It’s easy to rip off such a huge sum of money from large system if there isn’t enough supervision.

Nina Jafari was caught telling her patients what to say to authorities if they were ever questioned concerning how well she took care of them.

She now faces a maximum of 10 years in prison.  Usually the sentences are shorter.
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While Amherst Has Raised The E-cigarette Issue, State And Federal Rules Are Needed


The Town of Amherst should be credited for at least attempting to tackle the issue of controlling smoking in a modern age in which the proliferation of vapor shops and electronic cigarettes is reshaping the landscape.

A Town Board member proposed a series of changes designed to discourage young people from smoking. Council Member Steven D. Sanders’ intentions in proposing the resolution were good, but the town should not have to go it alone. The state should take the lead.

Unfortunately, that hasn’t happened. As a result, municipalities are left to make their own rules. Hence, the Town Board considered several items, the most controversial involving whether to raise the legal age for buying tobacco products to 21, up from 18.

The board voted down that provision and decided not to go with several others, including: banning tobacco products in stores that have a pharmacy; prohibiting the sale of tobacco products within 1,500 feet of a school; forbidding the sale of flavored tobacco products and eliminating the use of e-cigarettes anywhere that smoking is banned.

Amherst would have been the first local community to impose such strict rules in an effort to deter young people from taking up the habit. Sanders made it clear that the effort was not meant to stop adults from smoking, but to stop the next generation of smokers from becoming addicted to tobacco products.

Anything that helps prevent young people from developing as dangerous a habit as smoking is worth trying.

Sanders’ concern should be applauded, but this is too important a matter to be left to an individual city, town or village. The state and federal governments should tackle the issue

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Amherst, Williamsville to Host Featured Events as Part of 2014 Buffalo Beer Week


Contact:  Danielle DelMonte  

Fifth annual Buffalo Beer Week returns to Western New York for largest celebration of craft beer brewing in region’s history

AMHERST, NY – Buffalo Beer Week will once again dominate the local craft beer scene as the 10-day celebration returns for its fifth year.  Running from Thursday, September 25th – Sunday, October 5th, 2014 Buffalo Beer Week will feature dozens of unique events at bars, pubs, restaurants, breweries, and other craft beer destinations throughout the Buffalo Niagara region, including many breweries that have opened over the last few months.

Multiple venues throughout Amherst and Williamsville will host several key Beer Week events, including:

Pizza Plant (7770 Transit Road, Williamsville)

  • ·         Friday, 9/28-9/29 from 6pm-12am – “Roll out the barrels” featuring a stellar lineup of “barrel-aged” beers on sale individually or by the Flight.
  • ·         Wednesday-Thursday, 10/1-10/2 from 6pm-12am – Dogfish Head Ancient Ales & Foods; complete lineup of Dogfish Head Ancient Ales on tap.

Brennan’s Bowery Bar (4401 Transit Road, Williamsville)

  • ·         Tuesday, 9/30 from 6-10pm – Smoked, Sours and Oddballs Beer Tasting; smoked favorites, a diverse selection of sours and some odd brews thrown in for fun.

Santora’s Pizzeria on Transit (3440 Transit Rd., Depew)

  • ·         Tuesday, 9/30 5-7pm – Resurgence Tapping (sponge candy stout & fall saison)

Williamsville Village Beer Week Tour de Pub (Williamsville Village)

  • ·         Sunday, 10/5, 12pm-5pm – Village pub crawl includes stops include Pizza Plant (Walker), Brioso, Glen Park Tavern, The Irishman, Creekview, Sorrentinos, and Eagle House. $5. Proceeds benefits March of Dimes.

“Since its inception in 2007, Buffalo Beer Week has become one of the most highly anticipated craft beer celebrations in the region and the various events continue to bring visitors from across Upstate New York, Southern Ontario, Ohio and Pennsylvania to Western New York,” said Willard Brooks, chairman of the Buffalo Niagara Brewers Association. “Successful growing festivals like Buffalo Beer Week and our first Buffalo Brewers Festival this past summer are unique ways we are celebrating the rebirth of craft brewing in the Buffalo Niagara region as well as successfully promoting the region as a destination for beer enthusiasts from all over the world.”

For more information about all of the great events taking place during Buffalo Beer Week, please visit

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FBI Director’s Award Given to Jeff Tricoli

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We’ve been out of town for a few days to share a wonderful celebration with our son Jeff and his family.

Jeff was awarded a 2014 Director’s Award from the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Thursday.  He earned his award for Outstanding Cyber Investigation.  He and his team launched an investigation in 2012 into the ongoing theft of intellectual property that is costing the U.S. billions of dollars and millions of jobs.  Knowing that 50 – 80 percent of these cyber intrusions come from China, this investigation uncovered overwhelming proof that a portion of these damaging thefts are state-sponsored.

The unprecedented indictments of five Chinese Army officers engaged in the cyber theft of American corporate trade secrets and other proprietary information serves as a deterrent to future state-sponsored cyber attacks against U.S. interests.

God bless our son and all the other wonderful men and women who won Director’s Awards for their exemplary work.  Our nation is all the safer for their work.

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PETA Announces “Aquatic Angel” Drones to Stalk Anglers While in the Field

Hands holding a fishing rod

According to a recent press release from the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), anglers will now find themselves being stalked by anti-hunters thanks to PETA’s new “Aquatic Angel” drones.

The “Aquatic Angel” is the newest tool from the anti-hunting group, following the release of their “Air Angel” drones released in the spring of 2013 to stalk hunters in the field.

Described as a “submersible technology,” PETA plans to use the drones to stalk fishermen and “combat anglers who fish in restricted areas, catch protected species, and or chum for sharks illegally.” According to PETA, the group is currently recruiting members and supporters to field-test the new drones in all bodies of water.

PETA plans to use the new drones on National Hunting and Fishing Day this Saturday, or what they are referring to as “Fish Amnesty Day.”  The release boasts a “beware to hunters and anglers: PETA could be watching.”

“The announcement of these drones comes as no surprise as PETA will stop at nothing to gain headlines,” said Nick Pinizzotto, USSA president and CEO. “The anti-hunting community continues to harass, threaten, and interfere with hunters across the country, which only further distances them from what mainstream America considers rational.”

The hunting community has seen an increase in backlash from anti-hunters in recent years thanks in part to new technology such as drones and social media. Hunters are now finding themselves the victims of cyber-bullying and are seeing an increase in interferences while hunting and fishing.

Recognizing these problems, USSA joined forces with sportsmen, conservation organizations and outdoor personalities to initiate the Hunter Advancement Task Force to combat the growing threat to our outdoor heritage.

“The Hunter Advancement Task Force has been established to help stop these senseless attacks made against sportsmen,” explained Pinizzotto. “Using drones to interfere with hunting and fishing is a form of harassment and we will continue working to protect sportsmen across the nation from these threats.”

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