Thursday, April 24, 2014

PUSH heads to D.C. for protest, conference

            People United For Sustainable Housing (PUSH) will be heading back to Washington, DC this month for a national protest and conference.
            PUSH Buffalo will be joining National People’s Action (NPA), which hosts the national conference every year. The conference runs on April 26-28.
            NPA has been fighting against social and racial injustice on a national level for more than 30 years. PUSH Buffalo has been affiliated with NPA for seven years.
            Round trip transportation will be provided via two, 50-passenger buses to and from Washington.  The cost of the trip is $45 for members and $50 for non-members. For reservations call (716)-884-0356.
            “We would love nothing more to bring more people to NPA,” said Jennifer Mecozzi-Rivera, organizing director of PUSH Buffalo.
            The goal of the conference is to prevent banks from giving out predatory loans. There are also other workshops that will focus on youth activism. 
            “I am hoping there is more impact on youth,” said Mecozzi-Rivera.
            Every year PUSH and NPA target different legislators and lobbyists to protest against while in Washington. Last year 800 protesters picketed the home of Edward DeMarco, who was the former director of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. By Shatai Melvin and Elisabeth Tate

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Pet Clinic to make inroads to West Side

West Side Pet Clinic, a new provider of veterinary services, is trying its best to make things personal.
Over the next couple of weeks, staff members will go door-to-door and give brochures out to the community’s pet owners. The clinic will also hold an open house for community leaders.
The clinic at 1245 Niagara St. opened April 1 and has been seeing two to three patients per day. It expects a slow ramp-up over the next few weeks, said veterinarian Dr. Susan R. Sickels.
“Right now it’s just been more information dispensing than anything else,” she said.
West Side Pet Clinic shares a building with Pawprints, a dog groomer and daycare, and provides preventative care, physical examinations and treatment for simple health problems. Most services range from $10 to $39, with an all-inclusive puppy or kitten visit for $99.
The clinic keeps costs down by utilizing gently used equipment, including kennels and tables. It does not have radiology or surgery on the premises.
There are three vets and an office manager on staff at the clinic. Sickels’ partner, Dr. Reed Stevens, also owns Ellicott Small Animal Hospital downtown, so owners and their pets will be referred to that hospital for emergencies.
Sickels and Stevens chose the West Side as a means of putting their faith into action.
“We knew this was a place in need,” Sickels said. “If we are the first to vaccinate your pet, that’s great.”  
Eventually, the clinic may expand to include small laceration repairs, oxygen and anesthesia machines, but for now it is focused on settling into the neighborhood. By Angelica Rodriguez and Brandon Waz


Proud publishers

Self-published authors and small print publishers at the Buffalo Small Press Book Fair speak to the changes in the publishing industry that have allowed authors to bypass major publishing houses in order to get their work out to the world. The Buffalo Small Press Book Fair is an annual event held on Porter Avenue in the Karpeles Manuscript Library Museum that brings together local writers, artists and booksellers. The event, which started eight years ago, recently expanded to two days, and might require a new venue as attendance continues to rise. By Jeff Pawlak and Brittney Singletary

IN DEPTH: D'Youville renovating new science building

Changes to the Letchworth Mansion and surrounding buildings are underway to create an up-to-date science building for students at D'Youville College.  Full story by Peter Murphy and Bill Schutt

Helping hands

Alaa Aljibouri and her older sister Lamiaa volunteer for West Side Ministries to renovate a house located on 139 Potomac Ave. that the organization is renting out. This was their first day volunteering with West Side Ministries, which frequently accepts the helping hands of local students. By Shatai Melvin and Elisabeth Tate

Farmers market moves across the street

The Elmwood-Bidwell Farmers Market will have a new location and new look this spring.
Due to ground maintenance on the west side of Bidwell Parkway, the market will move directly across Elmwood Avenue. The relocation will be effective for the first two to three months of the market’s season.
“We had to do it a couple of years ago because we just had so much rain,” marketing director for Elmwood-Bidwell Farmers Market, Joe Kirchmyer said. “Our side of Elmwood turned into a mud pit, so to give the ground and the grass time to recover, we moved to the other side for a month. It’s a little bit smaller, but it still works.”  
The market will begin on May 10 and will run from 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. every Saturday, rain or shine until Nov. 29.
Joe Kirchmyer and Karl Frizlen look over poster contest entries
A poster contest will be held which will require participants to draw posters that promote the farmers market. This will be the market’s fourth annual poster competition.
Although the market season has yet to begin, residents can still enjoy locally grown and produced foods at Horsefeathers Market & Residences located at 346 Connecticut St. During the winter season, Elmwood-Bidwell and Horsefeathers work together to bring fresh products through a variety of suppliers.
“On Saturday mornings, during the winter, we invite approximately 18 farmers,” treasurer of Elmwood-Bidwell Farmers Market, Karl Frizlen said. “They sell their products inside the market, together with four permanent ones.”
The Horsefeathers marketplace occupies the basement level and first floor and runs from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. every Saturday morning. By Jamie Hall, Kamesha Jones and Jazmina Rivera

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Finally getting out

Patrick and Debrah Cappola, above, walk along Elmwood Avenue for the first time this season as grandson Jaedyn swings into spring. Left, Michael Michno, cleans up the grounds at the Unitarian Universalist church on Elmwood Avenue and West Ferry Street. Michno said he was relieved to finally have a day that he could work outside. By Shana Campbell and Andrew Manzella