Joseph Popiolkowski - The Buffalo News

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Joseph Popiolkowski

Joseph Popiolkowski is a reporter for The Buffalo News covering Buffalo's inner suburbs, including the towns of Tonawanda, Cheektowaga and West Seneca.


Obituaries

July 30, 1947 - Nov. 25, 2017 Michael Mackes liked mentoring teenagers who were adrift in high school. The Army major reached youth through the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps he created at South Park High School and the Scout program he founded in the Erie County Sheriff's Office. The lasting impact he had on their lives was evident up to Saturday, when he …

Local News

Daemen College's roots can be traced back to one building. The Rosary Hall mansion on the private college's Main Street campus in Amherst was purchased in 1948 by the Sisters of St. Francis and became the Rosary Hill College for women, now Daemen. "Everything went on there," said Michael Brogan, Daemen's vice president for academic affairs and dean of the college. "T…

Looking for a way to walk off that Thanksgiving meal? All state parks will be free to enter on Friday, to encourage New Yorkers to take advantage of "the unparalleled natural beauty right in their backyards," Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said in a news release. Most state parks do not charge an entry fee this time of year. But the standard vehicle entry fee will be waived Fr…

Amherst

The 30,000 motorists who travel daily on Maple Road in Amherst should notice a much smoother ride along a previously bumpy one-mile stretch. Work to repave Maple between North Forest and Hopkins roads is finished after five weeks of obstructed traffic, said Charlie Sickler, Erie County's deputy commissioner of highways. Only simple manhole adjustments are left to do nex…

Plans for an apartment complex on North French Road in Amherst can move forward now that a judge has ruled in a case that pitted two government boards against each other. The Amherst Town Board in March rejected a request to rezone 4400 N. French Road, mainly due to concerns that the location is within the town’s flood plain. The Green Organization had planned to constr…

Registration is open for the Amherst Skating Club's 10-week "Learn to Skate" program. Sessions begin Jan. 9 at the Northtown Center, 1615 Amherst Manor Drive, with classes geared toward ages three and older, regardless of level of experience. Professional coaches work with students to learn basic skating skills, refine skills they already have or learn more advanced ski…

Local News

Lancaster police have identified the motorist killed Nov. 15 in a head-on collision as Julie Rybarczyk-Smith, 55, a town resident. Rybarczyk-Smith was driving east on Broadway near Woodlawn Avenue just after 9:30 p.m. when a pickup heading west driven by Ryan T. McGuire, 23, of Buffalo, crossed over into oncoming traffic, Detective Capt. William J. Karn Jr. said. Ryb…

A decision on whether to allow a proposed Delta Sonic that would replace Menne Nursery on Niagara Falls Boulevard was delayed until next month. The Amherst Town Board agreed to hold off on making a decision on a zoning change until its Dec. 11 meeting. The Planning Board last month voted, 5-1, to recommend rezoning the 10-acre property between Niagara Falls Boulevard…

Amherst

For the first time in two years, the Amherst Town Board on Monday held an up-or-down vote on a key element of the massive Westwood mixed-use project: a statement detailing the development's likely environmental effects. The Town Board voted to accept the report, known as a final generic environmental impact statement, which was prepared by a consultant hired by the town…

Amherst

Tom the turkey likes to play chicken with traffic. The plucky bird is a common sight at the intersection of Klein and Paradise roads in East Amherst, where he often blocks lanes, pecks at tires and circles cars. While a neighborhood fixture and quirky oddity, his bold behavior has also garnered Tom a reputation as a nuisance. "He'll just walk up right in front of …

A child safety seat inspection will be held Saturday in Amherst at the Delta Sonic on Niagara Falls Boulevard and Maple Road. Child safety seat inspectors from the Erie County Sheriff's Office will provide free checks from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Each inspection includes a free car wash, along with free photos with Santa, face painting and giveaways.

Amherst

Learn about “a day in the life of a police officer” during the Amherst Police Department's 2018 Citizen Police Academy. The program begins Feb. 6 and continues for 14 consecutive weeks through May 8. Classes are from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Tuesdays at police headquarters, 500 John James Audubon Parkway. Topics include a tour of headquarters, recruitment and training …

Amherst

Use of the Amherst town seal in campaign material could be prevented if a proposed law is passed. The issue came up in the days before Election Day when a letter carrying the town seal went out from Supervisor Barry A. Weinstein in which he endorsed Guy R. Marlette, a candidate for the Erie County Legislature's 5th district. Now, the restriction is among a series of …

Buffalo

Feisty. That's how Traci Lynn Martin described Lake Erie in November as she tries to circumnavigate all five Great Lakes and hopefully break a world record in the process. Since March, the nurse from Kansas City, Mo., has paddled thousands of miles on her surf ski, a variation of a kayak, around lakes Huron, Superior and Michigan. Then she met Erie. "People have b…