The Lake effect snow returned to the Jamestown-area overnight... and, has ushered in the coldest air of the Winter Season so far. Forecaster Tony Ansuini with the National Weather Service in Buffalo says the snow moved southward late last night as an arctic front passeed across the region. Ansuini says some areas may wind up with about a foot of snow. But... the coldest air of the season has moved in... and, he says it'll be a reminder of last year's record breaking February. A Wind Chill Warning will run until 10 AM Sunday for all of Western New York.
Despite the frigid temperatures forecast for today... all activities planned for the annual President's Day Weekend Winter Festival are still on in Mayville. However... the timing on a few events may be adjusted due to the sub-zero temperatures and wind chills predicted during the day. That from the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce's Craig Colburn... who is lending a hand to the Mayville/Chautauqua Chamber... which which is again putting on the event. Colburn says activities Saturday run from 10 AM to 10 PM... and, one of the big events will be snowmobile rides. One thing that has changed already is that all parking will be free this year. Colburn says there is concern over having volunteers out being out in the bitter cold conditions... and, there is no ice castle this year due to a lack of ice. He says the bon-fire is still on for 6:30 tonight... and, the fireworks begin at 8 PM. The Winter Festival runs from 10 AM to 4 PM Sunday.
People are still talking about Governor Andrew Cuomo's visit to the city of Dunkirk on Thursday and his proposed 200-million dollar investment by the state into the proposed Athenex facility to be built in the town of Dunkirk. Cuomo says the facility will produce 900 jobs. There would also be another 500 at the company headquarters in Buffalo. Thursday's announcement brought Congressman Tom Reed, who traveled to the city from the nation's capitol. There are still a lot of questions about the project, including who will have an opportunity to land one of those 900 jobs. Mayor Willie Rosas says he's talked with company officials... who say they're ready to train local residents looking for jobs. Governor Cuomo indicated that state lawmakers including Senator Cathy Young and Assemblyman Andy Goodell will be playing an important role. Goodell says he's confident that the 200-million dollar investment will make it into the final budget... with the help of Young, who chairs the Senate's Finance Committee. Athenex officials hope to break ground in April.
County fire investigators are still looking for the cause of a house fire in the town of Portland that occured late Thursday. Officials say the blaze at 63-43 Ellicott Road was first reported about 4 PM... and, it destroyed the structure. Portland fire crews had help from Brocton, West and East Dunkirk, the city of Dunkirk, Fredonia, Mayville and Stockton departments. There were no injuries. The Red Cross is helping the six adults and one child who lived there.
With a temporary court injunction lifted... Chautauqua Institution can resume preperatory work on the 41.5-million dollar Amphitheater project. Chautauqua's Vice-President of Marketing George Murphy says they lost about two weeks of time due to the lawsuit. However... Murphy says they should make up that time with little trouble. They will lose about 75-thousand dollars because nothing regarding the project could be touched while a Temporary Court Injunction was in place. Murphy expects work to begin again early next week. Murphy says there will be a slight cost "overrun" on the project... but, even without working weekends... crews will get caught up. He says one of the major items to be taken care of first will be the removal of asbestos, and lead from the back "house area" of the Amp. He says they already have the permits for that. The project is to be completed in time for the 2017 season.