Highs and lows: Some of the best, worst of the week

Here are some of the best – and worst – of the week:

BEST

TOASTING AREA WINES – This weekend, America’s Grape Country will be featuring wines from the area as well as some from outside our region. In the last 10 years, the wine industry has become a major player in our economy – and still growing. The festival, which is today and Sunday and includes an appearance from country music band Emerson Drive, is worth celebrating.

WATER DISTRICT – Even without the support of cantankerous Fredonia, the Chadwick Bay Regional Development Corp. is moving ahead with its grant application for a $38 million water district. Dunkirk, which had been slow to offer its support, finally got on board last week. Economies thrive in regions where layers of government are not suffocating its taxpayers like those here in Chautauqua County. All regional efforts to work together as one are a step in the right direction.

NIGHT OUT MILESTONE – It has been 20 years for the city of Dunkirk in celebrating National Night Out. Last Tuesday, hundreds of residents took time to meet city police and firefighters. On top of that, music, frisbees, flashing buttons and balloons were given to the children with an appearance from McGruff the Crime Dog. “I’m happy. It’s a great turnout,” said city Police Chief David Ortolano. “Couldn’t have asked for more perfect weather.”

WORST

NO NIGHT – It is time for the Fredonia Police Department chief to update his Web site page. In his “message from the chief” item, Brad Meyers states, “The department is involved in many community-oriented activities” including “National Night Out.” Well that is not true. Last year, Meyers – without any consultation with village leaders – took it upon himself to cancel the event because he said his department could not afford the $500 it costs. In reality, it was canceled as part of the chief’s protest for his department not receiving a new vehicle and a position being eliminated. This year, the department had its vehicles approved, but National Night Out was missing again. So much for the community involvement aspect.