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BEST BETS

1. Boot me up, Scotty!

Still trying to figure out what right-click and left-click mean? Want ideas on where to put that new office or den? Do both this weekend at the Erie County Fair and Expo center in Hamburg.

Saturday, at the Ag-Grange building, the MarketPro Computer Show kicks off at 9:30 a.m. with row upon row of supplies, equipment, demonstrations and more - all at discounted prices! Admission is $7 for adults. Internet whizzes under 12 get in free.

Then, also on Saturday, at 11 a.m. at the International Agri-Center building, the 11th annual Western New York Home Show begins, featuring a completely landscaped model home complete with inground pool and hundreds of products and services guaranteed to make the family drool.

Admission is $5 for adults, children under 12 get in free. (The home show runs through Friday, Feb. 23.)

For more information, call 649-3900, ext. 404.

2. Muskrats and mongoose and cobras - oh, my!

The much-loved children's story "The Garden of Rikki Tikki Tavi," by Rudyard Kipling, comes to vivid life this Saturday at the Lancaster Opera House.

Produced by the Rochester Children's Theatre, the story features a ragtag band of animals who must defeat Nag, the evil cobra who reigns over the garden in which they all live.

Performances are at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. and tickets are only $6. Want to spend a few hours in the garden of good and evil? Call the Lancaster Opera House at 683-1776 for details.

3. Wanna get all sappy? You still can, even though Valentine's Day is over.

Check out the maple sugar-making workshop at the Genessee Community College, through its Continuing Education program. Families can learn how to harvest sap from their own maple trees, find out how Native Americans discovered it and how pioneers learned to make syrup.

The workshop, at the Beaver Meadow Nature Center at 1610 Welch Road, North Java, runs from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday; for directions and to register ahead of time, call 492-5265. Outdoor-wear is suggested, and the cost is $9 per person.

Sweet!

4. Ice, ice baby.

Who prays for cold weather around here? Besides snow-plow contractors, we mean.

Try the Chautauqua County village of Mayville, which harvests ice - yes, ice - every year for its annual Ice Castle Extravaganza.

In recent years, up to 220 tons of ice blocks have been cut and shaped to build castles well over 100 feet long - and when they throw those colored spotlight on them, well, you have to see the sparkle to believe it.

Snowmobile rides, horse-drawn sleighs, a parade and snow slide for the kids complete the fest - admission is free! Call the Mayville Chamber of Commerce at 753-3113 for information.

5. If your kids love to walk around the house going "Brusha-brusha-brush-a!" like the girl in "Grease!," they'll lovvvvve this activity.

Saturday at the Boulevard Mall, the Eighth District Dental Society holds a day of entertainment, education and activities for children who want to get and keep healthy teeth.

Dentists, hygienists and dental students will be on site from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer your questions while the kids play with mascots, magicians and more.

Admission is free - and you might even score a new toothbrush!

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