7 Dame Edna likes shrimp on the barbie, but she loves skewering her audience. The lavender-haired diva from Down Under has built a career out of harassing anyone brave enough to sit in the first 10 rows of her wacky live shows. She'll regale Western New Yorkers with her sharp-tongued humor when she stars in "Dame Edna: Back With A Vengeance!" at Shea's Performing Arts Center, 646 Main St. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. and runs through Feb. 12, with matinee and evening performances. Tickets are available at Shea's and online at ticketmaster.com, or by calling 852-5000.
9 It's a fixer-upper's fantasy this weekend, as the Western New York Home & Garden Expo takes over - and, no doubt, tastefully appoints - the Agri-Center at the Hamburg Fairgrounds, 5600 McKinley Pkwy. Representatives from every corner of the home improvement industry will be offering tips on ways to rehabilitate and revitalize your digs. Highlights this year include celebrity appearances by "While You Were Out" star Andrew Dan-Jumbo and the Duct Tape Guys, a duo who have parlayed the promotion of that common household product into a seven-part book series. The Expo runs from 4 to 9:30 p.m. Thursday, 2 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $7 and free for children 10 and under. Call 649-3900.
10 Remember that New Year's resolution you made to help others? What about your pledge to spend less time attached to your iPod and more time listening to live music? Kill the proverbial two birds by attending a benefit concert for Kids Escaping Drugs featuring the Cab Calloway Orchestra. The 8 p.m. show, which takes place at Buffalo State College's Rockwell Hall Auditorium, promises to have jitterbuggers from across the generations shouting Calloway's catch phrase, "Hi De Ho!" Although Callo-way is long gone, the orchestra is in good hands: It's led by his grandson, Calloway Brooks. For tickets, call 878-3005.
13 Delirium, defined as a state of violent mental agitation, is a good way to characterize the average Western New Yorker's psyche during the dark days of February. This month, "Delirium" also happens to describe one of the hottest tickets in town - it's the name of Cirque du Soleil's first-ever arena tour. Described as an urban tale that blends state-of-the art music, dance, theater and multimedia, the spectacle come to HSBC Arena for two shows. Boasting a cast of 45 artists, it features a 130-foot stage bisecting HSBC Arena, a projection screen that's as big as four of its IMAX brethren and enough sequins to fill the Niagara River. If you've been to one of Cirque's spectacles, you can expect music to play a more prominent role than it has in the past. In fact, "Delirium," features amped-up versions of 21 "greatest hits" from prior shows, with real lyrics in place of Cirque's invented language. Of course, there will be plenty of the troupe's trademark contortionist acrobatics, which ought to come with a don't-try-this-at-home warning. Show time for both the Monday and Tuesday performance is 8 p.m. To buy tickets, go to the Arena box office or call (888) 223-6000.
17 For the first time ever, Niagara University is including a children's play in its theater season. It's "The Princess and the Pea," the story of a prince, his potential mate and a test of true love that makes all the trials those women endure on "The Bachelor" seem trite. The show begins at 7 p.m. There will also be performances at 2 and 7 p.m. Feb. 18 and 2 p.m. Feb. 19 at the Theatre-at-the-Church, 415 Plain St. in Lewiston. 286-8622.
18 In keeping with First Sunday's guide to chilled thrills, the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy is sponsoring snowshoe treks in the Delaware Park meadow. Snowshoers of all ages and abilities can partake in a snow-crunching excursion around the picturesque park. Don't own your own pair? Rent them there for a nominal fee. Registration is $5 per person, (children under 10 are free). Register 9 a.m. at the Parkside Lodge, then head over to the "Boy and His Dog" statue along Ring Road for the 10 a.m. walk. There's another walk at the same time Feb. 25. 838-1249.
20 There's free Rotary Rink ice skating on Presidents Day, so there's no excuse not to get the kids out of the house to savor a favorite winter pastime. The downtown rink at Main and Chippewa streets will be open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Rent skates for a nominal fee. The rink is open Tuesday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 to 9 p.m., as well as Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. 856-3150.
23 Polar Bites, the Buffalo Zoo's annual winter fund-raiser, is 6 to 9 p.m. in the Hyatt Regency Ballroom at 2 Fountain Plaza. Featuring specialties from area restaurants, the evening includes silent auctions and visits with animal ambassadors. 837-3900, Ext. 131.
24 If you thought the public's fascination with star couples dates back only to People magazine, get this: In 1906, the White House marriage of Theodore Roosevelt's daughter, Alice, and the dashing Ohio congressman Nicholas Longworth was a front page story in most newspapers in the country. To celebrate the centennial of the February nuptials, the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site presents "Vintage Memories: Weddings Past." It's a collection of vintage bridal gowns, floral displays, photographs and other memorabilia. Those who attend the 6:30 p.m. opening gala will be treated to a buffet, open bar, fashion show of vintage bridal ensembles and first peek at the exhibit, only around through Feb. 27. 884-0095.
FIRST SUNDAY struggles mightily with its impresario instincts when compiling its Guide to an Excellent Month. Send your events at least four weeks in advance of our publication date to: First Sunday, c/o The Buffalo News, P.O. 100, Buffalo, NY 14240. Events with the widest or most intriguing appeal will be selected. Information is subject to change.