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BEST BETS

1. Tradition at Theodore's.

The Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site is holding its second annual Children's Victorian Yuletide Program with activities between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Monday.

Children will hear a brief history of Victorian holiday customs and how they've been transformed into modern traditions. Then they will make ornaments from nuts, popcorn, lace, ribbon and paper, materials available during that period. And each child will make a cornucopia to take home.

The program is geared for children between ages 5 and 12. Cookies and cocoa will be served and Santa Bear will visit.

The cost is $6 for members, $8 for non-members. There is no charge for parents who wish to observe or to help younger children. Reservations are required. Call 884-0095. The site is at 641 Delaware Ave.

2. Here's a way to combine goodwill and good fun.

The Make-A-Wish Foundation of Western New York will hold a carnival at the Buffalo Convention Center from noon to 7 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

Children and their parents will be able to ride 12 rides, including an octopus, a Ferris wheel, a giant slide and a merry-go-round.

Young Audiences will sponsor entertainment that features the Hill Brothers, a singing trio; the McClure Artist Guild, a steel drum band; theatreFiguren, a puppet show, and Los Caribes, a musical group. Also, there will be large inflatable items for children to play on and sumo wrestling. (For some of these, there's an extra charge.)

Make-A-Wish Foundation was founded in Buffalo in 1992. It has granted more than 200 wishes, with 34 pending. Admission price is $6 for children; $2 for adults; free for children under 2.

3. Celebrate winter with the Wondermakers and the Amherst Museum.

At 1 p.m. Tuesday, the Wondermakers, a theater group, will lead children in song and stories about winter and snow. Then, between 2 and 3, museum staff members will guide children in making yarn dolls and paper snowflakes with the help of their adult chaperone. At 4, the Wondermakers will repeat their performance.

Participants may join the event, which is geared for children in pre-K through fifth grade, at any time, but a parent or guardian must accompany children at all times.

Cost is $2 for adults, $1 for children. The museum is at 3755 Tonawanda Creek Road, Amherst.

4. Dancers take us around the world.

The Vanaver Caravan from Rosendale is a dynamic troupe of 17 dancers that presents a tour of cultures. This multicultural production, which will be held at the Lancaster Opera House, is said to be full of energy and joy. Included in the repertoire are portrayals of Solstice, Kwanzaa, Devali (East Indian), Hanukkah, the Swedish celebration of Lucia as well as Spanish, Russian, Irish, German and English dances. Dancers wear costumes representative of each culture and musicians are part of the act.

The performance is at 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Ticket prices are $10 for adults; $8 for seniors and students; $6 for children. The Opera House is at 21 Central Ave., Lancaster. Call 683-1776.

5. Still looking for lights?

The Sonnenberg Gardens of Canandaigua presents its "Festival Lights: Winter Wonderland of Creatures Great & Small" from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. through Jan. 4.

Here, you can stroll through the illuminated 50-acre estate, built at the turn of the century by Frederick Ferris Thompson, a wealthy banker. Lights surround the exterior of buildings and there are illuminated displays that look like a T-Rex and her baby, a giant teddy bear, Noah and his ark.

Besides the lights, visitors may visit the restored Victorian mansion, the conservatory complex, a gift shop and take a horse-drawn sleigh ride, weather permitting ($1 additional).

Admission is $6 for adults; $3 for children; optional museum admission is an additional $2 for adults; $1 for children. The Gardens are located at 151 Charlotte St., Canandaigua. Call 394-4922 for directions.

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