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BEST BETS

1. Not in My Backyard.

That's the title of a program on earthquakes in Western New York. Presented by Andrea S. Dargush of the Center for Earthquake Engineering Research at the University at Buffalo, it willexplore the potential for a local earthquake and what kind of damage could be expected.

It takes place at 7 p.m. Friday in the Kenilworth Branch Library, 318 Montrose Ave., Tonawanda. Anyone interested in attending is asked to call the library at 834-7657 to register, because seating is limited.

2. All together now.

Some of the area's best-known church choirs and musical directors will come together in a choral extravaganza at 8 p.m. Friday in Slee Concert Hall at the University at Buffalo North Campus.

The concert begins with the St. Paul's Cathedral Girls Choir, led by Dale Adelmann, singing "Psalm 150," a spirited piece. It follows with performances by the Westminster Presbyterian Church Choir under Thomas Swan and the Choir of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church under James Bigham singing "Alleluya, a New Work Is Come on Hand," "Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day," "The Canticle of Brother Sun" and "Ain't Got Time to Die." The program will end with the choirs joining for "Te Deum."

Tickets are $5. They are available at the box office and through Ticketmaster (852-5000).

3. Miles of tracks.

The Great American Train Show and Model Railroading, America's largest touring model train show, will be in town this weekend. More than 10,000 model railroads and trains will be on display from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Buffalo Convention Center.

There will be 200 tables of toy trains in 25 sizes and six operating model layouts, including one that visitors can try with four trains and dozens of accessories. Also included are state-of-the-art model trains and old Lionel and American Flyer trains.

Admission is $6 adults; children under 12 are admitted free when with an adult.

4. Getting out.

Letchworth State Park has some outdoor activities planned this weekend.

On Saturday at 10 a.m. there is an Adventure Nature Ski Hike for the hardy. It covers five miles and lasts at least four hours. Meet at Bear Hollow (No. 16) Trailhead on River Road. At 2:30 p.m. there is a Novice Nature Ski Hike, beginning at the Trailside Lodge. At 6 p.m., there's a Moonlight Nature Ski Hike (bring a flashlight) that also begins at Trailside.

Then, on Sunday, there are three more hikes and walks.

Call the park's interpretive office at 493-3625 for particulars and directions.

5. Journey to Japan ... via East Aurora.

Children can learn about Bunrako, an ancient form of Japanese puppet theater, at Explore & More, a children's museum. Participants will color and cut small paper versions of the traditional puppets and construct their own puppet show. The event goes on all day, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday.

Then they are welcome to try on kimonos and Samurai outfits, to work an abacus, to see a traditional child's bedroom and to practice writing in Japanese.

The museum is at 430 Main St., East Aurora. Admission is $3 for children from 1 to 12; $2 for adults. Call 655-5131.

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