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Festival features links to olden days

Homesteads of yesteryear and valued elders become the featured focuses of family fun at Buffalo Audubon's Beaver Meadow Nature Center in Java this weekend.

A "Harvest Festival" on Saturday invites visitors into the world of an olden days homestead that shows a working blacksmith, hearth cooking, soap making and many more hands-on home and outdoors chores as done decades and centuries ago.

During events from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., a variety of craft and candle making gear and guides will be on hand. Three two-hour cheese making workshops throughout the day add another hands-on option. Advanced registration is needed for this one.

As always, the center provides hiking areas to wetlands, fields and forested sites around the grounds.

On Sunday, the regularly scheduled Family Walks will key on third-generation "kids" enjoying a stroll on National Grandparents Day. Kids and parents have the opportunity to accompany grandmoms and granddads on family walks that afternoon to view and bond with the natural settings at Beaver Meadow.

For more details on all events, call (800) 377-1520 or go to buffaloaudubon.com.

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Walleye winners

Dr. Ted Merlleti of Niagara Falls found the cure for small 'eye-catching woes during the Niagara River Anglers Association Annual Walleye Contest Aug. 29. Despite drenching rains that Saturday morning, he weighed in the winner, 11.22 pounds. "Walleye Bob" Hubler of Niagara Falls took second with a 9.2-pound entry.

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Chautauqua water quality

The Chautauqua Health Dept. has given Chautauqua Lake swimmers a caution (advisory) about entering that lake's waters. A severe algae bloom and microcystic toxin-emitting blue-green algae could be at harmful levels for humans.

Further testing has been scheduled. For the holiday weekend, avoid entering water areas that show signs of suspended algae. For more information, call (800) 604-6789.

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Moose meat

South Wales hunter Dick Bielecki will be short on freeze space this deer season. Bielecki drew a permit in a Maine controlled-hunt area. He harvested a 423-pound cow moose on Aug. 25. He saw seven other moose during his two-day hunt.

e-mail: willodrs@gmail.com