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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

WNY Earth Day Family Expo to serve up eco-friendly tips

The Western New York Earth Day Family Expo will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Buffalo Zoo.

About a dozen environmental groups, along with other organizations, will be on hand to share information on living in a more eco-friendly way. The Niagara Frontier Reading Council will also be distributing free childrens' books to promote literacy.

For more information, call the zoo at 837-3900, or go to www.wnyearthday.org.

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Smudge Fundaes to offer daily shows at fairgrounds

DUNKIRK -- Music, wiggles and giggles will greet visitors to the upcoming Chautauqua County Fair.

Lake Shore Savings Bank, Dunkirk, is sponsoring the debut performance of the Smudge Fundaes, a Canadian entertainment duo that has won awards for its musical entertainment for children.

The Smudge Fundaes will appear at the Arthur R. Maytum Family Theater several times each day during the 129th edition of the fair, which runs July 26 to Aug. 1 at the Dunkirk fairgrounds.

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Point Abino lighthouse among 976 declared surplus

The government of Canada last week declared 976 lighthouses to be surplus property, to the dismay of lighthouse preservation groups in Canadian provinces.

Canada's Department of Fisheries and Oceans is hoping to replace many with less costly steel-pole aids to navigation, and at least some of the older towers may become "heritage" structures. Included among the 488 surplus inactive lights is the Point Abino lighthouse, visible from Buffalo.

Among 488 active lights that are now surplus are Canada's Niagara River front and rear range lights at Niagara-on-the-Lake, and harbor, range or breakwater lights in St. Catharines, Port Colborne and Port Dalhousie.

Interested parties have two years to petition Parks Canada for heritage designation for the lights. The petitions must be accompanied by a written statement from someone willing to assume ownership.

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Penn Dixie outdoor facility to launch summer schedule

The Penn Dixie Paleontological and Outdoor Education Center in Hamburg will start its summer schedule this weekend.

The center will be open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays, and closed July 4 and Labor Day.

Visitors will be introduced to the remains of the ancient creatures that once roamed the oceans that covered Western New York 380 million years ago. Visitors can collect and keep the fossils they find. Penn Dixie has an inexhaustible supply of fossils that preserve the remains of animals that once roamed a warm tropical sea when this area was 20-30 degrees south of the equator.

Visit the center's Web site at www.penndixie.org for directions and additional information.

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