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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

>State experts to offer tips on emerald ash borer

RANDOLPH -- The emerald ash borer, which infests and kills North American ash trees, is the subject of a public information meeting sponsored by Cornell University Cooperative Extension at 7 p.m. June 30 in the Randolph Fire Hall, behind the Randolph Municipal Building, 72 Main St.

Experts from Cornell, the state Department of Environmental Conservation and the state Department of Agriculture and Markets will offer information and answer questions about how to reduce the spread of the beetle and minimize its economic impact. It is free and open to the public.

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>Officials offer warning in wake of bear sighting

NEWFANE -- A bear was spotted wandering around Newfane on Saturday morning, Niagara County sheriff's officials said.

Authorities aren't too concerned about the sighting, saying it's typical to see bears in the area this time of year. The bear seen Saturday morning also did not exhibit any aggressive behavior.

But law enforcement officials did warn residents to take some common sense steps, such as putting away bird feeders and grills that might attract a hungry bear.

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>Ticket information, locations listed for Secret Garden Tour

JAMESTOWN -- Tickets are available at 10 area outlets for the Audubon Center and Sanctuary's seventh annual Secret Gardens Tour from 10:30 a.m. to 4 pm. Saturday.

The six featured gardens are: Culpepper Garden, 235 Falconer St.; Johnson Garden, 899 Hunt Road, Lakewood; Memory Gardens, 560 Fairmount Ave., Jamestown; Shepherd Garden, 44 W. Terrace Ave., Lakewood; Smith Garden, 27 Walnut St., Jamestown; and Switala Garden, 244 Martin Road, Jamestown.

Tickets, which cost $10, are available at: Audubon Center and Sanctuary, 1600 Riverside Road, Jamestown; Four Seasons Nursery and Garden Center, 3181 N. Main St. Ext., Jamestown; Krist Hansen Nursery, 31 E. Fairmount Ave., Lakewood; Lake View Gardens, 1250 N. Main St., Jamestown; Peterson Farm, Fluvanna Avenue Extension, Jamestown; Robert's Nursery, 3172 Dry Brook Road, Falconer; Roger Tory Peterson Institute, 311 Curtis St., Jamestown; Secret Gardens Flower Shop, 79 Allen St., Jamestown; Skillman's, 9 Main St., Bemus Point; and Stillwater Garden Market, Foote Avenue Extension, Jamestown.

Tickets also are available at each garden on the day of the tour. Proceeds support nature education programs of the Audubon Center and Sanctuary, 1600 Riverside Road, off Route 62 between Jamestown and Warren.

Call (716) 569-2345 or visit www.jamestownaudubon.org.

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>Work scheduled Tuesday on Oak ramp to Thruway

The Oak Street ramp to the northbound Niagara Thruway in downtown Buffalo will close for several hours Tuesday for maintenance work.

The ramp will be closed from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to enable crews to work on an existing light pole, according to the state Thruway Authority. During that time, detour signs will direct northbound motorists to the Hamburg Street on-ramp, which can be reached via Seneca Street.