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Reporter's Notebook / Bits and pieces of news...

OLAF FUB SEZ: According to British author George Orwell, born Eric Arthur Blair on this date in 1903, "On the whole, human beings want to be good, but not too good, and not quite all the time."

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A FAMILY IN NEED -- Julian McCann's battle with leukemia is going well physically, but it needs some financial reinforcement.

Diagnosed last October with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, the 14-year-old Town of Tonawanda resident is rallying after receiving a bone marrow transplant in March from his younger brother. But medical costs have exceeded what his parents' health care coverage will pay.

A benefit will be held from 2 to 6 p.m. Sunday in Delaware Park's Marcy Casino on Hoyt Lake to help offset those costs. Admission is $20 at the door, and the event includes refreshments, auctions and entertainment.

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SHAPE UP -- Personal trainer Derek Alessi, host of 2 Your Health on WGRZ-TV and author of "Bermuda Triangle Diet" and "Lose Fat Forever," has been struck by how there's an epidemic of obesity and an increasing number of people who don't know where their next meal is coming from. His solution? A way to lose weight and fight hunger at the same time.

To start dropping pounds, participants donate $60 to the Food Bank of Western New York through its Web site. In return, they get a six-week e-mail subscription to Alessi's video clips. They include gym and home workouts, motivational exercises, weeklong menus, grocery shopping advice, cooking tips and recipes. Ordinarily, this sort of thing would cost $550 at the Alessi Personal Fitness Center in East Amherst. For info, visit www.foodbankwny.org and click on Diet to End Hunger.

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DINNER BELL -- Knox Presbyterian Church, 2595 Elmwood Ave., Kenmore, holds a community chicken barbecue from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday. Dinners are $8. For info, call 873-2423.

St. Gabriel Catholic Church, 5271 Clinton St., Elma, hosts a chicken barbecue from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday in its air-conditioned Parish Center. For tickets, call 668-5424.

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SUMMER READING -- The Friends of the East Aurora Library is sponsoring a huge used book sale in First Presbyterian Church, Main and Paine streets, across the street from the library. Hours are 9 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. today and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Beginning at noon Saturday, everything except the specials will be half price. For info, call the library at 652-4440.

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HIT THE ROAD -- The Springville Travelers Motorcycle Club, 14340 Route 219, Springville, is sponsoring the Greyt Ride 2010, a motorcycle dice run Saturday to benefit the Greyhound Action League of Buffalo. Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. Cost is $10 per person. The ride begins at 11 and covers a scenic route through the Southern Tier. For info, visit www.greyhoundactionleague.com.

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BARGAIN BIN -- Pet Connection Programs Inc., the special care animal shelter in Marilla, holds its annual Great Groovy Yard Sale from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at 6451 Broadway near Townline Road, Lancaster. For every $5 spent, shoppers get a chance to win a prize valued at $300. For a finale, there's a box sale from 5 to 7 p.m.

Donations of new and gently used items are welcome from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. today at the sale site. No computers will be accepted, though. Pickups are available by calling 652-0192.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY -- Cate Newton, Dominic J. Zanghi, Daniel Stevanoff, Sandy Bohen, Mark Nowicki, Alyssa Aldridge, Juli Drake, Kathy Cieslak, Richard Mitchell, Karen Thuman, Rita Ganim, Florence Ruhl, Diane Kam, Aeriell Bush, Tom Tiberi, Kory Randles, Carol Zuercher, Max Grzywna, Joyce Majeski, Dorie Kaminski, Carole Bieler, Paul Cumming, Susie Gunia, Edward Kuczmarski Jr., Ann Calinski, Enid Washington, Ernest Washington, Timothy Steele Sr., Judy Fredrickson, Jenny Fredrickson, Ceilia Lynn Olejniczak, Jerald Bartkowiak, Margie Fernan, Lindsey Manfredo, Geri Ratchuk, Aritra Bose, Sheila A. DiTullio, Lorna Hill, Autumn Lewandowski, the Rev. David Bialkowski, Vincent Hornberger Jr., Jeff Jurek, Amy D'Auria and Joe Pietrocarlo.

SATURDAY -- Monica Neuwirt, Maryann Colarusso, Louanne Schweitzer, Bill Smith, Matthieu Kokotajlo, Kathie Burns, Elaine Rokitka, Veronica Slowik, Valarie LaVenture, Cayden Collins, Charlie Rusek, Sister Mary Therese Chmura, Patrick Gavigan, Kathy Boinski, Ted May, Matthew Swanekamp, Carolyne O'Sullivan, Sue Keane, Richard Reddy, Patty Wolfsohn, Josie Parlato, Jackie Tricoli, Todd Robertson, May Bertini, Lola Prisaznuk, Ray Specht, Susette Sciandra, Audrey Bartkowiak, Dennis Szefel and Lynn Kerber.

AND SUNDAY -- Elyse NeMoyer, Joan Little, Jim Lickfeld, Lisa Guy, Linda Ranne, Rita Smith, Wende Tuskes, Kim Wales, Judy Rung, Beverly Jane Soby, Jarod Scibran, Sue Kulp Connors, Michael Billoni, Devon Martinez, Mary McDonald, Joe Pohlman, Ginny Barton, Harriet Konovitz, Helen Jones, Doug Smith, Lee Witkowski and Leo Antos.

e-mail: olaffub@buffnews.com

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