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Seven By Seven / Seven things you need to know by 7 a.m.

1. They're going to try again today to do that work on the light pole on the Oak Street ramp to the northbound Niagara Thruway in downtown Buffalo. The ramp, which curls around the outfield of Coca-Cola Field, is scheduled to be shut down from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., weather permitting. At the same time, the northbound I-190 will be reduced by one lane. If you try to use the ramp during these hours, you'll be shunted over to the Hamburg Street entrance. If you think about it soon enough, you probably can save time by crossing downtown on North Division and Church streets and catching the northbound Niagara Thruway near Adam's Mark Hotel.

2. Two more free summer concert series get off to rousing starts today. Buffalo's gypsy jazz masters Babik open "Rock the Casbah: College of Arts and Sciences Summer Concert Series" from 12:05 to 1:05 p.m. outside the University at Buffalo Student Union on the North Campus in Amherst. In case of rain, they move into the Capen Hall lobby. Then, at 7 p.m., the 13th annual Elmwood Village Summer Concert Series on Bidwell Parkway at Elmwood Avenue kicks off with our homegrown Cajun party band, LeeRon Zydeco & the Hot Tamales.

3. Like strawberries and ice cream, the folk-rock group America and Artpark's free Tuesday in the Park Series go together perfectly. Tonight's show in the amphitheater in Lewiston is their fifth appearance there in five years and for good reason: There's hardly a more pleasant way to spend a summer night. Led by harmonizers Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell, the group is in the middle of its 40th anniversary tour and their mellow hits from the '70s -- "Ventura Highway," "Tin Man," "Horse With No Name" -- never seem to grow old. Before they take the stage, there's a special Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station opening ceremony at 6:15 p.m. that includes a flyover.

4. The Bisons are back in Coca-Cola Field for a homestand that's as brief -- just five games -- as it will be eventful on this week leading up to Fourth of July weekend. Tonight's contest with the Syracuse Chiefs (7:05 p.m., 1520 AM), features the first of the team's four ethnic festivals this season -- Irish Night. There's a pre-game party with Irish food and music in the pavilion area and, after the final out, fireworks!

5. The monks of Drepung Loseling Monastery, once one of Tibet's largest Buddhist monasteries and now rebuilt in India, come to Unity Church of Buffalo, 1243 Delaware Ave., for a puja ceremony for healing at 7 p.m. this evening, during which they will pass along a mantra to enhance personal healing power. Tickets are $20, but none are left. There is a waiting list, though. Call 882-0391 and leave your name and a call-back number.

6. DVDs showing for sale and rent in stores today include the goofy Greek god adventure, "Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief"; the even goofier "Hot Tub Time Machine," with John Cusack and Rob Corddry; the remake of George Romero's horror film, "The Crazies"; and the documentary film about the Canadian rock band Rush, "Beyond the Lighted Stage." And let's not overlook the boxed set of "Leave It to Beaver: The Complete Series" -- all 234 episodes for a list price of $199.99.

Meanwhile, over in the music bins, new CDs arrive today from Alejandro Escovedo ("Sweet Songs of Love"); Judy Collins ("Paradise"); a live Indigo Girls disc; and Scissors Sisters ("Night Work").

7. If you've been despairing that there's hardly anything new on television these summer nights, here's some good news. Tonight "Rescue Me," the edgy, funny and often raunchy drama about New York City firefighters, returns for its sixth season. The show, starring Denis Leary, airs at 10 p.m. on FX.

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