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

1. The U.S. Census will be out with the first national and state totals from its 2010 effort today. While there will be no city or county numbers, it's a big deal for New Yorkers because it will reveal how many people the state has lost over the past 10 years, which is critical to how many congressmen the state has in Washington. The betting is that New York will lose two representatives, something that will have a major impact on how the redistricting map is drawn in Western New York.

2. If you have Christmas packages to mail, you've waited long enough, and it's time to get out the scotch tape and brown paper. Today is the Post Office's deadline for Priority Mail to make it before Christmas. And for true procrastinators, the Express Mail deadline is Wednesday.

3. Bishop Bernard J. McLaughlin, auxiliary bishop emeritus of the Diocese of Buffalo, will celebrate the 75th anniversary of his ordination today. At 98, he is the oldest diocesan priest living in the Diocese of Buffalo. He was ordained to the priesthood Dec. 21, 1935, at St. John Lateran Basilica in Rome. McLaughlin also has the distinction of being the only priest from the Diocese of Buffalo to be ordained a bishop by a pope. On Jan. 6, 1969, he was ordained to the episcopacy by Pope Paul VI. To mark the anniversary, Bishop Edward U. Kmiec will visit McLaughlin at his Tonawanda residence.

4. National Homeless Persons Remembrance Day will be marked at a 3:30 p.m. ceremony at the Garden of Hope, 385 Paderewski Drive. The event, which will remember those who have died and suffered this year because of homelessness, is being organized by the Western New York Coalition for the Homeless and the Homeless Alliance of Western New York.

5. Also showing concern for the needy today is the Buffalo City Mission, which will serve its annual Christmas Community Meal beginning at noon in the mission, 100 E. Tupper St. Each person who attends will get not only a warm meal but a new pair of either socks, gloves, mittens or a hat, courtesy of Anthony Baldi & Associates, a financial advisory firm.

6. A veto override is a pretty rare thing in Buffalo City Hall. The Common Council will test its muscle at 1:30 p.m. today at a special meeting to try to overturn Mayor Byron W. Brown's veto of $450,000 in capital funding for the Nevilly Court project, which would bring new athletic fields to a planned recreation and education complex in South Buffalo.

7. Gamblers who might need a cup of joe or some ice cream will be happy to know that Seneca Gaming Corp. will be marking the opening of a co-branded Tim Hortons and Cold Stone Creamery restaurant at Seneca Niagara Casino & Hotel in Niagara Falls. The restaurant is the first fast-food chain to open at any of the Seneca casinos. Officials will gather at 10:30 a.m. for, appropriately enough, a coffee toast.


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