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

1. The biggest wheel in Rotary International, President Ray Klinginsmith, is coming today to help the Rotary Club of Buffalo celebrate its 100th anniversary. Klinginsmith, an attorney from Kirksville, Mo., is guest speaker at the club's centennial gala this evening in the Hyatt Regency Buffalo. But first, at 2 p.m., he visits Rotary Park at the foot of Porter Avenue for the unveiling of a sculpture and signs at its entrance. Rotary contributed $500,000 toward construction of the Frank Lloyd Wright Fontana Boathouse for the West Side Rowing Club.

2. Even with the owners' lockout of the players in their current contract dispute, the National Football League will go ahead and stage its 76th annual draft of newly eligible players in Radio City Music Hall (8 p.m., ESPN). The Buffalo Bills, having finished with a miserable 4-12 record last season, get to pick third in tonight's first round. They're positioned even better for the second round Friday night, when they're second in line. Happily, this year's draft has plenty of prospects in positions the Bills need to bolster -- defensive end and outside linebacker.

3. New York City-based Floyd Abrams, considered by many to be the nation's foremost media and constitutional law attorney, is the keynote speaker when the Bar Association of Erie County honors six at its Law Day awards luncheon in the Hyatt Regency Buffalo. Among the honorees are John J. "Jack" O'Connor, for his work as mentor and coordinator of Buffalo City Court's Veterans Treatment Court -- the first of its kind in the nation, and retired Buffalo News reporter Michael Beebe, for his coverage of some of the area's top criminal matters, including the case of Bike Path Killer Altemio Sanchez, the federal prosecutions of the Lackawanna Six and the murder of Dr. Barnett Slepian.

4. "Inspiring Opportunities" is the theme as the civil rights organization Housing Opportunities Made Equal hosts its 48th anniversary celebration this evening in the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center. Star 102.5 FM morning show host Rob Lucas will emcee a program that includes HOME fair-housing success stories and an update on HOME's efforts to save an architecturally significant building at Main and Ferry streets. A cocktail reception at 5 features the Hutch-Tech Jazz Band. Dinner and the program begin at 6. For ticket information, call 854-1400.

5. The "new Middle East" is the topic as Michael Hirsch, chief correspondent for the National Journal, appears in the Jewish Federation of Greater Buffalo's Dosberg Notable Speaker Series this evening. Hirsch, who won an Overseas Press Award when he was at Newsweek for writing about the threat of al-Qaida six months before the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, speaks at 7:30 in Temple Beth Tzedek, 621 Getzville Road, Amherst. Tickets are $10.

6. In honor of the wedding of Britain's Prince William and Kate Middleton on Friday, the Peace Bridge will be lit tonight and Friday night in the colors of the Royal Crest -- royal blue, red and gold. The bridge's royal connections go back to 1927, when two future British kings -- Prince Edward and Prince George, the sons of King George V -- presided over the ceremonial grand opening.

7. The Irish Classical Theatre Company has imported an out-of-towner, Gordon McCall, former artistic director of Montreal's Centaur Theatre, to put the cast through its paces in its production of Conor McPherson's acclaimed 2004 ghost story "Shining City," which opens this evening in the Andrews Theatre, 625 Main St. The play, set in a psychologist's office in Dublin, stars Chris Kelly as the shrink and O'Neill as his recently widowed patient, along with Kelly Meg Brennan and Michael Renna. Like "Wicked" across the street in Shea's Performing Arts Center, it continues through May 22.


Don't miss on

Join a live chat with Bucky Gleason on the Sabres Edge blog at 9:30 a.m. before the Sabres clean out their lockers today. Beginning at 7 p.m. The News' Jay Skurski and Rodney McKissic will be chatting on tonight's NFL draft from One Bills Drive on

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