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NIAGARA NEWS BRIEFS

Bisons game will benefit deputy injured in Wilson

A fundraiser to benefit injured Niagara County Sheriff's Deputy Allen Gerhardt, who lost both his legs last month in an on-duty crash, will be held Wednesday at the Buffalo Bisons game at Coca-Cola Field.

The Sheriff's Office and the Bisons will host the event during the 7:05 p.m. game against the Syracuse Chiefs. The team will donate a large portion of all of the tickets sold by the Sheriff's Office to the Gerhardt family, officials said.

Gerhardt, 36, was seriously injured July 18 when his cruiser struck a guardrail on Lake Road in Wilson as he was on his way to assist a fellow officer at a drunken driving stop.

The Gerhardt fundraiser will begin in the right field bleachers at 5:30 p.m. with a pregame party. There will be raffles during the game and silent auctions featuring autographed items from Buffalo sports teams. Gerhardt is scheduled to throw out the first pitch.

Presale tickets are $10 and may be purchased by calling 438-3370. They are also available at the Ontario Shores Credit Union in Newfane and can be purchased from sheriff's officials outside the ballpark on game night.

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Demler loses bid to force write-in Democratic primary

LOCKPORT -- Efforts by former Wheatfield Supervisor Timothy E. Demler and two allies to force a write-in Democratic primary for supervisor and councilman were rejected Thursday by State Supreme Court Justice Richard C. Kloch Sr.

Kloch upheld the Niagara County Board of Elections' Aug. 5 ruling that the "opportunity to ballot" petitions submitted by Demler had too many invalid signatures. They were challenged by GOP Vice Chairman Patti Weiss and town Democratic Chairwoman Shirley Joy.

Kloch said the election commissioners ruled correctly and Demler's lawsuit had to be dismissed because it was filed one day after the statutory deadline to challenge Board of Elections rulings.

Demler, a Republican, is entered in the Sept. 13 GOP primary against incumbent Supervisor Robert B. Cliffe. His allies, Craig M. Schultz and April Stefanski, wanted to try to beat out endorsed Democrats by means of a write-in for two Town Board seats.

Schultz is in the GOP primary against incumbent Councilmen Larry L. Helwig and Gilbert G. Doucet, but Stefanski's petition was disallowed because she is not a registered Republican.

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Participants sought for reading challenge

Read for the Record, the national celebration of reading that tries to set a record for the most people reading the same book on the same day, will take place on Oct. 6, and Read to Succeed Buffalo is looking for participants. This year's selection is Anna Dewdney's children's book, "Llama Llama Red Pajama."

Read to Succeed Buffalo is looking for schools, child care sites, after-school programs, libraries, families and individuals to participate.

Organizers also are looking for "celebrity" readers -- athletes, media personalities, elected officials, entertainers and business executives -- as well as parents, grandparents and community members to help read to children. To be a reader, call Deborah Porter at 843-8895.