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Reporters' Notebook / Bits and pieces of news...

OLAF FUB SEZ: According to American author Henry Miller, born on this date in 1891, "If we have not found heaven within, it is a certainty we will not find it without."

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The Babe in Bethlehem

One silent night in Bethlehem

A special babe was born

To offer peace and power divine

To those who were forlorn.

Shepherds were tending their own sheep,

Amazed, they gaze above;

Bright stars, their graceful guidance

As they watched their sheep with love.

It seems a star had led them

To the baby in a manger;

This was a precious child but

To the world he was a stranger.

In gratitude, they brought a lamb,

A gift to this blest child;

In thankfulness, they bowed their heads

To Jesus, sweet and mild.

As Mary held her precious child

And nourished him with love,

The Baby Jesus warmly smiled

As bright stars shone above.

The stars in all their glory beamed

To earth that silent night

And showed the world the peace of God

In sparkling glorious light.

-- Doris V. Neumann

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EARLY START -- Now that Christmas is over, the folks at YMCA Buffalo Niagara are thinking of summer. They've scheduled Early Bird Summer Day Camp Registration to start next Monday and continue through Feb. 29. Fee is $10 per week per camper.

Parents can choose from among the traditional day camp or one of the specialty camps -- Gymnastics Camp, Mountain Biking Camp, Theater Camp or Sports Camp for kids ages 3 to 15. Free extended hours in the morning and afternoon also are available.

Financial assistance is available for those who qualify.

For info, visit the nearest YMCA family branch or go to www.ymcabuffaloniagara.org.

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BEST ANGELS -- The Akron-Newstead Rotary Club's annual holiday auction earlier this month raised $15,000 for local families in need, event coordinator Sarah Kempisty reports. It is expected that 43 families and 139 children will benefit from the funds.

Additional donations may be made by check, payable to Akron-Newstead Rotary Club. Donations may be sent to the club at P.O. Box 300, Akron, NY 14001.

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GOTTA DANCE -- Dancer Tony Bellissimo, who grew up in Hamburg, is home for the holidays after a year that saw him perform with pop star Rhianna on her Loud Tour 2011, appear in the movie "Step Up 4" and take a featured role in the post-Super Bowl episode of the TV series "Glee." But he's not sitting still. He's hosting a holiday hip-hop workshop to benefit local children with special needs.

It will be held from 11 a.m. to noon Tuesday in the studio of Future Dance Center, 5110 Camp Road, Hamburg. Donation is $10 cash, and all proceeds will go directly to the Bornhava Preschool for special-needs children in Amherst.

For info, email webhd@roadrunner.com.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY -- Kristina Rae Nelson Smith, Sally Travis Barticciotto, Janice A. Morrow-Hall, Jody Benard Carter III, Michael Healey, Jessica Wheaton, Dr. Russell Carlson, Alice Perrelli, Kathryn M. Dickson, Helen Kuszniaj, Richard Felger, Lyndy Rose Czora, Karen Peffer, Ziggy Kucewicz Sr., Carol Ann Falzone, Carol Blake, Tammy Roberts, Dave Crawford, Gail Genco, Carolyn Jessee, Carole Ignaszak.

email: olaffub@buffnews.com