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

OLAF FUB SEZ: A favorite lyric from the late great blues singer Etta James, born Jamesetta Hawkins on this date in 1938, "Tell Mama what you want/ And I'll make everything all right."

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TASTE TEST -- Chefs from nearly a dozen area restaurants will rustle up delicacies for a Best Bite Competition in The Iron Event 2, which will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. Sunday in Banchetti by Rizzo's, 550 North French Road, Amherst.

Joining Banchetti by Rizzo's in the competition are Bistro Europa, Atmosphere 62, Sea Bar, Curly's, Oliver's, Ristorante Lombardo, Siena and Torches. There also will be auctions featuring a guitar autographed by the Rolling Stones and a boxing glove signed by Muhammad Ali.

Tickets are $25 advance, $30 at the door. For tickets and info, visit Proceeds benefit the ALS Division of the Muscular Dystrophy Association, which supports research and assistance to people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease.

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OLDER AND WISER -- Want to make a positive change in a young person's life? The Erie County Department of Senior Services RSVP program is looking for volunteers age 55 and over to provide individual tutoring for children in the classrooms at Southside Elementary School in South Buffalo.

One Southside teacher who has an RSVP volunteer remarks, "He works wonderfully with my struggling students, one on one. I wish I could have five or six more of him."

For info or to volunteer, call RSVP at 858-7548.

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THE GREAT OUTDOORS -- More than three dozen exhibitors, offering information and equipment for camping, hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities, will be featured in the third annual Greater Olean Area Outdoor & Rec Sports Show this weekend in the Daniel Carter Events Center, 2383 W. Five Mile Road Extension, Allegany, off Exit 24 on the I-86 Expressway.

Roger Raglin, host of the popular TV show "Roger Raglin Outdoors" on the Outdoor Channel, will appear both days. Admission is $3 adults, $2 seniors and students. Children 12 and under are free with an adult. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. For info, call 372-4433 or visit

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BASE HIT -- Hoping to make its dreams come true is the Lancaster-Depew 12U Baseball Travel Team. The team is holding a chance auction fundraiser from 7 to 11 p.m. Friday in Macaroon's, 275 Dick Road, Depew. Proceeds will help pay for a trip this summer to the Cooperstown Dreamspark.

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PEACE MEAL -- The folks from the advocacy group Buffalo Food Not Bombs make their points for peace not with protest signs, but with pots and pans. The group underscores its message about war by serving a free vegan meal in downtown Buffalo twice weekly -- at 1 p.m. Mondays in Lafayette Square and at 2 p.m. Saturdays in Niagara Square.

To support their cause, there's a benefit show at 8 p.m. Saturday in the Vault, 702 Main St. Providing music will be the Stamplickers, the dance music cover band from Amy's Place, and Sister Shade, an improvised music trio. Donations of pasta and rice will be appreciated. For info, donations or to volunteer, email

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY -- Stan Evans, Sarah Kulpa Mason, Jim Whalen, Jon Huller, Dolores Fitzgerald, Cheryl Kamholz, Eleanor Jedrysik, Tim Wendel, Kim Merrihew, Shauna Bryn Mann, Rachel Ratajczak, Carol Mueller, Paul Lexner, Carlo DiRienzo, Don Bills, Sandra Morgan, Jennifer Barrett Cerroni, Sandy Radwan, Sally Markwell, Jean Dabek, Joe Schleelein, Peggy Griffin Gilmour and Gary O'Neill.

AND THURSDAY -- Lillian Nichter, Bud Seidenberg, Dawn Ruszczyk, Karen Wnuk, Alicia Cornell, Alvin Romance, Gale Burstein, Tim Sutton, Joe Zoyhofski, Larry Jones, Cathy Slisz, Dawn Yeates, Bree Elizabeth Yeates, Francis Faltisko, Irene Kenner, Alice Suor, Milly Korn, Melanie Occhino, Cindy Stypa, Al Klodzinski, Ryan Lindenau, Jack William Drago, Tom Fox, Lynsey Cycon and Denise Dabek.