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

1. A Band Named Sue will kick off a Johnny Cash birthday bash at 10 p.m. in Nietzsche's, 248 Allen St. It's the latest installment of the Good Neighborhood's bimonthly Tributaries series supporting Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper. It also will feature four other bands that will pay tribute the late country singer, who would have turned 80 years old this month. Joining A Band Named Sue, Buffalo's foremost Cash conjurers, will be Steam Donkeys, Million Dollar Trio, Country-Punk Extravaganza and Shaky Stage.

2. A profusion of color will be on display as the annual Orchid Show and Sale starts at 10 a.m. at the Buffalo & Erie County Botanical Gardens in South Park. The show, held in conjunction with the Niagara Frontier Orchid Society, will include orchid displays, demonstrations, specialty merchandise and care products. There also will be a photography exhibit of orchids by Doug Hansgate and a presentation, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, on the medicinal benefits of plants and common plants that may be toxic to humans and pets. Tickets are $9 adults, $8 seniors and students, and $5 for children 3 to 12. For more information, go to

3. VA Western New York Healthcare System continues to celebrate Black History Month with the arrival of the traveling history exhibition "Blacks in Blue: The U.S. Colored Troops." The exhibition, created by the Veterans Health Administration History Office as part of the national Civil War 150th anniversary commemoration, pays tribute to the first African-Americans to officially serve in the U.S. military, authorized in July 1862 by President Abraham Lincoln. An opening ceremony will be held at noon in Freedom Hall at the Buffalo facility, 3495 Bailey Ave. The public can see the exhibit from 2 to 3 p.m. today, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday and from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday.

4. The Buffalo Museum of Science will host a Family Snowshoe Hike through the Tifft Nature Preserve, provided new snow arrives. The hike is set from 7 to 8:30 p.m. and will conclude with offerings of a warm drink in Tifft's cabin. Tickets are $7 for nonmembers. Buffalo Museum of Science members save 10 percent. Pre-registration required. To register call 896-5200, Ext. 338.

5. The 52nd annual Lockport Exchange Club Family Circus kicks off tonight in the Kenan Center Arena, 433 Locust St., Lockport. The two-day event, which resumes at 1 and 4 p.m. Saturday, will feature a live circus band, acrobats, clowns, jugglers, magicians and audience participation. All proceeds will benefit local charities.

6. The Buffalo Sabres are back at it tonight as they continue their dogged effort to climb closer to a playoff spot. Tonight's opponent for the 7:30 p.m. start on First Niagara Center ice is the hated Boston Bruins. The last time the two met, the Sabres skated away with a 6-0 victory. Is it too much to hope that they can repeat it?

7. With everyone's attention on the Oscars Sunday night, don't expect much out of the new movies opening today. The nation's critics grudgingly concede that the best of them is "Wanderlust," a predictable comedy in which an overstressed couple played by Paul Rudd and Jennifer Aniston find themselves in a carefree commune. Also opening -- the Navy SEALS drama "Act of Valor," the horror film "Gone" and the latest romantic comedy from actor and director Tyler Perry, "Tyler Perry's Good Deeds," in which Perry is a businessman who falls in love with a cleaning lady played by Thandie Newton.


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