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Jewish community to mark anniversary of Israel

Western New York's Jewish community will celebrate the 64th anniversary of Israel's declaration of independence Thursday with a rally in front of Buffalo City Hall and a party in Temple Beth Tzedek, 621 Getzville Road, Amherst.

Mayor Byron W. Brown, Deputy Erie County Executive Richard Tobe and Jewish leaders will join in the rally at noon in Niagara Square. The Yom Ha'Atzmaut (Independence Day) Party will be held at 6:30 p.m., featuring live music by the Mickey Lewin Band from Toronto, a kosher dinner buffet and an open bar with Israeli wines and beers. Tickets are $60.

The celebration will continue with an Israeli Cultural Fun Fest from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at Temple Beth Tzedek. The festival will feature live music, crafts, dancing, Israeli vendors and activities for youngsters and adults. Admission is $2. For further information, visit



Joan A. Male Center is now Family Help Center

The Joan A. Male Family Support Center will now be known as the Family Help Center.

The new name for the agency, which helps children and families in need, was announced Tuesday evening at its annual volunteer recognition reception in its headquarters at 60 Dingens St. It also has a new website address:

During the reception, the agency presented its first Joan A. Male Family Champion Award to Robert M. Bennett, chancellor emeritus of the state Board of Regents. Phyllis Wyman was honored as Volunteer of the Year, the GM Tonawanda Engine Plant for Corporate Caring, and Erin Herman for Youth Leadership.



Chief court clerk given service award

LOCKPORT -- Colleen Wagner, chief clerk of Lockport City Court, was honored Tuesday with the Eighth Judicial District Quality Service Award.

Wagner, who has worked in the courts since 1989, received the award from Justice Paula L. Feroleto, administrative judge for the Eighth Judicial District, and City Judges William J. Watson and Thomas M. DiMillo.

Feroleto said, "Colleen is exceptionally dedicated to our Eighth Judicial District team. She has implemented a number of changes as chief clerk at Lockport City Court and throughout the Eighth Judicial District, including the rollout of new cashiering, revenue and bail systems. In the midst of these initiatives, Colleen also accepted responsibility serving as acting chief clerk of North Tonawanda City Court."



Medical center auxiliary to hold Rock-A-Thon

NIAGARA FALLS -- Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center needs people who want to rock.

The medical center auxiliary will hold its 11th annual Rock-A-Thon from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday in the hospital. Participants will rock in chairs for half-hour increments, with each rocker soliciting pledges. Prospective participants sign up by calling 278-4159 or 579-3406.