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LOCAL NEWS
 BRIEFS

Allegiant Air's first flight
from Falls to Florida is today

NIAGARA FALLS – Allegiant Air's first flight from Niagara Falls International Airport to Punta Gorda, Fla., will take off at 7 p.m. today.

The twice-a-week flights to the Southwest Florida city, which is near Fort Myers, brings to four the number of Florida destinations the low-cost carrier serves from Niagara Falls. The others are Orlando, St. Petersburg/Clearwater, and Fort Lauderdale, to which Allegiant begins service Sunday.

In March, Direct Air unexpectedly dropped the Niagara Falls-Punta Gorda route, leaving passengers stranded. That airline later filed for bankruptcy.

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Cochrane's first wire-walk postponed until next week

NIAGARA FALLS, Ont. – Jay Cochrane's wire-walk between the Skylon Tower and Hilton Fallsview Hotel has been postponed until next Friday. It was scheduled for 7 tonight.

Cochrane needed more time to set up his 1,300-foot wire between the hotel towers, his manager Mark Phillips said Thursday. Suspended nearly 600 feet above the pavement, the 68-year-old daredevil will begin his series of wire-walks next Friday without a tether. The walks will run nightly at 7 p.m. until Sept. 24.

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Barker Chocolate Box seeks online votes for contest prize

BARKER — BarkerChocolate Box is looking for 250 votes from the community in its attempt to secure a $250,000 small-business grant. The deadline is Saturday.

Owner Cindy Jex hopes her business will be chosen for Chase and LivingSocial's "Mission: Small BusinessSM" grant. The nationwide program provides up to $3 million to small-business owners and have also obtained the support of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

The grant program will award up to 12 individual grants of $250,000 nationwide to provide small businesses with capital and innovative marketing resources. "I am opening my brick and mortar shop this fall, and I want to grow my business, hire more local folks and bring people to this area. I would like to tie my product to the wonderful traffic on the Niagara Wine Trail .?.?. and this grant would be used to make that happen," Jex said.

Those looking to vote can click on the "Support" button at missionsmallbusiness.com and vote for Barker Chocolate Box. Voters can email Jex at cindyjex@gmail.com with their vote number and they will be registered to win $50 worth of homemade chocolates.

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Buffalo River Tours offered 
on five dates this summer

The Industrial Heritage Committee's annual, two-hour Historic Buffalo River Tour will be offered five times this summer – July 4, July 21, Aug. 4, Aug. 19 and Sept. 3. The tour covers the history, architecture and technology of the grain elevators, flour mills and other industries along the Buffalo River.

Tours leave the Miss Buffalo Dock, Erie Basin Marina at 12:30 p.m. Tickets are $16 for adults, $11 kids 4 to 11. For more information, call 856-6696. There also will be a tour of the Col. Francis G. Ward Pumping Station pump house at 1 p.m. on Sept. 22. For info, call 835-8547.