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Where we live: Cheektowaga


Jazz groups from John F. Kennedy, Cheektowaga Central and Cleveland Hill high schools will perform Saturday at JFK High School as part of the fourth annual Jazz@JFK Festival.

Hosted by the high school’s jazz ensemble, the festival’s guest artist this year is baritone saxophonist Bruce Johnstone, director of jazz studies at SUNY Fredonia.

Johnstone will work with the jazz groups from the three high schools in clinics on Friday and Saturday before finishing with Saturday night’s concert, which also features a performance by the JFK Alumni Jazz Ensemble.

Originally from New Zealand, Johnstone began performing in the United States with the Maynard Ferguson band in the early 1970s. He has also performed and recorded with Woody Herman, Dexter Gordon, Stan Kenton, Don Menza and many others.

The performance begins at 7 p.m. in the Greenauer Auditorium, 305 Cayuga Creek Road.

Elsewhere, the application deadline for the Jackie Schmid Memorial Scholarship is May 1. The Scholarship Fund was established in 2013 to remember Jackie Schmid, a well-known and beloved community servant in Cheektowaga. “Jackie was known for helping everyone she could,” said Scholarship Committee President Barbara Falcone. “Doing good things for students in Cheektowaga through this scholarship fund is a meaningful way to carry on her memory.” Six scholarships of $1,500 each will be available this year. One student from each school district in Cheektowaga – John F. Kennedy (Cheektowaga-Sloan), Cheektowaga Central, Maryvale, Cleveland Hill, and Depew – will be chosen to receive an award, in addition to one student who attends a private or parochial school and resides in Cheektowaga. Eligible applicants must be high school seniors who live in the Town of Cheektowaga who demonstrate a record of community service, an academic average above an 85, and Polish heritage within three generations. Applicants are also required to submit an essay. Schmid played an instrumental role in organizing many community events in Cheektowaga. Events and organizations that Jackie was involved in include the General Pulaski Parade, Polish-American Arts Festival, Independence Day Parade, Cheektowaga Patriotic Commission, Crabapple Festival, Squeezefest, and the Cheektowaga Symphony Orchestra. Respected and beloved by Western New York’s elected and civic leaders, Jackie served as Vice Chair to the Cheektowaga Democratic Committee and as Executive Assistant to Congressman Brian Higgins. She died in July 2012. For more information and to view the scholarship application, please visit

This week:

• The Town Board meets at 6:45 p.m. Monday in Town Hall, 3301 Broadway.

• The Maryvale School Board will hold a special meeting Tuesday at 8 a.m. in the Samuel R. Bennett building on the main campus, 1050 Maryvale Drive, to discuss the BOCES administrative budget vote and election.

• The Cleveland Hill School Board meets at 6 p.m. Tuesday to adopt its 2016-2017 budget at 105 Mapleview Road.

• The Cheektowaga Central School Board meets at 7 p.m. to adopt its 2016-2017 budget Tuesday at 3600 Union Road.

• The Cheektowaga-Sloan School Board meets at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Irma Czubaj board room at Woodrow Wilson Elementary, 166 Halstead Avenue, Sloan.

• The Town Zoning Board of Appeals meets at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Town Hall.

• The Cheektowaga Community Symphony Orchestra will perform Broadway on Broadway Act IV, featuring the music of Bernstein, Loesser, Rota & Gershwin at 3 p.m. next Sunday in the Cheektowaga Senior Center, 3349 Broadway. The guest conductor is Douglas Shaw. The concerts are free and open to the public. Free will donations are accepted to support the orchestra.