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The subject of this morning's forum, sponsored by the Niagara Frontier Industry Education Council, was the government reform initiative that local activist Kevin Gaughan has been spearheading. An audience of more than 100 local business, labor and education leaders heard Gaughan's familiar call to downsize local government through referendums. Those vot…

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Members of Cirque du Soleil's "Dralion" perform Wednesday night in HSBC Arena. This was the first of seven shows here. Read Arts Writer Colin Dabkowski's review here. Good morning. Here are this morning's top headlines: Cosmetic surgery usage for Buffalo Public Schools employees tripled in six years to $9 million. Carl Paladino and Andrew Cuomo co…

Construction work that has closed the northbound South Grand Island Bridge at night for nearly seven months is on schedule to wrap up in about two weeks. Workers are in the final stages of the $48.2 million project to replace the deck of the bridge and expect to stop closing the span at night by Nov. 12, as long as the weather cooperates, said Thomas E. Peri…

There's always someone who walks into David DeJac's DC Theatricks on Main Street in Buffalo looking for a last-minute Halloween costume. Sometimes, it comes right down to the wire. "Every now and then, we dress someone as they're on the way to the party," said DeJac, owner of DC Theatricks on Main Street. "It's almost our 30th Halloween, …

2:30 p.m.: A line of thunderstorms that will whip through the region this evening is expected to bring damaging winds. A wind storm that slammed the midwest earlier today will arrive in Western New York after 5:30 p.m. with thunderstorms and strong winds. The area could see gusts of wind between 35 and 50 mph, according to the National Weather Service. A tornado watch…

Good morning. A wind and thunderstorm could roll in tonight. A hazardous weather outlook issued this morning by the National Weather Service says damaging winds are possible this evening as a squall line of thunderstorms moves in from the midwest. Its forecast for today calls for a high near 75 in the Buffalo area. Here's a look at a few of the latest headlines: - A n…

Eileen Voss, of the Muscoreil's team, works on their entry in the Nickel City Cake Challenge on Sunday afternoon at Artisan Kitchen and Baths in Buffalo. (Charles Lewis /Buffalo News) Read Staff Reporter Mark Sommer's story on the event here. Good morning. Here are this morning's top headlines: In the race for governor, there's an air of uncertainty ab…

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There's the story of how Robert G. Schneider earned a Silver Star for valor in World War II by stringing radio cable while under German fire and how the comic strip "Li'l Abner" saved his life when he returned from the night mission. But that tale will have to wait a moment while the 89-year-old retired sales manager pays tribute to an old friend from the war. "There…

James Wild, of Getzville, picks out a pumpkin amid a sea of orange during the annual Fall Festival at the Great Pumpkin Farm in Clarence on Oct 2.  (Photo by Derek Gee / Buffalo News) Halloween falls on a Sunday this year, and that's left some to wonder when to celebrate. Most towns in Erie and Niagara counties are setting trick-or-treating hours on Oct. 31.…

Good morning. It'll be breezy out there today, with a high near 61 in the Buffalo area, according to the National Weather Service. Its forecast calls for wind gusts as high as 36 mph today. Here's a look at a few of the latest headlines: - Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew M. Cuomo insists he plans no major changes in upstate hydropower policy after raising eyebrow…

Good morning. The National Weather Service has forecast a chance of showers this morning with a high near 56 in the Buffalo area. A chance of rain will show up again Wednesday. Here's a look at a few of the latest headlines: - The debate between seven candidates for governor in Hempstead on Monday will likely be more recalled for one-liners and comic relief than a sub…

In the wake of one of the most successful and most media-covered mining rescues in history, Buffalo native Mark Nowak, a poet, labor activist, and mining disaster expert, wants people to recognize this fact: The Chilean mining rescue was an exception, a rare happy ending in a history book filled with tragedy. "What usually happens is that miners die, almost everyday s…

58th District State Senate candidates will meet at West Seneca East High School this evening for their second debate of the race. Republican Jack F. Quinn III and Democrat Timothy M. Kennedy, who in their first debate focused on problems with the state's Medicaid and pension systems, as well as job creation, will begin answering questions at 7 p.m. In the most recent poll …

Good morning. Today temperatures will range from a high of 53 to a low of 37 degrees with mostly cloudy skies, says the National Weather Service. Here are some of the stories making news this morning: -New Yorkers will find out this evening whether the first -- and possibly only -- debate of New York's gubernatorial campaign can go from what has often been a late-night com…

A wall drawing that covers 2,200 square feet is the newest work on display at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. The work -- which took 16 artists at the task seven hours a day nearly two months to complete -- was designed by Sol LeWitt, an American artist considered to have been a pioneer in Minimalism and Conceptual art. Here's a story by Staff Reporter Mark…