Piano students of Mary Handley recently competed in the Burlington Rotary Music Festival in Canada and took home six gold medals. Winners included Griffin Kramer, a senior at Amherst High School; Johanna Fritzinger, a freshman at Williamsville South High School; Victoria Ruggiero, a sophomore at Lancaster High School; Michael McClure, a seventh-grader at Elmwood Franklin School, and Ben Havey, a freshman at Kenmore West High School.


St. Joseph's Collegiate Institute kicked off its annual Food Basket on Monday to collect nonperishable food items to be distributed to the Warming House in Olean and several other community soup kitchens. Food items will be collected on school days from 7 to 8 a.m. at the school, 845 Kenmore Ave., through Dec. 16. For information, call 874-4024.


The New York State Library, in conjunction with the Collaborative Summer Library Program, is holding a competition for teens to promote reading. The "You Are Here" Teen Video Challenge 2011 invites teenagers to create a 30- to 90-second video using the slogan "You Are Here" to promote summer reading at their local libraries. The winning entry will win $250 and his or her library will receive $100. For details, visit


Matt James will bring his Cool Music for Kids to Pottery Barn Kids at the Walden Galleria, Cheektowaga, at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. next Thursday.


Students between eighth and 12th grades who live within 60 miles of Buffalo are invited to submit a one-act play for a chance to win a $1,000 scholarship in the Write to Be Heard contest. Visit or e-mail for rules and where to send the play (hard copies only).


The Maria Love Charity Ball will be held in the grand ballroom of the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center at 6 p.m. Dec. 3 for students in grades five through eight. The dance for high school students will be held from 9 to 11:30 p.m. Formal dress is required. Tickets are $45 and must be purchased in advance. For information, call 635-3333 or visit


Ashley Arter, a senior at Sweet Home High School, designed a wedding dress that is on display at the Festival of Trees through Dec. 3 at the Hyatt Regency Buffalo, 2 Fountain Plaza. Working from her hand-drawn design, Ashley and her classmates at Erie 1 BOCES Fashion Design and Merchandising program at Potter Career and Technical Center in West Seneca, created the dress. The team included: Taylor Schutt, Maryvale High School; Elizabeth Kulik, John F. Kennedy High School; Rebecca Rotunno, Kenmore East High School; Angeline Zilka, West Seneca West High School; Jackie Turoldo, Kenmore East High School; and Elizabeth Hastreiter, Lackawanna High School.