High school students in Western New York are invited to participate in next year's War of 1812 speech and art competition, as part of the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Queenston Heights. Events are scheduled for the weekend of Oct. 12-14, 2012. Interested schools, teachers or students are welcome to send an email to to get their name on a list for program information and updates.



The Town of Hamburg Recreation Department is hosting a night of Halloween fun from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday at Woodlawn State Park. The event will feature a spooky haunted boardwalk, and Nature Adventures will have a Creatures of the Night display. Costumes are encouraged. Other activities will include face painting and trick-or-treating. Cost is $5. For information, call 646-5145.



The 17th annual Galleria of Treats to benefit Kids Escaping Drugs will be held from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. today in the new wing of Walden Galleria (near Regal Cinemas and Forever 21) in Cheektowaga. Tickets are $2. For information, call 827-9462 or visit



Jarod Yap, 11, is the winner of the 12th Annual Empire State Junior High Piano Award. This award is given annually by the New York State Music Teachers Association to the most promising pianist in a New York State middle school. He is a member of the Greater Buffalo Youth String Orchestra, Clarence Middle School Orchestra, Clarence Swim Club, Clarence Science Club and Books & Bytes Club. He also enjoys soccer.



Williamsville South High School Drama Club will present "A Midsummer Night's Dream" at 7 p.m. next Thursday, Nov. 4 and 5 in the school auditorium, 5950 Main St., Williamsville. Tickets are $8 and will be available at the door.



Just Buffalo Literary Center kicks off its Babel author series with a lecture, question-and-answer period and book signing with Amos Oz at 8 tonight in Kleinhans Music Hall, 3 Symphony Circle. Cost is $35; $10 for students.