1. The telecast of tonight’s Buffalo Bills-Miami Dolphins game in Ralph Wilson Stadium will be carried on a station where Bills games haven’t been seen before – WBBZ, Channel 67, or Channel 5 on most cable systems, which ordinarily is the home of classic TV series like “The Twilight Zone” and “Perry Mason.” WBBZ “entered a very aggressive bid” with the NFL Network, which airs the game, said Bob Koshinski, the station’s general manager and vice president, to win the right to simulcast the game. Coverage will begin with a two-hour pregame show at 6 p.m.
2. One of the sensations of the Thursday at the Harbor concert series last summer was Sister Sparrow & the Dirty Birds, a soulful nine-piece powerhouse from Brooklyn fronted by a fiery female singer, Arleigh Kinecheloe, aka Sister Sparrow. They vowed to be back soon, and they make good on that promise tonight in the Town Ballroom, 681 Main St. Doors open at 7. Music starts around 8. Tickets are $15.
3. Books and DVDs of Polish and Polish-American culture, history and culinary arts are featured as the book fair portion of the Polish Film Festival, Art Exhibit and Book Fair at Canisius College opens today in the Montante Cultural Center, 2001 Main St. Hours are 1 to 7:30 p.m. today through Saturday. An art exhibit in conjunction with the book fair features works by Polish-born painter Andrzej Kozyra. Admission is free. For details, visit canisius.edu/newsevents.
4. Erie County’s budget process grinds forward today with the County Legislature hearing from the offices of the county executive, the district attorney, the Public Works Department and the library system, among others. Later, County Executive Mark Poloncarz will hold a second town hall meeting on the budget at 7 p.m. in Minnie Gillette Auditorium at the ECC City Campus. Meanwhile, in Lockport, the Niagara County budget will be unveiled right on the deadline set by state law. Department heads have been told to make additional 3 percent cuts on top of their previous reductions.
5. A plan to landscape and restore more than three-quarters-of-a-mile of shoreline property along the Buffalo River will be unveiled at a public meeting at 6 p.m. in the Valley Community Center, 93 Leddy St. The nearly 10-acre site, formerly occupied by Republic Steel and Donner Hanna Coke, would be the largest habitat restoration along the river and a model for other large brownfield reclamation projects in the area. Work is expected to start next spring.
6. A trip to Argentina in 2006 inspired entrepreneur Blake Mycoskie to start a company that not only would sell shoes, but also help provide free footwear to poor children. TOMS Shoes started out making alpargatas, a fabric-topped, jute-soled espadrille worn by Argentine peasants, and gave a pair away for each pair sold. So far, more than 1 million have been distributed in 25 countries. The company has gone on to do the same with eyeglasses. Mycoskie appears at 8 p.m. in Alumni Arena on the University at Buffalo North Campus in Amherst as part of UB’s Distinguished Speaker Series. Tickets are $16 to $28.
7. The decorations are hung. The tree is trimmed. All is ready for today’s official kickoff of the 31st annual News Neediest Fund, one of the largest holiday charity programs in Western New York. Lighting the tree at 10:30 a.m. will be News President Warren Colville and Michael Weiner, president of the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County. Area children will place the first of this year’s gifts under the tree, the chorus from Houghton Academy will sing songs of the season, and there will be a special appearance by ballerinas from the Neglia Ballet. Last year’s drive distributed more than $700,000 in toys and food. The drive continues through Dec. 10.