A Time For Celebration

The holidays are always a busy, but wonderful time. And, now that the new year is here, the bulk of celebrating is behind me. But, I still have a few important events coming up over the next couple of months.

In just seven days, I’ll celebrate my 28th birthday. Having a birthday so near New Year’s Day has always made the experience one that is very contemplative. I look back on where I’ve been, consider who I’ve become and where I’m headed. This year will be a little different from the rest though. Last year, as I considered where my life was heading, I never would have guessed that a week later I’d meet the woman with whom I’d be celebrating an anniversary. Our anniversary falls between her birthday, which is also Valentine’s Day, and mine.

For our anniversary celebration, we opted to minimize travel time and maximize our budget. And, because the date falls during the off-season, we were able to plan a very inexpensive, but amazing mini-vacation to Niagara Falls. During the planning process, we were unsure of what we wanted to do, but we found a common theme that we often returned to was the idea of visiting a natural attraction. I’ve been to the falls before and been on the Maid of the Mist during the summertime, which was awe-inspiring, but I’ve never been to the falls during the winter season.

We found a deal on www.niagaraparks.com, called the “Niagara Magic Pass,” which will put us behind and at the foot of the Horseshoe Falls, let us take a walk through a butterfly conservatory and witness the creation of the falls via a 4-D movie experience. In addition to that, we managed to find some very good deals on nice hotels and made reservations at some great restaurants. All in all the vacation is shaping up to be the best ever.

As to what’s happening here this weekend, you’ll find holiday-inspired events, as well as some for those who just want to catch some tunes.

HIGHLIGHTS

Chautauqua Chamber Singers To Present “Twelfth Night – A Celebration of the Season”: Under the direction of Rebecca Ryan, the Chautauqua Chamber Singers will present “Twelfth Night – a Celebration of the Season” at 7:30 p.m. on Friday at First Presbyterian Church, Prendergast Avenue in Jamestown. A second performance will be at 4 p.m. Sunday at the First United Methodist Church, 200 Market St. in Warren.

With costumed singers, candlelight, readings and music both new and old, this concert has become, for many, a traditional ending of the Christmas season.

A pie reception hosted by the Chautauqua Chamber Singers will follow each performance. Pre-sale tickets are $10 for adults, $9 for seniors and $5 for students. Ticket prices at the door are $12 for adults and seniors, and $5 for students. Group rates are available. For more information, call the Community Music Project Inc. at 664-2227.

Youth Rockin’ Resolutions Music Fest Is Friday: The Youth Empowerment Program will present a music festival on Friday from 5-9 p.m. at the Gateway Family Center, 31 Water St. in Jamestown.

The show will feature Adam McKillip, Peopleareloudmovers, DJ 80N3 and Chris Bell. Those with the best New Year’s resolutions will win a prize. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Youth Empowerment Program, Compeer and the Child Advocacy Program.

Admission to the event is $4. And, food will be available for purchase. For more information search for “Youth Rockin’ Resolutions Music Fest 2013” on Facebook.

Concert Band To Perform Saturday: The Chautauqua Concert Band will perform its 19th annual concert at the Reg Lenna Civic Center at 7 p.m. Saturday.

The show will feature a concert band classics theme, is conducted by John Cross and narrated by Dennis Webster. The show will also feature more than 200 middle school musicians from 16 local schools.

Tickets can be purchased at the Reg Lenna Civic Center box office by calling 484-7070 or online at reglenna.com.

Live At The Met Season Features “Les Troyens”: The 1891 Fredonia Opera House continues the 2012-13 season with Hector Berloiz’s grand Trojan War epic, “Les Troyens” (The Trojans), on Saturday at noon.

Met Principal Conductor Fabio Luisi leads a rare revival of the epic, which Berlioz based on Virgil’s “Aeneid.” Marcello Giordani stars as Aeneas, the Trojan hero whose adventures take him from the fall of Troy to the shores of the North African kingdom of Carthage. Deborah Voigt sings Cassandra, the Trojan prophetess who tries to warn her countrymen of the dangers about to befall them; and Susan Graham makes her Met role debut as Dido, the Carthaginian queen who gives her heart to Aeneas with disastrous consequences.

Tickets are $20, or $15 for students, and may be purchased in person at the Opera House Box Office, by phone at 679-1891 or online at fredopera.org.

HAPPENINGS

To include an upcoming show or event in this column, email drader@post-journal.com or call 487-1111 ext. 253 by Monday.

Tonight

Blue Grass Jam: 7-10 p.m., Celoron Legion, 26 Jackson Ave. in Celoron. Area bluegrass musicians are welcome to sit in and play.

Friday

Black Widow Band: 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., Murdock’s, 104 E. Main St. in Sherman.

Steve Johnson And Charity Nuse: 10 p.m., The Tap Room, 43 E. Main St. (Route 20) in Westfield.

Saturday

Opera House Cinema Series To Screen “The Sessions”: 7:30 p.m., 1891 Fredonia Opera House, 9 Church St. in Fredonia.

Howard Buck And The Rustic Ramblers: 8 p.m. to midnight, Celoron Legion, 26 Jackson Ave. in Celoron.

Steve Johnson And Charity Nuse: 8 p.m., The Bellini Lounge, Chautauqua Suites, 215 W. Lake Road (Route 394) in Mayville.

Tuesday

Opera House Cinema Series To Screen “The Sessions”: 7:30 p.m., 1891 Fredonia Opera House, 9 Church St. in Fredonia.