The season is only three weeks old, and the team has only one win thus far, but I’m glad I got to see the Southern Tier Xpress victorious in its home opener.
Now in its third season at the recently rebranded Northwest Arena in Jamestown, the Xpress has seen its fair share of turnover among players and the coaching staff alike. But one constant remains: it’s still exciting hockey.
I first experimented with spectating local hockey when I began attending Jamestown Ironmen games during its debut season in 2011. Following the departure of that team and the arrival of our current NA3HL affiliate in 2013, I’m still as grateful as ever that we still have a team to root for.
It’s no secret that junior hockey in Jamestown has a much-maligned and turbulent past, but so far the Xpress organization seems to be doing everything right – from consistency at the ownership level, to maintaining a strong commitment to providing a quality product on the ice, to maintaining a strong community presence off of it.
The Xpress will face an unprecedented number of challenges in its third season. The NA3HL has expanded in size to include a whopping 48 teams, and division rivals the Metro Jets are thus far looking unstoppable this year. But, as I suspect is the case with most fans of Western New York sports teams, I’m just happy that I have a team to get excited about with the return of each season.
The team will return to home ice for a Friday game against the Pittsburgh Vengeance at 7 p.m. If you haven’t yet had an opportunity to see the hometown boys provide an exciting 60 minutes of edge-of-your-seat hockey, I would highly recommend giving the team a chance. It’s a highly-affordable and family-friendly form of entertainment that will more likely than not keep you hooked.
There are 21 home games remaining this season; I hope to see you by the ice for at least one of them!
And now, here’s some of what you can expect to find in the area this week.
‘Rolling Hills Radio’ To Feature Riales, Smilo In Season Premiere Tonight: The seventh season of WRFA-LP 107.9 FM’s “Rolling Hills Radio” will kick off with a live taping at the Reg Lenna Studio Theater tonight at 6:30 p.m. The program’s 56th overall episode will feature area singer-songwriters Jeff Riales and Tyler Smilo.
Born in Memphis, Tennessee, Jeff Riales now resides in the Rochester area. He has been writing and performing music for most of his life, and his style on the guitar and piano are as unique as the songs he creates. Smilo was born in Texas and traveled extensively before settling in Erie, Pa. An award-winning acoustic artist, Smilo’s Americana influenced folk songs are mostly autobiographical.
The episode’s live taping will begin at 6:30 p.m., but it will be preceded by a pre-taping reception, complete with drinks and mingling, known as “Rolling Happy Hour.” Doors for the reception open at 5:30 p.m. A meet and greet with the artists will be held following the taping. Tickets for the show are $10, and those interested in attending are encouraged to purchase tickets as far in advance as possible. For more information, call the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts box office at 484-7070 or visit reglenna.com.
Infinity To Host ‘Evening Of Jazz Tribute To Benny Goodman’ Friday: Infinity Visual and Performing Arts’ Infinity Jazz Series will present “An Evening of Jazz with a Tribute to Benny Goodman” Friday at 7 p.m. The evening will feature clarinetist Dave Golando, who will interpret the musical compositions of “The King of Swing.” Joining Golando will be: Tom Gestwicki on guitar; Harry Jacobson on bass; and jazz series host, John Cross, on clarinet. Carl Alanakian, from in Baku, Azerbaijan, will play drums for the performance. Alanakian has played with national stars such as Buddy DeFranko, Buster Williams, Sonny Fortune, Dave McKenna, Don Menza, Cal Collins and Lou Tabakin. Sponsored by the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation, Infinity Jazz Series events are free, family friendly and open to the public.
Infinity Visual and Performing Arts is located at 301 E. Second St. For more information, call 664-0991, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit infinityperformingarts.org.
Kidney Connection To Offer ‘Evening Of Entertainment’ Saturday: The WNY Kidney Connection will host an “Evening of Entertainment” fundraising event Saturday at Moon Brook Country Club beginning at 6 p.m. Live music will be provided throughout the evening by local favorite Joe Caprino, who will be accompanied by Joe Iuculano on the accordion. There will also be basket auctions and a wine tasting by certified sommelier Joe Town. The cost is $45 for appetizers and dinner, and a cash bar will be available. All proceeds will stay local to help area residents in need of a kidney transplant.
For more information, or to make reservations, contact Jeanette Ostrom, WNY Kidney Connection president, at 450-8958 or email@example.com.
Trace Adkins To Perform In Salamanca Saturday: The Seneca Allegany Events Center will host country superstar Trace Adkins in a Saturday concert beginning at 7 p.m. Known for his signature songs such as “(This Ain’t) No Thinkin’ Thing,” “Ladies Love Country Boys,” “You’re Gonna Miss This” and “Jesus and Jones,” all but one of Adkins’ studio albums have received gold or platinum certification in the U.S. since his 1995 debut. Tickets start at $20.
The Seneca Allegany Events Center is located at 777 Seneca Allegany Blvd. in Salamanca. For additional information, or to purchase tickets, call 1-877-873-6322 or visit senecaalleganycasino.com/entertainment/events-center/.
Winged Ox Players To Present ‘Our Town’ This Weekend: The Winged Ox Players will present the Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Our Town” by Thornton Wilder on Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. in the Willow Bay Theatre. The play was once described by playwright Edward Albee to be “the greatest American play ever written.” Although it was first presented in 1938, it remains a perennial favorite, with a plot and theme that transcends the original time and place. The production marks the start of the fifth anniversary Season for the Winged Ox Players, an outreach ministry of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. Founded as a means to utilize the artistic talents of the parish and the greater community, the group presents plays that deliver a thought-provoking message while raising funds to support local agencies. A basket giveaway will be held in the lobby at the Willow Bay Theatre during each night’s performance. Proceeds from the ticket sales and the giveaway will go to support Jamestown’s sober living houses, the Birdie Turner House and The UCAN Men’s House.
Tickets for “Our Town” are $10. Advanced tickets may be purchased at St Luke’s church office, 401 N. Main St., Jamestown. For more information, call the church at 483-6405 or visit the Winged Ox Players Facebook page.
Authors Books And More To Hold Final Open Read Night Of 2016 Tuesday: Authors Books and Music – located at 227 Liberty St. in Warren, Pa. – is inviting aspiring writers, poets, lyricists and others to read their works before a live audience at its monthly open read night Tuesday from 6-8 p.m. Listeners are also encouraged to attend this free event held inside the book shop. This will be the open read night’s final occurrence of the 2016 season.
For more information, call 814-688-3009, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit authorsbookstore.com.
To include an upcoming show or event in this column, email email@example.com or call 487-1111, ext. 243 by Monday.
Indian Outlaw DJ Services: 7 p.m., Lakewood Legion, 174 Chautauqua Ave. in Lakewood
Jules-R-Us Karaoke: 8 p.m., Good Time Saloon, 590 Fairmount Ave. in Jamestown
Karaoke with DJ Xcite: 9 p.m., Bullfrog Hotel, 1414 E. Second St. in Jamestown
Karaoke with Felony Entertainment: 10 p.m., Forte, 114 E. Third St. in Jamestown
Cindy Haight: 6 p.m., Good Time Saloon, 590 Fairmount Ave. in Jamestown
Southern Tier Xpress home game: 7 p.m., Northwest Arena, 319 W. Third St. in Jamestown
Karaoke: 8 p.m., Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 865, 41 Bigelow Ave. in Jamestown
Steve Strickland Duo: 9 p.m., Yesterday’s, 103 Chautauqua Ave. in Lakewood
Kaleidoscope with Sky: 10 p.m., Mojo’s Music Bar, 104 E. Second St. in Jamestown
Screamin’ Lou: 10 p.m., Bullfrog Hotel, 1414 E. Second St. in Jamestown
“Florence Foster Jenkins” screening: 8 p.m., Reg Lenna Center for the Arts, 116 E. Third St. in Jamestown
Two for Flinching: 8:30 p.m., Celoron Legion, 26 Jackson Ave. in Jamestown
Jules-R-Us Karaoke: 9 p.m., Good Time Saloon, 590 Fairmount Ave. in Jamestown
Radioactive: 10 p.m., Bullfrog Hotel, 1414 E. Second St. in Jamestown
The Good Neighbors with Danielle and Joe: 10 p.m., Mojo’s Music Bar, 104 E. Second St. in Jamestown
The Probables: 10 p.m., Shawbucks, 212 W. Second St. in Jamestown
Open Jam: 9 p.m., Bullfrog Hotel, 1414 E. Second St. in Jamestown
Open Jam: 10 p.m., Mojo’s Music Bar, 104 E. Second St. in Jamestown