A CHEER … to the Ontario County Historical Society, on hosting the History Day competition last month. Forty-seven middle school students participated in the event, with entries ranging from research papers to table-top exhibits to digital documentaries and websites. Judges reviewed entries and made decisions on who will compete in the statewide competition in Cooperstown.

A JEER … to the NFL schedule makers, for limiting what many football experts believe are the up-and-coming Buffalo Bills to zero primetime games, at least not yet. The Bills travel to New England on Dec. 22 and if the matchup has playoff implications, the game could be moved to Sunday night. Who knows, the Bills may already have clinched a spot by then! This may be the year the Bills sneak up on a few teams and, perhaps, the NFL itself. Too bad the primetime spotlight appears to have eluded the Bills, for now.

A CHEER ... to local school districts — including Honeoye, Palmyra-Macedon and Penn Yan — who have been honored nationally for excellence in music education. Those schools, plus a number of others in the greater Rochester area, are among 623 in the nation (out of more than 13,000) honored by the National Association of Music Merchants Foundation as "best communities for music education." Schools and districts are evaluated based on funding, staffing of highly qualified teachers, commitment to standards and access to music instruction. That's music to these communities' ears.

A CHEER ... to the state Legislature and governor, for a new law, effective immediately, that requires employers with three hours of paid leave to vote. Employers must also post an easily-seen notice about the law in the workplace so employees know they have this right. For their part, employees are required to notify their employer at least two working days before the election, among other conditions. Those whose work schedules have made it difficult to get to the polls in the past should now find it easier to exercise their right and responsibility as citizens.

A CHEER ... to agriculture leaders recently recognized at the Ontario County Agriculture Appreciation Banquet. Among the honorees: Nancy Anderson of Palmyra and the Nicholson family (of Red Jacket Orchards in Geneva), with the Rodney Lightfoote Agricultural Viability, Leadership and Innovation Award; Lori Weykman of Clifton Springs, with the Jackie Kunes Outstanding Woman in Agriculture Award; Dustin Coryn of Canandaigua, with the Paul and Peg Zimmerman Outstanding Young Farmer Award; Annaleigh DeBoover of Phelps, with the Ralph Jerome Scholarship; and Corrine Brown of Clifton Springs, Katie Buddle of Geneva and Morgan Smithling of Stanley, with Ontario County Farm Bureau Agricultural Citizenship scholarships.