Vermont Announces Annual Summer ‘Vermont Fuels Your Vacation’ PromotionMONTPELIER, Vt. – Governor Jim Douglas has announced that the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing will kick off its third annual fuel-themed tourism promotion to encourage visitors and Vermonters to explore the state this summer. “Vermont Fuels Your Vacation” is a 15-week promotion featuring a $100 gas card giveaway every week. Vermont residents and non-residents can register to win at www.VermontVacation.com/fuel(link is external) and gas cards may be used at participating gas stations in Vermont. Entries will be accepted from June 16 through late September with the first gas card giveaway drawing on June 23.”Vermont is well positioned geographically because it is within a 300-mile radius of more than 80 million people who may opt for shorter drives and closer destinations this summer,” said Governor Douglas.Six of ten (59 percent) Americans who are currently planning a trip with their car, truck or SUV this summer will not change their travel plans even with additional increases in the price of gas, according to the Travel Industry of America.Still, travel-related fuel promotions are continuing to grow in popularity. Established in 2006, the “Vermont Fuels Your Vacation” promotion received an average of 240 entries per week last summer. Several inns and lodging properties around the state are currently offering fuel-saving packages and gas card promotions to attract visitors as well.”The cost of gas continues to be a topic of concern for people, so this promotion is definitely a great way to attract visitors and encourage residents to explore all of the great things Vermont has to offer,” said Tourism and Marketing Commissioner Bruce Hyde. “The ‘Vermont Fuels Your Vacation’ clearly resonates with consumers and provides a positive twist on some of the constant coverage of rising fuel prices.”Visitors make an estimated total of 13.4 million trips to Vermont. Thirty-seven percent of those visitors come to Vermont during the summer, making it the busiest time of the year in terms of total visitors. Total direct spending by visitors adds an estimated $1.57 billion to the Vermont economy annually and supports more than 36,000 jobs for Vermonters.###
PHOTO: Front Porch Fest 11 | Spirithaven Farm | Stuart VA | Photo © Roger Gupta Front Porch Fest, produced by One Family Productions and presented by Patrick County, Virginia is pleased to announce an exciting slate of local, regional, and national acts to perform at the 12th annual event this Labor Day weekend, September 3 – 6, 2020. Held on the front porch to the Blue Ridge mountains, this yearly event weaves together a love of music and community. Front Porch Fest 12 is set to be a dynamic year as the organizers work to offer a wide range of talented performing artists, children’s activities, and vendors, creating fun for the entire family while raising money and awareness for local community organizations and charities. Front Porch Fest 11 | Spirithaven Farm | Stuart VA | Photo © Roger Gupta FRONT PORCH FEST announces 2020 initial band line up including Toubab Krewe, The Nth Power, The Wooks and more! Tier 1 general admission 4-day tickets and VIP tickets are available, as well as car camping and RV passes. The festival is a family-friendly event and children 12 and under are free – they can groove to the tunes while creating arts and crafts and other fun activities in the Children’s Area. In addition, the festival features plenty of food and merchandise vendors to ensure an enjoyable weekend. For additional information, to see the lineup, and to purchase tickets for this unforgettable weekend, search for Front Porch Fest on social media or visit the website at www.frontporchfest.com. FPF is produced by One Family Productions, a non-profit organization with the mission of promoting and supporting community enrichment and growth. We create impactful partnerships and events that are accessible, innovative and engaging. Proceeds from this event are donated to local charities such as the Patrick County Community Food Bank and Caring Hearts Free Clinic of Patrick County and others. Front Porch Fest is a volunteer-run organization and is always looking for energetic and motivated volunteers to join the family. Volunteer opportunities are currently available in a wide variety of departments. Anyone interested in working in trade for their ticket is encouraged to apply as a volunteer by visiting the website! The 2020 lineup features a diverse range of acts, spanning genres such as bluegrass, folk, soul, americana, gospel, blues, funk, and more. The instrumental powerhouse TOUBAB KREWE swirls together rock, African traditions, jam sensibilities, and international folk. Proving that soul music can be exponentially greater than the sum of its parts, The Nth Power is on a mission to share the light. Local fan-favorite Big Daddy Love returns to the porch again this year and is no gentle string quartet; their music has been described as “a blend of rock, bluegrass, southern soul, and psychedelic jams.” The Wooks translate the sights and sounds of the people, hills, bars, roads, and creeks around them into songs and shows that captivate. The Judy Chops have been carving out their niche in the Virginia music scene by delivering heartfelt, passionate live shows with charm and grace while utilizing their amazing vocals, lush arrangements, and sonic bravado to fuse elements of blues, rock, swing, soul, and classic country. Space Koi a three-piece reggae/rock band blending a variety of music genres that will entertain crowds of many musical tastes by combining modern reggae rock with blues and funk and performing both originals and fan-favorite covers. Staying true to their jazz roots, Hambone Relay’s live shows are a mixture of danceable grooves, psychedelic overtones, and improvisational jams. Borrowed Earth presents original material that strives to put the listener in a state of contemplation and joy as they share their mission of bringing a message of peace, love, and light through the positive energy and universal language of music. You won’t be able to miss Fluidity Performance at Front Porch Fest 2020 engaging in workshops and enhancing the atmosphere around stages throughout the weekend. Their high energy LED, silk veil fans, and masterful manipulation of day props such as hula hoops will leave you wanting more. Marvelous Funkshun features soaring guitar and pedal steel over a heavy groove. The Freeway Jubilee provides a refreshing, explosive blend of gospel-tinged southern rock and hard-driving soulful grooves met with a flare of psychedelic mountain music. Local blues boogie band SLICK JR. & The REACTORS are joined alongside returning artists such as GOTE, a versatile group with an eclectic blend of originals and cover material, they play a different show every time they hit the stage. In addition, fans will enjoy ‘new to the porch’ acts like Music Road Co Moving who fluidly moves from funk to reggae, rock to afrobeat; their sound bounces from blues and soul to island dance and back again, bound together by one common ideal: music should feel good and spread positive vibes. Visit their website at http://frontporchfest.com/
Apr 27, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – China reported its 18th human case of H5N1 avian influenza today as Ivory Coast awaited the results of tests that will tell whether it is Africa’s latest country faced with outbreaks in poultry.China’s Ministry of Health said the new patient is an 8-year-old girl from the southwestern province of Sichuan, according to a statement from the World Health Organization (WHO). She became ill with fever and pneumonia Apr 16 and is in a hospital.The WHO said investigators determined that some poultry died recently near the girl’s home. Test results confirmed yesterday that her infection was H5N1, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported today.Twelve of China’s 18 human cases have been fatal. The WHO’s global tally now stands at 205 human cases with 113 deaths.Ivory Coast officials reported the two suspected poultry outbreaks of H5N1 to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) on Apr 25. The disease is suspected on the basis of clinical signs and tests at two laboratories in the country, the report said. The OIE reference lab in Padua, Italy, is running confirmatory tests.The sick birds included 16 backyard ducks and chickens and one sparrow hawk in two communes in the Abidjan district of the Lagunes region, says the report by Dr. Denis Kouakou, the country’s director of veterinary services.The Ivorian government said it would set up telephone hotlines and send out mobile surveillance units while waiting for the test results, according to an AFP report today.If cases are confirmed, Ivory Coast will be Africa’s seventh country invaded by the virus. Nigeria was hit first, in early February, followed by Egypt, Niger, Cameroon, Burkina Faso, and Sudan. Egypt is the only one of the group with human cases—12 of them, including 4 deaths.In the United Kingdom, meanwhile, an H7 strain of avian flu is suspected in some poultry deaths on one farm in Norfolk in eastern England, according to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).”The preliminary test results show that it is likely to be the H7 strain of avian influenza, and not H5N1,” the agency said yesterday. Confirmatory tests were under way.H7 viruses can be highly pathogenic in poultry and can infect humans but have rarely caused serious human illness. During a major poultry outbreak of H7N7 in the Netherlands in 2003, 89 people were infected and one veterinarian died. The human cases were generally mild, mainly involving conjunctivitis. In addition, a few poultry workers became ill during an H7N3 outbreak in poultry in British Columbia, Canada, in 2004.BBC News said today that 35,000 birds on Witford Lodge Farm, about 13 miles west of the city of Norwich, would be killed to contain the outbreak.Dennis Foreman, a spokesman for the company operating the farm, said the number of infected birds was “minimal” and the outbreak came “completely out of the blue,” according to an AFP report.The outbreak comes a few weeks after the H5N1 virus was first discovered in the UK, in a dead swan found on the east coast of Scotland in late March. No further cases were found, and fears about the virus had been subsiding, according to AFP.In other recent avian flu developments:H5N1 was found in pet chickens in the northern Afghan province of Kapisa, the country’s fourth affected province, according to an Apr 25 AFP story. An Italian lab identified the virus, a spokesman for the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization told AFP. The virus had previously been found in Kabul, the capital, and in the eastern provinces of Nangarhar and Logar.Authorities on Bali in Indonesia said they had killed more than 400 ducks and chickens after random testing had revealed flu infections among them, according to an Apr 25 AFP report.The killing of more than 6,000 birds, mostly chickens, as part of control efforts in Burkina Faso has been completed, AFP reported today.In the Czech Republic, the government said testing at the European Union’s avian flu reference lab in Britain confirmed the presence of the H5N1 virus in 12 wild swans, AFP reported yesterday. Authorities said the country has had no cases in domestic birds.See also:Apr 27 WHO statement on case in Chinahttp://www.who.int/csr/don/2006_04_27/en/index.htmlIvory Coast report to the OIEhttp://www.oie.int/downld/AVIAN%20INFLUENZA/A2007_AI.php
India’s Jet Airways has announced the introduction of daily direct flights between Johannesburg and Mumbai from 14 April, using a state-of-the-art Airbus A330-200 aircraft on the route. He said that South Africa and the African region was an important market for the airline, and that they were confident of capturing and growing the market. The launch of the new route marks the first time that Jet Airways will fly to Africa. SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material ‘Strong linkages’ 3 March 2010 Karkassis said the airline was confident that it would soon emerge as one of the first-choice carriers on the popular route, given its vast domestic network in India and expanding international footprint. “Given the strong linkages between India and South Africa, and the large number of people of Indian origin living in and/or working in South Africa, we believe that there is untapped potential, and this new route promises to serve the needs of our discerning corporate and leisure flyers,” he said. The wide-bodied twin aisle cabin of the A330-200 will be configured in two classes, with 30 seats in business class and 190 seats in economy. Flight 9W 242 will depart Mumbai at 2.05am daily, arriving in Johannesburg at 7.35am. On the return leg, flight 9W 241 will depart Johannesburg at 11am daily, arriving in Mumbai at 11.30pm. “Jet Airways is delighted to enter Africa with its daily Mumbai-Johannesburg service,” Jet Airways CEO Nikos Kardassis said in a statement last month. “South Africa’s reputation as a leading tourist and business destination, and the fact that it will play host to the 2010 Fifa World Cup, also presents a huge opportunity for Jet Airways.”
World Cancer Day is on 4 February 2016, a global event that unites the world in the fight against cancer.(Image: Cricket South Africa)Brand South Africa reporterThe special day aims to save millions of preventable deaths each year by raising awareness of and education about the disease, pressing governments and individuals across the world to take action. South Africa has a long tradition of giving its support to the fight against cancer. And in recent years South African cricket has become a strong supporter of the cause.Cricket South Africa (CSA) and PinkDrive have urged cricket fans to support the team during their traditional Pink One Day International (ODI) against England at Wanderers, Johannesburg on 12 February.It’s the third time the Proteas have donned the pink for a good cause, and according to CSA, previous events have raised almost half-a-million rand for local cancer awareness programmes and non-profit organisations. The money is used to buy mobile mammography and gynaecology testing centres.This year, CSA hopes to raise R1 000 000 and fans can contribute by sending an SMS with the keyword PINKDRIVE to 40158.“Our support for PinkDrive is one of our foremost social programmes and underlines the fact that cricket has a broader responsibility within society,” said CSA chief executive Haroon Lorgat at the PinkDrive launch on 26 January. “The Pink ODI (will) mobilise cricket fans and the CSA family in support of a most worthy cause.”CSA, Bidvest, the Gauteng Cricket Board and sponsors, including Momentum and Castle Lager, will all contribute to the pink theme of the day, as well as raise funds. In addition to the Pink Proteas, billboards and branding around the Wanderers stadium will be decked out in pink. Merchandise, including hats and T- shirts, will be on sale for the day.As is tradition for the PinkDrive match, sponsors have offered players game incentives to add to the contributions.Momentum will donate R10 000 for every six hit into its family area spectators’ zone, and R100 000 for every boundary that hits a giant inflatable M placed in the arena.Castle wants to donate R10 000 for every catch of the day, while R2.50 from every beer sold on the day will also be donated to PinkDrive.Venue sponsors Bidvest will donate R1 000 every time the ball hits the (pink, naturally) branded boundary rope.Highlights from previous PinkDrive gamesJason Holder and AB de Villiers on the future of #cricket: https://t.co/zrlCqTItDG pic.twitter.com/h9PB2B3SiB— ESPN Caribbean (@ESPN_Caribbean) January 16, 2016In 2015, South Africa played in pink against the West Indies at Wanderers. It seemed as if the colour came packed with luck as AB de Villiers, Riley Rossouw and Hashim Amla all scored centuries to give South Africa a total of 439, surpassing the highest score in one-day international cricket. The Proteas held the previous record of 438 in the legendary game against Australia in 2006.Captain De Villiers led from the front, scoring the fastest century in one-day international history.The history of cricket and pinkInternational cricket’s association with cancer awareness began in 2005, with the formation of the McGrath Foundation. That fundraising and awareness initiative was started by former Australian fast bowler Glenn McGrath and his wife, Jane.Following Jane McGrath’s initial diagnosis and successful treatment for breast cancer, the couple wanted to use their status in the cricketing world and Australian society to draw attention to the need for cancer technology research and awareness for women, particularly young women, to have regular cancer checks.Initially a standard fundraising operation, the foundation’s pink-themed cricket events boosted its popularity, first in Australian domestic competitions and later in official games by the national side.Now in its tenth year, the foundation holds regular annual pink events, including the Sydney Pink Test, an iconic centrepiece of the charity held during Australia’s home Test match in January every year. In February, around World Cancer Day, there is a number of charity matches played featuring pink stumps. On 31 January 2016, Australia also played a Pink T20 in Sydney against the touring Indian team.Supporting Jane McGrath Day at the Australia v India T20 Cricket #janemcgrathfoundation #artisgroup pic.twitter.com/C3f9OSvMlB— Chris Greatrex (@chrisgreatrex) January 31, 2016Jane McGrath died in 2008, but her memory lives on in the pink initiatives held by cricketing nations around the world on World Cancer Day, including in South Africa.Source: News24Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.
The rights of disabled people are enshrined in South Africa’s Constitution, and legislation requires that public buildings and other places be accessible to everyone.Wheelchair Tennis is one of the fastest growing wheelchair sports in the world. South Africa is one of the global success stories in introducing the sport. (Image: WTSA)Brand South Africa ReporterSouth Africa has, in general, become much more aware of travellers with special requirements and most major attractions and facilities across the country can be counted on to accommodate visitors with disabilities.The rights of disabled people are enshrined in South Africa’s Constitution, and legislation requires that public buildings and other places be accessible to everyone.Visitor attractionsMajor attractions, airports, service stations, public buildings, game reserves and shopping centres have appropriate access, ablution facilities and parking.South African National Parks’ camps and visitor destinations, for example, provide ramped access into their main facilities. In many cases, accessible public ablution facilities are provided, including those at the camping sites. Many short trails also have Braille-interpretation plaques.There are also selected units in many of the camps that have been adapted for use by mobility impaired guests (people in wheelchairs, using crutches, with prams, with frailty or reduced energy levels).If you have specific accessibility requirements, your best bet is to request appropriate accommodation when you make a booking.Most visitor facilites at the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden are wheelchair friendly. However, it is set on a very steep slope and not all areas of the garden are accessible. There are parking bays for the physically challenged at the main gates.SA National Parks: www.sanparks.org.za, with detailed information for visitors with disabilitiesKirstenbosch National Botanical Garden: www.sanbi.orgMaking it simplerCompiled by an occupational therapist, Disabled Travel lists facilities, accommodation and restaurants that have been evaluated with travellers with special needs in mind. Especially useful are the photographs of the facilities’ bathrooms.You may want to join a custom tour with an operator such as Rolling SA. All accommodation venues on their tours have been inspected to ensure that they are accessible and disabled friendly.Flamingo Tours also specialise in tours for people with disabilities, especially blind or sight-impaired and deaf or hearing-impaired guests.Eco-access is a Section 21 company that has a database of accessible destinations, especially those that give people with disabilities access to nature.Getting aroundGuide dogs are allowed to travel in the cabin with their owner on most domestic flights, including all South African Airways flights. Be sure to confirm this when making your booking.Adapted rental cars, including those with hand controls, are available from some of the larger car rental companies, such as Avis, Budget and Imperial. Make sure you book in advance.The Gautrain Rapid Rail Link’s stations are fully accessible and every second train and feeder bus has special access for disabled passengers. Hearing and sight-impaired travellers are also catered for.You can hire wheelchairs and scooters from Mobility One in Johannesburg. They will deliver to the airport or your hotel.Read more: Driving in South AfricaAccommodationThe Tourism Grading Council of South Africa has integrated universal accessibility into its grading criteria. This aims to encourage compliance by the hospitality sector with international standards, especially those related to access, signage, and ease of general daily tasks.Tourism Grading Council: www.tourismgrading.co.zaMoneyNew South African banknotes are marked for tactile identification, although there are still some unmarked notes in circulation. The large geometric shapes on the front of the notes are meant as an aid for partially sighted.Money templates and coin selectors can be purchased from the South African National Council for the Blind.Useful linksSouth African National Council for the Blind: www.sancb.org.zaSouth African Guide Dogs Association: www.guidedog.org.zaDeaf Federation of South Africa: www.deafsa.co.zaQuadPara Association of South Africa: www.qasa.co.zaDepartment of Tourism: www.tourism.gov.zaWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.
In a stormy start to the Budget session, Opposition parties on Monday boycotted Governor Ch. Vidyasagar Rao’s joint address to both Houses of the legislature as a mark protest over his recent remarks praising and expressing pride over his association with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Mr. Rao had, earlier this month, termed RSS as one of the most secular and inclusive organisations and expressed pride to be part of the ‘Sanghatan’ and being part of the RSS. Expressing displeasure over the remarks, Opposition members stayed away from his address.“A Governor’s post is constitutional. We had doubts whether his speech was going to be in the interest of the State or the RSS. Hence, we decided to boycott it,” said Leader of Opposition in the Council, Dhananjay Munde.“His remarks from a constitutional post were unwarranted. The Governor supports the RSS. The promises made by the Governor have remained unfulfilled, so we have decided to boycott his speech,” said Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) State unit president Jayant Patil. Both Congress and NCP also staged a protest on the steps of the Vidhan Bhavan.‘Trillion dollar economy’In his address, Mr. Rao emphasised on the State government’s efforts to make Maharashtra a trillion dollar economy. “In order to achieve $1 trillion economy by 2025, my Government is preparing a new Industrial Policy with the objective of creating 60 lakh new employments and attracting an investment to the tune of ₹10 lakh crore,” he said. Mr. Rao claimed that due to several industry-friendly policies over the last four years and — events like Make in India Week and Magnetic Maharashtra Convergence Summit 2018 — the State has attracted ₹3.36 lakh crore Foreign Direct Investment. “Maharashtra continues to be the leading State in attracting FDI in India,” the Governor said. “Consequent to sub-sectoral policies announced by my Government, especially Information Technology Policy, Electronics Policy, Defence and Aerospace Policy, the State is expected to attract ₹14,500 crore investment with 1.15 lakh employment generation,” he said.Recounting the measures taken by the State government for the welfare of farmers, Mr. Rao said that the government is working on schemes to achieve the objective of doubling the farmers’ income. The Governor also announced that land acquisition for the Mumbai-Nagpur Samruddhi highway has been completed in a year and construction has begun. “This is the single largest project costing ₹55,335 crore that aims to connect the entire State from west to east,” he said.
England paceman James Anderson raised concerns about potentially’dangerous’ short-pitched bowling at the tourists’ tail-enders duringthe first Ashes Test, but his captain Joe Root said the lower orderwould just need to learn to ‘deal with it’.Anderson said he hadspoken to umpire Marais Erasmus as Australia’s fast bowlers launched afurious pace assault during the second innings as England were skittledfor 195 on the way to a resounding 10-wicket defeat at the Gabba.”I was batting with Jake (Ball) in the second innings and he got bowledtwo short balls from (Pat) Cummins that went over the shoulder,” theveteran quick told the BBC in the leadup to the second Test at AdelaideOval, starting Saturday.”There was a third very close and wasn’t given (a no-ball) and I questioned, ‘when does it get dangerous?'”I don’t know what constitutes dangerous bowling. It’s the umpire’s personal take on it.”Marais said he was happy with it at the time. It’s down to the umpires.”Umpires can penalise the bowler with no-balls and remove them from the attackif they judge their bowling as likely to cause injury based on thebatsman’s skill level.The dangers of fast bowling wereunderlined in 2014, when Australia batsman Phillip Hughes was struck inthe neck by a short ball and died in hospital two days later at the ageof 25.Australia used short-pitched bowling to rout England’stail throughout the 5-0 whitewash in 2013/14, a tactic skipper SteveSmith said his bowlers were using as a “blueprint” for the currentseries.advertisementAfter Australia wrapped up the win at the Gabba onMonday, Smith said England’s tail could expect more of the same in theremaining four Tests of the series.Anderson’s concerns were notshared by Root, despite a Mitchell Starc short ball smashing into thecaptain’s helmet during the second innings of the Gabba Test.”I think it’s Test cricket,” Root told reporters at Adelaide Oval on Friday.”And as a lower order player against an attack like that, you’ve got toexpect traffic round that area and you’ve got to make sure you deal with it.”Root’s helmet was damaged by the Starc blow, but he swapped into a new one and went on to score 51 after having a concussion Testbefore the start of play on day four.”They played to their strengths and you can’t knock that,” the skipper added.”I think we’ve got to make sure as a lower order we’re very prepared toface a lot of balls in that area and deal with it better than we did inthat first game, simple as that.”Anderson was preparing for another pace blitz at the tail in Adelaide, the first Ashes day-night Test.”We have to plan to get a barrage, which we are doing,” the 35-year-old said.
X 00:00 /18:27 Listen To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code: It’s time again for our weekly political roundup with analysis of national, state, and local political stories with an eye for how they might affect Houston and Texas.This week, we discuss everything from Texas House Speaker Joe Straus announcing he will not run for re-election, to what propositions Houston voters will decide on the November ballot, to Republican Senator Jeff Flake’s speech on the Senate floor Tuesday in which he denounced President Trump’s behavior.This week our panel includes: Jay Aiyer, political science professor at Texas Southern University and co-host of Houston Public Media’s Party Politics podcast; Mark Jones, political science fellow at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy; and Andrew Schneider, politics and government reporter for News 88.7. Share