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first_imgFootball team of Bosnia and Herzegovina had their last training last night on “Ernst Happel” stadium before today’s friendly match against Austria scheduled for 20:30 hours in Vienna.Baždarević announced on the press conference that only newly recovered Senad Lulić will be missing the game, but when Baždarević closed the training after the introductory 15 minutes, it became more likely that Sejad Salihovic will miss the match in Vienna as well, reported the Anadolia reporter.Earlier today, the coaching staff allowed reserve goalkeeper Ibrahim Šehić to leave the preparations due to the important club obligations.Selector did not want to reveal the final line upagainst the Austrians. The final line up for this match will be decided definitely tomorrow before the match against a high quality opponent.After Saturday’s victory in Andorra (3: 0), in the fifth round of qualifying for EURO 2016 atmosphere among B&H team players is very good, and they hope that in this match against much stronger Austria they will play well and record a positive result. (Source: faktor.ba)last_img read more

first_imgThe selection of B&H means they will play one of the deciding matches in the qualifications for the Euro 2016 against Belgium in Brussels, on September 3rd 2015. The great interest of BH fans in the country and abroad, who want to attend this match and help the Dragons to win a favorable result, is already evident.Following an agreement by the Football Federation of B&H and the Football Association of Belgium, the following rules regarding the purchase of tickets for the aforementioned match have been established:*3.800 tickets are reserved for the fans of B&H. The price of one ticket is 30 Euros.*The FA of Belgium will not be responsible for the sale of tickets to B&H fans; therefore the FF of B&H is authorized and responsible for the sales.*Interested individuals and organized groups (associations of fans, agencies, companies etc.) may apply for the appropriate number of tickets until July 31st 2015 at the latest, via the email address ticketing_belgium_bih@nsbih.ba*Individuals may apply for a maximum of five tickets, by submitting a photocopy of an identification document (passport) and a list of fans/travelers.*An organized group may apply for more than five tickets, given that a photocopy of an identification document (passport) of the leader of the group and a list of all the fans/travelers including their date of birth, passport number and place of residence, as well as information on the mode of traveling and their eventual accommodation in Belgium, has been submitted.*The relevant service of the FF of B&H will consider all the applications until August 10th 2015, when the ticket sales begin.In accordance with the approved applications, ticket sales will be confirmed directly at the FF of B&H box office, or by delivery to the address, with compensation of the postal costs on the account of the applicant. The FF of B&H will consider the possibility of selling the tickets in Brussels as well, at the day of the match, reports Goal.com.(Source: novovrijeme.ba)last_img read more

first_imgFacebook108Tweet0Pin0Submitted by LOTT Clean Water Alliance / WET Science Center Olympia community members are invited to come learn about local sea level rise response planning, Tuesday, December 11, 2018, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. at LOTT Clean Water Alliance (500 Adams St NE, Olympia). At 6:00 p.m., visit information stations and ask questions of project staff. At 6:15 p.m., hear presentations about the planning effort, potential adaptation strategies, and next steps.Photo courtesy: LOTT Clean Water Alliance / WET Science CenterThose unable to attend the meeting can still review the Draft Plan at olympiawa.gov/slr beginning December 10, and provide written comments through January 25. Email searise@ci.olympia.wa.us to send comments on the Draft Plan or request a sea level rise presentation for your organization. Sign up at olympiawa.gov/subscribe for the sea level rise e-newsletter.Flooding VulnerabilityDowntown Olympia has always been vulnerable to flooding. High water levels in Capitol Lake and high tides in Budd Inlet can combine to cause water to overtop the shoreline and spill into downtown streets and low-lying areas. Even with minimal amounts of sea level rise, the risk to downtown’s streets and buildings and the many community services will increase. Downtown flooding is anticipated to become more frequent and severe in the future. The Sea Level Rise Response Plan provides a broad strategy for adapting to rising sea levels in both the near and long-term.Downtown Olympia serves as the social, cultural, historical, and economic core of the city. The 450-acre downtown area contains vital infrastructure such as Olympia City Hall, the Budd Inlet Treatment Plant, the Port of Olympia marine terminal, and the emergency vehicle corridors between west and east Olympia. The Olympia Farmers Market, Heritage Park, and Percival Landing are important cultural and recreational places to many residents. Our waterfront and its link to Puget Sound are highly valued by our community and need to be protected. Taking steps to protect downtown from sea level rise can help avoid damage and service disruptions and reduce costs to our community in the long-term.Sea Level Rise Response Plan  Olympia Sea Level Rise Response Plan Project Area. Photo courtesy: LOTT Clean Water Alliance / WET Science CenterCity of Olympia, LOTT Clean Water Alliance, and Port of Olympia have been working together, with help from consulting firm AECOM Technical Services Inc., since May of 2017 to create the response plan to protect downtown Olympia from the impacts of sea level rise.The Sea Level Rise Response Plan is based on the high estimate of sea level rise: 25 inches by mid-century and 68 inches by end of century. This projection takes into account that Olympia is sinking 1 to 2 millimeters per year.The more likely scenario projects sea levels rising by 13 inches by mid-century and 36 inches by the end of the century. The future rate of sea level rise will depend on whether we reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and how much.How Olympia FloodsNot all areas of downtown will be impacted by rising seas in the same way or at the same time. The low lying areas around Capitol Lake are already most vulnerable to flooding, followed by portions of the Budd Inlet shoreline north of Percival Landing and along the isthmus.Downtown Olympia in general is affected by high tides, high Deschutes River flows, and combinations of the two. In either event, if water levels are high enough they can flow back through the stormwater drainage system and cause flooding in areas not directly adjacent to the shoreline. Overland flooding can also increase flows to the Budd Inlet Treatment Plant, potentially stressing its capacity for treating wastewater. Portions of the Port property may also be subject to more frequent flooding as sea levels rise in the future.Photo courtesy: LOTT Clean Water Alliance / WET Science CenterFour Focus AreasThe Plan is divided into four focus areas: Capitol Lake / Lower Deschutes Watershed, Percival Landing and Isthmus, Budd Inlet Treatment Plant and Combined Sewer System, and Port of Olympia Peninsula. The Plan addresses landscape, flood dynamics, and flooding vulnerabilities for each focus area. Adaptation strategies have been identified to address sea level rise for each area. These strategies can be adapted over time based on changing conditions. Come to the December 11 meeting or visit City of Olympia’s Sea Level Rise Website to learn more.We Can Address Our Rising ChallengeOur downtown landscape will continue to change in the decades ahead, such as raising of the shoreline and buildings, future development, and land use changes. Sea level rise will be one of the drivers of change, but not the only driver. The Sea Level Rise Response Plan illustrates how places like the Percival Landing boardwalk, Heritage Park, and the Billy Frank Jr. Trail could be enhanced to help provide flood protection. As a community, we can protect Olympia’s unique character, essential services, and critical infrastructure. Together we can address our rising challenge.last_img read more

first_imgInjury list reportThe list of players on the Leafs injury continues to be very long for a team wanting to make a long trek into the post season.A quick scan of the defence sees Dash Thompson questionable while Aigne McGeady-Bruce and Max Daerendinger are both out for the series.Daerendinger was injured during Friday loss to Spokane Braves.Forward Blair Andrews is day-to-day while defenceman Smith and forward Eamonn Miller are both expected back in the lineup Tuesday.Major Midgets to the rescueTo fill out the Leafs lineup, DiBella has put in a call to Kootenay Ice coach Brian Jones to ask for the services of defencemen Brendan Mckay and Kaleb Comishin and forward Riley Swiscoski.Williams to start Game oneDiBella is happy with the play of netminder Josh Williams to give the former Alberta Junior Hockey goalie the start in Game one.Williams came to the Leafs at the January roster deadline from Bonnyville Pontiacs.Williams, 18, was injured for most of the latter part of the season, playing in only three games — two against Creston and Spokane the last week of the season.DiBella said no decision has been made on which goalie — Williams or Patrick Ostermann — would start Game three. Following the decision to forfeit their final game of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League 2015-16 regular season Sunday against Grand Forks, the Nelson Leafs now turn to face a humungous task as the Heritage City franchise prepares to face the Beaver Valley Nitehawks in the first round of the Murdoch Division playoffs.The banged-up Leafs face a Broad-Street-Bully-like Nitehawk team that won the season series against the Green and White, finishing 33 points ahead of the fourth-place club with a 34-11-4-0-3 mark.Still the Leafs refuse to back down heading into Game one of the best-of-seven series that begins Tuesday in Fruitvale.“We have to use our team speed to chip pucks past them and rely on the refereeing to look after the clutching and grabbing and late hits,” said Leaf coach Mario DiBella on the eve of the series.Of course it’s been well documented the Leafs plight over the past few weeks icing a lineup.Playing a schedule down the stretch that saw the team play eight games in 15 days in February, the Leafs saw player after the player spend time with the training staff.However, the coaching staff is optimistic the Leafs can give the Nitehawks a run provided key players return to the lineup.“I think if we get these (injured) players back in the lineup, some who are impact players who might take a game to shake out the cobwebs, but I know this team is a very competitive group that are excited about starting the playoff run,” DiBella explained.Game two of the series goes Wednesday in Fruitvale with the series shifting back to Nelson Friday and Saturday for games three and four at the NDCC Arena.last_img read more

first_imgHave you always played as a midfielder?At first, he played as a second striker or playmaker. But we soon made him a midfielder, which I think is the position in which Dani has always performed best. He started to change because he was having trouble doing that defensive work and seemed to be doing it at a slower pace. Ángel López, the former Contra coach in Romania and many other places, also helped him a lot. He also worked with Míchel. We had him as a physical trainer one day a week and that served Parejo a lot when he made the leap to Madrid.He was talking about his rhythm. There are people who have confused that with apathy …Honestly, if there is anyone who thinks that, it is that they have not had much knowledge of the game. Each one has its characteristics. Parejo always stood out for making his team play and for that cold blood. That has taken him to the highest level.Even, the second starting from the right in the bottom row, with the Coslada fry. Go live in Coslada …You can not even imagine. It was a constant pilgrimage of scouts and reps every time we played. That was atypical and I have never seen it again. That follow-up they did was not normal. Word of what Parejo was doing spread and many people came to see us. I remember there were scouts who called me at home the night before a game to see if I was going to put him in eleven or not to come the next day to see him.Why Madrid?He bet heavily on him. He went ahead of everyone. He spoke to his father formally and Dani opted for Madrid. It was not easy because I have a very good relationship with his father and he had a lot of representative cards, from all possible agencies. I insist, I have not seen a boom like that with Parejo. Did he have a goal as a child?Yes. He was always good at fouls and the stopped ball, in addition to shooting from outside the area. Almost all the balls that fell in the vicinity of the area ended in a goal.Did he rehearse a lot?He was sick with soccer. He was pissed off after training if you didn’t stay rehearsing penalties and fouls. We had to call his attention to go to the locker room because he always stayed with the doorman.Did you already have personality?A lot, like now. I have always said that he was the defender of lost causes. He had a very strong personality and was very aware of his peers. That leadership has led him to the elite.What exhibition do you remember?We beat Atlético, who was coached by Sabas. He made an incredible match. He dominated the game as he wanted and Atleti was unable to take the ball from him.After leaving Coslada, did you track him down?Yes. Madrid did well. In addition, the support given by Di Stéfano was definitive. He said he was the greatest talent La Fábrica had given in recent years. That put him even more in the window.Even, seated and the third from the left, with the Coslada cadet. From what Parejo says, not much has changed in terms of football …No. It has the same characteristics as then. The last time I saw him at Mestalla, he caught my attention. It was against Atlético last season. Marcelino was the coach and I saw him drop to the ground twice to steal a ball and he seemed to me a more sacrificed player. But that change came in handy and Marcelino brought out the best. I thought I had lost some conditions to win in others, but the talent was still there. Then, I saw that trot so peculiar that it has always had.At first it cost …It is like Curro Romero. There are people who find it difficult to assimilate their football.In Valencia its best version has been seen …It takes many years to the highest level. I’m glad because Valencia has always been my second team. My mother was Valencian and now, with Dani there, I have a special affection for that club.Are you still in contact with Parejo?Yes. He is a charming boy. I have his shirts. I have gone to see him several times in Valencia and whenever we have needed his help he has been there. In fact, we recently asked him for a video for the kids and he showed a lot of predisposition. I suppose that Dani will also be grateful because in his day we bet on him being a modest club. Where do we start?Well, I will tell him that I trained Dani for two years and he always made a difference, in fry and cadet. At Coslada, we bet on it and we upgraded it. He always played with people older than him and it never showed. It caught everyone’s attention. He had a tremendous following. Sevilla, Liverpool, Atlético, Madrid came to see him … Dani was a confessed Atlético.last_img read more

first_imgOSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson Meralco ‘never the same’ after Almazan injury in PBA Finals LATEST STORIES MOST READ Jokic’s big night helps Nuggets hold off Mavericks Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Redemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie Thompson Brian Heruela arrival bolsters Phoenix backcourt, defense Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. “ESPN has a way to solve [the main event issue], so it will be very interesting when we announce it.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ’a duplicitous move’ – Lacson The availability of the venue, however, is still questionable with Las Vegas’ NHL team the Golden Knights could be using the arena for the NHL playoffs, which is set to begin on April 11. The Knights are currently the top squad in their division.READ: Pacquiao says in talks to fight Lomachenko FEATURED STORIESSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folk“Unless they can get some clearance from the league, we can’t do it in Las Vegas because none of the other arenas are available and we would have to do it somewhere else,” Arum said.If there won’t be any particular deal or agreement to settle the impending conflict made, the bout could staged at Madison Square Garden in New York on April 14. Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina Apart from the location, Arum is still in search for the Filipino champion’s next opponent.Pacquiao (59-7-2, 38 KOs) hasn’t fought since July last year when he suffered a controversial upset to Jeff Horn in Brisbane, Australia.“We’re working on an opponent. Don’t want to be too premature about that, but we’re working on it as we speak. Pacquiao seems like he wants to come back, so we’re trying to get that finalized,” he said.Pacquiao, though, told Agence France-Presse that his camp is in talks to set up a fight with world champion Vasyl Lomachenko, but they are still negotiating on the weight.As far as who gets to be in the main event, Arum said ESPN would be the one to deal with it.ADVERTISEMENT Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netManny Pacquiao’s ring return is imminent but there are still some issues yet to be resolved.In an interview with the Las Vegas Review Journal, Top Rank chief Bob Arum said he is looking at inserting Pacquiao into the same card as the Terence Crawford and Jeff Horn title fight on April 21 possibly at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas which will be televised by ESPN.ADVERTISEMENT Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Scottie Thompson also worthy of Finals MVP, thinks Cone View commentslast_img read more

The Wanderings of a Child Soldier

January 14, 2020 | jipzttuh | No Comments

first_img(An excerpt from the novel August 1990)By Saah MillimonoChapter Thirty-five“I wan ten pee,” he said, handing his five-dollar bill to the small boy whose buttocks, like two black eyes, peeped out of the back of his trousers.“Ten?” the boy said. The boy had a flat nose and a few of his teeth were rotting away.Kollie nodded.The boys playing marbles had then all regrouped, following the game before. Now they were standing at the side from which they would all throw their marbles. It would determine who would lead the next match from the outset.The boy put his hand into his trousers pocket, heavy and sagging, the marbles making ‘clock-clock’ sounds like a bag full of empty bottles. Then he took out a handful. A colorful pile shimmered in his palm.A few yards away, sitting on their hunches in a semicircle, five or six men played a game of dice. Each held a handful of crumpled and soiled five-dollar notes which were as dirty and shabby as the men themselves. From somewhere across the market came the sound of loud reggae music, reminding Kollie of the loud volume with which he and the other fighters would play music in NPFL territory. He turned and looked across the market, wondering from where the music came. Then he saw an INPFL fighter. The fighter came up the dusty path, holding with one hand a music box and in the other the strap of the AK-47 rifle slung over one shoulder. He looked to be about nineteen years of age. He walked with a bouncing gait, nodding his head in time with the beat of the music, and looked as though he had turned all the suffering and carnage of the war into one long and enduring song, pure and sacred. Then a military transport truck pulled up by the roadside. At once voices could be heard yelling and screaming, followed by the sound of feet and the sight of people running about the market, and in opposite directions. Kollie turned and looked around him. Only then did he realize that the boys with whom he had been about to play had all disappeared. Even the one to whom he had given his five-dollar bill could no longer be seen. He turned to look back across the market. He caught a glimpse of men dressed in army uniforms and watched as they chased and went after the crowd.Then suddenly he saw one of the soldiers, holding in one hand a pair of handcuffs, running towards him. There was no one else in front of the video club. Kollie turned to look behind him. A man, who could have been the proprietor of the video club and who also must have seen the approaching soldier, was in the act of shutting the entrance. Kollie took a deep breath and ran towards him.The man cursed and tried to grab him as Kollie struck against him and almost knocked him off his feet. But Kollie shoved himself through the narrow space between the man and the door, just in time for the man to slam it shut behind him.The room was dark except for the dim glow of light that emitted from the video screen and its moving pictures. It took Kollie almost a whole minute to adjust his eyes to the darkness. Then he saw about a hundred people or so, each with his face turned towards the video screen, sitting on low wooden benches on the floor in front of him. From the video screen came the sound of gunfire. Then a car caught fire and burst into flames.A hand grabbed Kollie by the back of the collar. He turned. His eyes opened wide in fear, dreading to meet the soldier he had seen outside with the handcuffs. But it was a young man who had been sitting on a tall stool just behind him.“Where yor money, or you thin people cam here to watch free show?” the young man said.Kollie opened his mouth, but words failed him. How he had come to be in the video club or whether he was there at all, had happened so suddenly he still could not believe it.“Leave the pekin,” said a voice. “INPFL rebels almost caught him but he was lucky.”The young man released his hold on Kollie’s collar and burst out laughing. Standing next to him was an older man that Kollie recognized to be the man who had been about to shut the entrance when he pushed him. He was staring at Kollie and stood with arms akimbo. Kollie lowered his eyes.From outside and just behind the video club came the drone of a portable generator, the occasional sound of cars as they drove past on the tarred road, and voices, clear or indistinct, from the market.“Go sit down pekin,” the man said.“Thank you,” Kollie said, and sighed.He found one of the nearest benches and sat down, sandwiched between a small boy and a fat man with his belly dangling in front of him. The fat man had removed his shirt and now used it to fan himself. The room was hot and airless, like an oven. It smelled of sweat and unwashed bodies. On the still air Kollie caught a whiff of exhaust fumes from the generator outside. He turned to look at the walls around him. He noticed five or six holes, each no bigger than a man’s fist, punched into the upper most part of the wall on his left. So that was the window? But how could anybody expect to let in fresh air with a makeshift window like that, he wondered, and felt as though he were being strangled. Wiping his forehead with the back of his hand and feeling sweat streamed all over his body, Kollie sighed and turned to watch the movie.But then the video screen went black, plunging the room into complete darkness. After a series of irregular spluttering and coughing, the generator had broken down and gone silent, like a corpse.Immediately there were loud and angry voices; everybody started talking almost at once. The video club attendant jumped down from the stool and ran out of the room, the proprietor close behind him.“That rotten generator,” somebody shouted at the top of his voice. “It waits just when you’re enjoying the movie. Then it breaks down and when they go fix it, they tell you go come back tomorrow. I swear, if I wuh na in my right mind, I will take that thin an break it now.”Everybody burst out laughing.“That guy who owns this video club must be playing tricks with the generator,” someone else said. “Has anyone noticed how when you have seen the first and second shows, the generator breaks down and you don’t get to watch the last show? That way the video club owner saves up fuel for tomorrow. And you can’t force him to give back your money because you have already seen two shows.”“But I can keep my ticket and come back tomorrow to watch the last show,” said someone else.“Yes, and that might be what he will tell you,” said the voice that had spoken first. “But most of us, like myself, wouldn’t want to come back tomorrow for just one show business. And what if the ticket gets missing or there’s no money to pay for the second and third shows?”“I thin de thin you mor do when you cam to dis video club,” said someone else, “is keep yor ticket and pay after you fini watchin all de show.”“If I were the owner of the video club,” said another person, “you could do that only over my dead body, because some people would watch the shows and not want to pay.”Everybody laughed.And then, as though it were suffering from tuberculosis, the generator coughed loudly two times and starting again. The light came back on; the video screen sprung to life; the room burst into applause.It took about an hour and a half to complete the third and final movie. Then the crowd poured out into the yard, pushing and shoving to get through the doorway. They were all sweating profusely, men as well as women and small boys. A few of the men had stripped themselves to the waist and stood with their bodies pouring with sweat. Immediately the clean, fresh air, which they could all have free of charge, seemed to hit them in the nostrils like a sledgehammer. Indeed, their faces looked bathed with relief and satisfaction. About the three movies, especially ‘Diabolo’, there was still much talk and excitement; those who had not seen the movies now stood by to listen. On the wall next to the entrance of the video club the proprietor and his attendant where putting a few movie posters, getting ready for midnight movies.Sitting and watching that movie had made Kollie oblivious of the fact he had lost his five-dollar note. But as he came back out of the video club he thought of it again and became bitter with the anger and frustration he had felt before. Worse still, he was feeling hungry and tired. Not that he cared much about food or fatigue. If there was anything the NPFL had taught him, it was the ability to embrace hardship and to endure as calmly as possible. But whereas in NPFL territory he had a gun and a few fighters who would watch his back, here he did not know anybody. Besides, with suspected NPFL fighters being lynched or shot and killed every other day, he felt exposed and vulnerable. Perhaps it was this helplessness that made him to think of such small things like food and how tired he felt. He sighed and looked around him at the crowd gathered in front of the video club, still hoping to spy the small boy who had run off with his money. But the boy was not to be seen anywhere nor any of the others he had found playing marbles. Well, he would keep a look out for him, he decided.Then he thought about the incident in the market, the INPFL rebel fighters he had seen brandishing their weapons, especially the one with the handcuffs, and how everybody had suddenly started running in different directions.“Hello poppay,” he said then to a man standing just nearby.“Hello pekin,” the man said. He looked to be about fifty years old or so. He was dressed in a blue pair of oversized trousers, an ill-fitting khaki shirt, and old slippers that almost had no soles. But he wore a pair of spectacles and three or four BIC pens in his breast pocket which rather seemed to give him a respectable air, like a minister, but one without decent clothing.“Why people in de market wuh runnin for, and why de INPFL fighters dem wanted to catch dem?” he asked.“They were looking to recruit people,” the man said, and spat.“But there wuh women and small children,” Kollie said.“They don’t care,” The man said, and shrugged his shoulders. “The men and boys they take to fight. The women they use as cooks and slaves until they’re pregnant and thrown out of the INPFL base by the rebels. They don’t have much use for old men like me. But once those rebels beat me up here as though I was a small boy, and they did not even look at my grey hair. Imagine! Me, once a University of Oxford professor!”The man spoke bitterly and looked around some more, as though in search of an outlet to unleash his anger and disappointment. Then he sucked his teeth and spat again.Kollie had seen and perhaps committed similar atrocities in the NPFL. It was all very well to be told that the same things were being done here by INPFL rebels. It would make being covert and conducting himself with particular care all the more important. But there was something about this man that made him wary and uneasy, especially his anger and the way he wore those pens as if to remind each and everybody of who he was and how he would stop at nothing in order to feel placated. Perhaps he ought not to even be speaking with him, thought Kollie, let alone in such an obvious place. He didn’t know him. Already people were on the lookout for suspected NPFL rebels, a circumstance which, unfortunately, happened to be his misfortune. He turned, bowed his head just low enough to see in front of him, and hurried away from the old man.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

first_imgThe RCMP is issuing an urgent call to all motorists to slow down or face the closure of the Alaska Highway. Cst. Jackelynn Passarell of the Fort St. John RCMP says three vehicle accidents have occurred in the last hour alone. [asset|aid=538|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=59d7e2469c2e0949780e3c3a68b3bc43-Jackey-1_1_Pub.mp3] – Advertisement –last_img

first_imgVALENCIA – They talk about the year that torrents of rain turned the posh Valencia Country Club greens to mush. And then there was the year of the whipping winds, and the year with the biting chill in the air. But checking a 15-day forecast that calls for perfect golf weather, this year the AT&T Champions Classic will be about the golf, said Peter De Young, director of the tournament that opens Monday at Valencia and stars professional golfers 50 and older. “Everyone keeps asking me, `What’s the weather?”‘ De Young said. “It looks like a fantastic forecast – after the last couple of years I was beginning to think we were snakebitten. I’ve got a long-range forecast that looks absolutely fantastic.” Debuting at the Champions Classic is Mark O’Meara, 16-time winner on the PGA Tour, who hit the Big 5-0 in January. Other events include Tuesday’s Pro-Junior Champions Challenge – a six-hole exhibition at 3 p.m. Tuesday – and the Classic Gala on Wednesday night at the Hyatt Valencia. Professional play begins Friday morning and runs through Sunday afternoon. The pros love coming to Valencia, in part, because host Hyatt Valencia backs up to the course and its centrally located to restaurants, De Young said. A favorite is Salt Creek Grill – but some come looking for that California treasure, In-N-Out. “I think the course really draws the players and more than the people know, the area draws the players,” he said. “If you just tell them we’re playing in Los Angeles, they think huge metro area, lots of traffic, lots of this and a lot of that. “When you say Valencia, they have their favorite restaurants, hotels. It doesn’t take much to please them. On the other hand, it doesn’t take much to really turn them off. “The city just sets it up so good for us.” Valencia is within the city of Santa Clarita, and the golf tour draws high-profile national attention as well as crowds that spend plenty of money in town. Last year’s tourney drew 40,000 visitors from as far away as Europe and Canada, said Jason Crawford, Santa Clarita’s film and tourism administrator. The 2006 Classic netted $7 million in local revenue – the city’s share came from sales and hotel taxes. “We’re thrilled they’re back and, like everyone, we’re just keeping an eye on the weather,” Crawford said. The city, he said, also is working to get visitors to stay a few extra days by billing the area as home of Six Flags Magic Mountain and several spas. The players often bring their families to the Classic and private parties are scheduled at the Hyatt, including a comedy night this year with Sinbad and a concert featuring singer Kenny Loggins. The tournament also will become a community affair, with scores of local volunteers helping out, local residents golfing with the celebs and thousands showing up to watch the pros play on one of the state’s finest courses. Spectators park at College of the Canyons and will be shuttled to the Tourney Road course. “The golf course is pretty special – it’s in the best shape I’ve ever seen it,” Crawford said. “The course should take center stage. Last year it didn’t get the mention that was due because last year was very, very cold. We were handing out ski hats to the players.” Golf Digest named the Valencia Country Club course one of the top 25 in California. This is the fifth year the club has hosted the Classic, and negotiations are continuing for a new five-year contract. pat.aidem@dailynews.com (661) 257-5251 Champions Tour The AT&T Champions Classic opens Monday. Tickets range from $15.90 for a day to $53 for a weeklong pass. Information is available by calling (661) 260-1897 or on the tournament Web site at attchampionsclassic.com. The Web site also offers a complete schedule of events as well as advance-ticket purchases. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! O’Meara helped design the nearby Valencia Tournament Players Club, a treacherous course just across Interstate 5 from the country club. “Every year there’s another big player,” De Young said. “It’s Mark O’Meara this year, one of the huge names in golf. He just turned 50; he said he wouldn’t miss it.” Tom Kite will defend his 2006 championship, heading a field of close to 80 “senior” golf pros. The purse is $1.4 million, with the winner slated to take home $240,000. Other big names include Ben Crenshaw, Hale Irwin, Jerry Pate, Fuzzy Zoeller, Loren Roberts and Jay Haas. The real winner may be Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital, the tournament’s designated charity. The hospital was awarded $120,000 last year in proceeds from the pro-am. last_img