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December 30, 2020 GMT

HURRICANES, VIRUS CAN’T STOP LOUISIANA COUPLE’S WEDDING

GRAND LAKE La. (AP) — Most couples might have wondered whether the forces of nature were against them after moving their wedding three times because of the pandemic and two hurricanes. But Emily Kitfield and Taylor Pascale were even more determined than ever to tie the knot. The Louisiana couple first moved their wedding because of the coronavirus pandemic. Then another time from Hurricane Laura in August and yet another time from Hurricane Delta in October. Finally, in a small ceremony Dec. 5 surrounded by close friends and family, Emily got to wear her lace-covered wedding dress and marry Taylor.

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LAID-OFF PRESCHOOL TEACHER BUYS $250,000 LOTTERY TICKET

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A laid-off preschool teacher in North Carolina has won a $250,000 prize from a scratch-off lotto ticket. WBTV reported Sunday that Joe Camp had been a preschool teacher in Charlotte for 20 years before he was laid off in September. He was able to find a job at a car dealership. He also bought two Gold Rush scratch-off tickets at a gas station in Charlotte. Camp said he fell to his knees at the gas pump after seeing the winnings. After taxes, Camp claimed $176,876. Camp said he plans to use his winnings to save for his daughter’s future and buy a home.

NORTH CAROLINA WANTS HELP DECIPHERING OLD, HAND-WRITTEN DOCUMENTS

MANTEO, N.C. (AP) — The State Archives of North Carolina is looking for help in transcribing hundreds of old records with handwriting that one expert described as “colonial chicken scratch.” The Virginian-Pilot reported last week that some of the documents are 300 years old. The state has put the records on a website called Transcribe NC. Volunteers can take a stab at deciphering what they say. The documents are written in an outdated style with large swirls and long tails. The site offers a tutorial on how to decode the writings. Many of the documents are court records from before the Revolutionary War. There are also Slave trade documents as well as treaties with Native Americans.

NORTH CAROLINA PUTS RINGLING BROS. TRAIN CARS UP FOR AUCTION

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The state of North Carolina is selling nine railroad cars that once belonged to Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus which they bought in hopes of refurbishing them for passenger service. The News & Observer of Raleigh reports the N.C. Department of Transportation is also selling seven other old rail cars it says it no longer needs. The department paid $383,000 for the circus cars shortly after Ringling Bros. held its last performance in 2017. Since buying those cars, the state has received two federal grants which will allow the department to buy six new locomotives and 26 new passenger cars, meaning they won’t need the circus cars.

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YOUNG SEA LION RECOVERS FROM SHARK BITE, RETURNS TO OCEAN

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - A feisty young sea lion is back in the Northern California wild after five weeks of rehabilitation to treat a severe shark bite, domoic acid poisoning and malnutrition. The Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito said Monday that it had successfully released Jenya last week at Rodeo Beach in the Marin Headlands. The male sea lion was rescued from San Francisco’s Aquatic Park by Fisherman’s Wharf in November after the center received reports of a lethargic sea lion with a large left shoulder wound. The Marine Mammal Center has cared for more than 440 seals and sea lions this year.