Fantastic Views for Fireworks throughout the Blue Ridge

first_imgThis Independence Day, why not mix it up a little and travel to a breathtaking mountain backdrop for an amazing firework display? To get you started, here are some possibilities throughout the Blue Ridge that are sure to impress this 4th of July.Smith Mountain Lake in Virginia is a spot favored for its scenic location along with its 500 miles of shoreline and it’s a wonderful spot to be for the annual fireworks show with all donation proceeds going to a local volunteer fire company. While many choose to view the show from Parkway Marina on land, the lake fills from shore to shore with the green, red, and white navigation lights from thousands of boats all there for the spectacular fireworks. If you are up for the adventure, be sure to take your boat toward the marina at the gap of Smith Mountain plenty early to get a good spot and because much of the lake’s main channel becomes a no wake zone considering the heavy traffic and dark conditions to be driving back in. The firework show will be held on Sunday, July 2nd complete with a live concert, kids zone, and carousel rides.Chattanooga, Tennessee‘s “Pops on the River” firework show is ideal for an evening on the grass with a few lawn chairs and a cooler. Taking place in Coolidge Park of downtown Chattanooga, this free Independence Day event comes with an outdoor concert and fireworks beginning around 9:45 p.m. right on the Tennessee River. With popular tourist destinations of Lookout Mountain and downtown must sees like the Tennessee Aquarium, Chattanooga would make for a beautiful mountain vacation weekend this Fourth of July weekend.Throwing a state park into the mix along with a 21st century twist on tradition is the “Fantastic Fourth Celebration” at Stone Mountain just northeast of Atlanta, Georgia. The celebration includes a laser show, music, fire effects, and the grand finale of a jaw-dropping fireworks display. The event lasts from July 1-4 with a parking fee of $15/day and attractions are open from 10:30 a.m.- 8 p.m. everyday. Each night, the same laser and fireworks show will happen starting at 9:30 p.m. If you’ve never experienced July 4th at Stone Mountain, this year is sure to be one of the best yet as it is the 50th anniversary of the celebration in Stone Mountain State Park.Finishing off this list of highlight fireworks show throughout the Blue Ridge is a July 4th experience that adds an element of outdoor recreation. For those wanting an adventurous holiday, you can opt to hike your way to the fireworks on a moderate 1.5 mile trail to the peak of Sunset Mountain starting at 6 p.m. and departing from the Swannanoa Valley Museum. From there, guests will enjoy a traditional watermelon cutting, the sun setting, and then the fireworks that illuminate the sky over the town of Black Mountain, North Carolina. For a cost of $50 for nonmembers and $35 for members of the museum, the hike will be led by individuals who will share the history and vintage photographs of the valley. Hikers are encouraged to bring a picnic, water, folding chairs, cameras, and flashlights. If this seems like a unique experience you’d like to try be sure to sign up and pay for your trip fee online.The Blue Ridge Mountains are home to an endless amount of spectacular Fourth of July events, views, and activities to make this year’s celebration one to remember.last_img read more

Klopp says Man Utd-Liverpool clash is ‘biggest game’

first_imgLondon, United Kingdom | AFP | Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp says Saturday’s Premier League clash against Manchester United is “the biggest game I can imagine”, with the bitter rivals locked in a battle for second place.Klopp’s team, in third, are just two points behind Jose Mourinho’s side but 18 adrift of runaway leaders Manchester City, meaning the title is out of the question barring a calamity for City.However, Klopp’s men know a victory at Old Trafford will take them above United.“It’s the biggest game I can imagine,” said Klopp. “I’m looking forward to it. We need to be at 100 percent, if not even a few more (percent).”Asked how he would feel about Mourinho “parking the bus” and setting his side up defensively to counter Liverpool’s attacking trio of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino, the German said he would never use the phrase. “I have absolutely no problem with defending. It’s all about winning,” he said.“When United attack I hope all my players are involved in defending. If someone says that is ‘parking the bus’ I have no problem with that.”Full-back Nathaniel Clyne is close to a return to action having not yet featured this season due to a back problem.He may have to wait longer for his chance, though, after Klopp praised the performances of Joe Gomez and Trent Alexander-Arnold in Clyne’s absence.Fellow full-back Andy Robertson is also available while Klopp added that Jordan Henderson “looked OK yesterday” after a dead leg and Georginio Wijnaldum is on his way back from illness.Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

Middletown’s Phil Murphy Runs For Governor

first_imgDemocrat To Focus On EconomyBy John BurtonMIDDLETOWN – It’s about a year-and-a-half away before New Jersey residents cast a vote for their next governor and probably quite a while before voters start thinking seriously about that election. But it isn’t too early to campaign and announce one’s candidacy, believes Monmouth County’s own Philip D. Murphy, who has thrown his hat into that ring.Businessman and former U.S. ambassador to Germany, Murphy, 58, a Middletown resident, and Democrat, who at the time of his announcement last week was the first declared Democratic candidate for the 2017 gubernatorial contest, a race to determine who will succeed two-term Republican Chris Christie.Despite the fact that the race is a long way away–and probably most people, if they’re thinking about politics at all, have their attention fixed on the presidential race escapades—Murphy and his family decided it was the opportune time to break out of the starting gate.“If we can in a small way get to a better debate, get the state back on its feet sooner rather than later,” Murphy said in an interview with The Two River Times this week about his announcement, “I want to be part of that.”Murphy has had a successful career in business, having worked for about 20 years for Goldman Sachs multinational investment banking firm, holding a number of positions with the company. Before ending his full-time career with the company’s management in 2003, Murphy headed up the company’s Frankfurt, Germany, operations as well as other high-placed spots level positions. He has also been active on a number of philanthropic and civic fronts, establishing with his wife, Tammy, a teen helpline called 2nd Floor, for 180 Turning Lives Around, an organization that assists victims of domestic and sexual violence and their families, and working with other charitable organizations over the years; Murphy had been for a period the organization’s board president. He has also co-chaired Renewing Our Schools, Securing Our Future, a national task force studying public education; and Richard Codey, while serving as acting governor in 2005, selected Murphy to head up a task force looking at public service pensions and health benefits.Murphy hasn’t held elected office but has dabbled in national politics. He served as national finance chair for the Democratic National Committee under then-chairman Howard Dean (who, Murphy said, he considers a friend) from 2006 to 2009. According to his bio provided by the campaign, Murphy raised in the neighborhood of $300 million over that period for the national political party.Following his tenure with the DNC, President Barack Obama nominated Murphy to be the Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, and with the U.S. Senate’s approval, Murphy served in that posting from 2009 until 2013.Going forward with the campaign Murphy said, “The economy is ‘job one’ in this state.”He pointed out New Jersey’s unemployment rate remains high compared to the rest of the region (and higher as the national percentage); employment hasn’t recouped yet from 2007, prior to the “Great Recession”; New Jersey has one of the highest percentage of long term unemployed (more than six months) of any state; and, Murphy said, we lead the nation in “zombie foreclosures”—where homeowners have walked away from their properties.“Those are just the facts. I wish they weren’t but they are,” he said.With a background in the private sector, in international economies, of “What works, what doesn’t,” as well as an appreciation for the public sector’s ability, Murphy maintained he has the right stuff to create jobs and right the New Jersey ship after eight years of Christie.The next governor, Murphy is convinced, needs to be “prepared to make decisions based upon what’s best for the next generation,” as opposed to “what’s best for his or her next election.”“Too many, it seems on both sides of the aisle, just kick the can down the road, borrowing from our kids’ future to make up for the lack of discipline today,” he added. “We need a leader who says enough, stop, we’re not doing that anymore.”Murphy is the youngest of four kids, growing up in a working class family outside of Boston, Massachusetts. His family were loyal Democrats, where John and Robert Kennedy were revered. Those were his roots, the commitment to hard work and the belief that the Democratic Party is dedicated to helping all, especially the middle class improve their lives, which they believe benefits the whole country, Murphy maintained. “No matter how much success I’ve had in the private and public sector,” he said, “nothing has taken me off of that set.“That’s where I started and that’s where I remain.”The campaign is just getting under way but Murphy has begun the process of reaching out, attending events, working the phones to raise money and heighten his visibility.With no incumbent, before too much longer he’ll undoubtedly have announced competition for the party’s nomination. Other names purportedly considering testing the political waters are political warhorses state Senate President Stephen Sweeney, from Gloucester County; Union County’s Senator Raymond Lesniak (whose announcement he wouldn’t be running for re-election to the Senate is seen as precipitating his run for the governor’s office) and Assemblyman John Wisniewski, from Middlesex County. Also considering joining the fray on the Democratic side is Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop, who had also previously worked for Goldman Sachs.On the GOP side, Evesham Township Mayor Randy Brown, in Burlington County, has expressed an interest in running, while Ocean County businessman Joseph Rudy Rullo has begun campaigning, establishing a Facebook page. And there is incumbent Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, apparently considering a bid for her boss’s job, as is state Senator Tom Kean Jr., who represents the 21st Legislative District in Morris County and is the son of Gov. Tom Kean.last_img read more

Brand South Africa and InvestSA Embark on an Investment Promotion Roadshow

first_img–  Brand South Africa in collaboration with the Department of Trade and Industry’s InvestSA will be embarking on an investment promotion roadshow to Switzerland, Germany, France and India from 19 – 30 March 2019.The primary objective of the investment promotion roadshow is to engage with stakeholders from government and business to discuss factors pertinent to enhancing South Africa as a more attractive investment destination partner to these important markets.General Manager for Global Markets at Brand South Africa, Dr Judy Smith-Höhn said: “Today, South Africa is one of the most sophisticated, diverse and promising emerging markets globally. Strategically located at the tip of the African continent, and ranked as one of the most powerful economies on the continent, the country is a key investment location, both for the market opportunities that lie within its borders and as a financial services gateway to the rest of the African continent.  Overall South Africa performs well in the Nation Brand Index and engaging business in these markets is important for Brand SA. The investment announcements that have been made by companies since the launch of President Ramaphosa’s investment drive attests to our competitiveness profile. It has boosted the economy and positioned South Africa as a key global partner for growth and investment.”Acting Deputy Director General for InvestSA, Mr Yunus Hoosen, says the investment promotion roadshow is in alignment with South Africa’s five-year investment drive which seeks to raise R1.2 trillion in domestic and international investments as a means to reigniting the economy. As part of InvestSA’s mandate to support investors exploring opportunities in South Africa by helping with information, facilitation and aftercare, the roadshow will focus on Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act, local content, Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE), Equity Equivalent Investment Program, Intellectual Property and well as update on Protection and Promotion of Investment Act.“South Africa offers a combination of developed first world economic infrastructure and a growing emerging market. Its investment potential lies in its diversity of sectors and industries. It is also a major trading nation, exporting and importing more than $167 billion worth of goods every year, from a location that makes it an ideal gateway into African and other global markets.“Our objective as InvestSA is to facilitate the increase in the quality and quantity of foreign and domestic direct investment by providing an investment recruitment, problem-solving and information service to retain and expand investment in South Africa and into Africa. As well as to actively market, promote and facilitate investment in key high-yielding growth sectors of the South African economy,” added Hoosen.The India leg of the investment promotion roadshow will be hosted in collaboration with the South African High Commission and the South African Consulate-General, with business engagements scheduled to take place in New Delhi and Mumbai respectively.This visit follows on President Cyril Ramaphosa’s state visit to India in January where a three-year strategic programme of cooperation was signed by both President Ramaphosa and Prime Minister Modi.Switzerland, Germany and France have been long term investors in South Africa with many of their Multinationals located in South Africa. These countries are also key trading partners of South Africa.In addition to its role as an important emerging economy, South Africa is also seen as regional manufacturing hub to other African markets by investors.  Apart from the traditional economic sectors for which South Africa is renowned for, new industries and investment opportunities in energy and infrastructure, the information and telecommunication industry, clean tech as well as the health care market are considered attractive future markets for potential investorslast_img read more

A New Way to Generate Solar Electricity

first_imgA natural replacement for toxic flame retardantsAlternating layers of clay and chitosan (a polymer derived from crustacean shells) have shown promise as a possible flame retardant in lab tests at Texas A&M University. When applied to foam and exposed to a direct flame for ten seconds, the coating formed a protective thermal barrier that kept the foam from igniting or melting — giving researchers hope that coatings made from renewable materials could eventually replace toxic brominated flame retardants (BFRs), which are ubiquitous in consumer items.Unlike BFRs, which chemically disrupt a fire that has already begun, this coating is designed to prevent ignition, Grunlan explained. Chitosan between the clay layers does flame up briefly, but the clay quickly “collapses,” he said. “The polymer gets eaten out by heat and fire initially, and what’s left behind is a layer of clay-rich coating which acts as a heat barrier.” A new way to generate solar electricityResearchers in applied physics at the University of Michigan have discovered a method that uses the magnetic component of light to generate electricity without using semiconductors or photovoltaic (PV) panels.When the electromagnetic waves in light passes through certain transparent materials, the magnetic waves are amplified, causing electrons to move away from their nuclei, and creating a static electric field. Conductive materials can be placed on either end of the transparent material to collect the voltage generated across the field, a method that could potentially achieve close to 100% conversion efficiency, because it does not rely on the heat-creating light absorption that limits efficiency of PV panels. The researchers have applied for a patent and are currently investigating suitable transparent materials to use in further experiments. Converting waste plastics into crude oilOregon-based alternative energy start-up Agilyx says it has developed a system to convert difficult-to-recycle discarded plastics into synthetic crude oil. The technology has been in development for a year and a half, and the company predicts that it will be ready for commercial applications in mid-2012.The system vaporizes the plastics and then condenses the vapor into oil. The modular system currently under development, according to the company, will be capable of converting 10,000 pounds of plastic into 60 barrels of synthetic crude oil a day. Once the technology is developed, Agilyx plans to sell the modules to trash companies, which would own and operate the machinery and sell the synthetic crude oil to refiners.Technologies like this one, dubbed “resource recovery,” are becoming increasingly attractive as solid-waste stockpiles grow and extraction of virgin materials becomes more costly. Agilyx predicts that its systems will provide owners a 25% rate of return on their investment, and major players in the trash industry, such as Waste Management, have already invested in the company. Windows that allow in light but not heatResearchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories have developed a technology that reduces solar heat gain without blocking visible light, allowing for “smart windows” that can respond to outdoor conditions without a visible change in the window. At present, electrochromic window coatings can block near-infrared radiation, which causes heat gain, but only by darkening the window at the same time; this can lead to increased use of indoor lighting and offset the energy benefits of smart windows.The new technology uses a transparent “nanocrystal” coating of indium tin oxide — a semiconductor used in flat-screen TV displays. The coating could allow for the creation of smart windows programmed to work in tandem with ventilation and lighting systems by selectively allowing heat to pass and always allowing light to pass — thereby reducing heating, cooling, and lighting loads.center_img An environmentalist dies and reports to the pearly gates, but there is a mix-up and she is sent to the gates of hell. Once in hell, she is horrified by the air and water pollution, global warming, and habitat destruction. But she gets to work to improve the situation, and soon the hellscape is covered with grass and plants, the food is organic, the air is clean, and the people are happy.One day, God calls Satan up on the telephone and says with a sneer, “So, how’s it going down there in hell?” Satan tells God about the improvements brought by the environmentalist, and God says, “What? You’ve got an environmentalist? That’s a mistake — send her up here or I’ll sue.” Satan laughs and answers, “Yeah, right. And just where are you going to get a lawyer?”It takes all types to deal with our environmental problems — and today I’d like to focus on the researchers who are toiling away in laboratories, trying to eke out greater efficiencies from technologies that most of us never give any thought to. Here are some recent highlights that I have dug up. Hydropower that’s safer for fishThe Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) has received $1.5 million from the U.S. Department of Energy to field-test a new hydroelectric turbine developed by research engineers at Alden Research Laboratory. The turbine is designed to maximize the use of hydroelectric resources without further jeopardizing migrating fish populations.Preliminary testing indicates that the Alden turbine can maintain high efficiencies while allowing fish migrating downstream to pass with a 98% survival rate; upstream migration issues must be addressed separately with other mechanisms, such as fish ladders.Instead of the six or more blades common in older turbine designs, the Alden turbine has only three blades, reducing the chance that fish will be struck by a blade. The blades also have a semi-round edge, which pushes enough water in front of the spinning blades to move the fish out of their path.If the Alden turbine proves successful in field tests, it could open the door to maximizing the use of hydropower resources currently being lost to dam spillover and through-fish bypasses meant to protect migrating fish populations. Researchers estimate domestic hydropower capacity lost to fish protection measures to be as much as 25,000 megawatts.Have you seen some cool research items? Let me know!Thanks to my colleague Evan Dick for his work in compiling some of this information.Tristan Roberts is Editorial Director at BuildingGreen, Inc., in Brattleboro, Vermont, which publishes information on green building solutions.last_img read more

10 months agoPique in talks with Barcelona pal Messi about FC Andorra investment

Pique in talks with Barcelona pal Messi about FC Andorra investmentby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveBarcelona defender Gerard Pique is in talks with Leo Messi about a shareholding in FC Andorra.Sport says talks are at an advanced stage and there could be an agreement made public between all implicated parties in the coming days. Pique’s desire is to get Messi on board as a shareholder. Even though the Argentine star’s involvement would be minor, the Barça defender is aware that just Messi’s image is one of the best possible spokesmen to expand the project internationally. Andorra insiders say talks are well down the line and the official announcement could come at a press conference which will be held to reveal the club’s new ambitious structure. TagsTransfersAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say read more

10 months agoJuventus move to trump Bayern Munich for Hudson-Odoi

first_imgJuventus move to trump Bayern Munich for Hudson-Odoiby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveJuventus have moved to trump Bayern Munich for Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi.The Mirror says the Italians are also hoping to launch a last-minute raid for Chelsea wonderkid Hudson-Odoi , to try to steal him from under the noses of the German giants.Juventus have held talks with Hudson-Odoi’s representatives, but the 18-year-old Chelsea starlet is believed to favour Bayern amid his contract stand-off at Stamford Bridge. Bayern’s Bundesliga rivals Red Bull Leipzig are also keen.Hudson-Odoi has seen England age-groups star Jadon Sancho’s success since joining Borussia Dortmund from Manchester City in 2017, which has left him believing Bayern and the Bundesliga would be a good switch. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

SMU’s Yanick Moreira Tweets Frustration With Goaltend Call, Calls Out Kevin Durant, Apologizes To Fans

first_imgYanick Moreira called for questionable goaltend.In what was one of the craziest endings we’ve ever seen in an NCAA Tournament game, No. 6 seed SMU lost to No. 11 seed UCLA on a goaltending call. The call was somewhat questionable, but it gave the Bruins a one-point lead, eventually sending them into the Third Round with a 60-59 victory. Following the devastating loss, SMU senior forward Yanick Moreira, the recipient of the goaltending call, took to Twitter to express his frustration. I would like to apologize for all the SMU fans as senior I shouldn’t make those type of mistake.. I’m really sorry— Yanick Moreira (@Ymoreira35) March 19, 2015“@KDTrey5: Yep that was a goaltend.” You right ref thank you for end my college career pic.twitter.com/nhrrON0DQM— Yanick Moreira (@Ymoreira35) March 19, 2015These guys don’t deserve it . It really hurts . All those mile run in the summer all those 2 a day to end my college career like this— Yanick Moreira (@Ymoreira35) March 19, 2015Here’s the play. Was it the right call?last_img read more

Rice Football Signed A 7-Year-Old Boy With Leukemia In A Very Special Ceremony

first_imgRice Leukemia SigneeRice Leukemia SigneeThe Rice football program landed a very special recruit on Wednesday. Seven-year-old Ziggy Stoval-Redd, who is battling leukemia, signed with the Owls during a special signing ceremony. Accompanied by his mother and Rice head football coach David Bailiff, Ziggy received a warm round of applause from the Owl team. Here’s the video:Whenever stories like this pop up in the sports world, it always warms the heart a little bit.last_img

CANADIAN ACTRESS ELLEN PAGE AND DANCER EMMA PORTNER ARE MARRIED

first_imgAdvertisement Twitter Facebook Login/Register With: Advertisement Ellen Page is now a married woman.The 30-year-old star of “Juno,” ”Inception” and the recent remake of “Flatliners” wed Emma Portner, who teaches contemporary jazz at the Broadway Dance Center in New York.The Juno star announced on social media Wednesday that she tied the knot … alongside a photo of the newlyweds’ wedding bands the actress wrote, “Can’t believe I get to call this extraordinary woman my wife.” Portner also announced the surprise marriage on her Instagram page, writing, “@ellenpage I LOVE YOU.”Page posted the news Wednesday on Instagram in a photo of the couple’s hands showing off wedding bands on their ring fingers. Her publicist later confirmed the union.The actress first began posting photos with Portner on social media over the summer.In 2014, Page came out as gay at a Human Rights Campaign event in a rousing speech that earned her a standing ovation. The actress said she was ready to come out in hopes that her experience would help other people struggling with their sexuality.The actress previously dated artist Samantha Thomas. LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisementlast_img read more