first_imgClick here to subscribe to the Pharr Out BlogLast night was the fourth of July. My husband Brew met me at a dirt road in Vermont and then whisked me away to Woodstock, VT to enjoy a cook-out and fireworks show. On a side note, when I say he met me on a dirt road… the road was actually a rock-strewn river and Brew was forced to park over a mile away and run in to meet me. But, finding me – as always- we waded back to the car and headed off to celebrate our country’s independence.I had hiked over eleven hours and put in 32 miles, but I still had a sense of guilt and remorse at leaving the trail. I mean I am trying to finish the trail as quickly as possible and now I was headed off to enjoy a community gathering in a town I had never been to before? I felt fine, there were two hours of sunlight left… I should have still been hiking! But the fact of the matter is, Brew and I had already decided to take it easy our first two days in Vermont to let my body recover from the demands of New Hampshire and Maine.Overall, physically I am pleased with how well my body has handled the trail. Yes, I get tired hiking all day, but I have gotten over my initial injuries and soreness and can tell that I am getting stronger. My ankle was swollen from day 2 to 11, but is now quite shapely and small once again. The thing that is really getting to me is that I am sleepy – very sleepy. I was waking up at 4:30 almost every morning in the first two states…. you gotta love all that summer daylight, but all those early mornings have caught up with me and I now crave naps every morning at about 11 AM. Folks like David Horton and other amazing trailblazers have told me that they require very little sleep during their athletic endeavors. I need 8 hours not only for the trail, but also for my marriage – I get very cranky and whiny when I don’t sleep (Brew will attest to this!).A part of me can justify the fact that we are getting some R&R as we enter Vermont. But the type-A in me hates knowing that there is gas left in the tank. So heading into Woodstock, VT, I cringed at the thought of off-trail fun. Was this really allowed? Does record setting condone hot-dogs and apple pie?It wasn’t until my dinner digested midway through the fireworks show that I finally decided the moment was good – the moment was very good. As much as this record attempt is about making miles and appreciating the ruggedness of the outdoors, it is also about enjoyment and self-preservation. So there is something to be said for pausing and taking note of the culture and region surrounding the trail. Above that, I really, honestly, truly, don’t think my body could go all-day, everyday, even if my subconscious tells me it should. Burning out in New England is not conducive to completing the next 1600+ miles. So yes, I am going to take two short days, and yes I am going to enjoy my 4th of July hot dog, and in the end… I think I’m probably going to hike better and stronger because of these guilty pleasures.last_img read more

first_imgLike all good Americans, I’ve been spending most of my waking hours watching the Winter Olympics. The competitions are great, but what I really love are the backstories of the athletes, many of whom have had to overcome astonishing circumstances to compete in Sochi. One of the dudes who medaled in Slopestyle Skiing is from Indiana. Think about that. A skier from Indiana. Talk about perseverance.Consider me inspired. So when a freak storm dumped a foot of snow across the mountains of Western North Carolina, my ski buddies and I were determined to hit up our local resort. Even though every newscaster on TV was urging everyone to stay home – for god’s sake – just stay home.All due respect to Southern newscaster weather paranoia, when the snow falls, you don’t stay home, you go skiing. So we drove the streets that everyone warned would result in sudden death, laughing at all the poor souls that were huddled up with blankets and fear in their homes. Before we even got out of the neighborhood, we came upon a three car pile up at the bottom of a slick hill…and immediately turned into a four-car pile up when we slid sideways in comically slow motion into a Honda Element that was stuck in the middle of the road. We bumped that Honda out of the way, bouncing off just enough to slide further down the hill into a ’94 Chevy Blazer, which we pushed into the third car at the bottom of the hill.If this were a slopestyle competition, I’d call the move a “switch 180 with a tail bumper grab.” Flawless execution.Luckily, nobody was hurt in the accident, because, like I said, we were moving at about the speed of a curling stone. Coincidentally, a college girl broke her leg while sledding the hill next to our four-car pile up.  So maybe those Southern newscasters aren’t so paranoid after all. Maybe those of us raised below the Mason Dixon line really should just stay at home if there’s a threat of snow.Or maybe not. Most (read: smarter) people would’ve seen the four-car pile up as a sign and turned back home, but we’re not like most (smart) people. We persevered. That skier from Indiana probably should’ve just become a farmer, or whatever people do in Indiana, but he persevered. He kept pushing, building a terrain park in his backyard out of turf and PVC pipe. We kept pushing onward after the accident, driving a blistering 35 mph to our home hill and shredded the best powder the mountain has seen in years. We poached slopes that haven’t been skiable all season, skiing in complete darkness away from the lit runs on the other side of the mountain. We got wicked crazy on the last Chinese Downhill, and drank Oskar Blues Old Chub in the parking lot after the lifts stopped running. There was only one concussion in the group the whole night. I call that a success.Again, we probably should’ve called it a night when we got back home after midnight, what with the angry looks on our wives’ faces, but we didn’t. We persevered. We strapped on our cross country skis and kicked into downtown, skiing right down the middle of the road on several inches of fresh powder until 2am. We only stopped once, to get a beer at the only bar that had the balls to stay open during the storm, and toasted our Olympic-style perseverance, as well as our favorite athletes over in Sochi.last_img read more

first_img 29SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Jennifer Davis Davis is vice president of SmartGrowth™ for payments processor TMG, which offers clients across North America a full-suite of products from credit, debit and ATM to prepaid and digital wallet … Web: www.tmg.global Details Credit unions going head-to-head with major credit card companies may face some challenges. A recent article from CreditUnions.com noted how the limited credit card offerings of some smaller financial institutions (FIs) may pale in comparison to credit card giants like Capital One. These so-called “giants” often seem to have more resources and better technology.However, consumers choosing to utilize credit unions did so for a reason. These consumers will remain loyal if their credit unions offer them compelling products. Credit unions looking to retain their cardholders and attract new ones in 2016 should focus on the following key elements:1) Rewards: Research shows rewards are one of the top reasons cardholders choose a specific card. Cardholders with attractive rewards programs tend to spend more on average than those with unattractive programs. To encourage front-of-wallet behaviors, credit unions should adopt rewards programs that meet cardholders’ specific needs. Offering bonus spends like cash back and double rewards points in addition to common rewards can also help stimulate spending.Credit unions should also be vigilant about managing the profitability of these bonus spends. When not managed correctly, rewards programs can end up costing banks more than they are worth. Keep costs under control by: capping bonus spends, managing redemption value and having higher APRs for purchases and balance transfers on rewards cards.2) Credit Limits: Cardholders often reach for cards with higher limits to revolve a balance or make purchases. Unless there is a compelling reason to choose cards with lower limits, such as loyalty or rewards programs, cardholders will often ignore the lower-limit cards in their wallets.Line assignments are very predictive of the average balance on a card. The industry average credit limit is around $10,000, whereas the average balance on a card is around $2,700. Credit unions should consider reviewing their underwriting policies and determining where they can take calculated risks in terms of line assignments. They should also consider annual credit limit increase campaigns. Both of these efforts will help smaller FIs stay relevant to cardholders as they grow and expand their credit worthiness.3) Cardholder Experiences: Qualified cardholders typically have a lot of options when determining a card of choice. Credit cards that prove challenging to use will not encourage front-of-wallet behaviors. Cardholders want (and expect) simple interactions with their credit unions to make payments, resolve issues and ask questions.Credit unions should survey their teams to determine common cardholder complaints or escalations. They then can explore if there are controls or automation not yet in place that would improve the cardholder experience. The right controls and automated programs, like auto pay and over-the-phone payments, make it easier for cardholders to interact with their banks. Cardholders often expect these features to be in place, resulting in a perceived gap if their credit unions don’t have them.Credit unions looking to take on credit card giants should not feel intimidated. By focusing on the features that matter to cardholders, such as those outlined above, smaller credit unions can successfully compete. Simply adapting offerings to match cardholders’ changing needs can mean the difference between a credit union’s growth and its lackluster performance.last_img read more

first_img 2SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Much has been written about the how millennials today are slower to marry and buy homes than young people of the same age in previous generations, but they are not alone. Their Gen X elders have also fallen behind in the markers for economic maturity.According to a new report from the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), Gen X households — called the “sandwich generation” because they’re caught between paying for college, caring for their parents and saving for their own retirement — are also less likely to own a home than prior generations of the same age, 40 to 51.Slightly more than 65% of families headed by a Gen Xer owned their home in 2016, down from just over 75% and nearly 72% in 2004 and 1992, respectively, according to EBRI.Similar differences were seen for the percentages of Gen-X-led families having any type of  retirement plan: 67% in 2016 versus roughly 72% and 73% in 2004 and 1992. continue reading »last_img read more

first_imgThe mission was dubbed Tianwen-1 (“Questions to Heaven”) in a nod to a classical Chinese poem that has verses about the cosmos.The probe aims to go into Martian orbit, land on the planet and release a small rover to conduct research on its surface.The craft will travel at least 55 million kilometers (34 million miles) to reach its destination. It will arrive seven months after launch, in February, according to an official. Here are five things to know about the program: Six-wheeled roverThe rover, weighing 240 kilograms (530 pounds), has six wheels and four solar panels, Chinese state media reported.The rover will roam Mars for three months, according to Sun Zezhou, chief engineer of the probe.The machine is supposed to analyze the planet’s soil and atmosphere, take photos, chart maps and look for signs of past life. China launched a rover to Mars on Thursday, another milestone for its space program after putting humans into orbit and landing a probe on the Moon.It is among a trio of nations, along with the United Arab Emirates and the United States, launching missions to the Red Planet this month, taking advantage of a period when Mars and Earth are favorably aligned.Beijing’s space program has made huge strides in recent years as it tries to catch up with the United States and Russia. Topics : Jade RabbitsChina sent two rovers to the Moon, Jade Rabbit One and Two (Yutu in Chinese), in 2013 and 2019.The second rover made a historic soft landing on the far side of the Moon, making China the first country to do so.”The lunar Yutu rovers are good practice in many ways for a Martian rover. The terrain is broadly similar,” Jonathan McDowell, an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, told AFP.But the distance from Earth means communication will be slower, McDowell said, adding that the risk of problems increases with such a long trip. Without Russia this time It is not China’s first attempt to go to Mars.A previous mission with Russia in 2011 failed because the Russian launcher was unable to get the craft into a transfer orbit to slingshot towards the Red Planet.The hardware partially disintegrated as it later crashed back to Earth.Following that failure, Beijing decided to try again on its own.”Its purposes are not different from those of other countries: develop the capability, explore the universe… and finally, create political influence and national prestige,” said Chen Lan, an independent analyst at GoTaikonauts.com, which specializes in news about China’s space program. ‘Questions to Heaven’ China’s Mars probe lifted off on July 23 from the southern island of Hainan. Space race China has poured billions of dollars into its space program to catch up with the US, Russia and Europe.In 2003, it became the third nation — after the US and Russia — to send a human into space.It has launched a slew of satellites into orbit, completing a constellation in June to set up its own navigation system, Beidou, to rival the US GPS system.The Asian powerhouse plans to assemble a space station by 2022 in Earth orbit.And China is aiming even higher, hoping to become only the second nation to send humans to the Moon a decade from now.last_img read more

first_img Sharing is caring! By: Joseph Thomas, News Contributor Share LocalNews DFC Awards 2011 by: – March 11, 2011 Share Share 45 Views   no discussions The Dominica Festivals Commission has announced it prize list for the 2011 Carnival season at a press conference held this morning at the Calypso House in Bath Estate, Roseau.Topping the list of awardees was Thunder Birds as the Adult Band of the year with a prize of $15,000.00, second place went to Carnival Corner which will receive $10,000.00 and Mercury Band placed third with an award of $5,000.00The Best Old Mass Band for the Monday Parade and thier prize is $3,500.00 while the Waasin Sensay of Grand Bay placed second and the Good Hope Darkies placed third. Carnival Corner also received awards for The Best King and Best Queen of the Band .Best Individual was the former Chairman of the CDC Reggie Burke, while the award for the Best float went to Team Work Spirit. The school band of the year award went to the Grandbay Primary School and they will receive $10,000.00, The Pre Schoolers came in second and their prize amount is $5000.00 and third place prize award of $3000.00 went to the Goodwill Secondary School.The Special Award for Carnival Spirit went to Africulture Stilt Walkers whilst the Special Award for band which played the most calypsos went to the Fanatik Band.The CDC is estimated to spend about $63, 000.00 in prizes for the festivities just concluded. Tweetlast_img read more

first_imgSt. Lucie County Commissioner Chris Dzadovsky announced on Friday that the county secured a $100,000 grant from the Morgridge Family Foundation, awarded to The Community Foundation of Martin- St. Lucie’s COVID-19 response fund, which will help cover the costs of childcare for first responders and healthcare workers through the Boys and Girls Club of St. Lucie County.Those who are on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic will get the help they deserve.The grant will help pay for daily childcare costs, overnight childcare costs, and help staff keep their jobs.last_img read more

first_img(REUTERS) – FA Cup holders Manchester United will face Championship side Wigan Athletic at Old Trafford in the FA Cup fourth round after the draw was made yesterday.The match-up will mean a quick return to Old Trafford for Warren Joyce, the club’s former reserve team manager who left United after 10 years to join Wigan last November.Second tier side Wigan have struggled since producing one of the competition’s biggest ever upsets when they beat Manchester City 1-0 in the final to win the FA Cup in 2013 and currently lie second from bottom in the Championship.Unusually, the draw did not throw up one confirmed clash between Premier League teams although Arsenal could face Southampton if the Saints beat Norwich City in the replay and Sam Allardyce’s Crystal Palace, who also have more work to do after a 0-0 draw at Bolton, could face Manchester City.Liverpool, who were surprisingly held to a goalless draw by League Two side Plymouth Argyle on Sunday, will play Wolves if they win their replay while league leaders Chelsea will entertain Championship side Brentford, the second time in four years the west London neighbours have been paired together in the fourth round.London’s other derby pits Millwall, who beat Premier League side Bournemouth in the third round, against Premier League side Watford.The Midlands will also host a fierce local tussle between fast-improving Championship side Derby County and Premier League champions Leicester City.Eight-time winners Tottenham Hotspur will be pleased with a home draw against League Two side Wycombe Wanderers while Sutton and Lincoln, the two non-league sides left in the competition, will be disappointed not to have secured Premier League opposition if they win their replays against Wimbledon and Ipswich respectively.Sutton have been paired with the winner of yesterday’s final third-round tie between Cambridge and Leeds United, while Lincoln would face Championship leaders Brighton.The games are scheduled to be played over the weekend of January 27-30.last_img read more

first_imgRAIN robbed the Achievers Youth and Sports Club of a comprehensive victory over Bath Sports Club on the second day of the West Berbice Cricket Association (WBCA) Anil Lalsa Construction Company-sponsored Two-Day Intermediate Cricket Competition at the Bush Lot ground on Saturday.The Achievers needed only three wickets to secure a comprehensive victory, but the inclement weather forced the cancellation of the clash.The inclement weather has also temporarily halted the competition, which was expected to continue yesterday.Bath had won the toss one week ago when the round started, but were restricted to 90 in 33.2 overs after former national U-19 cricketer, Kevin Sinclair, spun his way to 6-30 and fellow off-spinner, Andrew Dutchin, took 3-28.Sinclair then stroked his way to his second consecutive century in the competition. He hit 103 (9x4s, 4x6s), while Dutchin struck his second back-to-back half-century. His 51 not out had helped to push the score to 250-4 before the Achievers declared.In their second time at the crease, Bath Sports Club had reached 74-7 before play ended. It meant that Achievers needed just three wickets with an innings in hand and 86 runs ahead.In the second innings, Sinclair took 4-15 and pacer Christopher Bissoon 2-22.last_img read more

first_img Comments Sophomore center DeShonte Riley could miss the 2010-11 season with an injured foot, Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim said Friday. The foot has bothered the 7-foot Detroit native for a while now, and the team is currently in the process of considering a number of options, Boeheim said. ‘There was no one day that it happened,’ Boeheim said. ‘It’s just been sore and gotten more sore as he’s gone along. So we looked at it and found that he has an injury there.’ No decision has been made as to whether or not Riley will undergo surgery and use a medical redshirt this season or attempt to rehabilitate the foot without surgery in an attempt to play this season. Boeheim said both are still options and a decision will ultimately be made by the team’s media day on Oct. 15. Riley was expected to compete for a starting position this season after playing sparingly in 17 games as a freshman in 2009. Despite averaging just 1.4 points and 1.5 rebounds per game, he was the primary big man behind starters Rick Jackson and Arinze Onuaku in the SU frontcourt. Riley played valuable minutes in three NCAA Tournament games after Onuaku went out with a knee injury.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text Although Boeheim welcomes freshmen big men Baye Moussa Keita and Fab Melo, who was a McDonald’s All-American last year, it was widely assumed that Riley’s role would increase this season. With Onuaku now gone, Boeheim values Riley’s experience in the middle. ‘We do have some size,’ Boeheim said. ‘But we’d still like to have DeShonte. He has some experience and that’s always a factor, always a good thing.’ Because practice hasn’t officially begun, Boeheim declined to speculate how the injury might affect his lineup and frontcourt depth. With the 6-foot-9 Jackson returning as SU’s starting power forward, it’s possible he too could see time in the middle of SU’s 3-2 zone defense with Riley out. And if he’s done for the season, perhaps the pair of freshmen big men could play a big role for the Orange this year. ‘We’ll see how it goes,’ Boeheim said. ‘If he’s not able to play then obviously the freshmen will get a big opportunity to play this year.’ [email protected] Published on October 7, 2010 at 12:00 pmcenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more