By Jon Waterhouse
For the AJC
Celebrate the 25th anniversary of the largest New Year’s Eve gathering in the Southeast, and ring in 2014 with Underground Atlanta’s Peach Drop! Head down early for a day and evening jam-packed with activities leading up to 2013’s last hurrah. As the countdown to midnight begins, the Peach will descend from its 138-ft tower of lights right before confetti showers attendees and a dazzling firework show illuminates the night sky.
Organizers expect more than 100,000 guests to attend, some arriving as early as 11 a.m. If you are going, its best to take MARTA to the Five Points station. Other stations within walking distance are Peachtree Center, Georgia State, Garnett and Omni.
The celebration kicks off with family-style activities, from carnival rides to face painting and all points in between. A live music soundtrack flows from three stages throughout the day. Get a detailed schedule for New Year's Eve at Underground Atlanta
Actor and comedian David Koechner serves as emcee and award-winning R&B diva Janelle Monáe will perform in concert beginning at 11:15 p.m.
As the clock nears midnight, the crowd will thicken to see the giant peach drop from its 138-foot lighted tower. This year things prove a bit different as a mammoth M&M’S Peanut, the event’s sponsor, takes the trip with the peach.
Organizers promise a surprise coming from the hunk of candy once it arrives at the bottom. Massive blasts of confetti and a fireworks show follow. The bash continues into the first few hours of the new year as the bars, restaurants and nightclubs of Kenny’s Alley stay doors open until 3 a.m.
11 a.m.-3 a.m. Dec. 31. Free. Underground Atlanta, 50 Upper Alabama St., Atlanta 404-523-2311
More live music events, including Widespread Panic Dec. 31 in Atlanta
Chick-fil-a Bowl parade and other New Year's Eve fun in metro Atlanta
E-40 Talks Calling Off Notorious B.I.G. Murder PlotBay Area rapper shares story of Biggie beef. By Latifah Muhammad
Before the Notorious B.I.G.'s infamous rift with Tupac Shakur spearheaded the East Coast vs. West Coast beef, the Brooklyn MC had a clash with California native E-40.
In a Complex.com interview, 40 recounted a time when Biggie had a talk with a Canadian magazine and reportedly ranked the Bay Area general a "zero" on a 1-10 rap scale.
When word got back to 40, he confronted Biggie, who happened to be in Sacramento for a show. "I got on the phone with dude and I was like, 'I didn't know you felt like that,'" he recalled. He said Big denied the verbal slight and the misunderstanding got settled right then and there. "To make a long story short, I got him home safe, got him back to the hotel safe," 40 said.
The Sick Wit It Records founder then emphasized that he had nothing to do with Biggie performing in Northern California at the same time 40's crew was plotting on the New Yorker.
"I didn't book that concert, that's the main thing I want to say," the 46-year-old entrepreneur made clear. "But the s--t that went down as far as my folks on his head? They was, and I called it off."
Obama, Clinton Voted Most Admired Man and WomanFormer President George W. Bush and Oprah Winfrey came in second. By Joyce Jones
The Affordable Care Act is still as unpopular as ever, causing President Obama's job approval numbers to flatline, but Obama is still the man for a majority of Americans. For the sixth consecutive year, the president has been ranked the most admired man, according to a Gallup poll released Monday.
Each year, Gallup conducts the survey in which Americans name the man and woman living anywhere in the world whom they admire most. This year's poll was conducted between Dec. 5-8.
Former first lady, senator and secretary of state Hillary Clinton was named the most popular – for the 12th consecutive year. She has, however, topped the list 18 times, the most of any woman since Gallup began asking the question in 1948.
Former President George W. Bush and Pope Francis were tied for second place with four percent of support. Finishing behind Clinton was media mogul Oprah Winfrey, at 6 percent, followed by First Lady Michelle Obama and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
Follow Joyce Jones on Twitter: @BETpolitichick.
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BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - A swarm of biting fish injured more than 70 people who were bathing at a popular beach in Argentina on Christmas, a medical official said on Thursday.
A seven-year-old girl had her finger partially amputated and dozens more suffered bite wounds on their extremities from the fish, a relative of the piranha called "palometas," said Federico Cornier, the director of emergency services in the city of Rosario.
"This is not normal," Cornier said on television. "It's normal for there to be an isolated bite or injury, but the magnitude in this case was great ... this is an exceptional event."
The attack happened off the popular beaches of the Parana River near Rosario, 300 kilometers (186 miles) north of Buenos Aires, where many Argentines were seeking relief from a heat wave over the holiday.
(Reporting By Alejandro Lifschitz, Writing by Mitra Taj; Editing by Kenneth Barry)
By The Associated Press
The Associated Press
McDonald's Corp. has shut down a website intended to provide employees with work and life guidance after it generated negative publicity for the fast-food company.
The McResource program has been criticized for creating unrealistic budgets and offering advice that was out of touch with its workers' pay. The website, which was run by an outside company, also reportedly discouraged workers from eating fast food.
McDonald's, based in Oak Brook, Ill., said Thursday that it is having its vendor take down the website.
"Between links to irrelevant or outdated information, along with outside groups taking elements out of context, this created unwarranted scrutiny and inappropriate commentary," the company said in a statement.
Earlier this year, media and labor groups criticized the website for content including sample budgets for employees that were based on holding two jobs and included no costs for heating, as well as suggestions on what to tip a personal fitness trainer or au pair.
One critic, the "Low Pay is Not Okay" campaign, was one of the groups behind strikes and rallies by fast-food workers and labor organizers earlier this month that demanded better pay. While efforts vary by state, organizers are hoping to build public support to raise the federal minimum wage of $7.25, or about $15,000 a year for full-time work.
And in an embarrassing moment for McDonald's, the world's largest hamburger chain, CNBC reported last week that the McResource website discouraged eating fast food as part of its tips for healthy living.
While it has shut down the website, McDonald's said it plans to continue an internal telephone help line through which the majority of its employees access its work-life help resources.
Copyright The Associated Press
By Nedra Rhone
Most of us know the day after Christmas is a great day to score deals on Christmas decorations, but the experts at DealNews.com say there are quite a few other items that may offer good deals as well.
So what are the best thing to buy right after Christmas?
Apparel: According to DealNews editors, Banana Republic, Club Monaco, GAP, and French Connection, had "best of the year," Editors' Choice-level sales on the day after Christmas in 2012. Look for discounts of 30 percent to 50 percent off on top of sales that already slashed up to 75 percent off. Be sure to take printable coupons to get additional savings if you are planning to shop in-store. Stores like Saks Fifth Avenue and 6pm also offered their biggest percent-off sales during this time period last year, along with no-minimum free shipping.
Holiday treats and decor: Godiva, traditionally discounts its chocolates by up to 40 percent off, according to DealNews data. Also check for discounted chocoloates in department stores. For holiday decorations, both Home Depot and Lowe's offered particularly aggressive deals on all things Christmas last year helping shoppers save up to 75 percent off.
Brand-name HDTVs: Black Friday was for the third-tier TVs, post-Christmas sees brand names sets going on sale along with previous- generation electronic devices priced at up to 80 percent off.
Naturally, you'll see lots of deals advertised for after-Christmas sales -- some deals may be better than others, just be sure to stick to the things that you want or need and spend some time comparison shopping.
By Melissa Ruggieri
He’s threatened it before, but could it be that this time, Justin Bieber really is retiring?
Oh, who knows with this kid.
At about 10:30 p.m. Christmas Eve – also the eve of the release of his concert documentary, “Justin Bieber’s Believe” – the 19-year-old heartthrob tweeted to his 48 million followers, “My beloved beliebers I'm officially retiring.”
Then about 45 minutes later, a new tweet: “The media talks a lot about me. They make a up a lot of lies and want me to fail but I'm never leaving you, being a belieber is a lifestyle.”
And a few minutes after that, “Be kind loving to each other, forgive each other as god forgave us through Christ Merry Christmas IM HERE FOREVER.”
Last week, he told an L.A. radio station that he was retiring, and then later claimed to be “messing around.”
So which is it, Biebs? Are you really retiring or just looking for a new way to get attention?
And how will you feel if Bieber is serious this time? Eternally bummed or that the news is a Christmas miracle?
An $11.50 minimum wage measure has been passed by Washington's city council on Tuesday. Reuters reports via Yahoo on Dec. 17 that the minimum wage per hour was $8.25 before approval was made for that amount to rise in 2016 and be adjusted for inflation. This wage increase was approved unanimously by the council.
Washington's city council worked on raising the entry-level wage with lawmakers from Montgomery and Prince George's counties that are located in Washington's Maryland suburbs. Similar measures to the $11.50 minimum wage were also approved last month.
When the increased minimum wage goes into effect, there will be three jurisdictions consisting of 2.5 million residents with the highest minimum wage in the nation. The federal base rate is just $7.25 an hour.
Washington state has the highest hourly minimum wage rate at $9.19 an hour. City workers in Sonoma, Calif. earn $15.38 an hour.
Naturally there are opponents of this measure who feel the $11.50 minimum wage hourly rate should not have been approved since a base rate of pay should not be what workers can actually raise a family on or strive to settle on long-term. There seems to be more focus on the minimum rate of pay per hour given the economical impact of the recession and the fast-food worker strikes demanding employers pay them $15 an hour.
The latest hourly $11.50 minimum wage hike give workers in this category hope that their standard of living is being addressed by politicians and lawmakers. A number of opinions and speculations surround the issue in regards to how it will impact all parts of the economy, but it appears to be a sign of progress to many.
Girls in guys clothing… An innocent way to display our latest offerings on beautiful living canvases? Or a calculated move to lure consumers to our product via the oldest & most reliable advertising method in the book? The answer: Who really cares? Lighten up & enjoy the season already!
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ATLANTA, GA — With Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signing legislation Thursday making Illinois the 20th state in the nation to legalize medical marijuana, activists in Georgia say they want to be the next state to consider reform legislation, and have published a report on how to achieve their goals.
James Bell, director for Georgia Campaign for Access, Reform & Education (Georgia C.A.R.E.), said Georgia is ready to consider historic legislation allowing for medical marijuana.
In a seven page report entitled “A Guide to Enacting Medical Marijuana in Georgia,” Georgia CARE outlines the steps the southern state must take to remove criminal penalties, allow doctors to recommend therapeutic use and provide for a legal and safe source of medical marijuana.
“We believe the people of Georgia will support our efforts to allow patients with serious medical conditions to use marijuana under doctor’s supervision. We’re ready to take our plan to state lawmakers”, Bell said. “In 1980, Georgia was one of the first states in the nation to pass a compassionate medical marijuana law. We believe Georgia lawmakers are no less compassionate today. We should not treat patients like criminals.”
From the report: Four key principles for effective Georgia medical marijuana laws
The group is also hosting a symposium on Cannabis Therapeutics at EmoryUniversity in January 2014.
For more information about sensible marijuana reform in Georgia, visit www.gacareproject.com.
Atlwebradio News Staff: