How to get kids reading during a pandemic summer

It was a challenging spring quarter for millions of New York City students (and their parents), and this summer is shaping up to be chaotic, with many day camps closed, youth programs shuttered and other programs on hold. The Summer Slide — the loss of education that can occur during the summer months — is an annual concern. This season it’s magnified, coming after months of distance learning and disrupted routines.

As usual, the New York Public Library is helping out.

“For the kids and families of New York City, this summer is going to look quite different than any other in recent memory,” said New York Public Library President Anthony W. Marx. “It is more important than ever for the City’s libraries to support these families and offer programming, book recommendations, and more to keep kids engaged and learning outside the classroom (or their home schools).

“This has not been an easy year for anyone, especially our kids and teens, who have had their worlds turned upside down. If we can provide them and their families an escape via books and activities that also happen to support their education, then we are doing our jobs this summer.”

Here’s just a sample of some of the things happening:

  • A virtual summer camp series that runs from June 29 – August 7 for children, teens and tweens will consist of videos with librarians walking kids (and their families) through projects. The Web site will also include activity packets that can be downloaded.
  • Online story times which will also run on Channel 13 this summer, starting in July.
  • Virtual 1:1 tutoring offers free online homework help to kids in a variety of subjects, in both Spanish and English, in core subject areas.
  • The annual Summer Reading Challenge, which encourages kids to track their reading progress online and serves up book recommendations for eager readers.

Share this article:

Source: Read Full Article


Marvin Sordell reveals how hitting ‘breaking point’ with mental health forced the former Burnley star to retire – The Sun

FOR MARVIN SORDELL, retirement was a matter of life or death – quite literally.

A career that started at Watford in 2009 and ended in July with Burton Albion is now over, but not because of a niggling injury, nor because of a ripped-up contract.

At just 28, it was an early exit born from crippling depression, deteriorating mental health and a serious concern for his own well-being.

Having attempted suicide back in 2013, Sordell is brave enough to admit that another season of football in England’s third tier could have prompted a second attempt.

Speaking to SunSport, he said: “I was pretty much at breaking point. And for me, the breaking point is suicidal thoughts.

“Removing myself from this situation was the best thing to do regardless of the football.

“When you’re suffering from mental health and something is a big trigger then you need to do what you can to get rid of that.

“Moving on has certainly made me feel a lot happier and it has taken a big weight off my shoulders. I feel free. I can now control my own narrative.”

Sordell had been trying to retire for years; the pressures of modern day professional football and a cut-throat industry over a ten-year career taking its toll.

It reached the point where he admitted to being more afraid of success than failure.

But through a fear of the unknown and a desire not to give up on the game he loves, he would battle on.


This time was different, however. Sordell was secretly omitted from Burton’s pre-season last season due to what we now know to be ‘anxiety and depression’. He simply couldn’t bring himself to turn up, let alone train.

And in the last few months of last season, after returning from a dire loan spell at Northampton, a reliance on alcohol to numb the pain really hit home.

He continued: “To be drinking 7, 8, 9 or 10 days in a row, I clearly knew I wasn’t happy.

“After a while it just eats up at you, chips away slowly, slowly, slowly. It’s the industry rather than the game.

“Everything is based on opinions. Someone’s opinion of you doesn’t match up to what you think your ability or worth is.

“And then you find yourself in a position and place worse than you could ever imagine.

“Up until two or three years ago if something happened in a game or in the changing room, I wouldn’t be able to leave the house all weekend. Emotionally I would feel so vulnerable.

“Playing the game is what I’ve loved to do, always, since I was a little boy and I still love playing and I would still want to play in some capacity.

“It’s just being a professional football player at this current moment in time, I don’t enjoy.”

Sordell was supposed to be this country’s next great talent after cruising through the Hornet’s academy and into the Championship.

An England U21 call-up came next before a chance to represent Team GB at the Olympics in 2012 under Stuart Pearce – the only coach he claims to have every fully understood him.

But somewhere along the line he became lost. The expectation. The big money move to Prem side Bolton in 2013. The scrutiny. The depression. The feeling of abandonment. The racism.

“Throughout my career I found there was a perception of black players being lazy, flash, arrogant, ungrateful and have an attitude problem,” he admits.

“Because of this, we have to do more, work harder and be less outspoken than our ethnic counterparts in order to be presented with an opportunity that is of equal standing.”


EVERY 90 minutes in the UK a life is lost to suicide.

It doesn't discriminate, touching the lives of people in every corner of society – from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, reality stars and footballers.

It's the biggest killer of people under the age of 35, more deadly than cancer and car crashes.

And men are three times more likely to take their own life than women.

Yet it's rarely spoken of, a taboo that threatens to continue its deadly rampage unless we all stop and take notice, now.

That is why The Sun launched the You're Not Alone campaign.

The aim is that by sharing practical advice, raising awareness and breaking down the barriers people face when talking about their mental health, we can all do our bit to help save lives.

Let's all vow to ask for help when we need it, and listen out for others… You're Not Alone.

If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems, the following organisations provide support:

  • CALM,, 0800 585 858
  • Heads Together,
  • Mind,, 0300 123 3393
  • Papyrus,, 0800 068 41 41
  • Samaritans,, 116 123

Yet sitting in the George IV pub in Lichfield, Staffordshire, days after announcing his retirement, what is so striking is Sordell’s lack of anger or bitterness towards those he could quite rightly claim let him down in his time of need.

He smiles: “I’m not angry. I’m disappointed in myself sometimes, I could have done more.

“At times, I thought if I didn’t think so much it would be easier but then I wouldn’t be the person I am. I wouldn’t want to ever change who I am to then have a better career.

“I’m also disappointed in football and the industry itself. Whether that’s governing bodies like the PFA and FA or players and coaches I’ve worked with.

“But I want to be able to use this to make a change. Football needs to change and fans want to see real people. Fans don’t care about all the rubbish.

“If players can show who they really are without having to worry about all these filters and other things, then it will make for a much closer knit and greater game.

“But right know everything is so split.”


Sordell has already been approached by current players in the EFL and Prem suffering in the same way who also want out of football, but fear a lack of education, financial security and social acceptance is holding them back.

He wants to help change that, and has already been in touch with those in high places offering his services. He is just waiting for a call back.

Sordell sighs: “They [The FA and PFA] haven’t called me. I don’t know if they will.

“It’s not frustrating for me personally, but there are so many current and former players who have been through similar circumstances.

“A lot can be done to help but it’s only if the PFA and the FA want to help. They have access to all of them.

“It’s invaluable to have the knowledge of people from inside the game. These organisations have a lot of people with experience in business management or finance or sales.

“But when you’re talking about making an impact in football, you need to understand what football looks like and feels like. Without that it’s very difficult to know.”

For now, Sordell is keeping busy, having lent himself to several non-football projects during his career – including a production company '180 Productions' and male suicide prevention campaign CALM – to ensure this transition was as smooth as possible.

And soon, along with his wife and two young children, he will move back down to Watford where it all began.

Only this time, the pressure is finally off.

Source: Read Full Article


Mother-of-two reveals how she is often mistaken for daughter's SISTER

Mother-of-two, 52, reveals she is often mistaken for her 25-year-old daughter’s SISTER – and claims her confidence and youthful appearance mean her sex life is ‘HOT’

  • Paivikki Kuoppakangas, 52, from Pori, Finland, opened up about youthful looks
  • Mother-of-two revealed she is often mistaken for 25-year-old daughter’s sister
  • She admitted her confidence and youthful appearance result in ‘hot sex’ life 
  • Revealed she ‘feels more fabulous, energetic and healthy’ than she did in her 20s

A mother-of-two has revealed how she is often mistaken for her daughter’s sister by strangers due to her youthful looks and stunning figure.  

Paivikki Kuoppakangas, 52, from the city of Pori, Finland, has always taken pride in her looks but it wasn’t until she reached her fifties that she took an interest in high-intensity interval training and a progressive weight lifting programme with an online personal trainer and fitness programme.

Now with a beauty queen daughter Hannah, 25, the PHD researcher leaves strangers with their jaws on the floor when they find out she is her mother and is often mistaken for her daughter’s sister. 

She admits that her confidence and youthful appearance have resulted in ‘hot sex’ with her husband, Marco, who is a Doctor of Chiropractic, saying: ‘I feel more fabulous, energetic and healthy compared to my twenties and thirties.’

Paivikki Kuoppakangas, 52, from the city of Pori, Finland, revealed she is often mistaken for her 25-year-old daughter’s sister (pictured, Paivikki with her daughter Hannah, 25, son David, now 16-years-old and Marco, her husband) 

Throughout her twenties and thirties she felt effortlessly fit and healthy and despite being a new mum to her daughter, Hannah, who is now 25 years old, and to her older son, David, who is now 16 years old, she was determined to keep in shape but did not actively work on herself.

In her mid-forties, she realised she needed to keep her metabolism balanced by taking up workout routines. With some hard work and motivation, she maintained her youthful appearance – and a body that any 20-year-old would be jealous of. 

The mother-of-two revealed: ‘Currently at the age of fifty-two, I’m feeling fabulous and fitter than ever before.

‘I have always been a normal weight and even skinny, but yo-yoing throughout my twenties all the way through to my forties.

The mother-of-two has revealed how she feels ‘fabulous and fitter than ever before’ thanks to a high intensity fitness schedule 

She claimed she is often mistaken for her 25-year-old daughter’s sister and said she has a ‘hot sex life’ with her husband (pictured, while holidaying) 

‘My fitness journey has four dimensions; it is about health, ageing well, due to my research work in academia and sitting at the computer most of the working days, married life with two kids, hot sex life with husband, we have been together thirty years, and breaking the prejudice of blond feminine girls and women of all colours.’ 

She explained: ‘Obviously it’s logical and physiological that when you feel content and good about yourself, the sex life will be vital.’

But she revealed she hadn’t always enjoyed sports, saying: ‘In my twenties I did some sports and exercises due to trying to be “a perfect housewife”.

‘In my thirties I took up aerobics classes approximately four-times-a-week to have some ‘alone’ time and to gain/stay fit.

The PHD researcher said she now feels more ‘fit and fabulous’ than ever, after finally finding a fitness routine that she loves 

Meanwhile the mother-of-two said in her twenties she ‘did some sports and exercises’ in an attempt to be ‘a perfect housewife’ (pictured, with her daughter in her twenties) 

Despite doing some exercises as a twenty-something, Piavikki said she didn’t enjoy sports until she got older 

‘My late thirties were a turning point when I took new steps in my academic career, from business interior decorator and housewife, which meant huge changes for the family – moving abroad and working ten to fourteen hours a day.’

She said things started to change after she began suffering from tension headaches following long hours working, and she released her clothes weren’t fitting in the same way anymore.

The mother-of-two explained: ‘In my late forties, I set a goal. When I was fifty years old, I had abs, a toned body and I feel better than ever. 

‘If I can do it anyone can do it. However, I could not have accomplished any of these alone. 

The 52-year-old now feels more confident than ever and relies on HIIT training to keep her figure perfectly toned (pictured, left and right) 

‘There has been huge love and support from my family and friends, including the blessings of good health and wellbeing that I have carried all along the journey.’

Meanwhile Paivikki insisted that high intensity training had been the key to her success, revealing: ‘HIIT training is important for your metabolism when you reach the age of fifty, as well as weight lifting according to research, which I do four to six times a week; consistently all parts of the body, including 10,000 steps, a day – not every day but I’m trying to hit that number.’

She added that she is often mistaken for her daughter’s sister by strangers, explaining: ‘[I have] One daughter, who is a beauty queen and fashion model, and on top of her serious job in the international business field.

‘She is a stunner so there is no confusion that I am her mother – I’m sometimes asked if we are sisters but that has only been to flatter me obviously.’

The mother-of-two has revealed how she and her husband still have a ‘hot sex life’, with men often telling Marco that he is ‘a lucky man’

Paivikki says that in order to maintain a youthful physique, you must take yourself out of your comfort zone and to take care of your diet.

She admits that men often think she’s in her late thirties and claim that her husband is a ‘lucky man’.

She said: ‘It has been on a continuous change all along; that is the key to maintain youthfulness plus I always have friends in different age groups.’

‘I have always supported female entrepreneurs and they have asked me to participate in catwalks and fashion photoshoots.

‘Since I research and lecture in business, leadership and management, I love small businesses and to empower female entrepreneurship.

Paivikki continues to push herself out of her comfort zone, and believes challenging herself has been key to her youthful appearance

‘[I’ve achieved my youthful appearance] Through good self-esteem and the urge to stay out of my comfort zone, by challenging myself to develop new skills in academia.’

She added that people are often surprised when she reveals her real age, saying: ‘[Men often say] “I thought you were in your thirties” or “your hubby is a lucky man”.’

Meanwhile Paivikki advised others should push themselves in order to achieve the results they want, revealing: ‘[My advice is to] Take yourself out of your comfort zone because if you stay there you will not develop at any level the retention begins at comfort zone.

‘Start with your diet; it is eighty per cent of everything. The key to healthy ageing is physical movement and whatever exercise that makes you move your body will profit you with endorphins, which according to research also supports your mental health.’ 

Source: Read Full Article


How Man Utd could line-up against Bournemouth with Pogba and Fernandes DOUBTS after training clash

MANCHESTER UNITED host Bournemouth on Saturday afternoon hoping to keep up their remarkable momentum – but they may have to do so without Paul Pogba or Bruno Fernandes.

The pair were involved in an accidental collision during training on Friday.

And while Manchester United refused to comment on the severity of the injuries sustained, it is thought both players are doubts for the clash at Old Trafford after limping off at Carrington.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side haven't looked back since signing Fernandes in January and are currently unbeaten in 15 matches in all competitions – and could climb into the top four with another win.

Chelsea's dismal 3-2 defeat at West Ham in midweek leaves them just two points above the Red Devils, who could profit with a win at home against a Cherries side that have lost all three games since the restart and sit precariously in 19th.

In fact, with Chelsea and other top-four rivals Wolves not playing until the evening, United could pile the pressure on by leapfrogging the Blues into fourth, at least for a few hours.

Even before the news of his midfield nightmare, Solskjaer hinted at possible rotation in the build-up to the match.

He said: "We’ve got many games coming up and we’ll keep chopping and changing and players are getting better and better – the ones who haven’t played.

"Paul [Pogba], Marcus [Rashford] they’re getting sharper, Mason [Greenwood] is improving all the time and, of course, we’ve got players that didn’t start that have had a fantastic season."

Despite this public backing of his squad, Solskjaer appears to have struck upon a winning formula in the league – having named the same side against Brighton and Sheffield United.

And he undoubtedly would have wanted to stick to this formula as much as possible – starting with David de Gea between the sticks.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw are likely to be the full-backs, although don't be surprised if the versatile and talented Brandon Williams fills in on either side – perhaps from the bench.

MAN UTD NEWS LIVE: Follow for the latest United news

Eric Bailly started in the FA Cup against Norwich, but Victor Lindelof appears to be Solskjaer's preferred partner for Harry Maguire.

Solskjaer has promoted 18-year-old Ethan Laird into the first-team set-up with Phil Jones and Axel Tuanzebe injured but the teenage defender is not expected to play against Eddie Howe's strugglers.

Nemanja Matic appears to have found a new lease of life of late – and that could prove pivotal if Pogba is not available to line up alongside Scott McTominay in midfield.

Fred is another player who could be drafted into that vacant slot if needed.

And with Fernandes also at risk of missing the game, Solskjaer will desperately need a creative midfielder to be the link man going forwards.

Jesse Lingard is yet to feature in the league since the season restarted while Juan Mata came on for the final nine minutes against Sheffield United so could get the nod.

Dan James had been a regular starter prior to the lockdown, but his minutes appear to have dwindled, with his manager preferring to use Mason Greenwood on the right flank.

Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial will make up United's deadly attack.

Solskjaer may be talking about "chopping and changing", but with things so tight in the top four tussle with six games remaining – he probably won't be taking too many major gambles.

Even more so if he is forced into changes with two of his main men suddenly and freakishly unavailable.

Source: Read Full Article

TV and Movies

How much does Long Island Medium’s Theresa Caputo make per episode? – The Sun

LONG Island Medium Theresa Caputo reportedly made around $25,000 per episode of her hit TV show.

The show debuted in 2011 and was on air for eight seasons.

Although Long Island Medium finished filming last year, Theresa has enjoyed continued success through her live tours and book deals.

Who is Theresa Caputo?

Theresa Caputo is the star of TLC's Long Island Medium.

She is a TV personality known for her ability to connect with the departed.

The 54-year-old offers readings and spiritual advice in and around her native Long Island.

What does Theresa Caputo do for a living?

Long Island Medium is a show on TLC of which Theresa and her family star in.

Caputo has been entertaining viewers since 2011 with her charisma and her chats with the spirit world.

"Theresa Caputo is an average mom from Long Island in every way except one: she talks to the dead," reads a description on the TLC website.

"Theresa spends her days with her loving family and helping individuals connect to the spirits of their departed loved ones.

"This is not her job… this is her life."

Outside of the show, fans could be waiting a while if they were seeking to secure a reading with the reality star.

The price ranges from $50 to $175, "depending on if it’s a private or group reading," according to Caputo.

She says on her website that "100 percent of the money is donated to charity."

"For group readings that are held in a restaurant, all proceeds are donated to charity," she writes.

"My clients make a donation directly to the charity I support each season."

Caputo also advises fans that "I was booked for two years before the show first aired, and in addition to that I had a very extended waiting list."

"The people that have emailed, written in or filled out the online form have been added to that list," she said.

How much does she make per episode of Long Island Medium?

According to Nicki Swift, Theresa reportedly made around $25,000 per episode of Long Island Medium.

With well over 100 episodes filmed since it debuted, she potentially raked in $2.5million thanks to her hit show.

Aside from the show, Theresa is a New York Times best-selling author and tours around the country with “Theresa Caputo Live the Experience."

"Considering I started this work with just a business card and word of mouth, I pinch myself when I think about what a crazy ride it’s been for a typical Long Island mom!” she writes on her site.

After years of success, her total estimated net worth is calculated at $3million.

Is Therea Caputo married?

Theresa was married to Larry Caputo for 30 years before the two called it quits.

The two were divorced in 2018.

The former couple – who remained friends after their divorce – broke things off after Larry claimed that they were no longer spending time together.

“This is a grieving process, but things weren’t the same that they were 34 years ago," she told Us Weekly last year.

"So, of course, I miss that aspect. But the way that things were at the end, no – I don’t miss that.”

She was asked by the outlet if she would get married again.

“I never thought of it, and I have to say I don’t know. Right now, I would have to say no,” she told Us Weekly.

On an episode of Long Island Medium, he once ranted to his friends about what had gone wrong.

Larry said: "We're having a difficult time. I think a lot of the frustration has to do with us not spending the time together anymore.

"Along with that comes the lack of communication so it's like losing your best friend. It's hard."

He continued: "As much as I try to busy myself so I'm not thinking about it, it's still there.

Caputo revealed earlier this month that she is going to spill on her divorce from her ex-husband Larry in a memoir.

Titled Good Mourning, the book will feature insight into Theresa’s split from her husband, as well as her tips “moving through everyday losses.”

The book will be released on October 6.

Source: Read Full Article

World News

How Ghislaine Maxwell once hosted oral sex-themed dinner for New York ‘elite’ with sex toys at every table

GHISLAINE Maxwell hosted a sex-themed dinner for New York's elite with sex toys at every table, it is claimed.

The socialite, who was yesterday arrested on sex trafficking charges at a luxury bolthole in New Hampshire, threw the sordid bash in Manhattan's swanky Upper East Side.

According to Vanity Fair, Maxwell placed a sex toy at each place setting at the audacious party.

The theme reportedly centred around oral sex.

Maxwell lived in Jeffrey Epstein's palatial home on the Upper East Side but it is not clear where the party was held.

Her former townhouse in the same affluent area was sold for $15 million in 2016, by a company with the same address as Epstein's New York office.

She has now been accused of grooming underage girls for the paedo tycoon at the townhouse – as well as at his homes in Florida, New Mexico and Maxwell's home in London from 1994 to 1997.

Maxwell's sensational arrest has sent shockwaves through Epstein's elite inner circle.

It's been reported the Brit socialite will be "naming names" after being hauled before a judge on shocking child sex abuse charges.

Maxwell will be "fully cooperating" with the FBI in their investigation into the secret world of the shamed financial tycoon, say reports.

And that could spell bad news for those who have spent years trying to distance themselves from shamed Epstein.

The co- author of 'A Convenient Death: The Mysterious Demise of Jeffrey Epstein' said some would be terrified in the wake of Maxwell's arrest

"I think that a lot of the friends of Jeffrey Epstein who were very relieved after he died are probably pretty terrified at this moment," said Alana Goodman.

"Epstein is dead … she (Maxwell) doesn't really have to worry about protecting him or anything else at this point."

The former hedge-fund manager kept his client list under wraps, but he often bragged of his elite social circle which included movie stars, presidents and at least two royals.

Maxwell, who became a confidante of Jeffrey Epstein, has been accused of being Epstein's "pimp".

She was arrested in Bedford, New Hampshire on charges she conspired with Epstein to sexually abuse minors.

Maxwell appeared briefly by video from jail at a hearing in New Hampshire federal court, where a judge ordered her to face the criminal charges in New York.

She spoke briefly, answering “yes” when asked if she knew her rights. Her lawyer, Larry Vogelman, declined further comment on her behalf.

Prosecutors said she was a flight risk and asked that she be detained without bail. They said she faces up to 35 years in prison.

She is charged with four criminal counts related to procuring and transporting minors for illegal sex acts and two of perjury, according to the indictment by federal prosecutors in New York.

“Maxwell was among Epstein’s closest associates and helped him exploit girls who were as young as 14 years old,” said acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss.

“Maxwell played a critical role in helping Epstein to identify, befriend and groom minor victims for abuse. In some cases, Maxwell participated in the abuse herself.”

Epstein was awaiting trial on federal charges of trafficking minors between 2002 and 2005 when he was found hanged in an apparent suicide while in a New York City jail in August aged 66.

Source: Read Full Article

World News

How Fourth of July in 2020 will be unlike any other: no beach, no booze, no BBQ

Mayor of Wildwood on New Jersey beaches staying open ahead of July 4th weekend

Mayor Pete Byron gives an update on ‘Fox & Friends First.’

The coronavirus pandemic has ensured that not only will 2020 be a year for the history books, but that Americans will be celebrating a Fourth of July like no other.

Only a month ago, states had started to ease back lockdown measures after flattening the curve. People were talking about barbecues on the beach and watching baseball on July 4th – a “return to normal” as much as any other, but more so on America’s birthday.

Such hopes started to fade as several states started to note spikes in new cases, culminating in over a week of record-breaking numbers. Florida alone set a national record when it reported just over 10,000 new cases on July 2. In 40 of the 50 states, coronavirus cases are rising, with Nebraska and South Dakota the only states outside the Northeast with a downward trend in cases, according to the Associated Press.


President Donald Trump plans to press on in South Dakota with a July 4th celebration at Mount Rushmore — complete with fireworks — but most states will have adjusted celebrations.

Here are some of the ways this year’s celebrations will be very different than in previous years.


With the holiday looming, July 4th calls to mind images of beach barbecues and fun in the sun. Beaches in the Northwest and Northeast have largely remained open for the holiday weekend, but they are not the usual hotspots for vacation and celebrations, and people might have to make do.

Florida has become the hardest-hit state in the country, and it was the most ambitious in achieving a return to normal. After pushing to host the Republican National Convention, the state instead has seen several counties push for certain closures – most prominently, beaches in South Florida.

The beach closures in Miami-Dade, Palm Beach, Indian River County and Martin County are in place only for the holiday weekend, a time when the state normally sees a surge in activity. Beaches in Central Florida largely remain open, though. Gov. Ron DeSantis continues to push for reopening, saying the state is "not going back" on the plan. He even openly questioned the beach closures, speculating that keeping people indoors over the weekend might actually exacerbate the infection rates.

California has also seen several beach closures, including L.A. state beaches and San Diego beaches, as has Michigan, though in smaller numbers. Texas went a step further, closing down any outdoor tubing and rafting businesses.



One of the main concerns that experts pointed to in order to explain the sharp rise in cases was the skew toward younger people for newly infected. The average age of those infected by the virus dropped from 48 to 39.

Younger people ventured out for nights in the club or at the bar, so states moved to squash that as an option. In some states, the most obvious measure to take in order to discourage the spread of the virus was to close bars or ban alcohol sales.

Several states, including Colorado and California, have moved to outright close down bars. California Gov. Gavin Newsom ordered bars closed in several counties, including Fresno, Kings and Los Angeles, with an advisory for closures in several others.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott required any restaurant that makes most of its money (51 percent or more) from alcohol sales to close outright as well.

Pennsylvania was the only state to initially ban the sale of alcohol outright across the state, but it slowly repealed that measure after reassessing in the face of criticism. When the state started to see a rise in cases again, Allegheny County in Western Pennsylvania took steps to ban the sale of alcohol for on-site drinking.



In some states, it will be nearly impossible to gather outside at all to celebrate. In Texas, Gov. Abbott banned gatherings of more than 10 people ahead of the July 4th weekend but had allowed certain exceptions with local government approval. Abbott remains keen to reopening the economy but recognized the need to prevent a possible spike from the holiday weekend.

“We have the ability to keep businesses open and move our economy forward so that Texans can continue to earn a paycheck, but it requires each of us to do our part to protect one another—and that means wearing a face covering in public spaces,” the Republican governor said in a statement.

Some states have taken a softer approach, instead urging residents to remain at home to celebrate rather than outright banning gatherings, as they did in Oregon.

In cases in which gathering does occur, such as in Nebraska, state leaders have asked that hosts keep a gues list to aid in contact tracing efforts.

KTVB in Boise asked the question "What Can You Do This Fourth of July in Idaho?" The main answer was to social distance, no matter what the occasion, but the report listed a number of cancellations to parades and fireworks, which frequently invite large gatherings.

Ohio has indefinitely extended its ban on mass-gatherings (meaning any gathering of 10 or more people outside of a household) through July, and has mandated further social-distancing measures for businesses.



After beaches and barbecues, the most iconic moment of any July 4th celebration is a fireworks display to end the night. After the weeks of unscheduled fireworks late into the night across the country, some people might not be so heartbroken to hear that the usual displays for July 4th have been canceled in a number of states.

California delivered the final blow to holiday plans by canceling any fireworks shows across the state.

New York has taken a decentralized approach to fireworks, announcing only an hour ahead of time when it will host smaller displays.

Some cities and counties in Idaho have also canceled their fireworks displays, though parades and other festivities will continue as planned in certain areas unless the state has failed to move out of Stage 4 reopening.



When the beaches and bars are closed, going out for dinner is an option. The coronavirus has forced most states to close down restaurants or allow limited reopenings, and for many, that will not change.

Most states have entered at least a Phase 2 reopening, which allows outdoor seating for restaurants, such as in New York, or limited indoor capacity. States including Virginia, New Jersey, New York, New Mexico and Mississippi have announced a pause to their plans to progress to the next phase or specifically to open up indoor dining.

As Arizona continues to suffer under the strain of the virus, Gov. Doug Ducey has pushed through a measure to discourage large gatherings. In addition to ceasing the issue of any new special event licenses, he has put a pause on the operations of large, indoor public spaces such as gyms, movie theaters, bars and waterparks, effective for one month from June 29.

California also closed down indoor operations for restaurants, movie theaters, zoos and museums, among other businesses starting July 1.



Most states are keen to continue reopening businesses for the sake of the economy, but recognize the need for some safety measures to help the recovery. The use of face masks has been continually touted as one of the most effective means of maintaining safety while easing back other measures, and some states have embraced that hope more so than others.

Texas instituted a mandatory face mask measure, as has Nevada, Oregon and North Carolina, joining New York, Delaware, Connecticut, Illinois and Washington. Gov. Abbott issued the order on July 2, requiring masks worn in any county with 20 or more positive COVID-19 cases.

Oregon had to place a state trooper on leave after he was caught on video refusing to wear his mask, saying that the mandate to wear one violated his "civil liberties," according to the Salem Statesman Journal.


America has around 2.8 million confirmed cases of coronavirus, with around 131,000 deaths.

The Associated Press and Morgan Phillips contributed to this report. 

Source: Read Full Article

TV and Movies

How Does 'Days of our Lives' Still Have New Episodes After Nearly Being Canceled?

They are often maligned, but there are people all over the world who love soap operas. Fans of the genre become heavily invested in their favorite families and the dramatic storylines, religiously tuning in week after week. One of the most popular and longest-running soap operas on television is Days of Our Lives.

The show has been on the air for decades, becoming a mainstay in television entertainment. With the COVID-19 pandemic changing the entertainment industry for the foreseeable future, many fans are starting to wonder whether they will ever get to enjoy new episodes of Days of Our Lives, and when they can expect to see them. 

When did ‘Days of Our Lives’ debut on television?

The mid-sixties might have been a turbulent time for the world in general, but for television, it is widely considered to be the “golden age.” Days of Our Lives premiered on TV in 1965, and has been a constant ever since.

Over the years, the show has gone through a number of shakeups in format and cast, but originally, the show focused primarily on two families, the Hortons and the Bradys.

Set in the town of Salem, Days of Our Lives has featured several actors that have appeared on the show for decades, including veteran actress Suzanne Rogers. The show has been parodied many times over the years, with sketch comedy shows like Saturday Night Live offering up their own take on the dramatics featured on the program. Still, fans love the show, and it remains one of the most popular programs on television to this day. 

Did ‘Days of Our Lives’ almost get canceled?

RELATED: ‘Days of our Lives’ Fans Want More of Jennifer and Jack

After over four decades on television, there are bound to be a number of rumors regarding Days of Our Lives. Most recently, there was a rumor that started circulating in late 2019 that the show was getting the ax from the network, in response to reports that the network was in intense negotiations with showrunners. Fans were terrified and took to social media to express their fear that their favorite soap opera would soon be no more.

Still, the actors and actresses on Days of Our Lives were quick to dispel the rumors, responding to many fans on social media to let them know that they weren’t going anywhere and had not been released from their contracts. Then, in early 2020, it was officially announced by the network that Days of Our Lives would be returning for a new season and that the show had been renewed through the year 2021. 

How did COVID-19 affect ‘Days of Our Lives’?

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many TV shows are being forced to change their broadcast lineup, or to delay their upcoming seasons indefinitely. Fortunately for fans, Days of Our Lives will be minimally affected by the pandemic.

Reportedly, according to Deadline, showrunners actually have enough episodes filmed and ready that they will be able to treat fans to new episodes throughout the summer and into fall with very little change to their production schedule — in spite of the fact that production has been forced to shut down. Most soap operas are not so far ahead and will be forced to air reruns during summer. 

With the cast and crew of Days of Our Lives on indefinite hiatus, along with the production crews on almost all other TV shows, there is no word on when production might be able to resume.

Still, fans can rest easy that they will be able to enjoy new episodes of the show all throughout the summer. As to what fans can expect to see from these new summer episodes, previews have teased “four must-see weddings,” as well as reunions, confrontations, and a new baby.

Source: Read Full Article

World News

Mother tells how her leg 'blew up like a balloon' after 'adder bite'

Terrified mother-of-two tells how her leg ‘blew up like a balloon’ after she was bitten ‘by an adder’ while cleaning her son’s paddling pool

  • Charlotte Brown, 38, was left in agony after an adder bit her in Berriew in Powys
  • Mrs Brown thought she had been bitten by horse-fly but her right leg swelled up
  • Husband Ricky, 35, took her to hospital and doctors said it could have been fatal

A terrified mother of-two has told how her leg ‘blew up like a balloon’ after she was bitten ‘by an adder’ while cleaning her son’s paddling pool.

Charlotte Brown, 38, was left in agony after the snake emerged from under the pool and sank its fangs into her leg in Berriew, Powys, on Tuesday.

Mrs Brown thought she had been bitten by a horse-fly but within hours her right leg had swollen to almost twice its normal size.

Husband Ricky, 35, rushed her to hospital the next day and doctors told her the bite could have caused a potentially fatal blood clot.

Mrs Brown thought she had been bitten by a horse-fly but within hours her right leg had swollen to almost twice its normal size (left and right)

Charlotte Brown (pictured), 38, was left in agony after the snake emerged from under the pool and sank its fangs into her leg in Berriew, Powys, on Tuesday

Mrs Brown, who lives with husband Ricky and their two sons Lewis, 15, and Sam (pictured with his mother in the pool), 11, first called a doctor who initially prescribed her with antibiotics

NHS carer Mrs Brown said: ‘We’ve got one of these really big paddling pools. If you’re small you could do a couple of laps in there.

‘My son had it out through the first half of the year. It had gone all green and manky so I thought I would clean it.

‘I was scrubbing the pool and getting out any bits of dirty water. I didn’t really notice anything but halfway through the cleaning, I noticed that my leg had quite a lot of blood on it.

British adder: The UK’s only venomous snake

The adder is the only venomous snake native to Britain.

They have the most highly developed venom injecting mechanism of all snakes, but they are not aggressive animals.

The adder is the only venomous snake native to Britain

Adders will only use venom as a last means of defence, usually if caught or trodden on.

No one has died from adder bite in Britain for over 20 years.

With proper treatment, the worst effects are nausea and drowsiness, followed by severe swelling and bruising in the area of the bite.

Source: Forestry Commission

‘I thought it was a horse-fly, but it was a lot of blood for that. I carried on and didn’t really think much of it.

‘My mother-in-law came back from a walk and just said to put some vinegar on it. It didn’t look right, but I got changed and I went to work.

‘I walked about 10 minutes to get to the house for the person I care for and put them to bed. It felt as if a jelly was on top of my foot. It was swelling up.

‘The pain was quite bad, it felt like a really nasty Chinese burn. It swelled up really quickly and was past my ankle.’

She added: ‘We have quite extensive training on wounds and swelling so I knew it wasn’t right.’

Mrs Brown, who lives with husband Ricky and their two sons Lewis, 15, and Sam, 11, first called a doctor who initially prescribed her with antibiotics.

She claimed: ‘I couldn’t get the doctors to take me seriously. She said, ”It won’t be venomous, we don’t have any venomous snakes in this country. Carry on with the antibiotics”.

‘I just went to sleep. My husband then woke me up and said ”We’re going to do something about your leg as it is getting worse and worse and it’s going a funny colour”.’

He rushed her to the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital in Shropshire, some 22 miles away, and she was taken into A&E.

Mrs Brown said: ‘They did regular blood checks and gave me anti-venom but they told me it carried a risk of people going into anaphylactic shock.

‘They also said the bite could cause blood clots which could cause heart attacks so I was very worried. I couldn’t believe I could die from a little snake bite in Wales.

‘I had loads of little blisters and my skin felt so tight. It was like my foot was on fire and my calf had blown up like a balloon.’

The NHS worker said a consultant looked at her leg and told her it was a ‘typical reaction to snake venom’.

She said he put her on a drip of anti-venom and she stayed in hospital for two nights as the swelling went down.

The NHS worker (pictured with son Sam) said a consultant looked at her leg and told her it was a ‘typical reaction to snake venom’

She added: ‘It was unbelievable. Anti-venom is underused in this country. Because of the high risk of anaphylaxis.

‘I don’t blame the snake, it’s not their fault. It was probably cooling in some shade underneath my pool.

‘He probably lives in the field right next to us, which is quite a good habitat right behind our garden. It was definitely an adder as the anti-venom got to work straight away.’

Source: Read Full Article

World News

How women-hating Incels are plotting RIOTS in warped interpretation of Black Lives Matter to 'ban females from cities'

TWISTED “incels” are plotting to “attack embassies” and “ban women from cities" in a twisted interpretation of the Black Lives Matter cause.

The term “incel” means involuntary celibate and refers to a dark online community of young male virgins who hate girls and praise mass murderers.

Internet forums dedicated to the troubled thoughts of these disturbed men often contain misogyny, racism and openly discuss acts of violence against women.

Incel-related violence has been linked to at least 53 deaths in recent years, according to the Daily Beast.

And in one of the most popular incel discussion boards, some of the community talked about “banding together” and unleashing violence on the streets to emulate Black Lives Matter.

But while the BLM movement has been inspired by police violence against Black people, the 'cause' self-loathing incels are promoting appears to be driven solely by their hatred of women.

The recent thread on the forum was titled “The recent protests & riots have proven one thing: Violence actually works.”

We’d need to heavily organise this. The incel problem is an international one

One user wrote: “…the BLM strategy has been effective. Burn & loot a couple cities, and the politicians and corporations will start to do whatever the f*** you want them to do, it's pretty amazing.

“Imagine if incels banded together and did the same exact ѕhit these BLM people are doing?”

Another forum member, whose avatar picture is of Ricardo López – a crazed stalker who sent a letter bomb to singer Bjork before killing himself – suggested organising a worldwide incel movement.

He wrote: “We’d need to heavily organise this. The incel problem is an international one. A group of incels, in America for example, could band together and riot.

“We could organise it so that incels from different countries met up…

“Incels from England banded together. Incels from Poland banded together. Incels from the Philippines banded together. So on and so on.

“Maybe we could impact the world if each of those groups of incels rioted in their national country and also attacked embassies. It would devastate all countries.

“Some countries would be more lenient and accept our demands while some other countries would probably kill the protestors.

“At least if some countries cave in to our demands, that can still be considered a win.”

While is not clear what their twisted demands would be another recent thread of the forum discussed “banning women from cities.”


The opening comment read: “Cities should just be toll areas directly connecting freeways with skyscrapers.

There should be walls around it and no clubs, no mcdonalds or any of that. So women cant congregate in wh**e arenas…”

Other posters suggest sending women to war zones in the Middle East to be used as “cannon fodder.”

Another said: “They should be slaves. That's it.”

The community gained worldwide attention when British-born student Elliot Rodger, 22, murdered six people at the University of California in 2014.

The warped motive behind the killings were exposed in a chilling YouTube video and in a “massacre manifesto” in which he mentioned girls such as model Monette Moio, 20, who he called an "evil bitch" for spurning his advances.

Rodgers’ actions and the sick words in his manifesto are believed to have inspired at least three other mass murders in North America,

The most infamous of these was carried out by Alek Minassian, 25,who killed 10 people when he ploughing through pedestrians in a rented van in Toronto, Canada.

In a disturbing Facebook post, before the massacre, Minassian said an “Incel Rebellion has begun” while also praising Rodgers as a “Supreme Gentlemen.”

What is an incel?

Involuntary celibacy, often shortened to incel, is a term used to describe a person who can't have sex despite wanting to, according to incels.

The term also extends to people who believe they have no possibility of finding a partner to get love, validation or acceptance from.

The community is predominately male and the forum suggests women have readily available access to sex as do gay men.

However, the movement was initially started by a Canadian woman known as Alana.

Some people who identify as incels blame attractive men and women for their perceived state – a belief that has lead to several mass killings in the US.

The group dub people who are able to have normal sexual relationships as "normies" and have divisions within their community as to when someone can be classified as an incel.

He has gained notoriety in the community for posing as a male model on dating sites and then filming his disturbing encounters with women.

This comes as a suspected incel accidentally blew his own hand off while making an explosive device that may have been designed to kill "hot cheerleaders," according to reports last month,

Cole Carini, 23, of Richlands, arrived at the Clinch Valley Medical Center with a missing hand and shrapnel wounds on his neck and throat.

Several fingers on his other hand were also ripped off, which he told medics was caused by a lawnmower accident. 

But a cop who arrived at the hospital to interview Carini became suspicious after learning of his previous convictions for explosives. 

Police obtained a warrant to search Carini's home and alerted the FBI.

They discovered drops of blood leading from a minivan outside the residence to a bedroom on the second floor of the house.  

According to an arrest affidavit, investigators found "a piece of human skin" and "a skin colored chunk believed to be flesh" inside that bedroom. 

On June 8, it was reported that Carini had been charged with lying to federal authorities about the explosives and his injures.

Source: Read Full Article