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Preview: Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Lifestyle Health, Lifestyle & Advice


United gives $10,000 travel voucher to 'bumped' passenger

Fri, 23 Mar 2018 20:51:44 UT

A passenger who was bumped off a full flight has scored the maximum prize — a $10,000 travel voucher. A spokesman for United Airlines confirmed Friday that a passenger got the big voucher "per our company policy." He declined to name the person. In a series of tweets, Allison Preiss of Washington, D.C., described how she was rewarded after being asked to give up her seat on a Thursday flight. Preiss told The Associated Press she was waiting to board a flight from Dulles Airport outside Washington to Austin, Texas, for a bachelorette party. A broken seat meant the airline had one too many passengers.

Gone extinct: Animatronic T-Rex bursts into flames

Fri, 23 Mar 2018 12:43:11 UT

CANON CITY, Colo. (AP) — The co-owner of a dinosaur-themed park in southern Colorado thinks an electrical malfunction caused a life-size animatronic Tyrannosaurus Rex to burst into flames. Zach Reynolds says the T-Rex at the Royal Gorge Dinosaur Experience smoldered for about 10 minutes before it caught fire Thursday morning. Visitors watched as the inferno spread through the dinosaur, which appeared at times to be breathing flames. Reynolds joked, "We knew he had a temper, but today he blew his top." The 24-foot-tall (7-meter-tall) T-Rex, which moved and made sounds, was one of 16 dinosaurs that line the park's Wild Walk exhibit. Reynolds says it was a total loss but at least "it made for some spectacular imagery along the way.

A record 965 million passengers packed US planes last year

Thu, 22 Mar 2018 22:18:02 UT

A record 965 million airline passengers flew in the United States last year, a 3.4 percent increase over 2016. Figures from the Transportation Department show that air travel has been rising since the Great Recession that ended in 2009. The department said Thursday that air travel within the U.S. rose 3 percent and international traffic to and from the U.S. grew 4.8 percent. Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport had the most passengers, followed by Los Angeles International and Chicago's O'Hare. New York's Kennedy Airport had the most international passengers. Southwest Airlines again carried the most passengers, while Delta Air Lines barely leapfrogged American Airlines for second place.

Tiny Alaska village prepares for its 1st cruise ship visit

Thu, 22 Mar 2018 13:52:53 UT

KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska village of Larsen Bay — with a population of 87 — will have its first luxury cruise ship visit this summer. Kodiak city harbormaster Lon White said it's the first time he can remember a cruise liner visiting one of Kodiak's outlying villages, the Kodiak Daily Mirror reported Wednesday. Village Mayor Alice Aga said the ship's stop will allow residents to supplement their income at a time when the Icicle Seafoods processing plant will be closed. Jobs in the village depend almost entirely on tribal and local government administration when the plant is closed. "The community is really excited," Aga said. "This is a high-end cruise." The SilverSea cruise will be a 12-day Alaska trip costing $9,900 per person.

Chicago sets tourism records in first months of 2018

Thu, 22 Mar 2018 09:44:48 UT

CHICAGO (AP) — Continuing last year's record-setting growth, Chicago set new tourism records in the first months of 2018. Mayor Rahm Emanuel says hotel demand increased by 12.5 percent in January and February alone. He attributes the bulk of the growth to the business sector. The city held more meetings and conventions in the first months of 2018 than it did during the same time period in previous years. The leisure sector also set records for this period. This comes on the heels of unprecedented tourism numbers in 2017, when an estimated 55 million people visited the city. The high number of visitors led to an 11.3 percent increase in hotel revenue per room.

Creatures of the night inhabit Audubon Zoo's newest building

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 17:02:01 UT

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — It's daylight outside, but with indoor lights simulating a full moon, hundreds of bats flap back and forth. On a nearby wall, what appears to be a talking stone face provides bat fun facts. It's the night house at the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans, and it opens Friday. The Associated Press got a preview Tuesday. The centerpiece of the $1.6 million night house is the 42-foot-long (13-meter-long) flight cage for 200 Seba's short-tailed bats — fruit-eating mammals up to 2½ inches (6.4 centimeters) long, with a foot-wide (30 centimeter) wingspan. "It's amazing going in there and having the bats fly by you," animal care staffer Dominique Fleitas said Tuesday. "You can feel the wind as their wings are flapping around you.

High Museum, other Atlanta spots featured in Black Panther

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 16:24:53 UT

The blockbuster movie "Black Panther" depicts a fictional futuristic country in Africa called Wakanda. But fans might be surprised to learn that many location shoots for the film were done in Georgia. Here's a list from Georgia Tourism of destinations in Atlanta and elsewhere in the state that were used as stand-ins for sites in the movie. LONDON, SOUTH KOREA AND NEW YORK In the movie, an axe from Wakanda made of the precious vibranium metal is stolen from the fictional Museum of Great Britain in London. In reality, the exterior shot of the museum in the movie shows Atlanta's High Museum of Art , 1280 Peachtree St. NW.

Maldives former dictator, judges charged with terrorism

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 16:17:06 UT

MALE, Maldives (AP) — Authorities charged the Maldives longtime former dictator and top judges and police officials with terrorism Tuesday as the government deals with political turmoil that prompted a weeks-long state of emergency. The nine people charged at the criminal court included Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, the 30-year ruler of the Indian Ocean archipelago state; Supreme Court Chief Justice Abdulla Saeed and Justice Ali Hameed; four lawmakers including Gayoom's son; and a former police commissioner. Prosecutors did not specify the grounds on which they are charged with terrorism. If convicted, they could be jailed for 10 to 15 years.

Hawaii is drafting new rules for manta ray viewing sites

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 14:17:46 UT

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii (AP) — Hawaii's Department of Land and Natural Resources has drafted rules regarding proposed changes to manta ray viewing sites. The department's Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation crafted the rules with the Big Island specifically in mind, as manta ray excursions represent a multi-million dollar industry in West Hawaii that has gone essentially unregulated, West Hawaii Today reported Tuesday. The draft rules would, among other stipulations, require documentation of manta ray viewing site usage and proof that applicants have established histories of operating tours.

'Black Panther' fans can find glimpses of Wakanda in Africa

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 13:21:28 UT

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Want to go to Wakanda? The blockbuster success of "Black Panther" has created a new, compelling vision of Africa as a continent of smart, technologically savvy people with cool clothes living in a futuristic city amid stunning landscapes. The hidden, high-tech kingdom is fictional, of course. But the movie successfully weaves together many different aspects of the continent to depict Wakanda. For fans who long to visit, there are many real places to consider. "The movie references a lot of different African cultures and tribes," says Meruschka Govender, a "Black Panther" fan who blogs about travel at and calls herself an "African travel activist.

Scenic viewpoints added to Hudson River bridge's rebuilt sidewalk

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 11:32:39 UT

HUDSON, N.Y. (AP) — Scenic viewpoints have been added to the rebuilt sidewalk on one of the New York state-operated bridges spanning the Hudson River between Albany and New York City. Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday three viewpoints, each 50 feet long by 10 feet wide, have been added along the mile-long sidewalk on the Rip Van Winkle Bridge linking Greene and Columbia counties. Known as the Hudson River SkyWalk, the project will feature a pedestrian trail linking historic sites on the opposite sides of the river: the Thomas Cole National Historic Site in Catskill and the Olana State Historic Site in Hudson. Both are key locations for the 19-century landscape painting style known as the Hudson River School.

The Latest: Powerful storm begins moving into California

Wed, 21 Mar 2018 03:26:32 UT

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Latest on a powerful Pacific storm affecting California (all times local): 8 p.m. A powerful Pacific storm is moving into central and southern parts of California, pouring rain as communities besieged by wildfires and mudslides brace for the worst. Between a quarter and a third of an inch of rain was recorded throughout San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties through Tuesday evening. Trace amounts were beginning to fall in some parts of Los Angeles County. The worst of the storm is expected between midday Wednesday through Thursday, bringing 2-5 inches (5-13 centimeters) of rain to coastal areas and valleys, and 5-10 inches (13-25 centimeters) in foothills and mountains.