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The morning Odds & Ends

LEMOORE, Calif. Fed up with students racy moves, a principal has taken the unusual step of canceling the rest of this years school dances.Principal Jim Bennett of Lemoore Union High School said he warned students at a winter formal dance last month to either quit dirty dancing or face the possibility of not dancing at all.But he said the students continued freak dancing, a form of sexually suggestive dancing that involves grinding the hips and pelvic area.The ban on dances includes the schools Sadie Hawkins dance in February and the junior and senior proms in the spring, but Bennett said they could be rescheduled if students modify their behavior.Its really up to the kids at this point. They have to take some responsibility, Bennett said.Organizers of the Sadie Hawkins dance, a fund-raiser for the schools FFA Organization branch, formerly Future Farmers of America, are working with Bennett to come up with a series of regulations, which could allow that dance to go on.One idea is to let students sign a form stating that raunchy dancing will get them kicked out.Students hope similar regulations could lead to the reinstatement of other dances, particularly the prom.Some students save up all year to buy a dress or rent a tuxedo and buy flowers for the prom, said student body president Zohra Lakhani, a 17-year-old senior. To crush everyones dreams, its not fair.

ORFORD, N.H. The group that represents New Hampshire maple syrup producers is making plans for the mother of all sap houses a maple sugar museum.The New Hampshire Maple Producers Association has received a gift of the largest collection of antique sugaring tools and equipment in North America, and is trying to find a place to put it.Its vice president, Peter Thomson, says money is being raised to provide a fire-safe building to temporarily store the artifacts while the group plans a permanent museum.The collection is a gift from Charlie Stewart, of Sugar Hill, who has been collecting the artifacts for many years, Thomson said.We need to get the artifacts out of his barn and into a container, and we need to catalog everything so we know what we have, Thomson said.This collection is a real jewel, and its worth a great deal of money, Thomson said. New Hampshire is lucky to have it.Stewart spent years going to auctions and visiting antique stores to build the collection. Hes got over 200 sap yokes of every different size, Thomson said. The yokes, which were used to carry buckets of sap, would sell in antique stores for $300 to $400, depending on the size.

ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. A man was arrested on charges he made dozens of obscene phone calls from an unexpected place a hospital intensive care waiting room.Hank Steve Williams, 38, was charged Thursday with 38 counts of telephone harassment.Officials said the suspect, who is not an employee of Sycamore Shoals Hospital, made the calls to at least five different women he didnt know over the past two months.He really had reached a comfort zone, said Elizabethton Police Capt. Mike Peters. He knew the calls wouldnt be traced back to his number and he developed a pattern of making calls between 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. on weekdays and noon and 2 p.m. on weekends.Investigators arrested Williams after a surveillance camera allegedly caught him using the waiting room phone. Other evidence indicates such calls had been coming from the hospital since 2002, they said.Peters said the investigation still has not revealed how Williams got his information about the names and numbers of the victims he called.Sheriff John Henson sympathized with the victims. Its a scary feeling when someone you dont know calls you and knows your name and number.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico It will take a lot of huffing and puffing to light this stogie.A cigar maker here has hand-rolled a 62-foot-long cigar, which would be the worlds largest if confirmed by the Guinness Book of Records.Patricio Pena, 43, took about four days to manufacture the cigar in a plaza outside a farmers market in the Santurce district of San Juan, finishing the project late Saturday.A friend of mine came up to me recently, and said why dont you try and make the worlds largest cigar? Pena said standing over the creation, which spanned the length of about a dozen tables.Pena is attempting to displace Cuba the king of cigar-making as the home of the worlds largest cigar. The current Guinness record-holder is Jose Castelar Cairo of Havana who made a 45-foot-long cigar in August of 2003.Pena, originally from the Dominican Republic, first started rolling cigars at the age of 7, and has continued the practice in Puerto Rico, where he has lived for the past three decades. He has a stand outside the market where he rolls regular-sized cigars.


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