Vermont Foliage Report: Near-peak to full color arrives in Northeast Kingdom

first_imgFor more information, visit www.VermontVacation.com(link is external). The foliage change appeared to slow to a near standstill during the misty, atmospheric weather of this past weekend.  But with a frosty night or two before the coming weekend and sunny weather forecast through Monday, near-peak to full color change is expected along the spine of the Green Mountains and will begin to emerge in the mountain valleys. Ray Toolan, who reports from Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, observes a variety of foliage in the area. ‘Not a great deal of change from last week, most likely due to the wet weather. Still, we have a lot of variation, with the best colors in the higher elevations and around swamps and wetlands. In many places mid-slope forests are still in early stages while other areas are at or just past peak. Pretty much any of the paved roads in Lamoille and Orleans counties are showing nice color,’ Toolan says. Elsewhere, expect various stages of color across the state, including the mountain and river valleys where the foliage change ranges from early to mid-stage. The foothills east and south of Burlington are at mid-stage, reports Forester Keith Thompson. ‘The highlights are Jericho, Underhill and Huntington. It’s not as far along near the lake,’ Thompson says. ‘Overall a full array of vibrant fall colors are popping out from Middlebury Gap south to Killington, Bridgewater south to Ludlow, and Rutland south to Mt. Taber,’  reports spotter Tom Olson from the Maple Museum. The cooler temperatures are also moving the color change in the lower Champlain Valley and the foothills of the Taconic and Green Mountains into mid-stage, while the red maples in marshy areas are nearing peak. ‘Look for brilliant shades of red, yellow and gold in these areas,’ says Olson. In southern Vermont mid-stage color predominates along the higher elevations while the early stages prevail in the valleys where swampy areas are splashed with the crimson of red maples. For current road conditions and detailed planning information, please check our frequently updated map:  http://www.vermontvacation.com/vtopenforbusiness.htm(link is external) Best Bets: In northern Vermont, recommended scenic routes for peak color viewing include Route 114 between Lyndonville and Norton, Route 58 from Irasburg to Montgomery Center, Route 105 from North Troy to East Charleston, and Route 102 along the Connecticut River. Also try Route 302 east from Barre or Route 232 through the Groton State Forest; Route 2 between Marshfield and Lunenburg, Route 215 in Cabot, and Route 15 between Walden and Cambridge. Also, try back roads in Burke, Peacham, Barnet and Danville, which offer a variety of close-up and long-range views. Vistas from Interstate 89 from South Royalton to Richmond offer . Colorful foliage can also be seen on Route 108 between Stowe and Cambridge, Route 100 between Warren and Stowe, and Route 12 between Montpelier and Elmore. In the area around Rutland mid-stage color is emerging along Routes 7 (Middlebury to Rutland), 30 (Sudbury to Cornwall) and 4 (Rutland to Castleton). Mid-stage to near-peak foliage color is showing at higher elevations: Route 4 west from West Bridgewater to Killington and Sherburne Pass (including the Killington Ski Area Access Rd); Route 103 north from Ludlow to Route 7; Route 140 west from Mt. Holly to Wallingford and Middletown Springs. In southern Vermont where the foliage change ranges from early to mid-stage, suggested drives include Route 11 between Peru and Chester, Route 30 between Winhall and Newfane, Route 7A between Manchester and Bennington, Route 35 from Townshend to Grafton, and Route 9 between Bennington and Brattleboro. The Vermont Hospitality Council advises making advance reservations because the most popular lodgings may fill early on busy weekends during the foliage season. Some innkeepers may require a minimum two-night stay, especially on busy weekends.   Vermont tourism officials encourage visitors to take advantage of midweek specials during the foliage season as part of the statewide ‘Midweek Peek’ promotion. Deals range from discounted lodging to free Vermont products. For details, visit www.VermontVacation.com(link is external) Also available on the website are several tools for planning a Vermont Fall Foliage tour: Fall Foliage ForecasterLodging Availability ForecasterScenic DrivesFall Travel Tips last_img read more

Wendy’s eyes possible breach; NAFCU pushes data standards

first_img 7SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr In light of a possible data breach at the fast-food chain Wendy’s, NAFCU Vice President of Legislative Affairs Brad Thaler on Wednesday urged House and Senate leaders again to support national data security standards for merchants.“Americans’ sensitive financial and personally identifiable information will only be as safe as the weakest link in the security chain,” Thaler wrote in a letter to House and Senate leaders. Thaler pointed out that financial institutions are already subject to data security standards under the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, but merchants are not.Wendy’s has some 6,500 restaurants worldwide. It is investigating claims of a possible data breach at some of its locations that likely occurred late last year, though the details are still unknown, KrebsOnSecurity reported Wednesday.Bob Bertini, spokesman for Wendy’s, told Krebs the company started receiving reports earlier this month from its payment industry contacts about a potential breach and that Wendy’s has a security firm looking into the claims. continue reading »last_img read more

McDowell: McIlroy dynamic changed

first_img McIlroy and McDowell have been regular partners in team events since 2009, winning three of their four matches in the Seve Trophy and also representing Ireland in the World Cup that year and in 2011. The Northern Irish duo have also played six times together in the Ryder Cup, including the very first match at Medinah two years ago, but with a record of t wo wins, three losses and one half, European captain Paul McGinley said they were not a formidable pairing “written in stone”. McIlroy and McDowell have taken half a point from two fourball matches in the Ryder Cup, with two wins and two defeats in foursomes. “Foursomes I think is different. I think we could still play foursomes really well together,” McDowell added. “I love playing off his tee shot, as anyone would, 350 down the middle works everywhere, every week, as he’s shown that lately. “I would really embrace the opportunity to play perhaps foursomes with Rory at some point this weekend. We are both up for it. And like Paul says, though, he feels like I could be best used somewhere else and Rory certainly can play with anyone. We’ll certainly do what’s best for the team.” McIlroy and McDowell were kept apart for the first official practice session on Tuesday, with McIlroy alongside Sergio Garcia and Martin Kaymer while McDowell paired with Victor Dubuisson and Henrik Stenson. It looks increasingly likely that McDowell will partner Dubuisson in the fourballs, with McIlroy and Garcia another possible combination. And although McDowell reiterated that the court case involving McIlroy and his former management company – which McDowell is leaving under far friendlier terms at the end of the year – had made their relationship stronger, he conceded things had changed on the course. “Our personal issues have been well documented the last couple years and I believe that we’ve both come out of the other end of that probably better friends than we were going into it,” McDowell told his pre-event press conference on Tuesday. “So our personal issues are not a problem this weekend, that’s a fact. “I think tactically, Rory and I’s golf dynamic has changed significantly from the first time we ever played together back in 2009 at the Seve Trophy, when perhaps the older brother/younger brother leadership role that maybe I had with him, that’s changed. “He’s the world’s number one player. He’s a four-time major champion (winning the Open and US PGA this year). The dynamic between him and I is changed forever. He would now be the leader of the two of us and perhaps the dynamic doesn’t work as well as it did in the past. “Perhaps I’m the kind of guy that needs that leadership role a little bit, who needs to feel like he is on at least on a level with the guy he’s playing with. “I’ve spoken to McGinley about this as well because he felt like himself and (Padraig) Harrington were the same way. They gelled well as a partnership in their early days, but when Harrington became the star (winning three major titles), the dynamic changed from a tactical point of view. It just didn’t work so well anymore. So I kind of feel that’s kind of the way Rory and I are viewing this week.” McDowell, who was succeeded as US Open champion by McIlroy in 2011, added: “I’ll be the first to admit it. At Medinah a couple of years ago, I found the better ball format very difficult with him because he likes to go first, I let him at it, and I kind of come second. “He’s standing there beating it 350 (yards) down the middle and I put my tee in the ground thinking there’s not really a lot of point in me hitting this tee shot. I find myself throwing myself at it and literally it didn’t help my game much at Medinah playing better-ball with him.” Graeme McDowell admits Rory McIlroy’s status as the biggest name in golf means their Ryder Cup relationship has changed forever. Press Associationlast_img read more

Angels still looking for pitchers and a catcher as winter meetings begin

first_imgLAS VEGAS — When the offseason began, the Angels were looking for pitching, pitching, pitching … and a catcher.Two months later, as MLB’s Winter Meetings begin, not much has changed.Angels general manager Billy Eppler has so far accomplished only a few minor tweaks to his roster, with the heavy lifting still to come.“I feel optimistic that there are things we can do to the club to make us better,” Eppler said before heading to Las Vegas for the winter meetings, which begin officially on Monday. “We’ll see how those lay themselves out in the next week or the coming weeks, and further understand what can be reality and what cannot be reality.” Angels’ Shohei Ohtani spending downtime working in outfield Angels’ Mike Trout working on his defense, thanks to Twitter Angels offense breaks out to split doubleheader with Astros That leaves plenty of room for improvement.Because the Angels probably would like to add multiple starters, it is less likely that they’d go after the top remaining free agent starter, Dallas Keuchel. He will probably command a salary of more than $20 million per year, which would limit what the Angels can do around him.J.A. Happ could also get an annual salary approaching that amount, but for fewer years, because he’s 36.After those two, the list of free agent starters includes pitchers like Gio Gonzalez, Lance Lynn and Japanese left-hander Yusei Kikuchi. Wade Miley, Mike Fiers, Clay Buchholz and Derek Holland also fit for the Angels.The Angels are also no doubt looking at the trade market, with Sonny Gray being the most obvious fit who is certain to be traded. The Angels would also no doubt have interest in Julio Teheran if the Atlanta Braves make him available. They could even make a run at Zack Greinke, who is most certainly available, although the Diamondbacks will have to eat a large chunk of his remaining contract to move him and Greinke is believed to have included most of the California teams in his no-trade clause.Eppler said he’s also looking for relief pitchers, although his history has shown that he is not inclined to spend much on relievers. High-profile relievers like Craig Kimbrel, Kelvin Herrera or Andrew Miller are probably out, but they could look at one of the dozens of lower-level relievers on the market.On the position player side of things, catcher remains their most pressing need. They have José Briceño and Kevan Smith on the 40-man roster, and they signed Dustin Garneau to a minor league deal.Related Articles Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img And what moves are the Angels considering?Keeping his options open, as usual, Eppler narrowed the possibilities only slightly.Sign up for Home Turf and get exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here.“I’d say the the majority of our conversations have surrounded pitching and catching, but we’ve been engaged with some infielders on a couple things,” he said.Although another first baseman to provide some depth behind Albert Pujols – coming off knee surgery – would be a plus, the Angels’ most pressing needs are pitching and a catcher.The starting rotation currently includes Andrew Heaney, Tyler Skaggs, Jaime Barría, Nick Tropeano and Felix Peña. If they want to go big at that position, they could try to trade for J.T. Realmuto. The Marlins are reportedly looking for a major league-ready young player, so the best the Angels could do would be a package based around Matt Thaiss, Taylor Ward or Luis Rengifo.Yasmani Grandal and Wilson Ramos are the top free agent catchers, but both have some defensive red flags, as well as their age. Grandal is 30 and Ramos is 31.If the Angels add anyone who isn’t a pitcher or catcher, it would probably be someone who could play first base. Ideally, that player could play first and another position, so he could fill in for Pujols when he’s not available, but play somewhere else when he is.When any of this happens is anyone guess, although it’s worth noting that in the previous three offseasons that Eppler has been the general manager, he’s added at least one everyday player during the Winter Meetings or shortly after. He picked up Yunel Escobar in 2015, Danny Espinosa and Martín Maldonado in 2016 and Ian Kinsler and Zack Cozart in 2017.“It’s hard to forecast an open market and what you might walk away with from the market,” Eppler said. “We have resources at our disposal. We are looking for a situation where we feel the price of the acquisition and the value added to our run-scoring or run-prevention intersect. When we do, we’ll take that player down.” Jose Suarez’s rocky start sinks Angels in loss to Astros Angels’ poor pitching spoils an Albert Pujols milestone last_img read more

10 things we learned at UFC 239

first_imgJoin DAZN and watch more than 100 fight nights a yearUFC 200 was supposed to be a grand celebration. McGregor was pulled from card after butting heads with the promotion, and two days before the event, Jon Jones was forced off the card after testing positive for a banned substance, scuttling his rematch with Daniel Cormier.UFC 213 was initially scheduled to be headlined by the grudge match between Cody Garbrandt and TJ Dillashaw and after it was scrapped a rematch in the women’s bantamweight division was elevated in its place. However, on the morning of the show, Amanda Nunes was forced out of her bout with Valentina Shevchenko, leaving Robert Whittaker and Yoel Romero battling for the interim middleweight title to close out the show.And last year, featherweight titleholder Max Holloway was deemed unable to compete after giving a stumbling, slurring interview a couple days before he was scheduled to defend his title against Brian Ortega.But this year, this year everything went off without a hitch.Sure, a couple bouts got moved to other locations in the run-up to Saturday’s event and a pair of fighters were pulled from preliminary card bouts, but there were no last-minute changes — no one disappeared from the card on Wednesday or Thursday or Saturday morning.The five bouts that made up the main card at the start of the week were the final five bouts to hit the Octagon inside T-Mobile Arena on Saturday night and it was glorious.Here’s a look at what transpired at UFC 239 and the impact those results will have going forward.1. Jon Jones squeaks out split decision win over Thiago SantosIt was a lot closer than most people anticipated, but Jon Jones walked out of the Octagon with the light heavyweight title still wrapped around his waist, pulling out a split decision win over dangerous Brazilian Thiago Santos. #AndStill the undisputed UFC LHW champion of the world! #UFC239 @JonnyBones || B2YB Nemiroff pic.twitter.com/8UWc70Iqse— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2019 Early in the bout, Santos was the more aggressive, more effective of the two, landing more strikes and having the more effective offense than Jones. But then he tweaked his knee and his effectiveness started to wane, which coincided with the champion starting to press forward and implement his offense a little more.Down the stretch, both men were cautious, with Santos landing the harder shots and Jones countering with greater volume while dictating the terms of engagement. Neither man really stomped on the gas in the championship rounds, sticking to their respective game plans and waiting to see how the scores came out.When the tens and nines were tallied, it was Jones who landed on the happy side of the split, with Santos becoming the first fighter to edge out the long-reigning champion on a scorecard to date.2. Amanda Nunes finishes Holly Holm, cements GOAT statusIf there was any question about Amanda Nunes’ place in the pantheon of all-time greats, “The Lioness” answered those questions in amazing fashion, blasting Holly Holm with a high kick late in the first round of the UFC 239 co-main event. TONIGHT IS UNREAL!@Amanda_Leoa KOs Holm in round 1! #UFC239 pic.twitter.com/UtOTcb8g0Y— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2019 Nunes had already positioned herself as the top female fighter of all time before this contest in the eyes of many, but there is no question now. But this is more than the best run by a female fighter — it’s one of the most impressive stretches by any fighter, period.She’s won nine straight, including wins over the three other women to hold the bantamweight title, two over the reigning flyweight titleholder and featherweight queen Cris Cyborg. Nunes has finished seven of those nine victories, with Valentina Shevchenko the only one to survive to the bell, and six of those stoppages have come inside the first five minutes.This was an incredibly poised, measured performance and a testament to the work Nunes has put in over the last several years to reach her full potential and then blow past it to become one of the greatest fighters of her era.3. Jorge Masvidal crushes Ben Askren with fastest knockout in UFC historyJorge Masvidal and Ben Askren bumped gums at each other all week leading up to their highly anticipated welterweight clash at UFC 239. Standing across the cage from each other as they were being introduced, the jawing continued, and as soon as the fight started, Masvidal went airborne and knocked out Askren with a perfectly placed flying knee. OH MY GOD MASVIDAL STARCHES ASKREN IN 5 SECONDS!!!#UFC239 pic.twitter.com/8oWeqSIBhW— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2019 Officially stopped five seconds into the fight, it was over in two, as Askren dipped in for a takedown and Masvidal caught him flush.This was a statement win for the ages from Masvidal, a fight game lifer who has been a pro for 16 years and underrated for the majority of that time. After blasting Darren Till in March and adding “three piece and a soda” to the MMA lexicon, his profile skyrocketed and Saturday night, “Gamebred” may have earned himself a title shot by re-writing the UFC record book and registering the unquestioned clubhouse leader in the Knockout of the Year race.4. Jan Blachowicz scores massive knockout win over Luke RockholdThroughout the build-up to Saturday’s other main card light heavyweight matchup, I made sure to acknowledge that Jan Blachowicz was a tough test for Luke Rockhold’s divisional debut — a durable, seasoned, sturdy veteran who was on a four-fight winning streak before running into Thiago Santos in February.After staggering Rockhold with a high kick that grazed his head at the close of the first round, the Polish contender detonated a left hand on the former middleweight champion’s chin just over 90 seconds into the middle stanza, bringing the fight to an instantaneous end. JAN BLACHOWICZ!!!! #UFC239 pic.twitter.com/d6Rx1KpsGT— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2019 This was a no-doubt shot that had to feel good for Blachowicz, as Rockhold talked all kind of junk in the buildup to the fight and seemed to already be targeting a championship opportunity before ever competing in the division. He looked completely comfortable from the outset and capitalized as soon as Rockhold gave him an opening, securing the biggest win of his career and vaulting himself back into the thick of the title chase in the process.5. Michael Chiesa mauls overmatched Diego SanchezMichael Chiesa has looked like a force since moving to welterweight, following up his second-round submission win over Carlos Condit with a one-sided mauling of Diego Sanchez in the opening bout of Saturday’s main card. While the uncommonly durable Sanchez failed to relent, Chiesa was in control from start to finish, out-muscling and out-working the veteran in every position, in every round.Chiesa looked considerably larger than Sanchez and spent the entire fight having his way with the first man to enter the fraternity of “The Ultimate Fighter” winners. Every time Sanchez tried to mount some offense, the TUF 15 winner shut it down, rolling through every scramble and returning to a dominant position. Heavy shots landed by Chiesa in round 2! #UFC239🇺🇸 https://t.co/dpllHMlMq8🇬🇧 https://t.co/HxbMrGlCmP pic.twitter.com/2aG2U0zz68— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2019 People will want to chalk this up to the 37-year-old Sanchez being washed and entering the fight without any coaches in his corner, but that’s unfair to Chiesa. This move to welterweight was long overdue and he’s finally starting to show the full compliment of his skills. He’s an outstanding grappler and proving to be an intriguing new addition to the 170-pound ranks. It will be interesting to see where he goes after another outstanding effort.6. Arnold Allen shines in dominant effort against Gilbert MelendezThere have been a number of featherweights who have risen up the ranks and garnered a great deal of hype and acclaim in recent years, but one who has surprisingly stayed under the radar is 25-year-old Brit Arnold Allen. Despite a 5-0 start to his UFC career and a seven-fight winning streak heading into Saturday, the Tristar Gym staple has remained an unheralded member of the emerging class in the 145-pound ranks.Saturday night should change that as Allen walked into the Octagon and put on a clinic against former lightweight standout Gilbert Melendez.From the outset, Allen was the quicker, more powerful fighter, dictating the terms of engagement and largely having his way with the 37-year-old veteran. Throughout the fight, the surging youngster from Suffolk boxed up Melendez, landing at will and slipping out of range as “El Nino” looked to counter. He stayed within himself and kept the pressure on Melendez throughout, piling up the damage rather than chasing a finish. Showcase win for 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 @ArnoldBFA! #UFC239 pic.twitter.com/IurexkiEnY— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2019 This was a standout showing from Allen and the kind of fight that should elevate him into the conversation as one of the top up-and-coming talents not only in the featherweight division, but the UFC as a whole.7. Strong response and submission win for Marlon “Chito” VeraMarlon Vera was supposed to face Sean O’Malley on Saturday night in Las Vegas, but after “Sugar Sean” was forced from the card due to residual issues from his previous positive drug test, “Chito” got paired off with newcomer Nohelin Hernandez. It’s one of those situations where an established fighter can stumble and for a couple minutes in the middle of the contest, it seemed like that was going to be the case.After a strong start that included a beautiful back-take and multiple submission attempts, Hernandez reversed the position and went on the offensive, carrying that over into the opening moments of the second round. But when the newcomer gave Vera a chance to get back to his feet, the 26-year-old bantamweight took full advantage, charging forward and dropping Hernandez with a knee before swiftly climbing on his back and lacing up the choke. Wow!@ChitoVeraUFC turns the tables in round 2 and gets the submission win! #UFC239 pic.twitter.com/ApN6FiRQmK— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2019 Vera has been in the UFC for nearly four years now, but he’s still just 26 and starting to come into his own. This was his fourth consecutive victory and gives him seven wins in his last nine outings. While there are younger, newer names making waves at bantamweight, Vera is a young veteran who shouldn’t be overlooked.8. Song Yadong soon to be a ranked bantamweightFacing the toughest test of his career, Song Yadong delivered his most impressive performance to date, knocking out veteran bantamweight Alejandro Perez in just a shade over two minutes.The duo was originally slated to fight in March, but the 21-year-old Yadong was forced out of the pairing with a knee injury and replaced by Cody Stamann. Saturday night, he made up for lost time by blistering “Turbo” with a clean right hand counter that laid out the TUF: Latin America product, pushing his record to 4-0 inside the Octagon while extending his winning streak to seven. 360-degrees of perfection 😲#UFC239 pic.twitter.com/BtcxsqCr9O— UFC (@ufc) July 7, 2019 Team Alpha Male leader Urijah Faber has been telling everyone Yadong is a future superstar and thus far, he’s justifying Faber’s high praise. The young bantamweight should earn a place in the Top 15 after this performance and seems poised to be the latest “one to watch” in the loaded, competitive 135-pound weight class.9. Edmen Shahbazyan is the goodsEveryone says they’re better than their opponent in every area and that they’re going to run through their next opponent — it’s just how this works — but very seldom do people actually deliver. It’s even less frequent that the one doing the steamrolling is a 21-year-old wrapping up his rookie campaign in the Octagon.Edmen Shahbazyan said he was going to dominate Jack Marshman and on Saturday night, the unbeaten young middleweight dragged Jack Marshman to the canvas and went to work. He started by slinging heavy leather and after passing to side control, Shahbazyan climbed on the Welsh veteran’s back and quickly secured the fight-ending choke. It only took 72 seconds! @EdmenShahbazyan improves to 10-0 at #UFC239 with the first round stoppage! pic.twitter.com/dHhBOjkBS4— UFC (@ufc) July 6, 2019 Now 10-0 as a professional with nine of those victories coming inside the opening three-and-a-half minutes, Shahbazyan is quickly proving himself to be a problem in the middleweight division. It’s impossible to forecast where his ceiling lies at this point because every time you think he’s going to be tested, “The Golden Boy” aces his latest exam and shows another wrinkle to his expanding game.With three wins in his rookie campaign (and four in the last 12 months), Shahbazyan is undeniably one of the top newcomers in the division and one of the brightest prospects on the entire roster.10. An excellent debut for Julia AvilaJulia Avila turned in a dominant effort in her UFC debut, outworking recent TUF finalist Pannie Kianzad in the opening bout of the evening.After a back-and-forth first round, the Oklahoma native cranked up the intensity midway through the second, stinging Kianzad with a powerful combination that backed her into the fence. In the third, Avila dropped the Iranian-born veteran, following her to the canvas where she controlled the action for the remainder of the frame. The annual International Fight Week pay-per-view in Las Vegas is always positioned to be one of the biggest events of the year, but it hasn’t always worked out that way. In fact, more often than naught, something funky has happened to alter the lineup, usually at the 11th hour.Five years ago, Stefan Struve was pulled from the event just prior to his fight after having a panic attack in the dressing room, resulting in UFC 175 featuring a four-fight main card. A year later, Jose Aldo was forced out of his highly anticipated, heavily promoted featherweight title fight with Conor McGregor less than two weeks before the event. Dropped! #UFC239 pic.twitter.com/TfhJDtR6pe— UFC (@ufc) July 6, 2019 While there were little experience miscues along the way, this was an excellent performance for a UFC rookie. Kianzad is a tough out who has faced very good competition throughout her career and Avila outclassed her from start to finish. With a couple more fights, some more seasoning and further improvements, the 31-year-old newcomer could work her way into contention in the bantamweight ranks.last_img read more