Michigan to Travel to Purdue, Host Grand Valley State of Miskelley Memorial Meet


» The Wolverines travel to West Lafayette, Ind., to face host Purdue and Missouri on Friday (Nov. 5).

» Michigan also hosts Grand Valley State in a dual Saturday (Nov. 6) at 10:30 a.m. in Canham Natatorium.

» The matchup against GVSU will be the first in the history of the programs.

THIS WEEK

Friday, Nov. 5 — at Purdue November Triple Dual (West Lafayette, Ind.), 2 p.m.

TV: B1G+ | Live Results | Live Video

Saturday, Nov. 6 — host, Ian Miskelley Memorial Meet at University of Michigan (Canham Natatorium), 10:30 a.m.

Live Results

Social Media: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook: Men / Women

The University of Michigan men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams are looking to continue their strong start to the 2021-22 season this weekend, traveling to West Lafayette, Ind., on Friday (Nov. 5) at 2 p.m. to take on host Purdue and Missouri at the Boilermakers’ November Triple Dual, which will be streamed live on B1G+. On Saturday (Nov. 6) at 10:30 a.m., the Wolverines return home to host Grand Valley State for the Ian Miskelley Memorial Meet at Canham Natatorium.

Schedule of Events

at Purdue November Triple Dual – at Purdue, vs. Missouri

Friday (2 p.m.)

200-yard Medley Relay

1000-yard Free

200-yard Free

100-yard Backstroke

100-yard Breaststroke

200-yard Butterfly

50-yard Freestyle

100-yard Freestyle

200-yard Backstroke

200-yard Breaststroke

500-yard Freestyle

100-yard Butterfly

200-yard IM (W) / 400-yard IM (M)

400-yard Freestyle Relay

Ian Miskelley Memorial Meet – vs. Grand Valley State

Saturday (10:30 a.m.)

200-yard Medley Relay

1000-yard Freestyle

200-yard Freestyle

100-yard backstroke

100-yard breaststroke

200-yard butterfly

50-yard freestyle

100-yard Freestyle

200-yard backstroke

200-yard Breaststroke

500-yard Freestyle

100-yard Butterfly

200-yard IM

400-yard Freestyle Relay

One-Meter Diving

Three-Meter Diving

Team Notes

• Michigan is ranked No. 4 (women) and No. 6 (men) in the latest CSCAA/TYR Top 25 Coaches Poll, released in October. The Missouri men enter the weekend at No. 14 while their women come in at No. 20.

• Though an NCAA Division II opponent, the Grand Valley State men’s and women’s teams come into the weekend highly ranked. The men are No. 5 and the women are ranked No. 6 in the DII CSCAA/TYR Top 25 Coaches Poll.

• The U-M men’s swimming and diving team has never lost to Purdue, holding an all-time record of 58-0 against the Boilermakers. The Wolverines will return to West Lafayette in February when Purdue hosts the 2022 Big Ten Championships.

• 2021-22 kicked off with a bang as the Wolverines took first at the SMU Classic on both sides, with the women topping second-place finisher, No. 13 Louisville, by more than 20 points (356-334) and the men beating second-place Louisville, ranked No. 7, by an 11-point margin (336-325).

• The Wolverine women won five events at the Classic and placed in the top three in four more. Kathryn Ackerman, Casey Chung, Maggie MacNeil and Letitia Sim each won events.

• Senior Patrick Callan took first in the 200-yard freestyle, fellow senior Will Chan won the 100-yard breaststroke and sophomore Jake Mitchell won the 500-yard freestyle. They were the only three individual wins for the Wolverines in the two-day event, but they also took first in the 400-yard medley relay, the 800-yard freestyle relay and the 200-yard medley relay.

• Michigan also cruised to victory at home during its opening weekend, topping Oakland 189-105 on the men’s side and 174-117 on the women’s.

Connor Hunt, James LeBuke and diver Cameron Gammage each won multiple events against the Golden Grizzlies, while Claire Newman, Kathryn Shanley, Katii Tang and diver Lucy Hogan won at least two events for the women.

• Several members of the 2021-22 squad were named to the U.S National or Junior National teams. National team members include seniors Patrick Callan and Olivia Carter, and sophomore Jake Mitchell (along with alumni Charlie Swanson), while members of the Junior National Team include freshmen Lindsay Flynn and Letitia Sim.

• Michigan is one of three three combined teams to have active student-athletes on both the men’s and women’s USA National Team.

Opponent Preview

Purdue

• Head Coach: Dan Ross | Diving Coach: Adam Soldati

Men: Purdue has an 0-2 dual record on the season, falling to Big Ten foe Minnesota (121.5-178.5) to start the campaign and Notre Dame (120-180). Sandwiched between the duals was a first-place finish in the Indiana Intercollegiates, which the Boilermakers hosted.

Series:Michigan leads the all-time series 58-0.

Women: The Boilermakers are off to a 1-1 start to the season, falling to No. 25 Notre Dame 81.5-216.5 and beating Big Ten opponent Rutgers 175.5-122.5. Purdue kicked off the 2021-22 campaign with a first-place finish in the Indiana Intercollegiates.

Series: Michigan leads the all-time series 9-2.

Missouri

Head Coach: Andrew Grevers | Diving Coach: Kyle Bogner

Men: The Tigers are 1-0 after a 148-92 victory over Southern Illinois. Missouri also finished third at the SMU Classic with 303 points. Michigan won the SMU Classic (336 points).

Series: First dual meeting

Women: Missouri is 2-0 on the young campaign with a win over Southern Illinois (145-95) and a SEC victory over Arkansas (174.50-125.50). The Tigers also took third place at the SMU Classic, which Michigan won (284 points).

Series: First dual meeting

Grand Valley State

Head Coach: Andy Boyce | Diving Coach: Steve Burciaga

Men: The Lakers have started the season 4-0, having defeated Lewis (151-75), Saginaw Valley State (188-55), Calvin College (157-67) and Northern Michigan (165-135). Grand Valley State also competed in the 2021 Indianapolis Invitational which featured five of the top 15 schools in NCAA Division II. GVSU finished fourth with 642.5 points.

Series: First meeting

Women: Grand Valley State is 3-1 to start the season, defeating Lewis (180-47), Grand Valley State (188-55) and Calvin (156.5-67) while falling to Northern Michigan (129-171). The Lakers also competed in the 2021 Indianapolis Invitational which featured five of the top 15 schools in NCAA Division II and finished fifth with 554 points.

Series: First meeting

Up Next

Wed-Sat., Dec 1-4 — at Minnesota Invitational (Minneapolis, Minn.), 6 p.m. CST





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2021 Memorial Day travel: National Park road trips trend up


Temperatures are rising and you’re thinking about a summer road trip to somewhere with a lot of open space so you won’t be stuck in a stuffy airplane or a crowded hotel lobby, trying to hold your breath.

You are not alone.

For the record:

4:34 p.m. May 17, 2021This article says a forecast predicted that nearly 90% of Southern Californians will travel by car during the Memorial Day weekend. The forecast predicted that nearly 90% of the Southern Californians who travel then will travel by car.

Nearly 90% of Southern Californians will travel by car during the Memorial Day weekend — 7 percentage points higher than before the pandemic, according to the Auto Club of Southern California travel forecast, which was released Tuesday. And three of the five most popular destinations are expected to be national parks.

Two crowded urban destinations, San Francisco and Anaheim, have dropped out of the top five list for the first time in recent memory, primarily because travelers believe that outdoor vacations let them worry less about mask mandates and COVID-19 protocols, Auto Club representatives said.

“People want to have a little more control of their environment, and they can be outdoor in these national parks,” said Auto Club spokesperson Jeffrey Spring.

Before the pandemic, the top five Memorial Day weekend destinations were, in descending order, Las Vegas, San Diego, Grand Canyon National Park, San Francisco and Anaheim. This year, Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks joined the list at No. 1, followed by Sin City, Grand Canyon, San Diego and Yosemite National Park. Anaheim and San Francisco were bumped off by the two additional parks.

The number of Southern Californians planning to travel for the three-day holiday weekend is expected to reach 2.89 million, up 64% compared with last year when COVID-19 death counts and pandemic fears began to climb, according to the Auto Club. Only 1.7 million Southern Californians traveled for the holiday in 2020, representing a 49% drop from 2019.

Among Southern Californians, 9% plan to travel by air for the holiday, compared with only 2% who traveled by airplane in 2020, according to the Auto Club. About 1% of Southern Californians plan to travel for the holiday this year by cruise ship, train or bus. About 10% were forecast to travel by air during the Memorial Day weekend in 2019.

In the U.S., about 37 million Americans plan to travel for the holiday, up 60% from the Memorial Day weekend of 2020, according to the Auto Club.

Eric Leopardi, a former Angeleno who now lives in Denver, said he is planning a road trip with his girlfriend to Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming for the Memorial Day weekend because they feel more comfortable outdoors during the pandemic.

“Since the pandemic our vacations have in fact totally shifted to outdoor areas,” the media company executive said.

In Los Angeles County, where the travel and tourism industry had sparked $36.6 billion in spending annually before the pandemic, visitation numbers have been growing slowly. Based on current trends, the Los Angeles Tourism and Convention Board estimates that the county will welcome about 40 million visitors in 2021, compared with a record 50 million visitors in 2019.

Despite a COVID-19 vaccine rollout that has helped bring to California one of the lowest case rates in the nation, many tourism industry businesses are still hurting.

Danny Roman, who runs Bikes and Hikes tours in West Hollywood, estimates that he is bringing in only about 30% of the business he had before the pandemic. The biggest hit, he said, is the loss of international travelers, who previously represented about 60% of his clients but have nearly disappeared because of pandemic travel restrictions.

In the midst of the pandemic, Roman added a bicycle sales and repair shop to his tour business to make ends meet.

“If I didn’t have this bike shop, I would be panhandling on the corner,” he said.





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Remembering 9/11 through a memorial of searchlights, Travel News & Top Stories – The Straits Times



Remembering 9/11 through a memorial of searchlights, Travel News & Top Stories  The Straits Times



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Traveling This Memorial Day Weekend? Pack Patience.


Last year, for the first time in 20 years, AAA, the automobile owners group, declined to put out its annual Memorial Day travel forecast as the surging coronavirus pandemic kept many people close to home.

Its forecast this year: Travel is back. More than 37 million people are expected to venture 50 or more miles away from home between May 27 and May 31, AAA said. That’s a 60 percent increase from the 23 million who actually traveled last year, the lowest on record since AAA began counting in 2000.

“Americans are demonstrating a strong desire to travel this Memorial Day,” said Paula Twidale, AAA’s senior vice president, in a statement. “This pent-up demand will result in a significant increase in Memorial Day travel, which is a strong indicator for summer.”

The Transportation Security Administration essentially said the same thing at a news conference on Tuesday, when Darby LaJoye, the acting administrator of the T.S.A., warned of longer wait times at some security checkpoints at airports because of the increasing number of passengers. On Sunday, the T.S.A. screened more than 1.8 million people, the most since the coronavirus pandemic began in March 2020.

While the increasing numbers may be good news for the travel industry, which has been among the hardest hit by the pandemic, for travelers they could make things complicated. AAA said that drivers in major cities should be prepared for road trips to be double or triple the length of a normal trip. So many ride-share drivers have stopped working that those relying on ride-sharing apps may face long wait times and prices that are multiples of their usual fares. Hotel rooms are booked up and many destinations are still struggling to hire staff, meaning that stays may be rocky.

Many Americans seem to have booked earlier this year, perhaps spurred by eagerness to get out of the house once they were fully vaccinated. A recent report by the travel technology company Amadeus found that, when the pandemic was at its height, most people were booking within a week of their expected travel, perhaps because it was so hard to make plans. But recently, same-day bookings have been falling, while those for stays 31 to 60 days out have increased. They now make up 11 percent of reservations, compared to 6 percent in the first week of 2021.

The result: a shortage of places to stay, especially in top destinations like the Outer Banks in North Carolina and Cape Cod in Massachusetts.

“We have 19,000 guest rooms, and we expect them to be full this weekend,” said Bill DeSousa-Mauk, a spokesman for the Cape Cod Convention and Visitors Bureau.

“I think we’ll have a completely sold out summer on the Cape this year,” he said. Lodging choices may also be limited because many people who own second homes on the Cape and rented them out in past years have moved, at least somewhat permanently, to the area.

Lee Nettles, the executive director of the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau, said that the area, known for its more than 100 miles of shoreline, is also experiencing a shortage of rental properties.

“Our lodging partners are telling us that they’re getting really close to being sold out” for Memorial Day weekend, Mr. Nettles said. Those looking to stay in the Outer Banks should, he recommends, “contact your lodging providers as quickly as possible.”

The travel industry still has a ways to go. There are nearly six million fewer people traveling this weekend than did so in 2019, according to AAA, and air travel has yet to reach prepandemic levels, largely because business travel has not resumed. Big cities with hotels devoted to conventions are still experiencing low occupancy rates.

But those who are traveling may feel the crunch because of diminished capacity. Hosts on Airbnb have dropped off the platform, and Brian Chesky, Airbnb’s chief executive, recently told CNBC that demand would “probably” outpace the number of available Airbnb listings as travel rebounds. He added that the company would need to add “millions more” hosts in the coming years to keep up.

Campers, too, should brace themselves for what experts said could be the busiest camping season ever, according to data analyzed by the e-commerce company Pattern. The company tracked consumer behavior in 2021 so far compared to the two previous years, and found that the demand for camping tents this spring is already up 97 percent compared to the same period in 2020 and 85 percent compared to 2019.

Jenny Anzelmo-Sarles, a spokeswoman for the National Park Service, said that overnight lodging at many of the system’s top destinations, such as Yosemite, Yellowstone and Grand Teton, is nearly or fully booked through Labor Day. Campsite bookings through Recreation.gov, the government’s reservations system, are up 73 percent compared to this time in 2019, she said.

“One of our top tips is to make sure folks have reservations before they hop in a car for that weekend road trip,” Ms. Anzelmo-Sarles said. “We don’t want people to show up and have nowhere to stay.”

This increased demand is coming at a time when many parks, hotels and food service establishments continue to experience staffing shortages. Over the past 15 months, many hospitality workers have been laid off or have left the industry, and seasonal workers from overseas have been unable to get into the United States.

Ms. Anzelmo-Sarles said travelers may see limited services in parks or in businesses in surrounding communities. And a survey of members of the American Hotel and Lodging Association found that 48 percent of hoteliers have closed or limited food and beverage and other hotel services because of a lack of staff.

The tourism bureaus in Cape Cod and on Michigan’s Mackinac Island said that Covid-19 restrictions have prevented the usual flood of foreign workers who typically help during their busiest seasons from arriving.

“At the moment, there are a lot of owners that are wiping down tables, busing tables, cleaning guest rooms, making beds, doing laundry, because they have to,” Mr. DeSousa-Mauk of the Cape Cod tourism bureau said.

“Logistically, will people who visit be happy coming and having to wait for dinner or if their room’s not ready when they arrive at the hotel?” he added.

But some people said they got ahead of the curve. Christian Asencio, the executive chef and general manager of the Chatham Squire in Chatham, Mass., on Cape Cod, said he “thought ahead about the staffing issue” after facing it last year.

“We put up a bunch of ads,” he said. “I personally contacted chef friends from Maine and chef friends from Florida for seasonal cooks, and they were able to send me a whole army of cooks and servers.”

Bill Catania, who owns the Cape Codder Resort and Spa, in Hyannis, said that keeping a core staff helped him prepare for the surge in travelers over the last few weeks.

“Fortunately we had a strong base staff to start with, so we’re able to get it done. It’s just a lot harder to do,” Mr. Catania said, adding that accessibility to certain services has been limited and that he has set two- or three-night minimums on some rooms to minimize checkouts. “We basically allow the amount of business that our staff can handle.”

But it can be hard to balance that with guest expectations, said Jake Hatch, the director of sales and marketing at the Sanderling Resort in Duck, N.C., on the Outer Banks. The resort’s occupancy is at a record high, and it is charging higher than usual rates. At the same time, daily cleaning has been eliminated and its high-end restaurant, Kimball’s Kitchen, has been closed since the end of the summer season in 2019. It will finally open this weekend.

Mr. Hatch worries that guests will want more of a four-star resort. “That’s been a tough line for us to straddle,” he said.

Across the Outer Banks, he said, “it’ll be very noticeable around the island that everybody is short-staffed,” with longer waits and restaurants declining to take reservations.

“It’s still the same beautiful Outer Banks,” he said, but people should “just be patient as they can be with staff.”

Higher prices for ride shares may add to the misery. Susan Subracko, a mother of three who lives in Brooklyn, was trying to get to Kennedy International Airport in early May. She was forced to cancel two rides after the Lyft drivers did not arrive, and when she finally got a ride it cost $160 — about twice what she was originally quoted and $100 more than she usually pays. The company reimbursed her after she filed a complaint.

On her way home, there were no ride-share cars available and she instead waited two hours for a yellow cab. A Twitter user who goes by @sundeep recently shared a similar experience: His ride to J.F.K. cost him nearly $250 — about as much as the cost of his flight to San Francisco.

In April, Uber announced a $250 million driver stimulus to boost earnings for drivers and get them back on the road. Lyft is also providing incentives for drivers to meet the increased demand.

The national shortage of rental cars is another hurdle for travelers. Emily Armstrong, a community college instructor in Kansas City, Mo., said she and her husband booked a van for their family of six three weeks ahead of their 12-hour road trip to the Smoky Mountains on Saturday.

But when Ms. Armstrong called the rental company to ask for an earlier pickup, a customer service representative accidentally canceled their reservation and later told her there are no more similar vans available in her area. Instead, she said the family would either squeeze into their four-door sedan or have some of their children ride with relatives.

“I know this is a first-world problem, and we understand the shortage,” Ms. Armstrong said. “It was just kind of a surprise and caught us off guard.”

Adding to the tension for travelers are the conflicting feelings and differing regulations around mask usage and other Covid-19 rules. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently announced that vaccinated travelers do not need to wear masks, but this does not necessarily apply everywhere. Masks are still required in airports and planes, for instance.

Tim Hygh, the executive director of the Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau, said that though regulations in Michigan have been relaxed, masks are still required on the ferry that takes people to the island. He added that “each business on the island is still adapting their own rules based on what they want to do for their employees and what they want for their visitors.”

The Federal Aviation Administration recently said that there has been a “disturbing increase” in the number of unruly passengers who have returned to the skies with the easing of pandemic restrictions.

The F.A.A. said this month that it had received more than 1,300 unruly-passenger reports from airlines since February. In the previous decade, the agency said, it took enforcement actions against 1,300 passengers total.

Earlier this week, a woman on a Southwest Airlines flight was arrested after getting into a physical altercation with a flight attendant, who, according to one passenger on the flight, had reminded the woman to wear her mask. The flight attendant lost two of her teeth, according to a letter from a union representative to the head of Southwest.

Mr. Hygh, of the Mackinac tourism bureau, urges visitors to be flexible and do their research ahead of traveling.

“Any time you’re in a time of transition, there’s going to be confusion and sometimes confusion can lead to anger,” he said. “I’m hoping everyone gives everyone else a break.”

Jackie Snow contributed reporting.





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Memorial Day weekend: Millions of pent-up Americans ‘revenge travel’ in pandemic’s first maskless holiday


As New York, Chicago, D.C. and other cities have scheduled Memorial Day parades, which were nonexistent in 2020, people are also returning to beaches, national parks and stadiums. Rick Ueno, general manager of W South Beach hotel, told CNN that with the return of summer travelers, he is pushing his employees to get vaccinated so that they will not only be healthy but also benefit from the folks coming to South Florida with disposable income to spend.



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TSA prepares for Memorial Day weekend of busy summer travel season


LaJoye said waits at some TSA checkpoints are increasing along with passenger volumes. He said the TSA has hired more than 3,000 employees since January and expects to add another 1,000 by July 4. The agency expects to hire a total of 6,000 officers by Labor Day, he said. In February, the TSA had said it hoped to hire more than 6,000 screening officers “by summer.



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Traveling memorial wall honors 7,000 soldiers at Buffalo Naval Park


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Thousands of brave men and women are being honored at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval and Military Park this weekend. The Fallen Heroes Memorial Wall commends its legacy through a traveling masterpiece.

More than 7,000 dog tags make up the stars and stripes on the memorial flag occupying the Naval Yard. The founder of K.I.A Memorial Roadmarch, Jason Jaskula says it’s a tribute to those killed in the line of duty and the decades spent overseas.

K.I.A Memorial Roadmarch worked alongside the Buffalo and Erie County Naval and Military Park to bring the Fallen Heroes Memorial Wall to Buffalo for the weekend. There are several information stations at the site where you can learn more about their non-profit. Jaskula says the tribute won’t be here much longer.

“We don’t know if it’s ever coming back here. We would like it to, but this is the first time in New York State. Hopefully, people come out and see it and pay homage,” said Jaskula.

60 of the colored dog tags honor fallen Western New Yorkers.

“There’s always a connection,” said Jaskula. “They say Buffalo is a small town, but come down, see the names that are just from Buffalo. They basically defended our freedom and paid the ultimate price.”

Ivan Schwartz drove the memorial wall from Virginia to Buffalo. He says visitors might leave surprised with how they react.

“Ultimately, what happens is they’ll see a name… they’ll recognize a name. It’s someone they knew, who knows somebody, who knows somebody else. And that’s when the emotion really takes hold.”

To learn more about the Fallen Heroes Memorial Wall, click here. 

Abby Fridmann is an anchor and reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2020. See more of her work here.



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Orlando’s Pulse Nightclub To Become National Memorial With Biden Signature


This Saturday marks the fifth anniversary of the Pulse nightclub mass shooting in Orlando, Florida. Earlier this week, the U.S. Senate passed a bill to nationally recognize a memorial for those victims. The bill, S.1605, will designate the site of the former nightclub the Pulse National Memorial.

“This memorial will serve as a national symbol of hope, love, and unity,” Representative Linda Sanchez, one of the bill’s authors, wrote on Twitter. The bill’s other authors are Representatives Darren Soto and Val Demmings.

A Horrific Shooting

Pulse, a nightclub founded in 2004, was a home to Orlando’s LGBTQ+ community.

On June 12, 2016, a single gunman killed 49 people and wounded 53 others in a mass shooting at Pulse. The attack — the second deadliest single gunman mass shooting in the U.S. — is the deadliest incident of violence against LGBTQ+ people in the U.S. It also is the second deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil since the September 11 attacks of 2001.

Remembering The Victims

The House version of the bill passed in May. U.S. Senator Rick Scott, who was Florida’s governor at the time of the shooting, sponsored the Senate legislation. The bill was passed on a voice vote.

The shooting was “an unspeakable tragedy,” Scott said from the floor, a United Press International story reports.

Scott also called the shooting “an evil act of terrorism designed to divide us as a nation and strike fear into our hearts and minds.” He went on to say, “But instead, we came together and supported each other through heartbreak and darkness, to preserve and rebuild.”

Site Of The Memorial

The bill now needs President Joe Biden to sign it into law. While it is unclear at this point when Biden may sign the bill, it is likely he will do so. 

Biden, who was Vice President at the time of the shooting, traveled to Orlando to visit the site and victims’ families as well as first responders immediately after the attack. While there, Biden called the attack “an act of pure hate and unspeakable terror,” a Newsweek article reports.

Although the National Pulse Memorial would be designated as a national site, it would not be part of the National Park System, according to the legislation. What’s more, federal funds would not be used in any way with the memorial.

Instead, Orange County Florida Commissioners have already approved $10 million in funding to help the non-profit onePULSE Foundation purchase land around the former nightclub to construct a memorial and museum, the United Press International story reports.

A Solemn Remembrance

June 12 is the fifth anniversary of the mass shooting. If you’re looking for a way to mark the event, here are two suggestions from Orlando Weekly.

First, you can “solemnly ring a bell or similar instrument 49 times beginning at noon, both in recognition of the 49 lives lost at Pulse and in commitment to advancing full inclusion for the LGBTQ+ community. You can also follow on social media using the hashtag #49Bells.”

Secondly, the OnePulse Foundation holds an annual remembrance ceremony at the site of the Pulse nightclub, “bringing together the families of those whose lives were tragically taken, providing them a space to remember their loved ones in peace, and honoring all who survived, including the brave first responders and the trauma teams who saved so many,” Orlando Weekly explains. The ceremony at the Pulse Interim Memorial is by invitation only, but you can watch a livestream of the event at 6 p.m. Saturday here.

For more on Orlando, see all our Orlando content here, and get inspired with our expertly curated LGBTQ travel content here.





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Memorial Day weekend traffic at John Wayne Airport shows renewed confidence in air travel


If Memorial Day is the gateway to summer, then things are looking promising for John Wayne Airport, where recently released figures on holiday weekend travel recorded the highest number of passengers since before the coronavirus pandemic began.

Airport officials reported Friday the daily number of trips logged between May 27 and 31 reached levels not seen since January/February 2020, amounting to a nearly 500% increase over last year’s Memorial Day weekend traffic.

As coronavirus cases continue to reach record lows, and as more Orange County residents become vaccinated, confidence in flying the friendly skies appears to be taking off, the data suggests.

A total of 106,379 passengers came through the Santa Ana facility between Thursday and Memorial Day, compared to just 18,283 the previous year. Peak traffic was recorded on Friday, when 25,099 flyers took seats on 218 inbound and outbound flights.

While that represents an increase of nearly 482% above 2020, it’s still shy of the 142,440 travelers seen in May 2019. But it reflects an upward trend officials say has been gaining momentum since March and spells good news that the airport may see a return to near-normal passenger traffic during the typically busy summer season.

Los Angeles International Airport also reported a record number of passengers on the Friday before the holiday, logging some 78,000 travelers, the Los Angeles Times reported. May was a particularly busy month at LAX, where a daily average of 61,400 passengers filtered through Transportation Security Administration checkpoints.

A crowd of Memorial Day weekend travelers check in for flights at LAX at Delta Airlines, Terminal 2 Friday, May 28, 2021.

A crowd of Memorial Day weekend travelers check in for flights at LAX at Delta Airlines, Terminal 2 Friday, May 28, 2021. As coronavirus restrictions loosen, passenger traffic is beginning to reach pre-pandemic levels, airport staff report.

(Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times)

“We are seeing passenger numbers rise quickly as the demand for air travel surges across the U.S.,” Justin Erbacci, chief executive officer of Los Angeles World Airports, said in a statement, “so we want to make sure our guests know they will be returning to an airport that is bustling with travelers and at times experiencing heavy traffic.”

Orange County residents who’ve taken a long pandemic hiatus from air travel — induced by news reports of in-flight altercations over mask wearing and concerns about sitting shoulder to shoulder with strangers at the height of a global pandemic — may notice a few new developments upon their arrival to John Wayne Airport, representatives report.

In addition to the return of the facility’s JWAlive music performances and the AirPAWS therapy dogs, who aim to calm anxious passengers waiting for their departing flights to take off, a new AirPASS program has been recently introduced.

Now, visitors without a boarding pass may register for a one-day security clearance pass that allows access to secure areas of the Terminal, where pass holders can eat, shop, people watch and greet friends and family members at the gate.

To learn more about air travel and programs at John Wayne Airport, visit ocair.com or call (949) 252-5200.

Support our coverage by becoming a digital subscriber.





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National travel blogger promotes Bedford’s National D-Day Memorial


BEDFORD COUNTY, Va. – As we approach another anniversary of D-Day, the Traveling Mom blog is encouraging parents to take their kids to the National D-Day Memorial.

The popular website posted an article explaining why parents should visit the war memorial this summer. The blog’s founder said the best way to get kids to connect to historic sites is by asking them to research the human aspect of the event.

“There are really good stories,” said Traveling Mom Founder Kim Orlando. “There’s the Bedford Boys, Higgins boats and the 320th Balloon Battalion. Look at those three things alone, and I’ll bet you haven’t heard of all three of those. The stories are really compelling. You’re going to want to know more.”

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On Friday, 10 News will have a D-Day special to celebrate the memorial’s dedication. It’ll air after our 7 p.m. newscast.

Copyright 2021 by WSLS 10 – All rights reserved.



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