Area Life

No ‘Jersey Shore’ redux; beach town wary of new reality show

SEASIDE HEIGHTS, N.J. (AP) — Some residents of the New Jersey shore town stung by MTV’s “Jersey Shore” are wary about plans by a bar featured in that series to hold a casting call for a new reality show. The Bamboo Bar in Seaside Heights is looking for “loud and fun” single people ...

Nicole Kidman reveals past engagement to Lenny Kravitz

NEW YORK (AP) — Actress Nicole Kidman has revealed that she was once engaged to musician Lenny Kravitz. Kidman confirmed the engagement with the rocker in a recent interview with Net-A-Porter’s magazine “The Edit,” in which she was discussing her upcoming HBO series “Big Little ...

Museum removes artwork as protest

WELLESLEY, Mass. (AP) — A museum at a small liberal arts college in Massachusetts has removed or covered dozens of artwork produced by immigrant artists or donated by foreign-born collectors to illustrate their contribution to the cultural wealth of the United States. The Art-Less project ...

Best sellers

Hardcover Fiction 1. “Norse Mythology” by Neil Gaiman (W.W.Norton) 2. “Echoes in Death” by J.D. Robb (St. Martin’s) 3. “Never Never” by James Patterson and Candice Fox (Little, Brown) 4. “The Whistler” by John Grisham (Doubleday) 5. “Right Behind You” by Lisa ...

Green roofs help deter erosion, insulate buildings

I thought Lady Gaga nailed “God Bless America” when she opened the Super Bowl, but I thought she was directed to jump off the roof a beat or two early. There’s a green roof up there! The decision to focus on her sequined harness rather than the roof garden was a little short-sighted. ...

Jewish film festival begins

Choosing the right selection of movies to show at the 18th annual Altoona International Jewish Film Festival takes a lot of research, but this year’s lineup features two Academy Award winners and a selection of historical films, dramas and comedy. Greater Altoona Jewish Federation executive ...

Casting Oscar: Foundry creates each statuette as work of art

ROCK TAVERN, N.Y. — Every Oscar fist-pumped or tearfully cradled by Academy Award winners is first cast, buffed and fussed over at a foundry far from Hollywood. Workers at the Polich Tallix fine art foundry, about 50 miles north of New York City, began work in late September on the awards ...

Queen Latifah to be honored as entertainment icon

LOS ANGELES — Queen Latifah will get the royal treatment at the upcoming American Black Film Festival Honors. The Oscar-nominated actress is set to receive the Entertainment Icon award at this year’s ceremony, to be held in Los Angeles on Friday. The star of “Star” on Fox says she is ...

‘La La Land’ composer finds himself in spotlight

LOS ANGELES — For “La La Land” composer and songwriter Justin Hurwitz, it’s been a long, laborious ride from dreaming up the musical with his old college roommate Damien Chazelle over six years ago to becoming the toast of awards season. His catchy score and songs have broken through, ...

Uncovering musical roots: Documentaries on tap for Penn State Altoona

Growing up in Pittsburgh, Jerry Zolten was mesmerized with rural, early 20th century American music, called roots, for its influence on and evolution into all of today’s major genres, from country to rock and roll and rhythm and blues. Zolten wanted to be a rock and roll star, but he ended ...

Tasty Words: Sausage gravy, biscuits becomes a dad’s best breakfast

For as long as I can remember, my husband’s favorite breakfast dish has always been sausage gravy over warm flaky biscuits. While we were dating, Bryan frequently suggested a trip to Bob Evans so he could get this cherished hot dish. I, too, became a lover of the meal, quickly sneaking a ...

The AP predicts this Grammy showdown

NEW YORK — Though dozens are nominated at Sunday’s Grammy Awards, we all know the real showdown is between Beyonce and Adele. Both are nominated for the top three prizes — album, song and record of the year. Adele won all three honors with “21” and “Rolling In the Deep” in ...

Tales from a train: Travelers tell stories of their journey

Editor’s note: Associated Press Tampa, Florida, correspondent Tamara Lush spent 15 days traveling via train across the U.S. as part of Amtrak’s residency program, designed for creative professionals to spend time writing on the rails. She spoke with dozens of people — fellow travelers, ...

Oprah plans cruise in Alaska in Holland America partnership

The Associated Press Oprah Winfrey will take a cruise this summer in a place sheás never been before: Alaska. The trip launches a partnership between O, The Oprah Magazine, and Holland America Line, according to an announcement Thursday by the cruise company and Hearst magazines. The ...

Counting birds: Enumerators encountered soggy mess during annual event

The weather was miserable for the latest Juniata Valley Audubon Society bird count, compelling the feathered creatures to hide from the volunteer enumerators. But the results showed the continuing trend of finding more non-native than native birds in Blair County, according to Laura ...

Earth Matters: Examination brings clarity to regulation argument

Reform of regulations of any kind can be a sticky business, but is especially so for environmental guidelines. As some complain regulations are bad for business, it would seem we sometimes forget they are intended to save lives, prevent workplace injuries, avoid serious pollution and ...