World bikini parade record stands
MADISON LAKE, Minn., July 28 (UPI) -- An attempt to break the world record for most women parading in bikinis failed Saturday at Paddlefish Days in Madison Lake, Minn., an organizer said.
The dozens of women -- and a couple of men -- who showed up in two-piece swim suits fell far short of the 451 needed to earn a place in the Guinness Book of World Records mark, the Mankato Free Press reported.
The newspaper counted only about 39 bikini tops, while KEYC-TV reported more than 75.
A majority of the Madison Lake City Council had expressed opposition to the bikini event as part of the family-centered festival in the town of under 1,000 people and doubts about the charity involved -- a group focusing on the importance of Vitamin D in cancer prevention, the Free Press said. But First Amendment rights won out in the end.
Organizer Cynthia Frederick said there will be a bikini parade next year, but not in Madison Lake.
"We've been invited to Eagle Lake to march next year in their Tater Days parade," Frederick said.
Customs official caught playing game
HOPA, Turkey, July 29 (UPI) -- A Turkish customs agent was busted playing video games on the job when Customs and Trade Minister Hayati Yazici came for a surprise inspection, officials said.
During his recent visit to Hopa, in Turkey's border province of Artvin, Yazici decided to make a surprise visit to the Sarp Border Gate on the Georgia border, Today's Zaman reported Sunday.
Yazici had his security team leave him and had the license plates on his car changed for the surprise inspection.
When he arrived for the inspection, Yazici entered a room at random and caught an officer playing a video game, the report said.
Yazici proceeded to scold the officer for playing video games while at work.
Calif. hit with $11.7M in late fees
SACRAMENTO, July 28 (UPI) -- Anyone who has been late with a credit card payment can sympathize with the $11.7 million in late fees California racked up in fiscal 2011.
That single year accounted for more than one-third of the fees the state was hit with between 2004 and 2011, The Bay Citizen reported. The figures come from the state's Department of General Services.
Eric Lamoureux, a spokesman for the department, said some departments were late with payments because then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, a Republican, and the Democrats in the Legislature missed the budget deadline by 100 days.
Late budgets aren't the only reason for late payments. The Corrections Department's inmate medical services made a lot of late payments a few years ago because of a federal receivership, which cost it many of its accountants.
Jessica Levinson, who teaches at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, said that especially when California is having so much trouble balancing its budget state officials should try harder to avoid penalties.
"When you are using the taxpayers' money, there is a responsibility to act with reasonable care," Levinson said. "It is really inappropriate to be tardy in paying bills when it's costing so much in late fees."
Gunman demands band camp quiet down
PEORIA, Ariz., July 28 (UPI) -- A man carrying a gun showed up at an Arizona band camp and told students there to be quiet, police said.
The man, whom police are still working to identify, approached the band of 52 Peoria High School students who were practicing in a field at Emmanuel Pines Camp last Thursday, The Arizona Republic reported.
The gunman yelled at the students to "stop making noise. Morning and afternoon is OK, but nighttime is not," deputies said.
Throughout the incident, the man was waving the gun and pointing it at students and staff, deputies said,
Deputies put the camp on lockdown as they searched for the suspect. They were unable to locate him, but believe he lives within earshot of the band camp practices.
|Additional Odd News Stories|
WASHINGTON, May 17 (UPI) --James Taylor will headline a concert at the White House next week, when the Library of Congress honors Carole King with the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.
BRIDGEPORT, Conn., May 17 (UPI) --More than 20 people were injured Friday when a commuter train in Connecticut derailed and struck a train moving in the opposite direction, officials said.