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  |   Feb. 5, 2013 at 6:00 AM
Students take up tubas for V-day

MEMPHIS, Feb. 4 (UPI) -- A group of about a dozen tuba players at the University of Memphis said they are taking Valentine's Day requests for romantic serenades.

Zack Corpus, a member of the tuba troupe, said the Scheidt School of Music students will play two-song serenades while delivering chocolates and cards to the sweethearts of those who pay the determined fee, The (Memphis) Commercial Appeal reported Monday.

"It's so much more unique to have tuba valentines because there's a kind of novelty to it. Plus, it's a lot more embarrassing," Corpus said.

Corpus said the songs in the group's repertoire include "My Girl" by The Temptations, "A Whole New World" from Disney's "Aladdin," "I Can't Help Myself" by The Temptations, "Everything I Do" by Brian Adams and "You Belong With Me" by Taylor Swift.

Corpus said the fees start at $25 for an on-campus performance and increase for off-campus appearances.

The group said they are hoping to raise at least $1,000 for the school of music.


Arizona signs warn of burros crossing

BULLHEAD CITY, Ariz., Feb. 4 (UPI) -- Bullhead City, Ariz., set up two signs warning of burro crossings after several road accidents involving the animals, an official said.

Steve Johnson, community spokesman, said the signs were set up on either side of the Bullhead Parkway after a car killed a burro last week, the Mohave Daily News, Bullhead City, reported Monday.

"We will be meeting with Bureau of Land Management officials on Feb. 8 to further address the issue of these migrating burros," Johnson said.

Police said burro crossings have become an increasing problem in the area.

"Approximately 20 calls regarding sightings of burros on or near the roadway have been placed by concerned citizens to the 911 center since December," said Emily Fromelt, spokeswoman for Bullhead City Police Department.


City uses Christmas trees to recover dunes

LONG BEACH, N.Y., Feb. 4 (UPI) -- Officials in a New York city are using retired Christmas trees to restore the dunes ruined by Hurricane Sandy in October.

Jim LaCarrubba, Long Beach's director of public works, said the city has placed thousands of Christmas trees along the beach to catch sand blown by the wind, allowing the dunes to gradually reform, The New York Times reported Monday.

LaCarrubba said the dunes protected the city from storms.

"Some areas lost three to five feet in elevation on the beach," LaCarrubba said. "We've become that much more vulnerable to storms."

Some of the trees were donated by Home Depot while others formerly stood in the living rooms of residents.

The trees were arranged on the shore by about 100 volunteers last week.

"It was a very nice healing thing for residents to do to contribute to our protection," City Manager Jack Schnirman said.


Cat spends two months in garage

ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH, Fla., Feb. 4 (UPI) -- A Florida couple said their 3-year-old cat is recovering after having apparently spent two months locked inside a neighbor's garage.

Jerry and Elizabeth Moore said their cat, Tommy, vanished Nov. 25 from their St. Augustine Beach home and he was discovered Jan. 20 hiding out a neighbor's garage, the St. Augustine Record reported Monday.

The couple said the cat had shrunk from 10.13 pounds to 4.5 pounds when he was found.

"He couldn't stand. He was completely out of it," Jerry Moore said.

The couple said Tommy was treated at an emergency veterinary clinic and the vets determined he was "seriously depressed."He later received a blood transfusion.

Dr. John Yselonia of Antigua Veterinary Practice said Tommy is now eating and gaining weight, which is a good sign.

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