Odd News -- December 2, 2008

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Some Missouri lawmakers want to sink the floating parties. State Senator Delbert Scott is proposing a ban on beer bongs, Jell-O shots, kegs and beaded Mardi Gras necklaces on Missouri rivers. Delbert says he's not against someone having a beer while canoeing. But he says his bill is aimed at curbing the high-octane, get-me-drunk-fast type of drinking. As for the beads, authorities note they're often used as trinkets to encourage women to flash their breasts.

HONOLULU (AP) - Plains, Georgia, and Crawford, Texas, have something in common. They both became tourist attractions when made famous by presidents. Jimmy Carter's hometown was Plains and President George W. Bush has a ranch near Crawford. Now, "Uncle Jack" is offering walking tours of the Honolulu, Hawaii, neighborhood where President-elect Barack Obama grew up. The 70-something Jack Christenson asks for donations for his tour. The walk includes the apartment building where Obama once lived, the school he went to, even the Baskin-Robbins ice cream store where Obama worked.

GREAT NECK, N.Y. (AP) - Jonathan Lifschutz is having trouble keeping his license plates. The Long Island Democratic supporter has the New York vanity tags OBAMA. He says he has to keep them inside his car because people are trying to steal them. Lifschutz says he got his OBAMA tags days after the Jan. 26 South Carolina primary. He jokes the Empire State plates one day will be a collector's item - in someone else's house.

NAPA, Calif. (AP) - Here's something to drink to -- the end of Prohibition. The nationwide ban on booze officially ended 75 years ago this coming Friday. Lots of people in California's wine country will be toasting the repeal anniversary. Thomas C. Pinney, author of "A History of Wine in America," says it took decades for the domestic wine industry to get back on its feet. Jackson Cannon is the bar-manager of Boston-based Eastern Standard Kitchen & Drinks. He's arranging an end of Prohibition party. He says it will start Thursday and carry through to Friday.

ITHACA, N.Y. (AP) - Are your ready for some "Slammin' Yamz" ice cream? Cornell University students came up with the flavor fit for the holidays. Slammin' Yamz is made with vanilla ice cream, yam puree, molasses, cinnamon and nutmeg - with a marshmallow swirl. It wins the annual ice cream contest for the school's food science students. Slammin' Yamz will also be sold at the Cornell Dairy Bar during the spring semester.

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - A Pennsylvania casino owner rolls snake eyes in a marketing goof. Penn National Gaming sent fliers to 55,000 people, promising $500 worth of free slot machine credits and buffet meals. WGAL-TV reports the promotion was supposed to have gone to less than 1,000 of the casino's best customers. Casino officials aren't sure how the mistake happened, but say it occurred at a direct mail contractor. If all those chits were cashed-in, it could have cost the casino $29 million. Casino officials say they'll honor $100 in credits and two buffet passes until Christmas.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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