Longtime Grateful Dead Roadie, Chris Charucki, Passes Away

first_imgChris Charucki, a prominent production manager within the Grateful Dead family, has passed away. As explained by jambands.com in a 2003 interview, Charucki first became connected to the Grateful Dead when he began working with them in 1993 through Ultra Sound. In the time since, he continued working with the band’s various offshoots, including touring with Furthur, RatDog, Bob Weir, and Dead & Company.Rest in peace, Chris. You will be deeply missed.last_img

New York Considers Allowing Some Fans At Bills Playoff Game

first_imgFile image by Idibri / CC BY 2.0 ALBANY (AP) — The New York health commissioner is considering whether to allow 6,700 fans to attend a rare Buffalo Bills home playoff game if all attendees are tested beforehand.But nothing has been finalized yet, according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and a spokesperson for the Bills. The playoffs begin the weekend of Jan. 9, but the date of the game isn’t set.“The devil is often in the details,” Cuomo said. “We would like to do it.”Cuomo believes New York would be the nation’s first state to try such a plan, which would include contact tracing after the game. “This could be the beginning to show how you could have events with testing,” he said. His budget director, Bob Mujica, said the football team would control entry and exit into a socially distanced stadium where fans without masks would be ejected.But Health Commissioner Howard Zucker said he’s worried about encouraging “ancillary events” — potential postgame and pregame events that could cause spikes of their own.“How do we control that?” Zucker said. “That is really the question.”And the idea is getting pushback in a region that’s been hit hard by an uptick in COVID-19 in recent months.Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz said that his administration hasn’t been part of any discussions about the idea and that it hasn’t come up on recent calls with state officials. And he said the county doesn’t have the capacity to do rapid testing on 6,700 individuals, typically performing 1,450 tests a week.A decision would need to be made by the middle of next week to prepare for a game just over two weeks from now, he said.The Bills have clinched their first AFC East title since 1995. They will host a playoff game for the first time since a 30-27 wild-card playoff loss to Jacksonville on Dec. 28, 1996, in what proved to be Bills Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly’s final game.The team’s fans would undoubtedly be excited at the chance, with hundreds coming out to the Buffalo-Niagara International Airport late Saturday night to greet the players and celebrate their victory.“That was incredible,” said Bills coach Sean McDermott. “Always nice when you get home in the middle of the night and it’s as cold as it was and the fans are out there to welcome us home, just special.”Asked Monday about fans being at the stadium for the game, McDermott said he appreciated state officials being open to considering it.“I know we would love to have the opportunity to have fans,” he said. Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Getting There Is Half The Fun: Must Do Hikes In Our National Parks

first_imgWe live in one of the most photogenic regions of North America, probably the world. Photographers travel here to shoot from all over. They are born here, raised here, and fall in love with taking pictures here. They spend hours climbing thousands of feet in elevation to capture sunsets. They camp overnight to shoot sunrises. They traverse miles to photograph waterfalls in the summer and freeze their butts off to catch them frozen in winter.Photographers spend more time hiking trails than your average person, so they’re bound to have their favorites.Since this week is National Parks Week, I reached out to several photographers in our region for their must-do hikes at our local National Parks. From waterfalls to views, rock cliffs to airplane crashes, these hikes have something for everyone. Justin Potter – @jpotterphotoAs much as I love the Linville Gorge, I think I would pick the Appalachian Trail section from Carvers Gap to Grassy Ridge. For me, it has everything I love in a hike. You have good elevation gains, a walk in the woods, a tunnel of Rhododendrons, and then the bald tops that give you unobstructed views of the N.C. and Tenn. mountains. With the top of Grassy Ridge at an elevation 6165′, You’ll find yourself getting lost in the mountains for as far as you can see. For me, I did this hike for the first time trying to catch a sunrise on a snow-filled January Morning. It was a tough, ice-filled adventure but made it all that much more worth it once I reached the top of Grassy. I can’t wait to go back this June and see the Rhododendrons bloom. Tyler Denney – @tfranklindMt. LeConte – via the Alum Cave Trail in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This trail may or may not be amongst some of the more popular trails (I’m really not sure), but it is truly one of my personal favorites in our region.It is equipped with many features, like its unique landscape, historic landmarks, trail paths that will put you right on the edge of the mountainside, and massive panoramic views of neighboring peaks. Not to mention, the village at the top which offers several amenities for overnighters, as well as a snack for those just spending the day there.At 6593 feet, this 11.0 mile, out and back mountain trail near Gatlinburg, TN. is one to always be remembered and cherished by me! Connor Paton – @connorjpatonOne of the must-do hikes in one of our region’s National Parks is the Alum Cave Trail up to Mt LeConte. It is a 5.5-mile route from bottom to top, gaining roughly 2,700 feet in elevation. On route to the top, you will encounter the Alum Cave Bluffs, which are absolutely stunning year round. If you’re lucky, you will also see some Peregrine Falcons soaring around the bluffs. These birds are the fastest in the world and are an extraordinary sight for some lucky hikers. From the bluffs, you will continue upwards for 2.7 miles until you reach the LeConte Lodge and some of the best panoramic views the Smokies have to offer. Logan Shropshier – @loganshropOne of my favorite hikes to go on is the Appalachian trail on Roan Mountain. There is always something magical about hiking on the Appalachian Trail. This section of the AT contains the longest stretch of balds in the Appalachian Mountains. I enjoy this trail because you get a little bit of everything; a moss covered forest, vast grassy balds for miles and a 360-degree view of major peaks in the area at an elevation of 6,180ft.Another must do hike for me is the plane crash at Browning Knob just off the Blue Ridge Parkway. The hike is a short one but a nice gain in elevation. At the top of Browning Knob, the plane is down a trail on the backside. The wreckage is like a scene from Into the Wild. Most of the plane is still intact. It’s definitely a hiking destination unlike any other in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Joshua Moore – @jtm71A must-do hike in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park would be the Appalachian Trail from Newfound Gap to Charlies Bunion. This hike will give you a real taste of the Smoky’s along with allowing you to catch one of the best views along the Appalachian Trail in the Great Smoky Mountains. Charlie’s Bunion is one of the must-sees to thru-hikers making their way to Maine. From Newfound Gap to Charlies Bunion it is 8.2 miles round trip. Bring plenty of water. Sean Fisher – @mr.bootstrapsOne of my best recommendations would be Rough Ridge of the Blue Ridge Pkwy. The rock outcroppings up the short mile-long trail provide for some amazing sunrises and sunsets. The trail is just off the actual parkway and is one of the best showcases of the higher altitude alpine environments. Kenton Steryous – @kenton_steryousBlue Ridge Parkway, Va. – Humpback Rocks: Don’t let the short mileage fool you, it’s an incredibly steep hike, and you’ll be out of breath regardless of its short distance (one mile to the top). But the reward is worth it. Without a doubt, some of the best Blue Ridge views around, and even affords views of Shenandoah National Park to the North. If you stay for sunset, you’ll have just enough time to make it down before total darkness, but bring a headlamp just in case. Melanie Miller – @rosieladyblueRoan Mountain: Hike the AT (managed by the National Park Service) from Carvers Gap to Highway 19E, but before you start, wander south on the AT for a mile or so. Most people just head on up to the balds, but personally, my favorite section is that mile of trail south from Carvers Gap. When you walk into the forest, you’ll find moss-covered pines lining one of the most beautifully groomed sections of the AT. On a foggy day (which are frequent up here), I feel like I’ve entered the Pacific Northwest. Few people hike this section which makes it that much more magical. After I get my fill, I head on up to the balds. In my opinion, the balds shine the most when covered with a layer of rime ice or turned pink with blooming Rhododendron. The AT continues from here to the Overmountain Shelter which is a restored barn-turned shelter with outstanding mountain views. Stop here for lunch or spend the night before finishing back at 19E. Samantha Brooke – @samanthabrookephotoMount Pleasant is my “must-do” hike on the Blue Ridge Parkway; for a short ~5.5 mile (and from my experience, not crowded) hike, you are greeted with amazing views of the Blue Ridge (there’s an East and West summit). I’m almost always able to take a long lunch break and read at the top uninterrupted by others. There are also several campsites nearby if you want to do this at sunset and stay the night; Cole Mountain is another popular hike nearby with plenty of spots to camp near the parking lot. The fur babies enjoy it too! Roger Upton – @carolinatrekkerThe Black Mountain Crest Trail (also known as the Deep Gap Trail) is my choice for a Must-Do hike on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The trailhead is located inside Mt. Mitchell State Park which is accessed just off the BRP. This 12-mile hike is widely revered as the most challenging trek on the East Coast, and one of the premier hikes in the nation. It traverses the largest cluster of 6,000’ peaks east of the Mississippi. The vistas are breathtaking and the dense alpine spruce-fir forests provide Tolkienesque scenery throughout the jaunt. Hung Ta – @hungqtaI would highly recommend the Rough Ridge Trail on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It is a moderate hike with an incredible view as a reward. Matthew Seltzer – @zeppelinvanmanCrabtree Falls is one of my favorite hikes of the Blue Ridge Parkway. It’s a nice solo hike or family hike because the trail isn’t too rough and it provides beautiful scenery at every turn. The way the water flows over a unique collection of rocks makes this one of the best waterfalls North Carolina has to offer. Brandon Dewey – @blueridgeimageryThe Three Falls Hike in Shenandoah National Park will take you past three beautiful waterfalls all found within the Central District of the park: Lewis Spring Falls, Dark Hollow Falls, and Rose River Falls. The trail has some great views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. This 8.3-mile loop is an awesome hike during the spring when the waterfalls are rushing. Josh Patton – @pattonjoshIt may not be the most popular and largest park in the region but it has a close place to my heart. The 21mi Ridge Trail is the main trail that is so attractive. Taking it from one end to the other of the park you climb up to the KY/TN/VA border and are met with beautiful views the whole hike. Doing the whole trail end to end you have the option to stop by White Rocks Overlook, Sand Cave, Hensley Settlement, The Pinnacle Overlook and so much more. The hike will be between 21-25 miles depending on how many side trails and places you visit. Traffic in the park is very low and allows you to get the peaceful nights of camping that are sometimes hard to find along trails like the AT.P.S. At the far end of the park where White Rocks Overlook and the Ewing Trail are found is the place I proposed to my now wife, Lois Jean.Huge thanks to everyone who participated in this article, sharing with our readers, from your hearts, and through your lens. Happy National Parks Week everyone!Justin Forrest is an outdoor writer, fly fishing addict, and co-founder of Narrative North—based in Asheville, N.C. He posts pictures of cats and fishing on Instagram sometimes.last_img read more

4 ways to make yourself more reliable

first_img 36SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,John Pettit John Pettit is the Managing Editor for CUInsight.com. John manages the content on the site, including current news, editorial, press releases, jobs and events. He keeps the credit union … Web: www.cuinsight.com Details It’s nice to be trusted. When you’re a reliable person, you become the person people depend on. Whether friends or coworkers, you want to be able to count on the people in your life. Here are four ways you can be seen as more reliable.Keep your word: When you make a promise, you should come through. Being reliable doesn’t mean you have to say ‘yes’ all the time. There comes a point when you can overcommit, so it’s fine to say ‘no’ when you don’t feel like you’re up for it. Just make sure, if you say you’re going to do something, you get the job done.Hold yourself accountable: Nobody’s perfect. Every once in a while, we all mess up. The key to screwing up is to admit that it happened. Accountability makes you appear trustworthy, and as long as it’s not happening all the time, and you’re not blaming others, you won’t destroy your reputation for being reliable.Change your bad habits: Are you casually late all the time? Do you leave the house around the time you’re supposed to be at your destination? Do you pass gossip around the office? Think about not only your reputation at work, but your reputation with your close friends. Do you have any bad habits that might be holding you back from being seen as a reliable friend or coworker?Communicate: Sometimes things fall through because we’re not communicating well. Did you get a flat tire on your way to meet a friend for lunch? Before you call roadside assistance, send your buddy a text and let them know you’re not going to make it. There’s a big difference between having to change your destination and having to eat lunch alone.last_img read more

OECD calls for standardisation to create tradable longevity market

first_imgIt further urged pension investors to update their mortality assumptions regularly and ensure these recognised future mortality improvements, suggesting that failure to do so risked underestimating liabilities by 10%.“Likewise,” the report continued, “the use of assumptions that are not reflective of recent improvements in mortality can expose the pension plan or annuity provider to the need for a significant increase in reserves.”One of the suggestions to better address longevity risk was for the regulatory framework to be risk-based, so that a pension plan’s actions to mitigate any risk would be incentivised.However, the report raised concerns about the “potentially limited” capacity of insurers and reinsurers to take on risk, instead proposing that capital markets offer solutions that allow longevity risk to be traded.It said such tradable solutions could offer a “promising alternative” for pension schemes unwilling to increase risk buffers to retain their longevity risk.But it said it would be vital that the market offer standarised products and be transparent, with the development of longevity indices key to such a step. The OECD has called for greater standardisation and transparency in the pricing of longevity risk to allow for growth in the de-risking market.The think tank also reiterated earlier calls for the issuance of longevity bonds and governments to back the creation of functional longevity markets as it published its 2014 Pensions Outlook.Alongside the report, the body also published a detailed assessment of mortality assumptions and longevity risk, suggesting regulators should take a more proactive role in encouraging pension funds to manage their longevity.“More transparency and standardisation in the pricing of longevity instruments would aid potential investors in becoming comfortable with investing in longevity risk and allow for the further development of index-based instruments,” the report said.last_img read more

Pensions minister asks schemes for copies of ESG statements

first_imgThe UK pensions minister has written to pension schemes to request they submit the sections of their statement of investment principles (SIPs) that set out how they take account of financially material considerations arising from environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) factors, including climate change.He also wants to see the sections that set out the pension schemes’ policy on stewardship and taking member views into account.The aim, according to a press release from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), is to compile a record so Guy Opperman, the minister, could monitor compliance with new regulations that “compel funds to pay greater attention to environmental, social and governance considerations”, as well as highlight best practice.The minister also wants to know if the schemes report in line with the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures. Source: PLSAGuy Opperman addresses the PLSA conference in October 2018In the press release, Opperman is quoted as saying: “Pension funds are a powerful weapon in the fight against climate change. Despite some good work by a number of schemes, some are not acting. We need urgency on this vital issue from trustees and investment managers.“New regulations came into force last week,” he added. “I’m demanding that the remaining pension schemes and the fund managers they appoint stop shuffling their feet.“They must meet their responsibilities to savers now and in the future, and to protect the future of the planet.”Under 2018 regulatory changes, trustees of UK defined benefit and defined contribution schemes had until 1 October to update or prepare their SIP to make sure it included their policy on:How financially material factors (including but not limited to ESG considerations such as climate change) are taken into account in the context of investment activity;The extent, if at all, that non-financial matters such as members’ views are taken into account; andEngagement and voting activities in respect of investments, which includes engagement with asset managers employed by the trusteesAccording to the DWP press release, Opperman has told schemes that circumstances in which climate and ESG risks are not financially material are likely to be “extremely limited”.Therefore, according to the minister: “It is part and parcel of trustees’ fiduciary duty to take account of these risks when setting out investment strategy and to explain that clearly to investors.”A spokesman said the idea behind the minister’s asking for the relevant sections of their SIP is to give the pension funds the chance to “show themselves in the best possible light”.News of Opperman’s letter comes after the UK’s main pension fund trade body last week referred to the new regulations as being merely the first step on a “journey” for trustees. Caroline Escott, policy lead for investment and stewardship at the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA), today said the announcement from the pensions minister “emphasises that this shouldn’t just be a tick box exercise for trustees, it’s not just a compliance exercise”.“Schemes of all shapes and sizes need to think about how they meaningfully implement ESG across their portfolio and also how they tell the story, communicate what they’re doing to scheme members,” she told IPE.Lorna Blyth, head of investment solutions at mutual insurer Royal London, said ESG issue were increasingly in the spotlight, and that Opperman’s move “sets a clear direction of travel from government and policy makers”.  Most UK pension trustees were prepared for the new rules regarding responsible investment, according to a survey by Hymans Robertson that was publicised a few weeks before the 1 October deadline. A survey from law firm Sackers indicated there was still lots of confusion about the extent to which trustees should take account of member views. This article was updated to add a comment from Caroline Escott at the PLSA. The request was set out in a letter to 50 of the UK’s largest pension schemes in which, according to the press release, Opperman spelled out what pension schemes must do under the new regulations. A copy of the letter was not made available.According to the press release, the minister also “probed” the schemes about “what substantive measures they have made – and when – to their investment strategies to take account of environmental, social and governance [sic] and climate change, and what substantive changes they have made to their stewardship policies to ensure that trustees act as engaged investors”.last_img read more

Ann Vincent joins the BCEF Board of Directors

first_imgBatesville, IN— The Batesville Community Education Foundation is pleased to announce that Batesville High School alumna Ann Vincent has been elected to the BCEF Board of Directors. “BCEF is excited to add her to our organization’s board,” said Anne Wilson, BCEF executive director. “We want to thank Lance Green for his service these past few years and welcome Ann. Her expertise as an accountant and her connection to Batesville’s school system as both an alumna and a parent make for a perfect combination.”Vincent, a 1991 BHS graduate, is a certified public accountant with Somerset CPAs in Indianapolis. She resides in Batesville with her husband Tom and their daughter Sophia, a BHS freshman. “As a parent, I have always thought there was a need to go beyond traditional education and provide enrichment activities that allow for students to see all the opportunities available to them after high school,” Vincent shared.  “I am looking forward to serving and contributing to the success of our students and our community.”Vincent joins 16 other volunteers who currently serve on the BCEF board: President Eric Fledderman, Vice President Kim Kick, Treasurer Brad Marcy, Secretary Jama Linkel-Cleghorn, Leacarol Bennett, Eric Benz, Alex Dudley, Jenni Garrett, Sammie Hardebeck, Alex Henkle, Mindy Koehne, Ryan Holcomb, BCSC Superintendent Paul Ketcham, Cathy Martini, Matt Moore, and Ashley Walls.last_img read more

Northern Ireland ‘needs’ to reach Euro 2016, says boss Michael O’Neill

first_img Norman Whiteside, Pat Jennings and Sammy McIlroy were some of the last Northern Irishmen to feature in a finals competition at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico, but O’Neill’s current crop could end that long hiatus as early as Monday. Victories over the Faroe Islands and Hungary, coupled with the latter dropping points against Group F leaders Romania on Friday, would assure Northern Ireland of a place in France next summer. Northern Ireland are on the cusp of qualifying for a major tournament for the first time in 30 years, and boss Michael O’Neill believes the country “needs” to be in France for Euro 2016 next summer. And O’Neill has issued a rallying cry to his squad ahead of the crunch double header in their qualifying campaign, urging them to deliver an historic moment for their nation. “If we were to manage to maintain our form and secure qualification, I think it would be the first time in history that a pot-five team has qualified,” O’Neill said. “That gives you an indication of where this team has come to. “The motivation is there because Northern Ireland needs it. Simple as that. Nothing else. “We need it as a country and as a group of players, as a group of supporters. We’re not hiding behind that, and we want to deliver it. We need this and I think the players recognise they have the capability to deliver it.” O’Neill can speak from personal experience, too, having played during the 30-year wilderness before taking the helm in 2011. He and a raft of other Northern Irishmen never came close to experiencing a summer tournament against Europe or the world’s elite, and O’Neill thinks his current squad recognise they can make an indelible mark on their own careers. “Obviously the prize is huge and you do think both about the significance of qualification and, if it didn’t go our way, the significance of that also,” he said. “But within this group of players there’s a hard core of players who recognise that there’s a real opportunity for them to have their international careers significantly remembered. “There are lot of players who have played down the years for Northern Ireland and not had the chance to go to a major finals, a lot of really good players. “This is a group of players who have given themselves this opportunity with what they’ve done to date, so I don’t worry that mentally they’ll not be able to handle the situation or the games that lie ahead. They recognise the prize that lies ahead for them and I’ve every confidence. “The likes of Steven (Davis), Aaron Hughes, Chris Baird, just to name three players alone, have served Northern Ireland now for the best part of 10, 15 years. It would be their reward to get to the finals. It’s that type of player and other senior players around them that have put themselves in this position.” Press Associationlast_img read more