first_imgOn the final day of week eleven of the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), Darragh Kenny (IRL) and Vertige De Galarzacs, owned by Morning Star Sporthorses, LLC, rose to the occasion, putting forth an impressive double-clear effort to capture the $50,000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Grand Prix on Sunday, March 21, in the International Arena at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC).The twelfth week of WEF, sponsored by Wellington Agricultural Services, begins on Wednesday, March 31, with CSI5* competition along with a concurrent CSI2* running through Sunday, April 4, the final day of the 2021 WEF. The week opens with the $1,000 Bainbridge Companies 1.40m CSI4* and the $10,000 Douglas Elliman Real Estate 1.45m CSI4* Qualifier on Wednesday. Thursday features the $50,000 Adequan® WEF Challenge Cup Round 12.A busy Friday is highlighted by the $37,000 1.45m CSI2* Qualifier and the $73,000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Classic Series Final. An exciting weekend of show jumping begins with the $214,000 Wellington Agricultural Services Grand Prix CSI4* on Saturday and concludes with the $50,000 1.45m Grand Prix CSI2* on Sunday. All feature classes can be watched for free both live and on-demand on the livestream.A total of 43 horse-and-rider combinations contested the opening round over a course set by Olaf Petersen Jr. (GER), with just six pairs qualifying for the jump-off. The first to return was Canada’s Nicole Walker aboard Excellent B, a 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding by Berlin x Heartbreaker, executing the shortened track with ease to set the pace for the remainder of the field. Walker and the NW Stables LP entry finished fault-free in a time of 37.81 seconds, which would hold up for second place.Next to challenge, David Oberkircher (USA) and Upper, owned by Southfields Farm, LLC, gave it their best effort but stopped the clock just off the mark as he and the 13-year-old Selle Français gelding by Diamant de Semilly x Nadir de San Patrignano crossed the finish line in 38.59 seconds for third place.The next three riders would lower the fences in height, leaving the door open for one final rider to best the field, which he did. Kenny, the current overall leader of the CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Classic Series, proved once again why he’s at the top, picking up the win aboard the 12-year-old Selle Français gelding by Quaprice Bois Margot x Si Tu Viens, crossing the timers in 36.01 seconds.“I didn’t jump him in any classes this week,” said Kenny of the winning gelding “Vince.” “I just went straight into the Grand Prix so he was a little bit more fresh. He jumped excellent and felt fantastic. He’s just a really, really nice horse.“He was jumping really well so I didn’t have to worry about that so much,” continued Kenny. “He felt really good, I just wasn’t sure if the inside turn after the third last jump was going to be faster or not. It turned out to be faster so that was good.”For Walker, the second-place finish marked a proud moment during a comeback of sorts after sustaining a knee injury over the summer that kept her out of the saddle. In August, the 27-year-old rider fractured her fibular head, tore her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), and suffered minor tears in her other ligaments. Her injury, coupled with COVID-19 restrictions in Canada, left her with a lot of work to do to get back to this level.“I came into this circuit having not jumped too much so it took a bit of time to get both myself and the horses fit again,” said Walker. “He [Excellent B] has really only jumped three classes down here and was champion in the High Amateur Owners one week. We just aimed for this class. He’s been my partner for about four years now, and he’s just the easiest, coolest dude around. He’s so simple, and it has been a while since I’ve jumped the big classes. I just had so much fun with him today.”Navigating the tough task of being first to go in the jump-off, Walker leaned on the expertise of her trainer, an Olympic veteran and regular winner at the 2021 WEF, to make a solid plan.“With the help of Cian O’Connor, he said I should aim for the six [strides] after the combination so we took a risk there,” said Walker. “He’s got a massive stride so that worked out well. Where I lost it was not doing the inside turn to the last line, so I could’ve been quicker there, but I’m very happy with my second-place result.”Oberkircher, who rides as an amateur while balancing a full-time job, was back at work for the past two weeks, only arriving in Wellington on Friday night for the weekend’s competition. The pair rounded out the podium with a third-place finish.“I’ve had my horse for about four years now, so I know him really well,” he said. “He’s very straightforward and easy. He’s such a good sport, tries so hard, and I’m so lucky to have him. I knew there were some fast riders after me, and he’s a bit of a slower mover, so I just wanted to have nice clear round and go as quickly as possible. We ended up with a great result in third so I’m really happy.”Final Results: $50,000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m National Grand Prix1. VERTIGE DE GALARZACS: 2009 Selle Français gelding by Quaprice Bois Margot x Si Tu ViensDARRAGH KENNY (IRL), Morning Star Sporthorses, LLC: 0/0/36.012. EXCELLENT B: 2009 Dutch Warmblood gelding by Berlin x HeartbreakerNICOLE WALKER (CAN), NW Stables LP: 0/0/37.813. UPPER: 2008 Selle Francais gelding by Diamant de Semilly x Nadir de San PatrignanoDAVID OBERKIRCHER (USA), Southfields Farm LLC: 0/0/38.594. MADORADO DW: 2012 Belgian Warmblood mare by Breemeersen AdoradoELLEN WHITAKER (GBR), Gerard O’Neil: 0/4/37.885. URIS DE LA ROQUE: 2008 Selle Français gelding by Capital x Quick StarMARIO DELAURIERS (CAN), Aram Ampagoumian LLC & Mario Deslauriers: 0/4/38.076. ELDORADO V: 2009 Dutch Warmblood gelding by Z x EpilotCAMILA MAZZA DE BENEDICTO (BRA), Yuri Mansur: 0/4/52.287. HARVESTER: 2012 KWPN gelding by Dakar VDL x Labor’s VDL IndoradoERYNN BALLARD (CAN), Ilan Ferder: 1/80.448. BETTINA DES CELTES: 2011 Selle Français mare by New Boy De Logerie x CumanoERYNN BALLARD (CAN), Ilan Ferder: 1/80.459. DIARADO’S FLYING DUTCHMAN: 2010 Oldenburg gelding by Diarado x ElfenlandLAURA CHAPOT (USA), Laura and Mary Chapot: 4/77.5210. IRCOS IV: 2008 BWP gelding by Nabab De Reve x Echo De ThurinKARK COOK (USA), Helen Signe Ostby: 4/77.56 Tags: Darragh Kenny, Nicole Walker, WEF, show jumping, Excellent B, $50000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Grand Prix, Vertige De Galarzacs, Subscribe to the Horse Sport newsletter and get an exclusive bonus digital edition! SIGN UP Email* More from News:MARS Bromont CCI Announces Requirements For US-Based RidersThe first set of requirements to allow American athletes and support teams to enter Canada for the June 2-6 competition have been released.Canadian Eventer Jessica Phoenix Reaches the 100 CCI4*-S MarkPhoenix achieved the milestone while riding Pavarotti at the inaugural 2021 CCI4*-S at the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event.Tribunal Satisfied That Kocher Made Prolonged Use of Electric SpursAs well as horse abuse, the US rider is found to have brought the sport into disrepute and committed criminal acts under Swiss law.Washington International Horse Show Returns to TryonTIEC will again provide the venue for the WIHS Oct. 26-31 with a full schedule of hunter, jumper and equitation classes. We’ll send you our regular newsletter and include you in our monthly giveaways. PLUS, you’ll receive our exclusive Rider Fitness digital edition with 15 exercises for more effective riding. 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first_imgJuly 22, 2017: SaturdayCalls for service: 279 Vehicle Stops: 42  Accidents: 8   Property Checks: 24    Alarms: 4The Police Department assisted with 12 fire and 13 EMS callsBurglary, 1700 block Central Ave., at 5:37amTheft, 1400 block Asbury Ave., at 7:49amVehicle accident, 14th St. & Bay Ave., at 9:28amVehicle accident, 9th St., at 11:16amBurglary, 800 block Delancey Pl., at 1:15pmVehicle accident, 35th St. & Simpson Ave., at 1:21pmTheft, 1700 block Haven Ave., at 1:38pmTheft, 800 block Brighton Pl., at 2:03pmVehicle accident, 10th St. & Asbury Ave., at 2:50pmVehicle accident, 6th St. & Bay Ave., at 3:21pmDomestic violence, 600 block West Ave., at 5:58pmVehicle accident, Revere Pl., at 8:01pmVehicle accident, 2nd St. & bay Ave., at 9:38pmVehicle accident, Arkansas & Bay Ave., at 10:05pmTheft, St. Albans Pl., at 10:46pm July 17, 2017: MondayCalls for service: 182 Vehicle Stops: 19 Accidents: 3   Property Checks: 43      Alarms: 1The Police Department assisted with 12 Fire and 12 EMS callsAssault, 900 block Boardwalk, at 12:23amTheft, unit block Wesley Ave., at 8:30amVehicle accident, 1100 block Asbury Ave., at 2:49pmVehicle accident, 6th St. & Asbury Ave., at 2:58pmVehicle accident, 12th St. & Asbury Ave., at 4:50pmTheft, 1100 block Boardwalk, at 10:38pmDWI, 7th St. & Atlantic Ave., one in custody, at 11:12pm Calls for Service: 1454           Daily Average: 207July 16, 2017: SundayCalls for service: 217 Vehicle   Stops: 26  Accidents: 7    Property Checks: 30      Alarms: 2The Police Department assisted with 9 Fire and 17 EMS callsWarrant, Route 52, one in custody, at 12:00amTheft, 100 block Wesley Ave., at 9:54amVehicle accident, 34th St., at 10:20amVehicle accident, 600 block 6th St., at 10:26amVehicle accident, 1300 block Boardwalk, at 11:50amTheft, Bayview Pl., at 2:29pmTheft, 1200 block Boardwalk, at 2:49pmVehicle accident, 1100 block Ocean Ave., at 3:16pmTheft, 2800 block Central Ave., at 4:19pmVehicle accident, 1200 block Boardwalk, at 5:20pmVehicle accident, 20th St. & Central Ave., at 5:44pmVehicle accident, 9th St. & Wesley Ave., at 6:33pmTheft, 700 block West Ave., at 8:09pmDomestic violence, 1100 block Ocean Ave., at 11:30pm July 19, 2017: WednesdayCalls for service: 176Vehicle Stops: 18  Accidents: 4   Property Checks: 33      Alarms: 7The Police Department assisted with 10 fire and 9 EMS callsDomestic violence, 1400 block Central Ave., at 6:37amTheft, 300 block Atlantic Ave., at 10:49amTheft, 1200 block Boardwalk, at 11:02amTheft, 4200 block Beach, at 11:26amVehicle accident, 48th St. & Central Ave., at 12:32pmTheft, 1200 block Boardwalk, at 1:42pmVehicle accident, 48th St. & Central Ave., at 4:06pmVehicle accident, 34th St., at 4:23pmVehicle accident, 10th St. & West Ave., at 4:27pmTheft, 700 block Pennlyn Pl., at 6:01pmCDS, 3rd St., at 7:14pm July 18, 2017: TuesdayCalls for service: 202 Vehicle Stops: 55  Accidents: 2    Property Checks: 27     Alarms: 2The Police Department assisted with 4 fire and 10 EMS callsFight, 3000 block Simpson Ave., at 3:17amVehicle accident, 32nd St. & Bay Ave., at 2:10pmVehicle accident, 800 block Central Ave., at 6:55pm Ocean City Public Safety Building July 21, 2017: FridayCalls for service: 202 Vehicle Stops: 25  Accidents: 5    Property Checks: 34    Alarms: 1The Police Department assisted with 14 fire and 12 EMS callsVehicle accident, 800 block Atlantic Ave., at 8:41amTheft, 300 block Wesley Ave., at 10:28amVehicle accident, Grenada La., at 12:15pmVehicle accident, 10th St., at 12:43pmVehicle accident, 900 block West Ave., at 3:51pmTheft, 600 block Boardwalk, at 4:57pmVehicle accident, 9th St. & Ocean Ave., at 5:42pmTheft, 800 block Boardwalk, at 6:23pmTheft, 800 block Boardwalk, at 8:00pmDomestic violence, 5100 block Asbury Ave., at 11:31pm July 20, 2017: ThursdayCalls for service: 196Vehicle Stops: 35  Accidents: 7    Property Checks: 23       Alarms: 4The Police Department assisted with 10 fire and 8 EMS callsFraud, 3300 block Simpson Ave., at 10:28amVehicle accident, 800 block Central Ave., at 1:05pmVehicle accident, 13th St. & Central Ave., at 1:34pmVehicle accident, 300 block Bay Ave., at 3:20pmAssault, 400 block Central Ave., at 4:29pmTheft, 300 block E. Atlantic Blvd., at 5:20pmVehicle accident, 1400 block Ocean Ave., at 5:48pmVehicle accident, 13th St. & Central Ave., at 8:00pmVehicle accident, 100 block Boardwalk, at 8:41pmTheft, 1100 block Boardwalk, at 10:07pmVehicle accident, 12th St. & Ocean Ave., at 11:07pm PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENTS:Just a reminder that it is a violation of a City Ordinance to have dogs on the boardwalk anytime during the year.Bicycle riders must obey all Vehicle laws similar to that of a Vehicle       . They must stop at stop signs, traffic lights and ride with the flow of traffic. Bicycle riders are not pedestrians and do not have the same right of way as a pedestrian when crossing the street at an intersection.When traveling on Route 52, remember that New Jersey State Law requires Vehicle s to KEEP RIGHT and pass left. The speed limit is 45 mph for the causeway.By City Ordinance alcohol is not allowed on the beach and boardwalk or other public locations. 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first_imgA 38-inch striped bass took top honors in the Ocean City Fishing Club’s 50th Invitational Surf Fishing Tournament on Saturday.The catch brought the lucky fisherman, Steve Kingsdorf, a member of Delaware Valley Surf Anglers, trophies for biggest fish caught and most points earned in the event. Kingsdorf, who used clam for bait to catch the prize fish midway through an incoming tide, released the striper after judges took measurements.The fish also measured 20.5 inches in girth. Kingsdorf’s catch propelled the DVSA club into first place for the tournament with 38 points.Mike Collins and Bob Dever, tournament co-chairmen, thought the good weather this past weekend helped ensure a good turnout. About 200 anglers from throughout the tri-state area participated in the event, which was rescheduled from its original Oct. 27 date due to a nor’easter that struck the Jersey coast. “Plenty of sunshine and reasonable (50-degree) temperatures, too, for mid-November. A fishing day like this is a gift,” said Dever, the head judge.Twenty-eight fishing teams of up to six anglers each, plus a number of individuals, drove with their gear onto beach, stretching along the ocean’s edge from about 22nd Street to 36th Street. The Ocean City Police Department provided complimentary one-day beach driving passes to give access to 40 designated fishing areas. Ocean City Intermediate School gave access to the building, which served as headquarters for the OCFC event.“The city and school officials were instrumental in helping us reschedule our tournament,” Collins said. “Without their cooperation, we’d have a hard time holding this event, let alone rescheduling it. We’re thankful for everyone involved.”Steve Kingsdorf, a Delaware Valley Surf Anglers member, prepares to release his 38-inch striped bass that earned him and his club top honors.Other than Kingsdorf’s striped bass, Sam Catalano, an RH Custom Rods Team B member, landed the only other officially measurable fish, an 11-inch ling. RH Custom Rods Team B members took home second place club honors with 14 points, while its Team A anglers placed third with 13 points.Lynda Greaves, also a member of RH Custom Rods, Team A, beached two sharks to take home a trophy for most fish points for women. Owen Ostrander landed a shark to take home trophies in the Youth Self-casting, and Individual Most Fish Points, both in the Youth Under 13 categories. Valarie Vishoric, of the Jersey Devils Fishing Club, also caught a shark to win a trophy for Most Fish Points in the Youth Over 13 category.Although Justin Lowery, 11, who came from Woodstown to fish in the tournament with his father, didn’t catch anything, he’s ready to participate in other OCFC tournaments. He won a boys’ bike in the club’s Boys and Girls Surf Fishing Tournament with a 15.5-inch flounder this past August.“The most I caught today was seaweed, and I got the bottom of my pants wet,” Justin said, after fishing in the surf with his father, Jason.  “Maybe next year, I can catch a bigger fish.”Founded in 1913, the Ocean City Fishing Club is the oldest, continuously operating fishing club in the United States.Dylan O’Connell, 11, of Merchantville, shows off a dogfish that helped him win a trophy.last_img read more

first_imgDisgruntled with the humdrum of the busy city life, Barry Hawthorne moved to the Isle of Skye from Cape Town. Captivated by the moody Scottish countryside, it’s here that he set up his pet project – a bakery called The Isle of Skye Baking Company.”I first came to Skye in 1998 and fell in love with the peace and quiet of the countryside,” says Hawthorne. “While living in the city, I never had enough time for my family.”Now, Hawthorne has more than enough time to spend with his wife and daughter, both of whom help him with the bakery, since he does not employ any staff. “My wife does the accounts and I handle the delivery and the baking,” he says.It’s this hands-on involvement that endears him to the local people, concedes the entrepreneur. He pointedly supports local businesses for supplies, which in turn carry his products.However, the Isle of Skye Baking Company does not simply supply its products to local shops. It also has an online shop, where you could order its unique heart-shaped shortbread, as well as oatcakes made with black ale.They also have a new range of products, such as curry oatcakes and gluten-free products lined up for Easter. But, before launching a new product, Hawthorne studies the market through an initial free tasting and constructively uses all the criticism. The tasting also works as a form of advertisement.It’s because of this insight into the market that The Isle of Skye Baking Company was nominated for two awards at the Highlands and Islands Food and Drink Awards, for the Best New Product and Best New Business 2007.”Although we didn’t win the awards, it was such a good feeling to be acknowledged, especially since we’ve only been open for six months,” enthuses Hawthorne. n—-=== Going it alone ===The business: The Isle of Skye Baking CompanyThe brief: Anything that can be baked and may have a gap in the market.Products: Shortbread hearts, seed loaf and oatcakes.Flavours: Raspberry, ginger, lemon, lavender and vanilla shortbread. The biggest sellers are the black ale oatcakes.Finance: Grant of £7,000 from the Highlands and Islands Enterprise Company, given in monthly instalments of £600.Staff: Barry and Liza Hawthorne.Background: Worked as a pastry chef in Cape Town and trained under a German master baker.[http://www.iosbakingco.co.uk]—-=== The pros and cons ===Biggest challenge: It was really hard to get the locals to warm to us. In the Isle of Skye, everyone knows everyone, and if we did something wrong the whole village heard about it immediately.Greatest satisfaction: I absolutely enjoy working with my wife. We are both free to work as and when we want. And, best of all, my little daughter helps us with packing and loves being part of the process.last_img read more

first_img[Photo: Dave Vann] Today, Dopapod’s highly anticipated new album, MEGAGEM, finally dropped, marking the band’s fifth studio release. The eight-track LP comes ahead of Dopapod’s upcoming yearlong hiatus in 2018 and extensive fall tour with The Motet and a three-night New Year’s Eve run across the Northeast.EXCLUSIVE: Dopapod’s Rob Compa Talks Allman Brothers, Phish, And Future Dopapod PlansAs Rob Compa told Live For Live Music in a recent interview, “We recorded [MEGAGEM] over the winter and have gradually finished all the little bits and pieces of it. … We actually recorded enough music to warrant another album coming out sometime next year. We just ended up with too much music for one album, so we are just gonna make two!”In promotion of this latest studio effort, Dopapod will be touring across the country, with their extensive fall tour kicking off yesterday at Theater of Living Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Dopapod will continue on tour through to New Year’s Eve, ringing in 2018 with a two-night run in the Northeast starting on December 30th at the Fete Ballroom in Providence, Rhode Island, and finishing up on December 31st at Paradise in the band’s hometown of Boston, Massachusetts.Listen To Dopapod’s Neal “Fro” Evans Tear Up Brooklyn Bowl With Elephant Wrecking Ball [Full Audio]Following these dates, the band will take a year off. After the announcement of their hiatus back in September, the members of the group clarified their motivations behind their yearlong break, noting that the sabbatical was inspired by the TED Talk, “The Power of Time Off.” After seven years as road dogs, the idea of a break resonated with the members of the band, feeling that the year off would help sustain the longevity of the project and allow its members to focus on self-care.You can take a listen to Dopapod’s new album, MEGAGEM, below.last_img read more

first_imgThis is part of a series about Harvard’s deep connections with Asia.TOKYO — To Sakura Christmas, borders are where the action is.They are messy places where worlds collide: people, cultures, sometimes armies. And the symbols of change that they signify tell us something important about the values of the shifting societies, about what is retained, what is lost, and how hard people fight to retain what they have. Borders also say much about the new societies that emerge from tumult.“I’m very much interested in cultural encounters and the meetings between different sorts of people and societies,” Christmas said.  “Some of the issues I work on now — ethnic tensions, land rights, informal imperialism — still resonate today, especially in China.”Christmas, a doctoral student from Harvard’s History Department, is wrapping up work in the archives and libraries of Tokyo and headed for 10 months of study in Inner Mongolia, an autonomous region in northern China that spans much of China’s northern border.Christmas’ work examines a complex place at a complex time. She’s focusing on the early part of the last century, when Han Chinese migrant farmers pushed into Inner Mongolia, then only thinly occupied by Mongol herders and hunter-gatherers. The farmers’ arrival touched off a scramble for land, a situation that became more complex after 1931, when the Japanese invaded northern China as part of the imperial expansion that was prelude to World War II. The Japanese divided Inner Mongolia into two puppet states, Manchukuo and Mengjiang.For herdsmen, farmers, and even Japanese imperialists, land was an issue, whether as a resource to farm, to graze sheep and cattle on, or to mine. Land and the policies surrounding it, Christmas decided, would provide a useful lens through which to view the region, the people, and the times.“It sounds really boring when you say ‘land tenure,’ but it’s a reconceptualization of the understanding of land and territory,” Christmas said. “Much of my work is on … how imperialism affects the daily lives of people in this period.”Christmas has spent a lot of time in archives and libraries in recent years. She has searched through thousands of documents, photographing or copying those she deemed important. Her research has taken her to three Japanese archives and four Japanese libraries, and has her gearing up to spend the coming months in four far-flung archives in Inner Mongolia.In a way, Christmas has been preparing for her work her whole life. With a Japanese mother and an American father who doesn’t speak Japanese, Christmas was raised at the border of two cultures, learning to read, write, and speak Japanese at home while growing up and attending high school in North Carolina.When she arrived at Harvard in the fall of 2003, she was hungry to learn more about Japan and East Asia. But studying Japan by itself wasn’t satisfying for her. Regular visits to her Japanese grandparents had made the country familiar to her, and not that much different from her U.S. home.Christmas was drawn instead to the region along China’s northern border. She spent the summer after her sophomore year on a fellowship that had her drawing political cartoons — she’d always had an artistic bent — for a newspaper in Mongolia, the nation landlocked between China and Russia.After her junior year she took a year off to study Japanese at Kyoto University on a fellowship funded by the Japanese government. Despite her informal training at home, she felt she needed to improve her Japanese reading and writing skills if she was to conduct research in the language.Three documents unearthed by Harvard doctoral student Sakura Christmas during research at archives in Tokyo. Christmas is conducting historical work there and in China to shine light on the Japanese empire’s expansion into China. Click on the audio clips below to hear Christmas discuss the documents and their significance to her work.On her return to Harvard, Christmas did her senior thesis on Japan-occupied Manchuria, an area in Northeast China encompassing part of Inner Mongolia.  After graduating, she spent a year teaching English in another part of China, Xinjiang, an autonomous region north of Tibet, with the nonprofit group Princeton in Asia. Christmas was there when deadly rioting broke out in the restive region, and grew concerned when some friends got caught up in it, though thankfully they were unharmed.Mark Elliott, the Mark Schwartz Professor of Chinese and Inner Asian History, advised Christmas on her senior thesis and later became, with Associate Professor of History Ian Miller, an adviser on her doctoral thesis.Elliott, who’s known Christmas for seven years now, described her as energetic and cheerful, a good student who works hard and takes advice, but who also has the ability to balance advice against her own instincts. After receiving her undergraduate degree, for example, Elliott knew Christmas wanted to teach for a year in China. Since she was interested in Manchuria, he suggested she go to Dalian, a port city with clean air and a fascinating colonial history, where people were known for having more liberal attitudes.“Instead, she opted for Shihezi, a bleak oil town in northern Xinjiang, where among her colleagues at the university were Han intellectuals ‘exiled’ from teaching posts in China proper,” Elliott said. “The increased tension between Han and Uyghur populations in Xinjiang she witnessed during her stay — which ended in street violence in Urumqi in summer 2009 — made for a challenging year, to say the least. But I’m sure she learned more from those experiences, difficult as some of them were, than she would have had she chosen the more comfortable environment.”Christmas started her doctoral work in the fall of 2009 with an idea of the time and place she wanted to study. Elliott and Miller helped her settle on land as a focus for her interest in the region.“I could narrow down the time, and roughly the place,” Christmas said. “I knew I wanted to work on the borderlands region in China and narrowed it down to the Japanese occupation.”In addition to Japanese imperial policies and the day-to-day use of land by herders and farmers, the emerging role of science in measuring and analyzing land is also important, Christmas said, so her work will include an examination of the role of science, as well as environmental aspects such as desertification from careless use.“In the broadest terms, she’s bringing the history of science and environmental history together in a study of the Japanese empire and its edges,” Miller said. “We have ample studies about how empire functioned in colonial cities and so on, but before Sakura we had little sense for what the Japanese empire looked like from its edges. This is an empire that, at its peak, reached from the Aleutian Islands to Indonesia, from Pacific atolls to the steppes of Manchuria and Mongolia. It is this last area that has attracted Sakura’s attention, and it is among the least studied components of the Japanese imperium, despite its obvious strategic and economic importance.”When asked about key moments in her work, Christmas talks about unearthing documents like the record of the 58,000 head of livestock the Manchukuo puppet government bought from Mongol herdsmen after losing a 1939 border battle with the Soviet Union. The loss shifted the border, placing the herdsmen’s winter grazing grounds in the Soviet Union. The Manchukuo government decided it was better to pay for the sheep and cattle than have people fighting over the grazing lands that remained, but Christmas said that decision ignored the central role that livestock played in the lives of traditional herdsmen.“For me, they’re huge, but in the grand scheme of things, they’re all very small eureka moments,” Christmas said of that and other archival finds. “One thing I like about the archives instead of the libraries is that there’s a surprise every day. You have to recalibrate every day based on the documents you find that day and how they’re going to change your dissertation and the arguments you want to make.”For example, Christmas was originally going to include a chapter on opium cultivation, but found that, because it is illegal, people didn’t want to talk about it and documents were hard to find. After turning up references to licorice extraction, she substituted licorice for opium, as the story of licorice in the region allowed her to cover much the same ground.  Licorice is found in the deep roots of the plant and its harvest, if done carelessly, can lead to desertification in a fragile, dry environment. In addition to environmental impacts, Christmas will also examine the contrast of licorice’s pre-invasion use as a traditional Chinese medicine — used in root form for upset stomachs — and the more industrial processing by Japan, which extracted the essence from the roots and shipped it for use in soy sauce and tobacco products.As Christmas was wrapping up her Tokyo research in late February, she was looking forward to her stay in Inner Mongolia. Practical concerns were for the moment trumping worries about her research, as she still didn’t have an apartment lined up and was hoping a teacher’s apartment would become available.While the prospect of traveling alone to a place unfamiliar to many in the United States might seem daunting to some, it was something Christmas had done before. In fact, she was anticipating getting some open time to begin writing while she waited for permission to visit archives in the regional capital of Hohhot and in the towns of Hailar, Qiqihar, and Chifeng.“Many of these border regions [in the study area] are now settled, but there are similar issues taking place in China today,” Christmas said. “It may be the way Asia might be headed, especially if we forget the past. History is never dead.”last_img read more

first_imgFrench firm completes world’s largest floating solar project in China FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Renew Economy:French-based Ciel & Terre International has announced that its 70 MW floating solar power plant located on top of an old coal mining area in the province of Anhui, China, is now officially complete after several months of tests and monitoring.Ciel & Terre has been developing floating solar PV projects since 2011 and has developed over 120 floating solar PV farms around the world – including in Cambodia, Taiwan, and South Africa.At the end of 2018 construction was completed on a 70MW (peak) floating solar plant in the Chinese province of Anhui, in the country’s east, the largest floating solar plant in the world.The project was constructed by China Energy Conservation Solar Technology and engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) was completed by China Energy Engineering Group Shanxi Electric Power Design Institute.Built atop a former coal-mining area in the Yongqiao district, Suzhou city, the new project will primarily be used to improve the energy structure in the province and the quality of the environment on-site.The idea of floating solar projects continues to gain traction as the economics of solar power generation becomes more attractive and available land becomes harder to come by. Utilising bodies of water for solar generation solves several issues while still generating clean electricity. Further, company’s like Ciel & Terre also focus their efforts on installing floating solar systems on brown fields or remediation ponds in an effort to transform polluted land and water into clean energy generating sites.More: China completes new 70MW floating solar PV project on old coal arealast_img read more

first_imgIn 2010, I was training for my first ultra, logging training runs in the New River Gorge. I wanted to run a 50-miler. But I wrecked some ankle tendons during my training and a subsequent marathon. My gait compensation caused me to develop plantar fasciitis. After that, I struggled to run long distances and gave up my dream of running an ultra.My family and I moved, in 2012, to Farmville, Virginia from Fayetteville, West Virginia. Now I work for my father-in-law’s business, Appomattox River Company, and I’m the BRO athlete kayak fisherman—not exactly bipedal endurance material.This year, on a whim, I decided to join my brother-in-law, John Waite, and his aptly named Team Bonkers at the Virginia 24 Hour Run for Cancer in Hampton on April 25 and 26. My beloved grandmother died from cancer in 2008, and it still stung. I thought running in her honor, as well as all who’ve fought that fight, would be cathartic.When the day arrived, I was anxious. I hadn’t done any training. Though I still told people my goal was 50 miles when asked. I always set ridiculous goals and blurt them out. It’s some sort of absurd personal challenge Tourettes. What was I thinking?The 24 Hour Cancer run was held at Sandy Bottom Nature Park on a 3.75-mile lollipop loop. My sister was running too, and her goal was to stay active for 12 hours and walk/run at least a marathon. The race started at 7:30am. I ran the first lap as planned and then met my sister. We walked the second lap together and chatted about our families.I fell in love with this event from the start. The trails were full of determined people. The atmosphere was warm, and the cause was just. Because of the course layout, you passed people over and over. It created an intimacy, a sense of strong camaraderie between “strangers” on the trail. Everyone smiled in passing, slapped high fives and offering encouraging words. Each lap started and ended in the same spot. So you got a chance to visit your team tent and recharge after every loop. Big props to the volunteers who manned the start station and counted everyone’s laps!The rain came at 10 a.m., way earlier than expected. The temperature never rose into the 60’s as forecasted. At 15 miles, I changed my socks for the first time. It’d been raining steady and changing socks, then sitting in my truck for a moment, felt like heaven.Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 11.32.17 AM Photo by Brian VincentThe miles and the rain wore on. Soon I was in uncharted territory. As I rounded the bend to reach 33.75, I spotted my sister at the .625 marker.  She was doing an out and back to the marker to finish with her first 50K! She persevered through some pain, and now she was closing in on her personal best mileage. We ran her last .625 in together. Pumping our limbs, we both started giggling and asking, “My arms are moving, REALLY fast, are my legs moving?” It was my favorite moment of the race.Two of my buddies, Joe O’Brien and Shane Cochran, also finished with personal best distances. I felt proud of everyone’s efforts, especially given the conditions. By now the trail was a wet, muddy mess and the rain was still steady.After my sister’s triumph, I hit lap number 10. It was a struggle. The sun began to drop below the horizon and the temps went with it. I finished up lap 10—37.5 miles—and stumbled to my truck. I’d forgotten gloves and my hands were frozen. I wanted one more change of socks and an overhaul of my clothing. I sank into my seat, heat pumping in the truck, and thought about quitting. I could be proud of 37.5 miles for my first ultra.Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 11.31.49 AMI switched the Farm To Feet Asheville Lows for the Blue Ridge Compression socks around mile 15. The compression socks served me extremely well over 22 plus miles. I was reluctant to strip them off. But when I changed into a fresh pair of Roanoke ¼ Crews I started to rally. The Farm To Feet socks impressed me.I slipped out of the truck and back into the rain soaked night. As I passed our tent my brother-in-law spotted me, “ I thought you were done.”“So did I,” I replied.He’d run a marathon in the morning, pacing a friend, gone to my niece’s soccer games, then come back to our tent, brewed chicken broth and cheered us on. Now he was suited up for a couple nighttime miles. He had 4 more laps to hit 40, a good training run for his upcoming race, the Massanutten 100. My brother-in-law is an ultra running beast.There were a lot of beasts out there. So many people endured the weather and pounded out miles. I saw folks carrying American flags and people carrying the names of loved ones lost. I saw elite endurance athletes pushing the limits and shattering records, and everyday folks pushing their personal limits. The Men and Women’s winners crushed 133.25 and 131 miles! It was truly awe-inspiring.I had three laps to go, plus an out-and-back 1.25 to finish with 50. The next few laps were a blur of pain, ankle deep mud and rain. There were some tough moments in those last 12.5 miles. With the rain beating down and my headlamp lighting the muddy trail, I finally rounded the bend and hit the start-stop line for mile 48.75.At 12:50 a.m., I started the walk to the .625 mark. At .25 my left foot exploded with searing pain. I stopped and cursed. I wondered if I could finish. When I got to the marker I just stood there, thinking about my grandmother and that long month my family spent by her bedside as she fought the cancer eating away at her bones. I thought about all the other folks in my life who’ve been touched by this disease, and I started walking back.I noticed a discarded protein packet, on the side of the trail and remember saying, “I don’t think I can stop, stoop, and pick that up.”  No one else was around. I could just leave it.But in those moments, funny stuff enters your head. I looked at the trash and realized that if I didn’t grab it, my whole journey would be tainted. So I bent over and picked it up. It seemed to take forever. I walked, looking at the trash in my hand. It felt so burdensome. I limped, favoring that busted foot, towards the finish line where I knew I’d find my team and a trashcan.In the end, I got my 50. It took 18 hours. Elite ultra runners crush 100’s in that time. I know that, but for me it was a huge triumph. The Virginia 24 Hour Run for Cancer was a magical moment. I want to thank all the volunteers and the race director, George, for all they do. This is a great event, even with bad weather. I may have to climb out of my kayak for another ultra. There is fun to be had out there past the marathon, just make sure you train first. The “off the couch” 50 is not recommended. Team Bonkers finished ninth out of 18 teams, and I’m proud of every person who put in those miles. Well done!last_img read more

first_img July 1, 2002 Assistant Editor Regular News Lubitz is ready to lead Lubitz is ready to lead New State Courts Administrator is up to speed Amy K. Brown Assistant Editor Filling the shoes of former State Courts Administrator Ken Palmer, who died last April after a battle with cancer, is not an enviable task. Palmer was one of the longest-serving state administrators in the nation, was responsible for innovative programs that helped keep Florida’s judicial system a model for the rest of the country, and he was respected and admired by the state’s entire judicial system.But, Robin Lubitz hopes he’s up for the task.Lubitz began work this January as the new State Courts Administrator, and he’s looking toward the future. After visits to circuits across the state, Lubitz is quickly learning the ropes.“I’m very pleased that Rob has taken substantial initiative in reviewing the work of the office of court administration, and in his efforts to go around the state and meet our judges,” said Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Charles Wells. “The work of the office of court administration is essential to the administration of the trial courts, and I think Rob is off to a wonderful start in building relationships with trial judges.”Lubitz’s excitement is rooted in a reverence of the system.“In my opinion, Florida’s court system is one of, if not the premier court system in the country,” he said. “Those in Florida probably do not realize what a great reputation it has outside, nationally. I know when I was in North Carolina, when we looked for ways to improve our system, for example, to improve our court education program, to implement family court, to put in performance accountability standards, or to provide more access to pro se litigants, we continually ended up looking at Florida. It’s been at the forefront, I think, of excellence and innovation.”Lubitz doesn’t grant that kind of praise lightly. Having worked in the court systems of both Pennsylvania, which was a totally decentralized system, and North Carolina, in which almost all budgeting and decision-making is done through a central organization, Lubitz has experience in a wide range of court operations. He hopes his experience in such vastly different systems will help him handle Florida’s hybrid mix.“I’ve been involved in the courts one way or another my entire career,” he said, “but I didn’t move up purely through the court administration ladder.”His first foray into the courts system came through his work as a court programs analyst in Philadelphia. Then, in the late 1970s, he was hired as the associate director of the Pennsylvania Sentencing Commission, where he was involved in a total overhaul of sentencing and corrections in the state.After 11 years in that position, Lubitz was hired to head North Carolina’s newly formed Sentencing Policy Advisory Commission, which was designed to correct the state’s serious sentencing disparities. For his work revitalizing the system, North Carolina was awarded the “Innovations in American Government” award from the Ford Foundation, the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, and the Council for Excellence in Government — an accomplishment he is still very proud of.“In North Carolina in the early ’90s, it was a system that was totally broken. It was primarily where a judge would impose a sentence, and that sentence was absolutely meaningless because of prison overcrowding and other problems,” he said. “Offenders were just being released after serving as low as 15 percent of their sentence, and in some cases, they were out in as little as one or two weeks after the judge imposed sentence. It was a system where everybody was pointing fingers and blaming each other for the problem.”Most recently, Lubitz served as chief deputy for the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts, helping to manage a court system with more than 5,000 employees and a budget in excess of $360 million.“Perhaps the most impressive thing were the people in North Carolina who had such a high opinion of Rob Lubitz, and his work there and his integrity” said incoming Chief Justice Harry Lee Anstead. “We found that when we talked to justices, both active and retired, who had known him and his work as deputy court administrator, they were just uniform in their high praise.”And, just as Lubitz overcame challenges in North Carolina, he plans to overcome the next major challenge to Florida’s court system: Revision 7.Passed by the legislature in 1998, Revision 7 to Article V of the state constitution will transfer the bulk of the state courts system’s operating costs from the counties to the state by July 1, 2004. The cost of funding the system per year is estimated as much as $500 million, not including the costs associated with public defenders, state attorneys, court-appointed counsel, and clerks of the court offices.“I don’t think people in the legal community realize at this point how important this is, and what the stakes are for our court system,” Lubitz said. “I think it will be the major defining event for the courts in modern history. Like any major change, there are potential benefits and a potential downside.”While the potential downside — that the courts may not be adequately funded — is apparent, the potential benefits may not be so easily recognizable.“The issue as we move to state funding is that an awful lot of funding of the courts is now county funded,” he said. “Many of the innovative programs — many of the programs that help citizens get to the courtroom, the programs that are more problem-solving, family court, a lot of the innovative things working with children — are county funded. The key thing that we want to make sure is that those programs are continued.”Some may argue those aren’t “essential” court programs, and OSCA should focus solely on securing funding for the day-to-day operation of the courts. But, Lubitz said, it’s those programs that put Florida at the forefront and allow the courts to provide services to the public not found in other states.“There are also other potential positives, depending on how we approach Revision 7,” he said. “It’s an opportunity for us to really define how we want our courts to work and to take a more unified perspective as a single, independent branch of government, instead of a collection of these 20 different groups.“I think it’s an opportunity for us to speak with one voice. One of the things in the work we’re doing is we’re learning that although each of our circuits do the same things, we all do them differently.”Another potential benefit, he said, is that by identifying best practices, circuits can exchange ideas about the most efficient and economically sound practices. And, circuits or counties that have historically been underfunded may be provided more resources.Though it’s possible, Lubitz thinks the worst case scenario — inadequately funded Florida courts — is not a likely situation.“If we were to see significant deficits of funding, and I’m not suggesting we will, that could affect civil trials. Alabama has actually suspended all jury civil trials for five or six months. I’m not suggesting that would happen here, but, obviously, processing the cases is dependent on funding, and with inadequate funding you would have slow-down in the case processing in criminal and civil, you would have the business community upset about the time delays in getting resolution of issues, you would then have the public more frustrated, and one of the things we want to do is improve public confidence in our court system. I think it could hurt in many ways,” he said. “I think that’s the worst case scenario, and I don’t think that will be the case.”While he has many plans for Florida’s courts, Revision 7 will take center stage for the next few years.“It kind of swamps over all the other things,” he said. “But, I think tied to that is our continuing striving to improve public confidence in the courts — our major underlying challenge. We need to do that by continuing to improve the efficiency of the courts, access to the public, how we treat the public — we treat them in ways so that they understand what’s taking place with levels of politeness and courtesy, and that we educate the public about what the courts do, why we do it, and the importance of the independence of the judiciary.”Probably more so than anyone, Lubitz recognizes that he’s come in on the firing line, but he’s keeping a sense of humor and an open mind.“I guess that comes with the territory,” he mused. “I knew that we were moving toward this change, but I don’t think I realized the enormity of it or the complexity of it until I actually got here and realized all it’s about. But, again, it’s an opportunity and I think we have to look at it as an opportunity. We need to do what we possibly can do to make the best of it.”last_img read more

first_imgThe Regulatory Process Is BrokenWhile every business in America has a hit list of specific regulations they want reformed, a larger and more consequential issue is the need to reform the regulatory process itself. Every day, businesses of all sizes are confronted with proposed regulations ostensibly mandated or authorized by federal law. In reality, Congressional statutes are so broadly written that they amount to little more than loosely worded directions to unelected regulators.As if this wasn’t bad enough, regulators often issue so called “Guidance.” I say so called, because these interpretations have the look and feel of regulations, but they haven’t been vented though the Notice and Comment period required of regulations. The result is a mish mash of legal confusion, which has made a mockery of the Administrative Procedures Act. In addition to lobbying for reform of specific regulations, credit unions and all regulated entities have a vital interest in the reform of the regulatory process itself.When is guidance Guidance?“A central distinction in administrative law is between those agency pronouncements that amount to ‘substantive rules’ and those that are merely ‘interpretative rules, general statements of policy, or rules of agency organization, procedure, or practice’” explained Judge Ronnie Abrams of the Southern District of New York explained earlier this year. “The former category of agency actions creates new obligations or rights, must be subjected to the Administrative Procedure Act’s notice-and-comment procedures and carries the force of law. The latter category — of interpretative rules and general policy statements—merely clarifies existing law, see id.; need not undergo notice and comment, and lack the force of law.” (Segarra v. Fed. Reserve of New York, No. 13 CIV. 7173 RA, 2014 WL 1660040, at *5 (S.D.N.Y. Apr. 23, 2014, citations omitted).The problem is that this crucial distinction is becoming, and in some cases has already become, a distinction without a difference. Credit unions have experienced this trend first hand. For example, last December the NCUA issued a “supervisory Guidance: on indirect lending activities involving private student loans (LETTER NO.: 13-CU-15), the accompanying memo outlined the points of emphasis that examiners are to consider when evaluating these programs. An accompanying Letter to Credit Unions explains that “NCUA has developed the enclosed Supervisory Letter to clarify the agency’s supervisory expectations about direct and indirect PSL products [.  I encourage you to review this letter and to contact your regional office or state supervisory authority if you have any questions on this subject.”How many of you have examined this or similar NCUA guidance, concluded that NCUA’s suggested approach to compliance wasn’t the approach best suited for complying with the law and simply moved on to the next issue? My guess is that your examiner said you are mistaken in believing that guidance, in whatever form it takes, is not binding on your credit union. The problem is, that agencies have become increasingly enamored of Guidance’s, Q&A’s and letters to the institutions they regulate. After all, it is much easier and quicker to publish a document than go through the cumbersome process of publishing a proposed regulation reacting to comments, and then promulgating a final mandate.A second area of regulatory abuse comes courtesy of agency interpretations designed specifically to reinterpret existing legal interpretations.Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, exempt employees are entitled to fewer protections than are non-exempt employees. It’s a big deal and employers need a consistent regulatory backdrop against which to make employment decisions. But if you employ mortgage originators, how you should classify them depends largely on what political party controls the presidency. In 2006, the DOL reversed its prior interpretation and concluded that mortgage originators were exempt employees. In 2010, the DOL reinterpreted the law to once again classify originators as non-exempt. This term, the Supreme Court is mercifully hearing in a case in which it will decide whether or not the latest interpretation is, in fact, a rule change subject to the Administrative Procedures Act.If this tendency towards reinterpreting law was limited to the DOL, no one would care. But the EEOC and the National Labor Relations Board, just to name two other agencies, have used this quasi-judicial process to clamp down on perceived discrimination against ex-convicts seeking employment and employers seeking to punish employers for comments they make on the Internet, respectively.Increasingly, we are in a policy Neverland where the competing parties reinterpret laws so that they say what they think they should say and Presidents simply refuse to enforce laws they don’t like. In addition, regulators who are unrestrained by the regulations they are supposed to be interpreting are ideally suited to o replace your credit union’s judgments with their own This is why the overuse of the “safety and soundness” mantra is so pernicious.Here are two changes that would go a long way towards ending regulatory overreach. First, let’s amend the Administrative Procedures Act so that even interpretations and guidance are categorically subject to notice and comment periods. Agencies could still issue Guidance, but stakeholders could weigh in on an agency’s logic and would know that additional regulation is coming.Secondly, let’s limit in statute the amount of deference that courts can grant to agency interpretations of Congressional statutes. Congress would be forced to more carefully draft its legislation if it knew it couldn’t wait for agencies to give substance to laws. What a concept.For example, whether you support or oppose the CFPB, there is something undemocratic about Congress empowering the CFPB to decide what a Qualified Mortgage is, and then criticizing the CFPB for the regulation it was charged with writing.Reform of the Administrative Procedure Act may not sound all that exciting but it would give all credit unions a clearer more consistently applied regulatory framework. It would also help restore faith in our political system by making sure we remain a nation of laws, not regulatory whimsy. That is reform we can all get behind. ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Henry Meier As General Counsel for the New York Credit Union Association, Henry is actively involved in all legislative, regulatory and legal issues impacting New York credit unions. Whether he’s joining … Web: www.nycua.org Detailslast_img read more