Cavaliers Get Big Overtime Win Over Raptors in Game 1

After surviving a tough seven-game series with the Indiana Pacers, the Cleveland Cavaliers only got one day to rest before they faced off against the Toronto Raptors in the second round on Tuesday night. Defeating the top team in the Eastern Conference was always going to be a hard task, but getting almost no rest made the Cavaliers big underdogs going into Game 1.

The Cavaliers looked like an extremely tired team throughout the first quarter. They struggled to shoot the ball with tired legs. After only scoring 19 points in the opening quarter, Cleveland trailed Toronto by 14 points. The team miraculously came alive in the second quarter. A 38-point quarter put the Cavaliers within three points at halftime.

Toronto jumped out to a 13-point lead early in the third quarter, but Cleveland refused to give up. They shrank the deficit to only five points before the start of the fourth quarter. The Cavaliers continued to battle throughout the final quarter before tying the game with just 30 seconds left on the clock. Both teams missed game-winning shots in the final seconds to send the game to overtime.

The first 48 minutes of the game were exhausting, so both teams struggled on offense in overtime. The Raptors were down by one point with just 3.4 seconds on the clock when Fred VanVleet missed a three-pointer. After Tristan Thompson secured the rebound, the Cavaliers won the first game of the series 113-112.

The Raptors were the best home team in the NBA this season, so pulling off the upset was huge for the Cavaliers. They will look to steal another game in Toronto when Game 2 is played on Thursday, May 3. Winning the first two games will put Cleveland in a great position to advance to the conference finals.

Broken Bridge Shuts Down Charleston Interstate

A broken cable underneath the James B. Edwards Bridge on the Wando River forced officials to close part of the Mark Clark Expressway on Monday. The cable is believed to have snapped sometime in the last month, as the South Carolina Department of Transportation inspects the bridge on a regular basis.

 

On Monday, inspectors discovered that one of the eight large cables holding the bridge’s concrete sections together had broken. The westbound side of the bridge was immediately shut down and the South Carolina Department of Transportation announced that the bridge would be closed for at least two days for assessment.

 

The James B. Edwards Bridge was completed in 1989 and was designed by the FIGG Engineering Group. The Florida-based engineering firm also designed the pedestrian bridge that recently collapsed on the campus of the Florida International University. The James B. Edwards Bridge cost $32 million to build and is of a box girder design, a type that is uncommon in South Carolina. The bridge is 7,900 feet long and includes 92 different cables.

 

This is not the first time the bridge has had structural issues. Soon after it was completed, the bridge’s joints had to be replaced after they started rupturing. In October 2016,  another large cable had to be repaired after inspections revealed that it was damaged..

 

The Wando Bridge on South Carolina Highway 41 was just completed in July 2017. Drivers attempting to travel to Daniel Island will have to detour to the Wando Bridge. They can also drive all the way through Charleston to enter the island on the west side using the Don N. Holt Bridge that spans the Cooper River. Drivers attempting to journey to Mount Pleasant from Charleston can use the eastbound lanes on the James B. Edwards Bridge or opt to use the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge.

“Roseanne” Reboot Proves Popular in Midwest

More than two decades after it went off the air, “Roseanne” has returned to the airwaves. The same cast returns, with the characters in much the same situation, but 20 years later. Of course, times have changed, and the show reflects some of the changes that have occurred since the family last entertained America on television.

The rebooted series finds Roseanne and her family divided over politics, as some of them are ardent supporters of President Trump (like star and co-creator Roseanne Barr herself) and others find him deplorable. They manage to love one another despite this divide, which strikes a hopeful tone in an America increasingly torn apart by political differences. The show has proven especially popular in the midwest, where President Trump’s popularity is fairly high.

After millions of people tuned in to the first episode, President Trump personally congratulated Barr on her success. Having spent a great deal of time as a television personality, he has a keen understanding of how challenging it is to achieve stellar ratings. So far, the show has continued to do well. While it has highlighted ordinary working class Americans whose ideals line up with those President Trump espouses, some elements of the comedy have a more liberal bent, including a storyline involving a planned surrogate pregnancy and another featuring a young boy who prefers to dress in female clothing.

Although the series has not been on very long, its early success suggests that it will remain on the air for some time to come. In addition to making audiences laugh, “Roseanne” is sparking conversations about how to peacefully coexist with friends and relatives across the current political divide. It will be interesting to see how this iconic sit-com family continues to navigate the realities of a 21st-century America under President Trump.

Vietnam War Hero Gets South Carolina’s Top Civilian Honor

As a recipient of the U.S. Military’s highest honor, the Congressional Medal of Honor, retired Maj. General James Livingston has now received the highest civilian honor from his home state of South Carolina.

 

S.C. Governor Henry McMaster awarded the Order of the Palmetto to Livingston for his ongoing and extraordinary contributions to the state. The award was presented at a small ceremony at the South Carolina Statehouse on Tuesday.

 

Livingston entered the U.S. Marine Corps as a second lieutenant in 1962. By 1966 he was the Commanding Officer of the Marine detachment assigned to the The Wasp, a U.S. Naval aircraft carrier. He was sent to Vietnam in 1967. It was his heroic action during the Battle of Dai Do that landed him the Medal of Honor. Livingston participated in direct hand-to-hand combat, was wounded three times and was still firing at the enemy as two fellow Marines dragged him to safety.

 

Livingston served two tours in Vietnam. He retired from active duty in 1995 at the rank of Major General. Entering civilian life in South Carolina, he continued to distinguish himslef and make enormous contributions to businesses and community organizations, including the National D-Day Museum, the Red Cross, the Boy Scouts of America, the Salvation Army and the LSU Medical Foundations.

 

At the Palmetto Awards ceremony, Livingston repeated his favorite quote from Dr. Martin Luther King — that a man, “should be judged by the content of his character and not by the color of his skin.” He also said he was honored to receive South Carolina’s highest civilian honor because it was, “supported by the governor and friends.”

 

The Order of the Palmetto was created by governor John West in 1971 to recognize people who make outstanding contributions to their local communities.

Charleston Bridge Closed for Emergency Repairs:

A snapped cable inside of a bridge forced the closure of one stretch of I-526 in Charleston in order to effect emergency repairs. The damage was discovered by engineers with the South Carolina Department of Transportation while performing a routine inspection. This same bridge, which spans the Wando River, also suffered a snapped cable back in 2016. Since that time, SCDOT has conducted weekly inspections.

 

State officials say there is no timetable for when the bridge will reopen. There is concern that the bridge might have to remain closed through the busy Memorial Day weekend. This will have the greatest impact on motorists and buses making daily commutes from areas like Mount Pleasant, Sullivan’s Island, and Isle of Palms. A closure through Memorial Day could potentially affect thousands of tourists making for the Lowcountry beach for the holiday. Your text to link…

 

In the meantime, SCDOT has worked with local law enforcement agencies to set up detours during the period when the Wando River bridge on I-526 is closed. Two detours have been established to accommodate affected traffic. Mount Pleasant Mayor Will Haynie said everyone will be affected by the closure of the bridge. He urged all residents to be patient and courteous while the closure is in effect. The closure has resulted in stalled traffic that caused problems for parents getting their children to school and people trying to get to work on time.

 

The bridge over the Wando River was originally opened in 1989. Roughly 35,000 vehicles use that stretch of I-526 every day.

New Psychiatric To Open In Middleton

In Middleton, there are plans to build a 72-bed hospital for psychiatric patients. The plans for it have just been approved by the Middleton City Council this past Tuesday. They also approved a tax increment financing amount of $1.2 million.

The facility will be called Miramount Behavioral Health, and it will be located in the Airport Road Business Park. The name of the company behind the plans is a for-profit called Strategic Behavioral Health.

The company is based in Memphis, Tennessee, and runs a total of 10 mental hospitals in 6 states. They already operate a hospital in Wisconsin, which is located in Greenbay. Strategic Behavioral Health is building facilities in two new states.

According to Jim Shaheen, the president of the company, construction will begin this summer. By the time Summer 2019 rolls around, the facility will be in use.

In Dane County, there are already about 90 beds for patients who need psychiatric care. The majority of these beds are located in general hospitals. The existence of Miramount Behavioral Health will add more beds in the county for psychiatric patients. This new behavioral health center will keep people with mental health crisis from going to jail, as well as to Oshkosh Medical Center. It will make things more convenient for authorities and dignified for patients.

Some people herald the new behavioral health center as a good thing. However, many people are concerned about the new facility, bringing up incidents that have happened at other facilities owned by Strategic Behavioral Health. For example, this past January, 10 minors ran away from a facility in Charlotte, North Carolina. The company has faced 9 immediate jeopardy violations within the past several years.

South Carolina Gaining Popularity With Maryland’s State Bird

Beautiful Baltimore orioles seems to be falling in love with the state of South Carolina in record numbers. Now bird experts have an interesting theory about why it might be happening.

 

The Baltimore oriole is most associated with the state of Maryland where it is the official state bird and has a baseball team named after it. But in the past four years South Carolina has been drawing hundreds of the orange-and-black fliers to stay over during winter months.

 

Scientists speculate that rapidly changing climate patterns due to global warming are shifting the migration patterns of orioles. However, a more unusual theory is gaining traction among bird experts — and it involves grape jelly.

 

Backyard bird lovers know that putting out grape jelly is a sure way to attract Baltimore orioles to feeders. In recent years there has been a significant increase in the number of people deploying the grape jelly tactic.

 

Scientists say the birds may have caught on. Baltimore orioles have discovered that if they want a plentiful supply of one of their favorite treats, South Carolina is the place to be. The people of the Palmetto State are putting out so much jelly that bird experts speculate it is preventing more orioles from migrating to the tropics for the winter.

 

Why make all that effort to flying hundreds of miles south when the weather stays warmer now in South Carolina year-round? It’s an added bonus that there’s also an abundant supply of yummy jelly to snack on.

 

The average temperature in the state’s Lowcountry is now more than 51 degrees Fahrenheit. In 1985 it was about 48 degrees. That means winter months that are milder and tolerable for orioles, which generally migrate to Florida or cross the Gulf of Mexico to flee the winter cold.

The Midges Are Coming Out

Finally, the weather is getting warm in Wisconsin. The temperatures are going up into the 70s after a chilly spring. Unfortunately, the midges are coming out. Midges are small insects, also known as lake flies, that fly around people’s heads and buzz. They are not mosquitoes. As a matter of fact, they do not have mouths. Midges do not sting or bite.

The life cycle of midges includes searching for mates, reproducing, laying eggs and dying off. Usually, the lifespan of a midge ranges from roughly 3 to 7 days.

Midges generally annoy people, though they are liked in some situations. For example, anglers like them because they can be used to construct fishing ties. Also, various animals such as bats, birds, fish and ducks eat them. Creatures consume midges, their larvae and their eggs. Midges make up the most frequently occurring insects in aquatic systems.

Right when warm weather first comes, male midges fly around in swarms. Female midges fly into those swarms and the genders mate with each other. After mating, females lay their eggs in Lake Michigan, among other places. The eggs fall down to the bottom of the lake, where they develop during the year. As they go through their larval stage, the young midges go up through the water and come out as adult insects.

Midge populations are currently at their highest, though their numbers will eventually go down within the next week or two. McKinley Marina, in Milwaukee, has seen especially large amounts of midges. Greenbay and Lake Winnebago are places that usually get large midge inundations every year. In these places, the midge populations surge so high that you can hear a hum coming from the bodies of water.

If you find yourself walking into an annoying cloud of these little insects, just be thankful that they are around because it means that various animals are being fed.

Sprint Announces First Profit in 11 Years

On the heels of last week’s news of the planned merger between Sprint and T-Mobile, Sprint announced Wednesday that the company has turned its first annual profit in 11 years. Sprint also named Michael Combes as the company’s new chief executive officer (CEO), effective by the end of May. Combes recently moved into the role of president and chief financial officer (CFO) after he moved from Altice to Sprint. Outgoing CEO Marcelo Claure will move into the role of executive chairman, replacing Masayoshi Son.

Claure reiterated his commitment to Sprint, stating that the changes will enable him to work with T-Mobile CEO John Legere as the two companies campaign to gain federal approval of the proposed merger between the telecommunications giants. Work has already started as both Claure and Legere have previously met with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in an effort to persuade the governing bodies to approve the merger plan.

Sprint’s fiscal year ended at the end of March and the company reported a profit of $7.4 billion, thanks in large part to the big bump garnered as part of the President Donald Trump’s tax reform bill. The Overland Park-based company added 44,000 new subscribers in the first three months of 2018, bringing its total customer base up to 54.625 million people. In contrast, T-Mobile boasts a total subscriber base of 74 million subscribers according to figure released at the end of March.

Tensions are high on the Overland Park campus as questions of job security are heightened in light of the proposed merger. Despite the profitable fiscal year, Sprint recently announced plans to lay off 500 employees from their 6,000-employee campus. The effects of the proposed merger have yet to be seen.

Des Moines Moves Up To No. 4 In ‘Best City’ Ranking

It seems that life in Des Moines, Iowa, just keeps getting better and better. The city earned the No. 4 spot on the 10 Best Cities in America list issued in April by U.S. News & World Report. Just two years ago the Iowa capital city ranked 11th. Now it is solidly in the Top 10.

Not only is Des Moines 4th best, but Iowa itself was ranked as the No. 1 state by U.S. News & World Report. The Midwest farm state might best be known for growing corn and raising hogs. But Iowa has the highest high school graduation rate in the country, and it consistently rates first or second in literacy. It also ranks No. 3 for healthcare, No. 2 for affordable housing and No. 1 in infrastructure. That latter category includes best access to high speed Internet in the nation.

Des Moines Mayor Frank Crownie has been at the helm of his city since 2004. He told reporters he was thrilled that Des Moines achieved such a high ranking from a respected national publication, but was quick to give credit to his entire staff. He also gave a shout-out to the many volunteer community groups in Des Moines that work hard to make this city special.

The city government of Des Moines gets a lot of help from involved citizens that take on a variety of ongoing city improvement projects. For example, the Des Moises Legacy Foundation recently launched a city-wide community playground project that places new playgrounds for kids where needed, and keeps existing playground clean and safe with well-maintained equipment.

Another unique program is the Des Moines ‘Age-Friendly’ Initiative which works to make the city an excellent, service-rich environment for people over the age of 50.

A robust private-public partnership clearly has the city of Des Moines humming along better than ever in 2018.