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Holiday shoppers line up outside an Office Depot store in Lawrence, Kan., Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014. The store was set to open at 6:00 Thanksgiving evening. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

Early-bird shoppers turn out on Thanksgiving in new holiday tradition

Thursday, November 27, 2014

NEW YORK — Early-bird shoppers headed to stores on Thanksgiving in what’s becoming a new holiday tradition. In the Chicago suburb of Naperville, Illinois, the parking lot of a Wal-Mart store was full roughly 30 minutes before Thanksgiving deals started at 6 p.m., including $199 iPad minis. In New York City, there were 500 people in line by the time …

Eiffel Tower protest turns woolly

Thursday, November 27, 2014

PARIS (ap) — Disgruntled farmers have brought their sheep to the Eiffel Tower to protest wolf attacks, and what they call the government’s anti-farmer environmental policies. The woolly protesters munched grass near the Paris monument while their owners urged tougher measures against wolf attacks. The government says its existing plan on preventing attacks …

Casino seeks exemption to serve booze longer

Thursday, November 27, 2014

HARTFORD, Conn. — At Connecticut’s casinos, you can gamble around the clock, but state law cuts off cocktail service soon after midnight. The CEO of the Foxwoods Resort Casino says that puts them at a disadvantage in the region — and he wants the state to revisit the policy. Atlantic City casinos serve alcohol at all hours, liquor is served until 4 a.m. …

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Amherst Select Board candidates debate The Retreat student housing project
  • KEVIN GUTTING
Sara Pruss, associate professor of geosciences at Smith College, listens to a research presentation by students in her class, Invertebrate Paleontology and the History of Life, on Monday. At right is student Kenny Clark.

    KEVIN GUTTING Sara Pruss, associate professor of geosciences at Smith College, listens to a research presentation by students in her class, Invertebrate Paleontology and the History of Life, on Monday. At right is student Kenny Clark. Purchase photo reprints »

  • CAROL LOLLIS
Robert Saalfrank says grace at the Northampton Thanksgiving day meal.

    CAROL LOLLIS Robert Saalfrank says grace at the Northampton Thanksgiving day meal. Purchase photo reprints »

  • CAROL LOLLIS
back left, Emilie Hamilton, of Amherst, Jim Ilnicky of Leveret, and on the right, Joe Cerniawski, serve themselves  Thanksgiving day dinner community dinner put on by the Amherst Survival Center on Wednesday afternoon.

    CAROL LOLLIS back left, Emilie Hamilton, of Amherst, Jim Ilnicky of Leveret, and on the right, Joe Cerniawski, serve themselves Thanksgiving day dinner community dinner put on by the Amherst Survival Center on Wednesday afternoon. Purchase photo reprints »

  • CAROL LOLLIS
Justin Griswold  of Amherst, walks to his car in the Whole Foods parking lot Wednesday afternoon.

    CAROL LOLLIS Justin Griswold of Amherst, walks to his car in the Whole Foods parking lot Wednesday afternoon. Purchase photo reprints »

  • CAROL LOLLIS
Ute  Brandes in her living room holding a picture of her son who designed their home in Belchertown where she and her husband,  Werner Brandes live.

    CAROL LOLLIS Ute Brandes in her living room holding a picture of her son who designed their home in Belchertown where she and her husband, Werner Brandes live. Purchase photo reprints »

  • CAROL LOLLIS
Brian Laramee, of Granby, cleans the gutters out of a house on Pomeroy Terrace in Northampton Tuesday morning.

    CAROL LOLLIS Brian Laramee, of Granby, cleans the gutters out of a house on Pomeroy Terrace in Northampton Tuesday morning. Purchase photo reprints »

Long-awaited asbestos cleanup to begin at former Belchertown State School

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

BELCHERTOWN — Work on removing contaminants from areas of the former Belchertown State School will begin as soon as next week. Bay State Contracting of Springfield has been awarded a $40,800 contract to remove asbestos debris from the administration building of the former state school, according to Mark …

After 69 years in Easthampton, Peter Pan Café seized by state for nonpayment of taxes

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

EASTHAMPTON — One of Easthampton’s oldest bars, the Peter Pan Café, is closed after it was seized by the state last week for owing $58,000 in taxes. The bar at 46 Pleasant St., which opened as the Peter …

Storm on Thanksgiving menu

Monday, November 24, 2014

MINEOLA, N.Y. — A nor’easter is expected to develop Wednesday along the East Coast just as millions of travelers are heading to their Thanksgiving destinations. “I would pack your patience,” said Robert Sinclair Jr., of AAA New York. The storm, forecast to dump rain along the coast and …

With auction set, offshore wind turbines one step closer to reality

Monday, November 24, 2014

BOSTON — Massachusetts is one step closer to seeing its coastline waters dotted with wind turbines as federal officials announced Monday that an auction date has been set for wind energy leases to develop more than 742,000 acres off the coast. The sale is set for Jan. 29. …

Russia says oil slump, sanctions are costing it billions

Monday, November 24, 2014

MOSCOW — International sanctions and slumping oil prices are costing Russia well over $100 billion a year, a top official acknowledged Monday. “We are losing about $40 billion a year because of geopolitical sanctions and about $90 (billion) to $100 billion due to a 30 percent drop in …

US stocks inch further into record territory

Monday, November 24, 2014

NEW YORK — The stock market eked out another record close Monday as investors remained confident that stimulus from central banks would revive global growth. Retail stocks rose ahead of the crucial holiday season. Stocks have surged following …

White House backs off alternative fuels

Monday, November 24, 2014

WASHINGTON — As biotech masterminds and venture capitalists scramble to hatch a new generation of environmentally friendly fuels that can help power the average gasoline-burning car, they are confronting an unexpected obstacle: the White House. Yielding to pressure from oil companies, car manufacturers and even driving enthusiasts, the …

Order up: Jerry’s Place reopens after a month of repairs

Monday, November 24, 2014

SOUTH DEERFIELD — Bacon is sizzling and spatulas are flying for the first time in almost a month at Jerry’s Place. Deerfield Selectman David Wolfram and his wife, Mary, were among some of the first hungry patrons to step through the familiar Elm Street doors into the newly …

State approves 29 percent rate increase sought by Western Massachusetts Electric Co.

Friday, November 21, 2014

BOSTON (AP) — State regulators have approved a 29 percent rate increase sought by Western Massachusetts Electric Co., which serves about 200,000 customers in Western Massachusetts. WMECo has said the rate increase would take effect Jan. 1 and remain in effect for six months. It would raise the …

Senate probes soaring prices of generic drugs

Thursday, November 20, 2014

WASHINGTON — Some low-cost generic drugs that have helped restrain health care costs for decades are seeing unexpected price spikes of up to 8,000 percent, prompting a backlash from patients, pharmacists and now Washington lawmakers. A Senate panel …