The skinny

The skinny: Probably too late to rename the festival

We have no asparagus

Probably too late to rename the festival

Imagine that: The missing ingredient at this weekend's Empire Asparagus Festival is local asparagus. The long, cold winter and cool spring have delayed this year's crop in Michigan's northern Lower Peninsula, leaving festival organizers scrambling for a replacement source. The Traverse City Record-Eagle says that the festival's usual supplier is Harry Norconk but that Norconk Farm doesn't have an asparagus crop yet. Norconk says he has sold as much as 500 pounds of asparagus at earlier festivals. Still, there will be asparagus. Restaurant owners are getting asparagus supplies from southern Michigan to meet the demand. Event organizer Paul Skinner of the Empire Chamber of Commerce says the festival will highlight other locally grown foods to fill the gap.

Green is gone

Grass disappears along with weeds

A university in Ohio is being forced to replace almost all its grass after weed killer was accidentally applied to lawns instead of fertilizer. University of Findlay spokeswoman Brianna Patterson says the chemical was applied in late April and it will take several weeks to reseed and resod the affected areas. She told the Findlay Courier that the mistake was unfortunate because of how hard the college works to keep the campus looking nice. Grass was killed on as many as 54 of the campus' 72 acres. Ouch.

X-ray sees all

That old bag of animals trick

Score one for the airport checkers. When the bag of a Mexican man was X-rayed in Frankfurt, Germany, authorities say they found 55 turtles, 30 arboreal alligator lizards, four horned vipers and a five-keeled spiny-tailed iguana, including endangered species. The 44-year-old man was detained on suspicion of animal trafficking. Customs spokesman Hans-Juergen Schmidt said the man, whose name wasn't released, was traveling from Mexico City to Barcelona, Spain. Schmidt said one of the animals, believed to be worth about $82,000 in total, had already died. The rest were seized.

Things just get worse

For gunshot, rub on some ointment

What was he thinking? Or was he? A 43-year-old Anchor Point, Alaska, man is expected to make a full recovery after initially treating a gunshot wound to the head for five days with an antibiotic ointment. Alaska state troopers say the gun went off as James Doppler was handling it last weekend. Troopers say his girlfriend urged him to go to the hospital but he refused, believing at the time he didn't need outside help to tend the wound. Well, things worsened and on Thursday he went to the hospital for treatment.

Compiled from wire services

The skinny: Probably too late to rename the festival 05/16/14 [Last modified: Friday, May 16, 2014 10:24pm]

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