Roanoke’s GO Fest is an Adventurer’s Paradise

first_imgIf you’re a hiker, biker, paddler, angler, climber, yogi, runner, slacker, craft beer drinker . . . there’s only one place to be October 13-15 – GO Fest.The twice voted “Best Festival” by Blue Ridge Outdoors readers is technically called the Anthem Go Outside Festival, but everyone just calls it GO Fest. Last year the festival attracted 30K adventurers from across the East Coast making it the primo festival for outdoor enthusiasts.This bad ass festival is 100% free, so that’s a huge bonus right out of the gate. Roanoke Outside and the Roanoke Parks and Recreation collaborate on the festival and have stayed true to their goal of keeping the event free so that everyone can live a healthy active lifestyle.For simplicity sake the hundreds of activities found at GO Fest can be broken into three categories: Watch It, Race It, and Try It.Watch It: Any person who wanders into the festival not sure what’s going on can at least catch an awesome show. Pro slackliners, pro BMX stunt shows, dogs jumping 20+ feet into a tank of water, bike trial pros, a lumberjack show, bands, and a heck of a lot of other people doing cool things around the clock.Race It: GO Fest hosts multiple competitive events – the Super Hero 5K, the Wild Gear Chase urban scavenger hunt, a Beer Mile Relay, Cyclocross Exhibitions, and a Strava-based King and Queen of the Mountain Challenge just to name a few.Try It (Our Favorite Part): Demo bikes, shoes, kayaks, sups, fly rods, and more. Sit in on one of over 100 different hands-on classes ranging from wilderness first aid and Leave No Trace to bike maintenance and backpack 101 clinics. Try slacklining, yoga, ride adult big wheels, jump 30’ onto a big air bag, learn to fly cast, hop on the pumptrack, take a shuttle to the top of Mill Mountain for a downhill ride, go for a group trail run, go for a night run, take a hike, chillax in an ENO hammock . . . and that’s just off the top of our head. There truly is something for everyone.Daytime at GO Fest is filled with checking out gear, testing your skills, goofing off, catching up with friends, noshing on grub, and sipping a beverage (or two).But as the sun sets and the moon comes out the day ain’t over. It’s time to head back to your campsite (free camping) and swap your active wear for your dance wear. GO Fest has partnered with the music-minded geniuses behind FloydFest to provide nightly concerts – and a Silent Disco DJ Tent – to boogie the night away.And the best part (other than being 100% free) . . . you get to go to sleep, wake up the next day, and do it again. Learn more at read more

Panamanian Police Destroy Coca Crops near Colombian Border

first_imgBy Dialogo June 20, 2013 Panama’s police destroyed a coca plantation and a cocaine lab in the Colombian border jungle area of Darién, on June 18, Panamá’s Minister of Security José Raúl Mulino said. An anonymous SENAFRONT source told AFP, “4,495 coca plants were destroyed in almost two hectares located in the community of Chucurtí.” It is also estimated that 80% of the cocaine that enters the North American country comes through Central and South America. In the past 13 years, the Panamanian government has confiscated a total of 319 tons of drugs. The highest quantities of drugs were confiscated in 2009 and 2010, with 54 tons each year. “Back from the Colombian border. Great bi-national day against drug trafficking. A hectare of coca crops and a lab destroyed by SENAFRONT (National Border Service),” Mulino posted on his Twitter account. The UN estimates the amount of cocaine sales worldwide at $85 billion, of which $35 billion correspond to the United States. center_img Panamá believes that drug trafficking through their national waters has decreased due to heavier law enforcement presence and as an effect of ‘Operation Martillo,’ a multinational counter drug effort launched in January 2012 by the United States, Central America, and some European countries. According to the Organization of American States (OAS), 45% of cocaine users, 50% of heroine and opiate users and 25% of marihuana users in the world live in the United States. The agents also destroyed a lab “with all the necessary equipment to process coca paste and transform it into cocaine in an operation where no one was arrested,” the source added. In 2012, Panamá’s authorities seized about 35 tons of drugs, while in 2011 they seized 39 tons, according to official records. Tens of thousands of people die in Latin America yearly due to drug-related violence.last_img read more

Western Hemisphere Nations Stand Stronger

first_imgBy Geraldine Cook/Diálogo October 30, 2017 Managing security, defense, and policy matters in the Western Hemisphere is a key element of the U.S. relations with its regional partners. For retired U.S. Army Colonel Sergio de la Peña, a native of Mexico, the commitment is personal. In his role as the U.S. Department of Defense’s deputy assistant secretary of defense for Western Hemisphere Affairs, he is responsible for security, defense, and policy issues in the region, and he oversees the funding of defense cooperation programs for U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM) and U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM), among other responsibilities.De la Peña spoke with Diálogo at the closing ceremony of the South American Regional Seminar on Countering Transregional-Transnational Threat Networks (T3N), organized by the William J. Perry Center of Hemispheric Defense Studies from September 26th to 28th in Lima, Peru. As part of the topics discussed, De la Peña explained the mission of his role, the challenges he faces, and the common regional threats that are making him more passionate about his job.Diálogo: What is the mission of the U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Western Hemisphere Affairs?U.S. Department of Defense Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Western Hemisphere Affairs de la Peña: Our mission is to provide defense policy for the Western Hemisphere, the area that’s encompassed from the North Pole to the South Pole and the western half of the globe.Diálogo: What is the importance or your presence here at the South American seminar on countering T3N?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: The way that we go about doing our work in this hemisphere is by engaging with our partner nations, our allies, and our friends. Without their support, we are much weaker. We need to have the collaboration of every member of the hemisphere. That’s something that is more aspirational at this time because not everybody is a current friend, but the vast majority of the countries in this hemisphere think in line with what we want to achieve, so we want to make sure we strengthen those partnerships, those friendships, and those alliances.Diálogo: How do you accomplish that engagement?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: It begins with contact on a personal level. It’s making sure that as leaders, we engage person to person; that we are able to establish dialogue at the highest levels because the leaders are what set the tone for the relationship. If you can get the leaders to agree, if you can get the leaders to talk to each other and engage in a positive way, then subordinates follow. We’re about creating an environment where we have a much more secure hemisphere.Diálogo: What do you think is your biggest challenge?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: I think the biggest challenge is getting everybody on the same sheet of music, understanding each other. A lot of times there is goodwill. You want to do the right thing, but we have different languages, we have different terminology, we have different systems, and then we have different agencies that don’t always match up one-on-one. In some countries you have laws that allow the police to do certain things; in other countries, those are military functions. So it’s just getting to understand each other and use goodwill to be able to overcome some of those differences in structures and differences in systems.Diálogo: What do you expect to achieve with all the countries you engaged with at this event?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: We’ve talked about a Western Hemisphere that is collaborative, prosperous and secure. The key thing about these types of events is collaboration. If you have collaboration, if you have goodwill, then you have a partner in security. If you have a secure hemisphere, you have a prosperous hemisphere.Diálogo: What is your assessment of the participants at this conference, South American countries, talking about transnational threats?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: I think there’s a lot of goodwill, and we’ve established a good foundation for future collaboration, which is what we want to achieve.Diálogo: What is your biggest concern?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: The biggest concern is maintaining the dialogue, ensuring that we understand each other, and ensuring that we’re constantly working toward solving any of the conflicts that could produce a difference of opinion where we have a lack of collaboration. I think if we can get past those types of challenges, I think we have a stronger and more collaborative hemisphere.Diálogo: There is a lot of concern about regional security issues, such as narcotrafficking, weapons trafficking, human trafficking, and other criminal activities. What is your assessment about the security threats in the region?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: We have a lot of different challenges. We need to take them one at a time. We need to figure out what is the priority for us and what’s the priority for the partner nations. I think that we have a fairly good level of understanding of what threats are common to both sides. What we need to do is figure out a way to coordinate on what is the key thing that concerns both parties. Once we’re able to identify what those are, I think we can come to a point where we can prioritize in a more efficient way, so that everybody is looking at the same problem and at least putting the same value or at least the same priority on that problem.Diálogo: How do you work together with countries in our region to counter T3N?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: The key thing about networks of this nature is making sure that we’re sharing information and intelligence, and that’s not always easy to do. It’s something that we have to work on, by establishing what are the mechanisms that allow us to share information, how do we safeguard that information? And how can we use that information to go against a common threat? It’s about making each other situationally aware of the environment that each of us is living and making sure that we’re able to figure out a way to share information, so that we can go against a common threat.Diálogo: What is the importance of SOUTHCOM and NORTHCOM working together for the security of the Western Hemisphere?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: NORTHCOM and SOUTHCOM do work together but whenever you have a seam, whenever you have a border, you’re going to have challenges. You’re going to have limitations on what you do on one side of that area of operations versus the other. What we need to do is make sure that we maintain the dialogue and be able to close that seam as much as possible because the bad guys don’t have borders; they don’t care about seams and they don’t care about boundaries. We need to make sure that at those boundaries, we have the mechanisms in place where we can track people that are on one side or the other.Diálogo: How does the Office of the Secretary of Defense help countries in need, like Mexico and the Caribbean islands, dealing with natural disasters? Is that a problem that can also affect security?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: Absolutely. Any time you have a natural disaster, especially a severe one, it challenges a state’s ability to respond. If the state does not respond in an efficient manner, then people get angry. When they get angry, that impacts security. What we do, as much as we can, is help. For the recent earthquake, we’ve already sent several large aircrafts, C-17s, into Mexico. Right now we’re confronting the results of the hurricanes that have gone through the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. We have to shift our attention now from some of the earthquake issues to hurricane-related concerns that affect U.S. citizens. That doesn’t mean that we forget about our partner nations. We help them as much as we can with those things that we have expertise in sharing with them, but we also have to take a look at what’s happening in U.S. territories and be sure that we respond accordingly with those people as well because in the case of Puerto Rico, it’s been pretty devastating.Diálogo: Would you like to add anything else for Diálogo readers?Deputy Assistant Secretary De la Peña: We’re a partner, we want to collaborate, and we want to strengthen those ties. We want to re-engage with those that may have had a different point of view for some time and are now returning back to a similar way of thinking as us.last_img read more

How should your website do its job?

first_img continue reading » We’ve defined the job of your credit union website (see this post for a refresher), and that’s a great first step to creating a stellar site. But you won’t get very far if you stop there. Next we need to dig into how your website should successfully do its job. To make it simple, we’ve broken it down into six simple things your website should be doing in order to convince people to choose your credit union.1. Make a good impressionYour website is often a person’s first impression of your credit union. First impressions make a big impact, and people don’t trust credit unions with ugly websites. It’s as simple as that. In fact, Vistaprint conducted a surveyand found that 42% of consumers are very unlikely to buy from a poorly designed website.Here at BloomCU, we focus on helping credit unions wireframe, style tile, and design simple, modern websites. Here are some of our favorite examples: ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Republicans fear Trump’s deluded efforts are eclipsing critical Georgia Senate races. Suckers

first_imgOn top of that, the high-profile recount Trump forced in Georgia may not even be legal, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The rules governing a Georgia election audit call for reviewing only a random sample of ballots rather than every single one. “The audit would have concluded when all ballots were counted and the odds that the full tabulation was incorrect was less than 10%, according to State Election Board rules. But instead of pulling a smaller sample of ballots, Raffensperger plans to audit every ballot,” writes AJC.Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who has been under fire from his GOP colleagues for Trump’s failures in the state, has justified the full hand recount by insisting “the margin is just so close right now.”- Advertisement – Now, as the fate of the Senate rests on two Georgia runoffs, some GOP donors and lawmakers are realizing that loser Trump’s selfishly futile fundraising efforts are siphoning precious resources away from the battles that actually matter in Georgia, according to Politico. Senate Republicans have also made a joint fundraising page to collect money for Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue — but it didn’t attract the widespread social media attention of Trump’s efforts.Sorry, suckers. – Advertisement – – Advertisement –center_img For the record, 14,000 votes may be close, but it’s not recount close. No way. Recounts almost never change election results, particularly when the margin is anywhere over several hundred votes. The Georgia runoff is Jan. 5. Request an absentee ballot by Nov. 18. Early in-person voting starts Dec. 14. And REGISTER TO VOTE here by Dec. 7.last_img read more

High pressure

first_imgWould you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletters To access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week.last_img

Indonesia to issue bonds to rescue businesses affected by COVID-19

first_img“The government will handle the proceeds of the funds to finance all businesses. This is to awaken business activities,” Susiwijono said during a media briefing.Companies looking to receive funds from bond sales were barred from employee layoffs, he said. “If they need to lay off employees, then they must keep at least 90 percent of their employees with the same salary amounts [as before the crisis].”Read also: Battered by virus: Businesses across Indonesia feel the pinchThe government’s plan comes as European Central Bank chief Christine Lagarde asks euro zone finance ministers to seriously consider a one-off joint debt issue of “coronabonds” to help fight the coronavirus pandemic, Reuters reported.The COVID-19-driven slowdown was likely to slash Indonesia’s growth to just above 4 percent this year, the lowest in 15 years, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said as the government prepares for the worst-case scenario of zero growth. From empty malls to factory disruptions, micro and small businesses have suffered the most.The government would reallocate Rp 62.3 trillion (US$3.9 billion) of state spending from the 2020 budget to tackle COVID-19 in Indonesia, on top of the Rp 120 trillion allocated to stimulate the economy.BI has also spent Rp 168.2 trillion so far this year, buying government bonds in the secondary market to stabilize the rupiah as foreign investors dump Rp 125.2 trillion worth of government bonds. The rupiah, now at around Rp 16,277 per US dollar, is the worst-performing currency in Asia.“The central bank will continue to intervene through the spot market, domestic non-deliverable forwards and bonds if needed,” Perry pledged as the rupiah weakened almost 20 percent since January.As of Wednesday, Indonesia had 790 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 58 deaths. Globally, the pneumonia-like illness has infected over 471,000 people and has claimed at least 21,000 lives.President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has revealed that government officials and legislators are in talks to raise Indonesia’s budget deficit cap, which would allow the state to borrow more money to fund emergency response measures to the pandemic. The budget deficit cap could be raised to 5 percent from the current 3 percent ceiling.Topics : Indonesia is planning to offer government debt papers to the market, the proceeds of which would be used to fund programs that rescue businesses suffering from COVID-19 and prevent layoffs.Secretary to the coordinating economic affairs minister, Susiwijono Moegiarso, said Thursday the government would issue a government regulation in lieu of law (Perppu) on Friday to facilitate the plan.The so-called “recovery bond” can be bought by Bank Indonesia (BI), as well as exporters and importers, Susiwijoyo said, adding the Perppu would enable the central bank to buy government bonds not only in the secondary market. The existing law on BI prohibits the central bank from buying government bonds except in the secondary market.last_img read more

511PA Website Feature to Assist Travelers to Little League World Series

first_img Press Release,  PSA,  Transportation Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has launched a web page,, to provide real-time travel and alternate-route information to assist motorists traveling to the Little League World Series in Williamsport.The new page, hosted through the department’s traveler information website, is dedicated to monitoring traffic conditions on the primary travel routes to the event. Travel times and alerts are provided for: Route 15 south to Route 220 to Market Street; Route 15 north; Interstate 80 east to Route 220 north to Market Street; and I-80 west to Route 15 north.“We’re always looking for opportunities to put our traffic information tools into action for the public,” PennDOT Secretary Leslie S. Richards said. “Providing this real-time information empowers travelers to attend this exciting event using the route that best works for them.”The page includes the average travel time for the primary route as well as one or two alternate routes. Users can see incidents, construction, weather forecasts and alerts, traffic cameras, and traffic speeds on the map. Maps showing traffic trends on each day of the event in the previous three years are also available.In addition to Little League World Series information, motorists can use to check conditions on nearly 40,000 roadway miles in Pennsylvania. 511PA, which is free and available 24 hours a day, provides traffic delay warnings, weather forecasts, traffic speed information and access to more than 825 traffic cameras.511PA is also available through a smartphone application for iPhone and Android devices, by calling 5-1-1, or by following regional Twitter alerts accessible on the 511PA website. 511PA Website Feature to Assist Travelers to Little League World Series August 14, 2017center_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitterlast_img read more

Swiss pension fund seeking ideas for low-volatility equity strategy

first_imgA Swiss pension fund is seeking ideas for a factor-driven global developed market equities strategy and has set out its thinking on IPE Quest’s pre-request for proposal platform.According to IPE Quest Discovery search DS-2523, the pension fund is contemplating allocating between CHF200-400m (€179-358m).The strategy should remove downside risk from the global equity allocation.“The desired strategy will show an asymmetric return pattern versus the market average with high relative returns in bear markets, market equivalent or similar in moderately positive returning markets and low relative returns in strongly positive returning markets,” said the pension fund. It is open to a pooled mandate or segregated account. All stated returns should be gross of fees.Interested parties should have a track record of at least five years and submit ideas by 15 April, at 5pm UK time.Brunel Pension Partnership, one of the eight asset pools created by UK local government pension schemes, recently awarded a £400m (€467m) low-volatility global equity mandate.The IPE news team is unable to answer any further questions about IPE Quest, Discovery, or Innovation tender notices to protect the interests of clients conducting the search. To obtain information directly from IPE Quest, please contact Jayna Vishram on +44 (0) 20 3465 9330 or email read more

Vattenfall Issues Call for Horns Rev 3 Crew Transfer Vessels

first_imgVattenfall is seeking crew transfer vessels (CTVs) to assist during the construction and operations and maintenance (O&M) phase on the 406MW Horns Rev 3 offshore wind farm project in the Danish North Sea.The vessels are to provide transport services to technicians and smaller cargo between the harbour of Esbjerg, optionally port of Hvide Sande, and the offshore wind farm.For the construction phase, Vattenfall will enter into contract with one party providing two CTVs, starting 1 March and 1 June 2018, respectively, and ending 31 January 2019. The charters of each of the vessels can be extended by up to around six months.For the O&M phase, Vattenfall is seeking a single provider of CTVs for a period of three years. The contracts are expected to start on 1 August 2018 and end on 31 July 2021. Each charter can be extended for a period of up to three years.Horns Rev 3 offshore wind farm is to be located off the Danish west coast, on the Horns Rev (Horns Reef) in a shallow area in the North Sea, approximately 25 kilometres northwest of the westernmost point of Denmark, Blåvands Huk.The sailing distance from the Esbjerg harbour to the site is approximately 35 nautical miles.The tender will remain open until 23 September 2017.Horns Rev 3 will comprise 49 MHI Vestas 8MW turbines, optimised at 8.3MW.last_img read more