New Year’s Eve dance set

December 30, 2010 DESHA — The Desha Veterans of Foreign Wars Post is hosting a New Year’s Eve dance Friday from 8 p.m. until midnight, according to a news release.Everybody is invited. No alcohol and no smoking will be allowed.The dance features music by the Blue Diamond Band with special guest Judy Garcia.Admission is $5.

Calico Rock Museum pays down debt, begins construction

December 30, 2010 CALICO ROCK — The Calico Rock Museum Foundation board of trustees has announced immediate plans to move forward with the museum expansion project. At their regular quarterly meeting in December, the trustees voted to pay $15,000 toward the building purchase loan with First National Bank of Izard County. This payment was made in December and leaves the foundation owing $52,000. The foundation obtained the $80,000 loan in July to purchase the building.

Thida’s Diamond T 4-H Club presents awards

December 30, 2010 THIDA — Diamond T 4-H Club held its sixth annual Club Awards Banquet on Nov. 18 at Thida Community Center.Brianne Reed, vice president, welcomed the guests. Cheyenne Brooks led the prayer, and Cheyenne Reed led the 4-H pledge. Hannah Kimmer and Keylee Harris led the pledge of allegiance.The club history was read by Cecile Harris, president. The club received the following awards this year: 2010 Arkansas State Honor Club, Independence County Champion Club Award, 100 Percent Record Journal Award, Competitive Activity Award and High Point Club Award.

Traffic stop leads to drug charges

December 30, 2010 A 21-year-old Newark man is facing several charges after an Independence County deputy stopped him for speeding and allegedly found him in possession of drugs and drug paraphernalia.Ernie Gillihan pulled over a Jeep Cherokee at 9:28 a.m. Monday for traveling 60 mph in a 45-mph zone.

Authorities crack down on flea market fakes

December 30, 2010 TRENTON, N.J. — Used to be, if you wanted a knockoff handbag or fake fragrance, Lower Manhattan’s Canal Street was a mecca.But with flea markets across the country now carrying the same kind of counterfeit products with poser trademarks, authorities warn that shoppers may get more than they bargain for in poor quality and safety risks while helping fund criminal syndicates in some cases.

Police use school to practice

December 30, 2010 HOT SPRINGS (AP) — Hot Springs police are using a school that’s closed for Christmas vacation to practice their response to a school-shooter scenario.Police conducted the drill at Cutter Morning Star High School on Tuesday. Police Lt. Bill Hrvatin said the school was chosen because he has ties to the school and because it’s important for authorities to train in a realistic location when possible.

Cops: SUV hits real-life ‘Frogger’

December 30, 2010 CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) — A man has been hospitalized after police in South Carolina say he was hit by an SUV while playing a real-life version of the video game “Frogger.”Authorities said the 23-year-old man was taken to a hospital in Anderson after he was struck at around 9 p.m. Monday.In the “Frogger” arcade game, players move frogs through traffic on a busy road and through a hazard-filled river. Before he was hit, police say the man had been discussing the game with his friends.

The Weekend Events

December 30, 2010 Friday• New Year’s Eve dance, 8 p.m.-midnight, Desha Veterans of Foreign Wars Post. No smoking or alcohol. Admission $5. Music by the Blue Diamond Band with special guest Judy Garcia.• New Year’s Eve celebration with singing and preaching, 9 p.m., New Testament Holiness Church, corner of Mark and Davis lanes in Batesville.

Annual box office down from 2009

December 30, 2010 LOS ANGELES (AP) — Domestic box-office revenues for 2010 won’t quite hit last year’s record-setting haul, but they’ll be awfully close.Total movie-ticket sales will reach $10.556 billion, the tracking agency said Tuesday. That’s a slight decrease from the $10.6 billion total from 2009, but it’s also only the second time that the annual box office has crossed the $10 billion mark.

Among 2010 Ark. deaths, 2 on opposite sides in ’57

December 30, 2010 LITTLE ROCK — Arkansas lost during 2010 two major figures from the time when the civil rights struggle was daily headlines fare.Jefferson Thomas, 67, one of nine black students who desegregated Little Rock Central High School in 1957, died Sept. 5 at Columbus, Ohio. Jim Johnson, 85, a self-described die-hard segregationist who twice failed in bids to be elected Arkansas governor, took his own life at his Conway home on Feb. 13.