Parades, relay races, picnics mark soggy U.S. July Fourth
By Katie Reilly NEW YORK (Reuters) - Millions of Americans on Saturday gathered for Independence Day parades, picnics and hotdog eating competitions, defying worries over possible security threats and the danger of wildfires in the West. Rainy weather on the East Coast didn't dampen the spirits of celebrants decked out in red, white and blue from their headbands to their shoelaces for traditional July Fourth events from three-legged races to fireworks shows. "It's important to show American spirit on America's birthday," said Meskie Hyman, 11, who wore a star-spangled shirt and a hairband with two American flags fluttering after she ran a holiday 50-yard dash under cloudy skies in Maplewood, New Jersey.
Oregon marijuana fans look to cash in on new law
More than a thousand marijuana enthusiasts and entrepreneurs met in Oregon on Friday to swap samples, contacts and business tips in hopes of profiting from the state's new law allowing the recreational use of pot. Licensed growers handed out free tastes, gardening experts displayed organic plant food and artists sold marijuana pipes to participants at the "Weed the People" event. “Cannabis is a great opportunity for us," said D.J. King, a labor organizer with the United Food and Commercial Workers who wants to unionize workers at marijuana grow operations, distributors and retailers.
New York governor orders more July Fourth security after alert
"We are keenly aware that New York State remains a top target for terrorists," Cuomo said in a statement. The Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation have issued an alert calling for local authorities and the public to remain vigilant for possible threats following recent calls for violence by Islamic State militants. In New York City, the nation's largest municipal police force assigned about 7,000 officers and nearly all its counterterrorism personnel to handle security around Independence Day events.
Ohio community seeks clues, fights fear after 6 women vanish
CHILLICOTHE, Ohio (AP) — The fate of six women — four of them dead, two missing for months — have people on edge in this small southern Ohio city as relatives seek clues, seemingly in vain, to whatever happened to their loved ones.