KARACHI: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) confirmed that tickets for Pakistan Super League (PSL) season 6 will go on sale from tomorrow (Wednesday) at 10 am.
According to the details, tickets for 30 out of 34 matches will be sold out in the first phase from tomorrow. Ticket denominations for the Qualifier, two Eliminators, and the final, to be played from 18-22 March, will be announced closer to time. Remember, only 20 percent crowd will be able to watch each PSL 6 match at both venues.
Tickets will be available online, as well as on Bookme helpline (03137786888) by showing CNIC and phone number.
On confirmation of the tickets on the helpline, the customer will be sent a token number on the registered ‘phone so that the customer can make the payment at the closest Jazzcash/Easypaisa shop. Upon payment, the customer will receive an e-ticket code along with a Quick Response (QR) Code, which the customer can use to print the ticket or show the SMS at the entry gate on match day.
At the National Stadium, enclosures reserved for the families are: Hanif Mohammad (VIP Enclosure), Wasim Akram (Premium Enclosure), Zaheer Abbas, Iqbal Qasim and Nasimul Ghani Enclosures (First-Class Enclosures), and Intikhab Alam Enclosure (General) while family enclosures at the Gaddafi Stadium include: Fazal Mahmood (VIP Enclosure), Saeed Anwar (Premier Enclosure), Abdul Qadir (First-Class Enclosure) and Nazar, Quaid, Zaheer Abbas and Majid Khan (General Enclosure).
For Saturday’s tournament opener between Karachi Kings and Quetta Gladiators, which will begin at 7pm, cost of VIP stands (Hanif Mohammad and Javed Miandad Enclosures) have been fixed at PKR5000, while price of the First-Class stands (Zaheer Abbas, Asif Iqbal, Waqar Hasan, Majid Khan, Iqbal Qasim and Nasimul Ghani Enclosures) have been kept at PKR4,000.
Similarly, price of Premium stands (Quaid, Wasim Akram and Imran Khan Enclosure) have been set at PKR3,000, while the General stand tickets (Wasim Bari, Mohammad Brothers and Intikhab Alam Enclosure) have been fixed at PKR2,000.
For Sunday’s double-header between Lahore Qalandars and Peshawar Zalmi, and Islamabad United and Multan Sultans, which will start at 2pm and 7pm, respectively, cost of VIP stands (Hanif Mohammad and Javed Miandad Enclosures) have been fixed at PKR4,000, while price of the First-Class stands (Zaheer Abbas, Asif Iqbal, Waqar Hasan, Majid Khan, Iqbal Qasim and Nasimul Ghani Enclosures) have been kept at PKR3,000.
Similarly, price of Premium stands (Quaid, Wasim Akram and Imran Khan Enclosure) have been set at PKR2,000, while the General stand tickets (Wasim Bari, Mohammad Brothers and Intikhab Alam Enclosure) have been fixed at PKR1,000.
For matches to take place from Monday-Wednesday, cost of VIP stands (Hanif Mohammad and Javed Miandad Enclosures) have been fixed at PKR3,000, while price of the First-Class stands (Zaheer Abbas, Asif Iqbal, Waqar Hasan, Majid Khan, Iqbal Qasim and Nasimul Ghani Enclosures) have been kept at PKR2,000. Similarly, price of Premium stands (Quaid, Wasim Akram and Imran Khan Enclosure) have been set at PKR1,000, while the General stand tickets (Wasim Bari, Mohammad Brothers and Intikhab Alam Enclosure) have been fixed at PKR500.
For the first match in Lahore on 10 March involving Peshawar Zalmi and Karachi Kings, ticket prizes for the VIP stands (Imran Khan and Fazal Mahmood Enclosures) have been set for 3,000, followed by PKR2,000 for the First-Class Stands (Abdul Qadir and Sarfraz Nawaz Enclosures), PKR1,000 for Premium stands (A.H. Kardar, Rajas, Javed Miandad and Saeed Anwar Enclosures) and PKR500 for General stands (Inzamam ul Haq, Nazars, Quaid, Imtiaz Ahmed, Zaheer Abbas, Hanif Mohammad, Majid Khan, Saeed Ahmed Enclosures).
Meanwhile, PCB will make sure to implement strict COVID-19 protocols during the matches at venues.
• Hand Hygiene through handwashing with soap and water for 20 seconds• Use of hand gel with high percentages of alcohol (70%) or other appropriate product is an alternative• Sneezing and coughing into tissues or the crook of one’s elbow – disposal and cleaning hands afterwards• Avoid touching one’s face and nose• Spitting is banned within the stadium• Medical masks must be worn by everyone while in the stadium. Enough medical masks has been secured for the crowd to ensure risk free environment for everyone in the stadiumCode of Conduct• Wear a face covering before entering through the turnstiles, and continue to wear your face covering while seated in the stands. No mask, No entry• Ensure you are aware of the gate of entrance in advance by asking members of the management team/security staff positioned at the main gates of the stadium• Spectators must not attend if they experience any Covid-19 symptoms, are feeling unwell, or if they have been in close contact recently with anyone experiencing symptoms or who has tested positive• If you develop symptoms while at the stadium, please notify the nearest member of management staff immediately. Rights of admission will be reserved by PCB• At all times and in all parts of the ground, please observe social distancing and avoid close contact with others who are not in your support bubble• You must remain in your seat at all times unless you have to use rest rooms or exit the stadium. In such cases, seek guidance from the ushers and Security Guards available in each stand• When passing in the rows, please turn your backs if you must brush past other spectators, thereby avoiding face-to-face contact• Maintain good hand hygiene – use the sanitizers provided and use toilet facilities where possible to wash your hands• Please observe respiratory etiquette – always cover your mouth if needing to cough or sneeze
• A steward/care taker will be assigned at all times to monitor the flow of spectators and ensure that no more than three people use that facility at a given time• Hand washing facilities will be cleaned and sanitised at regular intervals• Provision of hand sanitizers will be carefully managed by designated staff.Distance between seating• Two seats will be left between two individuals or each group• Group must only contain one household to ensure social distancing is in place• A row between the successive rows shall be left vacant to ensure social distancing
• To be sold (CNIC Holders) to the families only for family exclusive stands and for General stands with individual seating• Applicants must supply their contact details at Point of Sale to help with track and tracing.• To be sold in advance only through online sale with helpline support through telephone. Tickets to be printed at home with QR codes or delivered through cash on delivery mechanism.• Ushers and Security Guards to ensure compliance in seating
KARACHI: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) confirmed that tickets for Pakistan Super League (PSL) season 6 will go on sale from tomorrow (Wednesday) at 10 am.
FILE PHOTO: Tokyo 2020 Olympics organizing committee president Yoshiro Mori announces his resignation as he takes responsibility for his sexist comments at a meeting with council and executive board members at the committee headquarters, in Tokyo, Japan February 12, 2021. Yoshikazu Tsuno/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo
The panel charged with finding a new Tokyo Olympics chief after a sexism row began talks on Tuesday as campaigners called for more transparency in the selection process.
The eight-person committee convened for the first time to discuss choosing a successor to Yoshiro Mori, 83, who stepped down Friday after his claims that women talk too much in meetings sparked widespread outrage.
The panel “discussed the qualities required of a new president,” according to Tokyo 2020 organizers, and agreed on five selection criteria.
But campaigners said the process should be made more transparent, with Games chiefs declining to identify the members of the panel, which was expected to have a 50-50 gender split.
The postponed 2020 Games are set to begin in July, with officials and organizers insisting they will go ahead despite doubts over the event’s viability given the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
The formation of the new panel, headed by 85-year-old Canon CEO Fujio Mitarai, was announced Friday after Mori’s reported attempts to hand-pick 84-year-old Saburo Kawabuchi as his successor was met with opposition.
“Now they say they won’t reveal who the members are of the committee to choose the next chief,” Kazuko Fukuda, a campaigner for women’s sexual and reproductive rights, told AFP.
“So it’s really like the whole process will take place in secret again.”
Equality campaigners handed a petition with more than 150,000 signatures to Tokyo 2020 organizers on Tuesday morning, urging them to put concrete measures in place to prevent further discrimination.
The selection committee laid out five criteria for choosing a new president — sporting knowledge, international experience, management skills, familiarity with the Tokyo Games organization and “deep understanding” of Olympic principles, including “gender equality, diversity and inclusion.”
The committee pledged to select candidates “as swiftly as possible”, with local media suggesting a new president could be named before the end of the week.
Reports said Olympic Minister Seiko Hashimoto, Japanese Olympic Committee president Yasuhiro Yamashita and former hammer-thrower Koji Murofushi are among those in contention.
Hashimoto — one of just two women in Japan’s cabinet — was reported as saying Tuesday that she had not been approached about taking over.
“It should be done with transparency,” she said. “I hope we can get the new structure in place quickly.”
Reports said the selection panel is expected to meet again on Wednesday to draw up a list of nominees.
The final choice must be endorsed by Tokyo 2020’s executive board.
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February 16, 2021
Tetris® combines with Spin & Go tournaments at PokerStars in a fun promotion that sees $1.5 million paid out between February 15 and March 28.
Head to the Spin & Go lobby in the PokerStars client and you’ll see there are Tetris® Spin & Go games with buy-ins of $0.25, $1, $2, $5, $10, $25, $50, $100, $250, and $500. They all play out the exact same way as a traditional Spin & Go, meaning they’re three-handed hyper-turbo tournaments where the prize pool is randomly determined before the first hand is dealt.
It’s still possible to win up to $1 million in some of these game, but there are a few notable differences.
First, the virtual felt is made up of Tetris® blocks, which actually looks pretty cool. Also, the dealer button is now a Tetris® block too, and other blocks fall down the screen.
The Tetris® part of the promotion comes in the form of leaderboards. There’s a separate leaderboard for each Tetris® Spin & Go buy-in level, so 10 in total. You need to opt-in and then fire up some Tetris® Spin & Go tournaments.
Play your tournaments as you would ordinarily, but do so knowing the aim of the game is to clear lines, just like in Tetris®. The number of lines you clear depends on your Spin & Go multiplier and your finishing position in the tournament.
Your level increases each time you clear five lines. This results in you earning even more points so you can climb up your leaderboard faster.
The 2021 Guide to PokerStars Spin and Go Poker
How Many Lines Do I Clear?
As you can see from the table above, finishing in 1st place in a Tetris® Spin & Go that has a 2x multiplier clears four lines. Just playing a tournament earns you points.
How Do You Earn Points?
The number of leaderboard points you earn is based on your finishing position and your current level. You start off earning 40 points for clearing one line when you’re at Level 0, but this increases to 840 points if you manage to climb to Level 20, which is the highest level you can achieve.
It is possible to earn up to 25,200 points per Tetris® Spin & Go tournament, as you can see in this table.
LevelPoints for 1 LinePoints for 2 LinesPoints for 3 LinesPoints four 4 Lines
Tetris® Spin & Go Payout Table
The leaderboards payout $33,000 every day throughout the promotion making for a combined total of $1,500,000 just for playing Tetris® Spin & Go tournaments.
The $0.25, $1, $2, and $5 leaderboard payout the top 100 points earners, so you have a decent chance of walking away with a cash prize. The prizes don’t have any restrictions on them meaning you’re free to do with them as you wish.
Spin & Go Your Way to a PokerStars Sunday Million Seat
The Tetris® Playing Field – Avoid Hitting Game Over
There’s an extra element to this promotion that you have to be aware of at all times. PokerStars calls it the Playing Field.
Just like in a game of Tetris® where it is Game Over when the blocks reach the top of the screen, it can be game over for you if you go on a streak of out of the money finishes!
Finishing in first place either improves your Playing Field status or makes zero change to it. Finish in second place, however, and your Playing Field status either stays the same or actually worsens, which is also the case when you finish in third place.
Your table, or playing field, is green in color when your Playing Field is in a good state. It turns amber when it is worsening and turns red when you’re in big trouble. Failing to win when your playing field is red could see you reach Game Over which means you cannot earn any more leaderboard points until the next day!
The changes to your playing field status depend on your current level.
1st place 2nd place 3rd place
LevelImproveNo ChangeNo ChanceWorsenNo ChangeWorsen
Get Involved in the Tetris® Spin & Go Promotion
With $33,000 waiting to be won every day until March 28 there’s no time to waste if you want to win some free cash.
Download PokerStars via PokerNews, enter the bonus code “STARS600” when making your first deposit and PokerStars will match your deposit 100% up to $600. In fact, your first three deposits in a 90-day window are matched 100% up to a combined maximum of $600.
All you need to do then is opt-in and fire up some Tetris® Spin & Go tournaments and see if you can pad your bankroll with some of the $1.5 million that’s guaranteed to be won. That and try not to spend the rest of the day humming the famous Tetris® tune!
The Stars Group is a majority shareholder in Oddschecker Global Media, the parent company of PokerNews.
Chelsea have been drawn against Atletico Madrid in the Women’s Champions League last 16 while Manchester City face Fiorentina.WSL leaders Chelsea will come up against a familiar face in Toni Duggan with the England international helping Atletico knock Manchester City out of the tournament at the same stage last season.
Emma Hayes’ side have been in stunning form over the past year, going on a record-breaking 33-game unbeaten run which was only recently ended by a shock home defeat to Brighton.Meanwhile, Gareth Taylor’s City side will also play their first leg at home, against a Fiorentina side that finished second in Serie A last season but is off the pace this term, lying fourth and 16 points off pacesetters Juventus.Holders Lyon, who have won a record seven titles and made it five in a row last season, face Norwegian side Brondby.
First legs are scheduled to be played between March 3 and 4, with the return fixtures expected to take place between March 10 and 11.
Manchester City were knocked out of the competition at the Round of 16 stage by Atletico Madrid and Toni Duggan last season
Full draw as follows:
Wolsburg (GER) vs LSK Kvinner (NOR)Barcelona (ESP) vs Fortuna Hjørring (DEN)Rosengård (SWE) vs St. Pölten (AUT)BIIK-Kazygurt (KAZ) vs Bayern München (GER)Manchester City (ENG) vs Fiorentina (ITA)Sparta Praha (CZE) vs Paris Saint-Germain (FRA)Lyon (FRA) vs Brøndby (DEN)Chelsea (ENG) vs Atlético de Madrid (ESP)More to follow….Watch the Women’s Football Show on Friday at 6pm on Sky Sports Football.
The Boston College Eagles men’s basketball team has endured a pandemic-altered season to forget, one that includes the squad dropping 13 of 16 games.
On Monday, the university confirmed that head coach Jim Christian has been relieved of his duties.
Assistant Scott Spinelli will serve as interim head coach for the remainder of the campaign.
“I know that Jim gave everything that he had into leading our program and mentoring our student-athletes,” athletic director Pat Kraft said in the prepared statement. “Ultimately, the program is not headed in the right direction and though I hesitate to make a mid-season coaching change in any sport, now is the right time for us to look forward. We wish Jim and his family all the best in their future endeavors and thank them for their service to Boston College.”
According to Jeff Borzello of ESPN, Boston College failed to finish above .500 in conference play in any of Christian’s seven seasons as head coach. The Eagles went 78-132 overall and 26-94 in the conference under Christian.
In a separate piece, Borzello offered a lengthy list of realistic candidates and also wishful potential hires for the opening. Michigan Wolverines assistant Howard Eisley “checks a lot of boxes,” per Borzello.
Verified players can continue to play a real-money game, such as Flip & Go and Spin & Gold, for free each and every day.One of the most popular promotions for low stakes players on GGPoker has been further expanded.
During the software update on February 10, the Daily Free Spin promotion changed to Daily Freebie. Furthermore, UK players can now also claim the daily gift for a chance to boost their bankrolls.
All players, both existing and new, just need to have verified accounts and log in each day to claim their gift, which lets plays play real money tournaments—and compete for real money cash prizes.
The update has expanded what is given away. Now, there are Daily Freebie tickets for Flip & Go, the super-successful new format introduced in January 2021. It has also undergone some changes since its launch, with GGPoker increasing the frequency and adjusting the buy-ins as well as the maximum number of stacks for purchase.
“GGPoker is happy to confirm that we’ve relaunched our Daily Free Spin offer as the Daily Freebie; verified players can continue to play a real-money game, such as Flip & Go and Spin & Gold, for free each and every day. All they need to do is log in and claim their daily reward!” said Paul Burke, Head of Public Relations at GGPoker.
“We hope to continue to change up the rewards on offer in the future, giving all players the opportunity to try out GGPoker’s most exciting games, no matter their bankroll.”
For existing players, Daily Freebie is available immediately—just log in and claim.
If you haven’t yet signed up, you can do so today and enjoy the promotion as soon as you have verified your account. You can also take advantage of all of GGPoker’s generous welcome bonuses.
How the GGPoker Daily Freebie Promotion Works
The operator has seen unprecedented growth in 2020 to become one of the leading online poker platforms for tournaments and cash games. GGPoker has achieved that with a plethora of promotions, innovations, and high-profile partnerships. Their continued success has led to a record $7.5 million in promotions given away in February 2021.
One of several promotions for players with smaller bankrolls is the Daily Freebie formerly the Daily Free Spin.
This was launched on September 7, 2020. It has given verified players the opportunity to claim one $0.25 Spin & Gold ticket every day ever since. The free ticket courtesy of GGPoker continues to be available under the new name three times per week—*but this rotates with other ticket types.*
Players can see the next six upcoming Daily Freebies listed under the “My Promo” tab. A new daily gift becomes available after each daily reset at midnight Pacific time. Each ticket will continue to feature an expiration date of 24 hours once the Daily Freebie has been awarded.
The current rotation of Daily Freebie is fixed for the time being. However, GGPoker hopes “to change the daily prizes on a semi-regular basis,” according to Burke. He also hinted at a strong possibility that the Daily Freebie will include the alternative currencies C$ or T$ sometime soon.
Newly included as a prize in the Daily Freebie is a $1 Spin & Gold ticket, which can be claimed once per week. Furthermore, five $0.05 Flip & Go tickets are up for grabs three times per week, giving players the chance at trying the new tournament format free of charge.
As a mixture between a Flipout and regular tournament, Flip & Go was launched on January 12, 2021. However, it only took a few days for the first tweaks to be made. Initially slated to take place once every hour, it was soon increased to once every 30 minutes.
The buy-ins were also adjusted and the lowest available stake was increased to $0.05 with a guarantee of $50. Players can now take a shot at their own leisure three times per week and enter this lowest tier with five stacks thanks to the Daily Freebie.
Upon launch, the Flip & Go featured a maximum of 10 entries for each of the four stakes. However, that number has been adjusted recently and the stacks for purchase are now capped at a maximum of eight. This makes the bonus stacks based on the holdings during the Flipout stage more valuable in comparison.
The overall feedback for the new tournament format has been very positive, as outlined by Burke.
“Players love it! We have been very pleasantly surprised by the positivity seen across almost all feedback, of course not all players are interested in a new game type but those who have tried it have mostly good things to say about Flip & Go. We’ve also received some constructive criticism, which is also valuable.”
Further tweaks to the Flip & Go format may very well possible, as GGPoker is constantly reviewing and optimizing its schedule. One such adjustment was made with the expansion of the popular Daily GGMasters earlier in February.
The changes to the Daily Freebie promotion went live on February 10. All verified GGPoker players in eligible countries can claim their daily gift under the “My Promo” tab after each daily reset.
There could be an interesting battle in the Europa League on Thursday evening, as Manchester United and Real Sociedad meet in Turin in the first leg of their round of 32 clash.
Europa League Preview
Manchester United would have been disappointed to drop into the Europa League after strong showings in their first two Champions League group stage fixtures. However, defeat against RB Leipzig in the final group stage match left the Red Devils in third place in their group. Their route for European glory hasn’t been made any easier after being drawn against La Liga side Real Sociedad. However, United will be optimistic regarding their chances, as there have been strong showings by the side over the past 12 months. Their away record is certainly outstanding, as they haven’t lost a domestic game on the road for over 12 months. United will be looking to finally break the mental block that they have endured over recent seasons when it comes to semi-finals, as they have lost their last four across the Europa League, FA Cup and EFL Cup.
Sociedad will not be an easy game for the Red Devils, as the Spanish side have once again been able to find their best form. For a long time, Sociedad looked certainties to finish in a Champions League spot this season, and when the draw was made for this stage of the Europa League, they were sitting in the top two. After a patchy run of form, Sociedad have been able to rediscover their best form over recent games, as they have picked up two wins on the bounce. That is the kind of form that they will need to come into this game with to stand the best chance of progression.
Real Sociedad vs Manchester United Head To Head
This will only be the third time that Manchester United and Real Sociedad have locked horns. They last met in the 2013-14 Champions League campaign, with United winning once and drawing the game that was played in Spain. United’s 1-0 win at Old Trafford came courtesy of an own goal from Martinez Berridi.
Real Sociedad vs Manchester United Prediction
Avoiding defeat in the first leg of a European tie is always the pivotal factor when it comes to knockout football. United will be happy to come away from Spain with a draw, and that also wouldn’t be the worst result for Sociedad.
Make sure to bet on Real Sociedad vs Manchester with 22Bet!
Lionel Messi scored two goals of the highest quality in La Liga this weekend to take his tally to 15 for the season.Both of the Argentine’s goals were scored from outside the box in superb fashion, as he helped Barcelona on their way to a 5-1 win against Alaves.Messi may now make our leaderboard, but he is still some way off reaching the runaway leader, Robert Lewandowski.The Bayern striker scored again on Monday in the German side’s rearranged Bundesliga match versus Arminia Bielefeld which was moved due to their Club World Cup exploits over the weekend.Lewandowski now has 25 goals and 50 points.His nearest rival for the Golden Shoe is fellow Bundesliga striker Andre Silva, who has now scored 18 for the season.Liverpool may have lost against Leicester, but Mohamed Salah still scored a lovely goal to take his tally to 17.Georgios Giakoumakis of Venlo has scored an impressive 22 goals and is the highest player on our list who doesn’t feature within one of Europe’s top five leagues.A talented group on 16 goals for the campaign includes Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe, Romelu Lukaku, and Luis Suarez.2020/21 EUROPEAN GOLDEN SHOE STANDINGS 2020/21 European Golden ShoeA reminder: The five elite leagues – Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A and Ligue 1 – all carry a weighting of 2, meaning that a player will be awarded two points for every goal they score in these competitions. For the leagues ranked sixth to 30 in Uefa’s coefficients rankings goals scored are given a weighting of 1.5, and goals scored in a league outwith the top 30, goals are given a weighting of 1. Ciro Immobile won the 2019/20 European Golden Shoe, scoring 36 goals for Lazio in a tremendous Serie A season. 2020/21 EUROPEAN GOLDEN SHOE (Summer Leagues) 2020 European Golden ShoePlayerTeamGoalsPointsKasper JunkerBomo/Glimt2740.5Amahl PellegrinoKristiansund2537.5Philip ZinckernagelBodo/Glimt1928.5Christoffer NymanNorrköping1827Rauno SappinenFlora Tallinn2626Veton BerishaViking1624Astrit SelmaniVerbergs1522.5Mushaga BakengaOdds BK1522.5Moses OgbuMjallby1421Anders ChristiansenMalmo1319.5Leke JamesMolde1219.5Maksim SkavyshBATE Borisov1919This is the 2020/21 European Golden Shoe race. If you want to see the final standing for the 2019/20 European Golden Shoe, follow this link.
As Americans continue to weather the pandemic, the $2.3 trillion coronavirus relief and spending bill passed by the federal government in December brought an unexpected and lasting gift: a new national park.The 5,593-page spending package included a raft of provisions authorizing little-known projects — the construction of the Teddy Roosevelt Presidential Library in North Dakota, for one — and giving lawmakers a chance to advance a variety of long-delayed initiatives. Among them was the elevation of the New River Gorge, in southern West Virginia, to the status of Yellowstone, Yosemite and the country’s other most renowned outdoor spaces. The designation of the area — roughly 72,000 acres of land flanking 53 miles of the gorge — as a national park and preserve creates the 63rd national park in the United States and completes a multigenerational effort, started in the mid-twentieth century, to transform a tired industrial area into a national landmark.“Towards the end of this year, with these big bills coming down, I decided to strike,” said Shelley Moore Capito, a Republican and the state’s junior senator, who, along with Senator Joe Manchin III, a Democrat, introduced the New River Gorge legislation in 2019.“This was the right opportunity,” she said.A draw for rafters, kayakers and other outdoor enthusiastsThe gorge and its surroundings have been prized for decades as one of southern West Virginia’s more spectacular natural places.In 1963, the West Virginia House of Delegates passed a resolution seeking to designate the New River Gorge as a “national playground,” preparing to send the proposal to President John F. Kennedy, whose primary campaign was lifted substantially through support from West Virginia voters. But momentum to create a national recreation area stalled after Mr. Kennedy’s assassination later that year.Though the gorge remained a curiosity among rafters and outdoor enthusiasts, the area only received federal protection from the Interior Department in 1978, when it was designated a national river.Now, the outdoor offerings in the gorge have come to define the area as a premier destination for adventure sports in the East.The New River plunges 750 feet over 66 miles, resulting in long stretches of violent rapids that can reach a class five level, generally considered the most difficult that can be navigated by white-water boaters. (Licensed outfitters operate in several towns near the river, providing rentals and tours for rafting and kayaking.)The canyon walls, which soar as high as 1,600 feet, offer miles of cliffs that rank among the best in the East Coast for rock climbing. Sheer faces in the gorge made of robust Nuttall sandstone provide both traditional and sport-climbing routes across the difficulty spectrum.Bike routes are scattered throughout the park on both sides of the river, with options for both technical mountain biking and more casual pedaling along former railroad beds.A glimpse back in timeAccording to the National Park Service, geologists believe the New River — its name a misnomer used by early American explorers who often assigned the same name to any river they came upon for the first time — was a segment of the preglacial Teays River. This larger river, which traversed much of the current Ohio River watershed, was later diverted and broken up by glaciers. The age of the Teays is uncertain, but fossil evidence suggests it could be as much as 320 million years old, leaving its remnant, the New River, as quite possibly the second oldest river in the world.Beyond the millions of years of geological history on display, the gorge is also filled with signs of the region’s heritage as a major coal production hub.Miners once capitalized on the easy access to rich deposits of high-quality bituminous coal in the canyon, where the river had already shorn through hundreds of feet of rock. Especially after the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway linked the New River coal fields to markets in 1873, dozens of boom towns popped up along the river’s edge, thriving well into the 1920s.In 1963, a coal mine was still operating in the gorge, said Dave Arnold, a state tourism commissioner who operated a rafting company for more than 40 years.“In ’76 or ’77, if you were in my boat, we’d have been floating down the river and I would have been showing you, ‘here’s an old coal tipple, here’s the old hotel at Caperton, here’s this and that,’” he said.The demand for coal around the turn of the twentieth century was so high that towns existed every half mile along up the river, according to the Park Service. As the industry went into decline, however, by the 1950s many were already abandoned, leaving ghost towns scattered throughout the gorge. Additionally, logging during the late nineteenth century stripped vast portions of the gorge bare, clearing enormous swaths of virgin forest.The park contains the remnants of communities such as Nuttallburg and Kaymoor, which still stand near the riverbank and are accessible from points higher up. Seams of exposed coal are visible along some trails leading into the gorge and its towns, where abandoned mine portals and the foundations of coke ovens remain.Restoring an ecosystem with diverse wildlifeDespite the environmental degradation and pollution that industry unleashed, some unique ecological features make the gorge well-suited to a diverse combination of wildlife, which has slowly reappeared as time has passed.The river lies at the center of a migration corridor where plants and animals that typically range further north or south come together, including several federally endangered and threatened species, such as the Virginia big-eared bat and the Allegheny woodrat.According to Lizzie Watts, the park’s superintendent, the river itself is also notably warmer than surrounding areas, making it a popular warm-water fishing destination with more than a dozen public access points. The river is one of the premier spots for smallmouth bass fishing on the east coast, and muskellunge and walleye are common in the park today.“The next generation will have the opportunity to see what, in the last 150 years, it looks like when an area goes from being logged and mined to left alone,” Ms. Watts said. “The ecosystem has come back to full trees and mature forests.”As federal protections took effect after the Park Service began overseeing the area as a national river in 1978, wildlife has largely recovered, and many see an opportunity to showcase the region’s natural elegance.“To show off our rock climbing, our extreme sports availabilities in that area, is just really exciting,” said Ms. Capito of what she described as a “kind of wild and wonderful part of our state.” ‘The cream of the crop’The National Park Service, created in 1916, oversees more than 400 areas across the country, including national monuments, seashores and battlefields as well as parks, which together total more than 85 million acres.While the new title for New River Gorge does not fundamentally alter the area’s day-to-day operations, both lawmakers and the Park Service tend to view “national parks” as the crown jewels of the park system — a protection granted to some of the largest and most prized tracts of the country.“National Park status is usually considered like the cream of the crop,” Ms. Watts said. “But it really is just another one of those names.”The New River Gorge does not match the scale of many national parks in the western United States, where Death Valley, the Grand Canyon and Yellowstone sprawl over more than 1 million acres each.Nevertheless, officials expect the new designation to bring a substantial influx of travelers, boosted in part by a dedicated set of enthusiasts who strive to visit every national park.In typical years, around 1.3 million travelers visit the gorge, according to the Park Service’s tourism data. Based on studies of other areas that received national park status, Ms. Capito said she expects to see visitors increase by as much as 20 percent.“It does feel like the very beginning stages of transformation for the whole area,” said Becky Sullivan, the executive director of the New River Gorge Convention and Visitors Bureau. “I’ll be very, very interested to see where we are in about 10 years.”Maintaining the community and its favored pastimesAs unique outdoor attractions throughout the Appalachian region have gained more national visibility, some concern has grown over the idea of a wealthy and mobile set from out of state trampling the communities adjacent to these places.West Virginia remains the second-poorest state in the country in terms of median household income, according to data collected by the United States Census Bureau. And while tourism has brought a needed injection of wealth to areas all around the gorge, it has also changed the makeup of neighboring communities, as more people have come to visit the park or settle down near it.Interest in the natural offerings around the park has brought slow but measurable change for small towns nearby like Fayetteville. Officials say that the advent of remote work during the pandemic has only hastened a trend of properties in the area being repurposed for vacation rentals and outsiders snapping up second homes.“You cannot find a house for sale in Fayetteville, because they’re just in such high demand,” said Sharon Cruikshank, the town’s mayor. “So that definitely changed the budgeting of the town as well as the county.”When legislation was first introduced to designate the area as a national park, pushback came from some locals. Hunters have long enjoyed access to secluded sections of woods around the gorge, and with hunting prohibited in federal parks, some protested the potential loss of thousands of acres of hunting grounds.In a compromise, more than 65,000 acres of the total area were designated as a nature preserve where hunting can continue as before, and only roughly 7,000 acres directly within the canyon are officially off limits as national parkland. A provision was included to empower the park to acquire more than 3,000 acres of private land around its current boundaries as well, to expand the size of the preserve and add public hunting grounds.In a nod to tradition, the legislation also enshrines the right for visitors to continue to make use of one of the park’s most famous features — the New River Gorge Bridge — at least once a year.BASE jumping, an extreme sport in which jumpers parachute from elevated structures or cliffs, is banned in every other national park.But, since 1980, BASE jumpers have been permitted to plunge from the top of the 876-foot-high bridge and parachute down toward the river once a year, on Bridge Day, held one Saturday in October. The legislation designating the area as a national park allows that tradition to continue.As many as 100,000 people typically come to watch the jumpers plunge, according to Ms. Sullivan, providing a major boost for businesses in the region. The event has only been canceled twice, including last year because of the coronavirus.Bridge Day’s organizers advise jumpers that the only dependable way to touch down safely is to plan to land directly in the river. In normal years, hundreds do so, often multiple times that day, gliding down and softly hitting the New River’s waters.
GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN – DECEMBER 06: David Bakhtiari #69 of the Green Bay Packers warms up before the game against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lambeau Field on December 06, 2020 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)Restructuring David Bakhtiari’s contract will give the Packers over $8 million in additional salary cap room in 2021. What will Green Bay do with it?David Bakhtiari isn’t giving any money back to the Packers over the long haul, but his decision to convert a roster bonus into a signing bonus is giving Green Bay approximately $8.3 million more in 2021 cap space to work with. The pressure is now on the team’s front office to use the money to get Bakhtiari and his teammates back to the Super Bowl.Packers fans shouldn’t get too excited. This move won’t permit Green Bay to become massive spenders in free agency. At the moment, they’re still projected to be over the 2021 salary cap. Bakhtiari’s move gives the team some much-needed breathing room, but it won’t be enough to allow them to reel in a big-time free agent.This piece identifies three impactful moves the Packers can now make after the Bakhtiari news. None projects to be an absolute game-changer for Green Bay, but both could be very helpful in the team’s pursuit to give Aaron Rodgers one more shot at winning a Lombardi Trophy.The #Packers recently created about $8.3M in cap space by converting LT David Bakhtiari’s more than $11M roster bonus into a signing bonus and spreading it out over the length of the contract. He’ll make the same as before, but it gives GB some room to operate.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 13, 20213. Make J.J. Watt a competitive offerOver a dozen NFL teams have already expressed interest in Watt after the Texans’ decision to let him go. Predictably, the Packers are one of the interested parties.The $8 million and change saved via the Bakhtiari deal isn’t going to be enough to land Watt, but it gets Green Bay within range to land the veteran edge rusher. It’s unlikely that he’s going to make his decision based purely on money, but Green Bay still needs to make a credible offer if they want to fend off the competition. This move gives the Packers a chance to bring Watt home in free agency.
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