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In this Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2014 photo, Zachary Glascock uses a lathe to create a wooden chess piece during machining class at Vicksburg High School in Vicksburg, Mich. Kalamazoo County's nine school districts are launching a new program in which students can earn a degree or certificate from Kalamazoo Valley Community College during a "13th grade" in high school. (AP Photo/Kalamazoo Gazette-MLive Media Group,Christian Randolph ) ALL LOCAL TELEVISION OUT; LOCAL TELEVISION INTERNET OUT

5-year program offers degrees to high schoolers

- Associated Press

Kalamazoo County's nine school districts are launching a new program in which students can earn a degree or certificate from Kalamazoo Valley Community College during a "13th grade" in high school.

ADVANCE FOR USE SUNDAY, DEC. 21 - In this photo taken on Dec. 10, 2014, Lee Epstein, who has led a full life with part of it being "Eppy the Clown" entertaining people, poses for a photo in his home town of Wimberley, Texas. Recent health issues has led he and his wife Sandi to move back to New York to be closer to family. In appreciation for his volunteer work, the community and friends held a benefit in his honor to raise money for expenses.  (AP Photo/Austin American-Statesman, Ralph Barrera)  AUSTIN CHRONICLE OUT, COMMUNITY IMPACT OUT, INTERNET AND TV MUST CREDIT PHOTOGRAPHER AND STATESMAN.COM, MAGS OUT

Wimberley bands together to help beloved local character

- Associated Press

As a child in the 1940s, Lee Epstein had polio and spent a year in a hospital two hours away from his home in Brooklyn, N.Y. From feeling lonely when he was in the hospital to being excluded from playground games when he was released, the disease's psychological impacts were almost as bad the physical ones, he said.

In this Nov. 2013 photo, Emily and Travis Motter, with Madeline and 5-month-old Jack, walk at the Bridge of the Gods Trailhead on the Pacific Crest Trail in Cascade Locks, Ore. The popularity of Cheryl Strayed's memoir "Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail" has led to increased awareness and use of the trail that runs from Canada to Mexico through Washington, Oregon and California. (AP Photo/Statesman-Journal, Thomas Patterson)

Movie "Wild" generates more interest in Pacific Crest Trail

- Associated Press

The popularity of Cheryl Strayed's memoir "Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail" has led to increased awareness and use of the trail that runs from Canada to Mexico through Washington, Oregon and California. There are more thru-hikers - people who, like Strayed, attempt to hike the entire trail - and more day and overnight users of this incredible national resource.

FILE - This file image released by Boneau/Bryan-Brown shows Neil Patrick Harris in a scene from "Hedwig and the Angry Inch," at the Belasco Theatre in New York.  (AP Photo/Boneau/Bryan-Brown, Joan Marcus, File)

The AP picks its Top 10 theater of 2014

- Associated Press

This year's best-in-theater list includes a musical with multiple murders, another with a cross-dressing German, one that's set in a decadent Berlin nightclub, the revival of an America masterpiece and we celebrate someone who broke an important barrier. Our Top 10 list of the best in theater in 2014:

Revere actress portrays Revolutionary characters

- Associated Press

A suffragette rejected by peers when she married. A Hollywood temptress and inventor. The first woman in the American military. Revere actress Judith Kalaora said she is drawn to characters who seem conflicted about society's gender roles.

In this image released by The CW, Gina Rodriguez portrays Jane in the new series, "Jane The Virgin."  (AP Photo/The CW, Tyler Golden)

2014 gave viewers great shows on-air and online

- Associated Press

From the extraordinary Maggie Gyllenhaal-starring miniseries "The Honorable Woman" on SundanceTV to Syfy's goofy "Sharknado 2: The Second One," TV delivered in 2014 - streaming, on cable and over the air.

AP Interview: Coelho says Sony hack threatens all

- Associated Press

Brazilian author Paulo Coelho says the Sony hack threatens us all if society doesn't enforce important values: our individual and collective freedom of expression and an unwavering refusal to negotiate with anonymous terrorists.