- - Sunday, April 29, 2012

TOOMSBORO — A developer in south Georgia is looking for someone to buy a small town.

Toomsboro, a small community with about 700 residents, has one convenience store, a florist, a custom cabinet shop and a post office. The Coastal Courier reports that developer David Bumgardner, who owns many of the properties in town, is putting them on the market.

Mr. Bumgardner bought some of the properties from preservationist Bill Lucado and snagged others at auction about a decade ago with the intention of turning Toomsboro into a quaint tourist town.

But his plans changed. Now Mr. Bumgardner and Mr. Lucado are putting the town up for sale again. Mr. Lucado thinks it would be a perfect fit for a movie production company seeking a set or a music company looking for a great venue.


With an asterisk, WTC is back on top in NYC

NEW YORK — One World Trade Center is expected to claim the title of New York City’s tallest skyscraper on Monday, as workers erect steel columns that will make its unfinished skeleton a little more than 1,250 feet tall.

That’s just high enough to peak over the roof of the observation deck on the Empire State Building.

The milestone carries an asterisk.

The tower still isn’t as high as the antenna that sits on the Empire State Building.

Experts usually don’t count antennas or flagpoles when measuring building height.

When complete, One World Trade will be the nation’s tallest building at 1,776 feet, but that’s only if you count the 408-foot-tall antenna spire that will sit on its roof.

Otherwise, it will still be No. 2, after the Willis Tower in Chicago.


3 dead, 1 missing in yacht race mishap

LOS ANGELES — Three crew members of a sailboat were found dead and a fourth person was missing Saturday after their yacht ran into trouble during a race off the coasts of California and Mexico, the state’s second ocean racing tragedy this month.

The 37-foot Aegean was participating in the 125-mile Newport, Calif. to Ensenada, Mexico, yacht race when something happened to the vessel, Coast Guard Petty Officer Henry Dunphy said.

Other yachts near the Coronado Islands in Mexico reported seeing debris from the sailboat Saturday morning. By midafternoon, searchers found the bodies and debris from the Aegean, whose home port is Redondo Beach, Officer Dunphy said.

The Coast Guard said it still doesn’t know if the yacht was in a wreck or what happened to it.

Officer Dunphy said conditions were fine for sailing, with good visibility and moderate ocean swells of 6-to-8 feet.

The names of the dead were not released pending notification of next of kin.

A total of 210 boats were registered in the 65th annual yacht race, according to the Newport Ocean Sailing Association’s website. It wasn’t immediately clear how many actually participated and how many finished.

The association’s commodore, reached by phone in Ensenada, said that he didn’t know the members of the Aegean or how many people were aboard.

“This has never happened in the entire 65 years of the race that I’m aware of,” Chuck Iverson said. “We’re all shocked by this whole event.”

The Coronado Islands are four small, largely uninhabited islands about 15 miles south of San Diego.

The deaths come two weeks after five sailors died in the waters off Northern California when their 38-foot yacht was hit by powerful waves, smashed into rocks and capsized during a race.


Dolphin spends third day in state wetlands

HUNTINGTON BEACH — A wayward dolphin is spending a third straight day in a narrow wetlands channel along the Southern California coast, under the watchful eyes of wildlife experts.

Peter Wallerstein of Marine Animal Rescue said Sunday that the 6-foot-long, black-and-white common dolphin looks healthy, but appears slightly disoriented.

The dolphin was spotted in a channel of the Bolsa Chica wetlands Friday, circling in shallow waters as crowds grew along the banks and TV helicopters flew overhead.

Wildlife experts on paddleboards managed to coax the animal toward the open sea Saturday, but it was spooked by a pair of fellow dolphins and swam back to the wetlands.

Mr. Wallerstein says rescuers might try to herd the dolphin back to the ocean on Monday, but they hope it will find its own way out.


Navy nears power deal to help avoid shortages

LOS ANGELES — The Navy is nearing a first-time agreement to reduce electricity use at its sprawling San Diego-area bases, if power runs short in Southern California this summer.

The Navy is San Diego Gas & Electric’s largest customer, and the deal is intended to diminish the threat of blackouts while the San Onofre nuclear plant remains offline.

Under the agreement, the Navy would temporarily reduce its energy consumption if supplies get scarce, in exchange for savings on rates. The utility has similar agreements with large industrial customers that can slash demand for power at critical times.

State officials have warned of rotating blackouts this summer in Southern California if a heat wave hits while the ailing reactors remain dark, though activists say adequate reserves are on hand.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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