returns to D.C.
WASHINGTON - The Washington National Cathedral will be offering tours of its unique stone carvings for the first time since the building was damaged by an earthquake last year. Tours exploring more than 100 gargoyles perched on the cathedral's facade will begin again Sunday at 2 p.m. The gargoyles include monsters, dogs and horses, as well as "Star Wars" villain Darth Vader. The cathedral had to suspend the tour, as well as other regular events, following a 5.8-magnitude earthquake on Aug. 23. The quake caused stonework to fall from the building's towers and other damage. The cathedral reopened in November. Repairs are expected to take years.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Hot-air balloons will fill the skies over Louisville for the next few days as Kentucky Derby Festival events continue. The Great BalloonFest features five events that get under way on Thursday and run through Saturday, when the Great Balloon Race is scheduled to take place at 7 a.m. It all starts Thursday when the balloons fly into E.P. "Tom" Sawyer State Park at 5:30 p.m. before heading to the Great Balloon Glimmer at Fest-a-Ville on the Waterfront that night.
Lei day coming
HONOLULU - Honolulu will carry on a decades-old tradition with hula, songs, lei and lauhala weaving on Lei Day, May 1. The theme for this year's celebration is Lei Ui Onaona or Sweet Lei of Youth.
Hijack prank lands
man in court
SALT LAKE CITY - A 31-year-old man from Utah is facing a federal charge after he allegedly left an apparent prank note that included the words "hijack plane" and "kill Obama" in his co-worker's luggage. Jeremiah Douglas Hill, of Clinton, was charged Wednesday with one misdemeanor count of making a false alarm for intentionally circulating a false warning of a plane hijacking. Authorities say Hill slipped the note into the luggage last summer while at Hill Air Force Base. The note read: "1 - Hijack Plane, 2 - Kill Obama." It was discovered by an airport screener as the co-worker boarded a flight from Utah to Arizona.
Costa CEO retires
MIAMI - Carnival Corp. said Monday that Pier Luigi Foschi is retiring as CEO of the Costa Group on July 1, which will be nearly 6 months after the Costa Concordia capsized off the coast of Italy and killed 32 people. The cruise operator said that Foschi, 65, was scheduled to retire once he hit that age. Michael Thamm, currently president of Aida Cruises, will become CEO of Costa Group once Foschi retires. The group includes Costa Cruises, Aida Cruises and Ibero Cruises.
Puppy on board
NEW YORK - A puppy named Byrdie delayed several flights at New York's LaGuardia Airport when she escaped from her crate and frolicked around a busy runway. The Port Authority says the 30-pound Rhodesian ridgeback scampered around the runway for about 10 minutes on Wednesday while authorities unsuccessfully tried to collar her. The agency says they had to find the pooch's owner aboard the Memphis-bound Delta Air Lines Airbus to help catch it. The owner called out to the pup and she came running to her.