Curious George

at winter fest

WATERVILLE VALLEY, N.H. - A winter family festival featuring Curious George on the slopes will be held at the Waterville Valley Ski Resort.

The event on Jan. 19 will include a banana pancake breakfast at T-Bars Restaurant, followed by a courtyard procession with George, The Man with the Yellow Hat and their new friend, Bruce the Moose, Waterville Valley's newest mascot.

George plans to go skiing later in the day.

Civil War exhibit

DETROIT - The Detroit Institute of Arts is presenting a new installation of American art that examines the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln and the abolition of slavery.

The worksent on view Thursday and will become part of the permanent collection galleries in the museum's Richard A. Manoogian Wing of American art.

The works include George Henry Hall's still life titled "Patriotic Bouquet" and George C. Lambin's image of a Union officer titled "At the Front."

The installation is part of an effort to commemorate the Civil War and the 150th anniversary of the Emanci-pation Proclamation.

New Year's hikes

HARTFORD, Conn. - Connecticut environmental officials are encouraging residents to actively kick off the new year with a hike.

The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and the foundation America's State Parks are sponsoring so-called First Day Hikes at four state parks on Jan. 1. Hikes are planned at Sleeping Giant State Park in Hamden, Mansfield Hollow State Park in Mansfield, Hammonasset Beach State Park in Madison and Osbornedale State Park in Derby.

The hikes will be held between 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., vary in terrain and range from one to five miles. Dogs are not permitted on the Hammonassett or Sleeping Giant hikes.

For more information on the available hikes, visit

F-4 simulator

WICHITA, Kan. - The Kansas Aviation Museum is offering a rare opportunity for the public to experience a flight in an F-4 simulator.

The so-called F4 experience will be available Wednesdays through Sundays at the Wichita museum.

Detailed flight controls simulate the real thing. A museum volunteer and F-4 simulator creator Justin Messenger will take museum goers through various options from a quick flight to one the museum touts as challenging even for experienced pilots.

The museum is charging $20 for a basic flight that lasts 30 minutes and includes a simulated launch from an aircraft carrier.

For $60, the public can experience a so-called immersive flight lasting 90 minutes that includes suiting up in a functional flight suit and strapping to the ejection seat.

Press wire reports

Sardine drop

EASTPORT, Maine - The Great Sardine and Maple Leaf Drop to bring in the new year will be getting some national exposure.

CNN plans to broadcast that event live from Bank Square in Eastport, Maine, as part of its New Year's Eve Special with Anderson Cooper and Kathy Griffin.

The event takes place from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Grateful Dead exhibit

CLEVELAND - The Grateful Dead exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland has gotten a reprieve.

The exhibit opened in April and was due to wrap up by year's end. Now the rock hall says the exhibit titled "The Long, Strange Trip" has been extended through March 24.

The exhibit features manuscripts, handwritten notes, five Jerry Garcia guitars, a custom-painted drum kit and promoter Bill Graham's "Father Time" robe.

Several members of the Grateful Dead have toured the exhibit and participated in related programs, including Mickey Hart, Donna Jean Godchaux, Tom Constanten and Bill Kreutzmann.

The rock hall says the Grateful Dead were at the epicenter of the sweeping culture of San Francisco in the 1960's.