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Published: 12/28/10

The Best of 2010's Animals in the News

By  Lee Speigel - AOL News
The Best of 2010's Animals in the News

2010 produced many weird, far-out, bizarre photos of people. But let's not forget all of the animals that made headlines over the past 12 months. Here are a few highlights. Throughout the year, we saw many odd animal items, and one that stretched our imaginations was Stewie, Reno, Nevada's world's longest cat. Andy Barron, Reno Gazette-Journal/AP Robin Henderson stretches her cat, Stewie, in Reno, Nev. At 48.5 inches long, the 5-year-old Maine Coon is the world's longest cat. But this Pussy Galore was hardly the only amazing feline we encountered. A Britis...

Published: 12/27/10

Bad Santa Update: Santa Cleared in RI Bar Robbery

By  Ben Muessig - AOL News
Bad Santa Update: Santa Cleared in RI Bar Robbery

Police in Rhode Island say Santa Claus can come to town -- without facing the risk of arrest. Days after a bartender claimed she had been robbed at gunpoint by a man in a Santa Claus suit in East Providence, the pub employee reportedly admitted the holiday heist was a hoax. East Providence Yacht Club bartender Christal Johnson, 37, surrendered to police on Thursday and faces charges of filing a false police report, according to AZCentral.com. Johnson allegedly placed the initial 911 call on Dec. 19, claiming a man dressed like Kris Kringle entered the bar around 7 p.m., then reached into...

Published: 12/25/10

Obamas' Christmas: Steak Dinner and Michelle Tracking Santa

By  Lynn Sweet - Politics Daily
Obamas' Christmas: Steak Dinner and Michelle Tracking Santa

Steak, roasted potatoes, green beans and pie were on the Christmas dinner menu for President Obama and his family Saturday at their oceanfront holiday home in Hawaii. On Christmas Eve, Mrs. Obama helped kids track Santa Claus' travel around the world with the assistance of NORAD radar. The Obama Family Christmas in Hawai For years, the Obama family has traveled to Hawaii, Obama's native state, to celebrate Christmas and the New Year. The Obamas' are staying in a rented a house in Oahu about 12 miles from Honolulu. In years past, Obama would also use the trip to visit his grandmother, Madelyn...

Published: 12/24/10

First Lady Fields Kid Calls as NORAD Tracks Santa

By  not in system - AOL News
First Lady Fields Kid Calls as NORAD Tracks Santa

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. - Some kids who call NORAD on Christmas Eve to find out where Santa is hang up as soon as a volunteer answers the phone - probably because they expected a recording and not a real person, veteran Santa trackers say. There were some especially awed kids Friday, when one of the people answering the phone was first lady Michelle Obama. A telephone link from Hawaii, where the Obamas are on vacation, allowed her to pitch in with volunteers at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., who were answering phone calls and e-mails for the North American Aerospace Defense Command's...

Published: 12/24/10

Awful Christmas Gift? Learn to Love It Through Hypnosis

By  Monica Garske - AOL News
Awful Christmas Gift? Learn to Love It Through Hypnosis

Everyone is bound to unwrap an awful gift or two on Christmas, but your reaction to that gaudy reindeer sweater from grandma doesn't have to be as bad as the gift itself. According to Australian comedy hypnotist Matthew Hale, there's a way to use self-hypnosis to elicit a natural, happy reaction from yourself during the Christmas gift exchange -- even if the present you're unwrapping is a nose hair trimmer, a scale or something equally offensive. Hale, who's been a traveling stage hypnotist for years, said his "Christmas happiness technique" is quite simple. In fact, with the right focus...

Published: 12/22/10

Bad Santa Update: Potty-Mouthed Female Santas Arrested in Ohio

By  Ben Muessig - AOL News
Bad Santa Update: Potty-Mouthed Female Santas Arrested in Ohio

What happens when Santacon -- or Santarchy -- gets out of control? Police in Ohio arrested two women dressed like Santa Claus after about 100 revelers wearing Santa outfits attempted to bring a holiday-themed flash mob to the Dayton Mall on Saturday night. After spending the day spreading the Christmas cheer at bars around the area, the Santas intended to gather near the mall's resident Kris Kringle and belt out Christmas carols -- purportedly with "off-color lyrics" -- according to DaytonDailyNews.com. Cops said the raunchy songs, paired with the fact that some of the Santas seemed to f...

Published: 12/22/10

Chimpanzees Go Ape for Santa

By  Susanna Baird - AOL News
Chimpanzees Go Ape for Santa

Santa Claus is conducting a dress rehearsal today, gearing up for his annual globe-spanning trek. Leaving his sleigh in the shop and his reindeer in the barn, St. Nick is traveling by boat to the Chimp Islands, sharing holiday cheer with a more hirsute audience than the good girls and boys he'll treat on Christmas Eve. Lion Country Safari in Loxahatchee, Fla., the country's first cageless zoo, hosts its 26th Christmas with the Chimps today. Guests stand on the shore, watching across the water as Santa Claus monkeys around. (A merry monkey tidbit: Chimpanzees are not monkeys. They are, l...

Published: 12/22/10

Take in the Beautiful Sights During Holiday Travels

By  Chris Epting - AOL News
Take in the Beautiful Sights During Holiday Travels

If you travel during the holidays, why not allow some time to visit some holiday-related landmarks around the country? After all, wouldn't it be fun to be the first person on your block to visit, say, the world's largest stucco snowman? So on that note, here are a few favorite holiday stopping points, from the sublime to the ridiculous. Santa's Workshop and Village North Pole, N.Y. 800-806-0215 When Santa's Workshop opened its doors in July 1, 1949, little did the developers know that they had introduced a new form of outdoor entertainment ultimately to become known as the "theme park." Today...

Published: 12/21/10

It's Hard Out There for a Mall Santa

By  Monica Garske - AOL News

Getting paid to dress up as cheery, chubby Santa Claus may seem like a cushy seasonal job, but the truth is, it's hard out there for a Santa -- especially a mall Santa. Just ask professional Santa Claus Tom Carmody, a former high school teacher who's been "Clausing" for the past eight years, four of which were spent at malls around the U.S. Carmody told AOL News that being a professional mall Santa is a tougher job than most people realize. Turns out, only the strong survive. Courtesy of Tom Carmody Professional Santa Tom Carmody admits being a mall Santa is tough, but in the end,...

Published: 12/20/10

Santa Claus Pictures [PHOTOS]

By  not in system - AOL News
Santa Claus Pictures [PHOTOS]

http://xml.channel.aol.com/xmlpublisher/fetch.v2.xml?option=expand_relative_urls&dataUrlNodes=uiConfig,feedConfig,localizationConfig,entry&id=962003&pid=962002&uts=1291847468 http://www.aolcdn.com/ke/media_gallery/v1/ke_media_gallery_wrapper.swf Santas, Santas Everywhere Glassblower Gerd Zinner manufactures a head of a Santa Claus as a Christmas ornament in the Krebs Glas Lauscha GmbH in Ernstthal near Lauscha, Germany, Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2010. The company is one of the leading global manufactures of Christmas ornaments. (AP Photo/Jen...

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