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Coronavirus Europe: Schools prepare for winter with open windows

With temperatures in Germany frequently dropping to freezing, children in the city of Bochum are bracing for a crisp learning environment as officials advise teachers to open the windows for fresh air every 20 minutes. Children have been told to bring blankets and wrap up.

Critics have called the advice a threat to the health of students, with Finn Wandhoff, chairman of the Student Union of Germany, accusing the government of failing the education system by not opting for online learning.

In Scotland, where First Minister Nicola Sturgeon says keeping schools open is a priority, Edinburgh’s chief education officer, Andy Gray, wrote a letter to parents urging them to ensure that their children wear extra layers of clothing when they return to school on Oct. 26 after a midterm break, local media reported.

In guidance issued in August, the Scottish government said: “The opening of doors and windows, where it is safe to do so, should be encouraged to increase natural ventilation and also to reduce contact with door handles.”

British health expert Susan Michie pointed out that many schools have windows that do not open and, therefore, need government funding to boost ventilation.

“I think also pupils will have to get used to — and staff — coming in wearing more clothes,” Michie said.

Britain remains the worst-hit country in Europe, with almost 43,000 lives lost to the coronavirus.

Pablo del Pozo, a music teacher in Spain’s southern Cádiz province, told El Pais newspaper that students were being forced to sit by wet window sills during lessons, leading to complaints.

“We are being told that it’s better for a child to catch pneumonia than covid-19,” he said.

Although some schools struggle with the advice that the cold air needs to be brought in, schools in Denmark and other Nordic education systems are taking lessons — and young students — outside.

More than half of about 200 Norwegian schools surveyed in a poll by researchers Ulrich Dettweiler and Gabriele Lauterbach last month said they were holding more classes outdoors — a move some already had planned on that was further propelled by the pandemic.

At Samso Frie Skole, a private school on the Danish island of Samso, young children bike or walk to a nearby forest, where they sit on logs to study and shelter in farmhouses from bad weather.

Being outdoors, staff members say, has had positive effects on many of the students, who use stones to work out during physical-education classes and hunch over crawling insects during biodiversity lessons.

But in the United States, the debate isn’t just about the weather.

Although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calls to open windows and doors for fresh air to flow through classrooms, teachers say they must tread a fine line between protecting students from the global health crisis and from the threat of a school shooting.

“Do I keep my classroom door open to improve air circulation or close it to protect my students from an active shooter?

Gyms are open, but NYC’s still killing the independent-fitness-studio industry

Mr. Mayor, let’s get this straight: Indoor dining, indoor swimming, facials and gym workouts all got the green light to reopen, but ­Pilates, yoga and high-intensity interval-training classes remain a no-go?

How does Gotham’s healthiest industry remain shut down, months after the pandemic peaked? Our industry’s mission is to keep New Yorkers healthy through these crazy times, and we, of all businesses, are shuttered and forgotten about.

It’s baffling.

We are racking up rent bills from months spent waiting for our turn to open, with exactly zero revenue coming in. And now it isn’t clear whether that turn will come in this calendar year or the next.

Restaurants’ struggles have been front-page news for months, schools are finally open and Broadway is getting its bailout. But since we lack the size, organization and lobbyists, we aren’t getting any attention from you or your administration. What do we need to do to get a chance at survival?

There are more than 7,000 boutique fitness studios in the Big Apple that employ more than 100,000 taxpaying New Yorkers. Well, actually, we should say that there were 7,000 studios pre-pandemic — now it’s more like 6,000, and if we can’t open up in the next month, it will be more like 5,000.

An industry that was born in 2006 in New York City is now at risk of dying in 2020 on your watch. All you have to do to save the industry is let us open up with the same guidelines as our gym friends. You have deemed them fit to open, and we are just as safe.

Today, someone can go to a gym and run on a treadmill six feet away from the next runner. But the moment an instructor enters the picture, that same activity is illegal.

Again, baffling and bizarre. Since when is fitness at the gym any safer than fitness classes? There is absolutely zero evidence of group fitness being any more of a risk than gym fitness.

We can and would require masks and social distance. We would limit equipment sharing. We would implement contact tracing and upgrade our air filters to ensure our staff and clients are safe. Please, give us a chance to show you — and a fighting chance to survive this pandemic.

You claim to be a champion of small businesses, women and minorities — and guess what? We are all of those things. Many of us founders of firms are women, and a majority of our staff and clientele are also women.

In fact, 80 percent of the New Yorkers we serve are female. We employ diverse staff in our studios and our offices, and a majority of those folks are still unemployed. Why is it that male-friendly gym workouts can resume, but workouts with stronger female appeal are banned?

The longer we are shuttered, the harder it will be to bring back our out-of-work employees and our clients who’ve had to find an alternative way to stay fit — or,

‘The Challenge’ star Abram Boise and pregnant wife open up about ‘vanishing twin’

MTV’s “The Challenge” star Abram Boise and his wife, Rachel Missie Boise, recently shared with fans that she’s pregnant with their first child. But the pregnancy hasn’t been what they were expecting.

In an Instagram post on Sunday, Missie Boise explained that the couple experienced what’s called a vanishing twin.

“My husband and I are so excited to announce we’re expecting our first child!” the mom-to-be wrote alongside a photo of herself and Boise, 37, exchanging a kiss as she holds up a sonogram. “This pregnancy started out as twins however within the first trimester my body decided it could only support one baby.”

“We experienced what’s called ‘vanishing twin,'” she continued. “The body sacrifices and reabsorbs the other fetus into the uterine wall, putting all that nourishment towards the strongest baby. We had gotten so attached to the idea of twins and mourned the loss of what could have been.”

“Now we continue to celebrate what is, the beautiful life growing healthy and strong,” Missie Boise concluded. “Our bodies are so dedicated towards protecting, and making decisions towards the greater good. Remember to be gentle, take care, and love yourself as your body chooses to love you.”

Vanishing twin syndrome usually occurs within the first trimester of pregnancy. They’re more commonly reported now than in previous years thanks to advancements in ultrasound technology, which can detect multiple pregnancies earlier than ever, according to

Vanishing twins are thought to occur in 20 to 30% of pregnancies, and often the mother doesn’t experience any symptoms. In fact, she usually goes on to have a normal pregnancy and deliver the single baby without complications, according to What To Expect.

A mom who lost one of her twins during pregnancy several years ago, Maura Deptula of Chicago, previously told TODAY that the experience left her “struck by how powerful my sadness was and how it lived alongside my great hope and joy.”

“I had people close to me say things like everything you went through was worth it because you now have this beautiful baby,” she recalled to TODAY. “And it will be easier for you to have only one, in the end, you’ll be happier.”

A vanishing twin left another mom, Julie Cook, a writer for the Daily Telegraph, wondering about the good and bad of early stage ultrasounds.

“Scans have enormous benefits, but do they also have a downside?” she wrote in a blog post a few years back. “Greater technology means greater awareness. But ignorance can sometimes be bliss.”

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Trump wanted to rip open shirt to show Superman t-shirt when leaving Walter Reed: report

President Trump considered staging his own Clark Kent moment as he exited last week from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center by ripping open a button-down to reveal a Superman T-shirt underneath, according to The New York Times.

The Times reported on Saturday that during several phone calls from inside the hospital last weekend, Trump shared the idea of appearing frail when he emerged from the facility then exposing the Superman t-shirt underneath his top layer, which he described as a symbol of strength, according to sources with knowledge of the conversations.

Trump reportedly spoke about the idea on multiple phone calls. In the end, the president did not going along with the move. 

The report from the Times came on the same day Trump made his first public appearance on Saturday since returning to the White House from Walter Reed on Monday after a three-night stay following his COVID-19 diagnosis. 

The Times reported the president, who spoke for less than 20 minutes on Saturday, also had a bandage on his hand, which it noted was “a reminder of the treatments and infusions” he has gotten in recent days.

Trump’s doctors have said he was given a steroid, an antiviral drug and an experimental antibody therapy during his treatment of the highly infectious disease. 

The day before his left Walter Reed, Trump was criticized for leaving the facility to wave at supporters from an SUV with two Secret Service agents in the front seat.

Upon returning to the White House the following day on Monday, Trump also got heat for posing for photos on the balcony without a mask, then entering the residence without a face covering.

Just days before, Trump was reported to be exhibiting fatigue and fever. He also had been given supplemental oxygen before and during his stay at Walter Reed, his doctors said during a weekend of conflicting updates on the president’s health.

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Bars near WVU can open Tuesday

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Gov. Jim Justice announced Friday that bars around West Virginia University in Morgantown can reopen next Tuesday, a month after images of maskless college students packing bars led them to be shut down.

Police and state alcohol regulators will step up enforcement in the college town, Justice said at a coronavirus press briefing. The Republican governor abruptly ordered Monongalia County bars to close indefinitely on Sept. 2 — just two days after allowing them to reopen — as many patrons lined up without social distancing.

The owners of 12 restaurants and bars sued the governor and local officials in Morgantown last month in federal court over the shutdown.

“Bars that don’t enforce these guidelines, where we see a bunch of people packed in with no mask wearing … you will be shut down again,” Justice said, adding establishments risk having their licenses suspended.

County officials previously required bars to cut indoor seating occupancy by half, close dance floors and discontinue live performances and entertainment. Restaurants in the county had been able to continue dine-in service without operating their bars. Morgantown city officials did not immediately return a request for comment.



— President Trump credits antibody drug for quick recovery

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— British government will announce more support for businesses to retain staff in the coming months if they are forced to close because of lockdown restrictions.

— President Donald Trump says he wants to try to hold a campaign rally in Florida on Saturday, despite his recent COVID-19 diagnosis.

— Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at and



OKLAHOMA CITY — The number of people hospitalized in Oklahoma due to the coronavirus surged to a record one-day high of 749 on Friday, according to the Oklahoma State Department of Health.

The number hospitalized either with the virus or under investigation for infection surpassed the previous high of 738 reported on Wednesday.

The department also reported 1,524 newly confirmed cases of the virus, the second highest daily increase since 1,7,14 new cases were reported on July 21, and 97,088 total cases. There are six additional deaths due to COVID-19, the illness caused by the virus, bringing the total to 1,091. There were 13,515 active cases of the virus on Thursday, and 82,482 people have recoverd, according to the health department.


NATCHEZ, Miss. — A brother and sister in Natchez have both died of the coronavirus, Adams County Coroner James Lee said.

On Friday, Oct. 2, a 73-year-old woman died of the COVID-19 disease caused by the virus, and her 69-year-old brother died two days later, Lee told the Natchez Democrat.

“I’ve seen an increase in COVID deaths in Adams County in the past month and it’s very scary to me,” Lee told the Democrat earlier this week. Lee

Manhattan Beach Playgrounds, Fitness Stations Open; Polliwog Not

MANHATTAN BEACH, CA — Parents, caretakers, and kids got great news the other day when the Manhattan Beach City Council directed city staff to reopen all playgrounds and fitness stations that had been closed due to COVID-19. Recreation and Parks Director Mark Leyman confirmed with Manhattan Beach Patch Thursday that all but Polliwog Park play areas would reopen to the public by end of day Thursday and that his department was working with Public Works to establish cleaning protocols for the equipment and the frequency of those cleanings.

Leyman noted that Polliwog Park is not reopening its playground equipment areas since both upper and lower areas are scheduled for repair work. “Specifically, the surfacing needs to be replaced on the upper playground, and as you may have heard, the lower playground equipment and surfacing is a current capital project which should be completed by summer 2021,” he said. He noted that the upper playground surfacing replacement “is also part of the lower playground capital project, however, we are hoping to have this completed in the upcoming months.”

The outdoor playgrounds and fitness stations now open are

  • Live Oak Park Tot Lot

  • Live Oak Park north end playground

  • Sand Dune Park

  • Marine Avenue Park

  • Larsson Street Parkette

  • 8th Street Parkette

  • Manhattan Village

  • Manhattan Heights (open for limited hours)

  • Veteran’s Parkway’s Mariposa Fitness Station

  • The Strand Fitness Station at 26th Street

  • Polliwog Park upper level swings, and

  • Polliwog Park Fitness Station.

Signs at each playground and fitness stations location will inform the community they need to

  • wear face coverings

  • socially distance at least 6 feet from non-household members

  • wash hands frequently

  • limit equipment to 30 minutes of use

  • stay home if not feeling well, and

  • no food and beverages on the play or fitness equipment.

Each area has also a maximum allowed capacity to ensure social distancing can take place.

This article originally appeared on the Manhattan Beach Patch

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Novak Djokovic enters French Open semi-finals but faces fitness battle

Video: Serena pulls out of French Open with Achilles injury (Reuters)

Serena pulls out of French Open with Achilles injury



Novak Djokovic is still in the French Open – but only after a drawn-out struggle in four sets on Wednesday night against Pablo Carreño Busta, the Spaniard who cashed in at the US Open when the world No 1 was disqualified for striking a line official with a spare ball. It was not a joyous reunion.

Novak Djokovic is swinging a racket at a ball: Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

A month after their shared New York drama, Carreño Busta had notions of winning on his own merits after taking the first set of the second quarter-final on day 11, but Djokovic ignored nagging pain in his upper left arm and his neck as he cobbled together a 4-6, 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 win in 3hr 10min under the lights on Court Philippe Chatrier. He has two days to recover before playing Stefanos Tsitsipas on Friday, and he will need every waking hour of them.

Novak Djokovic is swinging a racket at a ball: Novak Djokovic plays a forehand during his French Open quarter-final victory against Pablo Carreño Busta of Spain.

© Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
Novak Djokovic plays a forehand during his French Open quarter-final victory against Pablo Carreño Busta of Spain.

Related: Rafael Nadal weathers cold and Jannik Sinner to reach French Open semi-final

If the 2016 champion is to win the title again he has to beat injury, an in-form Tsitsipas and, probably, the 12-time champion, Rafael Nadal, who plays Diego Schwartzman in the other semi-final. It is the sort of mountain Djokovic loves climbing, but the question remains: is he fit and strong enough to reach the summit?

Djokovic was cleared to play in Rome, where he beat Schwartzman in the final, and in Paris after testing positive for coronavirus on his Balkans exhibition tour earlier in the summer – but he looked a physical mess in the first set. Sweating and anxious, he grimaced, tugged at his arm and bandaged neck and tried to bang life into his upper legs with his racket as his opponent waited for his chances.

The tournament physio massaged Djokovic’s arm during the break and the player told him: “It feels better now.” Yet he did not look remotely comfortable, even when he got his serve working and levelled at a set apiece. The trainer returned between the third and fourth games, and it seemed to lift Djokovic’s spirits. Just when he looked as if he was slipping into a confused state again, he bounced back to level at a set apiece.

Related: Petra Kvitova sets up French Open semi-final meeting with Sofia Kenin

He broke early in the third, overcame a blip when Carreño Busta broke back for 2-3, then hit hard again to go a set up. But he looked far from commanding. Carreño Busta dug his heels into the Roland Garros clay in the fourth, and Djokovic had to fight for every point. Carreño Busta chose a woeful option to hand him the break for 3-4, Djokovic saved break point to hold through deuce

Wisconsin to open field hospital as COVID-19 hospitalizations surge

Wisconsin will be opening a field hospital at the state fairgrounds near Milwaukee next week as a spike in coronavirus cases and hospitalizations is threatening to overwhelm hospital systems, Gov. Tony Evers (D) announced Wednesday.

The state has become one of the nation’s new COVID-19 hot spots in recent weeks and has ranked third nationwide this week in daily new cases per capita, according to The Associated Press. Health officials have attributed the surge to the reopening of universities and K-12 schools and fatigue among the public over health measures such as wearing masks and social distancing. 

Our country is in a historic fight against the coronavirus. Add Changing America to your Facebook or Twitter feed to stay on top of the news.

State officials said Wednesday that due to the increase in COVID-19 cases last month, hospitals fear they may soon reach capacity.

In early September, there were 289 patients hospitalized with COVID-19, but on Wednesday, state officials said 853 patients are hospitalized across the state and 216 are in intensive care. About 16 percent of the state’s hospital beds are currently available. 

“We hoped this day wouldn’t come, but unfortunately, Wisconsin is in a much different, more dire place today and our healthcare systems are beginning to become overwhelmed by the surge of COVID-19 cases,” Evers said Wednesday in a press release. 

“This alternative care facility will take some of the pressure off our healthcare facilities while expanding the continuum of care for folks who have COVID-19,” he said.  

The governor’s office said hospitals are also experiencing critical worker shortages as staff members are becoming infected or exposed to the virus. 

The alternative care facility will open on Oct. 14 and has space for 530 patients. The facility will not accept walk-in patients, but will instead coordinate with hospitals to treat those who are not seriously ill in need of hospital-level care. 

Since the start of the pandemic, Wisconsin has confirmed 138,698 coronavirus cases and 1,415 deaths, according to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.








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Wisconsin to open field hospital as cases surge

MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin’s governor has announced a field hospital at the state fairgrounds will open within the next week as a surge in coronavirus cases threatens to overwhelm hospitals.

According to the state Department of Health Services, only 16% of the state’s 11,452 hospital beds are available as of Tuesday afternoon. The number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients has grown to 853, including 216 in intensive care.

The COVID-19 test results on an additional 262 in-patients are pending. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built a 530-bed field hospital on the state fairgrounds in West Allis in April, but it wasn’t needed until now.



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— Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at and



MONTGOMERY, Ala. — U.S. District Judge Keith Watkins refused to grant the temporary restraining order requested by plaintiffs represented by former Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore.

Watkins says there is no urgency because the health orders were first issued this spring and the mask order followed in July. The case will go forward. Watkins asked the two sides to file briefs on whether the case should be dismissed.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey last week extended the state mask order through Nov. 8. Ivey says the measure has proven effective at helping control the state’s coronavirus outbreak even if some people do not like it.

Moore argued the mandate, as well as state health orders that closed businesses or directed people to stay home, were unconstitutional. The lawsuit was filed by Moore’s Foundation for Moral Law on behalf of seven plaintiffs.


JOHNSTON, Iowa — Gov. Kim Reynolds says the health care system can handle the increase in coronavirus cases and record hospitalizations without more action to reduce infections.

There were 444 people treated for the coronavirus in hospitals on Wednesday. In the past day, the state confirmed 919 new positive cases and 15 deaths.

Despite the increases, Reynolds said hospital officials had reported that they were equipped to handle the surge.

Reynolds emphasized everyone needs to take personal responsibility. Asked whether the state should do more, Reynolds says there would be a cost to requiring more stringent safety measures.

She says it’s a balancing act, and she’s “working with Iowans and businesses across the state. There’s

When will Big Lots, Planet Fitness, T.J. Maxx, Five Below and Chipotle open in Hershey?

The owner of the Hershey Square shopping center said five new high-profile tenants will open their doors by next spring.

PennLive previously reported that Big Lots, Planet Fitness, T.J. Maxx and Five Below are coming to the former Kmart site in the Derry Township shopping center. A Chipotle Mexican Grill will open there as well.

Construction work to prepare the center for its new tenants began last month, said shopping center owner Heidenberg Properties.

Former Kmart store

The former Kmart store is located in Derry Township at the Hershey Square shopping center. (Daniel Urie, PennLive, File)

The Kmart closed in March 2019. From November through May, Heidenberg Properties said it executed 10-year lease agreements for more than 90,000 square feet of the site for T.J. Maxx, Big Lots, Five Below, and Planet Fitness. The Chipotle will be built on a new pad site in front of Weis Markets and will include a drive-thru lane.

“We knew that this space would be desirable to top-tier retailers and we couldn’t be more excited about the new tenant line up,” Heidenberg Properties’ VP of real estate Ken Simon said in a press release. “The mix of treasure-hunt, value and experiential retailers that we are adding will well-position this property for the long term.”

“Late 2020” will be here before we know it! But in the meantime, we’re busy behind the scenes planning the space and designing equipment. Here’s a sneak peek at the vision board guiding our plans.

Posted by Where the Wild Things Play on Monday, January 20, 2020

A sixth tenant is also expected to open next year as well. Where the Wild Things Play, an indoor play space for children, will take up 4,000 square feet of space at the former Kmart space and will include five playhouses, an enclosed climbing structure and STEM activities, according to a Hummelstown Sun report. The company said on its Facebook page in June that it expects to open in the spring or the summer.

In addition to the 55,000-square-foot Weis Markets, the shopping center includes a number of smaller tenants, including Fine Wine & Good Spirits Premium Collection, Panera Bread, Five Guys, Visionworks and Applebee’s. The shopping center has more than 223,000 square feet of space.

Heidenberg Properties, a real estate development company based in New Jersey, acquired the Hershey Square shopping center in 2014.

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