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Longtime paranormal radio host Art Bell dead at 72

Published: Saturday, April 14, 2018 @ 4:34 AM

Longtime radio announcer Art Bell is dead at 72.
Taylor Weidman/Getty Images
Longtime radio announcer Art Bell is dead at 72.(Taylor Weidman/Getty Images)

Longtime radio host Art Bell, whose paranormal-themed show “Coast to Coast AM” was nationally syndicated, died Friday at his Nevada home, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. He was 72.

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The Nye County Sheriff’s Office announced Bell’s death.

Bell’s show was broadcast on approximately 500 North American radio stations during its peak in the 1990s. Bell’s program aired from his hometown of Pahrump before he left the late-night show in 2002. He had a brief stint on SiriusXM satellite radio in 2013, the Review-Journal reported.

Bell was born in Jacksonville, North Carolina, on June 17, 1945. He was a medic during the Vietnam War.

According to the Coast to Coast AM website, Bell was an FCC licensed radio technician at age 13. The website also said that Bell set a Guinness World Record for a solo broadcast marathon, at more than 116 hours, while working as a DJ on KSBK in Okinawa, Japan. That record has since been broken; the current mark of 205 hours, 2 minutes, 54 seconds was set in 2016 by Stefano Venneri on Radio BBSI in Alessandria, Italy, Guinness said on its website

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Beyoncé donates $100,000 to historically black colleges in four states

Published: Monday, April 16, 2018 @ 6:25 PM

Beyonce Five Fast Facts

After headlining Coachella music festival over the weekend, Beyoncé announced a major donation to four historically black colleges in four states.

The internationally-recognized superstar is giving $25,000 each to Tuskegee University in Alabama, Bethune-Cookman University in Florida, Xavier University of Louisiana and Wilberforce University in Ohio.

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“The Homecoming Scholars Award Program for 2018-2019 will expand to all qualifying students at the four universities, regardless of gender,” a news release on the program said. “The disciplines will include literature, creative arts, African- American studies, science, education, business, communications, social sciences, computer science and engineering. All applicants must maintain a 3.5 GPA or above.” 

Related: Destiny’s Child reunites during Beyonce’s Coachella performance

Beyoncé made the donations to the Homecoming Scholars Award program at the schools for the 2018-2019 academic year through her BeyGOOD initiative.

“We salute the rich legacy of Historically Black Colleges and Universities,” Ivy McGregor, Director of Philanthropy and Corporate Relations at Beyonce’s Parkwood Entertainment said in a statement. “We honor all institutions of higher learning for maintaining culture and creating environments for optimal learning which expands dreams and the seas of possibilities for students.”

The scholarship follows last year’s Formation Scholars Awards Program, which was established to celebrate the one-year anniversary of Beyonce’s 2016 album “Lemonade.”

Each university will select the winners, which will be announced this summer.

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Michael Jackson’s first moonwalk shoes up for auction

Published: Monday, April 23, 2018 @ 11:25 AM

Michael Jackson - A Timeline

The shoes worn by Michael Jackson when he did the moonwalk for the first time are up for auction.

CNN reported that the King of Pop’s Florsheim Imperial leather shoes which were owned by the late singer, are being auctioned by GWS Auctions.

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The black loafers were worn by Jackson when he did his signature moonwalk dance while performing “Billie Jean” on the TV special “Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever.” The 1983 show commemorated the record label’s 25th anniversary and marked the first time Jackson did his signature moonwalk.

Michael Jackson pictured in 2003. The black loafers worn by the late singer at "Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever" when he did his signature moonwalk for the first time are up for auction. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)(Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

“Anything related to Michael Jackson is extraordinary, and to have something so incredibly historical as these shoes worn by Michael when he first did that now famous moonwalk is beyond special,” Brigitte Kruse, owner of GWS Auctions, told CNN. “We are so very honored to be able to offer them at auction.”

Kruse said the auction house has a conservative estimate of $10,000 for the shoes.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the auction is May 26 in Los Angeles. Other items being auctioned include Jackson’s Swarovski-encrusted riding helmet and a red Christian Dior cardigan.

Jackson died of cardiac arrest from an overdose of propofol June 25, 2009.

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Dwayne Johnson answers girl's prom request, rents out theater for her

Published: Saturday, April 21, 2018 @ 6:59 AM

Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson Answers Girl’s Prom Request

An 18-year-old Minnesota student isn’t going to the prom with “The Rock,” but the actor and former wrestling star gave her the next best thing.

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Katie Kelzenberg of Stillwater Area High School had tweeted a video to Johnson, asking him to be her date for her school’s senior prom on May 5.

Friday during the school’s morning announcements, Kelzenberg and her fellow classmates were startled to hear Johnson’s voice over the intercom, ABC News reported.

“All right, let’s start this Friday morning announcement off with a little bit of fun and a little bit of excitement ... You're probably thinking 'What is 'The Rock' doing on our intercom system!?” Johnson said. “Well, I'm sending a message to very special young lady.”

While acknowledging that Kelzenberg might have been embarrassed -- in the video, her face reddens as Johnson continues to speak -- he thanked her for being “cool and awesome” for the prom invitation. He told the students that he was unable to make the prom because he would be in Hawaii filming his new movie, “Jungle Cruise.”

Then Johnson dug into his wrestling repertoire and dropped the People’s Elbow on the unsuspecting class.

Johnson told Kelzenberg that he was renting out a local theater for her friends and family to see a screening of Johnson’s movie, “Rampage,” with drinks and popcorn on him, ABC News reported.

"I want you to go and have the greatest time! I rented out 232 seats!" he said. "Katie, have the best time. Thank you for being awesome!"

SURPRISE KATIE KELZENBERG! About a week ago, I come across a video on my Twitter feed, from a student at Stillwater Area High School (oldest high school in Minnesota) asking me if I would be her date to her prom. Unfortunately, I’ll be shooting during that time in Hawaii, BUT I was so impressed by this young lady’s charm and confidence to even ask me (ladies always get shy in front of me) that I had to do something special. I decided to rent out an entire theater (capacity 232 seats) in her town so Katie and her closest 232 friends and family can enjoy a special screening of RAMPAGE. And all the free popcorn, candy and soda high school kids can consume! You’re money’s no good Katie... everything is on Uncle DJ. 🤙🏾🍿 🍭🥤!! And I also taped a special morning message surprising Katie and her high school that will play across the school’s intercom system... literally...RIGHT NOW, Katie should be turning red hearing me surprise her in front of her entire school. I wish I was there in person Katie, to see your reaction to all this, but I’ll hear about for sure and most importantly - you and all your friends have fun at the theater and ENJOY RAMPAGE! Thanks for being an AWESOME FAN and I’m a lucky dude to have fans like you. Uncle DJ 🤟🏾❤️ Ps - the gorilla in Rampage is way smarter (and better looking) than I am, but don’t tell him that because he has a HUGE ego 🦍

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'Smallville' actress Allison Mack indicted for alleged role in sex trafficking case

Published: Saturday, April 21, 2018 @ 4:34 AM

Actress Allison Mack was indicted Friday in New York.
Mark Davis/Getty Images
Actress Allison Mack was indicted Friday in New York.(Mark Davis/Getty Images)

Actress Allison Mack, who starred as Chloe Sullivan in the television series “Smallville,” was indicted Friday on charges of sex trafficking, sex trafficking conspiracy and forced labor conspiracy, the Justice Department said in a statement.

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Mack, 35, who starred in the series from 2001 to 2011, allegedly was involved with an organization called Nxivm that claimed to be a female mentorship but instead was a scheme in which some recruits “were exploited both sexually and for their labor, to the defendants' benefit," U.S attorney Richard P. Donoghue said in the statement.

Nxivm's founder, Keith Raniere, known as Vanguard, was also indicted Friday, CNN reported.

According to court filings, Mack directly or implicitly required her slaves, identified as Jane Does 1 and 2, to engage in sexual activity with Raniere. In exchange, Mack received financial and other benefits from Raniere. 

“Allison Mack recruited women to join what was purported to be a female mentorship group that was, in fact, created and led by Keith Raniere,” Donoghue said. “The victims were then exploited, both sexually and for their labor, to the defendants’ benefit.”

Raniere, 57, was arrested in March in Mexico by federal officials on sex-trafficking charges, The New York Times reported.

Mack was arraigned Friday afternoon and a plea of not guilty was entered on her behalf, the Times reported. She was held without bail, with a bail hearing set for Monday.

In addition to her role on “Smallville,” Mack was featured in the movies “Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves” in 1997 and “The Ant Bully” in 2006.

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