Days before the ball drops in Times Square, security is already building. To protect about 1 million revelers in the city, the NYPD is promising to step up patrols, canine teams and heavy-weapons squads. Concrete barriers are back, along with sand trucks to block vehicles. And the NYPD is putting special focus on aerial security, with spotters on buildings and officers stationed in every hotel along 7th Avenue in the event of a sniper-style attack. Other big cities are beefing up their security too. Chicago police said they are adding specialized teams with a focus on vehicle-style attacks, and for the first time Miami will conduct random security checks at its outdoor events.
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Alabama officials certified the results of its special Senate election Thursday, officially naming Democrat Doug Jones the victor not long after a judge rejected a last-minute challenge from Republican Roy Moore. Late Wednesday, hours before the Alabama State Canvassing Board was scheduled to meet Thursday to certify Jones’ victory, Moore and his campaign filed a lawsuit alleging that voter fraud had tainted the election results and requesting that certification be delayed.
The 75th Golden Globe Awards is coming up soon, and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association has been naming the stars that will be on hand to present awards. The association shared several big names on Thursday, including “Wonder Woman” leading lady Gal Gadot, Grammy winner Kelly Clarkson, “Scandal” star Kerry Washington, three-time former Golden Globe host Amy Poehler, Oscar winner Halle Berry and comedian Seth Rogen, among others. Seth Myers is set to host the live broadcast for the first time, which will air on NBC on January 7th at 8PM ET.
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This week Solange Knowles took to Instagram and shared with fans that she’s been “quietly treating” an unnamed autonomic disorder and will no longer be performing at AfroPunk Fest Johannesburg. The performance, which was announced in early May, was scheduled for New Years Eve 2018. Solange expressed how “saddened” and “sorry” she was to cancel, mentioning that South Africa and its native residents remain near to her heart. Ending the statement, Solange thanked AfroPunk and other festivals that have both kept the news concerning her health confidential plus “gone out of their way” to make her comfortable.
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Chris Stapleton’s new single, “Midnight Train to Memphis,” exemplifies his talent as a powerful vocalist and impressive guitar player. “Midnight Train to Memphis” appears on From A Room: Volume 2, the second project Stapleton released in 2017 and was co-written by the rising star and Mike Henderson. Singing of being stuck in jail for 40 days for not being able to pay his fine, Stapleton keeps listeners intrigued on the track and adequately portrays the frustration of a man stuck in jail counting down the days until his freedom.
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Although the TV show Nashville is coming to an end in 2018, series star Charles Esten plans to keep Nashville as his permanent home. Esten, who played Deacon Claybourne on the show, says he’s also became an avid member of the real-life community and that he and his family have grown to love Tennessee. From running his Light the Night event to help combat cancer and hosting the 2017 CMT Awards, the family have made Nashville home and have no plans to leave. Esten also plans to tour much more, either solo or with some of his Nashville cast mates. Season 6 of Nashville premieres on CMT on Jan. 4.
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Jay-Z has announced the release of his upcoming video for his song “Family Feud,” which features appearances by his wife, Beyonce, and his firstborn, Blue Ivy, 5. The rapper will premiere the full music clip on Friday, December 29, on his streaming site Tidal and he released a teaser for it on Thursday, December 28, via Twitter. The song, which also features vocals from Beyonce, talks about the separation in the black community, as well as addresses some of the rapper’s own marital issues.
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Rumors are flying that Love & Hip Hop: New York stars Remy Ma and Papoose are pregnant with their first child. In a series of cryptic Instagram posts, Papoose made it sound like the longtime couple — who tied the knot in 2008 — may be expecting. Fans of the VH1 reality series will recall that the songstress suffered a miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy, and was told that she wouldn’t be able to conceive children naturally. However, they remained hopeful they would expand their blended family — and ultimately decided to take the IVF route.
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Minnesota Twins All-Star slugger Miguel Sano is under investigation by Major League Baseball for a 2015 incident in which a photographer alleges Sano attempted to sexually assault her. The photographer, Betsy Bissen, wrote about the incident on her Twitter account on Thursday and said it happened after Sano participated in an autograph session at a local shopping mall. Bissen, who worked for Twins Daily at the time, said Sano repeatedly tried to kiss her and attempted to force her into a bathroom. MLB spokesman Mike Teevan said in a statement that “we are aware of the allegations and are now in the process of looking into it.”
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The New York Giants have hired former Carolina Panthers architect Dave Gettleman as their new general manager following Jerry Reese’s ouster on Dec. 4. The Giants announced Gettleman’s hiring on Thursday with a joint statement from team president John Mara and chairman Steve Tisch. Kevin Abrams is expected to remain with the Giants as assistant GM.
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