Samba, reflections and pride in final Rio Olympics party
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Shaking to samba and sharing reflections in uniquely Brazilian ways, Olympians and fans said goodbye to the Rio Games with one last big bash that was both revelatory and a sigh of relief.
The Rio Games, the first in South America, were a 16-day spectacle that combined numerous highlight reel moments with ugly and even bizarre episodes that sometimes overshadowed the competitions. And Rio residents, known as Cariocas, were not about to let sporadic rains and strong wind gusts get in the way of a final hurrah.
“These were marvelous Olympic Games in the ‘marvelous city,'” said International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, playing off the “cidade maravilhosa” nickname of Brazil’s postcard city of inviting coastlines, year-round sun and lush tropical vegetation.
While the stadium erupted in applause at that designation, a few minutes later there were boos of sadness when he announced: “I declare the Games of the XXXI Olympiad closed.”
The closing ceremony in iconic Maracana Stadium was also meant to take care of some business — formally signaling the transition to the 2020 Summer Olympics in Japan.
After Rio, Olympics headed for Asian venues seen as safe
BEIJING (AP) — For the Olympics, it’s so-long Rio, hello Asia.
The next three Olympics are headed for relatively calmer ports of call in South Korea, Japan and China following the organizational drama surrounding the 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia and the just completed Summer Games in Brazil, although challenges remain, especially when it comes to finances and generating enthusiasm among home audiences. A look ahead to the 2018 Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics and the 2022 Beijing Winter Games. All three countries have hosted the Olympics before and enjoy a shared reputation for prosperity and a deft hand at organizing major events.
PYEONGCHANG 2018: SLEEPY SKI RESORT FACES QUESTIONS OVER COSTS AND A LACK OF BUZZ
Pyeongchang, a sleepy ski resort town on South Korea’s mountainous east, is the smallest of the Asian hosts, and hopes to use the 2018 Winter Games to position itself as a major Asian winter sports destination.
10 Things to Know for Monday
Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Monday:
1. RIO THROWS FINAL PARTY TO SAY GOODBYE TO 2016 OLYMPICS
Rio de Janeiro and the world bid farewell to the first Olympic Games in South America with one last bash that also signals the transition to the 2020 Games in Japan.
2. YOUNG SUICIDE BOMBER KILLS 51 AT WEDDING IN TURKEY
The bombing in Gaziantep, which Turkey’s president says the Islamic State terror group carried out, was the deadliest attack in Turkey this year.
Obama eyes busy fall after return from summer vacation
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama returned from vacation Sunday, ready for a busy fall season and more battles with Congress over Zika funding, the federal budget and $400 million the administration paid Iran this year for the never-completed sale of military equipment.
Obama is also expected to campaign doggedly throughout October to help elect Democrat Hillary Clinton as president.
A theoretically rested president returned to the White House after a 16-day getaway to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, with his wife, Michelle, daughters Malia and Sasha, and their dogs. He played 10 rounds of golf and went out to dinner eight times.
Throughout Sunday, scores of residents lined roads to watch and wave as the motorcade crisscrossed the island on the last day of Obama’s final vacation there as president. Signs posted around the island’s various towns thanked the family for coming.
Obama will be at the White House for about a day before hitting the road again Tuesday to survey damage from heavy flooding in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, that killed at least 13 people and displaced thousands more.
North Carolina a snapshot of Trump’s shrinking trade appeal
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Hillary Clinton “owes the state of North Carolina a very big apology,” Donald Trump thundered, condemning the loss of manufacturing jobs due to free-trade deals supported by the Democratic presidential nominee.
The attack line drew no more than polite applause at his event last week in Charlotte.
In the state that may be the most pivotal to Trump’s White House bid, the audience for the Republican’s chief economic pitch is shrinking by the day. Textile and furniture manufacturing no longer dominates the state’s economy as it did a generation ago. Banking, technology and others industries have driven North Carolina’s economic output to grow faster than any state in the past three years.
Voters are flowing into the state at a firehose rate — young, educated and many to take high-paying jobs when they arrive. They’re coming from everywhere and quickly diluting North Carolina’s conservative political underpinnings.
“Clinton is winning,” said North Carolina Republican pollster Michael Luethy. “Particularly because folks who have moved to the state in the last five years are very different voters. They’re persuaded by a different issue set than those have been here a while.”
Campaign, party officials insist Trump getting back on track
WASHINGTON (AP) — After a tumultuous stretch of gaffes and falling poll numbers for Donald Trump, top GOP campaign and party officials insisted Sunday that their presidential nominee is getting back on track and will catch up with Democrat Hillary Clinton by around Labor Day.
Clinton campaign officials dismissed the idea of a changed Trump as nonsense.
“Donald Trump has been disciplined and mature. And I think he’s going to get this thing back on track,” said Reince Priebus, the Republican National Committee chairman.
Polls now mostly show Trump lagging Clinton by 5 percentage points or more nationally, but Priebus predicted they will tighten up and Trump will be “ahead as we move through September.”
Trump’s new campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, echoed Priebus’ optimism, contending that the candidate just had the best week of his campaign, “mostly because he’s able to be himself, the authentic Donald Trump” and “the pivot that he’s made is on substance.”
Young suicide bomber attacks Turkish wedding party; 51 die
ISTANBUL (AP) — A child suicide bomber killed at least 51 people and wounded nearly 70 others at a Kurdish wedding party near Turkey’s border with Syria, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Sunday, decrying the attack as an apparent attempt by Islamic State extremists to destabilize the nation by exploiting ethnic and religious tensions.
“As of now, the preliminary conclusions by our governor’s office and the police establishment point to an attack by Daesh,” Erdogan said, using another common term for IS.
“It was clear that Daesh had such an organization in Gaziantep or was attempting to make room for itself in recent times,” he said.
The bombing late Saturday in Gaziantep was the deadliest attack in Turkey this year.
It comes amid ongoing struggles between the government and Kurdish militants linked to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, known as the PKK, and as the country is still reeling from the aftermath of last month’s failed coup attempt, which the government has blamed on U.S.-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen and his followers.
Rural church among those providing aid after Louisiana flood
WALKER, La. (AP) — Outside the small town of Walker, Louisiana, a rural Baptist church has become an oasis for flood victims.
As waters rose amid torrential rains earlier this month, National Guard rescue crews dropped people off at South Walker Baptist Church because it sits on a ridge of relatively high ground in Livingston Parish near Baton Rouge. Even as flooding has receded in recent days, the church — like many other places across hard-hit south Louisiana — has continued providing sustenance for the body and soul.
It sheltered 96 people in the days after the storm, and Pastor Mark Carroll said the sanctuary is still a dormitory for more than 20 who lost their homes, including a man who had been living in his car until Saturday. It is also housing volunteers who have come to help people rebuild.
With a congregation of about 100 and with help from the community, the church is offering hot meals, running a pantry stocked by donations from around the U.S. and conducting prayer services. Carroll said the church had been planning a revival in about a month, but he believes the storm recovery is making that happen now as people build relationships with each other through God.
“It’s been this entire community,” Carroll said by phone Sunday. “We couldn’t have done anything without everyone, and I mean just about everyone, pitching in.”
Kenya’s Kipchoge wins gold in marathon, 1 color he’d lacked
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya smiled as he crossed the finish line and later directed cheering fans from the podium. The one color of Olympic medal he lacked in his illustrious career finally is his.
Kipchoge grabbed the lead in the marathon Sunday around the 21-mile (35 kilometer) mark and finished off his first Olympic victory in this event in a time of 2 hours, 8 minutes and 44 seconds.
“I’ve won my Olympic gold medal,” Kipchoge said. “It was the Olympic gold medal that’s not (around) my neck.”
Kipchoge’s golden moment came was overshadowed by the silver medalist, Feyisa Lilesa, taking his opportunity to support protests back in his native Ethiopia. He crossed his wrists at the finish line, during the gift ceremony and again during the news conference in the symbol for the anti-government protests in Ethiopia
The nation has been marred by violence in recent weeks as government security forces have killed dozens of people amid protests over the nation’s decision to take over lands in the Oromia region. Protesters are calling for more freedom and an end of government brutality.
US men grab hoops gold again on Rio’s final day
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — The Brazilians closed out the Rio Games in style Sunday. So did the U.S. men’s basketball team.
Kevin Durant scored 30 points and helped the Americans rout Serbia 96-66 for their third straight gold medal. That capped an Olympics in which the U.S. dominated the medal tables, both the gold (46) and overall totals (121).
Their 51-medal margin over second-place China is the largest in a non-boycotted Olympics in nearly a century.
“This experience has been the dream of a lifetime for me,” said U.S. gymnast and closing ceremony flagbearer Simone Biles, who won five medals, four of them gold, in her first Olympics.
After a few close calls in Rio de Janeiro, including a 94-91 win over Serbia in pool play, the U.S. sent Mike Krzyzewski out with a third gold medal. Carmelo Anthony’s third gold made him the most decorated male in Olympic basketball history.