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Watermelon Festival: The Winterville Watermelon Festival will be held Aug. 25-28 at Winterville Recreation Park Amphitheatre, 332 Sylvania St. The event will include food, entertainment, carnival rides, contests and vendors. The Watermelon Jam, featuring Jameson Rodgers, with opening performances by Cooper Greer and Kylie Morgan, will be held from 6-11 p.m. Aug. 27. Concert tickets are $15-$25. Visit watermelonfestival.com.

WASHINGTON — Falling prices for gas, airline tickets and clothes gave Americans a little bit of relief last month, though overall inflation is still running at close to its highest level in four decades.


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The Pitt County Girls Softball League All-Stars saw their journey at the Little League Softball World Series come to a dramatic end Saturday night against Virginia in front of a packed house at Stallings Stadium at Elm Street Park.

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Close games often come down to who makes the first mistake, and Friday afternoon’s matchup between Pitt County and California at the Little League Softball World Series was no different.

Successfully navigating the field of teams in the Little League Softball World Series means being versatile and having great reaction time.

The third day of action at the Little League Softball World Series brought with it eliminations, as the representatives from Washington and Italy were excused and Canada was on the ropes in the late game.

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State AP Stories

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Police in eastern North Carolina say two customers at a two fast-food restaurant died when a vehicle crashed into the building. It happened Sunday morning at a Hardee's in Wilson, which is about 40 miles east of Raleigh. The sport utility vehicle struck 58-year-old Christopher Ruffin and 62-year-old Clay Ruffin, both of Wilson. One died at the scene, while the other died at a Greenville hospital. Police identified the driver as 78-year-old Jesse Lawrence of Wilson. He was treated at a hospital and released. Police say they don't believe the crash to be medical- or impairment-related, and no charges had been announced late Sunday afternoon.

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Authorities in North Carolina are trying to determine who fired the shots that killed a sheriff's deputy along a dark highway late Thursday night. Wake County Sheriff Gerald Baker said early Friday that the deputy was fatally wounded after 11 p.m. Thursday. Sheriff’s spokesperson Eric Curry says it happened on a dark section of road adjacent to open land about a quarter mile from a gas station. He says they're trying to learn why the deputy stopped there as they search for “the perpetrator or perpetrators.” Several sheriff’s deputies have been shot recently in North Carolina, including Wayne County Sheriff's Sgt. Matthew Fishman, who was killed last week.

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The campaign committee of North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein plans to ask a federal court to block enforcement of a state law looming in a probe of a TV ad aired against Stein's election rival in 2020. The state law makes it illegal to knowingly circulate false reports to damage a candidate’s election chances. Stein beat Republican Jim O'Neill that November. A Stein committee attorney filed the notice Wednesday, after a judge refused to stop a district attorney from potentially using the law to prosecute anyone over the disputed 2020 campaign ad. No one's been charged. Stein's committee argues the law is overly broad and chills political speech.

The North Carolina attorney general’s office is asking a federal court not to restore the state's 20-week abortion ban after the judge suggested his previous injunction “may now be contrary to law.” The attorney general’s office argued in a brief filed late Monday that reinstating restrictions in the aftermath of the June U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade would create “significant risk of public confusion” about the availability and legality of abortion services in North Carolina. Staff attorneys in Stein’s office filed the brief without the attorney general’s involvement.

National & World AP Stories

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A fire ripped through a packed Coptic Orthodox church during morning services in Egypt’s capital, killing 41 worshippers, including at least 15 children, and injuring 16 others. The church quickly filled with thick black smoke Sunday, and witnesses said several trapped congregants jumped from upper floors to escape. The cause of the blaze in the Martyr Abu Sefein church in the working-class neighborhood of Imbaba was not immediately known. An initial investigation pointed to an electrical short-circuit, according to a police statement. Footage from the scene circulated online showed burned furniture, including wooden tables and chairs. Firefighters were seen putting out the blaze while others carried victims to ambulances.

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Pennsylvania state police say a man drove into a crowd at a fundraiser for victims of a recent deadly house fire. One person was killed and 17 others were injured Saturday. He then returned home and beat his mother to death. Police said 24-year-old Adrian Oswaldo Sura Reyes was arraigned early Sunday on two counts of criminal homicide. They allege that he told them he was upset about an argument with his mother, saw the crowd in Berwick and drove through it. Court documents don't list an attorney for him. State police say Sura Reyes is not currently a suspect in the fire, which killed seven adults and three children.

One of the last remaining Navajo Code Talkers says Sunday that the code based on his then-unwritten native language was the hardest thing to learn. Thomas H. Begay spoke at a Phoenix ceremony marking the 80th anniversary of the elite World War II group and its code that confounded Japanese military cryptologists. Hundreds of Navajos were recruited by the U.S. Marines to serve as code talkers during the war. The 98-year-old Begay is one of three who is still alive to talk about it. The Code Talkers participated in all assaults the Marines led in the Pacific from 1942 to 1945 including Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Peleliu and Iwo Jima.

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Police in eastern North Carolina say two customers at a two fast-food restaurant died when a vehicle crashed into the building. It happened Sunday morning at a Hardee's in Wilson, which is about 40 miles east of Raleigh. The sport utility vehicle struck 58-year-old Christopher Ruffin and 62-year-old Clay Ruffin, both of Wilson. One died at the scene, while the other died at a Greenville hospital. Police identified the driver as 78-year-old Jesse Lawrence of Wilson. He was treated at a hospital and released. Police say they don't believe the crash to be medical- or impairment-related, and no charges had been announced late Sunday afternoon.

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Germany’s environment minister says the mass die-off of fish in the Oder River is an ecological catastrophe and it's not clear yet how long it will take the river to recover. Steffi Lemke spoke Sunday at a news conference alongside her Polish counterpart, Anna Moskwa. Moskwa said the cause of the mass die-off of fish has not yet been determined. The meeting took place in Szczecin, a Polish city on the Oder River. Both ministers said they were focused now on doing what they can do limit the damage. Ten tons of dead fish were removed last week from the Oder, which runs along the border between Poland and Germany before flowing into the Baltic Sea.

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Mexico's president has begun exploring plans to sidestep congress to hand formal control of the National Guard to the army. That could extend the military’s control over policing in a country with high levels of violence. The idea has raised hackles, because President Andrés Manuel López Obrador won approval for creating the force in 2019 by pledging in the constitution that it would be under nominal civilian control. Part of that constitutional amendment also stipulated the military would have to exit policing roles by 2024. But now López Obrador wants to keep soldiers in the streets longer. He no longer has the votes in congress to amend the constitution, so he says he may do it as a regulatory change.

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Israeli police and medics say a Palestinian gunman opened fire at a bus near Jerusalem’s Old City, wounding eight Israelis. It came a week after violence flared up between Israel and militants in Gaza. Two of the victims were in serious condition after the attack early Sunday. The shooting took place as the bus waited in a parking lot near David’s Tomb on Mount Zion, just outside the Old City walls. The attack in Jerusalem follows a tense week between Israel and the Palestinians, including three days of fighting in Gaza after Israel killed Islamic Jihad commanders there and the killing of three Palestinian militants in the occupied West Bank.

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Salman Rushdie's agent says the author is “on the road to recovery” two days after suffering serious injuries in a stabbing at a lecture in upstate New York. The announcement followed news that the lauded writer was removed from a ventilator Saturday and able to talk and joke. Andrew Wylie continued to caution that although Rushdie’s “condition is headed in the right direction,” his recovery would be a long process. The 75-year-old suffered a damaged liver and severed nerves in an arm and an eye, Wylie had previously said, and was likely to lose the injured eye. Twenty-four-year-old Hadi Matar pleaded not guilty in the attack.