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Recreation areas in Eastern Washington close as wildfires spread

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources has closed all public lands it manages east of the Cascades due to high fire danger.



a close up of smoke


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“We had a historic fire event yesterday – 58 new wildfire starts and nine large fires on the landscape, compounded by hurricane-level winds,” Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz said. “That dangerous combination led to smoke-filled skies and low visibility, which grounded our aircraft and limited our ability to fight the fire from the air.”

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With high winds and hot, dry weather, the risk for wildfires is extremely dangerous. Those conditions make the fire unpredictable and make it challenging to control, DNR said. 

Gov. Jay Inslee said that as of Tuesday, 330,000 acres have burned across the state in just 24 hours. Inslee said that the amount of land burned in the last 24 hours is more than what the

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How close is Hong Kong to setting up travel bubbles? | In depth

Proposed travel bubbles have offered a ray of hope for restless Hong Kong denizens grounded for months in a densely populated city, but these have proven more complicated for the government to arrange than it initially seemed.

An annual jaunt to Taiwan or Japan is de rigueur for many Hong Kongers and the city’s expatriates often cite its status as a premier travel hub in Asia as one of the reasons to live here.

Parked-c-Mary416_Shutterstock

Hong Kong has been tackling its third wave of Covid-19 since July, but experts think the city could face a fourth wave in the autumn and winter, with disruptions to normal life persisting another six months to a year.

If that is the case, the chances for Hong Kongers to travel freely outside of the Special Administrative Region (SAR) this year seems slim. However, at a press conference earlier this week on 7 September, the city’s

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Campers Told To Pack Up As National Forests Close Recreation Ahead Of Fire Weather

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Campers Told To Pack Up As National Forests Close Recreation Ahead Of Fire WeatherAmid a Red Flag Warning and grave fire conditions, the U.S. Forest Service has taken unprecedented steps to prevent disaster.

Sacramento, Stockton,

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The Conversation: Religious tourism has been hit hard in the pandemic as sites close and pilgrimages are put on hold

Religious tourism is among the oldest forms of planned travel and to this day remains a huge industry.

About 300 million to 330 million tourists visit the world’s key religious sites every year, according to a 2017 estimate. Some 600 million national and international religious trips are made around the world, generating around $18 billion (U.S.) in global revenues. It makes up a sizable chunk of an overall tourism sector that has been significantly affected by the spread of the coronavirus, with 63.8% of travelers reducing their travel plans as a result.

As COVID-19 evolved to become a global pandemic, governments across the globe closed sacred sites and temporarily banned religious travel.

It has affected popular destinations of all faiths. Jerusalem, Vatican City and Mecca — which attract millions of Jewish, Christian and Muslim visitors annually — are among the worst affected.

Likewise, Buddhist sites such as Nepal’s Lumbini Temple

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Hilton Hotel in Times Square Is Set to Close

The Hilton Times Square is set to become one of the most prominent Manhattan hotels to shut down on a long-term basis amid the coronavirus pandemic.

In a Monday public filing with the New York State Department of Labor, the company in control of the 478-room hotel announced the “permanent closing” of the property and said it would cut 200 jobs, effective in October.

A spokesman for

Sunstone Hotel Investors Inc.,

which controls the hotel, said in an email the company made the filing to indicate that layoffs might last longer than six months. He said the filing “was not intended to imply that there is a permanent closure.” He added that a “definitive reopening date has not been determined or established and will be impacted by negotiations with our lender, as well as market conditions.”

The hotel, which is a franchised property under the

Hilton Hotels & Resorts

brand,

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Religious tourism has been hit hard in the pandemic as sites close and pilgrimages are put on hold

<span class=Only a handful of tourists at the usually busy St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican. Vincenzo Pinto/AFP via Getty Images” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/aSCjF5xVb8lgRkdWWW95iQ–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTcwNTtoPTQ2OS4wMjA4MzMzMzMzMzMz/https://s.yimg.com/uu/api/res/1.2/jxNA_tHM67BTS6zaHBIs_g–~B/aD05NTg7dz0xNDQwO3NtPTE7YXBwaWQ9eXRhY2h5b24-/https://media.zenfs.com/en/the_conversation_us_articles_815/4edd35aab544232001530b12b7f58aef” data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/aSCjF5xVb8lgRkdWWW95iQ–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTcwNTtoPTQ2OS4wMjA4MzMzMzMzMzMz/https://s.yimg.com/uu/api/res/1.2/jxNA_tHM67BTS6zaHBIs_g–~B/aD05NTg7dz0xNDQwO3NtPTE7YXBwaWQ9eXRhY2h5b24-/https://media.zenfs.com/en/the_conversation_us_articles_815/4edd35aab544232001530b12b7f58aef”/
Only a handful of tourists at the usually busy St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican. Vincenzo Pinto/AFP via Getty Images

Religious tourism is among the oldest forms of planned travel and to this day remains a huge industry.

About 300 to 330 million tourists visit the world’s key religious sites every year, according to a 2017 estimate. Some 600 million national and international religious trips are made around the world, generating around US$18 billion in global revenues. It makes up a sizeable chunk of an overall tourism sector that has been significantly affected by the spread of the coroanvirus, with 63.8% of travelers reducing their travel plans as a result.

A concern of all faiths

As COVID-19 evolved to become a global pandemic, governments across the globe

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