The United Kingdom and many Commonwealth countries typically celebrate Boxing Day every December 26. The tradition of giving servants and tradespeople a "Christmas box" of food and gifts from their employers dates back to the Middle Ages.
In South Africa, the holiday was officially renamed the Day of Goodwill in 1994. But in other European countries, December 26 is celebrated as "Second Christmas Day" - an entirely different holiday.
An across-the-board pay hike for state troopers is among several new state laws that take effect Jan. 1.
Although most new laws take effect on Nov. 1 or shortly after the governor's signature, about a dozen measures have an effective date that coincides with the calendar year.
The pay raises for troopers will average between 14 and 20 percent and cost the state about $8.5 million when fully annualized. A starting trooper who currently makes about $38,000 will see his or her pay boosted to more than $43,000 under the bill.
Two earthquakes have rattled parts of central Oklahoma.
The U.S. Geological Survey says a magnitude 3.8 earthquake struck in Logan County at about 2.30 p.m. on Christmas Day about three miles south of Guthrie and 30 miles north of Oklahoma City.
Less than three hours later, a 3.7 magnitude earthquake struck about 15 miles east-northeast of Perry in Noble County, about 60 miles north of Oklahoma City. The survey says the quake was recorded at 5:11 p.m.
Authorities say no injuries or damage has been reported following the temblor.
On Christmas Day in 1989, photographer Paula Allen took a 26-hour bus ride to the remote city of Calama in northern Chile, and walked into one of the most hostile deserts on Earth. The half-dozen women she traveled with spread hundreds of red carnations across the floor of the Atacama Desert to honor 26 men likely buried beneath the sand.
Originally published on Wed December 24, 2014 12:40 pm
Sony Pictures' The Interview, the comedy that centers on a plot to assassinate North Korea's leader, will be shown on streaming services starting today, the studio said in a statement.
Starting at 10 a.m. PST, the comedy starring Seth Rogen and James Franco will be available to rent in HD on Google Play, YouTube Movies, Microsoft's Xbox Video and a dedicated website at a price of $5.99. The film can also be bought in HD for $14.99, the statement said.
A 5 million-pound dome placed atop the Oklahoma Capitol 12 years ago already is exhibiting cracking in its exterior cast stone panels, but building officials say there are no structural problems or evidence of weakness in the dome's supports.
According to an engineering report on the building's exterior, about 10 percent of the cast stone units on the dome's exterior show signs of cracking. Most of the cracks occur at the base of the dome.
Oklahoma lawmakers could bring home a smaller paycheck, work less and even see their numbers cut by a third under a few of the measures that have been filed ahead of the 2015 legislative session.
Nearly 70 measures have been filed so far in the Senate, with another handful in the House, but already legislators are coming up with some quirky and unusual ideas.
Republican Sen. Patrick Anderson of Enid has introduced a measure that would allow the people of Oklahoma decide whether to abolish the Senate altogether and change the Legislature to a single, 101-member body.
Originally published on Wed December 24, 2014 11:28 am
With the spread of Christianity among some Native Americans in the early 20th century came certain Christmas rituals — trees and presents and jolly old Santa Claus — that were folded into traditional wintertime celebrations.
A report from the U.S. Census Bureau says Oklahoma's population has grown slightly, but is trailing the national rate.
Oklahoma added nearly 25,000 residents between 2013 and the middle of 2014. The growth rate of 0.6 percent is behind the national rate of 0.7 percent and well behind that in Texas, where growth was 1.7 percent.
The Tulsa World reported Wednesday that Oklahoma grew at a faster pace than neighboring Arkansas, Kansas and Missouri, which grew at a rate of 0.3 percent.