The top GOP candidates will meet at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, on Dec. 10 for a debate hosted by The Des Moines Register, ABC News, WOI-TV, Yahoo!, and the Republican Party. Fox News and the GOP will host another debate five days later in Sioux City, Iowa.
Taylor jewelry sale
Auction house Christie's will put up the late Elizabeth Taylor's jewelry for auction on Dec. 13. Experts say the actress, who died in March, assembled one of the greatest private collections of jewelry ever and estimate that the collection could fetch more than $30 million.
South Pole explored
A century ago on Dec. 14, Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen trekked to the South Pole, beating British explorer Robert Falcon Scott to the pole by just over a month. One hundred years later, enthusiasts are attempting to re-enact the journey by racing to the South Pole.
Drill, baby, drill!
The U.S. government plans to resume selling exploration leases in deep sea areas in the Gulf of Mexico on Dec. 14 after a moratorium that had been in effect since the Gulf oil spill during the summer of 2010. But prospectors aren't all pleased-the Obama administration has doubled the price for leases.
Analysts expect oil ministers from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to agree to cut production in efforts to keep oil above $100 per barrel when they meet Dec. 14 in Vienna, Austria. OPEC ministers may also have to deal with Libya, which could soon increase oil production after the end of its civil war.
Two hundred years ago on Dec. 19, the first of four massive earthquakes struck near present-day Missouri and Arkansas. The first trembler, estimated to be as powerful as 8.1 on the Richter scale, struck in Northeast Arkansas. Over the next two months, three major earthquakes shook the area, culminating in a Feb. 7, 1812 earthquake that destroyed New Madrid, Mo.