NBA season opens
The Miami Heat, the NBA’s reigning champions, will kick off the professional basketball season on Oct. 30 when they play host to the Boston Celtics. The return of basketball from its summer hiatus is good news for arena employees and vendors in the eight U.S. cities where NHL and NBA teams share arenas. The NHL’s prolonged lockout has resulted in lost wages and revenue for people who depend on games for business.
According to a survey by the National Retail Federation, Americans are spending about $2.87 billion on Halloween costumes in 2012, including $370 million on pet costumes. When the costs of candy and décor for the Oct. 31 holiday are added, American spending on Halloween 2012 is likely to exceed $8 billion.
Beginning Nov. 1, all French vehicles must be equipped with a breathalyzer tied into the car’s ignition system. France passed the law on July 1 with the hopes that requiring drivers to blow into a tube that checks for alcohol content will reduce the number of auto accidents. Motorists who haven’t installed the device will face a $13 fine for first-time offenses.
Atlantis resting place
The Space Shuttle Atlantis will move for likely the final time when NASA crews tow it into a 90,000-square-foot exhibit building at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex at Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Nov. 3. With the retirement of the shuttle program, all the remaining shuttles are headed for museums. Once Atlantis arrives at its final resting place inside the 115-foot-tall building, construction crews will create the final wall of the exhibit building.
Ask a pollster who will win an election and he will respond with another question, “Tell me who votes?” For supporters of President Barack Obama and challenger Mitt Romney, that question has become one of the most vexing of the 2012 presidential election. Both sides are banking on enthusiastic turnout to carry them over the top on Nov. 6, with Democrats hoping the partisan breakdown resembles 2008 and Republicans hoping to duplicate their advantage from 2010.