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If you’ve ever wanted to be the first to see the sun rise in the United States, pack a few extra layers, grab your camera, and set your GPS to Eastport, Maine.

You’ll also want to bring your appetite.

This quaint, coastal town is not only the last Eastern stop before reaching Canada, it is also home to some of the freshest seafood in the state.

Situated at the end of a working pier is Quoddy Bay Lobster, a family-owned fish market and takeout counter that has kept locals and visitors returning to their window for 12 years.

With outdoor seating under a permanent awning and various picnic tables shaded by umbrellas, the setting tickles your senses with all things Maine: the sight of lobster traps coming and going; the smell of a slightly salted breeze; the sound of gulls floating curiously above, and, of course, the tastes that make you slow down and close your eyes to savor every last bite.

“People come and sit on the rocks and watch the older gentlemen fishing and the children on the shore trying to jig up a mackerel,’’ said Shelly Griffin, who handles bookkeeping and other behind-the-scenes tasks, while also helping at the window during a rush.

Alongside Shelly is daughter-in-law Sara Griffin, who manages all other aspects of the operation. The men in the family spend their days on the water reeling in traps and making deliveries. In fact, Sara Griffin gets to see her husband on a regular basis, as he unloads lobster and crab from his boat onto the pier for Quoddy Bay’s menu items.

Ironically, from the moment Sara tried lobster on the first date with her now-husband, she didn’t like it. But as a marine biologist who married into a family of lobster fishermen, she found that the popular crustacean is a part of her passion and livelihood.

Over the Fourth of July alone, Quoddy Bay sells more than 1,200 pounds of lobster as the town of Eastport draws thousands to its annual Fourth of July parade. In election years like this one, the candidates for governor almost always come to walk in the parade.

Steph Sherburne, who lives almost two hours away, has been visiting Quoddy Bay for nearly 10 years and always gets the lobster roll, raving about the generous portions.

“I love that they are family owned and they’ve always treated me and my friends like family,’’ said Sherburne, who first visited the restaurant on a Fourth of July camping trip.

Lobster rolls are served in three sizes (junior, regular, and jumbo), with the choice of mayo, Miracle Whip, or drawn butter. The garnish? An entire lobster claw that rests atop a lightly toasted, golden-to-perfection, split-top hot dog roll. Each order comes with what this writer’s father calls the best coleslaw he’s ever had, along with a pickle and a bag of chips.

I was happy to hear of the butter option not just for the lobster roll, but also for the crabmeat roll. I’ve been daydreaming about having another one since I left Eastport.

According to Shelly, the haddock sandwich draws almost as much attention as the lobster rolls do. She notes that Quoddy Bay does not deep fry any of its seafood.

Should you have room for dessert, the younger members of the Griffin family can be seen scooping Gifford’s Ice Cream during the peak season. Also available: traditional Maine whoopie pies, which come individually wrapped so you can have a treat on the long ride home.

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Mail-order weed? You betcha!

With nationwide marijuana legalization in Canada on the horizon, the industry is shaping up differently there than the way it was established in nine U.S. states that have similarly broad legalization. Age limits, government involvement in distribution and sales, and access to banking are some big discrepancies.

And, yes, Canadians will be able to order cannabis online and have it delivered through the mail — something that’s illegal in the United States.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Wednesday that marijuana will be legal in Canada on Oct. 17. In the meantime, its provinces and cities are working out issues concerning regulations.

Here’s what to expect:

GOVERNMENT-RUN STORES

It’s up to the provinces and territories to determine how to handle distribution, and they’re taking a variety of approaches.

Ontario plans to open up to 150 stores run by its Liquor Control Board — a model of public ownership that is unusual in the U.S. No state owns marijuana retail outlets, though the tiny Washington state town of North Bonneville has one city-owned pot shop.

British Columbia is planning for a mix of public and privately owned stores, while Newfoundland and Saskatchewan will have only private pot shops. In some remote areas where stand-alone marijuana stores might not be economically feasible, including in the Northwest Territories, cannabis could be sold at existing liquor stores.

Just like U.S. states, the provinces also differ on home-growing, with many allowing up to four plants and others, including Quebec, barring it.

And rather than a minimum age of 21, as U.S. states have set to match the age for alcohol consumption, Canada’s federal minimum age to use marijuana will be 18. However, most provinces are opting for 19, which also is the drinking age in most places.

The varying approaches make the provinces something of a laboratory for other countries to determine the best ways to legalize, said Matt Gray, founder and chief executive of Herb, a Toronto-based news and social media platform for the pot industry.

PRICING AND TAXES

Whether run by the government or private entities, the stores in Canada will obtain their marijuana from federally licensed growers. The government also will set a minimum price.

Canada’s finance ministers have pegged it at about $10 per gram, but the Yukon minister in charge of marijuana says the government there hopes to displace more of the illegal market by setting the base price at $8.

The federal government wants to tax legal marijuana at either $1 per gram or one-tenth of a product’s price, whichever is greater, plus federal and provincial sales taxes. It’s likely to be less than the taxes imposed in states.

Washington state’s marijuana tax rate is 37 percent, plus state and local sales taxes. In California, licensed pot businesses are blaming total tax rates that can approach 50 percent for driving people back into the black market.

The Canadian government agreed to give provinces and territories 75 percent of the tax revenue.

BANKING

Canada’s cannabis businesses have a massive advantage over their American counterparts: access to banks.

Because the drug is still illegal under U.S. law, major banks have been loath to do business with the industry, even in legal marijuana states.

U.S. Treasury Department data show a slow increase in the number of banks and credit unions maintaining accounts for marijuana businesses, with 411 reporting such accounts last spring.

But many of those institutions don’t provide full-service banking, making it tough for businesses to get loans.

“The major Canadian banks were slow to warm to this,” said Chris Barry, a Seattle-based marijuana business attorney who handles industry transactions in both countries for the law firm Dorsey and Whitney.

He said smaller independent banks, investment banks and brokerage firms got the work started.

“That has pretty much dissolved as a problem,” Barry said. “The majors are coming around to participate in the market.”

THE PRODUCTS

Some Canadian consumers are disappointed that store shelves will only stock dried flower, oils and seeds when sales begin — no edibles. The government has said it needs about another year to develop regulations for edibles.

There’s also a labeling issue: Health Canada has dictated large warning labels on otherwise plain packages, with strict restrictions on font sizes, styles and colors. The idea is to discourage misuse and to avoid appealing to minors, but it also leaves little room for company logos or branding.

“It looks like each bag is housing radioactive waste,” said Chris Clay, owner of Warmland Cannabis Centre, a medical marijuana dispensary on Vancouver Island. “It’s a tiny logo with this huge warning label. It doesn’t leave much room for craft growers that want to differentiate themselves.”

And that, Clay said, is one of many things that will make it difficult for mom-and-pop growers to thrive. Giant cannabis companies have been entering deals to supply marijuana to the provinces.

While micro-producers are allowed, Clay is worried that by the time rules are released, “all the contracts are going to be scooped up.”

POT BY POST

While getting marijuana by mail may be a novel concept in the U.S., it’s nothing new in Canada. Its postal service, Canada Post, has been shipping medical marijuana to authorized patients since 2013.

“Many of our processes are in place today for medicinal cannabis and will continue for any regulated product sent through Canada Post from licensed distributors,” the agency said in a written statement.

Canada Post requires proof of age upon delivery and won’t leave the package unless someone is there to receive it.

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Associated Press writer Rob Gillies in Toronto contributed to this report.

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Johnson reported from Seattle. He is a member of AP’s marijuana beat team. Follow him at //twitter.com/GeneAPseattle . Find complete AP marijuana coverage here: //apnews.com/tag/LegalMarijuana .



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Before a stroke prevented him from driving, John Mudry, of New Jersey, would visit Atlantic City up to eight times a month.

Then he started taking the bus.

But on Tuesday, with his health rapidly declining due to terminal bladder cancer, it took a hospice bed, a case manager and an ambulance to get him back to his favorite place on earth, The Press of Atlantic City reported.

“I never thought it would happen,” Mudry, a 71-year-old retired truck driver, told the Asbury Park Press. “I thought it was a big joke.”

TEEN FACING CANCER RELAPSE RACING TO RAISE $350G FOR CRUCIAL BONE MARROW TRANSPLANT

Once doctors gave him six months to live, Mudry set out to make the most of the time he has left. His wish to sip a beer one last time at Bally’s while hanging at a blackjack table came true on Tuesday thanks to staff at Complete Care at Green Acres and his hospice case manager at Visiting Nurse Association Healthgroup.

Mudry’s hospice bed was placed next to a $10 blackjack table, and he drank his Coors Light while his niece looked on. He netted about $4,000, which he planned to give to his niece to help pay for her upcoming wedding, the Asbury Park Press reported.

Bally’s staff had asked if there was anything special Mudry wanted once he got to the casino, but he said he just wanted to be like any other gambler on the floor, the news outlet reported.

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QUINCY, Ill. (AP) – Dr. Duane “Dewey” Hanzel’s hobbies, from playing rugby to rodeo roping, have always reflected his station in life.

The Montana native got his nickname from his football teammates in high school. Sporting a long pony tail at the time, his friends took to calling him “Dewey” — a joking reference to the Dalai Lama. The ponytail has been gone for some time, and today, he is most recognizable in scrubs and a white coat.

Hanzel grew up in Kalispell, Mont., a mountain valley city of just over 20,000, near Glacier National Park. There, outdoor activities, especially skiing and anything else snow-related, were king.

“It was an outdoor paradise,” he said. “Anything you want to do outside, you can do there.”

Hanzel was into all of it — skiing, hunting, fishing, horseback riding, cycling — anything that took him outside. He refers to his various hobbies as “binges,” because he would become consumed with whatever drew his attention at the time.

“I rode bicycles, and then that became racing bicycles in criterion races,” he said. “That was more like Indy car driving, a lot of wrecks.”

Hanzel describes himself as the “kid that frustrated teachers” because, while he got good grades and graduated with distinction, he focused more on recreation than his studies.

The past-time that was most deeply ingrained in Hanzel’s heritage was rodeo. Several family members in his lineage had competed. He grew up riding horses, but it wasn’t until high school that he gave rodeo a shot.

“On weekends we would do green stock rodeos,” he said. “You’d pay to ride. It would be like five bucks a head.”

Hanzel went to college on an engineering scholarship, but a few years into his career, he realized he had made a mistake.

“I just didn’t like it,” he said. “After three years, I decided to go back and get my degree in biomedical science.”

While searching for a medical specialty, he happened to attend a podiatry conference. The mechanical workings of the lower extremities appealed to his engineering background, and he decided to focus on the feet.

He attended the University of Osteopathic Medicine and Health Sciences in Des Moines, Iowa — now Des Moines University — one of the only schools in the country to specialize in podiatry at that time.

All through medical school, his internship at Riverside Hospital and his residency at New Mexico Veterans Affairs Health Care System, Hanzel belonged to two professional rodeo associations — the National Rodeo Association (NRA) and International Professional Rodeo Association (IPRA).

“Once you get into it, it’s like anything else — kind of addicting,” he said of his rodeo days.

The first time he met Margaret — the woman he has now been married to for 25 years — during residency orientation, he entered the elevator she was riding on crutches from a rodeo injury. His preferences for more extreme activities have led to broken fingers and ribs; he has broken his nose on at least five occasions and received countless cuts and bruises.

Margaret liked horses, which gave the couple a common passion. When their son Lane and daughter Olivia were old enough, they too began riding and caring for the horses and traveling to rodeos on the weekends.

“It was a family deal,” he said. “It takes so much time that, if your family isn’t doing it with you, you just won’t see them. We weren’t going to do that.”

The family moved from Montana to Quincy in 2001. The weather on the early-February move kept the trip interesting. Constant snowstorms over the five-day trip dropped snow in front of the family’s path and just behind them, but they remained in a clear patch the entire time.

“We had four horses, three grown dogs, one puppy, two kids and two crew-cab pickups,” he said. “It was an adventure.”

Hanzel gave up the rodeo in residency, and he gave up roping once the kids grew older, preferring instead to focus on coaching his son’s baseball team. He is now the assistant coach, while his son coaches the same team on which he once played.

“I have zero desire to ride a horse now, and even less desire to get on something that is bucking, but I have no regrets of doing that. The things I’ve done all had their time, but I’m not lost without them, and they’re not my identity,” he said. “Everything I’ve done was always about taking advantage of where I was in life.”

Hanzel’s newest “binge” is golf, a pastime he took up two years ago. Since he came out of private practice to join Blessing Physician Services five years ago, his life has become more relaxed. That stress relief does not mean his life has slowed down any, though. He still sees 55 patients a day.

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Source: The Quincy Herald-Whig, //bit.ly/2HIOmDv

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Information from: The Quincy Herald-Whig, //www.whig.com

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

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(Reuters Health) – One in five parents don’t talk to their kids about safety issues at amusement parks, especially what to do if they get lost, according to a poll by the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

FILE PHOTO: A boy waits in line to get tickets for the rides at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines, Iowa, U.S., August 15, 2015. REUTERS/Jim Young/File Photo

More than 30,000 children are injured each year at amusement parks and carnivals in the U.S., according to the Mott Poll report.

“Parents can take certain actions that can help to keep their children safe,” said Dr. Gary Freed of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, who co-directs the poll.

“Parents should have a plan with their child about what to do,” Freed told Reuters Health by email. “Parents should make sure their child is properly restrained in any ride, and be aware of any improper actions on the part of ride operators.”

The national survey is based on responses from more than 1,200 parents with at least one child between ages 5 and 12 in early 2018. About 82 percent said their child had been to an amusement park or carnival in the past three years, and 85 percent had accompanied their child.

Nearly 90 percent of parents said their child had to stay with them or another adult at all times, and 6 percent had set check-in times to make contact, either in person or by phone. About 79 percent said they talked with their child about what to do if they got lost or separated.

When children board rides at amusement parks or carnivals, 87 percent of parents said it was the responsibility of both parents and ride operators to make sure kids are safe. About 94 percent would “definitely” report a ride operator to authorities if they suspected the operator was drunk or on drugs. At the same time, 69 percent would “definitely” report a ride operator for not enforcing safety rules such as seat belts or height requirements, and 48 percent would “definitely” report a ride operator for using a cell phone while operating the ride.

When it comes to alcohol and drug testing of ride operators, about 59 percent of parents said they preferred random testing, 13 percent said weekly testing and 3 percent said yearly testing. About 11 percent thought checks should be done only when ride operators were suspected of drug or alcohol use.

“The discussion about amusement park safety is especially relevant now, since it is summer and a popular time for families to take a trip to an amusement park,” said Connor Oehmke of the Southern Illinois University School of Law.

In April, Oehmke, who wasn’t involved with the poll, called for national legislation regarding amusement park safety in the Journal of Legal Medicine (bit.ly/2ttxqM6).

“Being a ride operator carries a significant amount of responsibility for ensuring the safety of children,” Oehmke said in an email. “In light of this heightened responsibility, I wrongly assumed that more parents would agree that random alcohol and drug testing should be required, since this seems like a reasonable safety precaution for this type of employment.”

Younger children should be under consistent supervision to ensure they meet height requirements and understand safety rules, such as keeping hands away from safety latches, the authors of the poll report advise. Although older children may want more freedom to roam an amusement park, it’s important to have a back-up plan, check-in time and instructions for what to do when they get lost, they add.

In particular, parents should know that training and supervision of ride operators vary by amusement park or carnival, the report authors write. Parents shouldn’t assume that ride operators have been drug tested recently, for instance.

“Different states impose different requirements for amusement park ride operators,” Oehmke said. “Therefore, some state regulations over amusement park safety are lenient, while other state regulations are more stringent. It all depends on what state you are in.”

SOURCE: bit.ly/2yvU2Bo Mott Poll Report, online June 18, 2018.

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A single binge drinking episode could permanently disturb the gene that regulates sleep, according to a new study published in the Journal of Neurochemistry.

Although previous studies have shown a link between alcohol and sleep quality, this is the first time a single episode of drinking was shown to have a significant effect on sleep.

“We were not expecting this. We thought it would be affected after multiple sessions of binge drinking, not one,” said Dr Mahesh Thakkar, lead author of the study.

“That tells you that as soon as you consume four drinks, it can alter your genes.”

These results came from a series of experiments conducted at the University of Missouri-Colombia involving mice, in which the animals were allowed to consume alcohol over a four hour period. Their sleep quality was then assessed. Binge drinking was shown to disturb their sleep by affecting the gene that regulates it. This meant that the mice that consumed alcohol were awake for longer periods and also seemed to lack the urge to sleep.

The study will now be repeated with human subjects to see if the same results can be replicated. As Dr Ivona Bialas, a senior lecturer at the Brighton and Sussex Medical School who was not involved in the study told Newsweek, “the results, if they can be replicated are astonishing. They highlight the huge impact that even small amounts of alcohol can have on sleep.”

“If even a single binge regulates genes via epigenetic effects we would have to look again at our safe alcohol limits advice with vulnerable people, for example, pregnant women, and young adults.”

While we’re on the topic, here’s what happens to your body when you binge drink. Also, 10 simple hacks for a good night’s sleep.

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Danny Daniels, an evangelical Christian in the rural Oklahoma town of Lindsay, is reliably conservative on just about every political issue.

The 45-year-old church pastor is anti-abortion, voted for President Donald Trump and is a member of the National Rifle Association who owns an AR-15 rifle. He also came of age during the 1980s and believed in the anti-drug mantra that labeled marijuana as a dangerous gateway drug.

But his view on marijuana changed as his pastoral work extended into hospice care and he saw patients at the end of their lives benefiting from the use of cannabis.

“Some people said I couldn’t be a pastor and support medical marijuana, but I would say most of the people I know, including the Christians I pastor, are in favor of it,” said Daniels, pastor of Better Life Community Church in downtown Lindsay, a rural agricultural and energy industry town about 50 miles (80.5 kilometers) south of Oklahoma City.

Daniels is among a growing group of traditionally conservative Republican voters in Oklahoma who have shifted their position on the topic. Their support for a medical marijuana measure on Tuesday’s ballot could ensure Oklahoma joins the growing list of states that have legalized some form of pot.

It’s the first medical marijuana state question on a ballot in 2018, and Oklahoma’s vote precedes elections on marijuana legalization later this year in Michigan and Utah. Michigan voters will decide whether to legalize recreational pot while Utah is considering medical marijuana.

Among the reddest states in the country, Oklahoma has for decades embraced a tough-on-crime philosophy that includes harsh penalties for drug crimes that has contributed to the state now leading the nation in the percentage of its population behind bars.

But voters’ attitudes are changing. Two years ago Oklahomans voted to make all drug possession crimes misdemeanors over the objection of law enforcement and prosecutors. When one GOP senator discussed adding exceptions after the public vote, he faced an angry mob at a town-hall meeting.

Oklahoma’s State Question 788, the result of an activist-led signature drive, would allow physicians to approve medical marijuana licenses for people to legally grow, keep and use cannabis. The proposal outlines no qualifying medical conditions to obtain a license, and an opposition group that includes law enforcement, business, political and faith leaders launched a late, half-million-dollar campaign to defeat it, saying it’s too loosely written.

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin, who typically defers from commenting on pending state questions, recently expressed reservations about the question, saying it’s so broadly worded it would essentially allow recreational use of marijuana. If approved, Fallin said she intends to call the Legislature back to a special session so that a statutory framework could be approved to further regulate sale and use.

Bill Shapard, a pollster, said support for medical marijuana has been consistently strong during the five years he’s surveyed likely Oklahoma voters. Not surprisingly, Shapard said young people, Democrats and independents overwhelmingly support it.

But he said about half of self-identified evangelicals, churchgoers and those over 65 also endorse medical cannabis.

“When you can get a large majority of the Democrats and independents and a third to a half of Republicans to support you, you can get anything passed in Oklahoma,” Shapard said.

Joanna Francisco, a longtime Republican voter and self-described evangelical, said the issue of medical cannabis “should appeal to everyone who calls themselves a pro-life conservative.”

“If you’re a conservative, you should also be opposed to the state spending exorbitant amounts of money on prosecutors and law enforcement to keep this medicine out of the hands of people who might need it,” said Francisco, 49, who holds regular Bible studies in her Tulsa home.

At Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 382 in El Reno, a conservative suburb 30 miles (48.3 kilometers) west of Oklahoma City, many of the regulars don’t like the idea of legalizing marijuana, even for medical reasons. But attitudes are changing, said 73-year-old Bill Elkins, a disabled Vietnam veteran who volunteers at the post.

“I’ve got mixed thoughts on that,” said Elkins, a Republican who said his daughter benefited from taking cannabidiol oil, a non-intoxicating form of cannabis, for nerve pain. “Right now I’m on the fence.”

Jack Hodgkinson, 71, a Vietnam veteran and supporter of Trump, said he doesn’t have a problem with the medical use of marijuana and plans to vote for it.

“I’ve never messed with any drugs, marijuana or anything like that,” Hodgkinson said. “But if it helps people who need it, I’m all for it.”

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Follow Sean Murphy at www.twitter.com/apseanmurphy



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At Shooters Grill, in Rifle, the award-winning barbecue comes with a gun on the side.

The restaurant’s waitstaff, while serving brisket and cornbread, wear holstered — and loaded — sidearms. The fact that both the food and the servers pack heat has made the eatery famous around the world, drawing diners from overseas and vacationers who drive in from Canada.

Rifle is on Interstate 70 between Glenwood Springs and Grand Junction on the Western Slope. The name of the Western-themed restaurant originally came from a play on the town’s name. Now, it has become a symbol for gun-rights advocates around the country.

Husband and wife owners Jason and Lauren Boebert opened Shooters in 2013 never intending to make a political statement.,

Lauren Boebert, owner of the Shooters ...

RJ Sangosti, The Denver Post

Lauren Boebert, owner of the Shooters Grill, has gained national attention for her decision to encourage her staff to carry a firearm during work. The restaurant was photographed May 29, 2018 in Rifle.

But after a man was beaten to death in a nearby alley, Lauren Boebert began openly carrying a gun to protect herself and her staff. Soon after, some of her waitstaff approached her about the possibility of also open-carrying their own firearms during their shifts.

With the waitstaff packing heat, the Western-themed restaurant took on new life.

Today, a sign welcoming firearms on the premises greets customers at the front door. Inside, copies of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution accompany the themed menu, which includes such plates as “Guac 9” and “Ballistic Chicken.”

Waitresses hustle past signs reading “This is NOT a gun-free zone” with their personal guns holstered on their hips, delivering food to customers who often open-carry themselves.

“We’ve become a voice for the Second Amendment, and it’s a voice I’m proud to have,” Boebert said. “There are so many voices darkening the Second Amendment, and I’m proud to be a part of those standing and taking their place and saying, ‘No, we rightfully own our firearms and we’re responsible with them.’ ”

Beginning with a small staff, Boebert initially did not offer or require any gun-safety training, asking only that servers — all of whom had concealed carry permits — keep their guns holstered at all times unless the situation dictates otherwise.

But as Shooters grew and became a more popular tourist destination, the Boeberts began partnering with Legal Heat, a national concealed-firearms training company, to provide an additional level of firearm safety instruction.

“Accidents happen by being careless or ignorant,” Lauren Boebert said. “Either people don’t know what they’re doing or they think they know everything.”

Legal Heat offers Shooters employees tactical and concealed-weapons training, along with weapon-retention tactics and target practice. In addition to monthly training and safety sessions, waitstaffers use and practice with holsters designed to prevent the gun from being removed from behind by a third party.

“I think all of us are really conscious that we’re wearing them,” said Jessie Spaulding, a Rifle local who has been working at Shooters since the beginning. “I know that this scares people. Some people don’t know if we’re just carrying accessories. It’s important for customers to know that we know how to handle them.”

Just over five years after opening its doors, Shooters caters to a combination of locals and tourists. For the locals, the Boeberts’ seemingly unusual business is nothing special.

“They’re indifferent,” said Lauren Boebert. “Our locals want good food, good service, you to know their names and smile when you say it. Their attitude is ‘I don’t care if you have a gun -– feed me.’ ”

Stan Rak, of Whitehouse Station, New ...

RJ Sangosti, The Denver Post

Stan Rak, of Whitehouse Station, New Jersey, looks at a photo he took of his waitress, Jessie Spaulding, at Shooters Grill on May 29, 2018 in Rifle. Rak, who is on vacation, took the photo, of the gun-packing waitress to send to a friend back home.

Tourists, on the other hand, travel thousands of miles to check out the restaurant. Boebert said she has served customers that have driven from Canada, as well as other international travelers who planned a layover in Denver — on their way West for vacation — to eat at her diner.

“My favorite thing,” she said, “is that something as silly as a firearm in a restaurant has opened up the entire world to us and given us an awesome way to meet people from all over the world.”

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It’s not surprising that the many people are up in arms about how much food we waste, and potatoes are part of the problem: about half of all potatoes bought by UK households are thrown away. That’s nearly 6m spuds a day, at a yearly cost of £230m.

My mum always made the best chips: skin-on, hand-cut, cooked once, and served doused in malt vinegar and ketchup. The skin adds flavour, colour and crispness. The same goes for roast potatoes: why peel them? It takes more time, plus the skin (and just below it) is where most of the nutrients are stored – in this case, bags of vitamin C, potassium and iron.

I make roasties by parboiling them whole, skin and all (scrub off any mud first, if need be), then crushing them a little so they break open and reveal their fluffy insides, before tossing in olive oil, plenty of salt and perhaps a herb or spice, and finishing in the oven for an hour at 190C/375F/gas 5. This gives you the best of both worlds: a crisp, floury crunch and earthy, flavourful skin.

But if you must peel spuds, perhaps because you like chips white and roasties golden yellow, then, for your wallet’s sake, cook them up – those peelings make the most marvellous crisps.

Potato peel crisps

Heat 3cm oil in a deep saucepan on a medium-high flame. Check the temperature by dropping in a ribbon of peel: it’s hot enough if it starts to bubble and rises to the surface. Drop in the peelings – in batches, if need be – give them a gentle stir and fry until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen towel. Sprinkle with salt while hot, and serve with a squeeze of lime and a sprinkle of chilli.

Tom Hunt is a chef, sustainability campaigner and founder of Poco Tapas Bar in Bristol

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