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POSTED August 30, 2012 9:42 p.m.

98-YEAR-OLD MESSAGE IN BOTTLE SETS WORLD RECORD: LONDON (AP) — It was scooped up from the sea after 98 years, and now officials say a message in a bottle discovered in Scotland has set a world record.

Fisherman Andrew Leaper found the bottle— released in 1914 — in his nets in April while sailing east of the Shetland Islands, which lie off Scotland's northern coast.

Guinness World Records confirmed Thursday the find is the oldest message in a bottle ever recovered, beating a previous record by five years.

It was released in a batch of 1,890 bottles in a government experiment to map the undercurrents of the seas around Scotland.

Inside each bottle, a postcard asks the finder to record details of the discovery and promises a reward of a sixpence. Unfortunately for Leaper, the coin no longer exists.

Vt. man accused of crushing police cars released

NEWPORT CITY, Vt. (AP) — A man charged with driving a tractor over seven police vehicles and crushing them has been released from a Vermont correctional facility.

Roger Pion left the Northern State Correctional Facility on Thursday with a smile on his face.

Pion is accused of destroying vehicles parked outside the Orleans County Sheriff's Department in Derby with his dad's tractor on Aug. 2 and then driving it toward downtown Newport before police stopped him. Authorities say he had been angry over a previous arrest for marijuana possession.

Pion received support from people worldwide after his arrest. Some contributed money to help cover his $50,000 bail. But after making bail he remained in prison over an earlier case.

NEW LIFE FOR DECADES-OLD WIS. CHEDDAR BLOCKS: MILWAUKEE (AP) — A recently discovered block of eastern Wisconsin cheddar cheese that dates back to the Nixon presidency will be sold for $10 per ounce.

Edward Zahn, 73, was in Z's Cheese Shoppe's walk-in cooler last month, preparing to shut down his Oconto store. He pushed aside stacks of cheese to reveal several wooden boxes that had been overlooked for years.

Inside were blocks of unintentionally aged cheddar — 28, 34 and 40 years old — that, some experts say, might comprise the oldest collection of cheese ever assembled and sold to the public.

"It just got overlooked," Zahn told the Wisconsin State Journal of the 40-year-old cheese. "It looks just like the others except it's just a lot sharper. It's got character."

MAN PLANS 8,500-MILE BIKE RIDE TO 'FATTEST' CITIES: LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A central Michigan man who shed about 130 pounds over the past year by riding a bike is gearing up for an 8,500-mile ride to visit U.S. cities that are battling obesity problems.

Jerry Smith plans to leave Sunday from Trinity Church in Lansing. He'll be joined by another rider and followed by a driver carrying supplies. They'll head to Detroit and Chicago first, then visit the fattest cities on the Men's Fitness magazine "Fittest and Fattest Cities in America" list.

Smith said he weighed 400 pounds a year ago, and he decided he wanted to do something to raise awareness about problems of youth obesity.

 

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