HOUSTON (AP) - He usually has black hair and a black beard, sometimes just a mustache. Like Santa, he wears a hat - though often it's a sombrero. He dons a serape or a poncho and, in one case, a red and black zoot suit. And he makes his grand entrance on lowriders or Harleys or led by a pack of burros instead of eight reindeer.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) - A federal judge said he doesn't think the University of Notre Dame will succeed in its challenge to a federal health care law requirement that it provide students and employee health plans that cover birth control.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Towering grain silos overlook the main highway in Salt Lake City at the Mormon church's Welfare Square. At grocery stores, there's a whole section with large plastic tubs with labels that read, "Deluxe survivor 700." Radio ads hawk long-term supplies of food with 25-year shelf lives.
CHICAGO (AP) - As a key enrollment deadline hits Monday, many people without health insurance have been sizing up policies on the new government health care marketplace and making what seems like a logical choice: They're picking the cheapest one.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - The threat of another commute-crippling transportation strike in the San Francisco Bay area receded on Saturday when officials for the region's transit rail system and negotiators for its two largest labor unions said they had resolved the latest sticking point in their months-long negotiations and reached a new contract.
HOUSTON (AP) - It's become a place where you can eat, drink and be merry - but also give to charity.
WEST MONROE, La. (AP) - "Faith. Family. Ducks." It's the unofficial motto for the family featured in the TV reality show Duck Dynasty and that homespun philosophy permeates nearly everything in this small north Louisiana town.
AUBURN, Maine (AP) - For 3 ½ years, a black stone urn of C.J. Twomey's ashes has sat on a shelf in his parents' Maine home, not far from the door he walked out of one beautiful April day shortly before shooting himself.
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. (AP) - A Lake Tahoe couple filed a police report saying they received numerous death threats and harassing messages after reporting problems with a black bear that was captured and euthanized by Nevada wildlife officials.
NEW YORK (AP) - A man and his 3-year-old son plummeted to their deaths from a Manhattan apartment building, police said Sunday as they investigated what led to the tragedy.
CHICAGO (AP) - The detached dad, turning up his nose at diapering and too busy to bathe, dress and play with his kids, is mostly a myth, a big government survey suggests. Most American fathers say they are heavily involved in hands-on parenting, the researchers found.
SEATTLE (AP) - Students at a Seattle-area Catholic school are gaining national attention for their protest over the forced departure of a gay vice principal.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Sixty-three years after Army Sgt. 1st Class Joseph E. Gantt went missing in action during the Korean War, his remains were returned to his 94-year-old widow in a solemn ceremony at Los Angeles International Airport before dawn Friday.
TRINIDAD, Colo. (AP) - Police in southern Colorado say they thwarted a school shooting plot by two teenagers, one of whom idolized mass shooters, just a week after a student opened fire in the halls of a suburban Denver high school.
NEW YORK (AP) - Years after being exiled to New York City's sidewalks by a ban on smoking in indoor public places, some smokers relished electronic cigarettes as a way to come in from the cold.
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - The U.S. Coast Guard says a plane carrying nine people has been discovered on a cliff-side in southeast Alaska after it was reported missing Thursday afternoon.
NEW YORK (AP) - McDonald's says fewer people are picking soda for Happy Meals after it stopped listing the drinks as an option on its menu boards.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The State Department cannot find in its records all or part of 15 work-related emails from Hillary Rodham Clinton's private server that were released this week by a House panel investigating the 2012 attack in Benghazi, Libya, officials said Thursday.
DETROIT (AP) - The driver of a Chevy Camaro being pursued by police pushed the muscle car's average speed to 95 mph in a Detroit neighborhood where children were playing before striking and killing two and injuring several others, the city's police chief said.
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - A Pennsylvania state court on Thursday struck down a law designed to make it easier for gun owners and organizations like the National Rifle Association to challenge local firearms ordinances in court.
CENTENNIAL, Colo. (AP) - Attorneys for Colorado theater shooter James Holmes began presenting their case Thursday by calling a psychiatrist who said Holmes was so psychotic that he could not tell right from wrong when he killed 12 people during a packed movie premiere.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Patrick Macnee, the British-born actor best known as dapper secret agent John Steed in the long-running 1960s TV series "The Avengers," has died. He was 93.
MARKLEEVILLE (AP) - A wildfire has grown to 26 square miles in hazardous and inaccessible terrain south of Lake Tahoe and is moving closer to structures, officials said.
INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. (AP) - The governors of 10 Western states are meeting in Lake Tahoe to tackle a problem that doesn't respect state boundaries - drought.
LAS VEGAS (AP) - Nevada's casino regulators are laying the groundwork for what could turn gambling halls into adult arcades to appeal to a younger generation of would-be gamblers.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The IRS is doing business with tax delinquent contractors despite a federal law that bars the tax agency from awarding contracts to these companies, a government watchdog said Wednesday.
HAVANA (AP) - Online home-rental service Airbnb says it is exploring a significant expansion of its operations in Cuba two months after it became the first major U.S. business to enter the island in decades.
NEW YORK (AP) - As much as I wish the Apple Watch could do more, I find it the best smartwatch available, given its polished design and wide range of apps.
UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. (AP) - "Fast & Furious" star Vin Diesel traded the franchise's signature muscle cars for a new kind of ride.
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - The Confederate flag is not a hateful symbol but instead a banner with positive historical context despite "the few thousand people that run around wearing sheets and committing atrocities," said Ben Jones, the "Dukes of Hazzard" actor and former Democratic congressman.