NEW YORK (AP) - Electricians working atop a New York City skyscraper on Friday installed the last of the 2,688 crystal triangles that give the Times Square New Year's Eve Ball its shimmer, including a panel dreamt up by a 12-year-old former cancer patient.
DENVER (AP) - The first batch of Denver businesses approved to sell recreational marijuana got their licenses Friday, the owners mugging for pictures and saying they never thought they'd see the day when they'd get a permit to sell pot.
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Call it throwing the book at the bookworms.
SC GOV. HALEY GETS A BERETTA PISTOL FOR CHRISTMAS: COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Santa was apparently right on target for Christmas for South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.
CHICAGO (AP) - Early blasts of snow, ice and below-zero temperatures haven't stopped a surprising number of Chicago cyclists from spinning through the slush this winter, thanks in part to a city so serious about accommodating them that it deploys mini-snow plows to clear bike lanes.
HOUSTON (AP) - A white Houston-area man was arrested Thursday on federal hate crimes charges for allegedly shooting video of himself sucker-punching a 79-year-old black man in a "knockout game"-style attack.
PHOENIX (AP) - Two men were arrested Christmas Day on opposite sides of the country after they breached perimeters at major airports, raising questions about security measures and whether more needs to be done to protect the nation's transit hubs.
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Pastor Mike Butzberger insists he only had holiday spirit in mind when his Florida church's marquee read: "Christmas - Easier to spell than Hanukkah."
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - Members of the Ramapough Native American tribe have filed a $50 million lawsuit against the makers of a recent Hollywood movie they say depicts their people in a negative light.
LITCHFIELD, Maine (AP) - Utility crews from Maine to Michigan and into Canada worked Wednesday to restore power to more than half a million homes left in the dark by last weekend's ice storm, and people slowly trickled out of shelters to spend Christmas Day at their finally warm homes.
WEST READING, Pa. (AP) - A terminally ill girl who received support from thousands of Christmas carolers outside her home over the weekend died early on Christmas morning, her family said.
LAS VEGAS (AP) - Las Vegas cab driver Gerardo Gamboa thought someone left a bag of chocolates in the back seat of his vehicle, but the stash turned out to be $300,000 in cold hard cash.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Mailing a letter is about to get a little more expensive.
NEW YORK (AP) - Tablet computers are so easy to use that even a 3-year-old can master them.
NEW YORK (AP) - It's beginning to look a lot like ... the day after Christmas?
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A Virginia man who has fathered children with several women has agreed to get a vasectomy to knock up to five years off his prison term in a child endangerment case that has evoked the country's dark history of forced sterilization.
NEW YORK (AP) - The Obama administration justified using drones to kill Americans suspected of terrorism overseas by citing the war against al-Qaida and by saying a surprise attack against an American in a foreign land would not violate the laws of war, according to a previously secret government memorandum released Monday.
• VAGINA SCULPTURE TRAPS U.S. STUDENT: BERLIN (AP) - An American exchange student who got stuck in a giant vagina sculpture was freed by firefighters in southwestern Germany.
MOSCOW (AP) - Russian President Vladimir Putin publicly expressed support Sunday for Ukraine's declaration of a cease-fire in its battle against pro-Russian separatists and called on both sides to negotiate a compromise.
SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who had been a prisoner of war in Afghanistan for five years, has been shifted to outpatient care at a Texas military base, the U.S. Army said in a statement Sunday. Bergdahl, 28, had been receiving inpatient treatment at Brooke Army Medical Center at Fort Sam Houston. He is now receiving outpatient care on the base in San Antonio, according to the statement. The Army said his "reintegration process" is proceeding with exposure to more people and a gradual increase in social interaction.
WASHINGTON (AP) - Al-Qaida-inspired militants who have violently seized territory in Iraq could grow in power and destabilize other countries in the region, President Barack Obama said.
SEATTLE (AP) - Friends on Sunday mourned a well-known outdoors writer and photographer who had been missing for three days in Mount Rainier National Park before searchers said they recovered a body of a woman.
NEW YORK (AP) - The Las Vegas ensemble comedy "Think Like a Man Too" topped a slow weekend at the summer box office with $30 million, besting blockbuster holdovers from last week and Clint Eastwood's new Four Seasons musical "Jersey Boys."
LOS ANGELES (AP) - The West Coast ports that are America's gateway for hundreds of billions of dollars of trade with Asia and beyond are no stranger to labor unrest and even violence.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - The U.S. military is looking into allowing all of the nation's veterans who served honorably to shop online at exchanges that sell discounted, name-brand goods - a perk that is currently available only to a small minority.
BELFAST, Northern Ireland (AP) - Giants, dragons and vengeful queens have for generations populated Northern Ireland's folk tales. Now, such creatures are visiting the land in a different version - on the sets for the hit TV show "Game of Thrones." But rather than spells and destruction, they're bringing an economic boost to this British province still healing from its past of political violence.