Motorists maintain it's better to keep up with traffic- -even if that means speeding. We'll see what State Police have to say.
And a rumor spreads like wildfire at Sweet Briar.
Tonight on News 7 Sports - Steve Mason checks in from Durham where the Blue Devils and JJ Redick are off to a flying start.
And does buying a ticket to a game give fans a license to dog their own players. Bryan Randall will offer up an opinion on that very subject.
The thermometer will register nearly 20 degrees below normal as we head into Thanksgiving day. What else can you expect on this holiday weekend? The forecast coming up.
News 7 at Six is next.
[IN Q=Sometimes you're better off]
((SOMETIMES YOU'RE BETTER OFF TO LET THE SPEED RUN AND LET THE TRAFFIC FLOW.))
[OUT Q=let the traffic flow.]
Two years after the speed limit was lowered on Interstate 81... the number of accidents has actually increased.
But at the same, the severity of those accidents has been reduced.
Good evening, I'm Shannon Young.
And I'm Keith Humphry.
Millions of people are hitting the highway tonight to begin their Thanksgiving holiday, and thousands will be traveling through the Roanoke Valley on Interstate 81.
They will find a lower speed limit on a 15 mile stretch of the interstate,
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-Shannon & JoeD/Microwave;]
But tonight Joe Dashiell reports many of them won't be following the rules of the road.
[LIVE= JoeD /FULL Microwave]
Keith and Shannon, VDOT engineers tell us that speeds have been creeping up since the initial burst of publicity in January of last year.
And isn't hard to confirm that fact.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=03-Roanoke Co.; :00]
[SUPER=01-Sgt. Frank Parries/State Police; :17]
[SUPER=01-Jim Gordon/Interstate Driver; :45]
[OUT Q=to get where they're going.]
((Observe the speed limit through the Roanoke Valley and watch the traffic pass you by.
VDOT engineers confirm that speeds have increased since the limit was first lowered here... and state police agree... but say they're convinced the change has made a difference.
State Police say they're doing their best with available manpower... enforcing the speed limit with marked and unmarked vehicles and periodically in the air.
VDOT reports that while the number of accidents has increased since the limit was lowered, the severity has decreased.))
[LIVE= Joe D /FULL Microwave]
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith-Shannon & JoeD /Microwave;]
(SHANNON QUESTION: Any problems to report out there tonight?)
Holiday travel at the Roanoke Regional Airport remained steady but smooth today.
[VO-NAT - :11]
Airport officials say Sunday is traditionally the busiest air travel day of the Thanksgiving holiday.
Most travelers say they aren't concerned about the expected hassles of travel.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT - 8:00:16]
[IN Q=You just take it...]
((ROSS HATCH/AIR TRAVELER; YOU JUST TAKE IT IN STRIDE, AND IF I'M A DAY LATE TO WORK, THEN I'M A DAY LATE TO WORK.))
[SUPER=01-Ross Hatch/Air Traveler; :00]
[OUT Q=day late to work. SECOND REF.]
[VO-NAT - :10.5]
Federal screeners are getting their first holiday test this week, and airport officials say you may want to get to the airport a little earlier because of increased security.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT - 7:49:00]
[IN Q=It will take a little...]
((AMANDA DEHAVEN/AIRPORT SPOKESPERSON; IT WILL TAKE A LITTLE LONGER TO GO THROUGH SCREENING THAN IT HAS IN THE PAST. YOU MAY WANT TO CHECK YOURSELF OUT BEFORE YOU GO, SCREEN YOURSELF. SEE IF THERE'S ANYTHING YOU HAVE ON YOUR PERSON, ANY METAL OBJECTS THAT WOULD SET OFF SCREENING.))
[SUPER=01-Amanda DeHaven/Airport Spokesperson; :00 ]
[OUT Q=that would screening.]
[VO-NAT - :11+]
The Roanoke Regional Airport recently completed its long-term overflow parking lot. You can pre-pay to park in the satellite lot across Aviation Drive, and then take a shuttle bus to the terminal.
Several families of Sweet Briar College students got a disturbing phone call today.
They were told their daughters' belongings were destroyed in a dorm fire last night.
The problem is... it's not true.
Sweet Briar authorities say they've handled about a dozen calls from worried parents today who were told a dormitory had burned down and their children had lost everything.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=No speculation]
((WILLIE NEAL/SWEET BRIAR CAMPUS POLICE CHIEF: NO SPECULATION AS TO MOTIVE RIGHT NOW. THE ONLY THING I CAN THINK OF IS SOMEONE JUST WANTS TO MAKE PEOPLE UNHAPPY, WANTS TO GET PEOPLE STIRRED UP, HYSTERICAL FOR NO GOOD REASON.))
[SUPER=01-Willie Neal/Sweet Briar Campus Police Chief]
[OUT Q=no good reason.]
The caller has most often mentioned the MetaGlass dorm as the one that burned.
In at least one case, he called the parents of a student who graduated last year, so authorities believe he may be using an old student directory.
Amherst County sheriff's authorities are being asked to help with the investigation.
The man once called a witness in the Short family slayings says he's passed a lie detector test that shows he didn't do it.
Gary Bowman tells News-7 that his lawyer gave him a polygraph test -- and he passed it -- earlier this month.
He says he's never even met the Shorts.
Henry County Sheriff Frank Cassell says he's seen the lie detector test results... but he still wants to conduct his own polygraph examination of Bowman.
Though Bowman is no longer the focus of the case, Cassell says investigators are still interested in talking to him.
In the meantime, Bowman is going back to jail Friday.
He'll serve seven days for driving drunk in Greensboro.
Bowman pled guilty to the charge Monday.
He was arrested for driving under the influence in the Greensboro D-M-V parking lot last summer.
It won't be enough to get the state out of its budget crisis, but Virginia received some much-needed tax revenue today.
Members of the Pamunkey (pah-MON-kee) and Mattaponi (MATT-uh-poh-NYE) tribes paid their taxes in the form of two bucks and other gifts.
The tradition goes back 356 years.
A treaty signed in 1646 calls for the tribes to make an annual offering to the governor in lieu of paying taxes.
One tribe offered to throw in an extra deer to help out with the state's fiscal problems.
[IN Q=Listen, ]
((GOV. MARK WARNER; LISTEN, EVERY LITTLE BIT HELPS))
[SUPER=@MarkWarner; :00 QUICK!!!]
[SUPER=01-William "Swift Water" Miles/Pamunkey Chief; :03]
[OUT Q=COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA.]
Governor Mark Warner said the annual ceremony shows the mutual respect between the people of the Commonwealth and the American Indians.
He says it is part of Virginia's long and rich heritage.
The deer were donated to the charity Hunters for the Hungry.
But it looks like the governor will keep the bolo tie.
A local program that feeds the hungry gets an early Christmas gift and some national recognition.
That's next on News 7 at Six.
Plus Thanksgiving isn't the only thing being celebrated... It's also the birthday of the Roanoke Valley's most famous landmark.
Normally a four-star rating would mean high marks for a hotel or fine restaurant.
But in Bedford County, it's a badge of honor for a charity that helps put food on the table for thousands of needy people year-round.
Steve Smallshaw reports.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=One look at]
[SUPER=03-Bedford Co.; :00]
[SUPER=01-Ken Horne/Society of St. Andrew; :50]
[SUPER=01-Carol Breitinger/Society of St. Andrew; 1:16]
[OUT Q=News7, Bedford County.]
(( One look at the world headquarters of the Society of St. Andrew will tell you that this is not an organization concerned about its corporate image.
Tucked away in the northern hills of Bedford County, the Society acts as a clearing house for millions of pounds of excess food every year.
[natsot file tape]
From potatoes to apples to cabbages, volunteers across the country glean, bag and ship produce that otherwise would be left to rot in the field.
It's all coordinated through the offices here and funded through private donations.
((But like many other charities, the Society's donations are down, in part because donors today are never sure where their money is being spent. But a new web site... Charity Navigator.. helps people rate a prospective charity by determining how much it spends on its actual mission. St. Andrew recently nailed down a nearly perfect score.))
[OUT Q=nearly perfect score.]
((KEN HORNE/SOCIETY OF ST. ANDREW: WE HAVE ALWAYS ADOPTED THE POSITION THAT CHARITIES OUGHT NOT TO BE LESS EFFICIENT THAN BUSINESS, THEY OUGHT TO BE MORE EFFICIENT BECAUSE YOU'RE DEALING WITH SOMEBODY ELSE'S MONEY AND YOU'RE DEALING WITH PEOPLE THAT DESPERATELY NEED WHAT YOU HAVE TO OFFER.))
[OUT Q=have to offer.]
Charity Navigator has determined that out of every dollar donated to the Society of St. Andrew, 96 cents actually goes to feeding the hungry.
That earned the Society the web site's highest rating of four stars.. good news as they enter the holiday giving season.
((CAROL BREITINGER/SOCIETY OF ST. ANDREWS: I THINK PEOPLE WILL REALIZE AND RECOGNIZE THE FACT THAT IT'S A VERY EFFICIENTLY RUN AND VERY EFFECTIVE ORGANIZATION THAT IS DOING VERY GOOD WORK AND IMPORTANT WORK FOR FEEDING HUNGRY PEOPLE AND THEIR MONEY IS GOING TO GO EXACTLY WHERE THEY WANT IT TO GO AND DOING WHAT IT IS THEY WANT DONE.))
[OUT Q=they want done.]
Since it began in 1983, the Society has saved more than 400 million pounds of food, providing over a billion servings to the nation's hungry.
Steve Smallshaw, News7, Bedford County.))
Danville has become the first city in Virginia to provide local phone service.
The State Corporation Commission certified its Department of Utilities this month.
The department wants to provide service in Danville and Halifax, Henry, Patrick and Pittsylvania Counties.
The city will compete with local carriers and may have better rates and reach less populated areas.
New legislation passed by the General Assembly this year made certification possible.
Bristol will be the second city certified by the S-C-C.
A round of positive economic data sent Wall Street on a holiday buying spree.
[TAKE DOW & NASDAQ PAGE]
The DOW jumped 255 points.
NASDAQ gained 43 and a half.
Many homes become fire hazards during the holiday season.
Experts say safety should be a top priority when decorating your home and Christmas tree.
An artificial tree is the safest way to go. But if you choose to buy the real thing, you need to shop for certain qualities that will make it less of a fire hazard.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=The best way to protect]
((MARLAN MORRIS/ROANOKE FIRE MARSHAL: THE BEST WAY TO PROTECT AGAINST THE RISK IS TO KEEP THE TREE AS MOIST AS POSSIBLE AND WE ENCOURAGE FOLKS TO BE BUY A TREE THAT IS RELATIVELY GREEN.. IF THE NEEDLES ARE FALLING OFF THAT'S A BAD SIGN))
[SUPER=01-Marlan Morris/Roanoke Fire Marshall]
[OUT Q=that's a bad sign]
But it's faulty lights and wiring that can ignite the fire. That's why Morris says don't use old lights or ones that show signs of wear. And make sure you use a construction grade extension cord.
Every year in this country around 4-hundred fires are caused by holiday decorations.
Coming up tonight on News 7 sports -
Booing has big at sporitng events for years - but is it OK to Boo your own players?
Plus, K and J are not only side by side in the alphabet but also on the hardwood.
Steve Mason takes us to Durham for the latest on Coach K and JJ.
Former Cave Spring star J.J. Redick has emerged as one of Duke's scoring threats. Despite his early success, Steve Mason says this Knight can't believe he's been anointed the next king of the Blue Devils basketball program.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=03-Durham, NC; :00]
[SUPER=01-J. J. Redick/Averaging 14.5 Points Per Game; :16]
[SUPER=01-Mike Krzyzewski/Duke Head Basketball Coach; :39]
[SUPER=01-Dahntay Jones/Duke Senior Forward; 1:33]
[SUPER=01-Shavlik Randolph/Duke Freshman Forward & J. J.'s Roommate; 1:45]
[OUT Q=....News 7 sports"]
((Looks can be deceiving. While J.J. Redick appears focussed on running out on to the historic Cameron Indoor Stadium floor, going through warm ups, and knocking down one of his lethal jumpers, he is in awe of his surroundings.
J.J. has formed a special relationship with his head coach, who has rewarded his freshman shooting sensation by playing him an average of 25 minutes a game, the most of any of the six highly touted Duke freshman.
Although he is not yet a starter, Redick is the first player off the bench and has already become one of Duke's main leaders on the floor.
He gives the Blue devil veterans a huge boost, gels well with them and has earned respect from the Duke basketball family.
Redick's three pointers continue to poor in as does the autograph requests but the former Cave Spring Knight gladly trades in the new found royalty for humility.
Redick and his sixth ranked Blue Devils will try and improve to 3 and OH Saturday against UCLA. Steve Mason News 7 sports.))
[GO TO PINNACLE 12996]
And you are in luck. The Duke-UCLA game is right here on Your Hometown Station at Noon this Saturday.
[GO TO PINNACLE 12994]
Also, don't forget the NFL plays here on Thanksgiving as the Patriots visit the Detroit Lions.
The action begins at 12:30 tomorrow.
[GO TO PINNACLE 12995]
And on Friday Afternoon - College Football comes your way as the LSU and Arkansas hook up in the SEC.
That one gets started at 2:30 on WDBJ-7.
The redhot UVa men's basketball team that was not in the first top 25 polls of the season, but with a win tonight they may vault into the top 15.
After beating Kentucky last night - Virginia goes for the Maui Invitational crown this evening at nine against 19th ranked Indiana.
As the 84th meeting between Tech and UVa draws closer one thing is certain - Lane Stadium will be loud and rowdy on Saturday.
In recent years - fan behavior has definitely changed across the country - and often not for the better.
We asked Tech quarterback Bryan Randall - a 19 year teenager on the hot seat - what he thinks about fans booing their own players?
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=I THINK...]
[SUPER=01-Bryan Randall/Virginia Tech Quarterback; :00]
[OUT Q=...THERE CHEERING."]
The night before Thanksgiving is also a birthday for Roanoke's best known landmark.
The star is celebrating 53-years atop Mill Mountain today.
Mayor Ralph Smith celebrated the milestone by dedicating a plaque.
The newly- erected plaque at the site honors the star's place in the National Register of Historic Places.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=boy rke]
((RALPH SMITH/ROANOKE MAYOR; BOY, ROANOKE HAS COME A LONG WAY. ONCE A FLASHY CHRISTMAS DECORATION HAS NOW BEEN OFFICIALLY RECOGNIZED AS ONE OF AMERICA'S MOST TREASURED LANDMARKS.))
The star was originally put up by the Downtown Roanoke's Merchant Association.
It was intended to be a huge Christmas ornament for the holiday shopping season but people liked it so much, it stayed and the Star City was born.
Mayor Smith says since the 90-foot star was first unveiled, Roanoke's never been the same.