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1:44 PM

What's Up Doc? What's Up Is That Today Is National Bugs Bunny Day

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Does it seem as if there is a national day for everything?  It does and there is. Just ask the folks at National Day Calendar.  Visit them on Facebook at NationalDayCalendar. Bugs is a national icon well deserving of his own day.

April 30 is National Bugs Bunny Day. It commemorates the first appearance of the prototypical wisecracking cartoon rabbit that came to be called Bugs Bunny. This debut came in a short film named Porky’s Hare Hunt. This short as they were known back then was released on April 30, 1938. 

It took several years for illustrators to refine Bugs’ appearance to what we recognize today. But from the beginning he had the same hell-be-damned attitude that 3 generations of movie goers and TV viewers would laugh at.

My first encounter with Bugs was when I was a small child and I locked on to a TV show that featured Warner Brothers cartoons. My next significant encounter with Bugs happened after my children were born. They were trying to find something to watch on cable TV and I joined them and found a cartoon show playing Warner Brothers’ Looney Tunes cartoons including Bugs Bunny. There are worst things on cable TV.

The first voice of Bugs was actor Mel Blanc, who voiced Bugs for a half-century.

Bugs is the second cartoon character on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, following the legendary Disney staple, Mickey Mouse.

Along with his nation, Bugs went to combat in the Second World War. Two of his films were eventually pulled from circulation after the war as political and cultural sensitivities changed. They were Bugs Bunny Nips the Nips and Herr Meets the Hare.

Bugs was an honorary Marine Corp Master Sergeant in that war. The ears were a novel touch but the defiant attitude was the same. He could have been facing off against Porky Pig or an enemy sniper. Let me see what you got.
11:43 AM

Free Beer and More on Tax Day

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April 17 2016  marks the day by which all those who have earned income in the United States in 2016 must pay their federal tax on that income. In an attempt to offset the pain of Tax Day I offer a couple of presents.

First, here are eight of the most overlooked tax deductions, courtesy of the tax pros at Turbo Tax, via an online ad. 

State Sales Tax

Reinvested Dividends

Out-of-Pocket Charitable Donations

Student Loan Interest Paid by Mom and Dad

Moving Expenses Incurred to Take First Job

Dependent Child Care Tax Credit

Earned Income Tax Credit

The State Tax You Paid Last Year

Second, a number of companies are offering Tax Day presents to their members or customers. These presents include everything from free beer to a massage to ease the stress of Tax Day.

World of Beers has a free select beer or $5 off a beer waiting for you on Tax Day.

Certain Arby’s locations are offering you free curly fries on Tax Day.

Bob Evans Restaurants will take 30% off your entire purchase on Tax Day with an online coupon.

Boston Market is offering customers a Tax Day special of a half chicken individual meal with two sides, cornbread, a regular fountain drink, and a cookie.

Bruegger’s Bagels has a Big Bagel Bundle for you for only $10.40. That deal began April 12 and ends
on April 19.

McDonald’s customers at US locations who buy a Big Mac or Quarter Pounder at the regular price on Tax Day can get a second one for a penny.

Planet Fitness is partnering with HydroMassage to give away free massage. The offer is good through April 22.

This list was compiled by NBC South Florida. Check with the company’s website or your local locations of these companies to determine if they are participating in the promotion.
9:59 AM

The Theme of EBT the Next Generation 2017

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The Theme of EBT the Next Generation 2017

The planners for November’s EBT the Next Generation conference have selected a theme for this year’s show, the 20th annual event. The theme this year will be Navigating the Future.

Tied to that theme is the subject of the annual Front Page Focus plenary session, Where will the new administration take Nutrition Programs like SNAP, nee Food Stamps in the future. In policy areas like foreign relations, healthcare, and trade, the new administration has made no secret about wanting to break from the policies of prior administrations. Unknown at this point is whether that maverick attitude will imbue nutrition policy.

Once again the conference will feature 8 hours of networking time with colleagues from across the country as well as buyers, sellers and influencers in this fast growing electronic payments business, as well as 3 days of education to bring you up to speed on this exciting segment of the payments business.

For registration and hotel information, visit

Once again, the show will include 2 Technology Showcases that will highlight some of the technology product that will power the Next Generation of EBT.

Join federal officials, state representatives, processors, technology companies, and others to see what lies ahead for modernizing and securing the distribution of government transfer payments.

10:08 AM

4 Tips for Writing Press Releases that Actually Get Read

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4 Tips for Writing Press Releases that Actually Get Read

I offer this advice as a former reporter, editor and news director responsible for sorting through hundreds of releases each week.

  1.  Be Social
    1. Make keywords the foundation of your release. A keyword provides a a focal point for both you, the writer, and me, the reader. It also provides a way for others to find your release in the future. I may only spend a minute or two with your release, but on the Internet your pitch will live forever as readers search for the keywords that are the foundation of your message.
    2. Double-check to make sure that all of your copy points supports those keywords. That will keep your release tight and crisp, increasing your chances that the release will be read from the first line to the last. This will increase the chances that your story will make it into print or on the air.
    3. Include media. While reports of the death of print media are premature, we live in a multimedia world. Including images and audio file or links to them increases the odds your story will get picked up.
    4. Include links. Keep the release to 1 page. External links allow you to provide more information while you keep the release to 1 page. Whether or not I want to follow those links is up to me. All of the keywords and their supporting data should comprise the body of the release. Just don't make me work to hard to find the information. Links should not be gratuitous, but should point me to additional information that would help me understand your message. A link to an organization's data sheet would be appropriate. Keep links to a minimum and never use the same link more than once. Your organization produces a lot of information that will help me get to know you better. these are appropriate sources to link to. These could include your press release service, such as BusinessWire or PR Newswire, social media sites like Facebook or LinkedIn or Twitter. Many of these I will find on my own. Product slicks, customer rankings and similar internal information are more helpful.
  2. Keep your caption or headline short. A handful of word.
  3. Banks are required to know their customers. So are PR writers. I am your customer. Read my publication or listen to my newscast to know the kind of stories I need. 
  4. Always include a call to action. What do you want my audience to do. What do you want me to do. What should the outcome of the release be. You get the idea.