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Beavers Just Don't Give a Dam for March of Progress

March 13, 1987|ANN HEROLD

A bunch of busy beavers are making a muck of a proposed supermarket in Madison, Miss. Flooding and the resultant acres of mire caused by dams erected by the creatures on a nearby stream have already cost the construction company building the store at least one one-ton backhoe, which sank into the mud, and months of time. And as fast as construction workers tear down the dams, the beavers build them back up. "We got bulldozers out and mowed the dams down, but they've got them built back in a day or two--just as soon as we can do something, it seems like. It feels like a losing battle," said Jim Riley, chief engineer for Jitney Jungle Stores Inc., which is building the store. The beavers have so effectively blocked the march of progress that company officials who had planned to open the 26,000-square-foot supermarket in late spring can only hope to open it in October at the earliest--if they can stop the beavers.

--A Montana sheriff and his deputy were probably looking forward to a trip to the Hawaiian Islands to pick up a man wanted for investigation of felony theft. Now they're wondering when and if they'll ever get home. Their prisoner, Jerry Hawes of Great Falls, raised such a ruckus at a boarding gate at Honolulu International Airport that the airline refused to let Hawes board the plane. Cascade County Sheriff Barry Michelotti tried to book another flight, but no one would allow them on. "This may be amusing to some people, but it is costing the state a lot of money, money we don't have," said Debbie Davis of the office of Gov. Ted Schwinden. In the meantime, the sheriff has contacted the National Guard about possibly hitching a ride, and also is investigating a commercial freight service.

--The early bird will not only get the worm in Carlsbad, N.M., but something much more appetizing, the first screening of the day of whatever flick the Cinema Mall happens to be featuring that week. The theater facility is experimenting with a 6:30 a.m. showing, and is even considering a regular cinematic breakfast club, with theater employees making wake-up calls to movie-goers. "We expect quite a few to show up, for no other reason than to be unconventional," said theater manager Mick Sullivan. "Some of the staff here go to school, and they have offered to come before school to help out. They think it will be neat to have hot dogs and popcorn for breakfast," Sullivan said.

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