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John Legend 05.14.2017

2017 Jacksonville Jazz Fest

Experience all Downtown Jacksonville has to offer as it comes alive with the sounds of jazz greats and modern favorites at the 217 Jacksonville Jazz Festival on Memorial Day weekend.  Join the City of Jacksonville May 25-28 and experience three stages of live jazz, local food, drinks, shopping and entertainment.  Since first taking place in 1981, the Jazz Fest has become one of the largest jazz festivals in the country, offering a fun and vibrant street festival atmosphere, and in 2017 you can experience it on an even larger scale throughout 15 blocks of downtown.

  • Thursday, May 25
  • Piano Competition
  • Florida Theatre
  • Doors open at 6pm, Competition at 7pm
  • Friday, May 26
  • Festival hours 4pm-midnight
  • Music starts at 5pm
  • Saturday, May 27
  • Festival hours 1pm-midnight
  • Music starts at 2pm
  • Sunday, May 28
  • Festival hours 1pm-11pm
  • Music starts at 2pm

For a complete list of artists and scheduled performances, click here.

Cinco de Mayo: Five things you didn’t know

Cinco de Mayo is upon us. Many will be celebrating the holiday with margaritas and Mexican food.

>> Read more trending news  

Here are five facts about the Mexican holiday that you can use to impress your friends:

1) Despite a common misconception, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico’s Independence Day. The holiday celebrates the  Battle of Puebla , where, against all odds, the Mexicans made a stand against an invading French army in 1862.

2) Cinco de Mayo is celebrated more in the United States than it is in Mexico, with the exception of the city of Puebla. Mexico holds more of a celebration on its  Independence Day, September 16, than it does on Cinco de Mayo.

3) The holiday means big business for the avocado industry. The  California Avocado Commission says that Americans consume around 81 million avocados during Cinco de Mayo.

4) Chandler, Arizona, has a unique way of celebrating Cinco de Mayo. It hosts a Chihuahua race every year.

>>  Quiz: How much do you know about Cinco de Mayo?

5) The 2010 U.S. Census estimates that about 31.8 million U.S. residents are of Mexican origin. The largest concentration of Mexican-Americans is in Los Angeles, the city that holds the largest Cinco de Mayo celebration in the U.S.

Solar eclipse stamp changes from eclipsed sun to full moon

To commemorate the total solar eclipse over the US in August, the U.S. Postal Service is releasing a landmark stamp that does something no other stamp can.

The Total Solar Eclipse Forever stamp, which will be issued June 20, changes when you touch it from an image of the eclipsed sun to one of the full moon.

>> Read more trending news

On August 21, the moon will slip between the sun and Earth, casting a shadow that will create the first full solar eclipse over the U.S. in 38 years.

In a swath of the country from South Carolina to Oregon, darkness will reign in the middle of the day for a full two minutes and 40 seconds, beginning at 1:25 p.m. in the Eastern time zone.

>> Related: Time running out to get reservations for the total solar eclipse in US

The solar eclipse stamp image is a photograph taken by astrophysicist Fred Espenak, aka Mr. Eclipse, of Portal, AZ, that shows a total solar eclipse seen from Jalu, Libya, on March 29, 2006.

Thermochromic ink makes the stamp work. Using the heat of your finger, the image will reveal an underlying image of the moon, which Espenak also took. The image reverts back to the eclipse once it cools.

>> Related: Rare total solar eclipse visible from America in August 

Thermochromic inks are vulnerable to UV light and should be kept out of direct sunlight as much as possible to preserve this special effect. To help ensure longevity, the Postal Service will be offering a special envelope to hold and protect the stamp pane for a nominal fee.

The back of the stamp will have a map of the eclipse path.

Read more here. 

ESPN anchor draws ire over network’s soft WWE coverage, drops pro wrestling SportsCenter segment

Pro wrestling fans and writers had questioned World Wrestling Entertainment for several weeks after the disappearance of one of its lead announcers from television, Mauro Ranallo, who was suffering from depression.

Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer said Ranallo may have been the victim of WWE’s bullying culture, particularly John Layfield, his color commentator who made disparaging remarks about Ranallo following his absence on TV and during an out-of-character segment on the company’s streaming network.

The allegations became more rampant after the release of “Best Seat in The House,” a book by former WWE ring announcer Justin Roberts. Roberts alleged Layfield bullied him and others regularly, particularly announcers. This behavior and culture was not only tolerated but encouraged by WWE owner Vince McMahon.

ESPN started covering WWE regularly last year, launching its own pro wrestling section on its website, and with a weekly SportsCenter segment by ESPN anchor Jonathan Coachman, a former WWE announcer himself.

ESPN has been questioned for its involvement with WWE, especially its reluctance to cover negative news about the company, almost to the point of sticking to storyline-esque interviews on its programming. The questioning began heating up over the weekend when the story bullying story began to go viral. When asked in a tweet if ESPN would cover the controversy, wrestling journalist Meltzer replied expressing doubt in strong language. 

Coachman wasn’t involved in the discussion, but entered the fray anyway with a shot at Meltzer.

In the middle of his argument, Coachman announced he was dropping the weekly WWE segment from SportsCenter. He deleted the Tweet later, then said he had been planning on dropping it for several weeks because of other projects, but his timing seemed suspect. He pointed fans toward ESPN’s vertical for pro wrestling and WWE coverage.

ESPN has drawn ire for its news coverage, often for its abundance of debate shows during the morning hours and conflict of interest of having TV deals with the companies it covers. The network dropped a planned fictional show based on a pro football team after criticism from the NFL, then later dropped support of a PBS Frontline documentary on accusations the NFL had covered up concussion issues. 

John Cena meets 12-year-old fan with cerebral palsy

WrestleMania 33 is Sunday night, and fans will pack the Amway Arena in Orlando or watch the matches live on the WWE Network. John Cena will be one of the headliners in pro wrestling’s biggest showcase.

>> Read more trending news 

Fans all have their favorites, and John Cena certainly ranks high among WWE fans. Recently, Cena made a 12-year-old fan’s dream come true.

At a WWE card in Johnson City, Tennessee, Cena spotted Payton Marion, who has cerebral palsy, and tossed him a T-shirt and wristband, WVLT reported. After the matches, Cena met with Payton and his father, Justin Marion.

“Payton is super excited about all that, all his friends have been aggravating him, calling him a superstar,” Justin Marion told WVLT. “The fact that my son was able to meet one of his heroes, my heart melts, and it was just crazy.”

Justin Marion explained on Reddit that WWE wrestler AJ Styles set up the meeting between Cena and his son.

“He saw us standing around, and asked if we wanted a picture,” Jason Marion said. “Of course we said ‘yes.’ Then he asked if we got to see everyone.”

When Justin Marion said Payton saw everyone but Cena — his favorite wrestler — Styles invited father and son backstage to the locker room.

Cena arrived and chatted with Payton, capping an exciting night for the boy.

Payton Marion said he uses Cena as motivation during his physical therapy.

Cena is one of pro wrestling’s biggest ambassadors, granting more than 500 requests in the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

At SXSW, Joe Biden pushes to end divisions that hamper fight against cancer

In an emotional talk at South by Southwest on Sunday afternoon, former Vice President Joe Biden described his frustration with government silos preventing cancer research from moving forward and described the work he and his wife, Jill Biden, are doing with the Biden Foundation cancer initiative.

The so-called Cancer Moonshot work, which Joe and Jill Biden say they plan to devote the rest of their lives to, was the topic of a much-anticipated presentation at the conference, where government talk has taken center stage amid a divisive political climate.

Joe Biden stopped short of devoting significant time criticizing President Donald Trump’s administration, but did draw applause at one point for referencing Trump by suggesting that not caring about clean air or water is correlated to the fight against cancer.

>> Beau Biden's widow in romantic relationship with his brother, report says

“It frustrates me,” Biden said, without calling Trump by name.

Instead, after being introduced by his wife, Biden spent the bulk of his hour-long Austin Convention Center talk describing what work has been done on the cancer initiative and the work that needs to be done going forward.

In particular, Biden said, 50 years of walls erected between different disciplines need to be broken down.

“If we did nothing more than break down the silos of preventing greater collaboration because of how the system has been arranged, not intentionally ...  we could extend the life of a lot of people with cancer,” Biden said.

As an example, Biden cited a case in which under the administration of former President Barack Obama, $30 million was awarded to improve electronic recordkeeping. “It got divided up five ways, into six different silos. You can’t share information, by design even,” he said.

As to why he chose South by Southwest to deliver this message, Biden said that he needs the collective help of the kinds of people who attend the conference.

“South by Southwest has brought together some of the most creative minds in the world,” Biden said. Even those who work in technology as entertainment can innovate in ways to fight cancer in unexpected ways, he said. 

>> For complete SXSW coverage, head to Statesman.comMyStatesman.com512tech.com and Austin360.com

“That’s why we need your help. You’re the future. We can solve these problems. These are technological problems. These are not cancer problems. Some of the most innovative minds in the world are sitting in front of me,” Biden said.

The cancer moonshot initiative, Biden said, began when he had decided not to run for president in the 2016 election and was ready to announce it in the White House Rose Garden. 

"I would have loved to have been the president who presided over the end of cancer as we know it,” he remembered telling Obama, which put into motion the work, spurred by the death from cancer of his son, Beau Biden.

Biden spoke of the end of his son’s life toward the end of the talk, speaking more quietly and emotionally as he described a clinical trial his son participated in and how he felt when Congress, led by political rival Mitch McConnell, named a chunk of cancer funding for Beau.

“The one thing I know maybe better than anybody living is the Congress,” Joe Biden said. “And guess what? Guess what? The only bipartisan thing left in America is the fight against cancer.”

By the end of the talk, Biden was eliciting tears from the crowd. Referencing John F. Kennedy, he ended the SXSW presentation by describing the desperation of those dying of cancer who want just one more month, or even a day. He concluded: “That’s the urgency of now. This moment. This instant.”

>> Read more trending news

In addition to breaking down walls among disciplines, Biden said making better use of money taxpayers are already putting toward cancer research, better access to clinical trials and more widespread sharing of critical data are keys to the cancer battle.

“Your government that many of you don't like is the vehicle for how this gets funded,” he said.

Biden described a bright spot that has already began to spur change: cancer-sequencing data at the Genomic Data Commons has been accessed online more than 80 million times. Partnerships between research groups, nonprofits and tech companies, he said, will keep data flowing more freely. “It’s a big deal,” he said.

South by Southwest continues through Saturday, March 19.

'The Handmaid's Tale' is making SXSW 100 percent more unsettling

One way to promote a TV show at South by Southwest: opening a pop-up chicken restaurant. Another way: terrifying people to death. Hulu’s “The Handmaid’s Tale” went for option No. 2 this weekend in Austin, Texas.

As Statesman Shots co-hosts Omar Gallaga and Tolly Moseley explained in an episode of the podcast Saturday, they came across stoically marching ladies in red on their way to the Los Pollos Hermanos installation promoting AMC’s “Better Call Saul.” They were not the only people startled by the guerilla marketing for the dystopian drama.

>> For complete SXSW coverage, head to Statesman.comMyStatesman.com512tech.com and Austin360.com

All these (presumably) Handmaid's Tale folks are scaring me. #sxsw pic.twitter.com/VkXHYzhsUI— Anthony Balderrama (@anthelonious) March 10, 2017 <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

A bunch of Handmaid's Tale handmaids are freaking people out at SXSW.https://t.co/6MM5hmB7jl pic.twitter.com/cHaBixOzX5— io9 (@io9) March 11, 2017 <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

>> Read more trending news

Holy cats - Handmaid's Tale right outside the Austin convention center! #sxsw https://t.co/wjtia7Ilmi— Christopher Lucas (@ChristophrLucas) March 12, 2017 <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

Happy nightmares, SXSW. 

PricewaterhouseCoopers identifies man responsible for Oscars Best Picture mix-up

Nicole Moschella contributed to this report.

PricewaterhouseCoopers, the accounting firm responsible for organizing results and monitoring distribution of awards at the Oscars, has identified the man responsible for a snafu Sunday night in which "La La Land" was mistakenly announced as Best Picture instead of "Moonlight."

>> Read more trending stories  

After releasing a statement apologizing to Faye Dunaway, Warren Beatty and the casts and crews of "Moonlight” and “La La Land," the company released another apology, acknowledging that an accountant at the firm is to blame for the mistake.

"PwC takes full responsibility for the series of mistakes and breaches of established protocols during last night's Oscars," the statement says. "PwC partner Brian Cullinan mistakenly handed the back-up envelope for Actress in a Leading Role instead of the envelope for Best Picture to presenters Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway.

"Once the error occurred, protocols for correcting it were not followed through quickly enough by Mr. Cullinan or his partner. We are deeply sorry for the disappointment suffered by the cast and crew of 'La La Land' and 'Moonlight.' We sincerely apologize to Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, Jimmy Kimmel, ABC and the Academy, none of whom (were) at fault for (Sunday) night's errors.

"We wish to extend our deepest gratitude to each of them for the graciousness they displayed during such a difficult moment. For the past 83 years, the Academy has entrusted PwC with the integrity of the awards process during the ceremony, and last night we failed the Academy."

pic.twitter.com/uNGSbhgKFt— PwC LLP (@PwC_LLP) February 28, 2017

According to People magazine, Cullinan, who was explicitly told to not use social media during the awards show, tweeted just minutes before accidentally handing Beatty and Dunaway the wrong envelope.

In a now-deleted tweet, Cullinan posted a picture of Emma Stone holding her award backstage after she had accepted the award for Best Actress for her role in "La La Land."

"Brian was asked not to tweet or use social media during the show," an unnamed source told People. "He was fine to tweet before he arrived at the red carpet but once he was under the auspices of the Oscar night job, that was to be his only focus. Tweeting right before the Best Picture category was announced was not something that should have happened."

According to the source, the blunder may have put PwC's relationship with the Academy Awards in jeopardy.

"The Academy has launched a full-scale review of its relationship with PwC, but it is very complicated," the source told the magazine. "Vote-tallying and the Oscar night job is just one part of what PwC does with the Academy. It is too early to say how this will play out, but everyone is of course taking it very very seriously."

Before the start of the Oscars on Sunday, Cullinan told The Huffington Post that a mishap announcing an incorrect winner was "unlikely," and that if there were a mistake, PwC executives "would make sure that the correct person was known very quickly."

"Whether that entails stopping the show, us walking onstage, us signaling to the stage manager -- that’s really a game-time decision, if something like that were to happen," he said.

>> Here's how the Oscars mix-up for Best Picture happened

"La La Land" producers had already begun their acceptance speeches before being notified of the mix-up.

Cullinan has not publicly commented on the incident or posted on his Twitter account since the mistake on Sunday night.

Tim Ryan, a senior partner and U.S. chairman at PwC, told Variety magazine that he has spoken with Cullinan about the incident.

"He feels very, very terrible and horrible. He is very upset about this mistake. And it is also my mistake, our mistake, and we all feel very bad," Ryan said.

According to Cullinan's Twitter bio, he is a Cornell alumnus and a managing partner for PwC's Southwest region. He is based out of Malibu, California. 

Oscars 2017: Academy issues statement on Best Picture mishap 

Donald Trump says Oscar mix-up was caused by media's focus on him

The accounting firm responsible for tallying Oscar votes and keeping up with envelopes containing the winners has apologized for the Best Picture gaffe at the end of Sunday’s Academy Awards, but President Donald Trump believes the mix-up was actually about him.

>> Read more trending stories  

In an interview with Breitbart, the president said people involved with the awards show were so focused on “attacking him” that attention to detail suffered.

“I think they were focused so hard on politics that they didn’t get the act together at the end,” Trump said. “It was a little sad. It took away from the glamour of the Oscars. It didn’t feel like a very glamorous evening. I’ve been to the Oscars. There was something very special missing, and then to end that way was sad.”

Breitbart noted that the “awful mistake came after hours of Trump-bashing by the Hollywood elites, who hammered the president in joke after joke. Now, the president has got the last laugh as he hammers Hollywood for its epic fail.”

>> Oscars 2017: 'Moonlight' wins Best Picture after 'La La Land' mistakenly announced

>> Here's how the Oscars mix-up for Best Picture happened

Actor Warren Beatty and his “Bonnie and Clyde” costar Faye Dunaway introduced the final trophy of the night, but they received the wrong envelope. Beatty had a quizzical look on his face and Dunaway announced “La La Land,” apparently having read the title.

“Hello. I want to tell you what happened: I opened the envelope, and it said Emma Stone, ‘La La Land.’ I wasn’t trying to be funny,” Beatty told the audience shortly after the mix-up. “This is ‘Moonlight,’ the best picture.”

In a statement, PricewaterhouseCoopers apologized for the snafu.

“We sincerely apologize to “Moonlight,” “La La Land,” Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, and Oscar viewers for the error that was made during the award announcement for best picture,” the firm said in a statement. “The presenters had mistakenly been given the wrong category envelope and when discovered, was immediately corrected. We are currently investigating how this could have happened, and deeply regret that this occurred. We appreciate the grace with which the nominees, the Academy, ABC, and Jimmy Kimmel handled the situation.”

>> 2017 Oscars: 'Moonlight' Best Picture, complete list of winners

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