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AP-AR--Arkansas News Digest 1:30 pm, AR

November 26, 2018

Hello! Here’s a look at how AP’s general news coverage is shaping up in Arkansas. Questions about coverage plans are welcome and should be directed to the AP-Little Rock bureau aparkansas@ap.org or 1-800-715-7291.

The Little Rock bureau is reachable at: 501-225-3668.

A reminder this information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change. Expected stories may not develop, or late-breaking and more newsworthy events may take precedence. Advisories and digests will keep you up to date. All times are Central.

Some TV and radio stations will receive shorter APNewsNow versions of the stories below, along with all updates.

For up-to-the minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at newsroom.ap.org

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TOP STORIES:

WHITE HOUSE-CHRISTMAS

WASHINGTON — The traditional White House gingerbread house is a massive, sugary replica of the entire National Mall. The pastry creation — featured at Monday’s unveiling of the White House holiday decorations — required 225 pounds of dough, 25 pounds of chocolate and 20 pounds of white icing. White House pastry chefs have created a gingerbread house during the holidays since the early 1970s. The first one depicted a Christmas village. Another was a replica of President Bill Clinton’s boyhood home in Arkansas. “American Treasures” is the theme of this year’s White House holiday decor, designed by first lady Melania Trump. By Deb Riechmann. SENT: 330 words, with photos.

FROM AP MEMBERS:

SCHOOL GRADES-ARKANSAS

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Arkansas’ new practice of assigning A to F letter grades to public schools is having big consequences to schools’ reputations and operations. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports that the state’s 2-year-old school accountability system assigns letter grades as part of a school’s online report card. The practice has been used as bragging rights for schools with all A grades. 280 words.

IN BRIEF:

— JUVENILE DETENTION ASSAULT — A federal judge has rejected a request to delay the trial of two former Arkansas juvenile detention officers on charges of conspiring to assault at least four juvenile inmates.

— HOLIDAY EXPRESS — A festive holiday train has started its journey through Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Illinois and Missouri.

IN SPORTS:

FOOTBALL:

FBC--T25-SEC CHAMPIONSHIP-WIN & IN

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Neither No. 1 Alabama nor No. 4 Georgia is anxiously awaiting their playoff fates this season, but whoever wins the SEC championship game showdown is definitely in the playoffs. The Crimson Tide could even get in with a close loss. By John Zenor. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos.

HORSE RACING:

RAC--SANTA ANITA-ANNOUNCER

ARCADIA, Calif. — Frank Mirahmadi will become Santa Anita’s new race caller when the winter meet begins Dec. 26, replacing Michael Wrona who was let go after two years. Mirahmadi recently completed his fourth season as track announcer at Monmouth Park in New Jersey. He will conclude his race calling duties at Aqueduct in New York on Dec. 16. The 51-year-old caller has also worked at Florida’s Hialeah, Oaklawn in Arkansas, Golden Gate Fields in Northern California and Louisiana Downs. He had brief stints at Santa Anita in 2014 and 2016. 170 words.

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If you have stories of regional or statewide interest, please email them to pebbles@ap.org and follow up with a phone call to 800-715-7291.

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The AP-Little Rock

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