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WATCH WHAT YOU'RE DOING!

If you were out for the evening and missed last Tuesday's returns from Belleville, Ill., be advised that Mark A. Kern won reelection as mayor. Fairly easily, too. Which just goes to show how effective a campaign he ran, since his opponent was ... Mark A. Kern. Really. The incumbent's billboards and mailings warned voters not to be confused. The ballot also helped, listing the mayor's and challenger's middle names: Andrew and Alan, respectively. His honor's new term will be his second; he's already hinting he may seek a third.

RESERVE NOW FOR NEXT YEAR

In Quebec City late last week, bulldozers were hired to do a job that the thermometer eventually would have taken care of for free. Can you guess what? Right, the demolition of Ice Hotel, believed to be the first of its type in North America (although the concept is popular in Sweden). In its inaugural year, the upscale novelty attracted 1,500 guests at $96 a night, per person/ double occupancy. Plans call for it to be rebuilt and even expanded next winter.

Even remote national parks are at risk, green group says

Glacier, the Smoky Mountains, and Yellowstone are among the national parks facing the greatest threats to their flora and fauna, the National Parks Conservation Association says. In releasing the third annual list of what it considers high-risk areas, the environmental group took into consideration such factors as pollution, development, overuse, "underfunding," and neglect. The parks on this year's list, in alphabetical order:

Alaskan parks: Denali, Katmai, Gates of the Arctic, Glacier Bay, Wrangell-St. Elias

Big Bend, Texas.

Fire Island Seashore, New York

Frederick Douglass historic site, Washington, D.C.

Glacier, Montana.

Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee/North Carolina.

Petrified Forest, Arizona

Everglades, Biscayne Bay, and Big Cypress, Florida

Yellowstone, Wyoming

- Associated Press

(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Monitor

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