What’s the biggest win you’ve ever had while betting online?


TLDR – story of how i lost a shit load of money (to me,anyways) in no more than 3 weeks — image at bottom = biggest win, but it’s not slots. I don’t know for certain with slots, but if i recall it was $700-800, and the only reason i don’t know is because i was running on sheer motivation driven by desperation at the time… i got a wild hair and deposited a LOT of money on iggy around the early half of 2020.. would you accept a biggest and absolutely dumbest loss story, instead?! https://i.imgur.com/wMeRSCo.png In reality it probably wasn’t more than 36-48 hours of total “play” time, but i spun or played “let ’em ride” on (both sites combined) ~ 75k worth over a 3 week span (waiting a few days between deposits) and it ultimately cost me about ~$6300 USD. No. I am not rich., I do not have that kind of money to just throw around… even tho I was working in a hospital making good money at the time, which is how i was able to “afford” this. There was a lot of stress involved with my job “normally” but add being in a hospital during the COVID-era, and well.. this is never a jolly ol’ time. I really guess i somehow justified talking myself into depositing and playing slots/table games for “massive upsides” by comparing it with the state of the world.. and since the whole world was actually really crazy then winning big at an online casino didn’t seem so far-fetched… To be fair, I wasn’t betting more than $1 to $3 at a time, and i held on to that BR management aspect, if you will, for a while. I had actually won up to ~$4500 (~$3000 profit) within a couple of hours…. but with the bonus rollover i still had to play something like $85,000 to cash it out. That’s not a huge issue if you’re winning, however…easy come, easy go i suppose because you can sure lose a lot in a hurry even with low bets. I finally gave up on let ’em ride after losing a LOT $2-3 at a time, and focused on some SLOTS and i don’t have to tell you folks about what it’s like thinking you’re owed a big payoff, just a few more spins… i can feel it coming…. can’t stop now…. I ultimately started betting $5-20 “occasionally” when i had a wide profit gap between me and my initial deposit.. but that’s a fine line to walk because where do you stop? I do remember toward the end, during the downfall, i was doing $10s non stop for a while because I had lost soooo much (without hitting the bonus reels, even!?) I couldn’t justify lowering the bet… because as SOON as i lower that bet… that’s when it’d hit for a mega win and it’d all be for no reason! As far as OPs question — It was during that time, I believe during the $10 bets on “777” i hit for ~$750-$800 but i just kept on rollin’, trying to get back above water cuz i was drowning for sure….*display:inline-block;vertical-align:middle.t9oUK2WY0d28lhLAh3N5qmargin-top:-23px._2KqgQ5WzoQRJqjjoznu22odisplay:inline-block;-ms-flex-negative:0;flex-shrink:0;position:relative._2D7eYuDY6cYGtybECmsxvE-ms-flex:1 1 auto;flex:1 1 auto;overflow:hidden;text-overflow:ellipsis._2D7eYuDY6cYGtybECmsxvE:hovertext-decoration:underline._19bCWnxeTjqzBElWZfIlJbfont-size:16px;font-weight:500;line-height:20px;display:inline-block._2TC7AdkcuxFIFKRO_VWis8margin-left:10px;margin-top:30px._2TC7AdkcuxFIFKRO_VWis8._35WVFxUni5zeFkPk7O4iiBmargin-top:35px._7kAMkb9SAVF8xJ3L53gcWdisplay:-ms-flexbox;display:flex;margin-bottom:8px._7kAMkb9SAVF8xJ3L53gcW*-ms-flex:auto;flex:auto._1LAmcxBaaqShJsi8RNT-Vppadding:0 2px 0 4px;vertical-align:middle._3_HlHJ56dAfStT19Jgl1bF,.nEdqRRzLEN43xauwtgTmjpadding-right:4px._3_HlHJ56dAfStT19Jgl1bFpadding-left:16px._2QZ7T4uAFMs_N83BZcN-Emfont-family:Noto Sans,Arial,sans-serif;font-size:14px;font-weight:400;line-height:18px;display:-ms-flexbox;display:flex;-ms-flex-flow:row nowrap;flex-flow:row nowrap._19sQCxYe2NApNbYNX5P5-Lcursor:default;height:16px;margin-right:8px;width:16px.isInIcons2020 .icon._19sQCxYe2NApNbYNX5P5-Lmargin:-2px 8px 0 0._3XFx6CfPlg-4Usgxm0gK8Rfont-size:16px;font-weight:500;line-height:20px._34InTQ51PAhJivuc_InKjJcolor:var(–newCommunityTheme-actionIcon)._29_mu5qI8E1fq6Uq5koje8font-size:12px;font-weight:500;line-height:16px;display:inline-block;word-break:break-word._2BY2-wxSbNFYqAy98jWyTCmargin-top:10px._3sGbDVmLJd_8OV8Kfl7dVvfont-family:Noto Sans,Arial,sans-serif;font-size:14px;font-weight:400;line-height:21px;margin-top:8px;word-wrap:break-word._1qiHDKK74j6hUNxM0p9ZIpmargin-top:12px.Jy6FIGP1NvWbVjQZN7FHA,._326PJFFRv8chYfOlaEYmGt,._1eMniuqQCoYf3kOpyx83Jj,._1cDoUuVvel5B1n5wa3K507-ms-flex-pack:center;justify-content:center;margin-top:12px;width:100%._1eMniuqQCoYf3kOpyx83Jjmargin-bottom:8px._2_w8DCFR-DCxgxlP1SGNq5margin-right:4px;vertical-align:middle._1aS-wQ7rpbcxKT0d5kjrbhborder-radius:4px;display:inline-block;padding:4px._2cn386lOe1A_DTmBUA-qSMborder-top:1px solid var(–newCommunityTheme-widgetColors-lineColor);margin-top:10px._2Zdkj7cQEO3zSGHGK2XnZvdisplay:inline-block.wzFxUZxKK8HkWiEhs0tyEfont-size:12px;font-weight:700;line-height:16px;color:var(–newCommunityTheme-button);cursor:pointer;text-align:left;margin-top:2px._3R24jLERJTaoRbM_vYd9v0._3R24jLERJTaoRbM_vYd9v0._3R24jLERJTaoRbM_vYd9v0display:none._38lwnrIpIyqxDfAF1iwhcVbackground-color:var(–newRedditTheme-line);border:none;height:1px;margin:16px 0.yobE-ux_T1smVDcFMMKFvfont-size:16px;font-weight:500;line-height:20px._2DVpJZAGplELzFy4mB0epQmargin-top:8px._2DVpJZAGplELzFy4mB0epQ .x1f6lYW8eQcUFu0VIPZzbcolor:inherit._2DVpJZAGplELzFy4mB0epQ svg.LTiNLdCS1ZPRx9wBlY2rDcolor:inherit;fill:inherit;padding-right:8px._2DVpJZAGplELzFy4mB0epQ ._18e78ihYD3tNypPhtYISq3font-family:Noto Sans,Arial,sans-serif;font-size:14px;font-weight:400;line-height:18px;color:inherit
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/*# sourceMappingURL=https://www.redditstatic.com/desktop2x/chunkCSS/IdCard.927a8835c106513651cb.css.map*/]]> Would i do it again? Hell yeah! So here’s what i LIKE to do… https://i.imgur.com/8rKz7Fn.png https://i.imgur.com/hZtOwOW.png and my biggest single win have had a couple better days, but not by much! from “betting online” — i mean, hey… it’s online and a bet, what can i say?! 🙂 — (FWIW not my first 1st on ignition, but largest single win — I hardly played last quarter of 2020 and really not at all in 2021.. so it’s been a while since i’ve felt the satisfaction of a binkament :|) https://i.imgur.com/GYCGlm1.png 

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BGC ices gambling talk on football social media sites


The UK Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) is asking football clubs to refrain from discussing and promoting gambling on their social media sites in as part of an effort to avoid triggering problem gamblers. It’s move that may seem extreme to the layman, but will likely help keep UK gambling operators a step ahead of UK gambling regulators.
Guidelines for how football clubs should handle discussions of gambling were sent out by the BGC late last week and utilize a plea from 50 former gambling addicts to make the case. They pointed out that seeing their favorite club site promoting gambling caused them “distress” and “encouraged” them to place wagers.
As an effort to avoid these triggering moments, the BGC is recommending that football clubs refrain from promoting gambling operators or bonus offers and their “organic tweets”. This is a nod to the reality that gambling offers are ubiquitous on social media and that no one is really more than a click or two away from them on the internet anyways.
BGC officials sent a letter detailing the new code of conduct to 11 football clubs, as well as to social media operators.
In a statement reported on by SBC News, Brigid Simmonds OBE, Chairman of the BGC described the importance of the new standards saying, “Our members rightly have a zero tolerance approach to gambling by under-18s, so as an industry we are understandably concerned that children may be exposed to betting adverts on social media platforms. Our new guidelines make clear the standards expected of football clubs when they post gambling promotions on social media, and I look forward to them being put into practice as soon as possible.”
The BGC guidelines are not legally binding, but members of the BGC who wish to remain in good standing are expected to abide by them.
The post BGC ices gambling talk on football social media sites appeared first on .

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Pros Of Being A Professional Poker Player


Being a professional poker player is a daring as well as exciting decision. If you’re successful at the game and want to quit your day job to become a poker pro, it’s an enticing opportunity. However, be warned: Poker strategies and rules are difficult to work, that isn’t for everyone. If you consider taking a risk to become a professional poker player, you should please ensure that it is an educated choice. 
Here are some pros of becoming a professional poker player that might encourage you to take the next step! 
Professionally Pursuing What You Love
One of the most prevalent desires in the world is to do something that you love professionally. For anyone in the poker community saying that there’s profit in this, they’re certainly not doing it only for the money. They love the game and have passion for it. For those who don’t have that, must understand that it is a skill game and requires practice to get better. This is what encourages them to put in the research time required to excel and achieve success through the downtrends.
Also Read: Advantages of Becoming a Professional at Poker
Self Determination And Versatility
Poker players set their own schedules which is a great thing for any professional in any field of work or sport. To stave off poker exhaustion and keep you going, getting this independence will go a long time away. Also, you’ll only be accessible to yourself. Versatility is something that is quite limited in a number of professions nowadays and there’s nothing quite like poker tournaments when it comes to versatility. That’s not to suggest, of course, that it’ll be straightforward. The assumption is that when you do so, no-one will be blowing down your neck.
Earning Big Money
There is still a lot of profit to be gained by playing online poker if you can achieve a high level of experience. In terms of rake and playing rewards, there have been a few improvements in the market in recent years that have limited online poker’s profitability, but it is still possible to obtain a decent income playing poker game. Getting in and getting out of micro stakes is one of the greatest obstacles facing emerging online pros these days. In present-day games, the high rake and low rakeback eat away at the winnings of a micro stakes player, making it difficult for them to achieve a good score overall.
On the other hand, live poker has been and is likely still a highly lucrative enterprise for professional players. The live player average is much lower than the online player estimate. This may be because, in casinos, live poker is practiced and thus encourages individuals who play poker to bargain instead of because they are successful at it. Or it could be because of live poker’s social aspect. It’s a mix of both, perhaps. 
For more interesting articles about poker or poker news, keep reading PokerShots! 

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Jalen Green leads Ignite to 4-0 start in NBA G League

Team Ignite’s Jalen Green. G LEAGUE PHOTO
MANILA, Philippines — Jalen Green sustained his torrid start to lead Team Ignite’s comeback win over the Iowa Wolves, 97-90, in the NBA G League Tuesday at AdventHealth Arena in Florida.
The 6-foot-6 Fil-American fired a career-high 22 points as Ignite stretched its unbeaten run to four games. He has now scored at least 20 points for the third straight game.
Green, who also collected six rebounds and five assists, capped off his solid outing with a layup for a 96-90 lead with 12.2 seconds left.

#GLeagueIgnite remains undefeated at 4-0
take a look inside its hot start as told by head coach Brian Shaw pic.twitter.com/MVggNlGLR7
— NBA G League (@nbagleague) February 16, 2021

Ignite trailed by as many as 11 early in the fourth quarter before going on a 25-7 run to take control of the game.
Donta Hall added 12 points, 16 rebounds and four blocks for Ignite, which still awaits the arrival of Filipino center Kai Sotto.
UNCERTAIN
However, coach Brian Shaw said he doesn’t have a say yet on whether Sotto will be able to play right away when he returns.
“That’ll be something that will be determined by the people that are above my paygrade,” said Shaw during a media availability.
Sotto came back to the Philippines hoping to suit up for the national team in the third and final window of the 2021 Fiba Asia Cup Qualifiers in Doha this month.
But the tournament was postponed again with the Philippines back as the host.
The 7-foot-3 Sotto is expected to rejoin Ignite in the G League’s bio-secure facility in Orlando as soon as he clears strict quarantine measures.

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Chot on TNT coaching return: ‘It’s not going to be easy’

FILE PHOTO– Returning TNT coach Chot Reyes. TRISTAN TAMAYO
MANILA, Philippines — Chot Reyes is keeping his expectations modest ahead of his second tour of duty as head coach of TNT.
Reyes is the franchise’s winningest coach, having led Talk ’N Text to four titles during his first stint from 2008 to 2012.
“It’s not going to be easy. I know a lot of fans are saying a lot of good things, but this is not going to be a walk in the park, it’s not going to be an instant thing,” said Reyes on Monday in an episode of The Game.

THE GAME | February 15, 2021
THE GAME | February 15, 2021 | 7:30PM• Chot Reyes Returns as Head Coach of TNT Tropang Giga• The Next Chapter: Coach Chot Reyes & Coach Tim Cone• Coach Tim Breaks Down Race for NBA MVP: LeBron James, Luka Doncic, & Nikola Jokic
Posted by One Sports+ on Monday, February 15, 2021

Reyes, 57, replaced head coach Bong Ravena and active consultant Mark Dickel at the helm.
“I just want to make sure that we manage expectations because the competition as we all know is very, very tough and everyone is getting better,” added the eight-time PBA champion and five-time Coach of the Year. “So you know, simply changing the coach is not a magic formula, it’s not automatic. You really, really have to work like we’ve never worked before.”
But the pressure will be on Reyes, who will be tasked to end the Tropang Giga’s long title drought.
TNT hasn’t won a title since the 2015 Commissioner’s Cup under Jong Uichico.
Led by Roger Pogoy, Ray Parks and Jayson Castro, the Tropang Giga made as far as the finals in last season’s Philippine Cup bubble where they lost to the Barangay Ginebra Gin Kings in five games.

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Daniil Medvedev Finds Another Way of Playing Professional Tennis


At 23, Rublev is two years younger than Medvedev and grew up playing junior tournaments against him in Russia. For a long time Rublev, seeded No. 8, and Karen Khachanov, 24, the third member of Russia’s latest golden generation, were better than Medvedev. The rise for Medvedev came in 2018 and 2019, when he nearly beat Rafael Nadal in the 2019 United States Open final.“He reads the game really well,” Rublev said of Medvedev. “It’s amazing, the patience he has to stay so long in the rallies, to not rush, to take the time, because in the end these little details, they make him who he is.”Russia is the only country with two players in the top 10. Khachanov gives it three in the top 20. Aslan Karatsev, 27, another Russian ranked No. 114, came out of nowhere to make the quarterfinals here in his first Grand Slam tournament.Medvedev comes into the quarterfinal on perhaps the best roll of his career. He has won 18 consecutive singles matches. He won the ATP Tour finals in London in November, pulling off the nifty trick of beating the world’s top three players — Novak Djokovic, Nadal and Dominic Thiem — in a single tournament. For Russia at the ATP Cup, he beat Alexander Zverev of Germany, a 2020 U.S. Open finalist, in a tight, three-set match in the semifinal round.Medvedev spent his early childhood in Moscow and played few sports other than tennis growing up. He worshiped Russia’s last golden generation, which included Marat Safin and Yevgeny Kafelnikov, who were in their prime when he was a young child. He moved to France to train as a teenager and became fluent in English and French.Medvedev could be heard screaming at his coach, Gilles Cervara of France, in French during his third-round match against Filip Krajinovic of Serbia, as he frittered away a two-set lead before recovering to win the final set, 6-0.

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The ‘Most Opening Day starts’ quiz


In 2020, Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers were able to exorcise their postseason demons. The franchise won its first World Series Championship in more than three decades, while Kershaw was able to shed the ‘can’t win the big one’ label that had previously followed him around his entire career. Now, with his legacy firmly intact, the three-time Cy Young Award winner is openly contemplating his future. In a recent interview with the Los Angeles Times, Kershaw, who is in the last year of his current contract, had this to say when asked about an extension, “I don’t know. Honestly, I wish I had an answer.” Surely, that’s not the response the Dodgers faithful were hoping to hear, but at least the team brought in some reinforcements for when No. 22 does ultimately decide to hang ’em up. Which brings us to today’s quiz of the day. Kershaw has not gotten the ball for L.A. on Opening Day the last two years, but prior to that, he was a fixture on the mound, having pitched in eight consecutive Opening Days from 2011 to 2018, a franchise record. So with that in mind, how many of the pitchers with the most Opening Day starts for every MLB franchise can you name in five minutes?Good luck!

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Serena hurdles Halep test to reach Australian Open semifinals

FILE PHOTO: Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 16, 2021. Serena Williams of the U.S. celebrates winning her quarterfinal match against Romania’s Simona Halep. REUTERS/Loren Elliott
MELBOURNE—Serena Williams came through a huge test of her Australian Open title credentials to reach the last four at Melbourne Park for the ninth time with a 6-3 6-3 victory over Simona Halep in a high quality quarterfinal on Tuesday.
The 39-year-old went toe-to-toe with the Romanian second seed over 80 minutes on Rod Laver Arena before she was finally able to move to within two victories of a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title.
Williams hit some ferocious forehands and moved around the court with a freedom that she has not enjoyed for a good while to set up a semifinal meeting against in-form Japanese third seed Naomi Osaka.

“It’s so good to see someone [@naomiosaka] that is so inspiring on both things.” 💙
Even 7️⃣x #AusOpen champion @serenawilliams draws inspiration from her #AO2021 semifinal opponent 🙌 pic.twitter.com/yzASWfp1Gn
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) February 16, 2021

“I think this was the best match I have played at this tournament for sure,” Williams said after celebrating her win to the accompaniment of canned applause as Melbourne’s coronavirus lockdown kept the fans away for a fourth day.
“I knew it had to be going up against the number two in the world. I had to be better and I was, so I’m excited.”
If any match at this year’s tournament deserved a crowd, it was this. There were nine breaks of serve as two great competitors punched and counter-punched over lengthy rallies.
Williams was always in front in the first set but needed to dig deep to wrestle back the momentum after Halep took a 3-1 lead in the second.
Eventually, however, Williams broke for 4-3 after a 13-shot rally where she showed incredible athleticism to get to a couple of shots that would have defied most players.
Seven minutes later, she wrapped up the contest with a huge forehand, her 24th winner.
Williams has not landed one of the game’s major prizes since her seventh title at Melbourne Park in 2017, with Halep’s victory in the 2019 Wimbledon final denying her one opportunity to match Margaret Court’s record.
After gaining a measure of revenge for that defeat, Williams has the chance to avenge another when she plays Osaka, who won the 2018 U.S. Open final between the two.
“She’s a great player on the court and an inspirational person off it,” said Williams.
“I feel this is a great opportunity for me just to do my best in the first Grand Slam of the year.”

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Meet America’s 63rd National Park


As Americans continue to weather the pandemic, the $2.3 trillion coronavirus relief and spending bill passed by the federal government in December brought an unexpected and lasting gift: a new national park.The 5,593-page spending package included a raft of provisions authorizing little-known projects — the construction of the Teddy Roosevelt Presidential Library in North Dakota, for one — and giving lawmakers a chance to advance a variety of long-delayed initiatives. Among them was the elevation of the New River Gorge, in southern West Virginia, to the status of Yellowstone, Yosemite and the country’s other most renowned outdoor spaces. The designation of the area — roughly 72,000 acres of land flanking 53 miles of the gorge — as a national park and preserve creates the 63rd national park in the United States and completes a multigenerational effort, started in the mid-twentieth century, to transform a tired industrial area into a national landmark.“Towards the end of this year, with these big bills coming down, I decided to strike,” said Shelley Moore Capito, a Republican and the state’s junior senator, who, along with Senator Joe Manchin III, a Democrat, introduced the New River Gorge legislation in 2019.“This was the right opportunity,” she said.A draw for rafters, kayakers and other outdoor enthusiastsThe gorge and its surroundings have been prized for decades as one of southern West Virginia’s more spectacular natural places.In 1963, the West Virginia House of Delegates passed a resolution seeking to designate the New River Gorge as a “national playground,” preparing to send the proposal to President John F. Kennedy, whose primary campaign was lifted substantially through support from West Virginia voters. But momentum to create a national recreation area stalled after Mr. Kennedy’s assassination later that year.Though the gorge remained a curiosity among rafters and outdoor enthusiasts, the area only received federal protection from the Interior Department in 1978, when it was designated a national river.Now, the outdoor offerings in the gorge have come to define the area as a premier destination for adventure sports in the East.The New River plunges 750 feet over 66 miles, resulting in long stretches of violent rapids that can reach a class five level, generally considered the most difficult that can be navigated by white-water boaters. (Licensed outfitters operate in several towns near the river, providing rentals and tours for rafting and kayaking.)The canyon walls, which soar as high as 1,600 feet, offer miles of cliffs that rank among the best in the East Coast for rock climbing. Sheer faces in the gorge made of robust Nuttall sandstone provide both traditional and sport-climbing routes across the difficulty spectrum.Bike routes are scattered throughout the park on both sides of the river, with options for both technical mountain biking and more casual pedaling along former railroad beds.A glimpse back in timeAccording to the National Park Service, geologists believe the New River — its name a misnomer used by early American explorers who often assigned the same name to any river they came upon for the first time — was a segment of the preglacial Teays River. This larger river, which traversed much of the current Ohio River watershed, was later diverted and broken up by glaciers. The age of the Teays is uncertain, but fossil evidence suggests it could be as much as 320 million years old, leaving its remnant, the New River, as quite possibly the second oldest river in the world.Beyond the millions of years of geological history on display, the gorge is also filled with signs of the region’s heritage as a major coal production hub.Miners once capitalized on the easy access to rich deposits of high-quality bituminous coal in the canyon, where the river had already shorn through hundreds of feet of rock. Especially after the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway linked the New River coal fields to markets in 1873, dozens of boom towns popped up along the river’s edge, thriving well into the 1920s.In 1963, a coal mine was still operating in the gorge, said Dave Arnold, a state tourism commissioner who operated a rafting company for more than 40 years.“In ’76 or ’77, if you were in my boat, we’d have been floating down the river and I would have been showing you, ‘here’s an old coal tipple, here’s the old hotel at Caperton, here’s this and that,’” he said.The demand for coal around the turn of the twentieth century was so high that towns existed every half mile along up the river, according to the Park Service. As the industry went into decline, however, by the 1950s many were already abandoned, leaving ghost towns scattered throughout the gorge. Additionally, logging during the late nineteenth century stripped vast portions of the gorge bare, clearing enormous swaths of virgin forest.The park contains the remnants of communities such as Nuttallburg and Kaymoor, which still stand near the riverbank and are accessible from points higher up. Seams of exposed coal are visible along some trails leading into the gorge and its towns, where abandoned mine portals and the foundations of coke ovens remain.Restoring an ecosystem with diverse wildlifeDespite the environmental degradation and pollution that industry unleashed, some unique ecological features make the gorge well-suited to a diverse combination of wildlife, which has slowly reappeared as time has passed.The river lies at the center of a migration corridor where plants and animals that typically range further north or south come together, including several federally endangered and threatened species, such as the Virginia big-eared bat and the Allegheny woodrat.According to Lizzie Watts, the park’s superintendent, the river itself is also notably warmer than surrounding areas, making it a popular warm-water fishing destination with more than a dozen public access points. The river is one of the premier spots for smallmouth bass fishing on the east coast, and muskellunge and walleye are common in the park today.“The next generation will have the opportunity to see what, in the last 150 years, it looks like when an area goes from being logged and mined to left alone,” Ms. Watts said. “The ecosystem has come back to full trees and mature forests.”As federal protections took effect after the Park Service began overseeing the area as a national river in 1978, wildlife has largely recovered, and many see an opportunity to showcase the region’s natural elegance.“To show off our rock climbing, our extreme sports availabilities in that area, is just really exciting,” said Ms. Capito of what she described as a “kind of wild and wonderful part of our state.” ‘The cream of the crop’The National Park Service, created in 1916, oversees more than 400 areas across the country, including national monuments, seashores and battlefields as well as parks, which together total more than 85 million acres.While the new title for New River Gorge does not fundamentally alter the area’s day-to-day operations, both lawmakers and the Park Service tend to view “national parks” as the crown jewels of the park system — a protection granted to some of the largest and most prized tracts of the country.“National Park status is usually considered like the cream of the crop,” Ms. Watts said. “But it really is just another one of those names.”The New River Gorge does not match the scale of many national parks in the western United States, where Death Valley, the Grand Canyon and Yellowstone sprawl over more than 1 million acres each.Nevertheless, officials expect the new designation to bring a substantial influx of travelers, boosted in part by a dedicated set of enthusiasts who strive to visit every national park.In typical years, around 1.3 million travelers visit the gorge, according to the Park Service’s tourism data. Based on studies of other areas that received national park status, Ms. Capito said she expects to see visitors increase by as much as 20 percent.“It does feel like the very beginning stages of transformation for the whole area,” said Becky Sullivan, the executive director of the New River Gorge Convention and Visitors Bureau. “I’ll be very, very interested to see where we are in about 10 years.”Maintaining the community and its favored pastimesAs unique outdoor attractions throughout the Appalachian region have gained more national visibility, some concern has grown over the idea of a wealthy and mobile set from out of state trampling the communities adjacent to these places.West Virginia remains the second-poorest state in the country in terms of median household income, according to data collected by the United States Census Bureau. And while tourism has brought a needed injection of wealth to areas all around the gorge, it has also changed the makeup of neighboring communities, as more people have come to visit the park or settle down near it.Interest in the natural offerings around the park has brought slow but measurable change for small towns nearby like Fayetteville. Officials say that the advent of remote work during the pandemic has only hastened a trend of properties in the area being repurposed for vacation rentals and outsiders snapping up second homes.“You cannot find a house for sale in Fayetteville, because they’re just in such high demand,” said Sharon Cruikshank, the town’s mayor. “So that definitely changed the budgeting of the town as well as the county.”When legislation was first introduced to designate the area as a national park, pushback came from some locals. Hunters have long enjoyed access to secluded sections of woods around the gorge, and with hunting prohibited in federal parks, some protested the potential loss of thousands of acres of hunting grounds.In a compromise, more than 65,000 acres of the total area were designated as a nature preserve where hunting can continue as before, and only roughly 7,000 acres directly within the canyon are officially off limits as national parkland. A provision was included to empower the park to acquire more than 3,000 acres of private land around its current boundaries as well, to expand the size of the preserve and add public hunting grounds.In a nod to tradition, the legislation also enshrines the right for visitors to continue to make use of one of the park’s most famous features — the New River Gorge Bridge — at least once a year.BASE jumping, an extreme sport in which jumpers parachute from elevated structures or cliffs, is banned in every other national park.But, since 1980, BASE jumpers have been permitted to plunge from the top of the 876-foot-high bridge and parachute down toward the river once a year, on Bridge Day, held one Saturday in October. The legislation designating the area as a national park allows that tradition to continue.As many as 100,000 people typically come to watch the jumpers plunge, according to Ms. Sullivan, providing a major boost for businesses in the region. The event has only been canceled twice, including last year because of the coronavirus.Bridge Day’s organizers advise jumpers that the only dependable way to touch down safely is to plan to land directly in the river. In normal years, hundreds do so, often multiple times that day, gliding down and softly hitting the New River’s waters.

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Clayton Kershaw: ‘I don’t know’ about playing beyond 2021


Clayton Kershaw is about to enter his 14th season in the Major Leagues, and the final season of his current three-year, $93M deal with the Dodgers.  Could it also be the final season of what will surely be a Hall Of Fame career?
“I’ll just say, I don’t know,” Kershaw told Jorge Castillo of the Los Angeles Times.  “I have no idea. I do know that I still love it and I have a blast.”
The Dodgers have yet to discuss a potential contract extension with their longtime ace, and Kershaw was again non-committal when asked if he wanted a new deal: “I don’t know.  Honestly, I wish I had an answer.”  The left-hander said his goals are simply to earn “my teammates’ respect and I just want to pitch well as long as I can.  So all that other stuff will take care of itself.”

Kershaw is still relatively young, as he doesn’t turn 33 until next month.  However, he has already dealt with a number of injury problems during his career, while pitching a combined 2522 innings in the regular season and postseason.  There’s also the fact that Kershaw’s baseball bucket list could hardly be more complete now that he has finally won a World Series and erased some past struggles in the playoffs.  Kershaw’s championship ring is the latest addition to a resume that includes three NL Cy Young Awards, eight All-Star appearances, the 2014 NL MVP Award, and a reputation as one of the best pitchers of all time.
Kershaw admitted that he “wasn’t as enthused to get back going again” for his winter training regiment in the wake of the Dodgers’ title, though he sees it as more of a change in motivation rather than a lack thereof.  “It’s a great problem to have,” he explained.  “I think every offseason in the past it’s been, ’I just want to get this done. I just want to do it, do it, do it.’  And there’s this passion and it just constantly builds and builds and builds.  And now the pressure is just because we have a great team and we’re supposed to win.  That’s awesome.”

As Castillo noted, the fact that the interview at Kershaw’s home even took place represented a shift in the left-hander’s perspective, given how Kershaw has been very private over the years.  Kershaw and his wife Ellen have three children, and while the family often traveled together in pre-COVID times, Ellen Kershaw said that “it’s not as easy to pull [the kids] out of school and get us to L.A. during the season” as the children get older.
One possible bridge between family and baseball endeavors would be a free agent deal with the Rangers next offseason — Kershaw’s family lives in his hometown of Dallas throughout the offseason.  It isn’t clear, however, whether Kershaw would consider the Rangers or any other team besides the Dodgers if he does continue his career, as he stressed how much he has enjoyed playing in Los Angeles.

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