A traditional Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings should cost a little less this year because prices for turkey and cranberries are down.
That's the word from Purdue University, which tracks commodity prices and calculates the annual cost of holiday meals. Agriculture economist Corrine Alexander says retail grocery prices are down about 2.5 percent from a year ago, partly because of the recession and partly because transportation/fuel costs are lower than last year.
Supplies of turkeys are good this year, and wholesale prices are running about five cents per pound cheaper than this time last year. A bumper crop of cranberries means cranberry prices are edging downward. Potato prices are mixed because of weather -- sweet potato prices are up because Hurricane Gustav hurt Louisiana's crop, but white potato prices are down 10 percent because of abundant supplies.
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- CNN fathead host Lou Dobbs has quit his job because he wants to take a more active role in the "national conversation." This used to be code for running for higher office, but now it can also mean running around the country, raking in speaker fees, without ever actually running for anything. Lot of parallels here to Sarah Palin, who also quit her regular job to cash in on her popularity with the right-wingers. Anybody else see a Palin-Dobbs ticket for 2012? Kodiak Barbie and Spud, out there on the hustings, winking and stumbling and carping about illegal immigrants. Lordy.
- Sports: The 49ers play the Bears tonight as the NFL kicks off its Thursday schedule on NFL Network. Both teams are struggling, but Niners coach Mike Singletary promises fireworks against his old team.
- Weekend Weather is forecast to be nice after another passing storm front brings a chance of showers on Friday. Should be dry on Saturday night for ArtHop, sunny with a high in the upper 60s on Sunday.
- The Redding Library is celebrating National Gaming Day on Saturday, hosting board games and video games from noon to 4 p.m. For more info, call 245-7250.
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