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The second round of the men’s NCAA Tournament begins Saturday, with the Sweet 16 finishing up on Sunday. Championship contenders like Gonzaga, Duke and Arizona got through their first games, while No. 15 seed Saint Peter’s became an early tournament darling with its upset of powerhouse Kentucky. On the women’s side, top overall seed South Carolina cruised in its opening game with a record-setting rout, while player of the year candidate Caitlin Clark helped Iowa win a rout. The women’s first round concludes Saturday, followed by second-round games Sunday and Monday to determine the Sweet 16. The first two days of action in the men’s and women’s NCAA Tournaments saw their share of bracket-busting upsets and memorable moments.
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The Caribbean island of Aruba drops its remaining COVID-related travel restrictions Saturday. Aruba will no longer require a negative coronavirus test or proof of vaccination for entry. Travelers will still need to complete an embarkation/disembarkation card before arrival.Previously, Aruba required a negative coronavirus test, proof of full vaccination or proof of recovery for travelers. The announcement comes at the tail end of a surge that spiked in January. But the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns the country still has “very high” COVID levels and advises against travel to Aruba. The country joins others in rolling back restrictions ahead of summer travel.
At long last spring is finally here. The vernal (aka spring) equinox – the beginning of astronomical spring in the Northern Hemisphere – occurs Sunday. The equinox is the moment the sun’s rays shine directly on Earth’s equator. Sunday will be one of two days out of the year – the other being the autumnal equinox in September – when the Earth’s axis is tilted neither toward nor away from the sun, resulting in roughly 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness almost everywhere on Earth. It’s also one of only two days each year when almost every spot on Earth – except the poles – experiences a sunrise at due east and a sunset at due west. And for the folks down under in the Southern Hemisphere, it’s the autumnal equinox this Sunday, marking the first day of autumn.
Prince William and Duchess Kate are visiting three Commonwealth countries this weekend – Belize, Jamaica and The Bahamas – on behalf of Queen Elizabeth II and her Platinum Jubilee year marking an unprecedented 70 years on the British throne. It’s their first joint official overseas tour since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, which shut down most royal travel. After two years of the pandemic, Will and Kate are “very much looking forward to the visit,” Kensington Palace said. The three countries Will and Kate will visit are among the 15 in the Commonwealth (including the United Kingdom) for which the queen remains head of state.
Australian professional cyclist Lachlan Morton aims to raise $50,000 Saturday for Ukrainian refugees. The 30-year-old ultra-endurance rider departs from Munich for a nonstop journey through the Czech Republic and Poland, ultimately ending the 1,063-kilometer trip at the Ukrainian border at Krakovets. Morton said he was inspired to take on the epic ride during a recent race, when he learned Russia had invaded Ukraine while he was having breakfast with a Ukrainian teammate. While he doesn’t describe himself as “overly political,” Morton said the news of the war has been impossible to ignore – so he’s doing what he can to help the nearly 6.5 million people who have been displaced by the invasion.
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