Mysterious Man from UND Seen in Hanger

Prescott, AZ

Just one day after news broke of possible foul play, new evidence has emerged in the spygate fiasco. PGNN senior correspondent, Viktoria Ligorski has blown the lid off this developing story with just the simple shutter of her camera phone. Viktoria caught the man in the camouflage hat closely inspecting a competitors airframe.

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Pictured here in the disguise of a backwards facing headlamp hat, a trusty Coleman flashlight held in the firm grip of his right hand, and a Casio timepiece drawn tight around the left wrist.

This nauseating new evidence sheds new light on an already intriguing story. The motives behind the aircraft pat down are still unknown. When approached for questioning, he slipped away into the night, avoiding the sharp rocks and undulating terrain of the Arizona high desert under the guided light of his headlamp. 

The events are still under investigation and no ruling has come down from the commissioner at this time, however the case seems to be gaining steam as the layers of this complex plot are unraveled.

Aphrodite Air Quality Update

Prescott, AZ

This morning Aphrodite released the first air quality readings to the general public. The report is based on the AQI (Air Quality Index), a universal index for reporting daily air quality.

Today’s AQI is 55.

The report is rather shocking as the baseline AQI at the beginning of last week was a mere 15. It seems that the event is already having a strong environmental impact after only a couple of days.

Understanding the AQI

EPA has assigned a specific value to each AQI category to make it easier for people to understand quickly whether air pollution is reaching unhealthy levels in their communities.

      
Good 0 to 50 Air quality is considered satisfactory, and air pollution poses little or no risk
Moderate 51 to 100 Air quality is acceptable; however, for some pollutants there may be a moderate health concern for a very small number of people who are unusually sensitive to air pollution.
Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups 101 to 150 Members of sensitive groups may experience health effects. The general public is not likely to be affected.
Unhealthy 151 to 200 Everyone may begin to experience health effects; members of sensitive groups may experience more serious health effects.
Very Unhealthy 201 to 300 Health warnings of emergency conditions. The entire population is more likely to be affected.
Hazardous 301 to 500 Health alert: everyone may experience more serious health effects

UND Connected in Possible Spygate Scandal

Prescott, AZ

The Region I/II competition kicked off today with an interesting surprise. During the opening ceremonies of the weeks events PGNN correspondent, Beverly Beltmeyer caught two UND representatives among the clamoring teams and fans as they shared greetings and welcomes.

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The two men, seen pictured here together, with what appears to be a video recording device, were trying to blend into the crowd under the disguise of a camouflage hat and a blue Nike polo shirt. While they did their best to look just like any other NIFA judge here at competition, Bev was convinced one of the men looked awfully familiar. In what may turn out to be the years most defining moment in journalism, Beltmeyer dug up this photo from the PGNN archives.

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In this security camera photo from an incident in 2013, involving a jacket, we see the same perpetrator fleeing the scene of the crime.

As it seems, UND appears to be trying to gain an upper hand in competition. As Beverly tried to approach the two men they swiftly left the facility and she was unable to procure a statement. As the event continues to be investigated, it may turn out to be the greatest scandal of the modern era.

The rule violation that is in question here today comes from the NIFA Constitution & Bylaws (article 9): “Any use by any club at any time, from the start to the finish of any competition, practice, or organized team activity, in which such club is a participant, of any communications or information-gathering equipment, other than Polaroid-type cameras or field telephones, shall be prohibited, including without limitation videotape machines, telephone tapping, or bugging devices, or any other form of electronic devices that might aid a team during a competition.”

It will be interesting to see what the investigation reveals in the upcoming days.

Share your thoughts with us!

Inclement Weather, Event Cancellations Possible

NOAA today released brand new climate models for the northern Arizona region, prompting some forecasters to issue warnings of wintery conditions, extreme cold, and possible tornadic activity. Sources close to PGNN indicate that the models may have been delayed in their release, possibly due to NOAA’s fear of public backlash in response to the bad news.

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Prof. Dr. Gary Peters, head of NOAA’s Atlanta office, noted that the impending collision of two cold fronts over the southwestern US had severe implications for much of the country, especially those areas located at higher elevations. “What we have here is a storm system the likes of which haven’t been seen in 20 or maybe 30 years. This NIFA Vortex, as I’ve dubbed it, will likely deposit upwards of 3-4 inches of snow throughout Arizona and into New Mexico. This is a red flag warning if I’ve ever seen one.”

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Local authorities have advised residents to stock up on supplies and prepare for the harsh weather, warning them to stay indoors and avoid travel unless absolutely necessary. Peters warned that travel during the coming storm would be “certain doom” and “utterly impossible.” He continued, “if you’re currently in northern Arizona, you aren’t going anywhere.”

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Stay tuned for more updates and weather tips from PGNN.

Competition Nears, Environmental Concerns Loom

 

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Prescott, AZ

As flying practice continues to increases around KPRC, local environmentalists are beginning to wonder about the environmental impact of the competition event. The group, known as Aphrodite are growing concerned that with the added air traffic over the next week that air quality will suffer heavily from the increase of toxic greenhouse gasses released from the engines of the participating aircraft. While the poor air quality may only be temporary, there still could be lingering side effects of the competition well into the city’s future. Aphrodite suggest that some of these side effects could include acid rain, agricultural patterns, wildlife migration, and ultimately continue to contribute to global climate change. Aphrodite is concerned those side effects may cause problems with the javelina population of Northern Arizona and depending on upper air currents acid rain may reach as far as Phoenix, 90 miles south and disrupt many of the states lettuce and hay farms.

Aphrodite’s public relations spokesperson, Kal Varsen is urging residents to stay inside over the next week and cut down on driving as much as possible to help better the air quality. They are also recommending that if going outside is absolutely necessary pets and residents are strongly encouraged to wear protective masks to protect their lungs from the harmful air particulates.

Aphrodite was seen leaving the airport today after setting up an air quality lab on the nearby Antelope Hills golf course near the boundary of the airport.

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Aphrodite will be monitoring air quality all week long and publishing a daily air quality report which you can find right here from the PGNN.

***BREAKING NEWS*** Blast Rocks Apartment Complex Days before Regional Compitition

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Prescott, AZ

Just two days before the Region one and two NIFA competition kicks off and on the eve of Peyton Manning’s Super Bowl meltdown, a series of blasts rocked a near by apartment complex. The blasts which are being investigated by local authorities are reported to have been harmless in nature but still struck fear into the apartment residents. The incident raises more questions about the quality of security at the high profile event. Police Chief, Petr Grayson stated during an exclusive interview with the PGNN that “While the situation is contained and no casualties were sustained the incident needs to be taken seriously as it may have exposed holes in the events security.”

While many of the competing teams have already arrived it is still possible that this event could lead to some teams pulling out of the competition. Security has been a hot topic for local residents leading up to the competition, the removal of traffic security cameras on many of the towns primary roads three months ago raised concerns in the local community about the commitment to protecting the competitors from vigilantes.

While this does seem like an isolated attack so far it is noteworthy that Golden Eagles Captain, Kyle “Cheese” Thannisch is a resident of the apartment complex and in a text message to a PGNN correspondent stated that this behavior so close competition “really curdles his cheese.” Team member Zach Sargent was not available for comment which makes us here at the PGNN wonder where he was during the happenings.  

 

Guinness Book of World Records Arrives at SAFECON

/// FRESH OFF THE PRESS ///  PRNewsWire > DUBLIN, OH – Officials from the Guinness Book of World Records arrived today at the scene of the 2013 NIFA SAFECON event.  Their arrival, the first time the Guinness Book staff has been to a SAFECON, leaves not only NIFA but the competitors in shock.  “Surely, my message drop skills are bar none, but I’m not sure they’re world-record worthy,” a competitor told PGNN.  “I mean, what record are we going for here?  World’s worst guy to girl ratio?”

NIFA’s Press Department was busy highlighting the arrival of the Guinness Book staff to the sponsors and team advisors during their morning briefings.  “I don’t want to alarm anyone, but something big just came to this event, and we’re not sure exactly what it is, but we’re asking for everyone’s support in welcoming the Guinness Book of World Records staff with open arms and big smiles,” said NIFA Marketing Director Todd Abrams.  “We’re not sure what records we’re going for here, but this could be the biggest news to NIFA since the development of the ‘Wally Stick’.”

PGNN has spoken with Mark Hathingsway, the Guinness spokesperson on the scene at SAFECON, regarding their arrival.  “While we can’t make anything official until the awards banquet, we believe that the 2013 SAFECON is home to the world’s largest collection of Citizen EcoDrive Skyhawk watches with E6B bezels.  So far, we’ve seen a good number of these timepieces, but we’re not going to count them until the banquet.  We figure most people might forego the crowd-favorite timepiece until a more formal setting.  That, and we’ve heard locally-famous Wendy’s is catering the event, and we’re huge Baconator fans.”

The Skyhawk, Citizen’s latest entry into the pilot watch world, comes from a formidable history of chronographs.  The Navihawk, the predecessor to the Skyhawk, set the standard in pilot watches by not only incorporating the ability to display “zulu time” (a time standard favored by aeronautical professionals), but it also contained an E6B, or an aviation slide rule, along the bezel of the watch.  “The E6B started out as a joke,” says Heinz Zimmerman, chief engineer at Citizen.  “My boss Jens came to me with at the time we all thought was a stupid idea to put a calculator on a watch.  Little did he know our little joke became the foundation for a legacy of pilot chronographs that many attempt to imitate, yet never master.”

“I’ve had my Skyhawk since my first flight in a Skyhawk,” explains Golden Eagles Flight Team Coach Alex Tamsing.  “A wise airline captain once told me that all I needed to succeed in aviation was a huge watch, these aviator sunglasses, and a cunning memory of all the lines from the movie Top Gun.”  The Skyhawk line continues to exceed consumer demands by not only integrating Citizen’s innovative Ecodrive solar powered technologies, but also the latest in atomic timekeeping protocols, making the Skyhawk the most technologically advanced timepiece in it’s class.  “Plus, it helps with the ladies,” says Tamsing.  Other Golden Eagles team members were quick to say the contrary in regards to Tamsing’s ability to win over the opposite sex with such an impressive chronograph.  “It’s no Breitling,” said coach Chris Dolly.

The Guinness Book staff were also going to comment on a record-potential number of Top Gun references, but due to the latest litigation between Paramount Pictures and NIFA, refuse to bring up the alleged record.  “We’re not here to interfere with on-going litigation,” says Hathingsway.  “Too bad too.  Would have been an easy record for sure.”

NIFA Hosts Annual Talent Show

Columbus, OH – Contestants and judges alike were thrilled and delighted by the many talents on display at the Ohio Union this morning. Acts included singing, dancing, stand-up comedy, and one unfortunate reference to the 1984 movie Top Gun. The reference was greeted by widespread groans throughout the audience, which is on edge after being warned about possible legal action from Paramount Pictures relating to unlicensed use of images and quotes from the movie.

Aside from the aforementioned faux pas, the event went off without a hitch, with some groups even receiving demands for encore performances. “Oh, it was just awesome,” said one competitor. “I was hoping to get a little study time in before the E6B event started, but this was way more fun.” Others were a bit more critical of the performances, with another student complaining, “it’s ridiculous that people still make references to Top Gun, considering what a terrible film it is. I really did enjoy UND’s rousing rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody though. I had no idea their coaches had such tremendous vocal range!”

NIFA is reported to be considering ticket sales for next year’s event, based on the overwhelming demand for seating.

NIFA Hosts 1st Annual Correspondents Dinner

Columbus, OH – PGNN correspondents were treated to an evening of laughs, courtesy of the NIFA executive council.  The event was held at the luxurious Ohio Union, and featured notable guests such as Jared Testa, chief landing judge for the 2013 competition.  Proceeds from the evening were donated to local Goodwill stores, which had been inexplicably emptied during the week leading up to competition.

“It was really a lovely evening,” said PGNN sports correspondent Chris Dolly.  “I always look forward to Dominic (Landolfi) and his stand-up routine, and he certainly didn’t disappoint.”  In a  delightful twist on their usual roles, competition judges took the opportunity to poke fun at the press and earned some genuine laughs from the crowd of over 500.

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Competition events begin today, so stay tuned for updates throughout the day.

Paramount Pictures Arrives at SAFECON to Fight Copyright Violations

/// BREAKING NEWS /// DUBLIN, OH – In a statement made to PGNN this afternoon, Paramount Pictures intends on attending entire SAFECON event this year to dispute potential copyright violations.  Aaron Matthews, head of the copyright violation enforcement section of Paramount, tells PGNN “We’ve received many anonymous tips that the competitors and staff at SAFECON typically use our original material, against all guidance and disclaimers we’ve added to the beginning of all our feature films.  Some of these tips came with links to YouTube videos, PowerPoint presentations, and even some recordings from LiveAtc.net.”

Mark Jacobs, Public Relations for NIFA, comments on the news, “NIFA has made it clear in the past that any use of copyrighted material cannot bear any association to the NIFA organization, our member schools, our sponsors, volunteers, or competitors.  NIFA, the organization that handles all the logistics of these SAFECON tournaments, has a very limited budget when it comes to enforcing and patrolling such claims, and hopes that Paramount Pictures and NIFA can come to a resolution that is amicable for both parties.”

Chris Dolly, Golden Eagles Flight Team coach, previous competitor, and former videographer, relates to PGNN, “the affinity for the competitors to embrace the spirit of competition is elevated to an all-new level once any reference to the movie Top Gun is made.”  Top Gun, one of Paramount Pictures greatest hits, depicts a story of one Naval Aviator’s quest for success, or his struggle with his own homosexuality.  “Personally, I’m more in the ‘Iron Eagle’ camp, but there’s something about playing “Highway to the Danger Zone” that really gets the team working.”

An anonymous insider in the NIFA Board of Directors tells PGNN that “while the copyright claims are legitimate, the reality is that these references to this movie builds on the ‘esprit de corps’ of competition.  As of now, NIFA and Paramount are working on a deal to allow a limited amount of references in casual talk and having Paramount screen any NIFA-related video content before public display.  While nothing is official, we’re thinking that limiting each NIFA participant to one (1) Top Gun reference per day should satisfy their legal team.”  One (1) Top Gun reference refers to quotes, any likenesses to the movie and it’s characters and/or plot, or images used for personal reasons.

When discussing the upcoming legislation to NIFA, Maverick Flight Team Coach Scott Eisel was unable to be reached for comment, however, the team’s mascot and name “Maverick” seem to be a point of convention with the Paramount legal counsel.  Stay tuned to PGNN for the latest in this legal issue.