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May 27, 2018

Blackstone in talks to buy Willis Tower for $1.5 billion

Willis Tower, Chicago’s tallest building, may soon have an equally big owner: Blackstone Group, the world’s largest private equity real estate owner.

New York-based Blackstone has a preliminary agreement to pay almost $1.5 billion for Willis Tower, according to a person familiar with its plans. Blackstone representatives have been visiting the building to perform due diligence on the 110-story icon, and it is looking to buy the West Loop tower for one of its funds…

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Blackstone in talks to buy Willis Tower for $1.5 billion

Liberty Hall Capital Partners Selects iLEVEL for Portfolio Monitoring

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–

iLEVEL, the cloud-based software provider to the private capital market, announced today that Liberty Hall Capital Partners has selected the iLEVEL Private Capital Data Platform to streamline their portfolio data collection process and enhance their reporting capabilities. Liberty Hall is a private equity firm focused exclusively on investments in businesses serving the global aerospace and defense industry.

“As Liberty Hall continues to grow, we are confident iLEVEL will be an invaluable asset to track metrics and report to our investors in a timely, consistent, and transparent manner,” said Rowan G.P. Taylor, founding Partner of Liberty Hall. “We recognize the importance of transparency when monitoring our assets, both for our own investment purposes and for investor reporting. We look forward to implementing the iLEVEL Private Capital Data Platform.”

iLEVEL grants managers of private capital the ability to do more with their data and meet the increased demands for investor reporting. Funds can streamline their data collection process and store their information in a central repository, which can be accessed via the web, through an iPad or in existing excel models. iLEVEL can optimize portfolio performance, demonstrate value creation, and more quickly run valuations.

“iLEVEL is transformational for private capital managers of all sizes,” said Kevin Black, CEO of iLEVEL. “We are thrilled to sign Liberty Hall as a client and look forward to helping them expand their business through our platform.”

The number of firms using iLEVEL has doubled in the past year and includes alternative investment firms of varying sizes that employ a wide range of investment strategies including Private Equity, Real Estate, Credit and Venture Capital. Leading LPs and Funds of Funds are also adopting iLEVEL. More than 5,500 iLEVEL users span the globe, tracking over a billion data points across 11,500 portfolio companies.

About Liberty Hall Partners

Liberty Hall Capital Partners is a private equity firm focused exclusively on investments in businesses serving the global aerospace and defense industry. Liberty Hall’s principals have a 20-plus year history of working together and have led the investment of over $2 billion in equity capital in businesses serving multiple segments of the aerospace and defense industry and complementary industrial markets. Liberty Hall develops actionable investment strategies for attractive segments of the aerospace and defense industry and then partners with entrepreneurs and management teams to acquire leading businesses serving these segments and, together with them, develops sound, long-term strategic plans to build these businesses through a combination of strategic investments and strategic acquisitions. For more information, please visit http://www.libertyhallcapital.com/.

About iLEVEL

iLEVEL offers a market-leading cloud-based Private Capital Data Platform that empowers fund managers and investors to control information and gain actionable insights by taking data collection, investment analysis and performance reporting to a whole new level. Investors in iLEVEL include Blackstone (BX), The Carlyle Group (CG), Duff & Phelps, Hamilton Lane, Swift River Investments, and Egis Capital Partners. For more information, visit www.ilevelsolutions.com

Contact:
iLEVEL

Lauren Weiner, +1-646-747-9817

Director of Marketing


lweiner@ilevelsolutions.com

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Liberty Hall Capital Partners Selects iLEVEL for Portfolio Monitoring

Outdoors: New bass regulations are welcome

Everyone who loves striped bass hoped it would happen. With their stocks plummeting up and down the East Coast, regulations for commercial and recreational fishermen had to change. This year will see a harvest reduction of 25 percent (21.5 percent in Chesapeake Bay), but no one knows for certain if that reduction is enough.

Most likely, we’ll be allowed one fish instead of two per day. Some anglers will naturally gripe considering the modest reward for all the time and gas money spent to get into the bass. But most ethical fishermen and charter boat captains that I have talked to are deeply concerned about the future of our fishery and fully supportive of the reduction. Stripers Forever survey respondents want to ban the harvest of large, prime breeding size stripers until the resource biomass stock is healthier. They also are willing to finance a striped bass conservation stamp to pay for buying out the commercial fishery.

It’s possible that individual states may get an option to initiate a “conservation equivalent” to a one-fish, 28-inch minimum size limit. Some states could possibly, for example, maintain a two-fish limit with a different minimum size. The point is to get as many stripers as possible to breed at least once before they’re legal to harvest. Of course, the larger the female, the more eggs she can produce. We also should be protecting as many of the cows as possible because they are the basis of our sport.

Female stripers can start breeding at about age 4, when they’re around 24 inches long. Males can breed a year earlier, when they’re only about 20 inches long. While a larger, two-fish equivalent policy theoretically could help us get to the needed 25 percent reduction in striper mortality, it seems against the spirit of the effort and not our best alternative. We could definitely do better with a one-fish limit. Many here hope there will be no scheming, and that all states will uniformly implement a one-fish-per-day limit.

At this moment, there are some holdover stripers in New England waters, including big rivers like the Thames and little creeks and harbors at the Cape. But the vast majority of them are now in their offshore, warmer-than-New England wintering grounds off Virginia and North Carolina. They’re going to be vulnerable to increased commercial and recreational pressure as soon as they begin their coastal migration to spawn in Chesapeake Bay, the Delaware, and Hudson River. We won’t see them in numbers here until the first schoolies arrive in early May. The big ones should begin coming through the Canal in mid-May. Much will depend upon how cold our winter is.

Last winter was brutally long. Ocean temperatures remained very cold for a longer-than-normal period. Our stripers, which are very temperature-dependent in their movements, were consequently about two weeks late. Bet on them coming back only when we see ocean temperatures flirt with 50-55 degrees and bait fish especially squid and mackerel move in ahead of them.

Saving bluefins

New regulations are also expected for bluefin tuna stocks, which experience serious mortality as part of by-catch during commercial long-line fishing for yellowfin tuna and swordfish. The bluefins spawn in the Gulf of Mexico where they feed very little, if at all. They winter off North Carolina, where food is abundant and they can begin packing on some weight. In both areas, they’re being taken in big numbers.

While less lethal equipment changes will be implemented, what may help the stocks even more will be a closure to the swordfish and yellowfin tuna fishing once the maximum number for incidental kills of bluefins is reached. While cheating has previously been common, that may finally change significantly with the mandating of video cameras on board commercial vessels to chronicle everything that’s being caught and thrown back.

Big-time knowledge

Serious big boat saltwater fishermen willing to spend $150 to improve their knowledge and skills might want to attend Goose Hummock’s Offshore Bluewater Bash today and Saturday. At the Quincy Boston Marriott on 1000 Marriott Drive, Quincy, two days of in-depth seminars will cover techniques for bluefin tuna, sharks, swordfish, marlin and other pelagic species. Some of the leading professionals in the Northeast will be conducting the seminars, which will concentrate on waters from Stellwagen Bank, east of Chatham, south of the islands, and the offshore canyons. For tickets and information, contact Goose Hummock Shop at (508) 255-0455 or visit www.goose.com/offshore.html.

Must-see viewing

On the Water TV, available on Comcast Sportsnet at 10 a.m. Sundays and 1 p.m. Fridays, will be featuring many of our region’s hottest fishing destinations in its Season 12 this year. Monster Carp on the Blackstone River will resonate with many locals. They’ll also feature Cape Cod Stripers in the Rips, Inshore Methods for Bonito & Albies, Maine Wilderness Kayak Fishing and Top-Water Bluefin Tuna.

Calendar

◼Today-Sunday Northeast Fishing & Hunting Show. Connecticut Convention Center, Hartford. $12. Info: www.fishinghuntingexpo.com.

◼Today-Saturday Goose Hummock Offshore Bluewater Bash saltwater fishing seminar concentrating on tuna and swordfish. Quincy Boston Marriott, 1000 Marriott Drive, Quincy. $150 includes seminars both days, free beer Friday night, breakfast, and lunch Saturday. Info: www.goose.com/bluewaterbash.html.

◼Saturday-Feb. 22 New England Boat Show. Boston Convention Center, 415 Summer St., Boston. 800 boats. 100 boat seminars. $15. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Info: www.NewEnglandBoatShow.com.

◼Sunday Cutting, Mowing, and Burning for Wildlife (ruffed grouse, woodcock, New England cottontails, whip-poorwills etc.) Sterling Land Trust. Free. Speaker Rebecca DiGirolomo, MassWildlife biologist. 2:30 p.m. in the First Church Parish Hall, 6 Meetinghouse Hill Road, Sterling. Light refreshments. Info: Marion Larson, (978) 422-5165.

◼Sunday Leicester Rod & Gun meat raffles every Sunday at 2 p.m.

◼Thursday-Sunday Springfield Sportsmen’s Show. Eastern States Exposition. Info: www.osegsportsmens.com.

◼Feb. 21-22 Rutland Sportsman’s Club Annual Ice Fishing Derby. Saturday 6 a.m.-5 p.m. Weigh-in 1-5 p.m. Sunday 6 a.m.-4 p.m. Weigh-in noon-4 p.m. Open to all Massachusetts fishing license holders. All Massachusetts freshwater lakes and ponds eligible. Four prizes each for bass, yellow perch, pickerel, and pike. Headquarters at Rutland Sportsman’s Club, 75 Pleasantdale Road, Rutland, (508) 886-4721. Tickets available every day at the club after 3 p.m. and at B&A Bait and Tackle.

Contact Mark Blazis at markblazis@charter.net.

Originally posted here: 

Outdoors: New bass regulations are welcome

At Davos, it's not all about money

Read MoreBold-facers to talk crises at Davos

“It is a combination of networking, understanding the scope of views with respect to markets and the economy, and some out-of-the-box idea generation,” explained the manager of a multibillion dollar firm who is avoiding media interviews.

“Going to Davos helps generate investment ideas and manage risk by giving attendees a better understanding of the global dynamics driving markets,” added a handler for one of the prominent hedge fund managers in attendance but who is not speaking.

Of course, selling funds to the many huge institutions in Davos also factors in. There are chief investment officers from sovereign wealth funds, public pensions, insurance companies, charitable foundations and more floating around, potentially looking to allocate billions of dollars to so-called “alternative” investment funds.

At least one firm is hosting a formal event. Hedge fund investor SkyBridge Capital is putting on its annual “Wine Forum” tasting this week at the Hotel Europe’s Piano Bar, a popular Davos after-hours hangout. The event is both for client purposes and charity; this year proceeds will go to the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, whose namesake sang at Davos on Tuesday.

Speaking on stage can also help brand managers as astute economic thinkers.

Dalio, for example, will participate on a panel Thursday on the looming end to U.S.-style quantitative easing, “Ending the Experiment.” Singer will be part of a debate Wednesday on whether markets are “mispricing” geopolitical risks. And Rubenstein will talk Wednesday on the “New Growth Context” in the global economy.

Others speaking include George Soros of Soros Fund Management (now a family office) on Europe; Anthony Scaramucci of SkyBridge on economic volatility; Kenneth Hersh of NGP Energy Capital Management on fossil fuels; and Colin Teichholtz of Pine River Capital Management on shadow banking.

But the majority of managers in Davos aren’t speaking, many opting to keep a lower profile.

Hedge fund managers at WEF include Dan Loeb of Third Point, Kyle Bass of Hayman Capital Management, Frank Brosens of Taconic Capital, Alan Howard of Brevan Howard Investment Products, Andreas Halvorsen of Viking Global Investors, Mitch Julis and Josh Friedman of Canyon Partners, Andrew Law of Caxton Associates, Michael Martino of Mason Capital Management, Eric Mindich of Eton Park Capital Management, and David Harding of Winton Capital Management, according to WEF materials.

Private equity investors include Stephen Pagliuca of Bain Capital, Scott Kapnick of Highbridge Capital Management, Mitch Truwit of Apax Partners and Tom Speechley of Abraaj Group.

See more here: 

At Davos, it's not all about money

At Davos, it's not all about money

Read MoreBold-facers to talk crises at Davos

“It is a combination of networking, understanding the scope of views with respect to markets and the economy, and some out-of-the-box idea generation,” explained the manager of a multibillion dollar firm who is avoiding media interviews.

“Going to Davos helps generate investment ideas and manage risk by giving attendees a better understanding of the global dynamics driving markets,” added a handler for one of the prominent hedge fund managers in attendance but who is not speaking.

Of course, selling funds to the many huge institutions in Davos also factors in. There are chief investment officers from sovereign wealth funds, public pensions, insurance companies, charitable foundations and more floating around, potentially looking to allocate billions of dollars to so-called “alternative” investment funds.

At least one firm is hosting a formal event. Hedge fund investor SkyBridge Capital is putting on its annual “Wine Forum” tasting this week at the Hotel Europe’s Piano Bar, a popular Davos after-hours hangout. The event is both for client purposes and charity; this year proceeds will go to the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, whose namesake sang at Davos on Tuesday.

Speaking on stage can also help brand managers as astute economic thinkers.

Dalio, for example, will participate on a panel Thursday on the looming end to U.S.-style quantitative easing, “Ending the Experiment.” Singer will be part of a debate Wednesday on whether markets are “mispricing” geopolitical risks. And Rubenstein will talk Wednesday on the “New Growth Context” in the global economy.

Others speaking include George Soros of Soros Fund Management (now a family office) on Europe; Anthony Scaramucci of SkyBridge on economic volatility; Kenneth Hersh of NGP Energy Capital Management on fossil fuels; and Colin Teichholtz of Pine River Capital Management on shadow banking.

But the majority of managers in Davos aren’t speaking, many opting to keep a lower profile.

Hedge fund managers at WEF include Dan Loeb of Third Point, Kyle Bass of Hayman Capital Management, Frank Brosens of Taconic Capital, Alan Howard of Brevan Howard Investment Products, Andreas Halvorsen of Viking Global Investors, Mitch Julis and Josh Friedman of Canyon Partners, Andrew Law of Caxton Associates, Michael Martino of Mason Capital Management, Eric Mindich of Eton Park Capital Management, and David Harding of Winton Capital Management, according to WEF materials.

Private equity investors include Stephen Pagliuca of Bain Capital, Scott Kapnick of Highbridge Capital Management, Mitch Truwit of Apax Partners and Tom Speechley of Abraaj Group.

View the original here – 

At Davos, it's not all about money

At Davos, it's not all about the money…seriously

Read MoreBold-facers to talk crises at Davos

“It is a combination of networking, understanding the scope of views with respect to markets and the economy, and some out-of-the-box idea generation,” explained the manager of a multibillion dollar firm who is avoiding media interviews.

“Going to Davos helps generate investment ideas and manage risk by giving attendees a better understanding of the global dynamics driving markets,” added a handler for one of the prominent hedge fund managers in attendance but who is not speaking.

Of course, selling funds to the many huge institutions in Davos also factors in. There are chief investment officers from sovereign wealth funds, public pensions, insurance companies, charitable foundations and more floating around, potentially looking to allocate billions of dollars to so-called “alternative” investment funds.

At least one firm is hosting a formal event. Hedge fund investor SkyBridge Capital is putting on its annual “Wine Forum” tasting this week at the Hotel Europe’s Piano Bar, a popular Davos after-hours hangout. The event is both for client purposes and charity; this year proceeds will go to the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, whose namesake sang at Davos on Tuesday.

Speaking on stage can also help brand managers as astute economic thinkers.

Dalio, for example, will participate on a panel Thursday on the looming end to U.S.-style quantitative easing, “Ending the Experiment.” Singer will be part of a debate Wednesday on whether markets are “mispricing” geopolitical risks. And Rubenstein will talk Wednesday on the “New Growth Context” in the global economy.

Others speaking include George Soros of Soros Fund Management (now a family office) on Europe; Anthony Scaramucci of SkyBridge on economic volatility; Kenneth Hersh of NGP Energy Capital Management on fossil fuels; and Colin Teichholtz of Pine River Capital Management on shadow banking.

But the majority of managers in Davos aren’t speaking, many opting to keep a lower profile.

Hedge fund managers at WEF include Dan Loeb of Third Point, Kyle Bass of Hayman Capital Management, Frank Brosens of Taconic Capital, Alan Howard of Brevan Howard Investment Products, Andreas Halvorsen of Viking Global Investors, Mitch Julis and Josh Friedman of Canyon Partners, Andrew Law of Caxton Associates, Michael Martino of Mason Capital Management, Eric Mindich of Eton Park Capital Management, and David Harding of Winton Capital Management, according to WEF materials.

Private equity investors include Stephen Pagliuca of Bain Capital, Scott Kapnick of Highbridge Capital Management, Mitch Truwit of Apax Partners and Tom Speechley of Abraaj Group.

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At Davos, it's not all about the money…seriously

Calif. storm causes mudslides, forcing people from homes

Last Updated Dec 12, 2014 7:04 PM EST

LOS ANGELES — A soaking storm swept into Southern California, triggering several mudslides, flooding streets and cutting power to tens of thousands Friday after lashing the rest of the state with much-needed rain.

The deluge from the storm’s intense, early-morning arrival caused part of a hillside about 50 miles northwest of Los Angeles to give way.

CBS Los Angeles reporter Laurie Perez reports from Camarillo that highway barriers were brought in ahead of the storm but were unable to hold back the torrent of mud, rocks and water.

In several backyards, the muck was piled up to the roofline.

Rocks reach the roof of a home after a mudslide overtook several homes during heavy rains in Camarillo, California, Dec. 12, 2014.

Rocks reach the roof of a home after a mudslide overtook several homes during heavy rains in Camarillo, California, Dec. 12, 2014.

Reuters/Jonathan Alcorn

The force was so great that two large earthmovers used to set up barriers were swept down to the street, with one nearly buried.

“Wow, are we lucky!” said Ted Elliot, whose house was barely spared.

“We’ll be the only house on the block,” his wife, Rita, added.

Beyond the Elliots’ neighborhood in Camarillo, damage in Southern California mainly was minor, and there were no reported deaths tied to Friday’s storm.

california-storms-6.jpg

An RV sits underwater from the flooded Russian River Friday, Dec. 12, 2014, in Guerneville, Calif.

AP Photo/Eric Risberg

Los Angeles Fire Department personnel rescued two people from the storm-swollen Los Angeles River. Orange County fire officials pulled a body from a concrete flood channel, though the cause of death wasn’t clear.

While the rain was welcome, experts say California needs many more such storms to pull out of a drought lasting three years.

Of immediate concern were hillsides, stripped bare by wildfires, which loom over some neighborhoods. Though the fast-moving storm was projected to clear out east and reach Nevada and Arizona later in the day, the risk remained that sodden topsoil no longer held in place by roots could give way.

In Camarillo, where a 2013 fire blackened a hillside, mandatory evacuations were ordered for 124 homes, and some people needed help leaving because of property damage, Ventura County sheriff’s Capt. Don Aguilar said. Forty people came to an evacuation center, and two went to the hospital with minor medical issues, Red Cross spokesman Tom Horan said.

Earthen avalanches also blocked part of the Pacific Coast Highway in Ventura County. Street and freeway flooding snarled the morning commute, as did numerous accidents.

Wind-driven rain fell at the rate of 1 to 2 inches an hour, triggering some flash flooding, the National Weather Service said.

Utility crews were restoring electricity to the 50,000 customers who lost it in areas served by Southern California Edison and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power.

The storm system has been blamed for two deaths in Oregon, thousands of power outages in Washington and flooded roadways in the San Francisco Bay Area.

In San Francisco, CBS News correspondent John Blackstone reports that more than 3 inches of rain Thursday was enough to flood freeways and turn roads into rivers. More than 500 vehicle collisions were reported.

While the sun rose Friday in a dry San Francisco sky, the storm’s effects lingered in Northern California.

In Sonoma County, the Russian River was approaching flood stage and was expected to crest several feet above it by early afternoon. Officials advised residents of about 300 homes to evacuate low-lying areas.

Authorities warned of minor flooding along the Sacramento River in Tehama County and Cache Creek in Yolo County. In a subdivision east of Red Bluff, the water from a creek spilled into a bathtub and over a bed.

As the storm crept down the coast overnight, its powerful winds caused power outages around Santa Barbara. Amtrak suspended service between Los Angeles and the central coast city of San Luis Obispo. Ski resorts in the northern Sierra Nevada were hoping for 3 feet of snow once it all settles.

Meanwhile, a debris flow was sending rocks the size of golf balls and bricks down streets in suburban Glendora east of Los Angeles, the site of the devastating Colby Fire in January, police Lt. Matt Williams said. Five people were using an evacuation center but the exact number who fled their homes isn’t yet known, he said. No injuries or damage to homes were immediately reported.

Possible slides in the neighboring city of Azusa on the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains led to some evacuations.

In Orange County, sheriff’s deputies went door to door before dawn to tell residents of fire-scarred Silverado Canyon to evacuate because of rainfall predictions.

Some rejoiced in the rain. Adriana Fletcher, 39, of Huntington Beach, said her 5-, 6- and 7-year-olds were happy to see the precipitation after learning about the drought in school.

“When it started raining, my kids were like, ‘This is so cool,'” Fletcher said.

© 2014 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Calif. storm causes mudslides, forcing people from homes

Courtyard Boston Milford Encourages Guests To Shop 'Til They Drop

MILFORD, Mass., Nov. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Shoppers searching for savings this holiday season can score big and sleep well with a new package from the Courtyard Boston Milford.

The Courtyard Boston Milford entices guests traveling to the Milford area before Feb. 11, 2015, to take advantage of the new Wrentham Village Premium Outlets Shopping Package and receive deluxe accommodations with a $50 gift card to nearby Wrentham Village Premium Outlets, a VIP Coupon Book worth hundreds of dollars in additional discounts and breakfast for two at the hotel's The Bistro - Eat. Drink. Connect. For information, visit www.MilfordCourtyard.com or call 1-508-634-9500.

Whether hunting for the perfect gift for every member of the family or springing for a new winter wardrobe, travelers can make the most of their holiday shopping excursion when staying at one of the premier hotels in Milford, MA. With the new Wrentham Village Premium Outlets Shopping Package, guests can get into the giving spirit with a $50 gift card to the nearby Wrentham Village Premium Outlets, a VIP Coupon Book worth hundreds of dollars in additional discounts, breakfast for two in the hotel’s bistro and deluxe accommodations from $139 to $219 per night.

Checking gifts off everyone’s wish list this holiday season is easy for Courtyard guests. Just 15 minutes from the Blackstone River Valley hotel, the Wrentham Village Premium Outlets invites shoppers to discover their favorite designer essentials at pleasing prices. Black Friday shoppers eager to be the first in line for the hottest deals will love the hotel’s convenient access to the mall. With hundreds of specialty outlet stores including Tory Burch, Michael Kors, Kate Spade, Nike, Tommy Hilfiger Kids, Sunglass Hut and Coach, visitors will find a store for every age and interest. More than just a great collection of the finest designer labels and brands, Wrentham Village is New England’s largest outlet center.

Bargain hunters needing to refuel during their shopping spree can enjoy a libation and meal from one of Wrentham Village’s sit-down restaurants, including UNO Chicago Grill, Ruby Tuesday, Cracker Barrel and Buckhead Grill.

Following a fun-filled day of shopping, guests can relax and unwind in convenient accommodations at the Milford, MA hotel. Combining style and function, the spacious guest rooms feature warm and inviting quarters for getting comfortable. Complimentary Wi-Fi, flat-panel TVs, mini refrigerators, microwaves and coffee makers are among the many thoughtful amenities travelers can enjoy. When it’s time to get some shut-eye, thick mattress dressed with crisp linens, designer duvets and fluffy pillows will ensure sweet dreams for every guest.

Indulging in a healthy and hearty breakfast is quick and easy at The Bistro – Eat. Drink. Connect. Guests can jump start the day’s adventures with a choice of mouthwatering selections such as the thick-cut french toast, breakfast BLT and egg white frittata. Specialty Starbucks beverages are also served at The Bistro, allowing guests to treat their caffeine cravings without having to leave the hotel. 

Holiday shoppers wishing to take advantage of this special Shopping Package at one of the premier hotels in Milford, MA should book reservations online or by calling 1-800-228-9290 and using promotional code SHO.

About the Courtyard Boston Milford
The Courtyard Boston Milford at 10 Fortune Blvd. in Milford, MA, is nestled in the heart of the Blackstone River Valley, just 30 miles to downtown Boston and Providence, RI. The hotel features 4 floors with 140 rooms, 12 suites, 3 meeting rooms with 1,250 square feet of total space, The Bistro, an exercise room and indoor pool. Additional amenities include complimentary Wi-Fi. For information, visit www.MilfordCourtyard.com or call 1-508-634-9500. 

Learn more about Courtyard by Marriott and Marriott International Inc.

PHOTO CAPTION
The Courtyard Boston Milford entices holiday travelers with sleek and spacious accommodations featuring complimentary Wi-Fi and luxurious bedding. Guests traveling to the Milford area before Feb. 11, 2015, can take advantage of the new Wrentham Village Premium Outlets Shopping Package and receive deluxe accommodations with a $50 gift card to nearby Wrentham Village Premium Outlets, a VIP Coupon Book worth hundreds of dollars in additional discounts and breakfast for two at the hotel’s The Bistro – Eat. Drink. Connect. For information, visit www.MilfordCourtyard.com or call 1-508-634-9500.

CONTACT
Joey Tutela 
1-508-634-9500 
Joey.Tutela@marriott.com 

Photo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20141118/159372

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Courtyard Boston Milford Encourages Guests To Shop 'Til They Drop

State swim meet 2014

Suffering from a stomach bug Friday evening, Soldotna senior Alex Weeks had memories of the 2011 state swim meet come flooding back to her.

As a freshman three years ago, Weeks was one of several SoHi swimmers that came down with a sickness that slowed the Stars squad at just the wrong week of the year.

Saturday at the Bartlett High pool, however, Weeks held strong and helped propel the Soldotna girls to a sixth-place team finish in the team standings at the Alaska School Activities Association state swimming and diving meet. The Juneau girls won their second state title in a row with an even 100 points, 13 ahead of both Kodiak and Dimond. On the boys side, Dimond claimed its sixth-straight state title. The Lynx scored 110 points to best the 96 that Kodiak put up. The Soldotna boys finished seventh with 35 points.

The meet signaled the final competition for the seniors on the team, and after the final event of the day — the boys 400-yard freestyle relay — a cluster of SoHi swimmers gathered poolside to celebrate the moment. Some took pictures, some had pictures taken of them, and congratulatory words were exchanged, but all realized the gravity of the moment and embraced for the final time this season.

“There’s my team crying,” Weeks said, pointing to her teammates nearby. “We’ve spent a lot of time in hotel rooms with the team, and state this year was more about the team than my individual times. We got to hang out one more time.”

On a day that saw a handful of state records fall, teams and individuals were pushed to be at their best. In all, nine new state records were established during the weekend, six of them going to Kodiak swimmers, as Ila Hughes, Tahna Lindquist and Talon Lindquist took two apiece. Five of Saturday’s new state bests wiped out records that had stood since 1998 or before.

Tahna Lindquist was named the outstanding girls swimmer of the year, while Petersburg senior Abel Aulbach was named the same on the boys side.

When asked why he thought so many records were set, Soldotna coach Lucas Petersen said that it is only natural for times to drop about every generation of new swimmers.

“Everything gets faster and faster, or it should,” Petersen said. “It’s good to see some of the old marks that have been around for a while go down.”

Weeks represented the highest-placing swimmer among Peninsula athletes, taking the bronze medal in both the girls 50-yard and 100-yard freestyle races. Her time of 23.93 seconds in the 50 free lowered her own school record, but it was still only fast enough for third place, as Kodiak’s Ila Hughes erased the 16-year-old mark by .14 seconds to take the win in 23.20 seconds. It was Hughes’ third win in the event in the last four years.

“I definitely felt better in the 50 free,” Weeks said. “Going under 24 (seconds) was my goal.”

In the 100 free, Weeks had to contend with Hughes again. Hughes broke the state record in that race too, lopping .11 seconds off her own 2012 mark with a new time of 50.51 seconds.

Weeks said her sickness left her a little more exhausted than usual.

“The second 50 (yards) was pretty rough, I was definitely feeling it at the end,” Weeks said.

Weeks was able to finish the day on a strong note in the girls 400-yard freestyle relay, picking up a position on her anchor leg that resulted in a sixth-place finish.

Weeks’ teammate, Megan English, was another senior that saw her time at SoHi come to an end in the 400 free relay. English and Weeks teamed up with Portia Padilla and Rachel Davidson to finish sixth, and the two seniors were also a part of the girls 200-yard medley relay that placed fourth. Isabell Henry took the place of Davidson in the medley relay.

English qualified for the finals in two individual events Saturday — the girls 100 butterfly and the 100 backstroke, getting a top finish of fifth in the latter event with a time of 1:02.47. English took home sixth place in the 100 fly.

Coach Petersen said he was happy to see more SoHi swimmers make it to Saturday’s finals than in recent years.

“I’m glad they all got that second opportunity to swim,” Petersen said. “Especially for those seniors, they were all excited to make it to finals.”

SoHi junior David Hall led the boys with a top result of fourth in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 22.26 seconds. Hall said he was most happy with the result since fourth-place finishers at the state meet are still awarded medals.

“It was a little different racing at state with the pressure and competition,” Hall said. “It was a lot of fun … it pushes you to do better, because when you don’t come out on top, it makes you wanna do better for next year.”

Hall’s teammate Cody Watkins also qualified for the boys 50 free final, finishing a scant .09 seconds behind to finish sixth. Watkins also finished fifth in the boys 100 fly.

“Yesterday (in preliminaries) I had a bit of a bad race and he had a good race,” Hall said. “Today, I had the better race, so we both patted each other on the back and called it good.”

Hall’s younger brother, Jacob, took home a sixth-place finish in the 200 freestyle, slashing a full two seconds off his region time from a week earlier. David said the competition between him and his brother have pushed both of them to greater heights.

“Jacob’s always looking to beat his older brother, and I’m always looking to keep him from beating me,” Hall said.

Jacob Creglow also nabbed a sixth-place finish in the boys 100 breaststroke final, dropping his region time by .70 seconds with a time of 1:00.85, just over two seconds behind the state champion.

Kenai Central’s lone competitor Saturday was sophomore diver Mikaela Pitsch, who earned 313.6 points to finish sixth in the girls 1-meter diving contest. Pitsch’s finish garnered the Kardinals three points, placing them 16th among 18 total schools.

“I felt like I could’ve done better, but I’m really happy because last year, I was seventeenth, just one spot away from making it to state,” Pitsch said. “I’ve improved since last year, so it was a big accomplishment for me.”

Pitsch had to contend with one of Saturday’s record-breakers. The girls diving champion — Jami Stone from Eagle River — set a new state best of 474.70 points, crushing the 16-year-old record from Chugiak’s Alaina Patterson.

Unfazed, Pitsch said her best dive of the day came on something she has practiced many times before — the forward one full twist.

“Once I got that at the beginning of this summer, it’s always been there for me,” Pitsch said.

As an underclassmen, Pitsch said the expected nervous energy of attempting a perfect dive with so many eyes trained on her goes away as soon as she steps out onto the diving board. It’s a trait she has learned from Kenai coaches Will Hubler, Judy Lallier and Cole Gross, and one she hopes will one day carry her to a state title.

“Maybe if I can learn a higher (difficulty) dive, hopefully I can win one day,” she said. “My coaches tell me to stop overthinking it and just do what I do, and wow everybody.”

While Pitsch knows she will be around for a while, the finality eventually set in for the seniors scattered around the pool area at Bartlett. Coach Petersen, having experienced the final meet himself as a former state competitor, said the immediate impact of losing that experience will be felt initially, but the hole left behind by the current seniors will eventually be filled by the upcoming underclassmen.

“It’s definitely gonna be hard to see some of our seniors go,” Petersen said. “It’s always nice to have that fast anchor leg at the end of our relays, so it’ll be tough to replace them.”

ASAA/First National Bank

State swimming and diving championships

Final results

Girls

Team scores

1) Juneau 100; 2) tie, Kodiak and Dimond 87; 4) Chugiak 64; 5) South 43; 6) Soldotna 36. 7) West Valley 29; 8) West 25; 9) Colony 23; 10) Eagle River 18; 11) Sitka 9; 12) Ketchikan 8; 13) Valdez 7; 14) Hutchinson 5; 15) Bartlett 4; 16) North Pole 3; 16) Kenai 3; 18) Thunder Mountain 2; 18) Palmer 2.

200 medley relay — 1) Juneau (Kelly, Isaak, Ruffin, Walsh), 1:46.75 (new state record; old record 1:47.86, Juneau, 2007). 2) Dimond 1:52.34. 3) South 1:54.80. 4) Soldotna 1:56.68. 5) Colony 1:58.67. 6) Kodiak 2:00.27. 7) Valdez 2:00.36. 8) West Valley 2:01.06.

200 freestyle — 1) Burke, Samantha (Chugiak) 1:53.54. 2) Moody, Erin (Dimond) 1:55.66. 3) DeGeorge, Tara (West) 1:55.85. 4) Randall, Angie (West Valley) 1:57.97. 5) Cummiskey, Marina (Kodiak) 1:58.16. 6) Kito, Gabi (Juneau) 1:59.37. 7) Heaton, Cassidy (West Valley) 1:59.68. 8) Blackstone, Abby (Chugiak) 2:05.27.

200 IM — 1) Lindquist, Tahna (Kodiak) 2:03.61 (new state record; old record 2:04.98, Tahna Lindquist, Kodiak, 2014 preliminaries). 2) Oakley, Madeleine (Dimond) 2:12.82. 3) Schoff, Amber (South) 2:13.14. 4) Taylor-Roth, Abigail (Juneau) 2:15.40. 5) Moore, Skylar (Sitka) 2:16.34. 6) Hanson, Olivia (Dimond) 2:16.90. 7) Williamson, Jessica (North Pole) 2:18.86. 8) Hamrick, Kaia (Juneau) 2:24.30.

50 freestyle — 1) Hughes, Ila (Kodiak) 23.20 (new state record; old record 23.34, Maria Reeves, Lathrop, 1998). 2) Jennings, Emmie (Chugiak) 23.65. 3) Weeks, Alex (Soldotna) 23.93. 4) Kelly, Ciera (Juneau) 24.23. 5) Hampton, Alyssa (Dimond) 24.49. 6) Isaak, Dakota (Juneau) 24.63. 7) Sherrill, Ella (Ketchikan) 25.14. 8) Williams, Kendal (Dimond) 25.23.

1-meter diving — 1) Stone, Jami (Eagle River) 474.70 (new state record; old record 463.45, Alaina Patterson, Chugiak, 1998). 2) Panting, Sierra (South) 398.40. 3) Wagner, Kendall (West) 392.60. 4) Heiberg, Tessa (Kodiak) 359.30. 5) Foster, Katelyn (Colony) 317.35. 6) Pitsch, Mikaela (Kenai) 313.60. 7) Laselle, Samantha (Palmer) 282.00. 8) McIntosh, Nicole (North Pole) 279.20.

100 butterfly — 1) Kelly, Ciera (Juneau) 57.29. 2) Rohde, Arianna (Dimond) 58.85. 3) Ruffin, Mia (Juneau) 59.86. 4) Evershed, Elcee, HHS, 1:01.11. 5) Kito, Gabi (Juneau) 1:01.35. 6) English, Megan (Soldotna) 1:02.68. 7) Watson, Cassandra (South) 1:02.76. 8) McNelly, Riley (Valdez) 1:03.70.

100 freestyle — 1) Hughes, Ila (Kodiak) 50.51 (new state record; old record 50.62, Ila Hughes, Kodiak, 2012). 2) Jennings, Emmie (Chugiak) 50.80. 3) Weeks, Alex (Soldotna) 53.24. 4) Bruce, Jordyn (Eagle River) 54.13. 5) Randall, Angie (West Valley) 54.84. 6) Sherrill, Ella (Ketchikan) 55.00. 7) Brockmann, Hannah (Thunder Mountain) 55.17. 8) Williams, Kendal (Dimond) 55.56.

500 freestyle — 1) Lindquist, Tahna (Kodiak) 4:53.50 (new state record; old record 4:56.55, Kayla Meiergerd, Chugiak, 1998). 2) DeGeorge, Tara (West) 5:08.77. 3) Kinworthy, Sierra (Colony) 5:08.83. 4) Moody, Erin (Dimond) 5:13.12. 5) Heaton, Cassidy (West Valley) 5:17.55. 6) Blackstone, Abby (Chugiak) 5:26.94. 7) Sato, Ripple (Dimond) 5:27.08. 8) O’Brien, Kiera (Ketchikan) 5:27.40.

200 freestyle relay — 1) Kodiak (Cummiskey, Lindquist, Horne, Hughes), 1:37.76. 2) Chugiak 1:38.11. 3) Juneau 1:38.13. 4) Dimond 1:41.41. 5) South 1:43.90. 6) West 1:45.77. 7) West Valley 1:45.86. 8) Colony 1:46.01.

100 backstroke — 1) Burke, Samantha (Chugiak) 57.83. 2) Rohde, Arianna (Dimond) 58.43. 3) Schoff, Amber (South) 1:00.13. 4) Chappell, Eliza (Juneau) 1:01.10. 5) English, Megan (Soldotna) 1:02.47. 6) Kinworthy, Sierra (Colony) 1:02.50. 7) Watson, Cassandra (South) 1:04.21. 8) Hanson, Olivia (Dimond) 1:04.32.

100 breaststroke — 1) Isaak, Dakota (Juneau) 1:06.41. 2) Ruffin, Mia (Juneau) 1:08.44. 3) Oakley, Madeleine (Dimond) 1:08.55. 4) Moore, Skylar (Sitka) 1:08.77. 5) Bruce, Jordyn (Eagle River) 1:09.27. 6) Taylor-Roth, Abigail (Juneau) 1:09.41. 7) McNelly, Riley (Valdez) 1:12.78. 8) Henry, Rachel (Soldotna) 1:13.35.

400 freestyle relay — 1) Kodiak (Cummiskey, Lindquist, Horne, Hughes), 3:33.22. 2) Chugiak 3:36.56. 3) Dimond 3:42.78. 4) Juneau 3:44.18. 5) West Valley 3:48.03. 6) Soldotna 3:49.53. 7) Bartlett 3:51.13. 8) Ketchikan 3:55.85.

Boys

Team scores

1) Dimond 110. 2) Kodiak 96. 3) Service 57. 4) Petersburg 50. 5) Thunder Mountain 46. 6) Colony 39. 7) Soldotna 35. 8) Eagle River 29. 9, Sitka 22. 10, West Valley 20. 10, South 20. 12) Lathrop 10. 13) Wasilla 9. 14) Chugiak 4. 15) Ketchikan 3. 15) Palmer 3. 17) North Pole 2.

200 medley relay — 1) Kodiak (Lincoln, James, Anderson, Schauff), 1:37.28. 2) Dimond 1:38.20. 3) Thunder Mountain 1:38.60. 4) Eagle River 1:39.51. 5) Colony 1:39.94. 7) Sitka 1:43.86. 8) Petersburg 1:54.16.

200 freestyle — 1) Summers, Michael (Dimond) 1:41.91. 2) O’Brien, Jarod (Dimond) 1:44.89. 3) Pate, Will (Sitka) 1:46.71. 4) Davis, Jorden (Thunder Mountain) 1:47.47. 5) James, Blake (Kodiak) 1:49.07. 6) Hall, Jacob (Soldotna) 1:49.25. 7) Alfano, Nathan (Dimond) 1:50.35. 8) Bloom, Zach (Colony) 1:51.01.

200 IM — 1) Lindquist, Talon (Kodiak) 1:52.01 (new state record; old record 1:53.51, John Rogers, Lathrop, 1995). 2) Fox, Kenny (Thunder Mountain) 1:54.85. 3) Adams, Nathaniel (Service) 1:55.23. 4) Hanni, Jacob (Dimond) 1:58.35. 5) Anderson, Joseph (Colony) 1:58.36. 6) Emili, Ryan (South) 1:59.93. 7) Simmons, Jake (Colony) 2:00.17. 8) O’Donoghue, Tommy (West Valley) 2:01.28.

50 freestyle — 1) Aulbach, Abel (Petersburg) 21.13. 2) Hogue-Corwin, EZ (Service) 21.37. 3) O’Brien, Thane (Thunder Mountain) 22.14. 4) Hall, David (Soldotna) 22.26. 5) Lai, Nathan (South) 22.31. 6) Watkins, Cody (Soldotna) 22.35. 7) Schauff, Nathan (Kodiak) 22.65. 8) Anderson, Jonas (Kodiak) 23.12.

1-meter diving — 1) Schachle, Brayden, Wwhs, 462.95. 2) Desatoff, Austin (Dimond) 461.95. 3) Cambell, Zach (Lathrop) 461.75. 4) Knutson, Connor (South) 411.10. 5) Fugere, Shawn (Chugiak) 406.25. 6) Waldhaus, Gabe (Palmer) 395.75. 7) Lord, Colby (Colony) 373.70. 8) Ulatan, Ruben (Kodiak) 343.35.

100 butterfly — 1) Fox, Kenny (Thunder Mountain) 50.33. 2) Fox-Icarro, Blaise (Eagle River) 53.24. 3) Alfano, Nathan (Dimond) 53.27. 4) Simmons, Jake (Colony) 53.91. 5) Watkins, Cody (Soldotna) 54.40. 6) Marsh, Evan (Petersburg) 54.45. 7) Anderson, Jonas (Kodiak) 54.58. 8) Nicholson, Ryan (West Valley) 54.67.

100 freestyle — 1) Aulbach, Abel (Petersburg) 44.90 (new state record; old record 46.27, Derek Gibb, Petersburg, 1998). 2) Adams, Nathaniel (Service) 46.52. 3) Hogue-Corwin, EZ (Service) 46.76. 4) Schauff, Dyton (Kodiak) 48.15. 5) Lai, Nathan (South) 48.59. 6) Hall, David (Soldotna) 49.17. 7) McCord, Corbin (Ketchikan) 49.77. 8) Dittlinger, Reed (Dimond) 50.61.

500 freestyle — 1) Summers, Michael (Dimond) 4:36.59. 2) Pate, Will (Sitka) 4:46.85. 3) Hanni, Jacob (Dimond) 4:49.98. 4) Davis, Jorden (Thunder Mountain) 4:54.73. 5) Suleimani, Alex (Lathrop) 4:56.84. 6) Rogers, Jonah (Service) 4:56.92. 7) Bloom, Zach (Colony) 5:00.82. 8) Hammersland, Logan (Ketchikan) 5:09.65.

200 freestyle relay — 1) Kodiak (Lindquist, Schauff, James, Schauff), 1:26.71. 2) Service 1:27.59. 3) Dimond 1:28.62. 4) Petersburg 1:29.19. 5) Eagle River 1:29.53. 6) Soldotna 1:30.04. 7) South 1:30.60. 8) West Valley 1:31.55.

100 backstroke — 1) Lindquist, Talon (Kodiak) 51.89. 2) Marsh, Evan (Petersburg) 52.50. 3) Lincoln, Nicholas (Kodiak) 53.40. 4) Dittlinger, Reed (Dimond) 54.00. 5) Schauff, Dyton (Kodiak) 54.41. 6) O’Donoghue, Tristan (West Valley) 54.72. 7) Jones, Trevor (Thunder Mountain) 55.57. 8) Harang, Brady (Sitka) 57.62.

100 breaststroke — 1) Anderson, Joseph (Colony) 58.76. 2) O’Donoghue, Tommy (West Valley) 58.79. 3) O’Brien, Jarod (Dimond) 59.97. 4) James, Blake (Kodiak) 1:00.19. 5) Carpenter, Bryce (Eagle River) 1:00.80. 6) Creglow, Jacob (Soldotna) 1:00.85. 7) Hoen, Jack (Dimond) 1:01.50. 8) Cvancara, Luke (Dimond) 1:03.56.

400 freestyle relay — 1) Dimond (Summers, Hanni, Alfano, O’Brien), 3:10.93. 2) Service 3:11.53. 3) Kodiak 3:15.49. 4) Petersburg 3:17.09. 5) Soldotna 3:19.31. 6) Colony 3:25.05. 7) Sitka 3:25.14. 8) North Pole 3:35.22.

Link:  

State swim meet 2014

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First Reserve Selects iLEVEL to Monitor Portfolio