News In Brief

YOU MAY LOOK, BUT THAT'S ALL

Louisiana State University student Darrell Kropog cut a class Monday. No big deal, right? In this case, it was. He'd been hired as an extra in the film "What Are Friends For?" - sharing a scene with pop star Britney Spears while servicing a car in a gas station. Darrell was on call all day, although the shoot took only about an hour. So, what was it like meeting Spears? Well, that didn't actually happen. She was constantly accompanied by security guards and was whisked away immediately afterward. But she appeared to be "real nice."

SNAIL MAIL

Speaking of students, a card arrived the other day in Hopkinsville, Ky., for Bethel College junior Posey Cullen. So what, you ask? Only that it had been mailed Feb. 23, 1909 - 92 years ago. Cullen graduated in 1910, and the school closed in 1964. What's more, the card came from a processing center in Cincinnati that wasn't built until 27 years after the card was postmarked.

Where industries go most often to set up trade shows

Las Vegas was the host for more exhibits and trade shows than any other US city in 2000 - 127 - and by year's end will have doubled the size of its convention center. Chicago, with its central location and a convention venue twice the size of any other, the 2.2 million-square-foot McCormick Center, ran a close second, according to the publication Tradeshow Week Databook. Nationally, convention space - not to mention hotel rooms for attendees to stay in - is projected to grow by 25 percent over five years. Cities staging the most trade shows last year:

1. Las Vegas 127

2. Chicago 124

3. Orlando, Fla. 110

4. New York 107

5. Atlanta 92

6. Dallas 81

7. New Orleans 80

(tie) San Francisco 80

9. Boston 64

10. Washington 54

- Associated Press

(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Monitor

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