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Grammy-nominated Jekalyn Carr to sing the national anthem at Celebration Bowl

Gospel artist Jekalyn Carr will perform the national anthem at the 2017 Celebration Bowl on Saturday at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

The game, which begins at noon, pits North Carolina A&T State University against Grambling State University.

Related:

North Carolina A&T returns to Celebration Bowl

In 2016, Carr, a singer, speaker and preacher, released her album, “The Life Project,” which included the single, “You’re Bigger.”  Soon, she will release her first book, “You Will Win: Inspirational Strategies To Help You Overcome” and her fourth album, “One Nation Under God.”

Event:

2017 Celebration Bowl will be held noon Saturday at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, 1414 Andrew Young International Blvd. NW. For tickets go the Celebration Bowl website   or Ticketmaster, ( 1-800-745-3000.) The Celebration Bowl also offers a “ME Plus 3” ticket purchase offer has been extended through Friday. Fans can purchase four tickets for the price of three. Ticket prices range from $50 to $175. www.thecelebrationbowl.com

Photos: ”Guess Who Showed Up At Dinner” Theatrical Play 

"Guess Who Showed Up At Dinner" theatrical play coming 2018

See The Dazz Band at City Winery

KISS 104.1 presents Dazz Band. This week, tune into Sasha the Diva for your chance to win tickets to see the Dazz Band at the City Winery on January 7, 2018. 

To purchase tickets, visit the City Winery website. 

World AIDS Day 2017: 9 facts about HIV/AIDS everyone should know

World AIDS Day has been designated every December 1 since 1988 as a way to draw awareness of the disease and mourn the 35 million people who have died from it.

The event has since shifted to focus on successes in the global fight against the disease and the importance of continuing these efforts for the 36.7 million worldwide who are living with HIV/AIDS.

Yet, as recently as 2012, more than a third of Americans incorrectly believed the virus could be transmitted by sharing a drinking glass with an HIV-positive person, swimming in the same pool as someone infected or even just touching the same toilet seat.

So, even though HIV and AIDS are common terms, myths and confusion clearly remain. So what is HIV, what is AIDS, and what do we know about prevention and treatment?

Here are nine vital facts to know about HIV and AIDS and how to prevent and treat both:

1. HIV is a virus. The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) attacks the cells in the body (CD4, or T cells) that help the immune system fight off infection. People infected with HIV can become increasingly more susceptible to infections if the virus goes untreated and impairs those immune cells. Like the virus that causes the chicken pox, HIV remains in the body.

MORE: 

CDC: Blacks with HIV less likely to receive consistent medical care

Stigma still fueling rising rate of HIV among blacks 

Despite progress, Atlanta’s HIV epidemic is worse

2. AIDS is a medical diagnosis, given when an individual  has the HIV infection and either a low count of immune cells, an opportunistic infection or both. AIDS is actually the third stage of HIV infection, with the first being exposure to the virus.

3. Known most commonly as Chronic HIV, the second stage is the most critical for treatment. Although exposure to the virus can immediately create flu-like symptoms in some people, many are unaware they have been infected. HIV can be asymptomatic (with no symptoms) for years, but the virus is still attacking the body's immune system even if the person doesn't feel sick. The CDC recommends antiretroviral treatment for anyone with HIV, which will both minimize the damage to the person's immune system and also reduce the chance of transmission.

4. Transmission is most common among two very specific activities: sexual contact and needle/syringe sharing. Less commonly, infants born to HIV-positive mothers who did not receive HIV treatment, either through shared blood during pregnancy or while nursing after birth.

5.Casual contact – social kissing, hugging, sharing toilets or plates – will not transmit HIV. And while it is possible to get the virus from a reused or improperly sterilized tattoo or piercing needle, or from contaminated ink, there have been no known cases of anyone in the U.S. getting the disease that way. Likewise, mosquitos or other insects cannot transmit HIV.

6. Early treatment and antiretroviral treatment has proven successful in making HIV a chronic condition, instead of the once fatal diagnosis when World AIDS Day began. Yet one in seven Americans who have HIV don't know it. That's why everyone between 13 and 64 should be tested for the virus at least once. People with higher risk factors may need more frequent testing, which they can discuss with their doctor.

7. Despite improvements in treatment for HIV, there is still no cure. Researchers are working to develop a vaccine that would train the body's immune system to fight the virus and prevent it from taking hold. There is also PrEP – or a combination of HIV drugs known as pre-exposure prophylaxis – that can be taken daily to prevent the virus from establishing a permanent infection. It is not 100 percent effective, although it does reduce the risk of infection by more than 90 percent among those who take it properly.

Furthermore, the CDC released a statement recently disclosing that, when HIV patients have viral detection low enough (of 200 copies/ml), the virus cannot be transmitted.

"Across three different studies, including thousands of couples and many thousand acts of sex without a condom or pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP)," the statement continues, "no HIV transmissions to an HIV-negative partner were observed when the HIV-positive person was virally suppressed. This means that people who take ART daily as prescribed and achieve and maintain an undetectable viral load have effectively no risk of sexually transmitting the virus to an HIV-negative partner."

8. With the advances in treatment and prevention, HIV/AIDS doesn't generate the headlines it did a generation ago. An estimated 37,600 Americans became infected in 2014, an 18 percent drop nationwide from 2008. Despite that improvement, two populations experience a greater burden of new HIV cases: African-Americans, who accounted for 45 percent of all new infections, and people in the southeastern U.S., who account for roughly half of new infections.

9. Taken together, the facts around HIV/AIDS means one of the most important factors in effective treatment and prevention of the disease is knowing your HIV status. That requires a test, and World AIDS Day is a good reminder to get one scheduled. Hospitals, community health clinics and many doctors offer HIV tests, or you can visit GetTested to find the closest site for free and confidential testing for HIV, syphilis and other diseases. Those without online access can text their ZIP code to KNOW IT (566948).

Clark Howard’s Christmas Kids

Join News 95.5 and AM750 WSB at any of the Walmart stores below to participate in our annual Clark's Christmas Kids toy and gift drive.  

Come inside each store to choose a wish list from one of Georgia’s foster children and then purchase one or more gifts for that child to receive on Christmas morning.  

You can make a difference in the lives of roughly 8,500 kids in foster care who will need help this holiday season.

We thank St. Vincent de Paul Georgia for their support.

Clark Howard and other WSB hosts will broadcast live from each location at the times listed below:

Watch Clark Howard's Christmas Kids video from 2016.

Debate settled: This is the right time to put up your Christmas tree

While it may never reach the level of controversy of how to hang the toilet paper roll or which way to load the dishwasher, the right time to put up the Christmas tree is a heavily-debated household topic.

There are answers to this question that depend on everything from Prince Albert to the opinion of tree growers to something called Adelaide Pageant Day.

RELATED: They spent 30 hours to identify the best fake Christmas tree

Whether you're undecided on the best time to put up your Christmas tree or are merely looking for reinforcement for your preferred date, at least one of these timing traditions is bound to work for you:

Forbidding the tree before turkeys

The ultimate etiquette authority, Miss Manners, doesn't specify when you should put up the tree, but does note succinctly that it isn't done before Thanksgiving.

The nouveau 12 days of Christmas approach

In days of yore, the 12 days of Christmas started with Christmas Day and wrapped up on January 6, also known as the Feast of the Epiphany. Apartment Therapy suggests a more modern 12 Days of Christmas tree strategy, putting up the tree for around 12 days beginning in mid-December and taking it down right after Christmas.

This dovetails nicely with advice from the British Christmas Tree Growers Association, which noted in The Telegraph that while it's cool to buy live trees from December 1 onwards, the middle of the festive season, around the third week of Advent, is a good compromise between putting the tree up immediately and waiting for Christmas Eve.

Prince Albert

Queen Victoria's husband, Prince Albert, is widely heralded as the man who lit up the Victorian Christmas tree tradition in the 1840s, bringing it to Britain from his native Germany. If you want to stick with the original Christmas Tree timeline of Albert and his German forebears, go with Christmas Eve. 

The Aussie approach

According to Monash University religious diversity professor Gary Bouma in The Age, the established guideline in Australia is not to put up the tree before December, but not everyone abides by it.

By "not everyone," he may mean the full 14 percent of Be a Fun Mum blog readers, who said they put up the tree in early November. They did restrain themselves until after something known as Adelaide Pageant Day, the second Saturday of November. And they are in solidarity with the Fun Mum herself, who says she put her tree up in early November because, "My mum always did. I love Christmas and like to string it out."

Viva Italiana

You may be leaning towards putting the tree up the first week of December anyhow, but this Italian tradition provides a godd reason for it. According to Italy Magazine, Italian Christmas traditions begin on December 8 with the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, a date set in the Catholic calendar in 1476 by Pope Sixtus IV.

Since December 8 is a public holiday and most Italians get the day off, it has become the day when many of them put up their Christmas trees and other holiday decor.

The final word on when to put up your tree

Assuming your own family tradition isn't already firmly in place, Southern Living gets the last word on the best time to put up the Christmas tree. That's because the ultimate authorities on Southern taste on all things mayo and wicker are also so darn sensible and inclusive on this topic: "We pass no judgement, but here are the times for when to put up your Christmas decorations. Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, is the earliest that you should set up a Christmas tree or put up Christmas-specific decorations."

The reason you shouldn't do it earlier? "It is inconsiderate for your beautiful tree to steal the thunder from your big turkey dinner."

As for the latest time to put up the tree, that would be Christmas Eve, a nod to bygone, less holiday-crazed times.

Former DNC Interim Chair Donna Brazile in Atlanta on Sunday

Former Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Donna Brazile will be in Atlanta Sunday to discuss and sign copies of her new book, “Hacks:  The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House.”

The free event , moderated by Mo Ivory, will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the ZuCot Gallery, 100 Centennial Park Drive NW.

Related:

Donna Brazile says she found “proof” Clinton rigged Democratic race

Donna Brazile not bothered at all by critics

Brazile’s book had drawn controversy from many Democrats.

In it,  the longtime political operative alleges there was an agreement between Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign to run the organization’s finances and have a role in its operations.

In exchange for the reducing the DNC’s debt, Clinton’s campaign was given control of the “party’s finances, strategy, and all the money raised,” Brazile wrote.

She also criticized former President Barack Obama’s “titantic” ego.

In previous interviews, Brazile defended her right to tell her story.

“ Why am I supposed to be the only person who is unable to tell my story?,” she said.

Book signing: Donna Brazile, former DNC interim chairwoman, will discuss and sign copies of “Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House.”  2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Free. ZuCot Gallery, 100 Centennial Park Drive NW. 404-380-1040. www.zucotgallery.com. for tickets go to Eventbrite.

Looking for a steamy night out? Try this Atlanta Booze & Nudes night

Whether it's a lively ladies outing or an adventurous date night, visiting Atlanta's Booze & Nudes will make it one to remember.

It's like paint and sip but with an R-rated twist. At this Thursday event, a beefy male model poses in the buff while attendees express themselves artistically by painting what they see − all of what they see.

RELATED: This is Atlanta’s best art gallery, according to our AJC poll

Tickets are currently available for Booze & Nudes, which will be held at the Little 5 Points Community Center, 1083 Austin Ave., Atlanta, (tickets are selling fast) and there will be more opportunities to sip on your favorite drink and artistically interpret a male model. 

"A lot of people come to paint and to learn how to paint, but most people come for that experience. And they will be guaranteed to get it," said Jasmine Strickland, professional artist and creator of Booze & Nudes.

Find out everything to expect during this head-turning night of sipping spirits and stripped-down artistry.

Interest is particularly high.

Strickland was shocked when the first ever Booze & Nudes event on Nov. 10 sold out on Eventbrite in days. She thought the night would only attract her friends' attention.

"I had no idea that it would have this much success," she said. "I literally went to sleep and woke up and the event sold out."

Strickland started Booze & Nudes as a way "to get the entire room together," where attendees can let their guard down and create art.

"Having someone in the room that is vulnerable makes you want to be vulnerable, too," she said. "And honestly I thought what woman wouldn't want to paint a nude male, and you don't get that opportunity too often."

Male models are hand-picked.

Each model is specially selected by Strickland from a modeling website, Model Mayhem. Currently, she's choosing muscular African-American men to reflect the look on Booze & Nudes' infamous fliers.

"They are like fitness models. So, they have chiseled abs. They are very handsome," she boasted.

Unlike traditional nude models with softer features, Strickland wants the Booze & Nudes men to appear "more stripper-like." She also interviews them to make sure that they have the personality to interact with a crowd.

"I wanted to bring the eye to the middle of the room," she said. "I didn't want someone who was boring who would kind of lay there and sit there and pose. I wanted someone that really brought attention to the room."

RELATED: Sia shares nude image of herself before paparazzi can sell it

It’s not all about the nudity. You’ll actually learn art techniques.

Booze & Nudes is for anyone with any level of art expertise, because it's a guided workshop.

"The first 10 minutes people are just trying to get used to having a naked man in front of them. So, after everybody kind of calms down...everybody starts talking to the guy and just painting," she said.

Attendees will be shown how to sketch the subject. Then once they are satisfied with the outline, they will shade their figure in with paint.

Plan to buy tickets in advance.

More Booze & Nudes events are planned through December. 

Other upcoming dates include sold-out events on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 17 and 18, along with the Nov. 24 show that currently has a few tickets left. 

An upcoming model is described as a “6-foot-3, muscular man from England who has an accent.”

In case you don’t make it to the local Booze & Nudes, you’ll also have options outside of Atlanta.

Due to the event's high demand, Strickland wants to bring Booze & Nudes to more locations in the Southeast, including the Carolinas, Tennessee, Louisiana and Alabama next year as a tour.

Strickland also hopes to open up a studio in Atlanta where Booze & Nudes will happen every week.

"It makes me feel good that this is something that I thought of that's getting such positive attention," Strickland said.

Tickets: Admission includes access to the show, a 9x12 canvas and painting equipment. Tickets must be purchased online here, and attendees must be 21 or older. Prices are $15 for early bird admission and $20 for general admission.

Strickland said women at a previous Booze & Nudes described the event as a one-of-a-kind experience.

"They say that it's something you can go to that's not the strip club, because a lot of people don't feel like going to the strip club...," Strickland said.

Parking and snacks are available onsite.

No worries on guessing where to park at this event. There's a parking lot attached to the Little Five Points location.

Alcohol won't be served onsite, but Strickland encourages attendees to BYOB and food. Just bottled water and a few snacks will be available.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade star lineup announced

Big-named stars will headlining this year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade for 2017.

Jimmy Fallon, Smokey Robinson, Wyclef Jean and Leslie Odom, Jr. will be joining 98 Degrees and the Goo Goo Dolls for the annual New York City spectacular, People reported.

>> Read more trending news

Broadway will also highlight new shows like “Anastasia,” “Dear Evan Hansen,” “Once on This Island” and “Spongebob Squarepants.”

Don’t forget about the massive balloons the parade is known for.

This year Olaf will join the parade, along with Chase from “Paw Patrol.”

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will kick off at 9 a.m. on Thanksgiving.

Photos: Target’s hot holiday toys for 2017

What toys will be on your children’s holiday lists? Target says these are the hot toys this year.

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