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July 31, 2012


213th day of 2012, 153 remaining

Sunrise: 6:13am
Sunset: 8:19m

93% of the moon is visible, setting at 4:41am, rising at 7:12pm

Low Tides at the Golden Gate: 4:47am/4:35pm
High Tides: 11:56am/10:50pm

Today's special celebrations:

Festival of San Ignacio - Peru
Upswing of the Revolution - Republic of Congo
La Hae Hawai`i (Flag Day) - Hawaii, US
Imbolc / Oimelc / Brigid (Southern Hemisphere) - Paganism
Lunasa or Lammas (Northern Hemisphere) - Paganism

St. Neot's Day (patron of fish)

Uncommon Instruments Day

Today in history:

1498 - Christopher Columbus, on his third voyage to the Western Hemisphere, arrived at the island of Trinidad.

1790 - The first U.S. patent was issued to Samuel Hopkins for his process for making potash and pearl ashes. The substance was used in fertilizer.

1792 - The cornerstone of the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia, PA, was laid. It was the first building to be used only as a U.S. government building.

1919 - Germany's Weimar Constitution was adopted.

1928 - MGM’s Leo the lion roared for the first time. He introduced MGM’s first talking picture, "White Shadows on the South Seas."

1932 - Enzo Ferrari retired from racing. In 1950 he launched a series of cars under his name.

1945 - Pierre Laval of France surrendered to Americans in Austria.

1948 - U.S. President Truman helped dedicate New York International Airport (later John F. Kennedy International Airport) at Idlewild Field.

1955 - Marilyn Bell of Toronto, Canada, at age 17, became the youngest person to swim the English Channel.

1959 - The Euskadi Ta Askatasuna (ETA) was founded. The group is known for being an armed Basque nationalist and separatist organization.

1961 - The first tie in All-Star Game major league baseball history was recorded when it was stopped in the 9th inning due to rain at Boston's Fenway Park.

1964 - The American space probe Ranger 7 transmitted pictures of the moon's surface.

1971 - Men rode in a vehicle on the moon for the first time in a lunar rover vehicle (LRV).

1981 - The seven-week baseball players’ strike came to an end when the players and owners agreed on the issue of free agent compensation.

1982 - Yugoslavia imposed a six-month freeze on prices.

1989 - A pro-Iranian group in Lebanon released a videotape reportedly showing the hanged body of American hostage William R. Higgins.

1991 - U.S. President George H.W. Bush and Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty.

1995 - The Walt Disney Company agreed to acquire Capital Cities/ABC in a $19 billion deal.

1998 - Nicolas Cage received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

1999 - The spacecraft Lunar Prospect crashed into the moon. It was a mission to detect frozen water on the moon's surface. The craft had been launched on January 6, 1998.

If today's your birthday, you share it with:

Maximilian II 1527
S.S. Kresge 1867
George Liberace 1911
Milton Friedman 1912
Bryan Hextall 1913
William Todman 1913
Hank Jones 1918
Curt Gowdy 1919
Hank Bauer 1922
Don Murray 1929
Kenny Burrell 1931
Geoffrey Lewis 1935
France Nuyen 1939
Lobo 1943
Susan Flannery 1943
Sherry Lansing 1944
Geraldine Chaplin 1944
Bob Welch 1946
Gary Lewis 1946
Karl Green 1947
Barry Van Dyke 1951
Evonne Goolagong 1951
Alan Autry 1952
James Read 1953
Bill Berry 1956
Daniel Ash 1957
Wesley Snipes 1962
Norman Cook 1963
J.K. Rowling 1965
Dean Cain 1966
Loren Dean 1969
Robert Telfer 1977
Will Champion 1978
Evgeni Malkin 1986