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Whether revealing events in small-town America or overseas, or profiling notable personalities, Weekend Edition from NPR News appreciates the extraordinary details that make up every story.

This two-hour weekend morning newsmagazine covers hard news, a wide variety of newsmakers, and cultural stories with care, accuracy, and a wink of humor.

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A year ago, who would have thought 78-year-old Joe Biden would be sworn in this week as president?

He had just finished fourth in the Iowa caucuses. He would soon finish fifth in the New Hampshire primary. He was derided as old, out-of-touch, an elderly, silvery centrist who said screwball things, as when he told a crowd, "Folks, I can tell you I've known eight presidents, three of them intimately."

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With his trademark suspenders and deep baritone voice Larry King spoke with presidents, world leaders, celebrities, authors, scientists, comedians, athletes — everyone. The Peabody Award-winning broadcaster died Saturday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. He was 87.

The death of the famed interviewer was announced on King's Twitter feed in a posting from his production studio, Ora Media. No cause of death was provided, but King had recently been hospitalized with COVID-19.

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And now it's time for sports.

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A summer's getaway on a picturesque loch in Scotland in your own wee cabin surrounded by festive families - sounds idyllic, no? But what if there's the kind of rain Sarah Moss describes in her new novel, "Summerwater"?

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The very first seconds of HBO's new documentary on Tiger Woods gives glimpses of the expectations piled on him from birth, really, by his father, Earl.

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When I first got to know Neil Sheehan, he was going through trying times. We were war correspondents of different generations and I was in awe of the intrepid reporter of the Vietnam conflict, first for United Press International, then The New York Times. He was the first to get his hands on the leak of official documents that became known as the Pentagon Papers, which revealed how U.S. government officials had lied to the American people about the Vietnam War.

The copyright on F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby expired on the first stroke of 2021 and the book entered the public domain.

Visual Arts Thrived In A Tumultuous 2020

Jan 2, 2021

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A Gay Veteran Remembers Serving In Silence

Dec 26, 2020

Decades before openly gay Americans were legally allowed to serve in the military, Joseph Patton, a gay man, served in silence.

Patton, who died earlier this year at 83 years old, sat down for a StoryCorps interview in 2019 to talk about a time in his life that brought him both pride and pain.

He enlisted in the Navy in 1955 at age 17, keeping his sexuality a secret for the entirety of his service.

"My dad told me going in the service would help me be a man," Patton said.

But his reasons for joining the Navy were a bit more lighthearted than that.

Food banks have seen demand climb dramatically this year. Eric Cooper of the San Antonio Food Bank talks about how additional federal dollars could make a difference to his clients.

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Sacha Pfeiffer speaks with director Bryan Fogel about his new film, The Dissident, which chronicles the life and death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

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It's a regular, old, chain link fence circling a parking lot in a residential community in Maryland.

Except that attached to the fence are seven wooden boxes. They look like elaborate dioramas.

It's all part of an art exhibit called Community Lost and Found — and it asks residents to consider the question: What have you lost, and what have you found in 2020?

One box is decorated with a bird's nest and a pacifier suspended in a translucent globe — representing the baby girl that Megan Abbot and Gary Hall had in May.

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2020 Book Concierge: Books For Foodies

Dec 19, 2020

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NPR's Book Concierge has nearly 400 recommendations from staff and critics. I give to you this holiday season a little assistance to find a book for you or a loved one. Today, some ideas for books about food from four of our colleagues.

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I finally get to say, it's time for sports.

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SIMON: One hundred years after the Negro Leagues were founded, those superb ballplayers finally get major league status. But is that an empty honor?

'Twas the night before Christmas, and all o'er the house
Stirred the clicking — most frantic — of every mouse
All the stockings were hung by the TV with flair
But children played on apps in their rooms without care
Sneaking smart-phones and laptops right into their beds
While visions of going viral danced in their heads
When out on the street there arose such a clatter
I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter
When what to my wandering eyes did appear
An electric sleigh, without any reindeer

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Andrew Bird began to wonder about Christmas a while ago.

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ANDREW BIRD: (Singing) Yeah, I'm writing this song about Christmas in April this year. So I'm not sure what to think about that.

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Looking for a book to curl up with just about now? I mean, you can't spend all of your time listening to the music of BJ Leiderman, who writes our theme music. NPR's Book Concierge has nearly 400 recommendations. Some of our colleagues have recommended four new books about current events for your reading pleasure.

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And, no matter the news, it's time for sports.

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Another holiday tradition will be missed because of the pandemic this year. "The Nutcracker" is not being performed before many live audiences in America.

Not by the New York City Ballet, The Joffrey in Chicago, or companies in Atlanta, Boston, Austin, Milwaukee, Sacramento and Philadelphia. That may spare a number of gingerbread soldiers and mice. But the cancellation of so many presentations of Tchaikovsky's ballet strikes at the heart of the health of dance companies and the arts across America.

The power of a president to pardon people for crimes has always been controversial. Some early American leaders thought it smacked too much of royalty.

But Alexander Hamilton argued the law should have avenues for mercy, or "justice would wear a countenance too sanguinary and cruel." He thought one person was more likely to use such power with conscience than a committee.

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