May 19, 2013 in Nation/World

Danish singer wins Eurovision contest

From Wire Reports
Associated Press photo

Eurovision Song Contest winner Emmelie de Forest of Denmark celebrates with the trophy after the final in Malmo, Sweden, on Saturday.
(Full-size photo)

Denmark’s Emmelie de Forest has won this year’s Eurovision Song Contest with her ethno-inspired flute and drum tune “Only Teardrops,” despite tough competition from spectacular stage shows by performers from Azerbaijan and Ukraine.

Juries and television viewers across Europe awarded the barefoot, hippie-chic de Forest for the catchy love song driven by her deep, Shakira-like voice. She received a total of 281 points in the glitzy music battle.

“It was overwhelming and I could really feel the fans and the audience and the people in the arena,” the 20-year-old de Forest told reporters after the winners were announced early Sunday.

The televised extravaganza, with an audience of 125 million worldwide, is now in its 58th year.

Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, who watched the competition in Malmo on Saturday, called it a unique event that unites Europe.

“We see the old Yugoslavia, now independent states, after a decade of war they always vote for each other in Eurovision, “ Bildt told the Associated Press. “That I think is fun.”

Rain no damper for Obama and golf

President Barack Obama has taken two Cabinet secretaries out for a round of golf – in the rain.

The White House said Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and outgoing Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood joined the president Saturday at Andrews Air Force Base. LaHood is running the Transportation Department until the Senate confirms Obama’s choice of Charlotte, N.C., Mayor Anthony Foxx as successor.

Reporters saw Sebelius climb into the president’s SUV before the motorcade left the White House.

Before he got into the vehicle, Obama looked up at the gray sky with an outstretched hand.

White House assistant chef Sam Kass completed the foursome.

The birthday bunch

PBS newscaster Jim Lehrer is 79. Actor James Fox is 74. Actor Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca in “Star Wars”) is 69. Musician Pete Townshend (The Who) is 68. Singer-bassist Dusty Hill (ZZ Top) is 64. Actor Eric Lloyd (“The Santa Clause”) is 27.

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