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RALEIGH (AP) — With cases and other key metrics trending downward in North Carolina, Gov. Roy Cooper on Wednesday announced the state will ease gathering and occupancy restrictions and end its 10 p.m. statewide curfew starting Friday.

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Taking some creative license, the photographer provided an interesting version from what one might normally see from the end of South Elm Street in Swansboro, looking across the water. Removed from the photograph through enhancements were a chain-link fence and a sailboat that was in a yard;…

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In an outdoor service, the Rev. Michelle Bullock of St. Peter's by-the-Sea Episcopal Church performed a baptism involving the Grunke children, Audrey, Sadie and Weston. It was one of two baptisms at the church this past year. COVID-19 has forced changes on area churches. For the story, purch…