LAS VEGAS (AP) -- It's still a McDonald's -- but it's still Las Vegas.
The first-ever Metro McDonald's is already open for business on the Las Vegas Strip. Just like Vegas itself, it's open all day and all night. Plans are in the works for a late-night grand opening bash next week, featuring showgirls and celebrity servers.
It's the first of the company's restaurants to get the "Metro" name. This McDonald's features digital menu boards, wireless Internet access, and murals that look like graffiti.
There's also a second-floor dining room -- so, as they say in Vegas, what happens there can stay there.
LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) -- Did you know that the world record for the biggest plate of nachos is nearly 4,000 pounds?
At least,that WAS the record. It was topped over the weekend in Lawrence, Kansas, where an 80-foot plate of nachos weighing 4,689 pounds was served at the Kansas Relays.
The Lawrence Journal-World says it was gobbled up by noon.
Breaking the record was no easy task. For one thing, a cooler went out Saturday morning, and a ton of food -- literally -- spoiled. Organizers worked with local suppliers to replace the bad food.
SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) -- Rats. A South Florida hockey tradition is back.
Ever since the mid-1990s, when Florida Panthers player Scott Mellanby used his stick to kill a rat in the dressing room before the game, rats have been part of the team's lore. And fans are now encouraged to litter the ice with plastic rats after every home win.
But some don't wait that long. At least a dozen of the plastic rats hit the ice after every goal, despite appeals from the public address announcer reminding fans that they could be ejected for rat-tossing -- and the team could get a delay-of-game penalty.
After Florida beat the New Jersey Devils Saturday night to move the team within one win of a first-round playoff victory, forward Kris Versteeg noted that there were "a lot of premature rats out there."
TOKYO (AP) -- Good thing Misaki Murakami's name was on his soccer ball. It was lost in last year's tsunami in Japan, but now it's been found -- across the Pacific on a remote Alaskan island.
Kyodo News agency says the 16-year-old from a town devastated by the tsunami is surprised and thankful that the ball has been found.
Officials from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration say the ball is one of the first pieces of debris that can be traced back to Japan from the March 11 tsunami.
David Baxter, who spotted the ball on Middleton Island, says his Japanese wife, Yumi, talked with Murakami over the phone.
They plan to send the ball back to the teen soon.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) -- At a new drive-thru service in South Florida, it's not hamburgers, car washes or coffee on the menu.
The Christian Life Center wants to pray for you.
The South Florida Sun-Sentinel (http://sunsent.nl/IXS6em ) reports that the Pentecostal congregation has been offering drive-thru prayer services every Friday for the last month.
Outreach Pastor Sol Levy says many who pass through have never been inside a church and are often at the end of their rope. The volunteers offer to pray with them on any issue, big or small, from a rough day at work to divorce and foreclosure.
Church leaders say the initiative is starting to gain popularity and has served about 150 people so far.
SHORE THINGS-CHASING SAND
MONMOUTH BEACH, N.J. (AP) -- It sounds like a great way to make a living.
Jon Miller spends some of his days riding a Sea Doo with a global positioning system strapped onto it, back and forth, up and down a beach in New Jersey.
It's for good reason. Miller is a coastal expert and professor, trying to find out what happens to the trillions of grains of sand that get washed away each time the government does a beach replenishment project.
Miller says of his days on the beach, "It sure beats sitting at a desk in front of a computer" -- which he does the rest of the week.
Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.