Check back here daily for the latest oddball stories that just may give you a chuckle or leave you scratching your head.
Motorists offered ice cream as sweet relief from potholes
FRANKLIN, Mich. — A suburban Detroit business is offering a treat for those who have had their driving disrupted by potholes in recent weeks.
The Detroit Free Press reports Farmhouse Coffee & Ice Cream in Franklin is offering a free scoop of Ashby Sterling Ice Cream's "Michigan Pothole" for those who have replaced a tire or fixed other damage due to a pothole.
The newspaper says to get a scoop bring in a receipt from Feb. 1 and beyond detailing the repair. The promotion runs until March 25. The ice cream flavor is described as "thick black tar fudge and chocolate ice cream with chunky chocolate cookie asphalt pieces."
Road crews in Michigan have stepped up efforts to patch potholes that have become damaging and dangerous amid fluctuating winter temperatures.
Information from: Detroit Free Press, http://www.freep.com
Man with red sauce on face charged with meatball theft
HAZLE TOWNSHIP, Pa. — Police say a damning clue led to the arrest of a Pennsylvania man charged with stealing a pot of meatballs — red sauce smeared on his face and clothes.
Authorities in Luzerne County have charged 48-year-old Leahman Glenn Robert Potter with burglary, criminal trespass and theft by unlawful taking for allegedly swiping a pot of meatballs from a man's garage on Monday.
Police say the victim reported his meatballs missing and told officers at around 2:30 p.m. Monday that he saw Potter standing in front of his house with red sauce on his face and clothes. The pot was found on the street.
It's unclear if Potter washed the sauce off before he was arrested a short time later.
Potter's attorney did not immediately respond to a voicemail seeking comment.
Car vandalism culprit? Evidence points to unidentified bear
SONTAG, Miss. — Stealing a picnic basket is one thing. Mauling a car is quite another.
A Mississippi wildlife department biologist says a bear attacked a woman's car Friday in the Sontag community about 60 miles south of Jackson.
Jamie Holt tells the Jackson Clarion-Ledger there were tooth and claw marks consistent with a bear on the front wheel wells and hood. There was headlight damage, and the front license tag holder was ripped off. There was also a muddy bear track nearby.
No one was inside the car, and it's not clear what prompted the attack. There was no food inside.
A nearby trash can was untouched, as were apples in the yard.
Mississippi's black bear population is growing, and bears are increasingly seen in areas where they've not been seen before.
Information from: The Clarion-Ledger, http://www.clarionledger.com
Suspects on the run scale fence, land in police lot, custody
PHOENIX — Two shoplifting suspects running from police scaled a fence to get away from officers and landed in a secure parking lot of a police station — and in custody.
Officials tell KTAR-FM (http://bit.ly/2t585vf ) that officers were called to a gas station for possible shoplifting at 6 p.m. Friday. Authorities say as officers arrived, the suspects, 28-year-old Marwan Al Ebadi and 29-year-old Salma Hourieh, took off running.
The pair ran along the side of a building and jumped a fence, despite a sign for "Peoria Police" above the door.
Security video shows Hourieh trying to hide under a bench before being placed in custody. Al Ebadi climbed back over the fence and was arrested on the street.
Al Ebadi and Hourieh face charges of shoplifting, trespassing in a critical public safety building and drug charges.
It wasn't immediately known if either is represented by a lawyer.
This story has been corrected to show attribution is to KTAR-FM, not KTAR-TV.
Information from: KTAR-FM, http://www.ktar.com
Damaged ear of Penn State mascot's statue repaired
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — The damaged ear of a statue of the Pennsylvania State University mascot has been repaired.
Authorities were called to the university's Nittany Lion Shrine around 4 a.m. Sunday and found that an ear on the right side of the statue had been broken off and was found nearby.
The Centre Daily Times reports Wednesday the ear had been fixed by the university's Office of Physical Plant. Earlie the statue had a temporary replacement for the ear thanks to Penn State's 3-D Printing Club.
The statue sculpted from a 13-ton block of limestone in 1940 was vandalized in 1978 and 1994. In 1979, sculptor Heinz Warneke, then 84, made a cast for a new ear.
The Lion lost the ear again in 2003, but it wasn't thought to be vandalism.
Jury duty anyone? North Carolina county finds few takers
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — The judges, deputies and clerks showed up for court, but one key element was missing: No one had invited any jurors.
The Winston-Salem Journal reports that North Carolina's fourth-largest county failed to mail notices to the 1,700 or so prospective jurors needed to hear cases this week.
After no one showed up for jury duty Monday, Forsyth County officials made a plea through local television station WXII for any volunteers willing to fulfill their civic duty.
But only 19 people showed up Tuesday. One judge in the county of 370,000 residents even sent deputies to a mall to seek volunteers, but found no other takers.
"We don't have enough jurors," Judge Stuart Albright said in court Tuesday afternoon before dismissing the few who had shown up.
New notices were sent asking hundreds of prospective jurors to be there Thursday, while other trials were postponed until next week.
Normally, a county printing office makes the notices and sends them. That happens after a jury clerk determines how many prospective panelists are needed and uses a system to select them at random, Forsyth County Clerk of Court Susan Frye said in an email.
But this time, the notices weren't mailed because of an error by someone in the county print shop, said Kirby Robinson, the county's property manager.
"It's an unfortunate thing, and we sincerely apologize to the people who were inconvenienced," he told the newspaper.
Frye said this is the only time this kind of error has happened during her eight years as clerk of court. She said she's working with the county to ensure the mistake "does not occur again."
California college drops 'Trump' from impeachment class name
SAN DIEGO — San Diego State University is dropping President Donald Trump's name from the title of a class after public criticism.
The name of the course? "Trump: Impeachment, Removal or Conviction?"
The university announced Wednesday that it was dropping Trump's name from the title of the one-unit weekend class.
The course, which begins Friday, covers the history, procedures and constitutional grounds for removing presidents as well as presidential immunity. It also reviews all 19 U.S. presidents who faced potential impeachment, including Richard Nixon, who resigned before he could face such proceedings.
It's offered to the public through the university's extended studies program.
The university says the course isn't state-funded and isn't required for graduation.
Bread to brew: Maine friars closing bakery to open taproom
BUCKSPORT, Maine — Two Maine friars say they are closing down their iconic bakery to open up a brewery.
The Bangor Daily News reports Friar's Bakehouse in Bangor will close Friday after more than 18 years. Franciscan Brothers Donald Paul and Kenneth Leo say they plan to open their new venture, the Friar's Brewhouse Tap Room, this month.
The brew house will be located in Bucksport, much closer to the brothers' monastery. Paul says the 40-minute commute to Bangor was a big strain for the two.
The two began selling their homebrew beer in 2013, and had been considering opening a separate business to highlight their brews for the past six years.
Information from: Bangor Daily News, http://www.bangordailynews.com
Massachusetts school to keep 'Millionaires' mascot name
LENOX, Mass. — Students at a Massachusetts school want to remain Millionaires.
The Lenox Memorial Middle and High School student council on Wednesday announced that a school-wide poll found a majority of students want to keep the sometimes contentious Millionaires mascot.
About 96 percent of the school's 438 students voted last month. Fifty-one percent voted to keep the nickname, 32 percent wanted to change it, and 17 percent had no opinion.
Students last spring voted to change it because it is divisive, leads to taunts from opposing schools, and doesn't accurately reflect the picturesque town's economics.
Superintendent Timothy Lee tells The Berkshire Eagle the latest vote "puts the issue to rest."
The nickname is a tribute to wealthy out-of-towners, called "cottagers," who built mansions during the gilded age and employed the locals.
Information from: The Berkshire (Mass.) Eagle, http://www.berkshireeagle.com
Town seeks $1 from town for increased school budget
TIVERTON, R.I. — A Rhode Island school district is asking local taxpayers to dig deeper into their pockets to fund next year's school budget.
But don't expect outrage in Tiverton. The school committee wants a total of $1.
The committee is proposing increasing the next fiscal year's school budget by $800,000 over last year, but noted that it is getting an expected $340,000 in state aid and will withdraw almost $460,000 from its reserve fund. That leaves the town on the hook for $1, a minimum amount required by state law.
School Committee member Deborah Pallasch tells The Newport Daily News that the board has never asked for just $1 before.
A town referendum May 19 will allow registered voters to decide on the budget.
Information from: The Newport Daily News.