Peopletalk 8B

Sunday, June 9, 2002

Palmer to play on 'green' greens

NEBRASKA CITY, Neb. -- Golf legend Arnold Palmer and the head of the Environmental Protection Agency plan to play nine holes at a course designed to be environmentally friendly.

Palmer's company, Palmer Course Design, designed the 18-hole ArborLinks Home Course in this town famous for Arbor Day, the tree-planting holiday founded in 1872 by J. Sterling Morton.

The course, in southeast Nebraska about an hour's drive from Omaha, was built in cooperation with the National Arbor Day Foundation, which runs orchards and has a conference center nearby.

The foundation is dedicated to preserving trees and has 1 million members nationwide.

The course was the brainchild of its builder, Bill Kubly, chief executive officer of Lincoln-based golf course company Landscapes Unlimited. It advances an idea that has grown steadily in the golf community over the last 10 years: Build courses that complement the lay of the land and minimize the use of fertilizers, pesticides and irrigation.

It features narrow fairways and wild roughs and minimizes manicured areas outside the field of play.

The course will open June 21, but Palmer and EPA administrator Christie Todd Whitman will play at the grand opening four days later, as part of a conference on environmentally friendly golf courses.

Don Johnson and wife have second child

LOS ANGELES -- Don Johnson and his wife are parents for the second time.

Jasper Breckenridge Johnson, weighing 8 pounds, 12 ounces, was born at 2:32 p.m. Thursday in Los Angeles, publicist Elliot Mintz said. The mother and baby boy were doing fine, Mintz said.

Johnson, the 52-year-old "Nash Bridges" star, and his wife, Kelley, have a 2 1/2-year-old daughter, Grace. The couple married in April 1999.

R&B singer Ashanti protected from romance

NEW YORK -- While being connected with the Murder Inc. record label has helped make Ashanti a star, it hasn't exactly helped her love life.

The 21-year-old R&B singer said fellow label mate Ja Rule and Murder Inc. head Irv Gotti are very protective of her, and don't let just any man approach her.

"When we go to a club, I can't even dance with guy or nothing, because they always have me pinned up," she joked in a recent interview with The Associated Press.

Ashanti said she has a "friend" that she has tried to maintain a relationship with, but because she's so busy, she doesn't have time for romance.

"I'm single, technically," she said. "I can't do anything anyway, with all of these big brothers of mine."

Ashanti's self-titled first album debuted at the top of the charts in April and has sold more than 1.5 million copies.

Hero's widow accepts donation to Sept. 11 fund

SEWICKLEY, Pa. -- Lisa Beamer, whose late husband shouted "Let's roll" as passengers aboard United Flight 93 prepared to confront their hijackers on Sept. 11, will visit a western Pennsylvania middle school next week to accept money raised by students.

On Tuesday, Beamer also will attend the dedication of a tree planted for the hijack victims at Quaker Valley Middle School in Sewickley, about 10 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.

Students and employees have raised about $20,000 with bake sales and dinners, auctions, a teacher basketball game and by visiting veterans' hospitals, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Thursday. The students chose to donate the money to the Todd W. Beamer Foundation, which benefits children who lost parents in the attacks.

The ceremony and speech will not be open to the public.

Flight 93 was believed to be bound for Washington, and the passengers who thwarted the hijackers plans are credited with saving an untold number of lives. The plane crashed into a field in rural Pennsylvania, killing all 44 aboard.

-- From wire reports

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