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From church sermon to national holiday: How Father's Day got its start

Americans are expected to spend $14.3 billion on Father's Day this year, according to the National Retail Federation.

>> Read more trending stories  

Sonora Smart Dodd came up with the idea of celebrating Father's Day more than a century ago.

She got the idea to celebrate a day for dads after hearing a Mother's Day sermon in church in 1909.

Dodd's mom died, leaving Dodd's father to raise her and her five brothers. When she heard the sermon, she realized how much her father did for all of his children, and she wanted to honor him.

So, she rallied up support from local churches, the YMCA and others in her hometown of Spokane, Washington, to celebrate dads in June -- the month her dad was born. And in 1910, the state of Washington celebrated its first statewide Father's Day.

But some people reportedly opposed it, saying it was just a way to sell products.

It didn't become an official U.S. holiday until 1972 under President Richard Nixon -- 58 years after Mother's Day became an official holiday. Dodd was still alive when Father's Day became official. She died in 1978 at 96.

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This video includes clips from KSPS and KXLY and images from Washington Secretary of StateUSMC Archives, and Getty Images. Music provided courtesy of APM Music

#CheerioChallenge takes social media by storm just in time for Father's Day

Need something to do this Father's Day? Look no further than your pantry for hours of entertainment.

Thanks to Patrick Quinn, co-founder of parenting site Life of Dad, fathers around the world are stacking cereal on their sleeping children's heads and sharing the photos on social media with the hashtag #CheerioChallenge.

>> Read more trending stories

According to CNN, the lighthearted competition started a few days ago when Quinn was "trapped" under his snoozing 3-week-old son, Maxton, with a bowl of Cheerios nearby. Naturally, he started stacking the cereal on Maxton's nose.

"I'd take a picture but then I'd start laughing and it'd topple over," Quinn said. "So I'd start again, take a picture and it'd topple over. The highest I got to is five."

>> PHOTOS: Hottest celebrity dads

Soon after Quinn posted one of his photos to Life of Dad's Twitter account, the challenge quickly spread as dads tried to outdo one another.

Even rapper Macklemore couldn't resist.

Cheerio baby stack challenge.  #20 #baby #stack A photo posted by @macklemore on Jun 17, 2016 at 3:40pm PDT<script async defer src="//"></script>

"It's pretty bananas how it took off," Quinn told CNN.

Read more here.

97.1 The River 500 Memorial Day Weekend Countdown

Celebrate the start of summer!

With the 500 greatest rock songs of all time! All voted by you!

All through the Memorial Day Weekend. We'll countdown the 500 greatest rock songs as determined by your votes.

Don't miss a single song! Download The River App and take us wherever you might be kicking off your summer!

Download for Android | Apple

Friday Morning May 27th through Monday 30th.

The 10 best beaches in America

It's time to hit the beach!

But if you haven't made plans to visit the shore, Dr. Beach has his suggestions on ones that are not to be missed. 

>> Read more trending stories  

Did your favorite oceanside destination make the cut?

>>Related: 56 healthy burger recipes for grilling season

Take a look below:

<iframe src="//;border=false" width="100%" height="750" frameborder="no" allowtransparency="true"></iframe><script src="//;border=false"></script>[View the story "Top 10 beaches of 2016" on Storify]

Best freebies and deals for Memorial Day weekend

Memorial Day is one of the top shopping weekends of the year. Retailers offer goods at deep discounts, and they offer deals for current and former military members.

>> Read more trending stories  

Here is a compilation of some of the best deals and freebies, with help from DealNews and

7-Eleven: Buy one Slurpee, get a second for free now through May 30 at participating stores. The offer applies to all sizes.

Amazon: Receive 60 percent off some clothing, and use your prime membership to get free two-day shipping.

Best Buy: Receive up to 35 percent off select items including microwaves and stoves through June 8.

Boston Market: On Memorial Day, receive 25 percent off any family meal at participating locations by using this coupon.

The Children’s Place: Receive 50 percent to 60 percent off everything online, including clearance. The popular children’s clothing and accessories retailer also is offering free shipping Memorial Day weekend. The deal ends May 30, DealNews says.

Helzberg Diamonds: Members of the military receive a 10 percent discount on both in-store and online purchases.

Home Depot: Receive up to 25 percent off select appliances, grills and more through June 1. Plus, get up to 50 percent off select patio furniture, DealNews says.

Hooters: Current and former members of the military can receive a free meal on Memorial Day of either a buffalo chicken salad, buffalo chicken sandwich, Hooters burger, or 10-piece boneless or traditional wings, reports.

LegoLand Florida: DealNews says active-duty servicemembers get free admission to LegoLand’s themepark and water park all year long. Military families, National Guard members and veterans receive up to 25 percent off tickets and get a second day free.

Microsoft: If you’re an active-duty member of the military, get the entire Microsoft Office suite for $9.95, DealNews says.

Newegg: DealNews says the tech site is offering military personnel a one-year Newegg Premier membership for free. Shipments to an APO address also receive 50 percent off shipping.

Old Navy: On Memorial Day, save 50 percent off select items online, plus free shipping on orders of $50 or more.

Perry Ellis: During the store’s Memorial Day weekend sale, get an extra 40 percent off sitewide. Orders over $75 get free shipping, DealNews says.

Ralph Lauren: A couple of coupon codes can save you quite a bit of money on the Ralph Lauren website. Use code “MEM30” to receive 30 percent off select sale items, and use “FREESHIP125” to get free shipping off orders of $125 or more.

Sprint: Active-duty military, reservists, veterans and National Guard members receive a $100 reward card and a 15 percent discount on Memorial Day.

Stride Rite: Using coupon code “MAY40” through May 31, receive 40 percent off some styles online.

Twin Peaks: On Memorial Day, current and former service members, police, firefighters and first responders receive a free meal from the restaurant’s special Memorial Day Appreciation menu, says.

Winn-Dixie: Through May 31, the grocer is offering customers a buy-one-get-one-free deal on spare ribs. The company also is donating $1 to Hope For The Warriors for every dozen roses or Stars and Stripes bouquet sold.

Memorial Day sales: What to buy, what to skip

If you are planning to shop the Memorial Day sales this weekend, you may want to consider these tips before you hit the stores.

The deal-hunting website has put together a list of recommendations on what to buy, and what to skip this Memorial Day.

The website says you can expect to save big on summer travel,  clothing and mattresses. But the site’s deal hunters suggest waiting to purchase other big-ticket items like laptops and power tools.

>> Read more trending stories  

Here is’s complete list of recommendations:

Summer Travel – BUY

 Online travel sites like Expedia, Priceline, Orbitz and compete to feature their best offers on airfare and hotel deals, cruise deals and car rental coupons for Memorial Day shoppers, according to FatWallet.

Summer Clothing – BUY

Memorial Day marks the kick-off of the summer clothing retail season. Roughly 34 percent of Memorial Day shoppers buy clothes and another 21 percent buy shoes, prompting deep discounts from top retailers, FatWallet said. 

Mattresses – BUY 

There is no better time to buy a mattress, or mattress sets, than during Memorial Day sales, according to FatWallet.  Specialty sleep, furniture and department store retailers typically offer their biggest savings and brand selection of the year during the Memorial Day holiday. 

Appliances – BUY and WAIT –

Home improvement stores like Home Depot, Sears and Lowe’s will feature Memorial Day deals with up to 50 percent off refrigerators, ranges, washers and dryers, etc. that rival their Black Friday prices, FatWallet said. 

Laptops – WAIT



Like TVs, there are always one-off sales for laptops, especially older models. While roughly 12 percent of shoppers will look for deals on electronics during Memorial Day sales, the best time to buy a new laptop is during Back to School sales in July, or on Black Friday when selection and prices on MacBooks, touchscreen laptops and 2-in-1 hybrid tablet/laptops can drop as much as 50 percent, according to FatWallet. 

Patio Furniture and Grills – BUY and WAIT

Spring discounting on patio furniture and grills hit its peak during Memorial Day weekend. Prices go back up in June until summer clearance in the fall when these items are cheapest, but are also ready for storage, FatWallet said. 

Lawn & Garden Supplies – BUY 

May brings sweeping spring sales on lawn and gardening supplies that ramp up as Memorial Day nears. Holiday deals offer some of the best seasonal discounts on mulch, soil, plant food, fertilizers, pesticides and grass seed, FatWallet said. 

Power Tools – WAIT 

A recent survey reports Father’s Day is the best time to buy tools, and 1 in 10 buy them as gifts for dads. Although some tool deals in May offer good savings, especially for outdoor power equipment, waiting until June offers a better over-all selection of savings options that can rival Black Friday tool deals, according to FatWallet.

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