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New program aims to help Utah smokers quit

SALT LAKE CITY — Smoking may be less present in Utah than in other states, but it is still the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the state.

The Utah Department of Health is pushing people to kick the habit, and on Wednesday Adam Bramwell of the Utah Tobacco Prevention and Control Program came to the FOX 13 News studio to discuss their new campaign to help people quit. The new campaign is called Way to Quit, and it embraces the wide variety of methods people use to quit smoking.

See the video above for information about the program, and click here for more details as well as resources for those who hope to quit smoking.

New program seeks to ‘Bridge the Gap’ to combat hunger

WEBER COUNTY, Utah – A religious organization is starting a program that will help Utah children who are in need of food get additional nutritional support.

The effort is the work of Utah Catholic Community Services, who estimates there are 16,000 children in Weber County who need food support.

“There are so many people in our communities across the state who are struggling with the very real issues of hunger,” said Marcie Valdez, who is the director for Northern Utah Catholic Community Services.

Valdez said the northern Utah organization distributes about 200,000 pounds of food each month, serving about 2,300 households. They gave away 2.5 million pounds of food in 2013.

Collection shows history of Weber Co. Sheriff’s Office

WEBER COUNTY, Utah — A collection of memorabilia details the history of the Weber County Sheriff’s Office, and the collection is largely the work of one officer.

The collection features photos, old uniforms and police tools from the past.

Some items are already on display in the sheriff’s office lobby, and more display cases will be added to host the memorabilia.

FOX 13 News’ Kiersten Nuñez took a look at the collection and spoke with folks behind it, see the video above for details.

Want to see Utah’s liquor store inventory? Click here

SALT LAKE CITY — Becky Rosenthal knows first-hand what it’s like to find a great drink on Utah liquor store shelves one day, only to find it gone the next.

“We’ve gone from store to store and bounced around until we’ve found the right thing,” said Rosenthal, who writes about food and drink in Utah on her website, theslcfoodie.com.

Recently, the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control quietly made its inventory available online for everyone to see. Through a search engine tool on the DABC’s website, customers can look up a particular bottle or type of drink (say, “merlot” or “absinthe”) and view the brands and how many bottles are available at what liquor store in the state.

Experts discuss health insurance enrollment numbers in Utah

SALT LAKE CITY — President Obama is calling the Affordable Care Act a success, since millions of Americans have signed up for health care on the federal exchanges.

But how many Utahns have signed up and are now covered? FOX 13 News spoke with experts at Arches Health Plan, who said it’s still too soon to call Utah’s enrollment numbers good or bad.

The official report has not come in yet, but based on the estimates so far, Utah’s youth enrollment is above the national percentage.

After a rough roll out of the new health care exchange under the Affordable Care Act, President Obama was eager to announce the national enrollment numbers Thursday. He said 8 million Americans have enrolled, with 35 percent of those people under the age of 35.

In Utah, no official statewide numbers have been released, but a spokesperson for Arches Health Plan said about 68,000 Utahns have enrolled, with 47 percent in the coveted 35 and younger demographic.

Kairos Aerialympics preview

Dave Nemeth went to Kairos Aerial and Pole Fitness for a preview of the Kairos Aerialympics event.

For more info, visit http://www.dancekairos.com/#!upcoming-events/ce69

Students participate in ‘Great Utah Shakeout’ earthquake drill

SALT LAKE CITY — Emergency responders, firefighters, law enforcement officials and other emergency personnel throughout the state are joining Utah residents to participate in the “Great Utah Shakeout” earthquake drill Thursday morning.

The Great Utah Shakeout is part of a worldwide effort to increase awareness of earthquake emergency procedures and improve earthquake preparedness.

“There’s a million different things that people can do to be prepared, but the Great Utah Shakeout is one of the great things we can do as a state to be unified in all of our preparedness efforts,” said Joe Dougherty, Utah Division of Emergency Management.

The Great Utah Shakeout began at 10:15 a.m. with a mock earthquake. Event organizers ask Utahns to “drop, cover and hold,” as if a real earthquake were happening, at that time.