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Below-The-Fold: From Earth Quake Prep To Mars

There's only so much time in a 30-minute broadcast for all the news that happens each day and only so many stories a 24-hour cable channel can on the air or that big newspapers can pay attention to. Okay, so there is a lot of space out there for stories that don't make the national news agenda. But just because you might not be seeing it or hearing about it doesn't mean other news isn't happening.

Sometimes it takes days for an important story to work its way from the local level, through state and regional press and to the national level – if it ever does. It's a big country and an even bigger world and one of the things we're going to try to do for you from time to time is help keep you informed with some of the stories that are not being covered by the bigger outlets but that deserve some attention nonetheless.

It's gotten a little notice but not as much as the ongoing San Francisco Chronicle series should be receiving. The series of reports on the probability and preparations for a major earthquake in the Bay area is eerily reminiscent of a similar series the New Orleans Times-Picayune ran about possible hurricane damage way back in 2002. In more uplifting news, the Columbia (SC) State details a remarkably smooth operation in that town in dealing with an influx of Katrina evacuees.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch notes the surge in scooter sales in response to higher gas prices. The Hartford Courant profiles a local leader of next month's planned Millions More march, a follow-up to 1995's Million Man march.

The Los Angeles Times previews the next generation of parking meters being rolled out in some CA locals – and possibly soon to a busy street near you. The Orlando Sentinel has a special interest in NASA's Monday announcement of its plan to return to the moon with manned spaceflight – and then on to Mars. It's a story that received coverage elsewhere, but has special significance to people in that area.

And the Seattle Post-Intelligencer tells us how a Microsoft benefit helped almost 800 employees to lose 26,000 pounds.