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The Merritt Centennials have a rare Friday night off in the BC Hockey League as they prepare to host Penticton tomorrow.

The Cents are five points behind fifth-place Westside in the Interior Conference after the Warriors dumped P-G 6-3 last night.

Merritt is five points ahead of the seventh-place Spruce Kings, who host Trail tonight.

Elsewhere, Westside visits Quesnel.

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Following the plunge of a vehicle from the top of the Norgaard viewpoint late last month, the viewpoint will remain closed to all potential users.

Owner of Norgaard Readymix, and the property in question, Henry Norgaard says the closure is to any and all people, unless permission is granted.

A road to the the popular spot was opened a number of years ago by Norgaard as a contribution to the citizens of Merritt, enabling the view to be shared with everyone.

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The renewal period was completed earlier this week for people camping or attending the Merritt Mountain Music Festival in 2009.

Claude Lelievre, head of Active Mountain Entertainment says the response has been great.

Lelievre says he has no plans to change anything from the format of the last festival in 2009.

Tickets for the Merritt Mountain Music Festival, set for July 7-10 in 2011, go on sale Monday.

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The manager of the Merritt Food Bank is hoping for a good showing of support from the community as it embarks on it's annual November Food Drive.

Karen Flick says the Merritt Fire Department is on board again this year.

Flick says the Food Drive will likely carry on until mid afternoon tomorrow.

And she says the hope is to canvas every area of Merritt this year.

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The case of a Merritt-area man facing three animal abuse charges after a dog was dragged behind a vehicle June 17 has now shifted from Merritt to Kamloops Provincial Court.

Bobby Elliott was expected to enter a plea in Merritt on Tuesday but he wasn't in court and is now expected to enter a plea November 25 in Kamloops Court.

Elliott was charged after an incident on an area road where he allegedly injured a golden labrador retriever dog by dragging it behind his pickup truck.

The dog has since recovered from the injuries and was adopted out to a home in an undisclosed location.

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