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It's become an annual tradition for NPR to host a live band in our studios for a full day. This year, we upped the ante and invited around 70 musicians from Washington, D.C.'s National Symphony Orchestra to play the musical interludes between stories on All Things Considered.

The private company SpaceX has announced it plans to send two passengers on a mission beyond the moon in late 2018.

If the mission goes forward, it would be the "first time humans have traveled beyond low-Earth orbit since the days of Apollo," as NPR's Nell Greenfieldboyce told our Newscast unit.

The two private citizens approached the company about the idea and have already paid a sizable deposit, CEO Elon Musk told reporters in a conference call. These private individuals will also bear the cost of the mission.

A Minnesota police officer accused of fatally shooting Philando Castile in a St. Paul suburb last July pleaded not guilty to second-degree manslaughter and two other charges.

St. Anthony police officer Jeronimo Yanez entered his plea in a brief hearing in Ramsey County district court.

It's been five years since the death of Trayvon Martin — and the outrage that sparked the Black Lives Matter movement.

Martin — 17 years old, black and unarmed — was shot by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer in Sanford, Fla.

President Trump's initial budget proposal isn't enough to expand the military in the way he proposed.

Trump campaigned on the need to add tens of thousands more troops to the Army and Marine Corps, field a Navy with 350 warships or more and also to upgrade the Air Force. The $54 billion he's seeking to increase the Defense Department budget this year would represent a funding boost — but not one that would pay for an expansion on the scale Trump endorsed.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions pledged to devote federal resources to combat violent crime and to shore up morale across the nation's police departments, on Monday in his first on-the-record briefing as the top U.S. law enforcement officer.

When it comes to climate change, we often think of the cars we drive and the energy we use in our homes and offices. They are, after all, some of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions. But what about the toast you ate for breakfast this morning?

A new study published Monday in Nature Plants breaks down the environmental cost of producing a loaf of bread, from wheat field to bakery. It finds that the bulk of the associated greenhouse gas emissions come from just one of the many steps that go into making that loaf: farming.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

This post has been updated

The Department of Justice is reversing the federal government's position in an important voting rights case, involving a Texas voter ID law. The switch was not unexpected following the election of Donald Trump and confirmation of Jeff Sessions as Attorney General. Both Trump and Sessions claim voter fraud is a major problem and have backed voter ID laws.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Goodbye, Tamara

Tamara Ashley retires from WVPE after devoting more than twenty years of service to the station. First, she volunteered at various station events for more than a decade. Since the early 2000s, she has been an underwriting account executive. Thank you, Tamara, for your dedication. All the best in your retirement.

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