WASHINGTON – Britain’s Prince Harry opened a U.S. visit devoted to the wounded victims of war at the side of one of America’s most storied wounded warriors, Sen. John McCain, at an exhibition about land mines Thursday.

For the prince, the tour in the halls of Congress was a world away from the Afghanistan war zone where he recently served for 20 weeks in an attack helicopter.

It was just as far removed from his hijinks in a Las Vegas hotel room last year, when fuzzy photos got out of a naked Harry playing strip billiards.

With a shrieking gaggle of young women straining to see him behind rope lines set back from the exhibition, the prince quizzed officials of HALO Trust, a charity which focuses on mine clearance and which had staged the display of photos, maps and mine-detection equipment.

The devastation caused by land mines was a cause taken up by the prince’s late mother, Princess Diana, and Harry has carried on that interest as well as his own charitable work for wounded veterans.

McCain, who was shot down over North Vietnam and tortured as a captive, said he cracked to the prince that “he was probably a much better pilot than I was.”

On Friday, the prince visits Arlington National Cemetery and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center before flying to Colorado for the 2013 Warrior Games in Colorado Springs.

Usher will spark Macy’s July 4th fireworks show

Usher will be the spark for Macy’s July 4th fireworks show.

The Grammy-winning singer will collaborate with Macy’s to curate the concept, music and design for the fireworks, which will be launched from barges off Manhattan.

Usher will score the music for “It Begins With a Spark,” which will feature his songs, as well as songs and hits from Rihanna, Swedish House Mafia, Jimi Hendrix and Frank Sinatra.

He will also provide visual design cues and direction for the pyrotechnics that are choreographed to the musical score.

The 37th annual fireworks display will air after the annual concert on NBC.