COLUMBIA — The week's most read stories included the death of a prominent figure in Columbia's arts community, the debut of the Harrisburg High School football team and a seasonal blue moon that rose over Columbia on Tuesday.
Here are the 10 most popular stories posted last week on ColumbiaMissourian.com, according to Google Analytics. The links provided are to stories available for Missourian digital subscribers.
- David "Willy" Wilson, a veteran actor and set designer at the Maplewood Barn Community Theater, died Aug. 17 at age 70 of lung cancer. Known for his talent for comedic roles and elaborate set designs, Wilson and his wife led a committee to raise money to rebuild the theater after it was destroyed by a fire in 2010. Wilson was a computer programmer in Columbia for almost 30 years before returning to Rock Bridge High School to teach math later in his career. He was also a soccer coach for more than 20 years, playing the game well into his 60s. (758 page views) (This life story and all obituaries and life stories are always available without a digital membership.)
- Harrisburg is traditionally known as a prep basketball powerhouse, but the town got to enjoy gridiron action for the first time on Saturday when the Harrisburg High School football team played for the first time at its football jamboree event. The team scrimmaged against Fayette, Slater and Summit Christian Academy at Central Methodist University, and Harrisburg fans were well-represented at the event. The Bulldogs will play their first game Sept. 3 against Tipton. (731 page views)
- Battle High School had its first day of fall classes on Tuesday, and students at the new school were greeted by living mascots, as a man dressed as a Spartan and a woman in a white toga sat outside the school on horses. (648 views)
- Names ending in a long "e" sound are popular among dog owners in Columbia, according to pet licenses provided by the Columbia-Boone County Department of Health and Human Services. Dog trainers at St. Louis' C.H.A.M.P. Assistance Dogs say a soft sound at the end of a dog's name helps commands flow better. (622 views)
- Mid-Missouri PrideFest took over South Fourth Street on Aug. 18. The annual event is a celebration of the state's lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning and ally community, according to the event's website. (605 views)
- Columbia was treated to a rare sight in the sky when a seasonal blue moon appeared on Tuesday. Unlike a traditional blue moon, which is the second full moon in one month, a seasonal blue moon is the third of four full moons in one season. The phenomenon occurs once every couple of years, according to MU astronomy professor Angela Speck. (598 views)
- Three Columbia women who own herds of alpacas came together to create Heartfelt LLC, a business that produces and sells products made of alpaca fleece. The products are made by FeltLOOM, a machine that turns alpaca fleece into felt for use in rugs, wall hangings and other products. (594 views)
- Although he's facing tough competition at the wide receiver position, Missouri football's Jimmie Hunt is confident he can play a bigger role in the offense and help the Tigers score this season. The junior wide receiver only caught 11 passes last year, but three of those were for touchdowns, and Hunt averaged 18.1 yards per catch. (580 views)
- Last week's most-read stories included a car crash that killed three teens, including an incoming MU freshman, and the return of Glenn's Cafe to Columbia after a 10-year absence. (567 views)
- A fire destroyed a structure in the rural area south of Columbia on Wednesday night, causing 11 apparatuses and 24 firefighters to be called to the scene. The building was a total loss, but all people and pets were accounted for after the blaze. (561 views)
Supervising editor is Elizabeth Stephens.