Harvesting the "mother lode" [Photo]

Morel mushroom enthusiast Stan Hudson harvests morels surrounding the "mother lode" tree. Hudson keeps the Mid Missouri Morels and Mushrooms blog.

Phillips hits unexpected home run against Smith-Cotton [Photo]

Ryan Phillips, sophomore pitcher for the Rock Bridge Bruins baseball team, is greeted by his team after hitting a home run during Friday night's game on April 23. The Bruins won their game against Smith-Cotton 11-3.

Students create original musical works for statewide competition [Video]

Six winners of the Creating Original Music Competition talk about their compositions. Marley Wurzer and Alicia Flavin, fifth-grade students at Lee Elementary School, won second place in the elementary song with words category for their song, “Roses in the Winter.”

Oakland Junior High School eighth-graders Ross Meneffe, Nick Roberts, and Austin Culbertson and Lange Middle School seventh-grader Isaac Baker form the band Guilty Party. The group won second place in the middle school pop category of the competition for the song “Lies.”

The Creating Original Music Competition is a Missouri program sponsored by the Sinquefield Charitable Foundation that encourages K-12 students to create and perform original works. Winners performed their compositions April 17 at the MU School of Music.

Tap Day comes to MU [Slideshow]

MU's Tap Day was held on Friday at Jesse Hall due to inclement weather.

Week in Pictures: April 17 to 23 [Slideshow]

The week in pictures, from April 17 to 23.

Sustainability section cover [Photo]

Gymnast/Journalist Alicia Hatcher [Photo]

Alicia Hatcher is a former Missouri gymnast who competed for the Tigers from 2006 to 2009. She is a journalism major who covered sports for the Missourian in 2007.

Grand-prize winning photo for Columbia Parks and Recreation contest [Photo]

Grand-prize winner Kelly Smith, 31, shot this photo of her husband Ryan and her 6-year-old son Ben at a bridge on the Hinkson Creek Trail. Smith, director of Habitat for Humanity in Jefferson City, said photography is a stress relief. "I can't draw or paint or anything like that," she said. "It's my own way to express myself."

Stephens Lake waterfall shines in photo contest [Photo]

Randy Hughes, a 47-year-old quality tech for JM Eagle, placed four times in two different categories, including a first place in the Parks and Recreation Facilities category with this photo of the new waterfall at Stephens Lake Park. "As far as nature areas, it’s just so beautiful out there,” he said. “I love landscape photography.”

Parks and Recreation contest photo of Bear Creek Trail [Photo]

Lisa Fechter, a 41-year-old office manager, took this Trails-category photo while walking with her children and dog on the Bear Creek Trail. They go for walks whenever the weather is nice. "I shoot all the time," she said. "If any of the kids stay still long enough, they're always the subjects."

Wildlife biologist shoots frog for photo contest [Photo]

Rick Hansen works two jobs for the U.S. Wildlife Reserve: one as a wildlife biologist and the other as a self-titled unofficial photographer. He said his colleagues always ask him to document what they're doing. He shot this first-place Landscape, Wildlife and Nature photo at Fairview Park in 60 degree weather that was just cold enough to slow down the cold-blooded frogs. He said the frogs would have been harder to shoot on a hotter day.

Plunge photo stands out in Parks and Recreation contest [Photo]

Colleen McDevitt, a former Missourian photographer, took this first-place photo for the Recreation Programs, Sports, Events and Classes category. It depicts former Special Olympics intern Cassie Shields winning the heart of Polar Bear Plunge judges with her then fiance, Scott Drochelman. Their teamname, "Taking the Plunge," helped the newly engaged couple win the event at Stephens Lake Park on Valentine's Day 2009.

Rock Bridge soccer's Alioto [Photo]

Rock Bridge sophomore Anna Alioto gets tripped up while chasing after the ball with Blue Valley Northwest sophomore Nicole Vermes.

Rock Bridge soccer's Monticelli [Photo]

Rock Bridge sophomore Stephanie Monticelli returns the ball to play after a shot on goal during Thursday night's game against Blue Valley Northwest at Rock Bridge High School.

MU softball dad [Photo]

Rex Hainey, father of MU sophomore pitcher Jana Hainey, shields himself from the rain during the the Tigers' game against Central Methodist on Thursday. Hainey said his outfield spot was the "best seat in the house."

MU softball's Flemming [Photo]

MU sophomore Ashley Flemming swings at a pitch during the first inning against Central Methodist.

MU softball's Young [Photo]

MU sophomore Jaydee Young slides into home plate during a game against Central Methodist on Thursday at University Field.

Musician works toward career [Video]

Mason Raithel, 16, is a musician who performed his original piece, “Voodoo,” at The Blue Note. He's hoping for a career in music.

Missouri government officials play softball for Red Cross [Video]

The Missouri legislature held its annual charity softball tournament on April 21 in Jefferson City. Teams of senators, representatives, and others connected to Missouri’s government raise money for a different charity each year. This year’s charity was the Red Cross. The State Seals, comprised of the Secretary of State’s office won this year’s tournament; here are all the teams that participated.

• Lt. Governor Peter Kinder’s team: Kinder Tweeps
• Mark Webb (House Research)’s team: Luzwick Ndrinck
• Brad Werner (House Post Office)’s team: Brad’s Bombers
• Intern team: Bennie’s All Stars
• Tim Bommel (House Photographer)’s team: SW Shockers
• Representative Jonas Hughes’ team: Tha Hit Squad
• The Governor’s Office’s team: Bulb Changers
• The Secretary of State’s Office’s team: State Seals
• Senator Ryan Mckenna’s team: O’Boys and O’Girls
• The Senate staff’s team: Whip Sox

Internal Police Department report [Graphic]

First quarter reports from January to March 2009 and 2010