Lightning strike sparks house fire [Photo]

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Photo of the Week [Photo]

A cyclist waits at a red light next to a car on Ninth Street on April 14. The city is planning to improve intersections with crosswalks and bike lanes to make the streets safer for Columbia's bikers.

Before the big show: behind the scenes at high school music festival [Photo]

Shayne Dorrell of Troy Buchanan High School practices just minutes before his snare drumming performance on Thursday at the Missouri State High School Activities Association Music Festival in Memorial Union.

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Sean Reed of Warrensburg High School empties his euphonium's spit valve in a restroom in Memorial Union.

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Caitlin Walker of Eldon High School talks with her band director Rex McCargar just minutes before her French horn performance on Thursday at the Missouri State High School Activities Association Music Festival in Memorial Union.

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Amanda Haberberger of Troy Buchanan High School practices in the Memorial Union student lounge before her French horn performance on Thursday at the Missouri State High School Activities Association Music Festival.

Former MU runner Miller an Olympic hopeful [Photo]

MU Alum Neville Miller trains for the Olympics at Mizzou's Audrey J. Walton Track. He hopes to compete in the 800-meter race.

Historic Boonville bridge prompts investigation of Coast Guard procedures [Photo]

The historic railroad bridge in Boonville has spanned the Missouri River since 1932, but it is no longer in use.

Proposed Garth Avenue pathway [Graphic]

Dam break drains Moon Valley Lake [Graphic]

A soprano's song [Photo]

Emily Bennett smiles with her co-stars during their practice for the opera "Elixir of Love" on April 15, 2008.

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Emily Bennett walks away from the rest of the cast of "Elixir of Love" during a practice session on April 15. She and her group, Show-Me Opera, were practicing the opera's opening scene before the shows debut several days later.

Young musical director's 'Schoolhouse Rock' premieres Thursday [Photo]

Izzie Baldwin directs a group dance audition for “Schoolhouse Rock Live! Jr.” on Jan. 26 at Benton Elementary. Baldwin attends Stephens College and is the youngest director Performing Arts in Children's Education has used for one of its shows.

Hominy Branch dam break dries up Moon Valley Lake [Photo]

Moon Valley Lake in Columbia doesn’t quite live up to its name anymore, as evidenced by this photo taken Saturday morning. The lake has dried up because a dam on Hominy Branch broke in March, leaving a mud flat behind.

Changing directions: Developers call for streamlined planning process [Photo]

A model duplex stands near the golf course at Old Hawthorne on the eastern fringe of the city. It took months for the developer, Billy Sapp, and his attorney, Bruce Beckett, to push the proposal through the Columbia City Council, primarily because of Harg residents’ efforts to block annexation of the land.

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Construction of ABC Labs is progressing at Discovery Ridge, a research park that’s been jointly advocated by MU, the City Council and the Boone County Commission. The development is one reason the state is building a new interchange at U.S. 63 and Gans Road.

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Tracks from heavy machinery remain in the exposed earth at what eventually will become the Crosscreek Center along U.S. 63 at the eastern end of Stadium Boulevard. Stadium 63 Properties failed to win approval for a car lot on the land after residents protested during public hearings that lasted seven hours.

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The Vanderveen Crossing subdivision on the city’s north side includes hundreds of homes but generated little dissent during public hearings before the City Council. Don Stamper of the Central Missouri Development Council said projects south of Interstate 70 take longer to gain approval because they get more attention.

Stephens riding club revamps horse show [Photo]

Stephens College freshman Shannon Stein washes her horse, Teddy, in the Stephens Equestrian Center. Stein is an equine business management major and will show Teddy on Thursday night at the 81st Prince of Wales Horse Show. All horses shown are owned by Stephens College, its students and its alumni.