Collaborative creations

Mary Beth Marrs pulls packaging, a warranty and detailed instructions out of a smallish cardboard box. Next comes a black box with a cord — a machine older people can use to click on lights and other electric devices by remote control.

The socket bears a tiny MU logo.

Name swap suggested for SMSU

JEFFERSON CITY — A deal is in the works to trade $200 million in bond proposals for the name of Missouri State University.

Sen. Ken Jacob, D-Columbia, filibustered the bill that would have changed the name of Southwest Missouri State University to Missouri State University last session. He suggested the trade-off on bond proposals for the UM system to Sen. Peter Kinder, R-Cape Girardeau, Tuesday during a hearing on the name-change bill.

State sees price spike at gas pump

Lauren Phillips thinks Columbia drivers have it good when it comes to gas prices. The St. Charles resident was on her way to visit family in Belton on Tuesday afternoon when she stopped to fill up her tank at the Conoco on I-70 Drive SW.

“A buck-forty-seven is pretty cheap,” she said. “Fuel was like over a buck-sixty back home.”

Jeep fire remains a mystery

Michelle Ricketts, daughter of Mary Coronado-Leija Baker, and Michelle’s stepmother Angela Ricketts arrived to a horrific scene when they turned onto Stone Street on Monday.

“Michelle and I went over to visit with her; we pulled up on everything,” said Angela Ricketts, a longtime friend of Baker’s. “She was already gone, but the detectives and police officers and everybody were still there. We didn’t know what had happened, so it was a pretty big shock.”

GOP resists Holden union fee rule

JEFFERSON CITY — Gov. Bob Holden’s effort to allow unions to take money from nonunion state workers was voted down by a House rules committee Tuesday.

By a party-line vote, the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules sent to the full House a resolution recommending the removal of the service fee rule.

Forum to answer mad cow questions

Although it has been a couple of weeks since the most recent mad cow disease scare, some consumers are still concerned about bovine spongiform encephalopathy.

In response, the Missouri Department of Agriculture and the agriculture and health sciences departments at MU will hold a question-and-answer session about BSE and similar diseases at 1 p.m. today at MU’s Veterinary Medical Auditorium.

Girl Scout cookies back on the market

If you made dieting your New Year’s resolution, read no further. On the other hand, if the words “Thin Mints” make your mouth water, you’re in luck.

The Girl Scouts have begun their annual cookie sale, which will end Jan. 25. At $3.50, up 50 cents from last year, the price may be well worth it. In addition to traditional favorites like Tagalongs and Samoas, the Girl Scouts are introducing two new flavors: Double Dutch Chocolate Chocolate Chip and low-fat Lemon Coolers.

Celebration embraces diversity

Mark Kelty’s directed plays before but nothing like this.

Kelty, who runs the Teen to Teen InterACT Theatre, is coordinating the theatrical program Thursday morning for the 11th Annual Columbia Values Diversity Celebration.

‘04 Special Olympics in Columbia

Columbia already is host to the Senior Show-Me Games and the Show-Me State Games. Now it will feature the Special Olympics Missouri State Summer Games as well. Naomi Cupp, board chairwoman of Special Olympics Missouri, announced Tuesday that MU will host the Special Olympics Summer Games for the next four years. Lorah Steiner, executive director of the Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau, said the Olympics will bring a $4 million boost to the local economy. “It is an opportunity to strengthen our program and reward the community for their exemplary support,” Cupp said. Columbia was chosen for its exceptional hospitality, ...

Bill to seek tax-break accountability

JEFFERSON CITY — Missourians would learn more about businesses that are getting special tax breaks under a plan to be proposed in Missouri’s Senate.

Tax subsidies to the tune of tens of millions of dollars are issued each year to businesses that participate in one of about 50 state programs — with the expectation that those businesses provide public benefits, such as bringing new development to impoverished areas or preserving historic buildings.

Mother charged with child abuse

A Columbia woman was charged on Tuesday with two counts of felony child abuse involving her two children, ages 3 and 5.

Yolanda Gail Brewster, 24, of the 1200 block of Elleta Boulevard, was arrested Monday.

Bruins wrap it up quickly

One-sided matches led to a quick win for the Rock Bridge wrestling team.

The Bruins defeated Marshall 46-24 on Tuesday at Rock Bridge.

Snyder wants Missouri to focus

Since the season’s start, the Missouri basketball team has desperately searched for an identity. If nothing else, an explanation for its misery.

On Monday, it found it: Up and down emotion, sluggish to loose balls, no defensive communication, frenzied on offense.

Unrau set to face former teammate

Evan Unrau had a unique experience this summer; she got to know her competition.

The Missouri women’s basketball team takes on Nebraska tonight at 7 at Hearnes Center.

Missouri-KU fight draws big attention

Given that fights in women’s college basketball are rare, Saturday’s postgame fight between players from Missouri and Kansas is attracting plenty of interest.

Coupled with the fight being between longtime rivals and was the first postgame brawl in the seven-year history of Big 12 Conference women’s basketball, it is no wonder Missouri coach Cindy Stein and Kansas coach Marian Washington are overwhelmed by the attention the fight is getting.

Shopping smarter

Terry Gatewood doesn’t see grocery shopping as a chore. For her, it’s a hobby.

“To me, it’s great fun,” Gatewood said. “I consider it a challenge. They’re trying to take my money away from me, and I’m trying to keep it.”

Planning helps when cooking economically in college

The microwave is set on high and going on two minutes. Samuel Martin, a junior education major at MU, is preparing frozen pizza for his lunch and has to dash to class soon. Sometimes, this is his only meal for the day.

Martin knows how to eat well, but he says he cannot eat the way he’d like to when he has a lot of work to do and a limited budget.