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Harry Potter's magical glossary

Here is a list of important people, creatures and places in the magical world of Harry Potter for all the muggles, or ordinary humans with no magical powers.

Under Harry’s spell

Attention muggles: Don’t be alarmed at the sight of witches or wizards this weekend.

Mid-Missouri’s Harry Potter fans are out in full force, and full costume, for the opening weekend of “Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban” in local theaters.

Festival embodies diverse community

Seventeen-month-old Hayden Christiansen bounced and swayed to the twang of a fiddle and the beating of drums in Flat Branch Park on Thursday, kicking off the beginning of the Twilight Festival in Columbia.

“He loves any music or dancing,” Hayden’s mother, Jessie Christiansen, said.

Court calls for August vote on gay marriage ban

JEFFERSON CITY — In a victory for Democrats, Missourians will vote in August — not in November — on a proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage.

In a 6-1 decision Thursday, the Missouri Supreme Court said Republican Secretary of State Matt Blunt should place the issue on the August ballot but did not directly order him to do so. A Blunt spokesman said he would follow the court’s wishes.

Cable task force OKs fee increase

Cable television subscribers will see their monthly bills rise to pay for a public-access cable channel if the Columbia City Council follows through on a Thursday night recommendation from a city task force.

Meanwhile, a nonprofit board, Columbia Access Television Corp., has been set up to oversee development of the public-access outlet, which will be broadcast on Channel 8 for Mediacom cable subscribers and Channel 21 for Charter Communications subscribers. The board includes members of the Columbia Media Resource Alliance, representatives of Stephens College and other interested stakeholders.

Teenager recreates ancestor’s adventures

When Josh Loftis went to a Lewis and Clark re-enactment with his grandfather, all the family legends suddenly came to life.

“They didn’t really make sense until I was 12 and went out and I saw the boats and I saw everything that was happening,” Loftis said.

Graduation kickoff

Senior members of the Hickman High School girls’ soccer team were all smiles Thursday — and not just because they will compete in the state finals this weekend.

The team’s eight seniors received their diplomas two days early at a special ceremony held in Hickman’s auditorium.

Methodist conference to draw 1,600

The Holiday Inn Executive Center will nearly burst at the seams this weekend as ministers and laypeople from more than 900 churches convene for the Missouri Annual Conference Session of the United Methodist Church.

“Basically, the conference is where we do our year’s business,” said Karen Gordy-Panhorst, communications director for the Methodists.

Missouri Methodists petition to thank Gibson for filming ‘Passion’

Mel Gibson might be hearing from Missouri United Methodists soon.

The Jefferson Avenue United Methodist Church in Moberly sent a petition to the 2004 Missouri Annual Conference Session of the United Methodist Church that suggests thanking Gibson for making “The Passion of The Christ.” The Rev. Bob Seaman suggested the idea to the men’s group at his church.

Fox broadcasting extends its signal in region

The majority of mid-Missouri television viewers without a cable television hookup can now watch the local Fox affiliate without having to “stand on their heads” to get a signal, said Michelle Linn, KQFX director of promotions and public relations.

JW Broadcasting has completed the construction of a transmission tower in Ashland, more than doubling the number of mid-Missouri households that can receive KQFX/Fox 38.

Tigers poised for regional

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. –- Missouri coach Tim Jamieson said his team can contend in this weekend’s postseason baseball regional for several reasons.

First, the Tigers were in the postseason last season, meaning they won’t be thrilled just to be here.

Indians triumph

Hallsville might have been the visiting team on paper, but if felt right at home in Taylor Stadium on Thursday night in the Class 2 state championship.

The Indians won 11-4 against the Springfield Catholic Fightin’ Irish after scoring five runs in the seventh inning.

Teamwork crucial for Kewpies

Great unity enabled Hickman to get this far.

The Hickman girls’ soccer team plays Ursuline Academy today at 6 p.m. in the semifinals of the Class 2 state championships at Anheuser-Busch Sports Center in Fenton. It is the first time the Kewpies (20-3-1) have played in the semifinals since 1994.

MU part of Stephenson’s bio

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark – Many coaches with long-term success often speak in clichés about building a program from scratch.

Wichita State baseball coach Gene Stephenson has done it.

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