A diverse mix

The shelves of movies at Ninth Street Video in Columbia look like a miniature model of the city itself. Films from Russia, Vietnam, Africa and Latin America share the space with mainstream blockbusters and works from black and Hispanic directors.

The store’s owners keep up the variety based on what consumers are buying.

An artsy town

A bronze animal “Jamboree” adds character to Courthouse Square and the 10-foot abstract bird “La Colomba” takes flight outside the Columbia Public Library. These sculptures are two examples of how Columbia demonstrates its penchant for art through public efforts designed to bring culture and beauty to the city.

Percent for Art is the program responsible for publicly funded art such as a sculpture at the city Activity and Recreation Center. The program was started in 1997 and allows for 1 percent of the budget of city construction or renovation projects to be set aside for on-site public art. The Columbia City Council made the allowance because it felt that art enriches and improves the city. It also gives artists an opportunity to demonstrate their work in public places, not just in private galleries.

Once a Tiger, always a Tiger

When it came time for Jill Villasana to choose a college, the decision was a no-brainer, she says.

Villasana grew up in Columbia, the daughter of die-hard MU football fans. “My parents had season tickets since before I was born,” she said. Her mother and aunt are both MU alumna. Her family always took part in Homecoming celebrations, which gave her a taste of Greektown traditions years before she would become a Delta Gamma sorority member.

Record ride for Armstrong

PARIS — Lance Armstrong raced onto the crowd-lined Champs-Elysées as a yellow blur, bathed in the shimmering light of a 24-carat, gold-leaf bike, a golden helmet and the race leader’s yellow jersey.

Earlier, he let up on the pedals long enough to sip some celebratory champagne.

Students learn value of education, community service

Anne-Marie Foley, MU director of Service-Learning, is a firm believer that the function of institutions of higher education is not only to educate students but to make them into active citizens.

Foley decided to put this belief into action in 1990, when she began discussing with students and colleagues how to increase community involvement. As a result, the Office of Service-Learning at MU was established in 1995 and now supports more than 2,100 students in 92 classes.

New heights

Jackie Brunholtz is starting her comeback.

Brunholtz, 20, was one of 64 competitors in her division of the Show-Me-State Games’ gymnastics competition Sunday at Flipz USA. It was her first meet in six years.

Learning through faith

For students looking for a spiritual home away from home, campus religious organizations offer a multitude of ways for new students to worship, make friends and get involved. Here’s a sampling of the organizations that are active on or near campus:

The Baptist Student Union, on campus at 812 Hitt St., will host New 2 MU, an annual social event for incoming freshmen, on Aug. 21.

RealLife, the BSU’s weekly student gathering for worship and fellowship, meets Thursdays at 7 and 9 p.m. A special Welcome RealLife at 7 p.m. on Aug. 26 will include food and socializing. “We hope to give students a taste of what our community is like,” said Kelly Lewis, associate campus minister.

Errors aid Mavericks

The bottom of the Mid-Missouri Mavericks’ batting order rose to the top Sunday night.

Rafael Lara sparked the Mavs in a 6-4 victory against the first-place Rockford RiverHawks at Taylor Stadium.

Morris gives giant effort

ST. LOUIS — Motivated by his worst start of the year, Matt Morris was at his best against the San Francisco Giants.

Morris threw a seven-hitter for his seventh career shutout and the St. Louis Cardinals took advantage of Jerome Williams’ wildness for a 6-0 victory on Sunday.

40-car pileup at the county fair

Sometime during the second heat of the Boone County Fair’s Demolition Derby, Mark Winscott’s disfigured mass of an automobile finally died. Up until that point, Winscott and his spray painted chariot of destruction refused to give up. The first time, he got stuck on a mud barrier that formed the outline of the course. His car still ran, but in a demolition derby, the cars are like sharks. If they’re not mobile, they’re considered dead.

New Methodist bishop hopes to further church unity

He may be taking on a higher leadership role, but Robert Schnase, the newly appointed bishop of the Missouri Conference of the United Methodist Church, has no intention of giving up his commitment to direct involvement at the local level.

“I hope to be able to leave the office and put on the work clothes from time to time,” Schnase said. “I love hands-on work projects. I want to help local congregations to be stronger, more vital and confident in their mission as disciples of Christ.”