Historic salt lick offers pleasant getaway

Boone’s Lick historic site is the remnant of an old salt mine that operated during the 1800s. A walk down the tree-shaded stairs leads you to the salt springs, creeks and areas where workers once toiled over salt furnaces, even during hot summer months.

Tourists are guided along the salt-making process and can look at preserved remains of the old mine.

Mo. candidates benefit from loophole

JEFFERSON CITY — Democrats and Republicans alike have found a clever way to get around Missouri’s campaign contribution limits. And as the 2004 campaigns heat up, the practice appears to becoming more popular.

Democratic Gov. Bob Holden has benefited. So has his Republican challenger, Secretary of State Matt Blunt. And Democratic gubernatorial challenger, State Auditor Claire McCaskill, a beneficiary to a lesser extent, is complaining about the practice to the Missouri Ethics Commission.

Ways to overcome a summer slump

For a couple of weeks, the dreary weather threw a monkey wrench into my reading program. I had a hard time concentrating, even though the library supplied me with a steady flow of interesting material. My latest writing project was requiring an inordinate amount of research, which usually is enough to spur me onward in my quest for a good read. For some reason, it hadn’t worked this time, and I think I had only completed two books in the past month compared to the two a week I would normally speed through.

The rain had not been conducive to my other normal activities. I still had not been fishing, and the paint that I purchased to paint the house was still in the storage shed. I am one of those people who always seem to be more affected by weather than others. My mood depends largely on the sun. Last week, I met only the third person in my life who absolutely loves gloomy days, and she’s been on a roll while I was just drifting from day to day and barely able to manage a faint smile.

Summer science institute meets

Teachers from some of Missouri’s high-need schools will spend three weeks learning ways to improve their students’ science achievement from a group of MU professors and teaching assistants.

Starting today, the Physical Science Summer Institute for Middle Level Teachers will target schools with poverty levels greater than 20 percent and low MAP scores. “High-need” schools are those that meet federal guidelines for poverty and teacher quality as outlined in the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act.

Schools debate flaws of tenure

WASHINGTON — The decades-old tradition of tenure protects teachers, often frustrates principals and has even surfaced as an issue in the presidential campaign. Now tenure itself is under review.

Tenure guarantees that public school teachers who have this protection cannot be fired without legitimate cause and due process, perhaps even a court hearing. Almost every state provides tenure in some form.

Grand master

WIMBLEDON, England — Three championship matches, three victories: Roger Federer is a master of the Grand Slam final.

Federer, the top seed, overcame Andy Roddick’s power game Sunday to win his second straight Wimbledon title and cement his status as the game’s No. 1 player.

3 Cards are NL All-Stars

NEW YORK — Roger Clemens was picked for his first National League All-Star team Sunday, and Mike Piazza was elected by fans to start the July 13 game in Houston, putting the Rocket in line to throw the opening pitch to his nemesis.

Clemens, a nine-time All-Star in the American League, was among five starting pitchers voted to the National League team by major league players, managers and coaches. With a 10-2 record in his first season with his hometown Astros, Clemens is likely to start for the NL.

Cards hang on to sweep series

ST. LOUIS — Midway through the season, Jeff Suppan and the St. Louis Cardinals are peaking.

Suppan pitched four-hit ball into the eighth and Jim Edmonds threw out a runner at the plate in the fourth, helping the Cardinals beat the Seattle Mariners 2-1 on Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.

Safe first stage for Armstrong

CHARLEROI, Belgium — Lance Armstrong played it safe in the first full stage of the Tour de France.

The five-time winner knows he has plenty of time.

City takes over fireworks show

The Columbia Cosmopolitan Luncheon Club has always been a part of Columbia’s Fourth of July fireworks display — until this year.

In 1952, the club started to sponsor a fireworks display in the Cosmopolitan Recreation Area. The members sold barbecue chicken plates during an all-day picnic that also featured games supervised by the Columbia Parks and Recreation Department.

Errors were minor ones, Mizzou says

How many minor NCAA infractions add up to one major infraction?

There’s no definite answer, but the athletics authority has the option to collectively consider multiple secondary violations allegedly committed by the MU basketball staff as one major violation.

MU responses to NCAA allegations

MU officials will meet with the NCAA infractions committee next month to review the entire case. After the review, the infractions committee will decide the severity of the charges and possible penalties.

1. Tony Harvey, associate men’s basketball coach, bought meals for 10 coaches affiliated with the Amateur Athletic Union. Additionally, Harvey, head coach Quin Snyder, and assistant coach Lane Odom had several impermissible contacts with prospective student-athletes when they attended events in which the athletes participated.

Mental examination of Rios before trial likely

At the news conference held after former Columbia police officer Steven Rios was arrested Thursday, special prosecutor Morley Swingle addressed the question of mental competence and the law.

“In Missouri, a person can be found guilty by reason of mental disease or defect if they suffer from a mental disease or defect that makes them incapable of understanding the nature or consequences of what they are doing,” he said. “Whether that happens in this case, that’s up to the defense.”

Runge nature center a hit

Imagine spending a peaceful summer afternoon hiking through rugged hills scattered with old oak and hickory trees, flowering dogwoods and a colorful palette of woodland wildflowers. You hear the cheerful sound of warblers and diligent woodpeckers as you make your way across the soft, woodchip trail, on the lookout for white-tailed deer, red foxes and flying squirrels.

This and other relaxing, educational encounters with Missouri wildlife await you about 30 miles southeast of Columbia at the Runge Conservation Nature Center in Jefferson City.

Swapping stamps for cards across the country

Missouri hasn’t seen a food “stamp” in six years.

Taking government assistance out of the paper era and into the age of technology, the paper coupons that were once redeemable for food products have given way to Electronic Benefit Transfer. EBT works similarly to a debit card, allowing users to “swipe” for their grocery items.

Goodbye, Ken! Hunky Blaine is Barbie toy boy

More than 2 million girls worldwide logged onto in May and June to help their favorite Barbie doll choose a new crush.

The votes were tabulated and the results released to the public Tuesday. Barbie’s new beau, Blaine, an Australian native with “sun-bleached hair and surf-bronzed skin,” now resides in Malibu, Calif., where he surfs, snowboards and skydives, Mattel said.

Company has a patent for success

Two brightly colored maps adorn the walls of Charles Ekstam’s office. Sprinkled with green, yellow, red, and blue push pins, the maps of the United States and the world illustrate the places where Jefferson City-based Ekstam Worldwide has sold its Fuel Preporator system. There are more than 30 countries marked, and many more U.S. cities.

As Ekstam shuffles through the binders that stand on the bookshelf behind his desk, he pulls out a listing of U.S. patents dating back to the 1800s.

Sixth dies in plant shooting

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — A sixth person shot in a rampage at a meatpacking plant died Saturday, and investigators said they still have not determined the gunman’s motive.

Authorities identified the shooter as Elijah Brown, 21, of Kansas City, Kan., who was hired at the ConAgra Foods Inc. plant in September 2003, laid off because of production downturns, and then called back to work a few months ago.

Gunshots fired outside local club

Two men were taken to University Hospital with serious head injuries after an altercation early Saturday outside Lou’s Palace on Walnut Street.

Police overheard three gunshots, but neither of the men injured suffered gunshot wounds, police said. The men, 22 and 25, were from Fulton and St. Louis.

Police chase results in a robbery arrest

Police arrested two men Friday in connection with a home invasion robbery. The arrests came after a traffic chase, a car crash and pursuit on foot.

At 6:02 p.m., officers were dispatched to the 10 block of Granada Boulevard for a robbery in progress. Police said the suspects entered an apartment and pointed a handgun at the victim, a 23-year-old woman. The suspects demanded property from the victim and left. Witnesses saw them drive away. Within a few minutes of the robbery, police located the suspects’ vehicle. The suspects refused to stop, throwing a handgun and property from the vehicle. They were then involved in an accident at the intersection of Green Meadows and Providence roads. No one was hurt, but the police then chased the suspects on foot.