City manager candidates’ names kept under wraps

The list of candidates for the next city manager is down to five people, but the Columbia City Council won’t say who they are. The council whittled down its list of applicants for the position in a closed work session with consultant Karl Nollenberger on Monday night but decided by consensus not to release the candidates’ names until Nov. 9, the day after the vote on November ballot issues.

Financial aid funds to be released

The wait is almost over for recipients of Missouri grants and scholarships whose financial aid has been at a standstill for almost two months. Dan Peterson, director of financial assistance and outreach for the Missouri Department of Higher Education, said the money is expected to be released to schools Thursday.

MU group condemns assault

Mizzou Students for Gay and Lesbian Equality plans to raise awareness of an assault that occurred Homecoming weekend by handing out white ribbons and cards describing the assault that happened in front of the Kappa Alpha Order fraternity house. Members hope the event, running from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday at MU’s Speakers Circle, will draw attention to the victim’s accusation that his attackers called him a faggot.

High schools show generosity

After Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast, Rock Bridge High School junior Nick Evans knew he wanted to help, so he decided to put on a piano concert at Rock Bridge to raise money for relief. Another Rock Bridge junior, Jessica Roark, played as well, and the two raised just over $500.

Author to speak on conflict, pluralism

Martin E. Marty sees conflict everywhere — in schools, business, government, public affairs, arts and entertainment. The author of more than 50 books and a pastor and professor emeritus of religious history at the University of Chicago, Marty traces the constant friction in the world to pluralism, or the idea that there are many ways to look at an issue or subject.

Drought’s impact on agriculture sinks in

As David Kottman sold his crops off of a wooden trailer at the Columbia Farmers’ Market, his amiable attitude and aw-shucks smile masked a deep worry that had been building for months. Over the summer, the scorching heat and severe lack of rain in mid-Missouri killed about half of his 200-acre corn crop and damaged his soybeans.

Sound of sirens

It’s getting more difficult to keep Columbia’s old warning sirens work­ing, so city officials want voters to approve a sales tax extension that would include money to replace them. Proposition 3 seeks a three-year extension of the quarter-cent capital improvements sales tax. It would generate a total of $15 million for public safety projects, including $310,000 for the new sirens. The rest would be used for fire stations, fire trucks and equipment and a police training center. The proposition is one of six city proposals on the Nov. 8 ballot.

Kewpies beat Bruins’ height

A 6-foot-5 forward in high school basketball is not an entirely uncommon sight. A 6-foot-5 midfielder on a soccer field? That’s rare.

Rushing attack gets hard task

Last week, Nebraska entered its game with Missouri ranked first in the nation in rush defense. It left Columbia ranked ninth after a 41-28 thumping in which the Tigers ran for 277 yards. This week, Kansas holds the title of second best in NCAA Division I at stopping the run, and Missouri fans, certainly, are hoping for results similar to those that occurred against the Cornhuskers.

Bruins advance in districts

The Rock Bridge volleyball team defeated Hannibal 25-21, 25-22 in the first round of the Class 8 District 4 volleyball tournament Monday night at Troy Buchanan High School. The third-seeded Bruins (15-11-3) were led by a trio of players with five kills: seniors Amanda Hanson and Lauren Jacobs, and junior Lindsey McDaniel. Rock Bridge coach Beth Newton said the game had an especially slow place to it.

Marathon victory

The White Sox are bringing the broomsticks out of the team closet. Geoff Blum’s solo home run in the 14th inning lifted Chicago past the Houston Astros 7-5 in Game 3 of the World Series early this morning.

Sidewalks to schools are goal of proposals

As the children file down the stairs and load their backpacks, Chris and Kelly Hayday fix snacks in the kitchen. One child asks for popcorn, but without enough time to fix it, Kelly digs through the cupboards in search of granola bars. Fenway, one of the family dogs, anticipates his owners’ departure and paws and licks the children sitting on the sofa to put their shoes on. The Haydays and their two daughters, Megan and Maddie, are joined each morning by their neighbors and friends Kristian and Paige Rathbun, to whom Fenway offers no less affection.

As execution date nears, inmate claims innocence

Every day when Marlin Gray wakes up, he thinks of his mother, who visited him in prison every other week for 12 years until she died earlier this year. “She fought harder than anybody else in the world to prove my innocence,” he said last week during a phone interview. “I have always known the love of my mom. She was everything to me.”

Task force on postgame chaos named

The pandemonium that broke out after the MU football team defeated Nebraska on Saturday prompted 20 arrests and led to the creation Monday of a task force charged with ensuring that kind of chaos never happens again. The task force, which consists of six members of the athletic department, will focus on security and promoting positive fan behavior at football games, said athletic department spokesman Chad Moller. He said the group will begin its work before the next home game — the last at Memorial Stadium this season — against Baylor on Nov. 12. Most of the changes may not become evident until next year.

25 years of Unity in Columbia

It felt like coming home. That is how Nancy Lysen-Kirtley described coming to the Unity church. That is why she and five others started a study group 25 years ago that would eventually grow into the Unity Center of Columbia.

Commissioner Elkin runs for Mo. House

Boone County Commissioner Skip Elkin will announce this morning his candidacy for the 21st District Missouri House seat in the 2006 election. He will be declaring his candidacy at Lange Middle School at 9:30 a.m., Lakeview Bend Assisted Living at 1 p.m. in Mexico, Mo., and Hallsville Middle School at 4:30 p.m., said Scott Cristal, Boone County Democratic Central Committee secretary.

Online drug plan help offered

Jefferson City — Medicare officials have designed a handful of online tools to allow people to search for and compare the first-ever prescription drug plans under the federal insurance program. But despite a promised mid-October unveiling, some are still incomplete. In less than a month, more than 800,000 elderly and disabled Missourians will have the option to enroll in a prescription drug plan under the federal health insurance program. Many are eager to choose a plan, but the decision means wading through a slew of information and waiting for more.

Little actors take tips on big performance

On any other occasion, a kiss on the cheek is huge for seventh-graders, especially in front of their peers. However, a little experience has taught Andy Atkins, a seventh-grader at Smithton Middle School, to see the gesture more professionally. In Andy’s view, a kiss is a mere “scientific” gesture or another “basic term of endearment.” And it is something he is willing to allow for the sake of acting.

Water park will celebrate chamber’s centennial

The Columbia Chamber of Commerce has pledged to donate $50,000 toward the development of a water playground and fountain for Flat Branch Park. The structure will be between Providence Road and Fourth Street, just south of Locust Street. It is part of the final phase of the park’s development and has been in the works for nearly three years.

Grant supports evacuee jobs

JEFFERSON CITY — A state lawmaker wants a $400,000 federal grant intended to provide job assistance to an estimated 15,000 hurricane evacuees in Missouri to include more than four employment advisors. “Four counselors for the whole state borders on the ridiculous, but if that is what we got, we have to make the best use of it,” said Senate Appropriations committee member and Minority Caucus Chair Pat Dougherty, D-St. Louis. “The state needs to be arguing for more. I think that is quite obvious.”