Doctor/state representative announces bid for state lieutenand governor post

Affordable health care, protections for senior citizens and true support for veterans are among the priorities that State Rep. Sam Page, D-Creve Coeur, cited in declaring today that he will run for Missouri lieutenant governor.

School board discusses using reserve funds to pay for 70 new positions, raises

It was lonely inside the administration building this morning, unless you happened to be a member of the school board itself. Despite the growth of Columbia’s school system as reflected by the 2007-08 proposed budget, only one parent attended Columbia School Board’s 7:30 a.m. budget proposal meeting.

Gardeners in a tizzy over season’s irregular weather patterns

The old saying “nipped in the bud” has rarely seemed more real than what we experienced this spring when two weeks of unusual heat for the season were followed by two weeks of intense cold. The four week period marked the greatest short-term weather variance in our area over the past 118 years — as I have been repeatedly told by gardener upon gardener. Their tone is always one of resignation rather than defeat as they speak their litany of losses.

Young artist explores new avenue — Shoes

One young artist’s paintings appear on a different type of canvas — slip-on shoes. Anna Fleischer painted on her first two pairs of canvas shoes two years ago during her senior year of high school. After realizing that she and her best friend had purchased an identical pair of shoes, the then 16-year-old from Valencia, Calif., decided she needed to make the shoes appear different.

An Olympic salute

Alternate land uses sought

Despite the nearly 30 commercial uses listed in his statement of intent, and the expectations of city and council officials, Ron Netemeyer says he will continue to operate his mobile home parks even if the City Council agrees to annex and rezone them.

Suspect charged in Break Time shooting

Columbia police were searching for a man Monday afternoon after they said he shot a 19-year-old Columbia man in the back of the head early Saturday morning.

Development to preserve natural beauty

Delta Roads Development LLC got the go-ahead from the Columbia City Council in a unanimous vote last night to proceed with plans for a 10.9-acre, multi-family housing development west of Rock Quarry Road.

Mo. executions ruled not cruel or unusual

A federal appeals court on Monday opened the way for Missouri to renew execution of condemned inmates, ruling the state’s three-drug method of execution is not unconstitutionally cruel and unusual punishment.

Twilight Festival shuffles locations

The 17th year of Columbia’s Twilight Festival begins Thursday with some significant changes — including the relocation of several key activities — that organizers hope will help boost safety for patrons and the interests of downtown businesses.

Charity funds thief gets three years

A woman who told her friends she had cancer and then took money from a fund they established to help her get treatment was sentenced Monday to three years in jail but will not have to serve it until she’s paid the money back.

Travelers left waiting for passports

This year the U.S. State Department is on track to issue 17 million passports. Joan Sexton will finally get hers by Federal Express today, just a few hours before she’s scheduled to fly to Europe.

Web site lets students thank MU professors

A new Web site called Thankaprof gives students an opportunity to heap praise on their favorite teachers and write positive comments, which are sent to their professors. The site has gotten more than 100 responses so far, according to Andrew White, MU’s director of educational technology, who oversees the site at

The young entertainers

Walking into the Missouri Theatre on Monday afternoon was like walking straight into the past, where ragtime reigned supreme and musicians conquered the crowd. Two large pianos pressed against each other on stage, and the lights beamed on a solo artist pounding away at the piano during the “Blind” Boone Ragtime and Early Jazz Festival. The powerful piano player with the patriotic vest and top hat, however, was not the usual performer at the festival, which ends tonight. Instead, 15-year-old Adam Swanson added a new spice for the ordinary salt and pepper festival-goers.

Tibetan monk to speak on Dzogchen meditation

Wangdor Rimpoche, a Tibetan monk who spent 30 years meditating in caves in Northern India, will emerge for a series of appearances in Columbia this week as part of his summer lecture tour across the United States.

Family routines make for admirable children

A friend recently visited relatives in a Southern city, and he was impressed with the way the folks he stayed with clung to their family traditions. He was particularly struck by how the entire family gathered at the breakfast and dinner table, morning and evening, every day for meals and conversation. This was not common practice among his friends.

New UM president should create university system

President Walsworth and members of the Board of Curators:

As you consider who to select as the new UM president, I suggest you consider the primary, if not only, job the new president will have and, accordingly, the primary, if not only, criterion for selection — to create a university system. The UM system exists in name only. Virtually no effort has been expended since the system was created in the early ’60s to create a real system.

Physicist argues vs. existence of God

A retired professor of physics from the University of Hawaii came to Columbia at the invitation of the Show-me Skeptics and the MU Brights to discuss his new book, “God: The Failed Hypothesis.” The thrust of his argument is that the question whether God exists is one that can be answered by applying the scientific method.

Board to discuss school budget

The Columbia School Board will hold two open sessions at 7:30 a.m. and 7 p.m. today to discuss the proposed 2007-08 school budget.