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Schools may face No Child penalty

Five of Columbia’s 19 elementary schools — Blue Ridge, Derby Ridge, Eugene Field, Parkade and West Boulevard — face sanctions under the federal No Child Left Behind Act if new state test scores expected out this week do not show improvement from 2003.

Under the act, any school that does not meet yearly state testing goals for two consecutive years in the same subject must offer parents the option of transferring their children to better-performing schools. This will be the first year that school transfers could be required under the act in Missouri.

Number of pool-goers takes a dip

It was a short day at Pirates’ Landing for the Sillyman family on Monday.

“We’re getting ready to go; the kids were freezing in the water,” Mindy Sillyman said as she and her husband, Bryce, corralled their two kids toward the exit.

Walks of life meet at State Fair

SEDALIA — Bobo doesn’t like you. He thinks you have big ears, bad hair and a bubble butt. Even worse, he’ll tell you right to your face.

Name-calling is all part of a day’s work for Bobo the Insult Clown, whose dunk tank is one of the dozens of Midway attractions at the Missouri State Fair.

Band carries on a bluegrass tradition

SEDALIA — In the Women’s Building at the Missouri State Fair, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources displays maps and models that show the location of state parks and reflect the quality of the state’s air and water. Outside, on the front porch, five musicians demonstrate another Missouri natural resource: bluegrass music.

Under a small tent, listeners sit on benches facing a wide porch and tall white columns. The band, in dark pants and light-blue shirts, plays traditional bluegrass and takes requests from the audience while fairgoers peruse attractions in the building.

Power lifting not for the weak of arm

SEDALIA — Demetrius Davis positions his back on the bench and closes his hands around the bar. His spotter lifts the weight from the rack and centers it over Davis’ shoulders. The crowd gasps as he goes through the motions of bench-pressing 450 pounds: lower, press, pause, rack.

Davis, 27, was one of nearly 35 bench-press competitors at the Missouri State Fair on Sunday. He began weightlifting in high school in Huntsville. Now a resident of Columbia, Davis has been competing in power-lifting events for three years.

Columbia College reveals new commons

With its tall glass windows and metal accents, the Atkins-Holman Student Commons at Columbia College looks more like a trendy shopping center than an academic building. But the new structure is about more than form. It brings together several offices that had previously been scattered across the college.

“It’s a lot easier than having to walk all the way to the other end of campus,” sophomore Rachell Ramirez said while shopping for textbooks.

City CVB requests $248,323

The City Council kicked off its annual budget review with the first of three public hearings Monday night.

Recommendations were heard regarding community services, public support for the arts and federal grant money earmarked for community improvement projects.

Up close and personal

When the gates of Memorial Stadium opened Sunday, a mass of black and gold engulfed the turf of Faurot Field. Excited fans bypassed the stadium stairs and raced down the grassy hillside above the end zone to get a closer look at the MU Tigers.

Tiger fans gathered Sunday afternoon to meet their favorite players at MU’s second annual Fan Day. Coach Gary Pinkel and his players signed autographs and posed for pictures with fans who anxiously waited in lines.

City touts proposals to save energy

As Columbia utility customers brace for monthly water and light bills that probably will rise by an estimated average of $6 this fall, city administrators are proposing new and expanded energy conservation measures intended to help consumers — and the city — save money.

“With the cost of power going up, it becomes more advantageous and more economical to conserve,” said Jay Hasheider, energy services supervisor for the city. “We need to get people to conserve, especially during those peak hours.”

Housing market good despite rates

The Federal Reserve Board raised interest rates Tuesday by a quarter percentage point, but low mortgage rates are holding steady, and the housing market is still booming.

Last year, mortgage rates dipped below 6 percent for the first time in national history. According to Freddie Mac mortgage market surveys, the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage in 2003 was 5.83. So far in 2004, the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 5.89.

Puerto Rico routs U.S. in hoops

ATHENS, Greece — In an upset as historic as it was inevitable, Tim Duncan, Allen Iverson and the rest of the U.S. basketball team lost 92-73 to Puerto Rico on Sunday, only the third Olympic loss ever for America and its first since adding pros.

It was by far the most lopsided defeat for a U.S. men’s team.

Correction

The life story for Dr. Jon Meese listed an incorrect date for the services. Services will be at 2 p.m. Saturday.

Armed-robbery suspect arrested

Boone County Sheriff’s Deputies have arrested a man in connection with a Sunday afternoon robbery at a Columbia convenience store. Sheriff’s deputies arrested John J. Day of Boonville at 2:43 p.m. Sunday in connection with a robbery that occurred about 45 minutes earlier at Break Time, 2402 N. Paris Road.

According to a release issued by Columbia Police Sgt. Kenneth Smith, Columbia police responded to a reported robbery at the store around 2 p.m. Police said the suspect, armed with an assault rifle, robbed the store and fled in a maroon Chevrolet Lumina van.

Police investigating attempted robbery

Columbia police officers responded to a report of an attempted robbery at about 10:30 p.m. Saturday in the 2700 block of Quail Drive.

According to a release issued by Columbia Police Sgt. Lloyd Simons, the suspect implied he had a weapon and demanded the victim’s wallet. Police said the victim, a 53-year-old Columbia resident, tried to distract his attacker but was hit in the face. The victim, police said, then fled to his residence, and the suspect walked off to the north without any of the victim’s property.

Historical building evolves

Almost 100 years ago, the Kress Co. opened what was known as a “Five and Ten Cent” store in downtown Columbia and, for decades, traded in everything from clothing to candy.

On Friday — weeks away from its latest incarnation as a dueling piano bar - the Kress building went before the Missouri Advisory Council of Historic Preservation in a bid for placement on the National Register of Historic Places.

Thousands homeless after hurricane

PUNTA GORDA, Fla. — Rescuers rummaged through a chaotic landscape of pulverized homes and twisted metal Saturday, racing to tally Hurricane Charley’s “significant loss of life” and help thousands left homeless by its vicious winds and rain. At least 13 people were confirmed dead.

As a weakened Charley churned into the Carolinas and was downgraded to a tropical storm, newly sunny skies revealed its destruction in Florida, where emergency officials pronounced it the worst to wallop the state since Hurricane Andrew tore through in 1992. Twenty-six deaths were directly linked to Andrew, which caused $19.9 billion in damage.

Surviving her son's death

BOLYE COUNTY, Ky. — For the 800 residents of Perryville, Ky., life goes on.

The stoplight on Highway 68 — one of two in town — still switches from red to green to yellow and back to red again.

Reliving a journey

Derek Biddle was 11 when he met a mysterious Cherokee woman in his hometown of Rocheport. It was the summer of 1998, and the American Indian was accompanying Glen Bishop, the founder of the Lewis and Clark Discovery Expedition, while he recruited men for the upcoming expedition to mark the bicentennial of the original explorers’ trip up the Missouri River.

“I spent the entire day with her,” Biddle said. “Before I left, she gave me a white mink skin and said that she would see me on the 2004 trail of Lewis and Clark.”

City seeks accessible sidewalks

An increase of more than $325,000 for the development of sidewalks and pedways, particularly downtown and in areas of the First Ward, is part of City Manager Ray Beck’s proposed budget for fiscal 2005.

Bringing the city into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act is a top priority, said John Glascock, chief engineer for the Public Works Department. Even downtown is still missing wheelchair cuts and ramps in some places, he said, adding, however, that the city always has “money in the budget for downtown and the First Ward: They’re the oldest parts of town.”

Attracting new hope

For Danielle Sipi of Jefferson City, life has been all about a yellow ribbon for the past six months.

“We never thought it would be that big,” Sipi said. “It’s taking over our lives.”

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