One man hospitalized in collision

Two cars collided on Forum Boulevard at about 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, closing traffic in both directions for 40 minutes. Jeffrey Oflynn was injured in the crash and taken to University Hospital. His condition was unknown Wednesday night, but he appeared to have suffered moderate injuries, Columbia police officer Alan Hulett said. Stephen Reichlin, the other driver, was not injured.

Driving southbound on Forum, Oflynn veered his black Ford Escort into the northbound lane, colliding head-on with Reichlin’s silver Dodge Dakota pickup.

New standardized test gives more options

As if choosing schools, writing essays, signing checks and getting recommendations isn’t enough, the high school graduating class of 2006 has another worry to consider when preparing for college: taking anywhere from one to three standardized tests just to compete.

In the spring of 2005, the College Board will debut a new, longer SAT test. This leaves many juniors in a quandary as to which test to take — the old SAT, the new SAT or the ACT. While the majority of colleges require only one test, providing scores from both tests can give students a competitive edge. Taking both tests also creates options for students who have not yet determined where they want to attend college.

MU’s policy on meningitis vaccine allows for waiver

MU sophomore Meghan Lahey got her $70 meningococcal vaccine Tuesday afternoon under the impression that failing to comply with a new vaccine policy would prevent her from registering for the winter 2005 semester.

“I don’t like the policy,” Lahey said. “I felt like I was forced to get the vaccine.”

New road director to be announced

JEFFERSON CITY — Former New Mexico transportation secretary Pete Rahn is expected to be named today as Missouri’s new transportation director, The Associated Press has learned.

Rahn’s selection was confirmed Wednesday by two Missouri state officials as well as a former colleague of Rahn’s in the New Mexico Department of Transportation, all of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity.

‘She misses the man she married’

Near the end, when the disease tightened its grip and transformed the man into a shell of his former self, Jim Leslie had become a stranger in his own life.

He had begun exhibiting signs of dementia in the late 1990s, and his condition worsened during the next few years. He was often irrational and belligerent, and in a later stage he crossed the line into violence. He forgot the identity of those closest to him, including his two granddaughters.

Auctioning the Alley

Steve Spaur remembers multiple instances when he caught drunken college students attempting to steal the bowling ball and pin signs off the side of Oakland Plaza Lanes.

Those pranksters will finally have the opportunity to get those signs by legal means today. The signs will be part of an auction at the bowling alley at 2116 Vandiver Drive.

Changes to roads up for debate

Proposals for extending Scott Boulevard, Fairview Road and other major roads in central Columbia will be considered at a public hearing Thursday.

The hearing will take place during the quarterly meeting of the coordinating committee of the Columbia Area Transportation Study Organization, a federally mandated group that coordinates long-term transportation planning for the city and Boone County.

SBC donating $1 million to MU

MU students interested in computer science will soon have a third option for a degree program. SBC Communications announced Tuesday it will give $1 million to MU’s College of Engineering for a new information technology studies program.

The gift will cover the cost of computers and faculty and will be paid over the next five years.

Grant would bolster youth group

Columbia Builds Youth expects to receive a $40,000 grant through the Columbia City Council that would help it continue its efforts to re-engage teenagers and young adults in the community.

Columbia Builds Youth teaches construction skills to economically disadvantaged individuals while helping them earn general equivalency diplomas as well as find jobs.

A tasty way to benefit others

When it comes to pub grub, nothing satisfies quite like a chicken wing. Whether baked or fried, most folks like them crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. Columbia has its fair share of wing joints, and tonight one lucky restaurant will be crowned king of the wing.

The 16th annual Easter Seals Wing Ding will take place tonight at American Legion Post 202. Wing lovers can chow down for charity as area restaurants vie for the coveted title of tastiest wing in Columbia. Local luminaries will assist the public in judging wings in four separate categories: best BBQ wing, meatiest wing, best overall taste and a people’s choice decided by all in attendance. Adam Cox, a 5-year-old student enrolled at Easter Seals Child Development Center, will also take part in the judging.

Pets find new home on campus

Stephens College sophomore Alexandra Geisler scheduled her classes this semester not around a job but around Abbey Road, a Jack Russell terrier who needs walking at least twice a day.

For the first time, students at Stephens — where classes start today — may have pets other than fish in their residence hall rooms.

Fall events aim to boost interest in downtown

The leaves won’t be the only things dancing in Flat Branch Park this fall.

The Columbia Parks and Recreation Department and the Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau announced Tuesday a fall entertainment lineup that will include live music, outdoor cinema and a midnight bike ride.

Iraqi canine gets new home

Like any dog, Bunker has chewed her way through many pairs of shoes, but she’s anything but your typical household pet.

“When we were at a work site and Bunker started barking, we knew that Iraqis were in the area,” said Lucas Green, 23, a Columbia resident and a member of the Missouri National Guard’s 203rd Engineer Battalion. “She was our early detection system.”

First-day adventures

When MU junior Dave Gasparovic showed up at the Student Recreation Center for his shift at 10 a.m. Monday, the power was down. Employees abandoned their jobs answering phones or monitoring weight room activity to stand at the door and turn away students.

“We’ve been relegated to bouncers,” Gasparovic said, “although most people have been pretty understanding.”

Gloom out of place on first day of school

Whipping rain and dark clouds failed to stop thousands of Columbia children from attending the first day of school Monday.

While official numbers won’t be available until late next month, unofficial statistics from the Columbia Public Schools show that 16,404 children attended school the first day, which is 193 more than last year.

Vets are fourth of Columbia homeless

Tony Mooneyham said he went to hell and came back to a place where no one wanted anything to do with him.

He served as an infantryman in the Vietnam War from 1967 to 1970.

Hypertension afflicts 1 in 3 Americans

DALLAS — As Americans get older and fatter, the number of adults with high blood pressure has climbed to almost one in three over the past decade, putting more people at risk of a stroke, heart attack or kidney failure, government researchers said Monday.

A little more than a decade ago, the number was closer to one in four. And two decades ago, it was falling. But thenthe obesity surge hit in the late ’80s.

Tolerance, coffee and rock ‘n’ roll at Woodcrest

The lights go dim. The curtains part. The drummer beats three times to signal the start of the show, and the crowd is on its feet.

This isn’t a rock show. This is Woodcrest Chapel, and theatrical performances are the norm here. They are also its formula for growth.

MU enrollment reaches historic high

MU announced the largest first-day enrollment in its history Monday with 27,088 students. That’s a 1.1 percent increase in the student body from last year. This includes a 2.7 percent increase in the number of new minority students on campus.

This growth — which officials must base on voluntary reporting by students — brings the total reported minority enrollment to 530.

College commons comes alive

When classes started Monday at Columbia College, everyone seemed energized about something, but the hub of activity was inside the new commons area.

“I’m excited to see how this building is going to change the culture of our campus,” said Faye Burchard, dean of Campus Life. “The students will have more interaction between themselves and with the faculty.”