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Modest start at MU led to newspaper fortune

The late Donald W. Reynolds — the man behind a $31 million gift announced Monday to build a journalism institute at MU — was born in Texas, raised in Oklahoma and schooled in Missouri.

Until his graduation from MU’s School of Journalism in 1927, Reynolds paid for his education by working summers at a meat-packing plant in Oklahoma. In 1940, he bought three newspapers, creating the Donrey Media Group. By the time he died in 1993, Reynolds owned more than 50 newspapers, including the largest of them, the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

More tax revenue, more criticism

JEFFERSON CITY — Another month of unexpectedly high revenue collections has led to another round of Republican criticism that Gov. Bob Holden should release education withholdings.

House Budget Committee Chairman Carl Bearden, R-St. Charles, said he expects the governor won’t release the money until May, if at all, to allow passage of local tax levies for education planned for April ballots. Voters are less likely to approve a tax increase after additional funds have just been released, Bearden said.

Mobile home dwellers seek fair warning

JEFFERSON CITY — Dozens of mobile home residents came to Missouri’s Statehouse on Monday to tell legislators that mobile homes aren’t so mobile.

The residents are promoting legislation to give more rights to residents of mobile home parks.

Massive gift for MU

With $31 million, the Missouri School of Journalism will create a hub where citizens, journalists and educators can shape the future of media, MU leaders and others said Monday.

The gift, announced at an afternoon press conference, will be used to establish the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute — a move that will not only bring cutting-edge media technology to campus but also reshape a portion of Francis Quadrangle, MU’s historic heart.

Bronze inspiration

An artist can capture aspects of ordinary events and bring them to the surface for others to see. For local artist Don Bartlett, one of his last sculptures was inspired by the visual impact of a single photograph.

Bertrice Bartlett said her late husband’s bronze sculpture of four basketball players reaching for the ball was “inspired by the dynamic but fluid forms created during their action.” The work, simply titled “Basketball Players,” was created by Don Bartlett in 1984, two years before he died of cancer at 58.

Objections to UM bond measure melt

JEFFERSON CITY — The chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee said Monday that the University of Missouri system may well be able to secure its prized construction money.

Sen. John Russell, R-Lebanon, had been one of the $190.4 million bond’s most vocal critics.

Bush visits Springfield auto plant

President George Bush’s drive to manufacture another win in Missouri began in a warehouse in Springfield this year.

Bush defended his economic polices Monday, speaking to about 600 supporters and workers of SRC Automotive Inc. at an economic forum held at the plant. Five local workers and business owners joined Bush on stage, explaining how they benefited from tax cuts.

Ramada Inn investigated after party

After a disturbance Saturday night that led to the arrest of eight people, Columbia police and fire officials will meet today to determine if a local hotel violated city fire codes during a private party.

Fire Battalion Chief Steven Sapp said the two departments are investigating whether the Ramada Inn Conference Center, 1100 Vandiver Drive, filled its banquet room with more people than legally permitted during a style and fashion show thrown by MU’s Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.

Farm fresh

It’s Saturday afternoon, and Sam the Turkey is proudly strutting around the gravel parking lot of Sho-Me Farms Market, greeting customers with a blue and red wattled smile and a puff of his feathers.

“(My husband) says he’s our mascot,” store owner Marylou Mayse said as she gently guided him out from behind a red truck so a customer could leave.

World Harvest introduces an array of international foods

There’s a new hotspot in town for Columbians with a taste for eclectic foods and international flavor.

Nestled behind Gerbes supermarket on Nifong Boulevard is a new specialty foods store, World Harvest International and Gourmet Foods.

Columbia school board focuses on dilemma of raising salaries

Raising salaries to keep teacher morale high at the Columbia Public School District would come at the price of losing teachers.

Hope, wariness greet sale of Lakewood apartments

Barbara Dolezal could use a new carpet. Fuzzy magenta bathmats cover the little bit of colorless industrial carpet in her living room. She hopes an elongated bookcase, stuffed with books and knickknacks, will distract guests’ eyes from the hallway’s torn carpet. That hole in the floor has been there as long as she has, about four years, but previous managers didn’t fulfill promises to repair it.

For the past year, however, Dolezal has been happy in her handicapped-accessible home at Lakewood Apartments. She said the new manager, after years of negligent predecessors, is getting things done.

Fairview students win statewide in Quiz Bowl

Imagine the scene: The question appears on the screen. The contestants quickly read it and begin yelling what they think the answer may be. Somehow, one answer must be found within the chaos, and that answer must be found fast.

For eight fifth-graders at Fairview Elementary, this was a reality. And they’re good at it.

Flea markets face eBay challenge

With the arrival of online auction sites, shopping for or selling antiques and collectibles has gone from being a fun hobby to a lucrative pastime that can sometimes pay for itself.

Lake campus adds building

The Columbia College campus at Lake of the Ozarks will begin construction on a $2.4 million building as early as June.

The new building will include classrooms, a nursing center and lab, two computer labs, a student study lab, a science lab, student commons, a vending area and a faculty lounge, the school said in a news release.

Black history to be celebrated at MU

The Gaines/Oldham Black Culture Center and the Black Studies Department will sponsor several events at or near MU to celebrate Black History Month.

“We want to celebrate some of the successes of black people in America, as well as in Africa,” said MU black studies professor Robert Williams, a member of the Black History Month Committee.

Cafe to reopen after renovation

Columbia coffee drinkers who have gone without a cup of coffee from Osama since the fall won’t have to wait much longer. The local business owner plans to reopen his North Ninth Street location around Feb. 21.

Osama Yanis, who used to own and run two Coffee Zone locations on Ninth Street, sold his southern shop in October and closed the northern venue for extensive renovations in November.

A virtuoso of violins

When Thomas Verdot was 15 years old, he took his violin bow to a local repairman to get it re-haired. When it came back in poor condition, he thought, “I can do a better job than that.”

Following that experience, Verdot decided to be the maker of the musical instruments and not just the musician playing the instruments.

Visions of the past

If you are looking for photographs of family members in the Boone Country area from about 1910 to 1936, the Boone County Historical Society has a new place to find them.

The historical society has placed 785 glass-plate negatives from this time period on the World Wide Web. These glass-plate negatives are from the Westhoff collection, the first major donation of photographs to the Walters-Boone County Historical Museum.

Searching for common ground

I’m always impressed with how fast people lose their affectations the minute the door slams shut behind them as they wait outside a hospital’s emergency room. Like animals caught in a headlight, all their defenses suddenly appear to be stripped away. Behind every facade stands an emotionally naked person, vulnerable to whatever news awaits them beyond that door. Race, sex, age or financial status hardly matter when we are all reduced to a quivering mass of unadulterated fear and anxiety.

If you have been there, done that, then you know what I mean. If you haven’t, you are one of the lucky people. I was there with a friend last week, waiting with her for word about her sick child. As it turned out, he was seriously ill, and there will be days of waiting before the family will know the outcome.

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