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6 Wet And Wild Things To Do In Kansas City This Labor Day Weekend

The looming wonders of weekend diversions can lure this enthusiastic messenger away from mere explication to attempt airy and alliterative turns of phrase in pursuit of apprising the public as appealingly as possible. In other words: I can get carried away with this stuff, especially when it comes to a three-day weekend. But exaggerate? That’s never the plan. Take this weekend’s arguably provocative promise of “wet and wild” things to do – really? Without a doubt. Pretty much. Mostly. Oh,...
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Central Standard

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Why Walt Disney Held Tiny Marceline, Missouri Close To His Heart

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Cody Newill / KCUR

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Wikimedia Commons / California Department Of Corrections

If you thought Texas held the title of death penalty capital, you’d be right — kind of.

Though Texas has carried out more executions than any other state, Missouri now has the highest death penalty rate per capita.

Joe Ledford / POOL/Kansas City Star

A Johnson County jury will be back Tuesday to decide if convicted killer Frazier Glenn Cross Jr. will be sentenced to death for shooting three people last year.

Rather than risk having to sequester the jury over the holiday weekend, Judge Thomas Kelly Ryan dismissed them a little before 10 a.m. Friday, telling them to come back fresh next week.

Both prosecutors and Cross, who is representing himself, agreed it would be best to wait to send the case to the jury.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas Public Radio

If President Obama closes the Guantanamo Bay detention center in Cuba, the suspected terrorists who are housed there might be transferred to the military prison at Fort Leavenworth. Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has spoken out against that idea. Thursday, he brought that message to Leavenworth and heard from the people who would be most directly affected: local residents.

Julie Denesha / KCUR

T’khara Jones and her younger sister KhaTera Jones wanted to take dance lessons.

Their older sister won gymnastics and dance trophies, and they had an aunt whose dancing mesmerized them.

"I just thought, 'Wow that looks so much fun, it just looks beautiful," says T'khara. "I always wanted to do it."

Same went for KhaTera, a year behind her in school.

"One of my friends took dance classes and I thought it was really cool. When I first started wanting to take dance classes, it was maybe fourth or fifth grade."

Digital Ally

A Lenexa-based company that makes body cameras for law enforcement says sales “quadrupled” last year after unrest in Ferguson, Missouri.

Digital Ally is working with more than 1,000 agencies across the country, including Ferguson, says Heath Bideau, in charge of international sales and marketing for the company.

“I really don’t think anybody could have expected it to increase as quickly and dramatically as it did,” Bideau says.

Sam Zeff / KCUR

It’s the kind of story that’s a little hard to believe until you visit the neighborhood.

Just after 8:00 a.m., a school bus stops on North Freemont Avenue and kids pile on.

They have their backpacks, lunches and homework. It all seems normal.

Except they only live a few blocks from the school and aren't allowed to walk.

It would take Jessica Andrews’ four kids about five minutes to walk to Maplewood Elementary School in the Northland. “We’re really, really close. Why aren't they walking, it’s so close? There’s no sidewalks. It’s not safe for them to walk."

Bigstock

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced Wednesday that it had renewed its navigator grants with two Kansas programs: Ascension Health and the Kansas Association for the Medically Underserved (KAMU).

Bigstock

Erica Anderson, a health promotion specialist for the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department, likes to tell a story about a woman who came to one of her workshops eager to talk about electronic cigarettes.

The woman, who was pregnant, said she was in a restaurant when a man at the table next to her started puffing on an e-cigarette, which delivers nicotine to users in a vapor. As the white cloud of vapor wafted over to her, she got up and asked the restaurant owner to tell the man to stop.

Joe Ledford / POOL/Kansas City Star

A judge told convicted Jewish Community Center shooter Frazier Glenn Cross Jr. Thursday he could not call two defense attorneys as witnesses during the penalty phase of his trial.

Cross, who is representing himself, is trying to convince the jury he deserves life in prison for the murders of Reat Underwood, William Corporon and Terri LaManno in April 2014. Cross had asked Ron Wurtz and Val Wachtel, two Kansas attorneys with experience litigating death penalty cases, to testify on his behalf.

An advisory committee charged with helping state officials design a system for regulating the use of prescription mental health drugs for Medicaid patients met for the first time Tuesday.

“This is going to be an evolving process,” said Dr. Vishal Adma, a committee member and president of the Kansas Psychiatric Society.

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