A school funding lawsuit by Shawnee Mission District parents survived a dismissal attempt. Kansas City bought four streetcars. And former Congressman Ike Skelton died. KCUR's Steve Bell recaps those and other top stories of the week on the KCUR Saturday News Review.
By unanimous vote, the Kansas City Council Thursday condemned a planned rally by the National Socialist Movement, a neo-Nazi group. The group says they will gather to protest immigration reform November 9 in Kansas City, Mo.
Citing data from the Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights and the Southern Poverty Law Center, the city’s resolution encouraged citizens to challenge the segregationist beliefs of the organization.
Councilman John Sharp said people "should not physically challenge" protestors but they shouldn't ignore them, either.
Discovery of a fake radiator packed with $9 million worth of methamphetamine along Interstate 29 has led to a guilty plea from the man alleged to be a major distributor of the drug in the Kansas City area.
U.S. District Judge Brian Wimes ordered Porfirio Almeida-Perez and 31 co-defendants to pay a $9 million judgment.
It represents proceeds from 272 kilos of meth, based on a modest street price of $16,000 a pound.
The end of October brings an end to a boost in the amount of federal food assistance that's been helping to feed 316,000 Kansans for the past four years. The extra benefits were part of the stimulus bill Congress passed in 2009 to help people recover from the recession.
Barb LaClair, who studies hunger issues at the non-profit Kansas Health Institute, says caseloads suggest low-income Kansans still aren’t seeing a recovery. She says they’re going to have no choice but to rely even more on food banks and food pantries—which are already overextended.
In director Steve McQueen’s thematically brutal yet beautifully composed film 12 Years a Slave, Chiwetel Ejiofor gives an astonishing performance as Solomon Northup, a black musician whose trusting nature leads to the ultimate betrayal when he goes from a free man to a slave. That both director and actor are British and black isn’t an anomaly but rather an obtuse argument that perhaps American filmmakers are too close to the story of slavery in this country to do it justice.
The Kansas City councilman who has steered the city's streetcar project from its start says Thursday was probably the most significant mile post in the process. The city is ready to sign the contract for four streetcars.
Councilman Russ Johnson says the council's approval of the $17.9 million contract was the true “point of no return,” the day that the plan changed from a dream to a project underway.
The Halloween season is a time when, for at least a night or two, you can become something – or someone – else. An exhibition at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art called Dressed Up explores the "theater of the self," and the role of nature, culture, reality and perception.
Creating a new self-image
"Let’s be really ornery in the museum," encourages librarian Meghann Henry. "And on the count of three, you're going to count shout ‘Good morning!’ One, two three, 'Good morning!' Pretty good, alright."
Each year the haunted houses in the West Bottoms open for the season during the months of September and October. Thousands of people flock to these enormous haunted attractions, which are some of the oldest and most successful haunted houses in the country.
But the haunted houses have brought more to the city than just terror. They have played a major role in the revitalization of the area. But as development takes off in the West Bottoms, some wonder whether seasonal entertainment like the haunted houses should be part of the area's future.
Do the ghosts of Jesse James, Cole Younger, and Annie Chambers still haunt us? What about the apparitions of Carrie Nation and Tom Pendergast?
These folks all have one thing in common — they're all buried right here in Kansas City. So, for a brief moment, let's resurrect these long-slumbering souls and explore the fascinating lives of some of Kansas City's famous dead:
Earlier this month zombies walked the streets of Kansas City for the annual Kansas City Zombie Walk, a charity event that collects food for the hungry and homeless. But one zombie at the event stood out from the others - the Zombie Queen.
The Zombie Queen is played by Hyde Park resident and Zombie Walk president, Peige Turner. For the event Turner is in full zombie garb, and she walks on stilts, grabbing the attention of kids and adults alike.
The important business of becoming the Zombie Queen
The Phantom of the Opera, a 1925 silent film, tells the story of an organist who lurks beneath an opera house. This Halloween night, organist Aaron David Miller will be in plain sight at the Kauffman Center, when he provides the soundtrack for a screening of this film.
Almost every year around this time in Kansas City, a musical phenomenon rises up at area bars. A mysterious band called the Haunted Creepys tends to perform around Halloween, and whenever Friday the 13th rolls around.
The Creepys wear colorful robes and hoods with black netting covering their faces, and they claim to be a 400-year-old band of undead musicians from Transylvania who play original numbers such as Phantom of the Pipeline, Skiffle Haunt and Hairy Tomato.
United Airlines and Air Canada were supposed to move Wednesday night from Terminal A to Terminal C at Kansas City International Airport, but those plans got delayed.
KCI spokesman Joe McBride says technical issues were to blame.
“As they were getting into the eleventh hour of the move, the computer technology was not all coming on line,” said McBride. “So it looked like the airline was not going to have the ability to check people in be it at the ticket counter or the kiosk.”
McBride says he expects the terminal change will take place early next week.
Planning a funeral can be one of the most personal and vulnerable times for any family, but that doesn’t stop funeral homes from trying to up-sell grieving friends and family on gold rimmed caskets and other additional merchandise.
On Thursday's Up to Date, we talk with Josh Slocum, executive director of Funeral Consumers Alliance, who believes consumers are getting stiffed when it comes to laying themselves or loved ones to rest. We also discuss why green burial is making a comeback.
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art has commissioned a new work by architect and artist Maya Lin, who's probably best known as the designer of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Lin’s sculpture, Silver Missouri, inspired by the Missouri River, is crafted from recycled silver, and it’s one in a series of works exploring water conservation. It will be installed in the Bloch Building on November 15.
Millennials, those born between 1980 and 2000, are increasing their economic presence and power. Companies are investing in research to understand this group, which makes up 25 percent of the U.S. population. There might be a lot we still don't know about this significant segment of society, but according to our experts, here's what we do know:
Why do governments rely on the sales tax for big projects, like the medical research proposal in Jackson County?
And how fat can the sales tax get before shoppers stop buying?
In the second half of Tuesday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with two experts about sales taxes, what makes up the total sales tax you see on a receipt, and why governments have turned to sales taxes for raising funds when revenue is down.
Binh Hua (left) and My Nguyen, both 18, work in the Garden City Community College chemistry lab. The two best friends graduated from high school in three years and after community college, plan to go on to universities.
Credit Abbie Fentress Swanson / Harvest Public Media
Of the 232 students who graduated from McDonald County High School in Anderson, Mo., last year, 154 of them reported they would be attending college.
Credit Harvest Public Media
Don Stull, a University of Kansas anthropologist, stands outside the Tyson beef plant on the outskirts of Garden City, Kan. Stull has studied Garden City and other meatpacking towns for 30 years and is co-author of the book “Slaughterhouse Blues.”
An interim Missouri House committee has resumed examining the state’s Medicaid system this week. Lawmakers spent part of Tuesday taking a closer look at how some other states with GOP-led legislatures have expanded Medicaid
Committee member Chris Molendorp was the only House Republican to support Medicaid expansion during this year’s legislative session. He says Missouri should consider adopting Florida’s practice of using Medicaid to cover so-called wrap-around services, such as providing transportation for kidney dialysis patients.
In the Netflix series, House of Cards, actor Nathan Darrow, a native of Kansas City, plays Edward Meechum. It's an understated role, but he's the keeper of secrets as the bodyguard and driver for ruthless Congressman Francis "Frank" Underwood, played by Kevin Spacey.
A proposed half-cent sales tax would raise $800 million over the next 20 years to be divided among Children’s Mercy Hospital, St. Luke’s Hospital and the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine.
On November 5, Jackson County voters will decide whether to fund a translational medicine institute. A proposed half-cent sales tax would raise $800 million over the next 20 years to be divided among Children’s Mercy Hospital, St. Luke’s Hospital and the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine.
Ten percent of the $800 million and 20 percent of profits the program generates would fund local public health initiatives.
Boulevard Brewery grew from humble beginnings to be ranked 12th in the nation for craft beer companies. The Kansas City favorite announced October 17 that it had been sold to a 142-year old Belgian company called Duvel Moortgat Brewery.
When Boulevard Brewery founder John McDonald started his micro-brewery 24 years ago, he wasn't even thinking of an exit plan. His original business plan included 7,000 barrels per year and seven employees. He now produces 190,000 barrels and has 125 employees.
Sister Janice Thome’s office is a 2003 brown Ford Focus with a backseat piled high with paperwork and a prayer book.
Thome puts 125,000 miles a year on this car, picking up boxes from the food pantry, finding a mattress for a newcomer, delivering a sick soul to a doctor’s appointment. All the while, she fields emergency calls on her flip phone, responding to her mission to serve the poor of Garden City, out on the plains of southwest Kansas.
This day, Thome is teaching her teen parenting class at the alternative high school.