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Health
2:40 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

City Warns Residents About Using Red Garbage Bags

Public works officials in Kansas City, Mo., are warning residents not to leave biohazard bags on their curbs — because the city won't take them.
Credit Wikimedia -- CC

Kansas City’s Public Works Department wants residents to know: If your garbage bags have a biohazard logo on them, the city won’t take your trash.

Some residents have recently bought red biohazard trash bags from a door-to-door salesman.

Public Works spokesman Sean Demory says that during the past month, garbage crews have spotted a few hundred of the bio-waste bags mostly on the east side between 47th and 63rd streets.

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Beyond Our Borders
10:25 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Years Ago, Summer Meant (Almost) Everyone Headed To Fairyland Park

A roller coaster at Fairyland Park cost 10 cents a ride.
Courtesy photo Crawford Family Collection- Judy Long

  

From the 1920s through the 1960s, summertime in Kansas City meant a thrilling trip to Fairyland Park.

The 80-acre amusement park in Kansas City, Mo., offered daring rides, an outdoor dance pavilion, a large swimming pool, and later, a drive-in movie theater.

As we move into the summer of 2014, we take a trip back to the heyday of a local summer ritual for many, but not all, Kansas City residents.

Every child's dream

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Government
7:40 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Kansas City Adopts Point System For Development Incentives

Kansas City's development incentives policy becomes more structured under a measure passed by the city council Thursday. The city will adopt a scorecard system to determine which projects get incentives and how large those incentives are.

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Film
6:00 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Film Review: In East Texas, Blood Runs 'Cold In July'

Sam Shepard, Michael C. Hall, and Don Johnson form an unlikely trio seeking vengeance in 'Cold in July.'
Credit courtesy: IFC Films

There's a deliberate seediness to the Texas noir Cold in July that makes it both entertaining and calculating. Directed by Jim Mickle, it stars Michael C. Hall as Richard, an ordinary man around whom extraordinarily violent things happen, all triggered by an act of self-defense that leaves a home intruder dead and his living room splattered with brain matter like a Jackson Pollock.

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Health
6:58 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

Blunt: Death Of Combat Veteran Points To Deficiencies In V.A. Care

U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt (center), R-MO, spoke at a roundtable discussion at Truman Medical Centers' Behavioral Health Services. Joining Blunt at the head table were Charlie Shields (left), chief operating officer of Truman's Lakewood facility, and John Bluford, president and CEO of the Truman system.
Credit Mike Sherry / The Hale Center for Journalism

The weekend shooting death of a former Army paratrooper in Kansas City highlights deficiencies in the care provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs, U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, a Missouri Republican, said during a visit to to Kansas City on Thursday.

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Health
5:36 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

Kansas City Ranks High In Medical Access, According To New Report

Kansas City ranks No. 4 among cities in the United States in access residents have to quality doctors and hospitals, according to a report released by Vitals, a website that collects data on doctors and provider quality.

The report considered provider-to-resident ratios, doctor quality, ease of getting an appointment and wait times.

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Up To Date
1:18 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

Meet Three Outstanding Law Enforcement Canines

ATF explosives detection canine, Roxi.

Law enforcement dogs these days can do some incredible things: sniffing out the chemicals used to start an arson fire, getting illegal drugs off our streets, or finding evidence in shootings and explosives investigations.

On this edition of Up to Date, host Steve Kraske meets three law enforcement dogs, and their handlers, to find out what it takes for a dog to become a key part of a law enforcement team.

Roxi 

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Health
8:31 am
Thu May 29, 2014

Father Favors Kansas Diversion Bill For Mentally Ill Combat Veterans

Jim Brann, a retired telecommunications executive from Overland Park, testified Wednesday in favor of a bill aimed at providing treatment to mentally ill veterans who have committed crimes.
Credit Dave Ranney / KHI News Service

The father of a combat veteran who says that mental illness played a role in his son’s bad conduct discharge from the U.S. Marine Corps is asking Kansas legislators to introduce a bill aimed at reducing the likelihood that a mentally ill veteran would spend time in jail or prison instead of being treated.

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Arts & Culture
8:13 am
Thu May 29, 2014

Maya Angelou, On Trying To 'Do Better And To Be Better'

Author Maya Angelou died Wednesday in Winston-Salem, N.C. She was 86.
Credit Dwight Carter, 2001

Poet, memoirist and political activist Maya Angelou died Wednesday at the age of 86, reportedly after a long illness. 

“Hello, good morning ..." is how Angelou opened the conversation when we talked by phone last week. At home in Winston-Salem, N.C., she joked about the weather in the Midwest.

"Because I think you people change weather in the way that other people change clothes," she said with a laugh.

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Government
7:52 am
Thu May 29, 2014

Kansas City Council Committee To Tackle Fate Of Kemper Arena

Replace or repurpose? Rival proposals clash on aging Kemper Arena.
Credit City of Kansas City, Mo.

There will be no blue ribbon citizens panel to decide the future of Kemper Arena. The Kansas City, Mo., city council Economic Development Committee has decided to tackle the matter itself.

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Health
5:00 am
Thu May 29, 2014

KC Checkup: Five Questions For Pam Seymour

Pam Seymour is executive director of Shepard's Center of KC Central.
Credit Alex Smith / KCUR

The older you get, the more complicated and expensive health care becomes. A study from the National Institutes of Health shows that half the money that’s spent on Americans’ health is spent on care after age 65.

That’s why changes to the health system – like the Affordable Care Act and Medicare reform — can be especially concerning to older people.

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Health
5:38 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

First Peanut Allergy-Friendly Royals Event Of Season Thrills Handful Of Fans

Twin brothers Camden and Preston Tyrrell watch the Royals with their father, Chris.
Credit Alex Smith / KCUR

For fifteen-year-old Antonio Franco, going out to something like a baseball game can be complicated, even dangerous.

“I accidently ate the wrong kind of cookie,” he says, remembering a severe allergic reaction. “We ended up having to rush to the hospital.”

Franco is one of an increasing number of children and teenagers who have severe food allergies, especially to peanuts. Because peanuts and foods containing peanut traces are so common, these kids and their parents are often limited in where they can go for fun.

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Health
5:32 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

New Missouri Dental Director Wants State To Be A 'Guiding Light'

Dr. B. Ray Storm, Missouri's new state dental director, addressed members of an oral health access committee in Kansas City on Wednesday.
Credit Mike Sherry / The Hale Center for Journalism

Missouri’s new state dental director has been on board for about half a year, and during a visit to Kansas City on Wednesday, he outlined a number of initiatives aimed at making the state a national leader in oral health.

“I want (other states) to come to us,” Dr. B. Ray Storm said at a meeting of the Oral Health Access Committee, which is part of a regional health initiative through the Mid-America Regional Council. “Let us be the guiding light for the rest of the country.”

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Community
11:25 am
Wed May 28, 2014

Meet The Six Kansas City Area Kids Headed To The National Spelling Bee

Ethan Perris
Credit Scripps National Spelling Bee

The Scripps National Spelling Bee takes place this week in Washington, D.C., and the Kansas City area will be represented by six youth from middle schools across the region.

Two local competitors received international media attention for their marathon battle to represent Jackson County, but besides Kush Sharma, who won that battle, five other students are also representing the Kansas City area in the national competition.

Here are the six kids to root for as the National Spelling Bee commences:

Ethan Perris

Age: 13

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Health
8:52 am
Wed May 28, 2014

Kansas Governor Finds Additional $9.5 Million For Mental Health

Gov. Sam Brownback announced his administration will spend an additional $9.5 million on mental health services with most of the money earmarked for family preservation programs. The governor, center, is flanked by KDADS Secretary Shawn Sullivan and DCF Secretary Phyllis Gilmore.
Credit Dave Ranney / KHI News Service

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback on Tuesday announced that his administration will spend an additional $9.5 million on services for the mentally ill in the fiscal year that begins July 1.

“This is a major, important issue,” Brownback said during an afternoon press conference at the Statehouse.

Most of new money - $7 million – will come from the state’s federally funded Temporary Assistance for Needy Families block grant.

The remainder will come from other sources including:

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Sports
6:45 am
Wed May 28, 2014

College Athletes Can’t Profit On Their Own Image, But The NCAA Can

College athletes like Jenny Pinkston, a former track standout at Olathe East High School and currently a heptathlete at Wichita State University, are barred by NCAA rules from profiting off of their own image or likeness.
Credit Jeremy Bernfeld / KCUR

The NCAA makes billions of dollars selling the rights to televise games and selling merchandise and jerseys. But a spate of court cases making their way through the judicial system could put those billions in jeopardy.

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Health
4:52 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Cancer Clinical Trial Program In Kansas Awaits Decision On Its Fate

A high-mag image of Seminoma, one of many types of cancer treated at Wichita-based Cancer Center of Kansas.
Credit Wikimedia / CC

Kraig Moore is one of the patients helping test experimental cancer treatments through a clinical trials program operated by the Wichita-based Cancer Center of Kansas. The 47-year-old psychologist, who also operates a bed-and-breakfast near Mulvane, Kan., was diagnosed last January with stage 3b metastatic malignant melanoma.

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Veterans Affairs
4:29 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Rep. Yoder Says Veterans Need More Flexibility In Receiving Care

Kansas Rep. Kevin Yoder visited the VA Medical Center Tuesday in Kansas City, Mo., to check on local wait times.
Credit Elle Moxley / KCUR

Kansas Rep. Kevin Yoder says it's time for a change in national leadership at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Yoder, an Overland Park Republican, visited the VA Medical Center in Kansas City, Mo., on Tuesday amid growing concern over long wait times for veterans. 

"Many of my constituents are lacking confidence in the response to what's occurred in Phoenix and across the nation," says Yoder. "They would like to see a new secretary and new leadership."

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JCC Shootings
3:39 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Alleged Jewish Community Center Assailant Faces Additional Charges

Frazier Glenn Miller is accused of killing three people in last month's shootings at Jewish centers in Johnson County, Kan.
Credit Courtesy photo / Johnson County Sheriff's Office

Prosecutors have charged the neo-Nazi accused of killing three people at Jewish facilities in Overland Park, Kan., last month with several more felonies.

The Johnson County District Attorney’s office says Frazier Glenn Miller shot at and tried to kill three additional people, endangered a fourth and fired into the Jewish Community Center knowing there were people inside.

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Harvest Public Media
7:49 am
Tue May 27, 2014

Is Corn Dust Killing Bees?

Bees at these hives near a corn field in Cherokee, Iowa, must pass through a yellow plastic trap that scrapes off a bit of pollen. Researchers are studying whether insecticide-coated seeds could be harming the bee population.
Credit Amy Mayer / Harvest Public Media

Nathan Anderson stops his red pick-up truck alongside a cornfield on his farm near Cherokee, Iowa. The young farmer pulls on a heavy brown hoodie, thick, long, sturdy gloves and a beekeeper’s hat with a screened veil. He approaches a pair of hives sitting on the edge of a field recently planted with corn and adjusts a yellow plastic flap that traps some of the pollen the bees bring back to their hive.

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Agriculture
7:23 am
Mon May 26, 2014

Aquaponics Brings Fish And Produce Under One Roof

At All Seasons Harvest near Cedar Falls, Iowa, lettuce, kale and herbs are grown in nutrient-rich water fertilized by tanks of farmed tilapia fish.
Credit Pat Blank / Harvest Public Media

Farmers all over the country are using hydroponic technology to grow produce indoors, year-round, in nutrient rich water. And fish farmers around the globe have figured out how to raise their catch in tanks. Now, some operations are combining the two, raising both produce and fish.

Many so-called “aquaponics” operations use the waste from fish farming to fertilize the water used in growing hydroponic produce.

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Sports
7:09 am
Mon May 26, 2014

Tom Watson Posts Best Tournament Finish in Three Years

Tom Watson finished in second place at the Senior PGA Championship in Benton Harbor, Michigan. It was his best finish since winning the same event in 2011.

Colin Montgomerie of Scotland won by four strokes.

Watson said he has mixed feelings about finishing second.

“You need to make the putts to win and I didn’t do it today, but I certainly had the opportunities today,” he said. “It could have been a real low round today, and so I come away with a really good feeling inside about the way I played.”

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Holidays
6:00 am
Mon May 26, 2014

Is Memorial Day About Grief, Glory Or Hot Dogs?

Memorial Day is celebrated by some as a day of mourning, some as a day of patriotism and some as a day to kick back and barbecue.
Credit Ben Franske-Wikimedia / CC

Memorial Day is one of America’s most confusing holidays. Depending on the celebrant, it can be a day of grief, glory — or backyard barbecues. To understand America’s "most confusing holiday," you’ve got to ponder why we get the day off in the first place.

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Up To Date
4:32 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' May 23-25

Critics Cynthia Haines and Steve Walker recommend "Fed Up," the documentary "that the food industry doesn't want you to see."

Looking for a great film to see during the long holiday weekend of May 23-26? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • The Hornet's Nest
  • Only Lovers Left Alive
  • The Lunchbox

Steve Walker:

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Beyond Our Borders
2:42 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

Cycling Group Gets Women Pedaling East Of Troost

The female cycling club, Sisters That Are Riding Strong, takes a 10-mile ride every Sunday. It sets off from the Southeast Community Center, at 4201 E. 63rd Street Trafficway in Kansas City, Mo.
Credit Courtesy photo / Denesha Snell

Denesha Snell remembers the first time her cycling club rode through Swope Park and down the Paseo.

"There was a guy in the park, and he said, 'Somebody told me there was a bunch of black women on bikes.' And he didn't believe it. We rode past him, and his mouth dropped to the floor because he could not believe it," says Snell. "The myth is that we don't work out and we don't exercise."

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Student Transfers
11:29 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Gov. Nixon To Veto Student Transfer Bill With Private Option

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is planning to veto a law that would have created a 'private option' for students in unaccredited school districts in Kansas City and St. Louis.
Credit Dan Verbeck / KCUR

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon plans to veto legislation that would have allowed students in the unaccredited Kansas City school district to transfer to private schools.

In a statement Friday, Nixon blasted state lawmakers for failing to fix the current school transfer law.

“Throughout the legislative session I repeatedly made it clear that any effort to send public dollars to private schools through a voucher program would be met by my veto pen,” Nixon said. “The General Assembly ignored my warnings, and this veto will be the result.”

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Harvest Public Media
8:00 am
Fri May 23, 2014

'Fed Up' Links Obesity Epidemic to Sugar, Industry, Government

Scene from 'Fed Up,' an activist documentary that focuses on childhood obesity.
Credit RADiUS-TWC

Just who’s to blame for the childhood obesity epidemic? Over the years, the finger has been pointed at parents, video games and vending machines, to name a few.

To the makers of the new activist documentary, “Fed Up,” the bottom line of blame lies with a simple substance poured into our diets every day: sugar. And the pushers of what this film calls a drug and “the new tobacco” are the food industry and our own government.

“What if our whole approach to this epidemic has been dead wrong?” the film’s narrator, TV journalist Katie Couric, says in the film’s open.

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Government
7:58 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Kansas City Council Approves $8 Million In Phase II Streetcar Planning Contracts

Freshly returned from Thursday's ground breaking for phase one of the streetcar system, the Kansas City city council committed $8 million to getting started on phase two.

Two area firms – HDR Engineering and Burns and McDonnell – were chosen to plan southward and eastward extensions of the streetcar line.

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Government
7:57 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Kansas City Advances To Final 4 In Republican Convention Bid

Kansas City Mayor Sly James likes Kansas City's chances to host the GOP convention.
Credit Frank Morris / KCUR

Kansas City has survived another round in the competition to host the 2016 Republican National Convention (RNC).  

The three other contenders are Cleveland, Dallas and Denver. Las Vegas and Cincinnati dropped out Thursday afternoon.

Kansas City Mayor Sly James says RNC site selection scouts clearly like what they see in Kansas City.  

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Arts & Culture
6:58 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Film Review: Embedded With U.S. Troops Fighting In 'The Hornet's Nest'

ABC News journalist Mike Boettcher embeds himself and his son with U.S. troops in Afghanistan in "The Hornet's Nest."
Credit Courtesy / HighRoad Media

For all the comic book mayhem thrust on summer movie audiences, there’s never a sense that anything’s at stake besides how much money the studios will bank. That’s what makes the new documentary The Hornet’s Nest – a movie about a real war, not one constructed of computer graphics - essential viewing to people crying out for substance.

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