WRITER: Dylan Lysen

Some KU faculty support controversial hiring process for dean; they say 'crisis' demands it

Another group of University of Kansas faculty is wading into the unusual appointment of a dean at the university, this time in support of KU leadership’s controversial plan to bypass its normal hiring procedures. In an open letter to the Journal-World, a group of 14 faculty members associated with the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences — led by Maryemma Graham, a distinguished professor for the college ...

Douglas County lawmakers appreciate Kelly's focus on schools, Medicaid, child welfare

Lawmakers representing Douglas County in the Kansas Legislature were glad to hear Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly’s focus on three main issues during her State of the State address Wednesday. “There were no surprises for me from what the governor discussed in her State of the State,” said state Rep. Jim Karleskint, R-Tonganoxie, who also represents Eudora. “I agree with her priorities on funding schools, ...

All the performers at this year's Busker Fest will be women

A popular annual festival in downtown Lawrence is going to look a little different this year. The 12th annual Lawrence Busker Festival, scheduled for May 24-26, will feature only female performers, organizer Richard Renner said Wednesday. Renner decided to go with such a lineup after Linsey Lindberg, who performs at the event each year as Strong Woman Mama Lou, explained that women were often overlooked when ...

Go, See, Do | 'Ovation! USD 497 Talent Show,' author talk with Chigozie Obioma

Update, 8:40 p.m. Friday, Jan. 18, 2019: Kaw Valley Eagles Day has been canceled because of inclement weather. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Clinton Lake said in an email to the Journal-World that no alternate date has been set yet. This weekend, the talents of local middle and high school students will be on display for all to see — and on one of Lawrence's biggest stages, too. “Ovation! USD 497 ...

Lawrence lawmaker sponsors bill to change Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day

A local lawmaker is pushing to change a holiday that honors a European man who “discovered” America to honor instead the people who originally inhabited the land. State Rep. Boog Highberger, D-Lawrence, is co-sponsoring a bill with Wichita Democrat Rep. Ponka-We Victors, who is Native American, to change the state’s recognition of the second Monday of October from Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day, ...

Lawrence Cultural Arts Commission changes Culture Chat format to encourage more public turnout

A new year means a new way to chat with the Lawrence Cultural Arts Commission. The commission will change the format of its monthly Culture Chat for 2019, said Porter Arneill, the city liaison for the advisory board that focuses on culture and art in town. This year, the chat will continue to take place in the afternoon of the fourth Tuesday of every month, but it will focus on a specific topic each meeting ...

Mike Amyx sworn in to Legislature; Lawrence now has all-Democratic delegation

TOPEKA — With the addition of state Rep. Mike Amyx on Monday, Democrats entirely represent the city of Lawrence in the Kansas Legislature for the first time since at least 1917. While Lawrence is now completely blue, the rest of the House of Representatives took a turn in the other direction for an overall more conservative Statehouse. Chief Justice Lawton Nuss swore in Amyx as the representative for the ...

Locally produced film examines acceptance of diversity, immigration in Garden City

When it comes to immigration, Lawrence filmmaker Steve Lerner said he finds the national debate has generally become polarized, rage-filled and uncivil. But in Garden City, a small town in a generally conservative area of southwest Kansas, the residents seem to have a different view, he said. “There is something happening there that is much more civilized than the national dialogue would suggest,” Lerner ...

With local Rep. Horn leading the way, Statehouse opens private lactation room

During her first session as a state representative in 2018, Lawrence Democrat Eileen Horn did not have many options to breastfeed or pump breastmilk for her then 3-month-old son Bowie. At one point, she had to pump breast milk underneath her desk in a shared office just to find some privacy because a dedicated room for that activity was not available, she told the Journal-World. “It’s stressful and just ...

Lawrence to receive 5-7 inches of snow by early Saturday afternoon

A rainy Friday is expected to give way to a snowy Saturday in Lawrence. The area will likely receive between 5 and 7 inches of snow beginning Friday night and lasting until early Saturday afternoon, said Bryan Baerg, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Topeka. The weather service issued a winter storm warning shortly after 8:30 p.m. Friday, and it will remain in effect through 6 p.m. ...

Lane expansion for west leg of K-10 will be priority for state Rep.-elect Amyx; local leaders weigh in on other legislative priorities

For state Rep.-elect Mike Amyx, D-Lawrence, addressing the “monster” Kansas Highway 10 corridor in the Lawrence area will be a priority during his freshman session as a member of the Kansas House of Representatives. The western leg of the highway, which is in his district, has become a safety issue, Amyx said Thursday morning during a Legislative Priority Breakfast forum at Maceli’s in downtown Lawrence. ...

Go, See, Do | "Who Will Tell Your Story," Story Slam and "Documented" screening

If you want some pointers from a professional writer about how to record the important stories in your life, the Lawrence Public Library has you covered. A new class, “Who Will Tell Your Story,” will teach attendees how to identify important stories in their lives and write about them as a recorded legacy for their families, according to a news release from the library. Cathy Hamilton, who once wrote for ...

KU football player Pooka Williams applies for diversion in domestic battery case

Updated 9:40 a.m. Wednesday University of Kansas star football player Pooka Williams has applied for a diversion of the domestic battery charge he is facing, his attorney Hatem B. Chahine said Wednesday morning, and the court has granted his request. The terms of the diversion were not available Wednesday morning. Williams appeared in court Wednesday morning. At the hearing, the court scheduled him to appear ...

Many Douglas County businesses providing goods for Gov.-elect Kelly's inauguration festivities

Many locally owned Douglas County businesses will contribute in some way to the festivities when Democrat Laura Kelly is officially sworn in as the state’s governor next week. Communities from all over the state are providing goods — including flowers, food and music — for Kelly’s inauguration, which will take place Monday in Topeka. Of the 35 businesses contributing, 11 are located in Lawrence, the ...

At trial of Lawrence man, woman describes being raped as teen, devastation that followed

Occasionally fighting back tears, a woman told a jury on Tuesday how she was raped by a man she met at a college bar — an incident that her family said has cast a shadow over her life. “She would have nightmares and get in bed with me,” the mother said of her daughter, who was 17 when the alleged rape took place on Sept. 11, 2016. “She hasn’t done that since she was a baby.” Jurors heard testimony ...

January off to a warm start in Lawrence but could flip to colder than normal

January weather in Lawrence is off to a warmer-than-normal start, but it could flip the other way before the end of the month, said Mary Knapp, a climatologist at Kansas State University. Temperatures in Lawrence reached the high 50s and low 60s on Sunday and Monday. Similar weather is expected for Tuesday, said Bryan Baerg, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Topeka. Those temperatures are ...

Famous sidekick Dr. John Watson takes the lead in new Theatre Lawrence production 'Holmes and Watson'

A trusty sidekick to one of the greatest detectives in literature will find himself at the center of a story in a Theatre Lawrence show this month. Rather than the normal story of Sherlock Holmes solving a complex mystery as his sidekick Dr. John Watson chronicles the events for the audience, Watson will be the one trying to solve the mystery in the play “Holmes and Watson.” “Dr. Watson usually is not ...

December health code inspections: 4 found out of compliance in Douglas County

Four establishments in Douglas County failed state health code inspections in December. Each month, I take a look at inspection results and list every place either listed out of compliance or with 10 or more code violations. Full reports are available online at agriculture.ks.gov. There, you can find details about specific violations, which can vary. Noncritical citations include unlabeled products, improperly ...

Lawrence hotel closes two rooms because of bed bugs

A Lawrence hotel recently closed two rooms to the public because of a bed-bug infestation. The University Inn and Suites, 2309 Iowa St., closed two rooms after a health code investigation by the Kansas Department of Agriculture found dead bed bugs in the box springs of rooms on the fourth and fifth floors. After a Dec. 19 inspection, the owners of the hotel voluntarily closed the two rooms to the public, ...

Former housing supervisor waives right to preliminary hearing in child sex abuse case

A former Haskell Indian Nations University housing supervisor charged with sex crimes against two children spanning a decade waived his right to a preliminary hearing in the case on Thursday. Thomas A. Spotted Horse, 60, formerly of Lawrence and now of Lawton, Okla., appeared in Douglas County District Court, where Judge James McCabria accepted his decision to waive the hearing, at which the judge would have ...