Sara Shepherd (Reporter)

I’m the Journal-World’s enterprise reporter, tasked with finding interesting stories that reflect the Lawrence and Douglas County communities. My beat includes daily news articles and more in-depth projects on a variety of subjects.

I also write about the Lawrence restaurant scene — where everything from garden-fresh craft cocktails to exotic Asian hotpots to bacon cheeseburgers slathered with peanut butter can all be yours (to actually eat, or just read about if you’d rather). Check out my blog, Wined & Dined, and weekly food spotlight, Off the Beaten Plate, on

Previously, I was a cops and courts reporter for The Kansas City Star, where I covered untimely death or destruction of some kind most every day for a few years. I’ve also covered suburban city government and schools for The Star and The Shawnee Dispatch, a weekly paper just up the road. My first beat at the Journal-World was features, covering food, arts, entertainment and lifestyle.

I’m a fourth-generation graduate of Kansas University, where I majored in journalism, art history and French. To reach me, call 785-832-7187 or send email to Follow me on Twitter @saramarieshep.

Recent stories

Off the Beaten Plate: Chicken fried meatloaf at Basil Leaf
April 10, 2014
The full name of this dish is “Chicken Fried Filet of Three Meatloaf” — with the three meats being pork, bison and beef.
Man sentenced for illegally selling eagle feathers at Lawrence home
April 9, 2014
A man who illegally sold bald eagle and hawk feathers in Lawrence was sentenced Wednesday in federal court. By Sara Shepherd
Beyond vegetables: Array of food, other offerings at farmers market opening for the season on Saturday
April 8, 2014
The Lawrence Farmers Market opens for the season on Saturday. It’s easy to pick up everything you need for a whole meal at the market — even the centerpiece. Meet four of the many vendors ready to help set your table. By Sara Shepherd
Weather smiles on 20th annual Brew to Brew run
April 7, 2014
This weekend’s 20th annual Brew to Brew run attracted thousands of entrants, who enjoyed near-perfect spring weather for the 40-plus mile Kansas City-to-Lawrence relay. By Sara Shepherd
Haskell Empowerment Summit aims to inspire
April 7, 2014
A little empowerment can go a long way. That’s been the case personally for Maria Boyd, and she hopes the Indigenous Empowerment Summit she’s organized for Friday at Haskell Indian Nations University will do the same for fellow students. By Sara Shepherd
Lawrencian holds out hope for lung transplant, chance at new life
April 4, 2014
David Jensen is waiting. Waiting for new lungs, and a new life. In the nearly 20 years since doctors diagnosed the Lawrence resident with a genetic disorder known as alpha-1, Jensen’s lungs have degenerated, slowly taking with them his strength, livelihood, financial stability and independence. Jensen, 53, would like to get those back. By Sara Shepherd
Indian tacos raise money, fill bellies at church’s monthly sale
April 3, 2014
Monthly Indian taco sales have been a tradition for more than 30 years at the Lawrence Indian United Methodist Church. Not only do they help the church raise needed funds, they give locals a chance to indulge in an Indian specialty rarely found on restaurant menus. By Sara Shepherd
Police continue to investigate overnight stabbing at Centennial Park
March 31, 2014
Lawrence police continue to investigate an overnight stabbing in Centennial Park. By Sara Shepherd
Jayhawker Towers resident released after Sunday sex-crime arrest
10:30 a.m., March 31, 2014 Updated 03:35 p.m.
A Kansas University student was arrested Sunday in connection with a sex crime reported on the KU campus. By Sara Shepherd
Tension normal with largely troubled population at shelter, but procedures aim to keep violence at bay
March 31, 2014
Convicted criminals, drug addicts, the mentally ill and people with none of those problems all sleep under the same roof at the Lawrence Community Shelter. That’s part of homelessness, and tension is a given, the shelter director says, but procedures are in place that typically are effective in minimizing crime and deescalating situations like the recent stabbing. By Sara Shepherd

Full story list

Recent photos

Chicken Fried Filet of Three Meatloaf at Basil Leaf Cafe, 616 W. Ninth St.

Creamy Chicken Philly Pizza at Henry T’s Bar and Grill, 3520 W. Sixth St.

Fried Twinkies at Yokohama, 1730 W. 23rd St.

Candied Cabbage Salad at Mariscos, 4821 W. Sixth St.

Seared tartare of venison at Pachamama's, 800 New Hampshire St.

Full photo list