WRITER: Lauren Fox

New limits on when establishments can serve alcohol will hurt, some restaurant and bar owners say

A new health order that places a curfew on Lawrence establishments with a liquor license will affect Rick Renfro both financially and emotionally, the Johnny’s Tavern owner said. He’s not looking forward to having to explain to people next Thursday night during the Chiefs' home opener that he can’t serve them alcohol after 9 p.m., and that he will have to get everyone out by 10 p.m. But those are the ...

Grant money less than what The Willow requested, leaving organization facing $300,000 budget shortfall

The Willow Domestic Violence Center is currently facing a $300,000 budget shortfall for fiscal year 2021, executive director Megan Stuke told the Journal-World Tuesday. On Monday, Gov. Laura Kelly announced $7.8 million in grants to Kansas domestic violence and sexual assault programs and children’s advocacy centers. These are grants that organizations such as The Willow and the Sexual Trauma and Abuse Care ...

Here’s why medical professionals say it’s even more important to get the flu shot this year

Health department staffer Kathy Colson does not want two respiratory viruses to attack her body at the same time. That’s why she said it’s especially important to get the flu shot this year amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Flu shots do not provide absolute certainty that a person will not contract influenza, but there’s a possibility they can decrease one’s chances of getting the flu or make the flu ...

Music academy’s new leader is Lawrence native eager to return to city's ‘arts and culture fabric’

A Lawrence native is returning home to serve as executive director of Americana Music Academy. Max Paley, a musician with a degree in nonprofit management, began his new role on Tuesday. As the leader of the nonprofit, Paley hopes to get more kids involved in music, raise the profile of folk music in town and continue the work of the former executive director. “I’m ... really hoping to continue and expand ...

United Way of Douglas County wins $15,000 grant from AARP to install bus stop shelters and benches

The United Way of Douglas County hopes a $15,000 grant that it recently won will help the community address a longstanding problem: a lack of seating and shelter at bus stops. Many bus stops around Lawrence lack permanent benches and shelters, and residents have left a hodgepodge of chairs and hand-built benches to provide seating at stops that don't have permanent benches. Some look better than others; many ...

Lawrence Presbyterian Manor has 2 new cases of COVID-19 among staff; Douglas County cases increase to 1,303

Two employees at Lawrence Presbyterian Manor have tested positive for COVID-19, according to a Friday news release from the organization. On Aug. 17, the Journal-World reported a cluster of cases at the long-term care facility at 1429 Kasold Drive. At the time, one employee and three residents had tested positive. The facility then had a round of mass testing on Aug. 18, and everyone received negative results. ...

The Willow purchases second shelter that will add 16 beds for survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking

The Willow Domestic Violence Center will soon have 16 additional beds for survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking. The Lawrence nonprofit, which serves Douglas, Franklin and Jefferson counties, closed on a second shelter Thursday morning. Megan Stuke, The Willow’s executive director, said the second shelter will add beds that the organization desperately needs due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which ...

After third round of mass testing at Pioneer Ridge Health & Rehab, 13 more positives, bringing total to 50

After three rounds of mass testing, 21 employees and 29 residents at Pioneer Ridge Health & Rehab have tested positive for COVID-19, according to the company that manages the facility. Of those 50 positive cases, 32 people have recovered, said Ali Ellis, marketing director for Midwest Health. The company received the full results of the third round of mass testing on Wednesday. Eight residents and five ...

Peace sign on Mass. Street is result of dying tree that told woodcarver 'what it wanted to be'

A large peace sign wood carving has cropped up on Massachusetts Street, and it’s become the subject of many selfies, car honks and conversations. Danny Mantyla, the creator of the carving, said it’s just what it looks like: a peace sign with no between-the-lines meaning. “To me it’s just a friendly gesture — just a nice hand gesture,” he said. “Be kind and have peace. I think that’s what the ...

'Heartland' author Sarah Smarsh shares what the postal service means to rural America at second Save the Post Office protest in Lawrence

A second Lawrence protest decrying recent cuts to the United States Postal Service featured brief remarks from Kansas-based author and journalist Sarah Smarsh and protest organizer Danny Caine, owner of The Raven Book Store. The protest was held Tuesday in conjunction with hundreds of other protests across the nation organized by the American Postal Workers Union (APWU) in a movement called #SaveThePostOffice. ...

1930s Lawrence home with modern addition blends old and new

A lath wall transitions the Maletsky household from its antique, original section to its modern, bright addition. Through the spaced wooden panels — once used as a wall’s foundation — one can view the living and dining room of a house originally built in the 1930s. There are wooden floors and arched doorways, windows letting in light from Barker Avenue. From the other side of the lath wall, a modern ...

All items are $2 or less at the Social Service League's back-to-school sale

Lawrence’s Social Service League is putting on a back-to-school sale starting Wednesday with all items $2 or under. The sale will take place at the league’s thrift shop, located at 905 Rhode Island St. Clothing size will range from 4T to 14/16, and the league has about 800 items in stock, said Meg Davis, secretary of the board. Pants, skirts and dresses are $1, tops are 50 cents, jackets are $2 and shoes ...

Are bars open legally in Douglas County? Health department is still determining the specifics

It’s been more than a month and a half since the health department issued a pandemic-related order requiring bars to close in Douglas County. But the health department is still determining what exactly that means. In the first week of July, Douglas County’s public health officer ordered all bars closed in an attempt to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Yet, while the order is still in place today, some bars ...

When 'there’s not a whole heck of a lot to laugh about,' Betsy Evans provides smiles with daily jokes outside her home

Everyday, there’s a new joke outside of Betsy Evans’ home in the Hillcrest neighborhood. On Thursday, the whiteboard easel read, “The best thing about the good old days was that I wasn’t good and I wasn’t old!” For the past couple months, Evans has provided the neighborhood with laughs and one-liners with her daily jokes, an effort the 80-year-old started to give people a reason to smile when ...

Dale Willey, longtime Lawrence car dealership owner and community leader, dies at 79

Dale Willey loved cars. He would work 12- to 14-hour days — six days a week — at his dealership: Dale Willey Automotive. And even after he retired, he’d still pop in four to five times a week to check in. His daughter, Carol Ryan, called her father a “very hard worker” with a work ethic that was “second to none.” But despite his dedication to his business, Willey also found the time to serve and ...

George Kritos, founder and former owner of The Mad Greek, dies at 70 from COVID-19

As a paramedic, Charlie Hiersche has dealt with many patients who have had COVID-19, but it wasn’t until his stepfather got the virus that he came to know the whole process from contraction to death. George Kritos, founder of the Massachusetts Street restaurant The Mad Greek and Hiersche’s stepfather, died from COVID-19 on Thursday in Thessaloniki, Greece. He was 70 years old. Kritos owned The Mad Greek ...

COVID-19 cases at Pioneer Ridge Health & Rehab rise to 37; 844 cases in county

Twenty-one residents and 16 employees at Pioneer Ridge Health & Rehab have tested positive for COVID-19, according to the company that manages the facility. Ali Ellis, the marketing director for Midwest Health, said that after the second round of testing at the skilled nursing facility, 15 residents and nine staff members tested positive. Prior to this second round of testing, six residents and seven staff ...

100 years ago, women nationwide gained the right to vote; in Kansas, women had that right 8 years prior

People are typically surprised to learn that women in Kansas received the right to vote in all elections — state and federal — in 1912, eight years prior to the 19th amendment, which guaranteed women nationwide the right to vote. That’s according to Diana Carlin, a former University of Kansas professor who taught courses on Kansas women’s suffrage for over 20 years. “We were way ahead of the ...

Life-size scratchboard whale, depicting history of American capitalism, showing at Lawrence Arts Center

A 51-foot-long scratchboard whale is currently on display at the Lawrence Arts Center, and Gallery Director Ben Ahlvers said it’s “one of the more incredible works of art I’ve ever been able to see in person.” The giant piece, filled with images depicting the history of American capitalism in the whale’s body, took artist Jos Sances eight months to make. “I would draw her all day. I never got tired ...

Lawrence resident and friend push limits to earn top-10 finish in 340-mile river race

Imagine being in a canoe on the Missouri River in the middle of the night. There’s a bit of moonlight, but it’s impossible to see more than a few feet ahead. Logs and buoys pop up and block parts of the river. There’s a splash somewhere near the canoe — an Asian carp, perhaps, but it could be something else. There’s a sense of excitement and mystique. Now imagine having been in this canoe for 42 ...