WRITER: Kim Callahan

Avid walkers tout benefits of keeping fit while cultivating familiarity with Lawrence

Rod Kummer used to be a big runner — marathons, the whole bit. Now he's a big walker. True, he's 70 and his joints aren't quite what they used to be, but that's not the main reason he has slowed his pace. The main reason is a realization, shared by many in the wellness community, that walking is maybe the single best exercise for your body — and your spirit. “There is probably no exercise that provides ...

Instead of herbicides, Lawrence is using a herd of goats to weed a city park

Updated at 8:44 p.m. Thursday The City of Lawrence has enlisted the eager assistance of goats to help weed a city park. The Parks and Recreation Department is using about 50 goats in Prairie Park, 2730 Harper St., to assist with eradicating honeysuckle, which is an invasive plant. The program is intended to be a natural alternative to using herbicides. Honeysuckle has overtaken an area of the park, crowding ...

'He will be one of the leaders in aerospace engineering'; nontraditional KU student wins Astronaut Scholarship

Lawrence resident Julian Moreno did not follow the typical path from high school to accomplished scholar. Instead of going straight to college, he joined the U.S. Marine Corps, and a few years after that he married and started a family. The uncommon path has taken longer, but it has led to uncommon success for Moreno, a 25-year-old University of Kansas student who recently won a prestigious Astronaut ...

Crews fight fire at apartment building on Louisiana Street

Multiple fire crews and police vehicles responded to an afternoon fire at an apartment complex just east of The Oread hotel. People at the scene, 1145 Louisiana St., indicated that a passerby sometime around 3 p.m. had seen flames erupting from a laundry room area at the basement level and shooting up to two stories above. Zane Morgan, a battalion chief with Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical, told the ...

Barbour family

English teacher assigned a little pandemic project to her Old West Lawrence neighbors and wound up with a book

Every house, whether humble or grand, has a story. Something about it is interesting: the way it was built, a thing that happened there, someone who lived there, someone who died there. Krista Barbour knew this from owning her own 117-year-old house in Old West Lawrence, but it wasn’t until she started spending a lot of time outdoors during the coronavirus pandemic that it truly dawned on her how many of ...

Law enforcement says 'large police presence' in East Lawrence after chase was for public safety; suspect still at large

A suspect in an hourslong police incident Sunday was still at large Monday, after a lengthy pursuit through downtown Lawrence and a manhunt kept an East Lawrence neighborhood on edge. Dozens of law enforcement personnel from the Lawrence Police Department and the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office descended on the neighborhood around New York Elementary School on Sunday evening as they searched for a driver who ...

Suspect still at large after hourslong search in East Lawrence following police chase

Updated at 9 a.m. Monday A suspect in a police chase who fled on foot through an East Lawrence neighborhood Sunday evening is still at large, Lawrence police said Monday morning. Police had few other details to provide, citing yet to be completed reports in the investigation, but did share this additional information Monday morning: The pursuit began about 7 p.m. Sunday, when officers were dispatched to The ...

78-year-old running 30 miles a day from LA to D.C.; he'll be in Lawrence halfway through his 100-day journey

The Forrest Gump comparisons are legion but not altogether apt. For one, accomplished runner Stan Cottrell is not running across the country because he’s bereft. On the contrary, he’s downright bubbly. For another, he’s not 38; he’s 78. He’s been running his whole life — about 270,000 miles total, he says — and he’s not likely to just one day tire of it and go home. “Just because you reach a ...

Driver injured as car crashes into house in North Lawrence

Updated at 2:20 p.m. Wednesday Multiple emergency vehicles responded Wednesday morning to a neighborhood in North Lawrence where a car had crashed into a house. The incident occurred shortly before 9 a.m. at 602 Elm St., where a black SUV with broken windows could be seen lodged into the west side of the yellow bungalow-style house, with a home air-conditioning unit crumpled alongside. An ambulance was seen ...

Lawrence man who was temporarily homeless is grateful for Humane Society program that helped him keep his dog

When Lawrence resident Robert Jackson found himself “pretty much homeless” last winter, he was thankful to find a local hotel that, through a city program, was providing shelter for homeless people. But the warm room wasn’t exactly free. The price? He’d have to give up his dog to stay there. The thought was unthinkable. Jackson’s dog Webster, a young Labrador/hound mix, had been his constant ...

Man taken into custody after allegedly shattering downtown Lawrence windows

A 31-year-old man was taken into police custody Friday morning after he allegedly shattered at least three windows in a downtown business. The incident occurred around 8:30 a.m. at the southeast corner of Eighth and Vermont streets, where the office of Paul Werner Architects is located. Multiple police vehicles responded to the scene, and officers were seen arresting a man and placing him in a police car. ...

Tory Roberson, Jessica Cooley, Wayne Briggs and Steven Elliott

Just Food seeks community's help in its 'biggest time of need'

Summer is always Just Food’s busiest season — a time of year when the community’s need for food assistance increases — and this summer the lingering coronavirus pandemic has made it even busier. “Kids being out of school is a big challenge for folks with families,” said Elizabeth Keever, Just Food’s executive director, noting that people typically face increased food costs when their kids aren’t ...

Lawrence woman rescues boy from Clinton Lake

A peaceful day fishing turned traumatic Saturday afternoon as a Lawrence woman rescued a drowning boy from Clinton Lake. The woman, Mandy Dreiling, said she had taken her 9-year-old son, Jesse Spates, to the lake for its “free fishing” day. They had just settled in with their new poles and fresh bait along the cove near Clinton Marina when she spotted a young boy playing in the water. As she looked for ...

Art exhibit quietly maps the achievements of Kansas women who 'lived good lives'

From a distance the exhibit wall of the Lawrence Public Library looks like a display wall in a Laura Ashley store — with its neat row of children’s dresses in an array of pastel and floral fabrics. But get closer and you see that the dresses — meant to honor Kansas women — are made of something far more prosaic: paper maps. The dress patterns aren’t blossoms and leaves and vines, but interstates, ...

Movie starring 'Breaking Bad' actor is a triumph for Lawrence writer — and for disability inclusion

Michael Coffey has been writing since he was a kid, extracting all sorts of drama from his lively imagination. The first story he remembers writing — in junior high — was “As the Clock Ticked On,” which he describes as a scary tale of suspense. Decades — and many creations — later, though still drawn to thrillers, he has learned that the most compelling stories are often those drawn from everyday ...

As 2021 becomes record-breaking year for anti-LGBTQ legislation, Lawrence Rainbow group redoubles drive for inclusion

While lawmakers in Topeka — and around the nation — are working to exclude transgender kids from certain activities and locations, some families in Lawrence are doing just the opposite: trying to make schools — and life generally — more inclusive for LGBTQ children. “No one likes you, no one wants you — they’re just getting bombarded by that message every day,” parent Matt Enyart said of the way ...

Just Food

Just right: $500K renovation dramatically expands food pantry, giving it an inviting grocery store vibe

Early Wednesday morning Steven Elliott and several other workers stocked the shelves at Just Food with canned goods, fresh produce, an impressive array of meats and quite a bit of good cheer. The work was the same as most mornings — preparing the pantry at 1000 E. 11th St. for the hundreds of area residents who require food assistance each day. But Wednesday it was taking place in a newly renovated space that ...

Interim Police Chief Anthony Brixius

Of chief concern: Interim leader of Lawrence police stresses importance of conversations, accountability

Anthony Brixius didn’t grow up wanting to be a cop. After a childhood spent between Lawrence and Wichita, he had decided to become a teacher and, like his mother before him, enrolled at the University of Kansas, where he earned a degree in secondary education. He soon realized, though, that despite his “commitment to service,” standing in front of a classroom all day wasn’t the best fit for him. Nor ...

Nomadic family ready to hit the road again after 2-month pandemic delay

The Thomas family’s Great American itinerary did not include two months parked at a Baldwin City motel, but here they are. Before the family sold their home and most of their possessions to embark on their new nomadic life, they listed — and planned for — a lot that could go wrong. A deadly pandemic that would shut down the country was not on that list. Nor was it even in their wildest imagination as ...

Jui-jitsui

'Do what you want': Blind man's love of jiu jitsu makes inclusion easier for others

When opponents grapple with Nick Hoekstra in jiu jitsu they tend to hold back — at least at first. His blindness gives them pause. But when it becomes apparent that he is determined to win, their hesitation evaporates, and he becomes just like everyone else, an equal. That’s the world of the dojo, he says: a place of respect for all comers. It’s not the world itself, though, where fitting in and ...