Top Stories

Photo courtesy Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site

Crowdfunding and an alternate reality game provide a modern boost for ancient mounds

After word spread that the cash-strapped Cahokia Mounds Museum Society was crowdfunding to raise $7,500 to print brochures for the storied Illinois landmark -- the largest prehistoric Indian site north of Mexico -- donations poured in from down the road, around the globe and from a mysterious alternate reality.
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Cityscape

Penguins prepare to return to public life

They're back! The Saint Louis Zoo's Penguin and Puffin Coast reopens Thursday with a special parade.

Politically Speaking: Previewing Tuesday's city election

In our weekly podcast, reporters Jo Mannies, Jason Rosenbaum and Rachel Lippmann look at aldermanic contests. Also, Lewis Reed is surprised he's not facing a strong challenge.

In Depth

Ava channels Mary Eliza Mahoney , the country's first black professional nurse.
Chauncia Boyd Rogers

Playing dress-up is unique black history lesson for one preschooler

Oprah Winfrey, Zora Neale Hurston and Ida B. Wells, are just some of the figures 5-year-old Ava Rogers has embodied during Black History Month.
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The Missouri State Highway Patrol has put out a call for trooper applicants, while it acknowledges it has struggled to attract minority recruits. The agency's 99th recruit class graduated in December.
Courtesy Missouri Department of Public Safety, Flickr

With dropping diversity, Missouri Highway Patrol seeks minority applicants

The Missouri State Highway Patrol is trying some new tactics to attract more minority candidates as it opens the application process for its next recruit class.
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Classical Music

Classical 90.7 KWMU-3

Classical music 24-7. Listen online or with an HD radio.

Four finalists have been chosen in the search for the next chancellor of the St. Louis Community College system.

The school said Friday that the four will appear in public forums next week, so students, staff and members of the community can meet them and ask questions. The forums will be held at the school’s four campuses – Florissant Valley, Forest Park, Meramec and Wildwood – as well as at its administrative center downtown.

The final candidates are:

Law enforcement had blocked off this house along Highway H in Tyrone. It's one of multiple scenes being investigated.
Scott Harvey | KSMU

The Texas County, Missouri, coroner says all seven people killed in an overnight house-to-house rampage were adults.

The victims were found at four homes in Tyrone, about 40 miles north of the Arkansas border. The gunman was discovered in a neighboring county. He was dead from what appears to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He has been identified as Joseph Jesse Aldridge, 36, of Tyrone. He is believed to be a cousin of the victims: ​

(via Google Maps screen capture)

The Normandy Schools Collaborative has hired a Chicago-area search firm to help find a new superintendent, but that person may not have an education background.

The district’s governing board voted Thursday night to hire ProAct Search for $25,000, with the goal of having a new superintendent in place by July 1. The district’s new leader would replace Ty McNichols, who resigned last month; Charles Pearson, who had been head of the appointed governing board, is serving as interim superintendent.

Clark Terry
Facebook | with permission

St. Louis jazz trumpeter Clark Terry made his first trumpet. His neighbors quickly got tired of listening to the racket, and raised money to buy the 10-year-old a real instrument.

Terry became a legend: He was a star soloist with the Count Basie Orchestra and Duke Ellington Orchestra; he led his own big band; and he was the first black man to play in “The Tonight Show” house band. Terry died Saturday; he was 94.

Brewing tank outside The Schlafly Tap Room in downtown St. Louis.
Wayne Pratt|St. Louis Public Radio

The increasingly competitive craft beer sector has at least two high-profile St. Louis companies looking to make inroads in Chicago, one of the largest markets in North America.

Urban Chestnut and Schlafly recently struck separate distribution deals to start selling in Chicago, which the Brewers Association says is the third largest overall beer market in the country.

Traci Blackmon
stlpositivechange.org

Like flares on a highway, some of the headlines that flashed by in recent days signal danger.

First came good news from Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon. St. Louis labor unions have agreed to work 24-hours a day with no overtime to quickly build a football stadium. That's proof that St. Louisans can rise to the occasion – in this case, the perceived crisis of losing an NFL team – when we see that the region’s reputation and future are at stake.

Tom Schweich announces his bid for governor last month (January 2015)
Jo Mannies/St. Louis Public Radio

Missouri Auditor Tom Schweich came across as a relatively mild-mannered politician, but when he formally declared his candidacy for governor last month, he came out swinging.

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

Within minutes of the news of Auditor Tom Schweich's death, Gov. Jay Nixon ordered all flags on Missouri property lowered to half-staff.

But the governor will soon have a much bigger decision to make: who to appoint as Schweich's successor.

Missouri law seems to suggest that a decision must be made rapidly:

Austin Machine employees in O'Fallon, Mo., participate in the ice bucket challenge.
Courtesty of ALS Association St. Louis Regional Chapter

Six months ago, the ALS Association’s ice bucket challenge became a viral sensation, raising tens of millions of dollars for the organization.

Larry Morris, left, and Art Silverblatt talk to ‘St. Louis on the Air’ host Don Marsh about media literacy and critical thinking on Feb. 26, 2015.
Alex Heuer / St. Louis Public Radio

You’ve likely seen Facebook or Twitter posts from friends or family members that link to information that seems almost but not quite plausible. Those stories often are about politicians; recently several surfaced that purported to be about Michael Brown. How can you figure out if the video or story is real or not? It comes down to critical thinking and media literacy.

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Special project

All Ferguson: Your guide to the facts, issues and grand jury evidence

The death of 18-year-old Michael Brown brought to the fore issues that have been developing for decades. Here are our efforts to illuminate what has happened and reflect on-going conversations.

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Become part of our Public Insight Network. We use the PIN to get insight from people like you. Today's question: Tell us your St. Louis “code" words

The Listening Project

The Listening Project reaches into the community to discuss the recommendations from “For the Sake of All,” a study of health, education, and economic disparities.