Best of the Beacon for week of July 30
We at the Beacon hope that you take a look at us every day, but we also know that that's not always possible. So, once a week, on Friday, we'll be highlighting some of the top stories of the week. Here are Beacon must-reads from this week.
Hot and dry -- still
The nation's worst drought in decases has led to more than half the nation's counties designated as disaster areas and spurred a House vote Thursday on a disaster-aid program for livestock farmers.
The cows are the picture of health. Surrounding them, trees are shedding leaves and the pasture underfoot is crisp and cracked, long-since gone dormant in the inhospitable heat and drought so widespread this summer. Far too early, cattle farmers are buying feed.
A new study says St. Louis suffers from more - and harsher - heat waves now than it did a half century ago. Is the trend related to global climate change?
There have been a few especially hot days in our city's past. Using hourly weather data compiled by the National Weather Service, we found the maximum air temperature (not heat index) recorded during any given hour in St. Louis, and they all happened in July.
John Busch says he has heard of other farmers simply giving up, cutting their corn and soy beans for silage to feed livestock. Busch does not think he is in that bad of shape, but yields do not seem promising.
Meeting in St. Louis next week, the Leadership Conference of Women Religious will have its first opportunity as an assembled group to consider what to do after the Vatican issued a mandate for change this spring. It calls on the conference to reorganize and more strictly observe church teachings.
Adventure Academy at Ranken Technical College gives teens in high school and middle school the chance to work on tech topics and learn the science, technology, engineering and math skills they can use in their future jobs.
Countdown to election day
Still don't know for whom to vote? Here's a brief summary of the major races and candidates on Tuesday's ballot -- and links to more comprehensive coverage. Now there's no excuse not to vote.
For months, Democrats – white and black – have talked about their concerns that race could play a major role in the battle between U.S. Reps. William Lacy Clay Jr. and Russ Carnahan over the 1st congressional seat and spill over into other contests as well.
Proponents of the federal health-care law hope more Americans will like it once they begin receiving its benefits. Polls show that many Americans who say they dislike the law don't realize it contains reforms that they embrace.
The federal health-care law may not have much to do with a statewide office that runs elections and registers businesses. But “Obamacare” has emerged as a bludgeon for GOP secretary of state candidates against each other.
As Muny-goers flock to "Pirates! (or, Gilbert & Sullivan Plunder'd)," photographer Tuan Lee also stands ready for his next freewheeling adventure. “When you assemble a team to accomplish a certain mission, you feel like pirates,” Lee said.