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Among the most memorable lines in L.M. Montgomery’s beloved book “Anne of Green Gables” is one that could apply to many Missourians as easily as to the Canadian author. “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers,” she writes.

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When he first stepped onto the stage, the bright lights warming his face, Gus McAfoos had never performed with a microphone before. A stagehand adjusted the stand’s height to better suit the 11-year-old Washington boy, and as McAfoos began, he concentrated on remembering the microphone tips …

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Among a multitude of joyful and sometimes searing memories from 13 years volunteering at Franklin County CASA, one moment in particular never fails to warm Carol Gruber’s heart. She was attending a “A Winnie-the-Pooh Christmas Tail” at East Central College with the 9-year-old she’d been assi…

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For music enthusiasts, peering into Greg Krone’s violin shop in rural New Haven inspires a similar feeling to one a child would likely have while viewing the elves at work in Santa’s toy shop. Work tables display the organized chaos of custom built violins in various stages of completion, fr…

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In the days following the crash that would change his life forever, Greg Kruse couldn’t speak. Amid the flurry of monitors beeping and tubes protruding from his body, of doctors and nurses and specialists coming in and out of his room at Barnes-Jewish Hospital, St. Louis, he wanted to get a …

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In almost all of the many community projects that Norma Klemme volunteers for each year, she serves with her hands. From distributing food at the Union Food Pantry to collecting cans and boxes for the Zion United Church of Christ recycling program, her hands are her instruments. But each Oct…

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Nov. 25, 2020, is a day Mike Bursey will never forget. It’s the day he tested positive for COVID-19 and started a monthslong battle with the virus that doctors told him likely cut five to six years off his life.

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For most of human history, medics and doctors could have done little to help the one in 10 Americans who live with diabetes, a chronic condition that causes people to not produce or absorb enough insulin, the hormone that turns sugars from the food we eat into energy. People with this diseas…

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As the pandemic unfolded last year, former Kansas City Chiefs assistant and Washington native Brock Olivo moved into his Italian girlfriend’s mom’s house in Rome to spend lockdown, where they were only allowed to leave the house for trips to the pharmacy, doctor’s office or grocery store.

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Following an unprecedented year for the Washington Town & Country Fair and the city’s history, the 2021 fair dug its toes in over the weekend with good showings at its first events. The 5K, 10K and kids 200-yard dash Saturday morning and Sunday’s well-attended parade and kickoff party ma…

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For many area residents, the 50th anniversary of Six Flags St. Louis brings back memories of visiting the park as children — the heat of a sunny day in July, the taste and sticky sweetness of cotton candy, the smell of  waffle ice cream cones fresh from the oven. 

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When Fred and Serena Stuart sit down to a meal at their Gerald farm, they can often name the exact acre of land that each item on their plates comes from. They grow the vast majority themselves, and other goods are sourced from farmer friends and markets where they have a relationship with t…

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For Washington High School alumna Paige Hall, the road to success has often been more like an obstacle course than a straight sprint. Not unlike the drills she completes every weekday as an ROTC cadet at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville (SIUE), Hall’s path requires determination and…

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Over six years ago, Grace’s Place CEO Amanda Jones began envisioning a second Grace’s Place home, one to build on the impact of the Washington-based emergency shelter for children in crisis. It had only been about five years since Grace’s Place was founded in 2010, but the nonprofit already …

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In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, Genevieve Latting was in search of a new hobby. The Union-based licensed clinical social worker needed something to cure the restlessness she — and her two border collies — were facing amid their new routines. 

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They’re all what I call ‘stuff you’d find on a farm.’ Nobody wanted them, so I took them and fixed them up. They’re really educational and neat to see.” – Stan Laubinger

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Five Franklin County and St. Louis area tradeswomen made up the Four Rivers Career Center’s April 27 panel on women in trades careers. Instead of listing female role models, all of them said men had inspired them to join their fields.

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Miriam Weseman has celebrated more birthdays than most. Just weeks before her first birthday, the U.S. Congress voted to declare war on Germany, beginning the country’s direct involvement in World War I. On her second birthday, the world was preparing for a global pandemic, one that until re…

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Growing up in Washington, Heather Jensen Suerig spent almost every day with her grandmother, Toledo Thorpe. Already 70 when Suerig was born, Thorpe still played with her granddaughter each day. She also taught Suerig basic sewing skills, so she could help the neighborhood women who would com…

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For Matt Brennecke, Augusta, with its rolling vineyards and historic winemaking, has always been home. The 47-year-old is production manager at Mount Pleasant Winery, where the view from his office window is a dramatic valley scene he’s known well since boyhood. His first view of the wine-ri…

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“This little boy sees me and takes off down the sidewalk running toward me. He jumps on me and does not let go. That completely warmed my heart. I fell in love with doing this after that.”

Daniel Feth, Midwest Batman

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When Amber Raney and her husband became foster parents three and a half years ago, they opened their home to any child, of any age, needing any size or gender of clothes, at a moment’s notice. Ahead of their second placement, they were given about five hours to prepare their home for its two…

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Since its official beginnings in 1926, the legendary highway Route 66 has been bestowed with numerous nicknames: “Main Street of America,” “The Mother Road” (coined by the novelist John Steinbeck) and the “Will Rogers Highway,” among others.

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Spring into warmer weather with these 15 essential experiences for anyone living in Franklin County and beyond. Download a free printable list here. 

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Before August and Katelyn Horstmann have even turned around, their dogs Kona and Fly hop into the small bed of a muddy UTV, their tongues lolling and tails wagging excitedly. To the right is a picturesque white farmhouse and to the left a vibrantly red painted barn. A friendly pig named Babe…

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