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Archive for May, 2012

(West Plains) – Terry L. Puckett, 19, of West Plains was arrested by the Howell County Sheriff’s Department on charges of burglary in the 2nd degree and felony stealing.  Puckett was also charged with failure to show proof of financial responsibility.  Total bail was set at $9,500.  According to reports from the Sheriff’s Department, Puckett burglarized the JCPenney store in West Plains, and stole jewelry valued at over $500 from the display.

(West Plains) – Route N in Howell County will be closed as Railroad crews repair the railroad crossing.

This section of roadway is located between County Road 4490 and County Road 137. Weather permitting, work will take place Thursday, May 31 from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The work zone will be marked with signs. Motorists are urged to use extreme caution while traveling near the area.

(Jefferson City) — The Missouri Department of Transportation is cutting back on mowing grass this summer in order to save the state about $2.6 million.

MoDOT is getting rid of one of its four seasonal mowing patrols along the state’s roads and interstate highways. The department normally mows the grass in advance of Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and Labor Day, and once in the fall.

Now, in order to save money, the department will combine the mowing usually done before the Fourth of July and Labor Day into one cutting in late July.

(West Plains) – Several new acts will join a list of crowd-pleasing favorites on the main performance stage at the 18th annual Old-Time Music, Ozark Heritage Festival, a two-day celebration of Ozarks culture set for June 15 and 16 in downtown West Plains.

Newcomers to this year’s festival include:

• The Rhythmia, an acoustic string band from the Kansas City area that performs a mix of authentic ragtime with old-time fiddle tunes.

• Lyal Strickland, a Buffalo, Mo., native who has been writing and performing since he was 13, using what he knows as a farmer with a film degree to develop songs about small-town life, big city adventure and the road in between;

• Allison Williams and the Hot Ash String Band.  Williams plays old-time clawhammer banjo in a modern context.

• The Baker Family of Winona, which features Missouri and Arkansas Junior Champion Fiddler Trustin Baker, 13, as well as his siblings.

• The Falcon Family of Springfield, who will present a cultural exchange of Native American song and dance representing several nations.

Admission to the Old Time Music Ozarks Heritage Festival is free.

For more information about the festival, visit

( West Plains)- The Avenue Theatre of West Plains presents, “The Hearts of Blue Whales, “ a play by Dave Malone, starting Friday June 1st and Saturday June 2nd, as well as June 7th – 9th.  The romantic comedy is a day in the life of two lovers who meet up six years after their last meeting.

Local actors Candi Willams and Dustin Collins make up the cast.  All performances will be held at 7 PM.  Tickets are $5 at the door.

Due to language and theme, this play is for mature audiences only.

(Jefferson City, MO)–The just-ended Memorial Day weekend was a deadly one on Missouri roads and highways.  The Highway Patrol says seven people were killed in crashes statewide, compared to four the same holiday weekend a year ago.

The holiday traffic period runs from Friday at 6:00 p.m. until midnight Monday morning.  Five of the deaths were investigated by state troopers.  Police in Sikeston and St. Louis each reported one fatality.

Three of the crashes claimed the lives of Ozarkers.  Rachelle Alling, 16, of Ozark, MO, died Friday when the vehicle she was driving ran off the roadway and hit a culvert and a driveway on Highway W south of Ozark.

Sunday, Christopher Harrah, 26, of Rolla was killed when the car he was riding in ran off a curve on Highway 185 in Franklin County, hit a  driveway, went airborne then crashed into a tree. Two others in the car were hurt.

Also Sunday, Donald Jenson, 53, of Marionville, died when his motorcycle ran off Highway 60 in Verona and hit an embankment.

The Patrol says there were no boating deaths over the weekend, although a jet ski explosion at Lake of the Ozarks seriously injured two men.

(West Plains)- The City of West Plains is seeking feedback for thepossibility of starting city council meetings at an earlier time. Publicinformation officer Laurel Thompson says the idea has been talked about for awhile.


Thompson goes on to say the city wants to get feedback fromthe taxpayers before making a final decision. Persons with comments can contactcity clerk Mallory Thompson at cityclerk@westplains.netor city administrator Tom Stehn at can also be called in to city hall at 256-7176.

ST. LOUIS (AP) — An endangered species of beetle will be reintroduced in southwest Missouri on June 5.

The St. Louis Zoo and its partners have set that date to reintroduce around 300 American burying beetles at Wah’ Kon-Tah Prairie. The project is jointly managed by the zoo, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, the Missouri Department of Conservation and The Nature Conservancy.

The nocturnal beetles spend most of their lives underground. They’re up to an inch-and-a-half long, with shiny black bodies and orange-red markings.

Experts call them “one of nature’s recyclers,” which is a nice way of saying they live off dead animals.

The American burying beetle was once found in 35 U.S. states and southern Canada. In 1989, it became the first insect designated as a federally endangered species.

(West Plains) – The West Plains and surrounding area received the best rain its had in a long time this morning, accompanied by lightning and thunder earlier in the pre-dawn hours.  As of 6 AM, the Ozark Radio Network studios had received just over nine-hundredths of an inch, as the rain continues to fall.

The National Weather Service says we will likely see sun by this afternoon, but stronger storms are possible tonight into the overnight hours.  Rain is expected until about midday tomorrow, and then we will cool off into the lower 70s on Friday before warming back up over the weekend.

According to the National Weather Service Howell County and the surrounding area is still “abnormally dry”.  You can view the drought map here.

(Mountain Home) – Two men from Mt. Home have been arrested for theft by receiving after they were found with a stolen boat in their possession Monday evening.  Baxter County Sheriff John Montgomery says Henry Nielsen Jr., 23, and Steven Staton, 39, both of Mt. Home, were arrested Monday evening.  Nielsen  had been placed on probation back on May 10 on drug possession charges and also received a 90-day sentence for DWI-third offense.  Staton was placed on a year’s probation in October 2011 for misdemeanor in marijuana possession.

According to Montgomery, the sheriff’s office received a call about 5:45 PM Monday, from the manager of Cranfield Marina about a boat, reported stolen from the marina in April.  He said the boat was headed toward the Pigeon Creek area.

When deputies arrived at Pigeon Creek, they found the boat had been loaded on a trailer and was being towed by a Ford SUV, occupied by the two men.  The vehicle was stopped and deputies determined the boat was the 1975 Kenzi that had been reported stolen back in April.

Staton and Nielsen were arrested on the misdemeanor theft by receiving charge.  The pair later were released on $500 bond each.