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Today in Lawrence: Writing kickoff; Haskell maze; Halloween concert

Today in Lawrence: Writing kickoff; Haskell maze; Halloween concert

Authentic Chinese menus find popularity at Lawrence restaurants

Here’s a revelation for you. That Chinese food many of us grew up with — think crab rangoon, General Tso’s chicken and the like — isn’t really Chinese. Those recipes, long staples in suburban buffets across the country, are American versions of Chinese food, cultivated through generations of immigrants to appeal to a more western palate.

Local Finds: Marvelous Mugs

Now that fall has officially arrived, there's no better time to curl up with a steaming cup of coffee, tea or hot cocoa. Just add a crackling fireplace, your coziest sweater and one of these cool mugs from Lawrence stores. Cheers!

Home Style: Fiesta dinnerware and the history of these happy plates

There are many reasons that Fiesta ware is the best-selling dinnerware in American history, but one of them is that the brightly colored ceramic dinnerware offers something to just about everyone.

Cooking from Scratch: The secret to flavorful pumpkin seeds

The novelty of roasting plain seeds no longer outweighs their bland flavor. While you can sprinkle a little salt on top easily enough, it never really sticks well. To get amazing salty flavor the seeds need to be brined.

Visiting professor, author to talk race, gender politics at KU

Ayesha Hardison, Kansas University’s current Langston Hughes Visiting Professor, will speak about race and gender politics today at the Kansas Union. Hardison, an associate professor of English at Ohio University, will give her presentation, titled "Of Maids and Ladies: The Ethics of Living Jane Crow" at 3:30 p.m. in the Kansas Room of the union.

Style Scout: Lacey Douglas

Tell us a secret: I can sing like Britney Spears.

Style Scout: Chance Phillippe

Whom do people say you look like? I get Justin Bieber all the time and that gets annoying!

Garden Variety: 7 uses for the overlooked acorn

Ask a forester what tree to plant for strength, pest resistance and versatility, and the answer will almost always be an oak. Yes, they produce acorns, but in the spirit of making lemonade from lemons, plant the oak anyway. When the acorns arrive in autumn seasons to come, try these overlooked uses to make the nuts a little less of a nuisance.

Fix-It Chick: Control boxelder bugs

Boxelder bugs, sometimes mistakenly referred to as stink bugs, are considered nuisance bugs by their sheer number alone. Boxelder bugs seldom cause damage to plants or property, but they can stain fabric and carpets during more active times. Prevention, rather than elimination, is the best way to control boxelder bugs.

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Today in Lawrence: Boo-tiful day for trunk-or-treats, monthly book club

Today in Lawrence: It's a boo-tiful day for trunk-or-treats, monthly book club

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Today in Lawrence: Fall drops in; farmers' market finale; swing dance lessons

Today in Lawrence: Fall drops in; it's the Lawrence Farmers' Market's last Tuesday of the season; learn to swing dance at the Kansas Union.

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Today in Lawrence: Warm day ahead; lecture series at Lied; glaciers in Kansas

Today in Lawrence: Warm day ahead; lecture series at Lied discusses sexual violence; Audubon lecture covers glaciers in Kansas

A family affair: Foxy By Proxy pull together to stage annual Halloween Hextravaganza

Foxy By Proxy is a family, its members say — a kooky, demented clan of “weirdos.” Gathered around the fireplace at Frank’s North Star Tavern, the Lawrence-based burlesque troupe’s de facto headquarters, five of the group’s 16 members are discussing costumes for their upcoming Halloween Hexstravaganza. It all looks a bit like a strange family portrait.

Kansas City Connection: Halloween happenings in KC

Halloween is on a Friday this year, something that hasn’t happened since 2008 and 2003 — years in which I threw parties where my guests and I consumed cigarettes, pumpkin ales and peanut butter cups until we probably looked like prematurely rotted jack-o’-lanterns. I’m a more relaxed, health-conscious family man these days, so this column will include a mix of family events as well as a few slightly more debaucherous options.

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Today in Lawrence: Warm weather and fall activities

Today in Lawrence: Don't let the warm weather fool you! There are several Halloween-related activities (and music and charity events) this weekend!

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Today in Lawrence: Morning rain and afternoon sun; nursing and nomads; heart of emotions

Today in Lawrence: Morning rain and afternoon sun; presentation talks about nursing and nomads; the heart of emotions

Garden Variety: Easy-to-grow sweet potatoes

Lawrence area educators, farmers and businesses are teaming up to celebrate a vegetable worthy of a month-long party: the sweet potato.

Style Scout: Graham Hosking

Describe your style: I like to be colorful and I don’t care what anyone thinks. Also, I don’t usually match! I just do whatever.

Style Scout: Amy Santoferraro

Describe your style: My friends have noted that I look like a playground.