Sarah Benson

Lead Reporter,

Recent Stories

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Coal-fired culture war

Proposed power plants bring out the worst in Kansas culture clash

Politics and culture have a way of driving a wedge between Lawrence and the rest of the state.

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Heads above water

Artists cope with rising casualty rate of Lawrence galleries

It wasn't long ago that Lawrence officially declared itself "City of the Arts"-1999 to be exact. Just five years after downtown lightposts first trumpeted the new slogan, the commercial core of Lawrence's art scene began to lose galleries one by one.

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Behind the music

How Robert Moore came to be the most inspired DJ within the reach of 89.3 FM's airwaves

Robert Moore is putting the punk into public radio. As a music DJ on 89.3 FM, Moore has the methodical urgency of a news anchor and the mellow on-air presence of a late-night jazz announcer.

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Mind game

In an 'over-stimulated' society, the world's oldest game still captures imaginations

In the midst of today's video game technological fanaticism, Lawrence chess players stand in sharp contrast. Afterall, their fanaticism is focused on a game that's pretty much unchanged after some 15 centuries.

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The other crimson and blue

A look inside KU's College Republicans as they join the final campaigns push in a tough mid-term election

It's rush hour on a chilly Thursday evening, just a few days before mid-term elections. At the busy intersection of 23rd and Iowa, cars line up to head back toward wherever home is.

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Bad rap

Following murder of Lawrence rapper, local artists speak out on the cultural stereotype equating rap with violence

Anthony Vital's bullet-riddled body was recently found by police in a field outside Lawrence. At first, no details were released. Police didn't announce the cause of death until three days into the investigation. But that didn't stop some locals, armed with deep-seated stereotypes, from forming their own conclusions.

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Project: Recycled Runway

Local designers and boutique owners take advantage of disposable culture to create eco-friendly fashions

Andy Warhol once said he'd rather hang a dress on the wall than a painting. Loni Hosking, local fashion designer and owner of Ecoboutiquo, sees fashion as an art form, too. But she'd be damned if her masterpieces weren't worn.

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Les femmes de spin

Lawrence's lone DJ dames Dolly Surprise hold it down for more than just the ladies

By day, Megan Dudley is a typical 20-something Lawrence townie. She bakes bread at Wheatfields, shops thrift stores and hits the floor at local dance nights whenever she can.

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Stranger than fiction

Lawrence playwright interprets bizarre disappearance of Lawrence-area teen that's still unsolved after 18 years

Randy Leach was a "happy-go-lucky, all-American, clean cut, normal boy," says his mom choking back tears. Talking to a Lawrence Journal-World reporter in 1989, a year after her 17-year-old son disappeared without a trace, Alberta Leach can't believe not a single clue had been found yet. Nobody seems to know a thing about what happened in Linwood - a town 13 miles northeast of Lawrence, pop. 377.

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Fighting Fire

KU students and Lawrence bands come together to benefit a country that's falling apart

If you don't know where Darfur is, chances are you will soon. The long-burning genocide in Darfur, the western region of Sudan, has recently begun to capture as much media attention as the Middle East and the international war on terror.

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