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Good, Bad & The Ugly

August 2, 2012
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The good

The Des Moines Art Center hosted the 2012 DSM 48 Hour Film Project Kick-off event last Friday, challenging movie-makers to create short films in just 48 hours. Over the weekend, 52 filmmaking teams descended upon the Des Moines Art Center to find out their films’ genres, required characters, props and lines of dialogue. After only 48 hours to write, film and edit, they rushed their films to the Fleur Cinema and Cafe on Sunday evening. This year, Des Moines was only one of five cities — joining Albuquerque, Denver, Detroit and Richmond — and one of 125 cities worldwide to be part of the first year association with the international 48 HFP and the cable network truTV. This competition involves some of the most creative people in the world, and truTV is looking to tap into that talent. Each 2012 Best of City winner will receive a chance to sign a $5,000 development deal to pitch ideas for a new series on truTV. The films were screened for the public at the Fleur Cinema on Aug. 1 and 2 where they were evaluated by a panel of judges, and the Best Films will screen on Aug. 16 at the Fleur. Tickets are available at or at the Fleur Cinema box office on the day of show.

For the third straight year, Waste Management is partnering with the Iowa State Fair to expand recycling opportunities. This year, organizers hope to set a new recycling record. Waste Management will service 300 recycling containers throughout the fairgrounds to make recycling more convenient, an increase of 100 containers over last year’s event. “We increased total recycling at the event by more than 350 percent in 2011, and our goal is to exceed that number in 2012 to keep even more waste out of Iowa’s landfills,” said Stephanie Regagnon, Waste Management spokesperson. In partnership with Keep Iowa Beautiful, Waste Management crews will remove the recycled material from the fairgrounds and transport it to a local recycling facility daily. Vendors and concession stands will also be green again this year. Cardboard will be collected twice a day from concession stands, and recycling containers will be placed near vendor storage areas.

The bad

A Chicago woman died after having an abortion at a Planned Parenthood facility. Tonya Reaves, 24, was pronounced dead on July 20 at the hospital just hours after going through an abortion, for which the pregnancy had reportedly advanced beyond the first trimester. According to World Magazine, an autopsy revealed that Reaves died from hemorrhage following the abortion, and her death has been ruled an accident. As a result, religious organizations such as Operation Rescue, a pro-life Christian activist group, are calling for President Obama to halt federal funding and personal support for Planned Parenthood. Regardless of where you stand on the abortion issue, it’s too bad a young woman had to die this way.

Wonder what type of bait they were using? While fishing in Little Wall Lake in Hamilton County last week, Bristal Waldera and her stepfather Lyle Coabaugh thought they had a big one on the line, but it ended up being a body. Coabaugh thought his bobber had fallen off, but when Waldera grabbed the line she saw a shoe in the water. When she picked up the shoe, they discovered a leg bone. They called police, and the partially-decomposed body was taken to the state medical examiner. Another team of divers is expected to search the rest of the lake using sonar. As of press time, it was still unknown who the leg belonged to.

The ugly

Reading, writing… and mold? That’s the case at Hillside Elementary in West Des Moines as mold was discovered while the windows were being replaced. Now officials are searching for a temporary home for nearly 600 students. The leaks have caused mold at the school two different times since 2009, but in both incidents the air was tested and found to be clean. Students and staff will be relocated for the first eight weeks of school as workers complete the window replacement project. CV

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