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   A heat wave is taking hold of the metro-area and reminding us that it's August in St. Louis.  

   The National Weather Services has issued a heat advisory for the St. Louis area from noon Tuesday until 7:00 Saturday evening.  

   Temperatures are expected to rise into the mid and upper 90's, with heat indices around 100 over the next several days.  There will be little relief at night, especially in the urban heat island of St. Louis.  

   At least a few schools are closing early today as a precaution.  They include the Legacy Christian Academy in Caseyville which will close at noon and St. John the Baptist in Villa Ridge which plans to close at 11:30.  Also, all schools in the Bunker Hill District are closing at 2 p.m. today.

   And the extreme heat is forcing some high school football teams to change game times this weekend. Hazelwood School District officials rescheduled games for Hazelwood Centrals and Hazelwood East. Both games have been moved from 1 PM to 10 AM. 

   Extra precaution is warranted, especially for those spending time outside.  OSHA recommends drinking extra water and taking frequent breaks in the shade or in air conditioning.  

   For information about cooling centers, call the United Way by dialing 2-1-1 from any land line phone.  Or call 1-800-427-4626. 

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Hi, I'm Mark Dorsey, General Manager of KTRS Radio.

It has come to the attention of KTRS management that a commercial running on KTRS Radio, voiced by Texas Governor Rick Perry, is asking Missouri business to move to Texas. When the order was placed, KTRS was under the assumption these commercials were going to promote tourism to Texas. Once we, the Management of KTRS realized these commercials were instead focused on stealing locally owned companies away from St Louis, we suspended airing these commercials immediately. We understand people have different viewpoints on public policy and we welcome that debate everyday on our airways. But as one of the few remaining locally owned radio stations in the country, we feel the need to stand strong with other small locally owned business and defend our region. Governor Rick Perry, Don't Mess with Missouri, and don't mess with St Louis.

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   ST. LOUIS - The Missouri Department of Transportation and its contractor, Fred Weber Inc., will shift traffic on both eastbound and westbound I-64 at Tower Grove next week, weather permitting.

   Starting Monday, crews will close up to two lanes on eastbound I-64 from Kingshighway to Tower Grove from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following morning.

   When the lanes reopen, drivers will have three through lanes on eastbound I-64, but those lanes will be split around a work zone. One right lane will be moved onto new pavement. The two left lanes will remain where they are, and crews will be working behind barriers in the middle of the interstate.

   On Tuesday, crews will close up to two lanes on westbound I-64 from Tower Grove to Kingshighway from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following morning.

   When the lanes reopen, all three lanes will be shifted to the far right, as crews work in the center of the interstate.

   MoDOT will keep three through lanes open in each direction through the project weekdays from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. At least one lane in each direction will remain open evenings and weekends.

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   Missouri Transportation officials say they will apply another temporary surface to Poplar Street Bridge.  

   Deanna Venker, MoDOT's area engineer for the city told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch Tuesday that the paving work is expected to take two weekends and will begin after Labor Day.

   Even with the lane restrictions that come along with paving projects, the announcement should be good news for drivers, who've suffered all summer with pavement that's so bad, the metal surface of the bridge deck is exposed in several spots.  Venker says the exposed metal is a driving hazard because it becomes slippery in rain and snow. 

   Venker says the bridge surface is in such bad condition because crews have had trouble getting surface materials to stick to the metal box structure.  Officials hope the new pavement will last two to four years.  

   After the Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge opens, they expect to make more permanent repairs as part of a bridge widening project.  

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   Missouri Transportation officials are warning drivers to expect more nighttime lane and ramp restrictions along Interstate 70 near the Blanchette Bridge this week.

   MoDOT says drivers should expect at least one lane to be closed eastbound on the Blanchette Bridge from 8 p.m. through 5 a.m. each weeknight, as crews near completion of the north span rebuild.  

   Officials say additional lane and ramp closures are likely through next weekend in the final push to get both the eastbound and westbound bridges back to five lanes in each direction by Monday, August 26th.

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MoDOT is encouraging drivers to avoid I-70 at the Blanchette Bridge for the next three nights.

Crews are working to get westbound traffic switched over to the rehabilitated westbound span of the bridge. The change will force the closure of several lanes and ramps in the coming days. Motorists are advised to avoid I-70 and use Route 370 or Route 364 as alternates to traveling in this area.

Traffic should be switched to the new bridge span by Friday. 

A list of closures is below:

Tuesday, August 13, only one lane will be open on westbound I-70 and two lanes open eastbound I-70 at the Blanchette Bridge from 8 p.m. until 6 a.m. 

On Wednesday, August 14, only two lanes will be open westbound I-70 from Route 141/Earth City Expressway to the Blanchette Bridge from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.  All four ramps connecting westbound I-70 to Earth City Expressway will also be closed overnight.

On Thursday, August 15, only one lane will be open westbound I-70 at the Blanchette Bridge from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.  The goal is to have three lanes plus an exit only lane open on the westbound Blanchette Bridge by sometime Friday.

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   "Remarkable." That's what the Muny's executive producer Mike Isaacson had to say about attendance this season. It was up 9% over last yea, well over the 5% boost Muny executives had hped for, according to a report in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

   Including free tickets and community outreach, a total of over 383,000 people took in a show this year. That is the highest number in six years.

   The most popular shows, Mary Poppins and Shrek. It was the first appearance at the Muny for both of the family-friendly shows.

   And the Muny Opera isn't the only entertainment venue in Forest Park that's celebrating its popularity.  The St. Louis Zoo has broken another record.

   Officials say the zoo has nearly 53,000 members as of July 31. That is an 11% increase of the same time last year and represents a 20% increase over the past five years.

   The zoo was also happy to announce that they have 1,000 members who paid at least $1,000.

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   CAVE-IN-ROCK, Ill. (AP) — A yearly southern Illinois outdoor music festival featuring the Insane Clown Posse rap-metal group is getting underway in southern Illinois, and police say they'll be ready for the thousands of the band's fans.

   Illinois State Police say they're prepared along with Hardin County sheriff's authorities for the kickoff Wednesday near Cave-In-Rock of the latest Gathering of the Juggalos. Juggalos are fans of the band.

   State police say 10,000 people are expected to attend the event that runs through Sunday.

   The event in past years has resulted in unrest, including fans pelting reality TV actress Tila Tequila with stones, bottles and feces in 2010. Authorities said that event also involved one man stabbing another. In 2011, one of the attendees drowned while trying to swim in the Ohio River.

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MoDOT is asking for public input as they start the next phase of planning for Interstate 270 in North County.

They are hosting a meeting to gather information from people who travel on I-270. The meeting will be held Tuesday, July 30 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the Student Center on campus of the St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley, 3400 Pershall Rd.

The meeting is part of the 270 North Environmental Assessment, an ongoing study addressing congestion, safety, and aging infrastructure on 270.

 

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Due to an artist cancellation, the Fair Saint Louis Foundation has canceled its Friday, July 19 Celebrate St. Louis Summer Concert event. The Foundation received a call from the management of K’NAAN, the evening’s scheduled headliner, Tuesday night, informing that due to a personal family matter he would not be able to perform Friday. 

“Our thoughts are with K’NAAN,” said Bob Ciapciak, chairman of the 2013 Fair Saint Louis and Celebrate St. Louis Summer Concerts. “We worked quickly with several national headliners but given a very short timeframe were not able to secure another act. We look forward to the Saturday, July 20 concert with headliner NEEDTOBREATHE, which will be a great performance to wrap up our 2013 Celebrate St. Louis Summer Concerts.”

All activities on Friday are canceled, including opening acts, DJ Wood and Joia. 

On Saturday, July 20 gates to the outdoor venue at Soldiers Memorial will open at 6 p.m. Blackwater ’64 will perform at 6:15 p.m. followed by Roots of Rebellion at 7:15 p.m. before NEEDTOBREATHE takes the Budweiser Main Stage at 9 p.m. 

“It’s been a great July of free entertainment both under the Arch with Fair Saint Louis and at Soldiers Memorial last weekend, and we look forward to seeing a great St. Louis crowd for our final event of the summer this Saturday so come join the summer celebration,” said Ciapciak. 

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