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mental health
12:43 pm
Mon June 11, 2012

Learning 'mental' first aid, before the next crisis

There's no first aid kit for mental health, but there are strategies.
renjith krishnan freedigitalphotos.net

In the wake of the recent murder spree at Café Racer, there have been questions about how to get help for someone whose mental health is deteriorating. Social service agencies are filling part of the gap, by training volunteers to provide what they call "mental health first aid."

The idea comes by comparison to CPR – a type of first aid any of us can learn. The mental health version is a 12-hour course for anyone who wants to be better equipped to help someone in a mental health crisis.

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Tech news
12:09 pm
Mon June 11, 2012

Apple integrates Facebook into iPhone software

SAN FRANCISCO — Fresh off a disappointing initial public offering, Facebook is getting a big boost from Apple, which is building the social network deep into its iPhone and iPad software.

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Environment
5:00 am
Mon June 11, 2012

Greenpeace vs. Shell: Duelling vessels head for Arctic from Seattle

Greenpeace scientists will deploy research submarines to explore two of Shell’s planned Arctic drilling sites, the Beaufort and Chukchi seas.
Lindsay Lowe KPLU

Seattle’s Elliott Bay is the epicenter of a global energy fight.

The Shell Oil Company has two rigs docked here, the Kulluk and the Noble Discoverer. Also in Elliott Bay is the Greenpeace vessel, Esperanza.

As soon as the ice clears, Shell’s rigs will head out for the Arctic. They’ll be the first to conduct exploratory drilling there in more than two decades. Greenpeace plans to shadow them, using submarines.

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Artscape
4:30 am
Mon June 11, 2012

LeMay Car Museum displays history and art of autos

Hood ornament at the new LeMay Car Museum in Tacoma.
Katherine Banwell KPLU

The new LeMay Car Museum in Tacoma is a dream come true for car lovers. But it’s also worth a visit if you’re into art. The color and shape of the vehicles is a feast for the eyes, and there’s art history too, if you consider such things as hood ornaments and how they’ve changed over time.

Listen to this week’s Artscape by clicking the listen button above to get the full picture.

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Jazz Northwest
1:00 pm
Sun June 10, 2012

Jazz Northwest for June 10, 2012

Eddie Creed (1935-2012)

Pianist Eddie Creed passed on April 19 at the age of 77, and he'll be remembered on the next edition of Jazz Northwest (6/10) with a performance recorded by Jim Wilke in 1971 at The Jazz Gallery.   Eddie was one of the most active jazz pianists from the 60s through the 80s in Seattle.  There will be a memorial concert at The New Orleans on Sunday June 10 from 4 to 8 pm .

Also on this week's Jazz Northwest: The new CD by Human Spirit, Bill Anschell's Earshot Award-winning CD "Figments" and more, including news about upcoming opportunities for great live jazz.

Point Defiance Zoo
8:12 am
Sun June 10, 2012

Photos: Zoo's live animal drama encourages kids to get outside

The awe-inspiring bald eagle quickly became a crowd favorite.
Mallory Kaniss KPLU

Point Defiance Zoo’s latest outdoor theater show – “Captain Adventure vs. Dr. Do-Nothing: The Quest to Get Outside!” – is a live animal show that follows the journey of a superheroine and her trusty superdog sidekick as they defeat their nemesis, Dr. Do-Nothing.

The show features a variety of native and exotic animals and the chance for audience members to participate. KPLU’s multimedia intern Mallory Kaniss attended one of the shows and brought back the photo gallery below. (For larger images and to view captions or if your device doesn't support Flash, check out the show on our Flickr page.)

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Japanese Tsunami Debris
1:07 pm
Fri June 8, 2012

Japanese dock suddenly makes tsunami debris threat real

In this photo provided by the Oregon Park and Recreations Department, an unidentified worker burns off debris from the Japanese dock float on Thursday.

When a massive concrete and metal dock – 66 feet long, seven feet tall, 19 feet wide and covered in alien species – hit an Oregon beach this week, the threat to the Northwest’s economy and environment from millions of tons of Japanese tsunami debris suddenly became more real.

Even with the haunting appearance of a Japanese ship floating off the coast of Alaska, reports of what we might expect to hit our coastlines centered mostly on plastics, soccer balls and even some human remains in running shoes – all of which carried more curiosity than alarm.

But then the dock just showed up on the beach one morning and now the threat of ships colliding with significant tsunami debris, and the invasive species that can hitch a ride from the coast of Japan on them, has officials significantly worried.

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Weather with Cliff Mass
8:58 am
Fri June 8, 2012

Forecast: A break from rain by Sunday; coastline is the place for sun

Above is a view of the development of coastal clouds as seen from the polar-orbiting MODIS satellite looking along the central Washington coast. You can see that the coastline is free of clouds.
Cliff Mass

The forecast is calling for a few rain showers to move through the Puget Sound region, no surprise there. But with the strong sun heating the ground and with the clouds aloft, we could also get a weak thunderstorm or two, said KPLU’s weather expert Cliff Mass.

Then, it’s better weather through the weekend. By Sunday, we’ll see the end of showers, though there will still be some clouds aloft and temperatures in the mid-60s. Monday is the best of the set with temperatures reaching into the 70s.

Often, Mass advises sun-seekers to head east across the mountains, but in this week's conversation he offered another option. He said the coast would be a great place for some sun and seeing the transit of Venus.

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I Wonder Why ... ?
6:00 am
Fri June 8, 2012

Why are we such gear freaks in the NW?

Museum of History & Industry and Charla Bear

In the Pacific Northwest, we know that yoga pants, polar fleece and hiking shoes are great for grocery shopping. But when we head into the great outdoors, we love to pile on the high-tech gear.

Sure, the weather here demands a certain level of protection from the elements. But what is it that compels people in the Pacific Northwest to want every piece of equipment out there?

Read more on I Wonder Why ... ?

Sports with Art Thiel
9:00 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Wrongly accused of rape, Seahawks give Brian Banks shot at dream

Brian Banks works out at Seahawks headquarters in Renton Thursday. Cleared of rape charges just two weeks ago, Banks, once a high school star in Long Beach, Calif., gets to pursue his NFL dream.
Corky Trewin AP Photo

Brian Banks is not a bitter man. He has a right to be - after serving five years in prison and five on probation for a rape he didn't commit. But he says he wants to focus on his future.

Banks was cleared of the charges just two weeks ago, after his accuser recanted her story. Now, the Seahawks are giving the former high school football standout a shot at his dream. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel was at Seahawks headquarters Thursday, where Banks tried out for the team.

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fitness and nutrition
5:45 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Weight loss for a big prize - is it a gimmick?

Overall, so far in this weight-loss contest, 1,400 contestants in Pierce County lost more than 15,000 pounds.
Allan Foster Flickr

If you’ve ever thought about losing weight, it helps to have a prize, as 1,400 people in Pierce County can tell you. They’re in a contest that ends this week – similar to TV’s Biggest Loser reality show – with winners getting a $10,000 prize.

It may seem like a gimmick. But scientists say it has a solid foundation.

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Education
3:57 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

A teary farewell to Seattle schools chief

Interim Superintendent Susan Enfield dabs her eyes as her deputies bid her an emotional farewell.
Gabriel Spitzer KPLU

It wasn’t on the school board agenda, but members of Susan Enfield’s cabinet paid her a surprise tribute during her final school board meeting Wednesday. Enfield is leaving Seattle Public Schools this month after 16 months as interim superintendent.

Enfield wiped away tears as a string of her deputies praised her, beginning with Enfield’s number-two, Interim Deputy Superintendent Bob Boesche.

“So my word is motivator. There wasn’t a meeting ever, an encounter ever with you, where I didn’t walk out [feeling] motivated to do my best,” Boesche said.

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Education
1:51 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

UW Regents approve 16 percent tuition hike

The University of Washington Board of Regents has approved a 16 percent tuition increase for in-state undergraduate students.

With the increase, tuition and mandatory fees for the 2012-13 academic year will total $12,401. That's a $1,564 increase. The regents also voted Thursday to allocate 30 percent of the increased tuition dollars to financial aid.

Washington State Legislature
12:39 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

New Washington laws impact film, teachers, universities

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The film industry is getting incentives reinstated. Teachers are getting a new evaluation system. Universities are getting new rules on how to handle abuse allegations.

Dozens of new laws approved by Washington lawmakers earlier this year took effect on Thursday, though two of the most contentious proposals were not implemented as planned.

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Education
10:49 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Seattle school counselors slam district over cuts

David Bilides, head counselor at Washington Middle School, gave school board members an earful over cuts that have left many colleagues out of work and 37 elementary schools without a counselor.
Gabriel Spitzer KPLU

Seattle school counselors say they’re getting hit harder than ever by budget cuts, and a pack of them turned out at Wednesday’s school board meeting to protest the latest round of layoffs.

It all stems from a change three years ago to how Seattle Public Schools funds counselors in elementary schools. The district stopped paying for them as regular employees, and instead gave schools a choice: use your discretionary money, or let them go. Now, almost two thirds of elementary schools don’t have a counselor, and the district has sent pink slips to a dozen counselors at middle-and high schools.

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