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Freihofer’s Run for Women 5K returns in downtown Albany for its 43rd year

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Freihofer’s Run for Women 5K returns in downtown Albany for its 43rd year

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Over 1,200 women took to the streets of downtown Albany Saturday morning for the 43rd annual Freihofer’s Run for Women 5K.

“It is amazing, the energy is already super high,” Kristen Hisloo, the event’s director said.

Saturday marked 43 years for the race itself, and also one of its runners.

“When I first started, there was about 300 women, then it grew to almost 4,000. This year, it’s a little bit smaller because of COVID but still, what a great turnout,” said Denise Herman.

Herman has run each year since the race began back in 1979, becoming a large part of what’s become a growing tradition in the Capital Region.

“I’m in awe about that. When I first started in ‘79, because I have shirts that say ‘crossing the line in ‘79’, I would’ve never thought it would come to where it is today,” she explained.

While some continue a years-long tradition, others, including this year’s winner, running the race for the very first time.

“It’s been definitely a bucket list race for me. I heard about it so much when I was in high school growing up, so just to be here today is cool,” said Aisling Cuffe, the Massachusetts native who finished the race in 16 minutes and 34 seconds.

Whether its their first or 43rd race, everyone just glad to have these sorts of events back in person again. Especially as crowds of people gathered along the course to cheer runners on.

“We have all these people that have been really ready to get back and experience this fun event, so we’re excited,” Hisloo said.

This year’s event also took donations for three different local charities, with over $4,000 raised to this point.

The organizations include Girls on the Run Capital Region, Albany Medical Foundation and United Way of the Greater Capital Region.

A virtual run was also available for runners this year, with over 300 participating away from the course. Next year’s race is set to return to its normal June date, on June 4th.

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Markus Howard erupts for 31 points as Nuggets salvage preseason finale vs. Thunder

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Markus Howard erupts for 31 points as Nuggets salvage preseason finale vs. Thunder

With no rhyme and even less reason, the Nuggets’ final preseason game was a success in that they emerged fully healthy.

Outside of that, Thursday’s preseason finale against the Thunder offered an extended look at most of Denver’s deep reserves, including a scorching shooting display from sniper Markus Howard.

The bench mob authored a 113-107 overtime win as Nikola Jokic, Michael Porter Jr., Aaron Gordon, Monte Morris, P.J. Dozier and Jeff Green rested on the second night of the back-to-back.

Howard, the two-way gunner who paced the Nuggets with 31 points and nine 3-pointers, effectively ended the game after banking in a preposterous 3-pointer from the top of the arc with 30 seconds left in overtime.

With less than a week until the season opener, Nuggets coach Michael Malone concluded there was no reason to push his regulars, especially since the Thunder sat theirs.

A starting lineup of Facu Campazzo, Austin Rivers, Will Barton, Bol Bol and Zeke Nnaji held their own with little to play for other than Malone’s attention.

Denver’s 1-4 preseason record ultimately didn’t matter. Here’s what did.

Barton’s buckets: It’s not hard to imagine that Barton’s eyes lit up playing alongside the Nuggets’ typical reserves. With the offense flowing through him, and not Jokic or Porter as it will come opening night against the Suns, Barton didn’t hesitate. He had 14 points in the first half on 6-of-9 shooting from the field. Coming off a poor 3-point shooting night Wednesday, Barton also knocked down both of his 3-pointers in the first half. He stepped confidently into his outside shot and attacked the rim in transition. Having seen enough, Malone rested him in the second half.

Barton’s insisted he feels good after a healthy offseason and Thursday validated that claim. He looked shifty and spry on offense, while occasionally getting his hands in the passing lanes.

Nnaji’s promise: Zeke Nnaji’s Summer League and preseason struggles didn’t go unnoticed. The promising second-year forward appeared to be searching for his 3-point shot in addition to rushing his offense in general. What’s never left, though, was his defensive ability.

Despite his size, Nnaji has always had the skill to guard down a position or two. On Thursday, he got caught on an island against OKC guard Tre Mann, stuck with him on a drive and blocked his look. Most big men wouldn’t have had the agility to stay with a quicker guard.

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Planned school closure at Highwood Hills would again leave neighbors without a rec center

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Planned school closure at Highwood Hills would again leave neighbors without a rec center

If the Highwood Hills elementary school and rec center in St. Paul close next fall, Abdi Barkat expects he’ll move his family out of the neighborhood they’ve lived in for the last seven years.

“The only reason I’m here is for the school,” he said. “The school is very convenient to me, my family and to the neighborhood. They’re walking from school and they’re home, one minute.”

Highwood Hills is one of eight schools that St. Paul Public Schools administrators have proposed closing next fall, displacing 3,000 of the district’s roughly 35,000 students. The school board could vote on the plan next month.

The problem, district leaders say, is they have more buildings than they need for a district with declining enrollment due to charter school competition and low birth rates. They predict a consolidation will enable the remaining schools to offer a more well-rounded education, perhaps bringing families back to the district.

IDEAL SIZE

The district says the ideal size for an elementary school is 450. Highwood Hills has been around 250 in grades K-5 in recent years and just 175 students last fall — about half Somali, followed by Karen and Hispanic students.

Still, the plan to close Highwood Hills has ignited strong pushback.

“The community are very concerned that the school is closing,” said Omar Syed, who owns a coffee shop nearby. “It’s very sad.”

City Councilmember Jane Prince fought to reopen the rec center in 2019, 11 years after it was shuttered during the Great Recession. She said in an email to other city officials Wednesday that closing the building “will have a devastating impact on the East African community and families living in its surrounding high density properties on the East Side.”

Barkat lives in the Afton View apartments, which abut the school and rec center property. A second big apartment complex, Shamrock Court, also is a short walk away.

Having a school so close by is especially helpful to families that share a car or don’t have one at all, Barkat said. The next closest elementary school is Battle Creek, 1.5 miles away. Barkat doesn’t want his kids taking a bus to school because he doesn’t like how kids behave on the bus.

‘A VOID IN THE COMMUNITY’

Jackie Turner, chief operating officer for the school district, said she’s tried to engage the 400 families living in the nearby apartments, but too many still enroll in racially segregated charter schools that provide bus service.

“We do want to acknowledge that this would (leave) a void in that community in having some of that recreation, and it’s a conversation we need to sit down with the community, with the city, with our families in that area there and talk about how we come together and support this building, but trying to support it as a school has not worked out,” she told the school board Monday.

The 2019 reopening of the modest rec center gave the relatively isolated neighborhood a community gathering place. Besides safe opportunities for recreation after school and on weekends, the building serves as a food distribution center during summer and has hosted numerous events, including vaccine clinics during the coronavirus pandemic.

“It connects the community,” Barkat said. If the school closes, “we will lose all those connections.”

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Chuck Slocum: Thoughts on suicide awareness and prevention

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Chuck Slocum: Thoughts on suicide awareness and prevention

It is in the fall of the year — September was National Suicide Prevention Month — that I welcome an opportunity to further dedicate myself to this important cause.

It was the day before my 50th birthday — Feb. 26, 1997 — that I discovered my 20-year-old-son Judson’s lifeless body as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot blast.

Weeks later I painstakingly wrote a public commentary for the Pioneer Press called “The Valley” detailing the life and death of my beloved Judson.

I wrote about his young life, including the 4-year-old rescuing a flight-incapacitated duck we found in our backyard. After some days for recovery, the two of us carefully transported the duck to Como Lake, allowing the young quacker to paddle out and join a raft of others preparing to fly southward.

Judson grew into a sensitive, polite person; his friends appreciated his quiet charm that so often inspired,  encouraged and humored them.

By junior high, we began to see in him what we now know as clinical depression, though it was not formally diagnosed.  Judd did have a counseling psychologist but he rejected deep therapy. The teen continued to struggle to meet deadlines and suffered from sleep irregularities. Nearly everything became difficult for him.

But Judd eventually rebounded and, after losing a year, he graduated from Hopkins High School in the top 10% of his class.  He was accepted at Purdue University.

Abruptly, however, after six months he dropped out of college in Indiana to return to Minnesota, where he was admitted to the U of M.

In the weekend where his world ended, Judd attended at Spike Lee lecture, a dance and had planned to attend the play “Great Expectations” and join our family for an annual dinner at Murray’s.

Sadly, I found my son in the early evening some hours after his death, slumped in a chair.

More than 700 family and friends attended his funeral at the local Presbyterian Church. The high school choir of which he had been a member sang a Mozart number. Three of his best friends provided powerful, reflective comments.

It was at that time that I joined the nearly 300,000 suicide “survivors” in America who must carry on each year without their loved ones.

The Center for Disease Control tracks the realities of suicide — 10th leading cause of death for all ages (nearly 50,000 per year). That is one suicide every 11 minutes, or 130 Americans dying every day. In contrast, homicide ranks as the 16th highest cause of death in our nation.

The highest suicide rates are among whites, American Indians and Alaska Natives.  Globally, about one in four suicide attempts results in death; that rate is far lower in the U.S., about one in 25 attempts.

Depression, a brain disease, is most often a part of the human condition by those who take their own lives. Some one in four Americans ages 18 and above experience depression every year; about half get treatment. Up to 90% of those Americans who get treatment are successful with a combination of drugs and therapy.

Of concern are active and retired veterans. The VA’s Office of Mental Health and Suicide Prevention tracks suicides of our men and women in the armed services. Though preventative measures have been undertaken, there is an average of 20 suicides a day in one recent VA analysis.

Nearly 800 Minnesotans die by suicide annually, averaging 14 people per 100,000 residents, on a par with the national numbers.

Minnesota’s suicide rate since the death of my own son has been on a slow, steady rise for over two decades.

Suicide rates for men have increased in the metro area; overall, suicides are significantly higher outside the Twin Cities, where it’s often more difficult for people to access mental health services.

Suicide is one of those issues that most people do not think about until they are tragically thrust into doing so, as I was. I have learned over the years that experiencing “grief bursts” is common among survivors. After a suicide, most of us begin a search for some kind of understanding of the death of our loved one, even though we know these issues may be impossible to determine.

According to the executive director of the Minnesota-based Suicide Awareness/Voices of Education (SAVE), Dan Reidenberg, “Suicide is preventable in the vast majority of cases. It is a treatable brain disease, and newly developed treatments work.”

Each of us must thoughtfully consider what we can do to help those who most need it to climb from the valley of despair into the sunshine of healthy lives lived purposefully.

Chuck Slocum is president of The Williston Group, a Minnetonka based management consulting firm.  His e-mail is [email protected]

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Bill Clinton hospitalized in California, spokesperson says

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Bill Clinton hospitalized in California, spokesperson says

FILE – In this Jan. 27, 2021, file photo, former President Bill Clinton speaks during funeral services for Henry “Hank” Aaron, at Friendship Baptist Church in Atlanta. (Kevin D. Liles/Atlanta Braves via AP, Pool, File)

(NEXSTAR) – Former President Bill Clinton was hospitalized in Southern California for a non-COVID related issue, spokesman Angel Ureña said in a statement Thursday.

Clinton is dealing with an infection but is “on the mend” and “in good spirits” according to Ureña.

He is currently undergoing treatment at the University of California Irvine Medical Center.

Ureña added that Clinton “is incredibly thankful to the doctors, nurses, and staff providing him with excellent care.”

The 42nd president’s spokesman added the following joint statement from the medical center:

President Clinton was taken to UC Irvine Medical Center and diagnosed with an infection. He was admitted to the hospital for close monitoring and administered IV antibiotics and fluids. He remains at the hospital for continuous monitoring. After two days of treatment, his white blood cell count is trending down and he is responding to antibiotics well. The California-based medical team has been in constant communication with the President’s New York-based medical team, including his cardiologist. We hope to have him go home soon.

Dr. Alpesh Amin and Dr. Lisa Bardack

In the years since Clinton left the White House in 2001, the former president has faced health scares. In 2004, he underwent quadruple bypass surgery after experiencing prolonged chest pains and shortness of breath. He returned to the hospital for surgery for a partially collapsed lung in 2005, and in 2010 had a pair of stents implanted in a coronary artery.

He responded by embracing a largely vegan diet that saw him lose weight and report improved health.

He repeatedly returned to the stump, campaigning for Democratic candidates, mostly notably his wife, Hillary, during her failed 2008 bid for the presidential nomination. And in 2016, as his wife sought the White House as the Democratic nominee, Clinton — by then a grandfather and nearing 70 — returned to the campaign trail.

The UCI Medical Center is in Orange County, about 40 miles (64 km) southeast of Los Angeles. It wasn’t immediately clear why Clinton was in Southern California.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Volunteers to visit College Hill neighborhood for Operation Clean Sweep

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Volunteers to visit College Hill neighborhood for Operation Clean Sweep

ST. LOUIS – More than a thousand volunteers are going to work this weekend in the College Hill neighborhood to remove vacant structures and overgrown vegetation.

The Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis is partnering with the Regional Business Council and the City of St. Louis for Operation Clean Sweep.

It’s considered one of the largest clean-up efforts in the city.

“We know that we are a family that’s filled with beautiful people and it is my goal to rebuild north St. Louis up by any means necessary,” said Alderman John Collins-Muhammad.

Congresswoman Cori Bush will also roll up her sleeves to help revitalize parts of north St. Louis while bringing hope and spirit to what organizers call at-risk neighborhoods

“We don’t move without volunteers and everyone coming together to make sure it’s beautiful,” Bush said.

Clean Sweep is a neighborhood stabilization effort targeting at-risk neighborhoods with strong redevelopment potential and community engagement.

“We are so excited as to what it has come to and what the future holds for Clean Sweep,” said James Clark, vice president of Urban League’s Division of Public Safety.

So far this year, volunteers have demolished more than 15 derelict and abandoned properties, clean and removed debris from over 10 miles of alleys and streets, and cleared more than 20 vacant lots.

If you want to help, volunteers can register Saturday, Oct. 16 starting at 8:30 a.m.

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Bond bill tied to potential St. Louis Target store heads to aldermen Friday

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Bond bill tied to potential St. Louis Target store heads to aldermen Friday

ST. LOUIS- The St. Louis Board of Aldermen will hear the first reading of a bill Friday that would issue bonds for a mixed-use residential/retail project in Midtown that could include a Target store along with nearly 200 apartments.

Pier Property Group is the developer behind the Steelcote Gratiot LLC project. The proposed $60 million bonds would be used for a sales and use tax exemption on construction materials. Alderwoman Marlene Davis, the bill’s sponsor, has already introduced another bill that would form a Community Improvement District for the project.

Lease revenues, not city tax dollars would be used to pay off the bonds.

Alderwoman Davis and a representative for Pier Property Group have both declined comment.

A Target spokesperson was not ready to confirm the company’s involvement in the project.

“We are pursuing the opportunity to reach guests in the St. Louis Midtown neighborhood, but at this time, we’re not at a point where we can share any new store plans,” a representative told FOX2 Thursday afternoon.

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Bill Clinton in hospital for non-COVID-related infection

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Bill Clinton in hospital for non-COVID-related infection

WASHINGTON — Former President Bill Clinton is in a hospital in California being treated for a non-COVID-related infection, a spokesman said Thursday night.

Spokesman Angel Ureña said Clinton was admitted to the University of California Irvine Medical Center on Tuesday evening.

Ureña said Clinton “is on the mend, in good spirits and is incredibly thankful to the doctors, nurses, and staff providing him with excellent care.”

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Interstate 225 southbound closed at 6th Avenue by a shooting

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CSU Pueblo student arrested after weapons, ammo found inside truck, apartment

Southbound Interstate 225 is closed at 6th Avenue as police investigate a shooting.

The shooting happened at about 6:25 p.m. in the area 2nd Avenue, police said. A person in one vehicle shot at another vehicle, grazing the head of a 19-year-old man. The victim was taken to a local hospital to be treated for “minor” injuries.

Police are investigating the shooting as a possible road rage incident. No suspect information was released on Thursday night.

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Kiszla: Disgrace of Jon Gruden reminds us why Broncos Country should appreciate Vic Fangio more

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Kiszla: Disgrace of Jon Gruden reminds us why Broncos Country should appreciate Vic Fangio more

Could every NFL fan who bet Jon Gruden would lose his job before Vic Fangio kindly raise your hand?

Gruden owns a Super Bowl ring and 102 more regular-season victories than Fangio, but in my book, that’s not the most crucial difference between these two football coaches.

Uncle Vic is good people. Coach Chucky? Not so much.

I would play for Fangio in a heartbeat. Gruden revealed the racist, homophobic and misogynistic feelings in his heart during a disturbing series of emails unearthed by The New York Times and Wall Street Journal that led to his resignation as coach of the Las Vegas Raiders.

“Relationships are important in this business, more so now more than ever,” Fangio said Thursday, when I asked him about the importance of having the trust of players in Denver’s locker room, especially in the face of adversity that a two-game losing streak can bring.

But if we have learned anything during this sad week for the NFL, it’s that virtue often has virtually no correlation with victory.

In a sport where big, self-important media burnish the legends of big stars until they are as shiny as the Vince Lombardi Trophy, Fangio is a working-class grunt in the league’s coaching fraternity compared to Gruden. Coach Chucky led Tampa Bay to a championship at age 39, served as ESPN’s lead commentator on Monday Night Football for a decade and signed a 10-year, $100 million contract to coach the Raiders in 2018.

Gruden won our respect. What fools we all were. In the crass language of his emails, it’s apparent Gruden disrespected everybody from NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith to commissioner Roger Goodell, while taking offense to the inclusion of either gay players or female referees in pro football.

If those ugly revelations don’t make you way angrier than Colin Kaepernick silently protesting racial injustice during the national anthem, maybe you should not only take a hard look in the mirror but at what prejudice might fester in your heart.

“I just think there’s no place in the world, let alone our league, for the opinions that were expressed and especially the words used to express those opinions,” said Fangio, when commenting earlier this week on Gruden’s spite-filled potty mouth. “Myself and my organization are definitely against that. It was a bad situation.”

The league needs more good men like Fangio and fewer of the attitudes born under the dark under-belly of the NFL’s good-old boy network.

But now Broncomaniacs have Raiders Week without Coach Chucky to boo. That’s OK, because the NFL works in mysterious ways. Isn’t it a strange coincidence that Sunday will be the time when the Broncos finally honor coach Mike Shanahan with a spot in the Ring of Fame?

Nobody disliked the Raiders more than Shanny, whose beef with the late Al Davis was so bloody rich he once ordered a San Francisco quarterback to throw a football at the owner’s head during warm-ups prior to a game. And far better, at least as far as Broncos Country is concerned: Shanahan’s record during his tenure in Denver against the dreaded Rai-duhs was 21-7.

With the Mastermind in the house, I would strongly advise Uncle Vic to beat the dysfunctional Raiders in utter disarray. Lose three in a row after a 3-0 start? Perish the thought. That would be the definition of free fall.

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St. Louis County wins court round on mask mandate

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St. Louis County wins court round on mask mandate

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo–A St. Louis County judge has handed County Executive Sam Page a victory in the continuing legal battle with Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt over the county’s latest mask mandate.

Thursday afternoon, Judge Ellen Ribaudo’s ruling dissolved an earlier preliminary injunction issued against a previous mask mandate which was ultimately rejected by the St. Louis County Council over the summer. Under a new mandate that took effect in late September, masks are required to be worn by anyone five years or older indoors and on public transportation, regardless of vaccination status.

Schmitt’s office argued that the latest mandate flew in the face of the temporary injunction granted over the earlier one. While a hearing to make the temporary injunction permanent has now been canceled, a hearing scheduled for Monday morning to force St. Louis County to produce background and data to support the need for the latest mask mandate is still planned.

“Since the law barring the second mask mandate is clear, the Court has asked us to file an amended petition commensurate with what we know the law is, that the County’s second mask mandate is illegal since they’re unable to issue a second mask mandate for 180 days, and we will prevail,” Chris Nuelle, a spokesman for Schmitt said in a statement to FOX2 Thursday night. “This is purely a power grab by the County Executive, and we will continue our fight for the people of St. Louis County.”

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