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Acquired

The city of Salem began regular, voluntary water sample testing at several locations in early May, when algae blooms started appearing in Detroit Lake.

The lake, which flows downstream and into the city's drinking water intake, was free of toxins. That was until test samples taken last week and received Saturday revealed low levels of cyanotoxins caused by the blooms.

Portland parents have filed a federal lawsuit against Oregon’s largest school district over its school for highly gifted students. Portland Public Schools has scheduled a vote on the ACCESS Academy's future location for Wednesday.

PPS is removing ACCESS Academy from its home in Northeast Portland as part of a broader change from K-8 schools to elementary and middle schools. ACCESS is at the Rose City Park school building, which is slated to become a neighborhood elementary school this fall under the reconfiguration plans for Northeast Portland.

A note to listeners and readers: A person in this story uses an offensive word for Japanese people.

Seventy-five years ago, Japan and the United States were locked in one of the bloodiest battles fought on American soil: the Battle of Attu.

Army veteran Allan Serroll served on Attu Island, which sits at the westernmost end of the Aleutian Islands — closer to Japan than Seattle.

Serroll is now 102. But he’s still haunted by the experience of staring down young men like himself.

HeavyTable.com editor recently took his crew on a food crawl down East Lake Street. Here's what they found.

Copyright 2018 MPR News. To see more, visit MPR News.

Gov. Mark Dayton on Wednesday vetoed a bill that would have eliminated Minnesota's sulfate standard aimed at protecting wild rice.

Copyright 2018 MPR News. To see more, visit MPR News.

Amtrak says it has still found no evidence of criminal intent in the case of a gay Portland State University student found unconscious and suffering from life-threatening injuries near train tracks in Northern California, suggesting instead that 22-year-old Aaron Salazar may have attempted suicide.

“Individuals we spoke to noted their interactions with Mr. Salazar, during which he shared with them a number of life concerns and challenges he was having," said Amtrak Police Chief Neil Trugman at a press conference Tuesday.

Amy Hakanson plucked her violin on a park bench in downtown Portland.

“I’m trying to decide what to play," Hakanson said.

Hakanson, 24, recently withdrew from Marylhurst University — she thought it would be temporary. Now with the private college's closure, she can't go back.

The region retains two daily newspapers: One, a media darling owned by a Minnesota billionaire who has invested in the paper; the other, owned by a New York hedge fund that industry-watchers contend is more interested in reaping profit than retaining reporters.

    

    

We hear from wildlife biologist Vanessa Blackstone on the recent spotting of the endangered Snowy Plover. The bird was seen at Fort Stevens State Park for the first time since the 1980s and Blackstone says its population numbers are on the rise.

    

Organizers of Super Bowl 52 say the game and its visitors netted the region $370 million in local spending during the run up to the Feb. 4 game in Minneapolis between the Eagles and Patriots.

Copyright 2018 MPR News. To see more, visit MPR News.

Vijay Iyer and Teju Cole have done versions of their piece "Blind Spot" before, but it's never the same.

Copyright 2018 MPR News. To see more, visit MPR News.

Delivering food is now a dangerous job in Venezuela

May 29, 2018

After 10 hours on the road from the central Venezuelan plains, Gregorio Pinanco reaches the capital, Caracas. It’s 6 a.m., but Pinanco says it’s already been a terrible day. The road was blocked and people tried to loot his truck. He rubs the fatigue from his eyes and starts unloading his precious cargo — 6,000 pounds of white Guayanés cheese.

#TOL10: What Is The Purpose Of Government?

May 29, 2018

In honor of the last 10 years on the air, "Think Out Loud" is looking at some of the biggest issues likely to face Oregon in the next 10 years. For this show, we head to Josephine County to discuss is the tension between state, local and federal control of government.

UPDATE (May 29, 4:33 p.m. PT) — Greg Porter, the suspect in last week's hit-and-run at Portland State University, was arraigned on 12 counts Tuesday afternoon in Multnomah County District Court.

In addition to three counts of attempted murder and first-degree assault, Porter, 61, also faces multiple charges of reckless driving and failure to perform the duties of a driver to injured persons.

In court Tuesday, he appeared behind thick glass. He asked questions of the public defender and seemed to follow the proceedings.

Fencing provides Muslim high school girls at a STEM school in Rochester the chance to "use your mind and your body as a chess piece."

Copyright 2018 MPR News. To see more, visit MPR News.

We discuss the latest regional business news with Suzanne Stevens, editor of the Portland Business Journal.

We talk with Nadya Okamoto, who founded a nonprofit organization as a Portland high school student. Period distributes menstrual products to women experiencing homelessness. We hear from Okamoto about how her work has evolved into the policy world and how she balances Period with her course load at Harvard.

A fire late Sunday night damaged a multi-story building and took firefighters until Monday morning to knock down the blaze.

Copyright 2018 MPR News. To see more, visit MPR News.

It wasn’t even close. 

Right up until the day of the vote last Friday, most observers thought the outcome of Ireland’s national referendum on abortion was too close to call. In the end, the "yes" side — voting to repeal Ireland’s Eighth Amendment, which declared the equal right to life for both the mother and the unborn — won by a landslide. 

“A historic day for Ireland,” is how Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar characterized the results, which began to be clear on Friday night, even before the official count was announced. 

Eight hundred American flags lined the coiled brick path that snakes up the hillside at the Oregon Vietnam Veteran's Memorial. A seemingly endless list of names — those who died serving their country during the war — rang out over loudspeakers, like a steady chant.

On this Memorial Day, many guests at the annual remembrance said they came to honor lives lost in combat. Others came to say thank you.

Some veterans stood stone-faced. Other sat on their walkers or in lawn chairs and smoked cigarettes. There were handshakes and hugs, tears and laughter. 

Two years ago, during Ramadan, Saagar Shaikh and Shaan Baig were in a car hanging with friends when they went down the rabbit hole of revisiting all of their favorite ‘90s Bollywood songs. It started with “Oh Oh Jane Jaana,” the 1998 classic from the film "Pyar Kiya Toh Darna Kya," which Shaikh credits with getting him into Bollywood in the first place.

Then they moved onto Baig’s favorites, all the old-school Shah Rukh Khan hits. Soon, they were reminiscing about how they used to try to memorize the dance moves when they watched the movies.

When journalist and historian Laura Lo Forti moved to Portland from New York in 2014, she wanted to discover more about the new city she'd call home.

What she found was the history of Vanport.

In 2016, Lo Forti teamed up with several creators in the area to launch the Vanport Mosaic Festival. It started as a four-day tribute to the city and its people.

"It was this idea of communities honoring each other, and doing it for the community, with the community," she said.

At least three landslides — one that spanned somewhere between 75 to 100 feet — have prompted closures along Oregon Route 350 between Joseph and Imnaha in Eastern Oregon Saturday morning. Drivers are being asked to take an alternate route.

The landslides were caused by rainfall and loose soil along the highway. It's even led to undercutting, or water flow that erodes supporting soil underneath a highway structure.

"So basically the potential of collapse exists," said Peter Murphy, a public information officer with the Oregon Department of Transportation.

Oregon Gold Star Father Remembers His Daughter

May 26, 2018

Memorial Day is a holiday felt most acutely by Gold Star families across the country. They’re the relatives of men and women who have been killed in action.

Linda and Steve Ellis of Beavercreek, Oregon, are among those families. Their daughter Jessica joined the U.S. Army as a medic in the 101st Airborne Division during the Iraq War. She was killed 10 years ago during her second tour in Iraq.

A new tower — or two, or three — could be coming to Portland’s New Chinatown-Japantown historic district.

In an effort to spur development in the struggling commercial district, Portland City Council voted Thursday to give developers the option of building taller buildings there.

The vote divided the City Council, with Mayor Ted Wheeler, Commissioners Dan Saltzman and Chloe Eudaly arguing that development would give the neighborhood a much-needed boost, while Commissioner Amanda Fritz argued it would effectively destroy it.

There's a mural where there once wasn't at the site of the deadly MAX train stabbing that happened one year ago Saturday.

That's when the Hollywood Transit Center became the site of a hate crime that drew national attention and where, now, a mural with symbols of grieving and healing are deemed necessary.

Viet Thanh Nguyen | Back Country Book Club | L.A. Salami | RACC

May 26, 2018

Maybe it's the Memorial Day weekend vibe. Maybe it's something in the water. But everyone we talked to this week arrived ready for deeper dives, long reads and in-depth conversation — the kind of thoughts that don't lend themselves to workday hustle. A Pulitzer Prize winner talks about walking in his mom and dad’s shoes. A London-based singer-songwriter slows down to look life with a Dylan-esque clarity. And three people with three extraordinary lives offer reading recommendations for those uninterrupted, stretches of time between the covers.

Sweden's new law on affirmative consent is hailed, but questions remain

May 26, 2018

As Sweden joins 10 other western European countries with a new consent law, there’s still much to figure out about what happens next.

The new law was passed Wednesday by an overwhelming majority (257 to 38, with 54 absentees) in the country’s parliament. Still, the two biggest opposition parties, The Moderate Party and the Sweden Democrats, are skeptical.

For a group of women's rights activists in Saudi Arabia, the first few days of the holy month of Ramadan have not brought forgiveness and compassion. On the contrary, they have been a time of silencing and intimidation.

The activists were taken away from their homes and placed in detention for campaigning against the driving ban and demanding an end to the male guardianship system in Saudi Arabia — the system that requires the consent of a male relative for major decisions such as getting a passport or traveling outside the Kingdom.

Members of Oregon's congressional delegation are asking Amtrak for a full report on an investigation into a gay Portland State University student whose unconscious body was found near train tracks in Northern California.

After years of wrangling, Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan have agreed to a controversial hydroelectric dam, Africa's biggest, being built on a major branch of the Nile River.

Under the deal, Ethiopia will give Egypt a share of the electricity from the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam project. Ethiopia also has promised the project will “not damage the interests of the other states” involved.

It’s a breakthrough in a region that has a history of tension among the countries that share on of the world’s great watersheds.

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