VIDEO: Ride of the Century 2014 Takes STL Police by Surprise, No Arrests Reported

Categories: Bikes

This is what it looks like right before your wheelie goes very, very bad.
The Ride of the Century snuck up on St. Louis this year, which is no small feat for an annual event that normally draws thousands of sports biker riders to the region over Labor Day weekend. This year, however, the ride was organized in secret, by word of mouth and private social media messaging.

The result? Hundreds of riders gathered at a downtown gas station Saturday afternoon before tearing off along Interstate 64. As with past years, the large group of riders included a contingent of adrenaline junkies who weaved through highway traffic and pulled wheelies. So far, no arrests have been reported. Aside from a collision on Interstate 64, it appears the ride avoided serious accidents.

Founded in 2002 by a group south county stunt-riding enthusiasts calling themselves the Streetfighterz, the annual Ride of the Century has historically drawn panicked reactions from the public, police and media. In 2013, the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department arrested 47 riders and towed 58 motorcycles. Two riders died in accidents that weekend.

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Grand Jury Gets Until January to Decide on Michael Brown Shooting

Jessica Lussenhop
Michael Brown Sr., Lesley McSpadden and Pastor Carlton Lee in front of the Buzz Westfall Justice Center in Clayton Saturday.
A judge has granted an extension for the grand jury in charge of deciding whether Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson will be acquitted or charged with a crime.

The twelve jurors now have until January 7 to indict Wilson for shooting and killing unarmed teen Michael Brown in Ferguson on August 9 or to let him go, St. Louis County Judge Carolyn Whittington ruled.

Anthony Gray, an attorney for the Brown family, said he was "flabbergasted" when Daily RFT called and told him about the grand jury delay Monday night. He added that the trial depends on St. Louis County Prosecutor Bob McCulloch, who has been heavily criticized by black leaders for his handling of the case, to present "sufficient evidence."

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A Missouri Politician Is Suing to Stop His Daughters From Getting Birth Control

Representative Paul Weiland doesn't want his daughters taking these, so he's suing.
Missouri Representative Paul Weiland doesn't want his daughters taking birth control, and he's taking the Obama administration to court to stop the Affordable Care Act from giving it to them for free.

Weiland has three daughters -- two adults ages nineteen and eighteen, and a thirteen-year-old -- who are covered under the family health insurance plan. Weiland and his wife, Teresa, object to birth control for religious reasons, but thanks to Obamacare, their daughters can access birth control at no additional cost.

Now the Weilands are suing, telling the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to stop Obamacare from interfering with their parenting -- especially after the U.S. Supreme Court's recent ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby.

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Fewer Collisions Between Missouri Drivers, Deer This Year: Study

Categories: Animals

Riccardo Palazzani via Flickr
"Please don't hit me with your car!"
Good news, Missouri drivers. You are 8 percent less likely to collide your car into a deer than you were last year, according to a new report from auto insurer State Farm.

State Farm used its claims data and Federal Highway Administration state licensed driver counts to calculate the odds of a Missouri motorist striking a deer this coming year.

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Missouri Would Earn $23 Million Next Year By Legalizing Gay Marriage: Study

Categories: LGBT

Courtesy Mayor Slay's Office
Miranda Duschack and Mimo Davis are the first lesbian couple to be married in Missouri.
If same-sex marriage became legal in Missouri tomorrow, gay couples marrying in the state would bring in more than $36.6 million in three years, including $23 million in the first year alone, according to a new study.

The Williams Institute, a think-tank housed at the University of California-Los Angeles, looked to census data and patterns from states that have legalized gay marriage for clues about how Missouri would be affected financially.

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6 Times White and Black People in St. Louis County Had Opposite Opinions on Ferguson

Mitch Ryals
Davion Lorich asks police officers in Ferguson if they feel bad about what happened to Michael Brown.
A teenager is dead. A police officer pulled the trigger. There's not much more to the story of Michael Brown that white and black residents of St. Louis County agree on.

Remington Research Group, based in Missouri, polled more than 600 county residents on September 13 and 14 asking eight questions about the shooting and its aftermath. The poll puts in stark light the deep fracture between white and black reaction to the shooting, with the two groups often reporting opposite responses to the same questions.

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Unpaid Bills, Bad Press Keep KXFN 1380 "The X" Off the Air (For Now)

Categories: Bidness, Media

Lindsay Toler
The 590 AM studio.
Fans of KXFN 1380 AM "The X: Extreme Talk Radio" are likely wondering why the station disappeared from St. Louis airwaves. Unpaid bills are only part of the story.

For nearly three weeks, those seeking the station's brash lineup of shock-jock comedy, sex talk and music have instead encountered dead air and static where the 1380 channel should be. Although the shows are still (mostly) broadcasting over the web via KXFN's downloadable app, it's a particularly bad timing for the radio signal to go quiet: Two of station's hosts were recently nominated in the RFT Reader's Poll for the upcoming Best of St. Louis 2014 awards.

Operations manager Mike Calvin tells Daily RFT that old bills and repairs on KXFN's transmission tower knocked the broadcast off terrestrial radio, but he expects to have the debts squared and repairs completed by Tuesday. However, that doesn't solve the larger financial crisis facing KXFN and its sister station, KFNS 590 AM.

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Washington University: Top Safety School Pick for Wealthy Ivy League Rejects

Categories: Education

bluepoint951 via Flickr
Washington University.
Any high school student dreaming of college considers applying to a "safety school" to get a guaranteed acceptance just in case no other schools work out.

For some, community college is a helpful fall-back. For others, it's the nearby state school.

For those equipped with an ivy league budget but short on ivy league smarts, you can't get much better than Washington University in St. Louis.

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The Best (and Worst) High School Mascots in Missouri

Categories: Sports

georgebovard via Flickr
We're not sure what this mascot is supposed to be. A kidney? A jellybean?
We've had enough with the prototypical St. Louis question, "Where'd you go to high school?" After looking at the Missouri State High School Activities Association's list of every school mascot in the state, we think a much more entertaining question would be, "What was your high school mascot?"

Missouri has some doozies. Best-known are the Kewpies, the Hickman High School mascot named after a bald baby doll. There are the Joel E. Barber Middle School Buckskins, apparently named after clothing, and the West Plains High School Zizzers, named after nothing at all.

We looked through our list of favorite names and decided that they deserve some recognition. Drum roll please, as we announce the inaugural Riverfront Times Best Mascot Name Awards:

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St. Louis Post-Dispatch Asks Fleshlight for Photo Credit after 9/11 Tweet

Categories: Post-Dispatches

After noticing that Fleshlight, the company that sells handheld vaginas and assholes for your masterbational pleasure, tweeted a St. Louis Post-Dispatch picture in a September 11 tribute, the newspaper asked the company for a photo credit.

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