Elaine Taylor

5:30 News Co-host / Reporter

After graduating with a B.S. in Anthropology from the University of Utah, Elaine developed a love of radio while working long hours in remote parts of Utah as an archaeological field technician. She eventually started interning for the radio show Science Questions and fell completely in love with the medium. Elaine is currently taking classes at Utah State University in preparation for medical school applications. She is a host of UPR’s 5:30 Newscast and a science writer for the Utah Agricultural Experiment Station. Elaine hopes to bring her experiences living abroad in Turkey and Austria into her work.

woman holds food
spicekitchenincubator.org

Organizers of the Spice Kitchen Incubator, a program which helps refugees start their own businesses, unveiled their new kitchen space in Salt Lake City yesterday.

Natalie El-Deiry is the department director at the International Rescue Committee and oversees the Spice Kitchen Incubator project. She says her organization had received a growing number of requests from the refugee community for help establishing food businesses. After training entrepreneurs in non-permanent spaces across the city, El-Deiry said she’s excited to see the program finally have a space of its own.

“We provide workshops, technical assistance and training,” El-Deiry said. “We provide access to markets and market opportunities and we provide affordable access to a commercial kitchen.”

Alison Einerson

The Winter Market at Salt Lake City’s Rio Grande Station opened for its second year this past weekend. The market keeps the memories of summer farmers markets alive in its indoor location, with over 60 venders selling produce, sauces and jams, meat and baked goods.

Alison Einerson, Winter Market manager, said Saturday’s event drew between 2,500 and 3,000 people, a record crowd.

Kathy Searle

Finding homes for children who need to be adopted can be difficult, especially if they are older or have siblings; however, one group is trying to get them home, one photo at a time.

The Utah Heart Gallery kicked off its tenth year Wednesday. The gallery partners kids with volunteer photographers and displays the portraits at the state Capitol, said Adoption Exchange of Utah Director of Programs Kathy Searle.

Utah State University football player Hayden Weichers was indefinitely suspended from the university’s football team on Tuesday, the same day he was arrested and issued a citation for trying to solicit a prostitute.  

According to Logan Police Chief Gary Jensen, the 20-year-old redshirt freshman wide receiver tried to solicit a prostitute from Ogden in Logan on Oct. 22. Contrary to the speculation of football fans, Jensen said the delivery of the citation was postponed due to an ongoing investigation, not to allow Weichers to continue playing for USU.

Ghost
blogs.valpo.edu

Your heart starts racing, palms sweating, your muscles tense and goosebumps arise, there are butterflies in your stomach—you’re experiencing one of the basic human emotions: fear.

Fear is the work of the amygdala, a small part of the brain that can trigger a fight or flight response in less than a second. Some fears are learned and even cultural, while others have no borders, for example a fear of snakes, spiders or heights.

With so many things to be scared of in the world, researchers have long focused on how to stop fear. According to Columbia University professor Carolyn Rodriguez, by facing our fears we can trick our brains into overcoming what scares us. The more you face the fear, the more you trick your brain into releasing opioid chemicals that actually produce a feeling of comfort.

UPR reporters Elaine Taylor and Taylor Halversen set out to see if they could  overcome their fears by facing them directly.


The polls continue to swing in the Mia Love-Doug Owens Fourth Congressional District Race. Earlier this week a poll from BYU showed Owens, a Democrat, creeping ahead, but now a new poll shows that Republican Love is the one in the lead.

The poll from Utahpolicy.com gives Love a five percent lead over Owens, with 48 percent and 43 percent of the vote, respectively. However, the margin of error for the survey is also five percent, meaning it is likely no one will know who the next representative to congress will be until election night. The gap between the candidates is narrowing, however; the last poll from Utahpolicy.com had Love leading by nine percent.

According to the most recent poll, one-third of respondents have already cast their ballots for the election.

bls.gov

The numbers are in for Utah’s SAGE test, the new statewide exam used to measure student proficiency under the Common Core initiative, and the results show that Utah kids are not proficient.

According to the results, just 41.7 percent of students are proficient in language arts, 38.7 percent in mathematics and 43.7 percent in science. These numbers are all down from previous testing years, but officials say that is to be expected.

seattle.gov

Utah’s Supreme Court lifted its hold on adoptions by same-sex couples Thursday. The adoptions had been put on hold in May following the state’s decision to appeal a 10th Circuit Court ruling which struck down Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage. However, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision earlier this month to not hear appeals from states seeking to keep their bans in place legalized same-sex marriage in Utah and opened the door for adoptions to begin.

vandalism artwork shows up in scenic places.
Casey Nocket / Modern Hiker

The National Park Service is investigating a string of vandalism incidents across the West, and they’re using social media to find the perpetrator.

The vandalism was first reported on the blog Modern Hiker. The blog claims the vandalism, which features paintings of people, was perpetrated by the New York based artist Casey Nocket. Nocket allegedly recorded the paintings on her Instagram account, which has now been deleted.

National Park Service Spokesperson Alexandria Picavet would not confirm that the artist listed in the blog post was responsible, however she did say that social media did help bring the problem to light.

T. Ruen

A partial solar eclipse is headed our way Thursday afternoon. NASA Ambassador Patrick Wiggins said the moon will move in front of the sun starting at 3 p.m. and continue until just after 5 p.m.

“Now it won’t cover it up completely, at maximum it will be a little less than half covered, but still that’s a nice taste for the total eclipse of the sun that we’ve got coming up in 2017 up in Idaho,” Wiggins said.

The number of eclipses varies from year to year; this year the state will see three.

Bryan Bird, SuperTopo

A 47-year-old man died Sunday from injuries sustained after a fall in Zion National Park. Park officials say the man was from California. His identity is being withheld until his family is notified of his death.

The man was climbing the Iron Messiah, a technical climb, when he fell. According to park officials, the man’s climbing partner, a native of France, witnessed the fall.

Bennett Purser

Feminist blogger and pop culture critic Anita Sarkeesian decided to cancel a talk planned for Wednesday at Utah State University after threats of mass violence were made to USU from an anonymous source. USU police say there was never an imminent threat, but Sarkeesian decided to cancel the presentation after she discovered the university would be unable to prevent people with legally concealed firearms from entering the event because of Utah’s concealed carry law.

tex4mayor.com

According to the most recent Gallup Poll, just 14 percent of voters approve of how congress is handling its job, but that hasn’t stopped 14 new candidates from throwing their bones in the ring. 

The first ever election for canine mayor of Salt Lake County is underway, with caninedates running to raise money for the Salt Lake County Animal Services Injured Animals Fund.

dot.gov

A bus driver is in jail and more than 70 elementary school students and their chaperones are safe following a dangerous drive to Brigham Young University Monday morning.

“We had a driver who was erratic in her travel, apparently traveling from one lane to the next back and forth,” said Chris Williams from the Davis School District. “There was enough concern on the bus that a couple people called 911.”

Louder's Facebook page

The mystery surrounding a missing Murray woman continues. Police say Kayelyn Louder, 30, was exhibiting strange behavior in the 911 calls the she made in the 24 hour period before her disappearance on Sept. 27. Murray Police Office Kenny Bass explained.

“At this point we think it’s possible that she’s not in her normal state of mind,” Bass said. “She could be delusional, so our main concern is to try to still find her because we want to make sure that she’s okay. If she is delusional she may be more of a harm to herself than anything.”

Utah Division of Water Resources

With drought conditions reaching record proportions, the issue of water distribution in the West is only growing. Though cloud seeding hasn’t been proven to increase snowpack by that much, lower basin states have been putting money into the technology in Utah, Colorado and Wyoming with the hope of increasing the amount of water flowing into the Southwest. Though some see this as a good solution to the ongoing drought facing much of the West, others are skeptical about sending Utah water downstream.

seattle.gov

Same-sex marriage is now legal in the state, following the U.S. Supreme Court’s announcement Monday that it would not be hearing appeals from five states, including Utah, that were seeking to keep their bans on same-sex marriage in place.

This decision means the lower court’s ruling that Utah’s ban on gay-marriage is unconstitutional will be upheld.

utah.gov

Deer Valley Resort announced Friday that it has agreed to purchase Solitude Mountain Resort for an undisclosed amount of money. The acquisition will not close until the end of this ski season, said Deer Valley’s Colleen Reardon.

“We’ve signed it, but we won’t close until April 30. That gives us some great time to learn more about solitude and their operation; it’s been a really well run resort,” Reardon said.

Ebola virus under microscope
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

On Tuesday the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that the first case of Ebola to be diagnosed in the U.S. was confirmed in Dallas, Texas. The patient had recently been in Liberia.

“The patient was visiting family members and staying with family members who live in this country. We will contact anyone who we think has any likelihood of having had an exposure to the individual while they were infectious,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden. “At this point, that does not include anyone who might have traveled with him because he was not infectious at that time.”

Butterfly on milkweed
nrcs.usda.gov

With winter fast approaching, it's not only Utah’s snowbirds that are migrating south.

Monarch butterflies across the nation have already begun their annual journey to warmer climates. Unlike East Coast monarchs, Utah’s population of the orange and black butterflies travel to southern California for the winter months, according to Shawn Clark, insect collections manager at BYU’s Life Sciences Museum.

“There are some migrations that will be for thousands of miles. They can fly for several hundred miles at a time without stopping,” Clark said.

Patrick Wiggins

Utah NASA Ambassador Patrick Wiggins just named the 5th asteroid he’s discovered over the years after the state’s largest university.

“Henceforth and forevermore, that lonely little rock floating around in space out beyond the orbit of mars but not quite as far as Jupiter will be named for the University of Utah,” Wiggins said.

www.healthearizonaplus.gov

A new study published in the Journal of Family Psychology shows that parental favoritism, real or perceived, can impact a teen’s likelihood of using substances like alcohol and cigarettes.

Brigham Young University professor Alex Jensen said the concept of favoritism is pervasive and can have lasting impact on a child.

“Sometimes we joke about who’s the favorite child in the family and even ask people that question, but it’s really a complex process and a complex idea,” Jensen said.

God Loves Gays billboard project

An Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign sponsored by Facebook God, a cartoon character that has nearly 2 million followers, is raising money to place billboards that say “God Loves Gays” around the country.

God, whose true identity remains unknown, spoke in the campaign video.

“The Westboro Baptist Church, this hate group goes around saying God hates gay people. Nonsense, I love gay people.”

Northern Lights
NASA

Normally the Northern Lights are reserved for their namesake—the far North, but tonight part of Utah and much of the northern third of the United States may get a glimpse of the spectacle.

The aurora is caused by magnetized plasma clouds released by the sun. According to NASA, these clouds become part of the solar wind that can collide with our planet’s magnetic field. That invisible field surrounding Earth is stretched by the winds, said Tabitha Buehler, assistant professor lecturer of physics and astronomy at the University of Utah.

Viracon

Viracon was forced to close its glass manufacturing plant in 2013 after the economic impact of the recession dampened demand for architectural glass.

The company is following through on their promise to return when the economy for glass improved, said Director of Marketing for Viracon, Kevin Anez.

“It was really a result of the recession that was lagging on, and since then we’ve seen a turnaround and the levels of demand are growing higher than we’ve seen in several years,” Anez said. “It’s great to see the commercial market coming back, and for those reasons we are opening our St. George plant so that we can better manage our capacity levels.”

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