The 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, wrap up on Sunday, Aug. 21. Some 11,551 athletes from 207 nations participated in 306 events in 28 sports.

In ancient Greece, athletes from the various kingdoms and city-states would meet at the Temple of Zeus in Olympia on the Peloponnese to compete in honor of the gods.

The so-called Olympic Truce did not halt wars between these states as many people believe — human warfare is perhaps our one unifying constant — but it did permit athletes and pilgrims to travel freely from their home cities to the games and back under the protection of Zeus.

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As small-town journalists, we are surrounded by the swirl of rumors and “word on the street” about the news stories we cover.

Most of these rumors are easily confirmed or debunked by a phone call, internet search or email. On occasion, however, a source comes forward to provide information on the condition of anonymity and in most cases, their identity is immaterial to the records they provide, such as emails, documents, text messages, recordings or internal memos, and their name remains secret.

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Last week, I was competing at the 27th annual National Poetry Slam, a weeklong tournament held this year in Decatur, Ga.

NPS 2016Poetry topics ranged from social justice, identity, gender equality and politics to death, sexual assault, domestic violence, suicide survival and mental illness to love and sex, some funny, some deadly serious and most emotionally moving.

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On Saturday, Aug. 6, most of the bills passed by the Arizona State Legislature this session went into effect. Of the 388 bills passed into law, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey signed 374 into law, three of which are particularly noteworthy.

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School resumes this week through Sedona and the Verde Valley.

With school back in session, it means more children will be on the sidewalks and streets early in the morning and in the afternoon.

For most of children, back-to-school is nothing new, but for others, walking, biking or taking the bus to school is a new activity and some may not necessarily be the safest or aware of traffic or the rules.

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It’s election season in Sedona and we have seven candidates running for five seats on City Council.

No candidates put forth their names to challenge incumbent Mayor Sandy Moriarty, making her reelection a foregone conclusion.

For the rest of the field, candidates who win 50 percent plus one vote in the primary election on Tuesday, Aug. 30, will be declared the winner. If candidates don’t reach that threshold, they will continue on to the general election on Tuesday, Nov. 8.

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