From Acadia in Maine to Zion in Utah to the North Cascades in Washington, America's 401 national park areas have gates blocking entrance roads.

The last remaining campers and hotel guests in the parks must leave Thursday, and park rangers will patrol to keep others out.

The national parks "belong to the American people, and the American people should have the right to come in," says National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis. "But the only way I can protect these places during this period is to shut them down."

Israel eased a major restriction on the Gaza Strip last week. For the first time in six years, limited commercial shipments of cement and iron were allowed through Israel into Gaza.

Pardit Pri had health insurance until she decided to quit her job as a legal administrative assistant and stay home with her newborn son 20 months ago. She thought she'd have coverage by now. But it didn't work out that way.

"I knew that I wasn't going to be working for a while because I decided to stay home with my son, and I thought ... 'OK, fingers crossed. Nothing will happen during that time,' " she says, as she plays with her son in their Orange County, Calif., apartment.

As the leader of Senate Democrats, Harry Reid has been in a lot of fights — but this one may be different, in that Reid has drawn a line.

Throughout the weeks leading up to the shutdown, through four votes in the Senate with not a single defection from the Democratic caucus, and once again after the meeting at the White House, Reid has rejected any of the changes in the Affordable Care Act that House Republicans have demanded as a condition for funding the federal government.

After more than two decades in city government, Bill Averill has a pretty impressive mental inventory of Milwaukee real estate. He started in the city assessor's office when he was 34, after leaving a private sector job that paid better but had no retirement benefits.

"That was one of the main reasons I went to work for the City of Milwaukee," he says. "And so I knew the pension at some time, way out in the future, would be a benefit to me."

About a dozen people protest partnership with Wilmar over rainforest practices

Autocam president had argued requirement to provide birth control violates Catholic faith

Day two of the government shutdown is nearing its finish, with no end in sight. And that's in spite of talks at the White House late today. President Obama met with House Speaker John Boehner for over an hour Wednesday evening. The meeting failed to produce a deal that would end the federal government shutdown.

Sandy Soifer in the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame
Nancy Camden

  About 160 women have been honored in the Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame and about a dozen of them are from the Kalamazoo area.

Jerry Givens

Remember all of those old AOL discs you used to get in the mail? Artist Jerry Givens wishes he had more of them. Givens makes mosaics out of cut up CDs. At today’s Kalamazoo Art Hop, his art will be at Sangha Yoga where Givens is general manager.

The standard fee to search for a record would increase by $8. Copies would rise from $29 to $42.

After a breakup, raw feelings can set off a desire for revenge. Some jilted lovers have taken to posting intimate pictures of a former partner on the Internet. It's a phenomenon known as "revenge porn," and on Monday, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a law making it a crime.

The new law is a victory to Holly Jacobs, who was a victim of revenge porn. Jacobs went through what sounds like a typical boy-meets-girl story of falling in and out of love. The first year of the relationship, Jacobs and her partner lived in the same city, but she left to go to graduate school in Miami.

raymondharvey.net

Raymond Harvey, music director of the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, recently spoke with WMUK's Cara Lieurance about the life and music of composer Benjamin Britten. 

Born 100 years ago in the British coastal town of Lowestoft, Britten's music is the focus of The World of... Benjamin Britten which will be presented by the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra on Sunday, Oct. 6. Raymond Harvey narrates and conducts the concert.

The old line in Washington is that the "establishment" controls everything.

But the fights that have resulted in the government shutdown have turned that cliche upside down.

This time, it's the Tea Party and its allies in Congress calling the shots. The "establishment" — on Capitol Hill and in the business community — has so far been on the outs.

You can hear the frustration in the voice of 11-term Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., as he runs a gantlet of reporters at the Capitol.

"I'm just more concerned about there not being a clean CR," he says amid the hubbub.

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From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

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Hospitals that serve the neediest patients are bracing themselves through the roll-out of the Affordable Care Act. These safety-net hospitals treat large numbers of people with no health insurance and many are struggling. In New York, a handful of these hospitals are on the brink of closing.

And as NPR's Joel Rose reports, some worry that the health care law will make things even worse, not better.

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Russian prosecutors have filed charges of piracy against 14 people who were aboard a Greenpeace boat during a protest last month in the Russian Arctic. Under Russian law, piracy is punishable by as much as 15 years in prison. Greenpeace says it was peacefully protesting the dangers of oil drilling in the Arctic and that the Russian government is violating international law.

NPR's Corey Flintoff reports from Moscow.

President Obama has been railing against Republicans in Congress nearly every day this week.

"One faction of one party in one house of Congress in one branch of government shut down major parts of the government," he said in the White House Rose Garden on Tuesday. "All because they didn't like one law."

He's expected to take that message on the road on Thursday, visiting a construction company in Maryland to talk about the impact of the shutdown on the economy.

And that finger-pointing at Republicans is sure to be part of his speech again.

Amy Peterson / ISAAC

The Kalamazoo community organizing group ISAAC will hold one of its regular issues convocations Tuesday, October 3rd. But this time there’s a twist: the Interfaith Strategy for Advocacy and Action in the Community usually asks the community for input on the issues it should address. But this time the group says it doesn’t plan any changes in the agenda set at the last meeting in early 2012.

This is the third story in our four-part series examining your digital trail and who potentially has access to it. It was co-reported by G.W. Schulz from the Center for Investigative Reporting. Yesterday, we examined how data-tracking companies are monitoring your online behavior. Today we look at your Fourth Amendment rights.

We don't often think of professional athletes improving with age, but Jamie Moyer was a better pitcher in his 40s than he was in his 20s. Moyer became the oldest pitcher to win a Major League Baseball game when, in April 2012, at the age of 49 years, 150 days, he pitched the Colorado Rockies to a 5-3 win over the San Diego Padres.

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This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up, you've probably heard a lot about the Stand Your Ground law in the death of Trayvon Martin, but you might not have heard about the woman who said she just fired a warning shot at her abusive husband and was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Now her case is getting a second look, and we'll talk about that in just a few minutes.

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I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. In a few minutes, we will hear from a white South African couple who left their middle-class home in the suburbs for a month to live in one of South Africa's poorest black townships. They'll tell us why they did it and what they learned from it.

A Month In Mamelodi: 'Slum Tourism'?

Oct 2, 2013

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Michigan House website

Republican State Representative Margaret O'Brien will run for state Senate in a new district that will be made up of Kalamazoo County. 

Grandma's Gone, But She Lives On In Google

Oct 2, 2013

Dustin Moore of Portland, Oregon, was browsing around town on Google Street View when he spotted a familiar face. The image taken of his late grandma Alice's house captured her sitting on her front stoop, soaking up some sun and reading the paper. Moore says it's one of the last photos taken of her — she died last year.

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This happens again and again. A man planning a drug deal mistakenly sends a text message to the police. It's happened so often, it could be some kind of case study for psychologists. The latest alleged seller was Nicholas Delear of New Jersey, who sent his message to the wrong guy and met up later with an undercover cop.

People, there is no point worrying about NSA electronic surveillance when you perform surveillance on yourself.

Tax will generate $194,000 next year to pay for patrols targeting the area

Lawsuit follows Labor Department investigation

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