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Mega-retailer offers mega-church's music

New Life Church may have been marred by the Ted Haggard scandal, but that hasn't stopped Wal-Mart from carrying its new CD, My Savior Lives. The album, recorded the spring before the gay-sex-and-meth revelations surfaced, includes songs by interim pastor and possible Haggard replacement Ross Parsley. The jumbo merchant began offering the recording last Tuesday for a discounted $12.88 online.

"I believe that the powerful work the Holy Spirit did in our church that night back in 2006 was somehow captured in ones and zeroes and put onto this CD, and now the largest company in America is helping spread that incredible experience across our country," wrote Ross Parsley in an e-mail, encouraging congregants to visit Wal-Mart and buy the album. NZ

Journalists, bloggers are threats, Army says

The Army's 1st Information Operations Command labeled the media a threat on par with al Qaeda in a move that has sounded alarms among free-speech advocates.

Warlords, drug cartels, hackers, militia groups and spies were also either "traditional" or "nontraditional" threats the media being nontraditional according to information from the command posted on a Wired News blog.

The Army also is cracking down on soldier blogs that troops use to connect with loved ones. The command, in a slide presentation, noted the "whole world" is reading them.

"Posting sensitive photographs to the Internet (especially those showing the results of IED strikes, battle scenes, casualties and destroyed or damaged equipment)" were among concerns and issues. MdY

War leaves renters' market

In part because of the war in Iraq that began in 2003, apartment vacancy rates have regularly hovered around double digit percentages, keeping the city's average rents around $650 a month.

But this year, despite more than 11 percent vacancies, rents have climbed slightly. They're now about $700 a month on average, according to the Apartment Association of Colorado Springs.

The association says the increase appears driven by the creation of high-end units.

Vacancies are expected to come down when 23,000 people troops, family members and civilians arrive at Fort Carson in the next five years via Fort Hood, Texas, because of base realignment.

Yet the biggest influx of people remains some two years away. MdY

County fair to include sharks

While the El Paso County Fair typically shores up the 4-H crowd, this July's event seeks to attract non-traditionals as well. Themed "Where Everyone Wins," the fair will feature environmental programs alongside the demolition derby.

In the "live shark encounter," one fair-goer will plop into a tank alongside a shark. The fair's Web site displays a photo of a grown man hugging a shark from behind, accompanied with the words: "WE ARE LOOKING FOR THAT ONE SPECIAL PERSON TO BRAVE THE WATERS!"

The fair will be held from July 21 to 28 at the fairgrounds in Calhan. NZ

Anti-Bruce group honored

If it wasn't enough that County Commissioner Douglas Bruce's ballot issues were creamed in the November election, now there's a prize for the creaming.

Last week, the Colorado Springs Economic Development Corporation presented a Community Enhancement Award to the Citizens for Effective Government, a local group that helped to defeat Bruce's efforts.

Issues 200 and 201 meant to shrink the city's sales tax, limit city debt and eradicate city property tax. Voters rejected the issues, but not before a widely publicized showdown between Bruce and City Manager Lorne Kramer, who called Bruce someone who "believes that he's smarter than you, he's smarter than me, he's smarter than the elected people that you have put into office and he is smarter than everyone else." NZ

FAC Modern unveils Golden Age of Jazz

In the 1930s and '40s, with America suffering economic devastation and racial segregation, William P. Gottlieb took it upon himself to photograph the jazz community, capturing its passions, joys and musical breakthroughs.

By itself, Gottlieb's close-up of a sweaty, impassioned Lionel Hampton makes the FAC Modern's Portraits from the Golden Age of Jazz worth seeing. Same could be said for the snapshot of a young Miles Davis gazing at one of his idols. In the blink of an eye, Gottlieb's able to capture a livelihood and vigor that is synonymous with these figures and their music.

Still, it's tough not to feel unsure about the exhibit; while full of striking photos, little of it stays in the viewers' mind afterward.

Why? Visit and click on "Web extra" to find out. EA

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