Local

All-time 100-degree record still in sight

The temperature touched 100 on Friday in Wichita, vaulting 2011 into second place all by itself in the city's list of most triple-digit days in year.

Now at 47 days, 2011 moved out of a tie with 1980, which dominates Wichita's list of record highs. Three more 100s will tie this year with 1936 — and forecasters now say that's not out of the question.

"We could see 100 both Saturday and Sunday," said Vanessa Pearce, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Wichita.

That would bring 2011 within one of tying the all-time high. Stay tuned.

—Stan Finger

Cigarette blamed in fire at apartments on East Lincoln

A cigarette left on a balcony is being blamed for the blaze that destroyed one apartment building and caused significant smoke damage in another at a southeast Wichita complex Thursday.

The fire at High Point East apartments, 9400 E. Lincoln, displaced about 20 families and caused an estimated $750,000 in damage to structures and contents, officials said.

The cigarette was discarded in a plastic container on a second-floor balcony of Building 600, fire Capt. Stuart Bevis said. Building 100 was evacuated because smoke was blowing into it.

The fire, classified as an accident, was reported just before 3 p.m. and quickly burned out of control. Two people had minor smoke inhalation.

—Stan Finger

Mistrial in baby girl's death

HUTCHINSON — The second-degree murder trial of a woman who used a hair dryer to warm her 3-month-old daughter on a cold night has ended with the jury unable to agree on a verdict.

A mistrial was declared Friday in Reno County District Court for 20-year-old Brigit Hippen, who was 18 when her daughter died in February 2010 in their Hutchinson apartment.

Hippen's daughter, Karina Perez, had a body temperature of 108 degrees when she died. Hippen testified she had placed a hand-held hair dryer on the "low" setting on a counter near the baby's bassinet to warm her up, then fallen asleep for three hours.

—Associated Press

Tennis open house today

City tennis courts in Riverside Park are having an open house today.

Outdoor courts were recently resurfaced, and new lighting for nighttime play was recently installed at Ralph Wulz Riverside Tennis Center, 551 Nims.

The open house runs from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Among events:

* Free outdoor court times from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

* Matches featuring the Wichita State University tennis team at 4 p.m.

Hamburgers and hot dogs will be available for $1.

—Eagle staff

Reading starts school months after tornado

The small central-Kansas town of Reading took a big step in its recovery from a tornado with the beginning of the new school year.

The first day of school Friday was emotional for students and adults still recovering from a May 21 tornado that killed one and devastated homes and businesses in the town just west of the Lyon-Osage County line.

Reading Elementary Principal Peggy Fort said opening the building, which had part of its roof torn off, will help children get back to a normal routine and gives the rest of the town hope for the future.

—Associated Press

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