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The Burning Hills Amphitheatre in Medora seats an audience of 2,853 for the annual Medora Musical performances. Originally built in 1958, the amphitheater received a major renovation to the sets and stage in 2005.

This is Up and Down, where we give a brief thumbs up and thumbs down on the issues from the past week.

Up

The Medora Musical wrapped up a successful season on Sept. 9. The 118,000 people who visited the musical this summer added up to the second highest attendance in the musical’s history. A lot of hard work goes into providing the family entertainment during the summer. Some folks enjoy spending the day wandering the town before relaxing under the stars with the musical. Others visit the musical after exploring the Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Either way it results in a fun vacation trip.

Down

Not that farmers need any more problems, but a new weed threatens the Upper Midwest region. The Palmer amaranth, a native of the southwest U.S., is spreading east and north. It's established in parts of the Corn Belt and has been found in southern Minnesota and parts of South Dakota. It’s expected to spread to the rest of the Upper Midwest. Palmer amaranth can produce as many 1 million seeds and the seeds are so small that farmers can spread them without knowing it. The warning is out and now farmers must prepare for it.

Up

DNA test results have confirmed that Ashton Matheny and Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind are the parents of a baby found in the apartment of two suspects in the death of LaFontaine-Greywind. Matheny now has legal custody of the baby. It’s been a difficult wait for Matheny. Hopefully, all the issues can be resolved and the baby girl, Haisley Jo, can begin having a normal life.

Down

The hacking of personal information held by Equifax could impact more than 248,000 North Dakotans. Overall, more than 143 million Americans could have had personal information stolen. Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem has urged North Dakotans to take steps to prevent identify theft. He’s right when he says it’s Equifax’s sole responsibility to protect the information.

Up

Gov. Doug Burgum has announced plans to form a task force to study education and develop recommendations for the 2019 Legislature. He’s putting stress on innovation. This has the possibility of resulting in some good ideas. Members of the task force need to be willing to look at new ideas and legislators need to be open to the recommendations.

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