Morning Headlines: La La's Full Court Life, the End of the Movie Tax, Willie Nelson, and More

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February 25 2011, 8:43 AM

"Darn budget cuts." That's what "gavel-happy" Republican state House Speaker Frank McNulty had to say when the head flew off his precious mallet, provoking chuckles from fellow lawmakers (Associated Press). Laughter is hardly among the reactions state leaders are expecting to hear when the University of Denver's Center for Colorado's Economic Future releases a nonpartisan review later today of the state's finances. The Daily Camera's editorial board takes a sneak peek, and loses its appetite.

On the Road Again: Expect tickets for Willie Nelson's Country Throwdown Tour stop at Red Rocks Amphitheatre to sell fast today. The day-long, June 21 event will feature "top country music artists and emerging singer-songwriters" like Jamey Johnson, Randy Houser, Lee Brice, and Brantley Gilbert (Denver Post).

Straw Energy: Don't judge Naturita on its uranium reserves alone: The southwestern Colorado town is also home to the Best Small Town Library in America (Denver Post). Since 2009, the country's largest straw-bale library (no kidding) "has issued 500 library cards and has put 5,000 new books on the shelves."

Tusk Force: Excavation crews will return to Snowmass' Ziegler Reservoir in May to look for more "exceptionally preserved" Ice Age fossils, like those unearthed at the site late last year (Aspen Times). Kirk Johnson, chief curator at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, gets geeky talking about the digs with Bill Husted over cocktails. The bones have caught the attention of state legislators, too (Denver Post).

La La's Land: Carmelo Anthony may be persona non grata in Denver right now, but that's not exactly the case in New York, the backdrop for La La's Full Court Life. The latest reality TV show anchored by La La Vazquez, Melo's wife, will chronicle the couple's move to the city (Denver Post). VH1 began filming the series—in January.

Flip the Script: Rather than asking local movie-goers to pay a ten-cent ticket tax to fund incentives for local filmmaking efforts, a state House committee has revised the proposal, turning the tax into a voluntary donation instead, reports the Denver Post, which provides some silly quotes from the committee hearing.