This week, we’ve got some of the most beautiful campuses in the country, a beautiful forest, a very good dog, and some whip-smart kids.

There’s always something exciting happening in our fair state. Here’s a roundup of a few of our favorite recent headlines. Spot a story you’d like to share? Send it to newsletter editor Caroline Dohack for possible inclusion in a future issue.

Campus Pretty

Two Missouri universities scored top spots on Architectural Digest’s 64 Prettiest College Campuses in America list. Washington University in St. Louis came in at No. 20 thanks to its Cope & Stewardson-designed project. The University of Missouri in Columbia came in at No. 29 for its iconic Francis Quadrangle.

Good Boy!

A Golden Retriever named Rasta and his handler, Jennifer Vernon, were awarded the Crystal Kipper & Ali Kemp Memorial Award. Rasta is a therapy dog whose presence in the courtroom helps trauma victims find the courage to speak up on the stand. Missourinet has the story.

Battleship Missouri Makeover Complete

It’s taken 14 years and more than $6 million, but the restoration of the teak main deck on the Battleship Missouri at Pearl Harbor is finally complete. Teak wood is an important material on battleships as it protects against sparks from metal-on-metal contact, thus reducing fire risk. Listen at KSMU.

A Sweet Treat and a Wild Ride

Hiland Dairy has announced its latest ice cream creation, Fire in the Hole. A melange of marshmallow-flavored ice cream swirled with chocolate ribbons and graham cracker pieces, this treat is inspired by Silver Dollar City’s new indoor roller coaster

I Before E Except After C

Seven Missouri students have qualified to compete in the Scripps National Spelling Bee in National Harbor, Maryland. You can meet the spellers on the spelling bee website and find information about when and how to watch the competition. 

Stormin’ Norman Gets His Due

As the Associated Press reports, former University of Missouri basketball coach Norm Stewart was inducted into the Hall of Famous Missourians in the Jefferson City Capitol building on Wednesday, May 1. Under Stewart’s leadership, the Tigers played in 16 NCAA tournaments and won eight regular-season conference championships plus six conference tournament championships.

A Peaceful Retreat

CBS News shared with its viewers the sights and sounds of springtime in the Mark Twain National Forest.