Danie Alexander

Associate Producer, Announcer

Danette (Danie) Alexander first came to KCUR in 2007 as an intern for Up to Date after completing her B.A. in Communications at the University of Missouri – Kansas City. After her KCUR internship was completed, Danie continued to spend her mornings assisting senior producer Stephen Steigman as a volunteer with the show.  Her radio experience also includes stints with public radio's New Letters on the Air as a broadcast engineer and on local public radio as host of a weekly overnight call-in show.

In December 2011, Danie started as a temporary on-air announcer and is now the regular voice on Saturday afternoons.  In August 2012 she became the associate producer for Up to Date where one of her assignments is  producing the weekly segment 90-Mile View.  

Danette Alexander also holds a B.S. degree from William Woods University. Originally from Long Island, NY, she and her husband Steven Alexander live in Raytown when they’re not working on their future retirement property on Tablerock Lake.

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Up To Date
3:57 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

Should Rest Requirements For Truckers Be Relaxed?

Credit wikipedia commons

When New Jersey prosecutors charged the truck driver who crashed into comedian Tracy Morgan's limo, they said the man behind the wheel had not slept in more than 24 hours.  Not long after that accident, the Senate Appropriations Committee voted to rescind some of the rest requirements for big rig drivers.

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Up To Date
3:14 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

Death of Kansas City Veteran Emphasizes Need For Timely PTSD Treatment

Army Specialist Isaac Sims seen here in a holiday greeting sent from Ramadi, Iraq in 2009.
Credit 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division Public Affairs/US Army

The death last month of 26-year old Army veteran Isaac Sims in a confrontation with Kansas City, Missouri police raised many questions including whether this loss of life could have been prevented.

On this edition of Up to Date Steve Kraske brings together a panel to look at the events leading up to Sims' death, the special municipal court that works with veterans facing criminal charges, and a therapy program treating military PTSD sufferers while they are still on active duty.

Guests:

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Up To Date
6:00 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

Delirium Tremens Changed Views On 19th Century Alcoholism

Imagine watching a group of men mutilate the body of your mother.  This is what poet Edgar Allan Poe experienced as a hallucination brought on by alcohol-induced delirium tremens, DT’s.  On this edition of Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with historian Matthew Osborn to discover how this condition, first described in 1813, was the catalyst for changing how the medical profession diagnosed and treated the problems of alcohol abuse.

Guest:

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Up To Date
10:22 am
Wed July 2, 2014

Journalist Examines 'What Wars Leave Behind'

While armed conflicts are ongoing, media coverage brings images and sounds from the center of war zones to the world. But what happens when the guns go silent and the combatants and media go home?

J. Malcolm Garcia looks at the people left to survive in the aftermath in his book, What Wars Leave Behind: The Faceless and the Forgotten. On Wednesday's Up to Date, the author talks with Steve Kraske about "the endless messiness of war and the failings of good intentions."

Guest:

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Up to Date
3:10 am
Sat June 28, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' June 27

Credit Canal+ Polska

  Up to Date's independent, foreign and documentary film critics share their favorites showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Chef
  • Belle
  • Ida (English subtitles)

Steve Walker:

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Up To Date
3:44 pm
Fri June 20, 2014

Local Listen: Greg Mackender

"The Winter's Tale" at the Heart of America Shakespeare Festival.
Credit Roger Ridpath / Heart of America Shakespeare Festival

The Heart of America Shakespeare Festival begins this weekend and while the play may be the thing, there’s live music too.

During performances of The Winter's Tale, there are three musicians on stage, including resident composer Greg Mackender on percussion and mallets, Sascha Groschang, on cello and Laura Parks on violin.

"I left a lot of openings for impromptu types of things," says Mackender. "There are other spots where they can get a little livelier, we can play around a little bit."

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Arts & Culture
1:08 pm
Fri June 13, 2014

KU Science Fiction Conference Explores Reality And Imagination

Credit KU Gunn Center For The Study Of Science Fiction

Every year at the University of Kansas, the faithful and talented gather at the intersection of reality and imagination. What brings the most outstanding in their field to Lawrence? The study and writing of science fiction. On Friday's Up To Date, guest host Suzanne Hogan looks at The Campbell Conference, a local conference which brings writers and fans together.

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Up To Date
12:00 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

A Closer Look At The Berkley Riverfront Development

A view of the Kit Bond Bridge from Berkley Riverfront Park.
Credit Vincent Parsons / Flickr Creative Commons

An Indianapolis firm has been chosen to develop the first phase of the Berkley Riverfront Development. The deal between the Port Authority of Kansas City and Flaherty & Collins marks the starting point for the Authority’s master plan to create “a world class urban village” on a 55-acre site. When finished there will be apartments, parking, office space, and retail shopping. On Thursday's Up to Date Steve Kraske finds out the details of the Berkley Riverfront Development.

Guests:

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Up To Date
10:40 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Local Listen: 77 Jefferson

The summer months are reggae season in Kansas City.  Known for sweet vocals and loping rhythms, Kansas City's 77 Jefferson has been one of the region's most popular purveyors of the Jamaican sound since its inception in 2006.  From the band's most recent album “Rarities Vol. 2” comes the breezy track,"Call On Me".

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Up To Date
3:22 pm
Thu June 5, 2014

The Impact Of EPA's Emissions Standards On Missouri And Kansas

Credit Alfred Palmer / Wikimedia Commons

The Environmental Protection Agency just released its plan to reduce carbon pollution from power plants and that idea is generating some heat of its own. On Thursday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske and a panel examine what the EPA standards mean for Missouri and Kansas. Both states rely heavily on coal-powered energy and face the challenge of meeting the emission cuts in the time allowed.  We’ll also look at whether alternatives like wind and solar will be catapulted to the front of the line in area energy production.

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Up To Date
3:38 pm
Wed June 4, 2014

College Connections Center Works To Stop "Summer Melt"

Credit MCC-Penn Valley

A new program in the metro is aimed at ensuring that graduating high school seniors intending to go to college don't become victims of "summer melt", the phenomenon where students set for college in the spring don't make it to campus in the fall.

The Kansas City Metro College Connections Center is designed to combat summer melt, an issue especially acute for low-income and first-generation college students.  Steve Kraske previews the new Center's goals with MCC-Penn Valley President Joe Seabrooks and KCUR reporter Elle Moxley.

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Up To Date
9:00 am
Tue June 3, 2014

America's Chronic Pain Problem

Credit vaXzine / Flickr Creative Commons

If you’ve got a shooting pain in your back that won’t quit or nagging, achy knees, you might be one of millions of Americans who suffer from chronic pain.

On Tuesday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske sits down with Judy Foreman to discuss her new book, A Nation in Pain. We'll get to the bottom of why our society fails to fully treat nearly 100 million Americans who live with chronic pain.

Guest:

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Up To Date
3:58 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Board Games In The Digital Age

Credit Patrick Q / Flickr Creative Commons

You’d think that the popularity of digital games like Angry Birds and Minecraft spells the end for the more traditional Monopoly and Risk but not so fast says one man. In this segment of Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with Eric Martin of BoardGameGeek for a look at how board games are faring in this digital age.

Guest:

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Up To Date
1:18 pm
Thu May 29, 2014

Meet Three Outstanding Law Enforcement Canines

ATF explosives detection canine, Roxi.

Law enforcement dogs these days can do some incredible things: sniffing out the chemicals used to start an arson fire, getting illegal drugs off our streets, or finding evidence in shootings and explosives investigations.

On this edition of Up to Date, host Steve Kraske meets three law enforcement dogs, and their handlers, to find out what it takes for a dog to become a key part of a law enforcement team.

Roxi 

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Up To Date
2:40 pm
Wed May 28, 2014

How Spring Is Shaping Up For Area Gardens And Trees

Credit Danielle Sherry / vegetablegardner.com

Spring is the season of possibility and hope. Just ask any gardener. Seeds go in the ground, are lovingly tended and then . . .  Mother Nature steps in. On Wednesday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with two experts to get some advice for your gardens and trees.

Guests:

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Up To Date
5:37 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Northland Symphony Orchestra's Got Game ... And Film Scores

Video game sound has evolved from the simple electronic theme music of Super Mario Bros. to the lush orchestral arrangements that accompany gamers' top choices today.  Recognizing the popularity of these games has inspired the musical selections for an upcoming concert by the Northland Symphony Orchestra.

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Up To Date
4:11 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

Local Listen: My Brothers & Sisters

Performances by My Brothers & Sisters are a spectacle.  The self-described "14-piece pop orchestra" from Kansas City includes string and horn sections, and a large chorus.  The ambitious project has been documented on "Violet Music: Volume One" a recently-released album that took over a year to record.  This edition of Local Listen features a song that showcases the soulful side of this expansive ensemble.  Here is "How To Move What To Wear".

Hear More: My Brothers & Sisters headline the annual spring dance at Knuckleheads on Saturday, May 31.

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Up To Date
11:44 am
Fri May 23, 2014

The Best Travel Apps For Your Summer Excursions

No matter where we go, our smartphones are a constant presence. Steve Kraske gets some good travel app recommendations on Friday's 'Up to Date.'
Credit David Goehring / Flickr-CC

The summer months are fast approaching, which means summer vacations are too. Whether you're taking a day trip or an international excursion, travel apps can take some of the burdens of planning, booking, even packing, off your shoulders.

In the first half of Friday's Up to Date, guest Dustin Jacobsen joins Steve Kraske with his recommendations for travel apps to help with everything from currency conversion to finding good hotel deals.

Guest:

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Up To Date
4:12 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

A Fan's Notes: None Of Our Business

Credit blogscanada.ca

It’s happened again: the dominant sports story has nothing to do with sports. Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling—sorry, this is the last time I hope to mention his name—remains in the headlines for bigoted comments that were caught on tape, twice—the first time secretly; the second, on CNN.
For citizens of conscience, this is an easy case: as the NBA presses forward to banish Sterling from the league, some may debate the penalty, but not the transgression.

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Up to Date
3:00 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

The Most Checked-Out Children's Books At Johnson County Libraries

These teen books have the highest historical check-out rate at the Johnson County Libraries.

In recent years, Harry Potter, The Hunger Games  and Twilight series have been favorites among young readers. However, a survey of the most frequently checked out books at the Johnson County libraries also includes classics from decades past.

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Up to Date
4:02 pm
Fri May 16, 2014

Cindy Hoedel On Life In Matfield Green, Kansas

Credit Terry Evans / Courtesy: Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

When you live in a town with fewer than 60 residents well, let's just say, there must be something special about it to make you give up the city life.  

Cindy Hoedel did just that when she moved from Kansas City to Chase County, Kansas.  On this edition of Up to Date, Hoedel affirms that the attraction that brought her to the Flint Hills hasn't waned.  Steve Kraske and Hoedel discuss the differences she's experienced between city and country life, what it's like being a former urbanite among native-born rural residents and  how her straw bale gardening is progressing.

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Up To Date
3:55 pm
Fri May 16, 2014

Be Prepared For Travel Abroad

Credit U.S. Department of State / Bureau of Consular Affairs

Many college students often spend a summer abroad for additional course credit or just to see a bit of the world. In the second portion of Friday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with a member of the State Department for some advice that could make their, or anyone's, time away from home as safe as possible.

Guest:

  • Viktoria Lopatkiewicz is a Division Chief in the Office of American Citizen Services for the U.S. Department of State.

Learn More:

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Up To Date
11:04 am
Wed May 14, 2014

Online University Offers Missourians An Alternate Route To Degrees

Host Steve Kraske sits down with the chancellor and an alum of the Western Governors University, an online university dedicated to affordable higher education.
Credit Western Governors University

Last year, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon signed a new partnership between the state of Missouri and nationally recognized, non-profit Western Governors University.  The idea: help thousands of the 750,000 Missourians with some higher education obtain an affordable college degree.  And affordable it is at just under $3,000 a semester.

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Up To Date
4:14 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Local Listen: Kantorei Of Kansas City

Since 2009 Kantorei of Kansas City has been accentuating the region's reputation as a hotbed of superior classical vocal ensembles.  Kantorei of Kansas City's latest album,“Music and Sweet Poetry, Choral Music by Matthew Harris,” was released by the British record label Resonus Classics on Valentine's Day.  In this edition of Local Listen, we enjoy "Fantasy on La Bamba," a gorgeous but decidedly lighthearted arrangement of the 1958 Ritchie Valens hit "La Bamba".

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Up To Date
9:00 am
Tue May 6, 2014

Public Transportation: Trends And Challenges

Credit www.kcstreetcar.org/

A new era in public transportation is underway in Kansas City with the construction of the downtown streetcar system, but will the future needs of aging baby boomers and mobile millennials be met? 

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Up To Date
9:00 am
Tue May 6, 2014

How Human Sex Life Compares To The Birds And The Bees

Credit Penguin Group (Canada)

The publisher of Nature's Nether Regions begins the book summary this way: "What’s the easiest way to tell species apart? Check their genitals."

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Up To Date
3:02 pm
Thu May 1, 2014

The Debate Over The Missouri Tax Cut Bill

Gov. Jay Nixon is expected to veto the proposed Missouri income tax cut later today.

On April 23, Up to Date's Steve Kraske spoke with Amy Blouin, Executive Director of the Missouri Budget Project, who opposes the tax cut, and Patrick Ishmael, a policy analyst with the Show-Me Institute who supports the signing of the bill.

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Up to Date
7:30 pm
Fri April 25, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' April 25 - 27

Irrfan Khan portrays Saajan in "The Lunchbox".
Credit Sony Classics

  Looking for a great film to see the weekend of April 25 - 27? Up to Date's indie, documentary and foreign film critics share their three favorites showing on area screens.

Cynthia Haines:

  • Anita
  • Particle Fever
  • Lunchbox

Steve Walker:

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Up To Date
11:24 am
Wed April 16, 2014

Web Exclusive: Edward James Olmos On Lt. Castillo Of 'Miami Vice'

Edward James Olmos as Lt. Martin Castillo on "Miami Vice".
Credit Google Commons

If Miami Vice was the hottest show on television in the '80s then Lt. Martin Castillo was the coolest character.  As portrayed by Edward James Olmos, Castillo was a man of few words and a mysterious past.  In this excerpt of his interview with Steve Kraske, Olmos recalls the conditions under which he took the role and why he didn't look at actors Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas during his first season on the show.

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Up To Date
6:18 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

A Fan's Notes: Great Expectations

Credit KCUR-FM

The year got off to a promising start for the Royals and their fans. In January, the teen pop singer known as Lorde won Grammy Awards for Best Performance and Song of the Year for her hit “Royals,” which she claims was inspired by a picture of George Brett that she saw in an old copy of National Geographic. When she performed in Kansas City a few weeks ago, the Royals presented her with an autographed Brett jersey. Lorde, born 11 years after the team’s last playoff appearance, called it “one of the coolest things” she owns—and she owns two Grammies.

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