Central Standard

Monday - Friday at 10 a.m.

Central Standard is a daily radio show that explores what really matters to the people in the Kansas City area. We tell the stories of our city and region from the bottom up and through the perspective of individuals. We are an inclusive forum that explores art, ideas and how the news affects lives and communities.


  • Monday: Green Bean Casseroles / Kansas City Syrians / Shared Work Spaces
  • Tuesday: White Death Rate / Behavioral Health Gaps
  • Wednesday: Cul De Sacs / Third Graders On Community
  • Thursday: Thanksgiving Special
  • Friday: Central Standard Special: Planes, Trains And Automobiles

Paper Source

Oct 9, 2015
Paul Andrews

A Kansas City Star reporter talks about falling in love with her story subjects, her path into journalism and motherhood.


  • Mará Rose Williams, education reporter and parenting columnist, Kansas City Star
Alyson Raletz/KCUR

A 13-year-old shares his thoughts about last night's playoff game — and what the Royals mean to him.


  • Joe Steele, Royals fan
Martin Abbeglen / Flickr

Organic, free-range, pasture-raised, paleo, vegetarian. Those words have become big — and big money-makers — in the food industry. But what are the actual environmental impacts of our food choices? And what are some of the challenges of eating local?


Esther Honig / KCUR


Standing on the corner of Armour Boulevard and Troost Avenue in Kansas City, 21 year-old Troy Robertson holds a sign that says: “My life Matters. Honk if your life matters.”

The DLC/Flickr -- CC

As one of the oldest neighborhoods in Kansas City, the Historic Northeast has been home to immigrants, the wealthy and the white collar and blue collar communities. A longtime resident, a newspaper publisher (and co-curator of an exhibit about the Historic Northeast) and an urban design expert discuss the history and legacy of this neighborhood — as well as some upcoming changes on Independence Avenue.


The five stages of grief are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. When loved ones are lost to violent crime, some say the more appropriate final stage is not acceptance, but understanding. With a rise in Kansas City's homicide rate, experts and citizens discuss the psychological fallout of living with the reality of violent crime.


Roger Coleman's new book begins with a curse on Kansas City. It's the dreaded curse of dullness. Coleman spent 42 years as a minister in midtown, Kansas City and started writing five years ago when he saw the city becoming younger, more vibrant and more open. He wanted to document that shift. His protagonist is a boy whose mission is to lift the curse of dullness. His journey takes him all over town.


Hannah Copeland / KCUR

Bassist Johnny Hamil started out playing what he calls "sleaze-rock." Now, he performs and teaches in many musical languages, and he's trying to teach classically trained young musicians to shred with all-string arrangements of songs by AC/DC and the Ramones. 


Esther Honig/KCUR

Kansas City's food truck scene has exploded over the past few years.

If you crave international fare, like Australian meat pies, Cuban sandwiches or Spanish tapas — or more down-home grub, like barbecue, tacos or waffles — you can get it from one of our local food trucks.


Oct 2, 2015
Esther Honig/KCUR

The popularity of food trucks has soared in Kansas City, especially over the past few years. We visit a truck that serves boneless chicken wings that are stuffed with fried rice, then KCUR's Food Critics search out the best food truck offerings in Kansas City.


Alex Smith / KCUR

Imagine your way of life becoming untenable, and you have to leave your home and family. What do you do and how do you adjust to life in a new — but foreign — place? We explore how Kansas City has played a significant role in the pipeline of refugees coming to the United States, and we hear the stories of two refugees who settled in Kansas City.


Suzanne Hogan / KCUR

One of Summer Farrar's first assignments as a student at the Kansas City Art Institute was to draw the same pile of sticks every day for a few weeks.

The task, she says, turned out to be revelatory. 

"What it demonstrated was that you have to look at something over and over again until you see it differently," she told Gina Kaufmann on KCUR's Central Standard

Farrar never could have guessed then just how useful that lesson would turn out to be in a career that has taken a striking professional turn. 

The story of Summer Farrar, an artist whose current project is exonerating the wrongly convicted using microscopic hair comparison analysis. How an artist ended up in the mix, and what she brings to the table.


Age Is Relative

Sep 29, 2015
U.S. Army MWR / Flickr

The quest for immortality, or at least longer than we've got, is the stuff of science fiction. But the scientific community has plenty to say about the reality of extending the human lifespan. A glimpse at the future of aging, plus ethical and practical implications of living longer.


This is the story of a man who built the Garden of Eden in Lucas, Kansas; the man who purchased and cared for the sculpture environment nearly a century later; and the town whose survival increasingly depends on grassroots art.

Gina Kaufmann / KCUR

Sculptor John Hachmeister remembers the first time he saw the Garden of Eden, a mysterious outdoor sculpture environment built in Lucas, Kansas, right after the Civil War.

It's just the second network TV show that features an Asian-American family. We invite our resident film critic, a lawyer and an actress to review Fresh Off the Boat — and to share their perspectives on Asian-American life in Kansas City.


Adolfo Gustavo Martinez

When Kansas City artist Adolfo Gustavo Martinez lived in Edinburg, Texas, in the 1980s, he spent most Sundays at bars in the border towns listening to live Tex-Mex music.

He recalls with fondness being able to see people grilling and partying just across the Rio Grande River in Mexico.

“The Rio Grande Valley isn’t very wide, probably like a street,” Martinez says. “You could see them right there, right across the river.”

How do artists sell their art — at art fairs, galleries or online? We explore the arts economy in Kansas City with two local artists and a gallery director. Plus, Adolfo Gustavo Martinez discusses his painting, El Sacrificio, which is on display at The Late Show.


A panel of local journalists discusses the history of women in media and challenges that they've faced.


Courtesy photo / Nature's Own Health Market

Before it was a grocery store, the small space at the corner of 43rd and Main streets housed, over the years, a drugstore, a coffee shop that hosted live music, a Whole Foods and a Wild Oats.

For the past five years, it’s been the home to Nature’s Own Health Market.

The corner grocery store holds a special place in the hearts of many Kansas Citians, as Mary Jo Draper recently discovered.

Alex Smith / KCUR

For many Catholics, Pope Francis' visit to the United States provides a thrilling chance to see the church’s highest leader in the flesh. 

But in Kansas City, Kansas, the Strawberry Hill Museum and Cultural Center still celebrates and remembers a previous pope’s trip to the United States — specifically how he rested during the trip.

On display is the former air travel bed of Pope John Paul II, which is now classified as a relic.

Papal Report

Sep 22, 2015

As Pope Francis heads to the Unites States, the Kansas City-based National Catholic Reporter gears up for a big three days. The story and editorial philosophy of the paper, including a new approach to covering a new pope. Bonus: a papal relic in Strawberry Hill.


  • Dennis Coday, editor, National Catholic Reporter
  • Caitlin Hendel, CEO, National Catholic Reporter

A local blogger has collected and published photographs of the little corner grocery stores that used to fill Kansas City's midtown neighborhoods. It elicited a passionate response. What is it about the history and demise of mom n' pop groceries that touches a nerve?


Pain. It's not the most uplifting topic, in fact it hurts, but it's universal... and throughout time, philosophers have found value in it. Our meditation on pain starts with a dance.


Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

"The Story of a Song" is monthly segment on KCUR's Central Standard, in which local musicians tell the story behind a recent song, and explain how it was constructed musically.

Artist: The Popper aka Walter Lee Edwin

The Song: I'm KC

Music Career: The Popper’s been rapping in Kansas City since 1996, straddling some of Kansas City’s different hip-hop scenes.

The Story: After a few days in jail early this summer, Edwin was on house arrest and wrote and recorded a whole album, Write (Right) Thru The Pain, about that experience. With that out of the way, he wrote, recorded and released the summer anthem "I’m KC" in a matter of days. 

Arnold Gatilao/Flickr -- CC

Arepas, pupusas, pão de queijo … there’s more to Latin American food than massive burritos and hard-shell tacos.

Beyond Burritos

Sep 18, 2015

We explore KC's diverse Latin American food scene. A local chef shows us how to prepare cactus (and cooks his specialty dish, chicken with cactus, in the studio), then KCUR's Food Critics uncover the best Latin American dishes in and around Kansas City.


In an ideal world, what should teaching be like? Should teachers be philosophers, innovators or ...  computers? We'll hear from teachers, current and former, and an education thinker about the teacher of the future.


Korla Pandit was a musical prodigy who had his own TV show in the 1950s. He claimed to be from New Delhi, India and shaped Americans' ideas about Indian music, but he actually grew up in Columbia, Missouri, with black parents.