Community

Up to Date
9:00 am
Thu July 10, 2014

Safety Issues Arise As Drivers Must Keep On Truckin'

Driver fatigue is a safety problem in the trucking industry.
Credit Amanda Bengtson / Flickr-CC

Trucks crisscross the country every day to keep the economy pumping, but recent accidents involving driver fatigue have some re-examining trucking regulation.

On Thursday's Up to Date, we talk about the pressures weighing on long-haul truckers and how the demands they face can push them to drive when it’s really not safe.

Guests:

  • Todd Spencer, executive vice president at OOIDA
  • Jeff Burns, attorney at Dollar, Burns & Becker Trial Attorneys
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Beyond Our Borders
12:52 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

The Story Behind Kansas City's House Of Cards

As a part of a community effort to eliminate neighborhood eyesores, artists transformed this abandoned apartment building into a house of cards in 2012.
Cara McClain KCUR

Have you ever driven through the Historic Northeast neighborhood in Kansas City, Mo., and seen a building with playing cards instead of windows? 

That's the house of cards, an abandoned apartment building at 7th and Indiana streets, that community members used to create public art. After a couple of years of dormancy, there's now some renewed interest to continue the effort.

Here's the story of how that project began: 

A couple years back, the Historic Northeast neighborhood in Kansas City, Mo., had a problem.

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Up To Date
4:55 pm
Tue July 8, 2014

The True Life Of Kansas City Zookeepers

Sitting Gorilla at the Kansas City Zoo
Credit Butterflyxoeio / Flickr Creative Commons

So, you like animals? You enjoy watching them, taking care of them, and talking about them? Would you make a good zookeeper? Guest Host Brian Ellison takes a look at the true life of Kansas City Zoo zookeepers on Tuesday's Up to Date. Find out what it's really like to chase a fugitive chimpanzee and keep the penguins healthy and happy in their habitat. Speaking of penguins, you can watch the penguins at the Kansas City Zoo live right here.

Guests:

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Community
3:50 pm
Tue July 8, 2014

Immigrants Bring Power Soccer To Kansas City's Historic Northeast

Angel Ponce, of Mexico, Jean-Luc Kamin, of the Ivory Coast, and Soemoe Oo, of Burma, all play soccer with Coach Foday Kamara.
Laura Ziegler KCUR

Coach Foday Kamara is proud that countries in the World Cup are represented among the immigrants living in the Historic Northeast neighborhood in Kansas City, Mo.

Kamara — an immigrant from Sierra Leone - has been in the United States for nine years. He was a professional soccer player before he came. 

Now he's trying to form a soccer league in Kansas City's Historic Northeast. He says the area's diverse population lends itself to some excellent soccer.

"Everybody here is playing soccer." Kamara says. "All the immigrants ... (grew up) playing soccer."

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Community
11:47 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Kansas City’s Former GOP Convention Hopes Go To Cleveland

The Republican National Convention in 2016 will take place in Cleveland, a selection committee announced Tuesday
Credit truthout.org

Kansas City’s ex-suitor, the Republican National Convention, has selected Cleveland to host the 2016 conference.

Kansas City had been in the running for the GOP event through late June, when the convention dubbed Cleveland and Dallas as finalists, knocking Kansas City out of consideration.  

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Sports
9:41 am
Tue July 8, 2014

Missouri 340 Canoe Race Postponed Due To Flooding

Contestants at the 2007 Missouri 340 race cast off from Kansas City on a long journey to St. Charles.
Credit Marek Uliasz / Flickr-CC

For hundreds of paddlers, the Missouri 340 race is a true test of endurance, but flooding along the Missouri River has put the competition on hold.

The popular canoe race runs 340 miles from Kansas City to St. Charles. Organizers said they felt that heightened water levels would introduce too much debris and keep racers from being able to reach shore when they needed a break. 

Scott Mansker, race director, says postponing the race isn't ideal because people already have taken time off work to race. But the delay ultimately won't kill the competition, he says.

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Up To Date
4:39 pm
Mon July 7, 2014

History And Future of Kansas City Scottish Rite Temple

Kansas City Scottish Rite Building located at the intersection of Paseo and Linwood Boulevard.
Credit Mlaaker / Flickr-CC

When you think of the Masons, images of secret societies and rituals may come to mind—but what about their architecture?

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Tell KCUR
3:17 pm
Mon July 7, 2014

Tell KCUR: What’s Something That Kansas City Needs? Why?

What's something that Kansas City needs? Tweet your answers with the #TellKCUR hashtag.
Credit KCUR

Whether or not you call Kansas City home or are just passing through, chances are you have some advice for the city.

Well, at least these redditors do. Last month, this Reddit thread, asking, “What’s something that Kansas City needs?” generated nearly 300 comments.

Answers ranged from “a decent bowling alley” to “quality schools” to “curbside glass recycling.”

We want to know how our audience would like to improve the metro area, as well.

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Beyond Our Borders
3:45 pm
Thu July 3, 2014

How Residents Turned Things Around In Kansas City's Ivanhoe Neighborhood

Margaret May helped host KCUR's community listening session with the Ivanhoe neighborhood.
Credit Alyson Raletz / KCUR

Few neighborhoods in Kansas City. Mo., have faced as many problems as the Ivanhoe neighborhood in the city's urban core.

Crime, drug houses, frequent vacancy, and trash buildup have plagued the area for decades, but neighborhood residents have been working towards change. 

Ivanhoe Neighborhood Council Executive Director Margaret May has worked in the neighborhood since 2001, and has seen it blossom as residents like Ida Dockery take ownership and responsibility for cleaning it up.

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Tell KCUR
10:51 am
Thu July 3, 2014

Kansas Citians: 50 Years After The Civil Rights Act, We Still Have A Long Road

Marriage equality was a common issue Kansas Citians cited when we asked, "What are today's biggest challenges for civil rights?"
Credit Wikimedia -- CC

Wednesday marked the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

As a country, we’ve since made progress on equal protections laws — not as much as some would’ve hoped — and new issues have emerged.

This week, we took to the airwaves and social media and asked: What are today’s biggest challenges for civil rights?

Discrimination based on race remains a hot-button issue, according to your answers.

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Central Standard
4:57 pm
Wed July 2, 2014

Reflecting On The Civil Rights Act Of 1964

Civil Rights March in Alabama
Credit Peter Pettus

July 2nd is the 50th anniversary of The Civil Rights Act of 1964. This historic piece of legislation outlawed race based discrimination, enfranchised voter registration rights, and desegregated businesses, public spaces, and schools.

On Wednesday's Central Standard, Rev. Nelson "Fuzzy" Thompson and Anita Dixon share their unique first hand experiences with the Civil Rights Movement in and around Kansas City, then and now.

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Holiday
12:26 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Your Guide To Fourth Of July Festivities In Kansas City

KC Riverfest fireworks light up the Missouri River next to the Christopher Bond Bridge to celebrate the Fourth of July.
Credit MoDOT Photos / Flickr-CC

Whether you're rocking a Stars and Stripes jumpsuit or merely soaking in the patriotic atmosphere, Independence Day is a time for celebration.

But with so many displays, parades, and other festivities, it can be a little daunting to decide just how to celebrate.

That is why we've decided to plan out your itinerary for the entire day. Here are some of the best places in the metro area to make your Fourth of July a real humdinger:

Morning activities

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Beyond Our Borders
11:19 am
Tue July 1, 2014

Neighborhoods In Kansas City's Historic Northeast Move Beyond City Ordinance

Neighborhoods say there are hundreds of homeless camps throughout the woods along historic Cliff Drive.
Credit Laura Ziegler

The Historic Northeast has a concentration of social services such as soup kitchens, shelters and health centers.

And the services tend to draw large numbers of the homeless to the area.

During the past year and a half, residents have been organizing to deal with some of the accompanying issues, like excess trash, sanitation and property damage. 

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Up to Date
10:45 am
Tue July 1, 2014

Kansas City's TEDxKC Challenges You To Participate

Credit TEDxKC

Since 2009, Kansas City has hosted its own extension of the TED lecture series, TEDxKC. This year, something new has been introduced: members of the public are invited to submit their own lecture ideas, for the chance to win a place in the lineup of presenters.

On Tuesday's Up to Date we talk about this year's TEDxKC - this year's theme, the challenge, why a spot on stage is up for grabs, and how you can participate.

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Community
10:33 am
Tue July 1, 2014

Kansas City-St. Joe Diocese To Pay $1.1M For Failing To Report Abuse

The Kansas City-St. Joesph Catholic Diocese has been ordered to pay $1.1 million to victims for failing to follow through on their promise to improve how they deal with sexual abuse.

The ruling from an arbitrator says the diocese is responsible for the damages after concluding that it did not promptly report a priest who had produced child pornography, the New York Times reports.

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Tell KCUR
9:38 am
Tue July 1, 2014

Tell KCUR: What Are Today’s Biggest Challenges For Civil Rights?

What are today's biggest challenges for civil rights and how can we overcome them? Tweet us your answers with the #TellKCUR hashtag.
Credit File photo / KCUR

As Kansas Citians gear up for a holiday weekend celebrating the United States’ Independence Day, civil rights advocates also are commemorating another event in our country’s history.

Fifty years ago this week, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 into law, ending, among other things, the existence of “whites only” bathrooms and drinking fountains.

A lot has changed since 1964.

We want to know what civil rights issues the United States and Kansas City still face today.

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LGBT Rights
2:59 pm
Mon June 30, 2014

Douglas County Grants Same-Sex Divorces Despite State Ban On Same-Sex Marriages

A couple holds their marriage license in Iowa, a state where same-sex couples can go to get legally married.
Credit Alan C. / Flickr-CC

Kansas' constitutional ban on gay marriage hasn't stopped same-sex couples from getting divorced in Douglas County.  

On Monday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske sat down with David Brown, a family lawyer in Lawrence who has personally helped two same-sex couples divorce. 

Brown says that the Kansas state constitution has to do with public policy, not the court's legal recognition of gay marriage.

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Tell KCUR
4:39 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

Kansas Citians: Keep The Chiefs Name, But Ditch The Tomahawk Chop

Many Kansas Citians defended the Chiefs name, but said fan rituals and clothing tied to American Indians, such as headdresses and the tomahawk chop, were offensive.
Credit Jeremy Brooks / Flickr--CC

 As controversy surrounding the Washington Redskins’ name shines a light on Kansas City’s professional football team, many Kansas Citians are sticking by the Chiefs.

The Tomahawk Chop, a popular fan ritual at games, is another matter, however.

When the Redskins lost their trademark because of American Indian claims that the name disparages them, the debate tied to the appropriateness of the Chiefs came back to life.  

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Community
2:18 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

How Would You ‘Make Me Beautiful?’

Here's the original, unaltered photo of Esther Honig. Now, use your photo-editing skills and send us your "beautiful" version of this photo.
Credit Courtesy photo / estherhonig.com

When our contributor, Esther Honig, asked graphic artists at 25 countries to “make me beautiful,” she didn’t expect her cross-cultural examination of beauty to go viral.

Using Photoshop, the artists all manipulated Honig’s raw image to their country’s ideal. (See a slideshow.)  

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Central Standard
1:52 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

Food Critics: Best Unleaded Drinks In Kansas City

The Food Critics have plenty of favorite refreshing summer drinks in the Kansas City area.
Credit Mitch Altman / Flickr-CC

The dog days of summer are upon us and everyone is looking for good ways to keep cool. Though cocktails might do the trick, not everyone wants to get intoxicated while they sip a cold drink.

On Friday's Central Standard, guest host Charles Ferruzza is joined by the Food Critics to find out where the best refreshing non-alcoholic drinks in the Kansas City area are. 

Here are their picks:

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Community
11:28 am
Fri June 27, 2014

KCUR To Expand News Coverage With Kauffman Grant

Nico Leone, KCUR general manager
Credit File photo

KCUR plans to ramp up its coverage of education and entrepreneurship after a financial boost from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the University of Missouri-Kansas City announced Friday.

The $100,000 grant from the Kansas City-based Kauffman Foundation will help KCUR increase the number of in-depth stories it produces “on two important topics, which touch the majority of Kansas City-area residents,” KCUR General Manager Nico Leone said in a written statement.

Leone said KCUR plans to hire at least one additional reporter as a result of the grant.

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Beyond Our Borders
10:37 am
Fri June 27, 2014

School Slated For Demolition In The Historic Northeast Gets Community Support

Community leaders in the Historic Northeast want to preserve the 115-year-old Thacher School off Independence Avenue. But the district is ready to demolish the school, which closed in 2009.
Credit Elle Moxley / KCUR

A rusted metal "No Trespassing" sign hangs on a post outside the boarded-up Thacher School in the Historic Northeast in Kansas City, Mo.

On the other side of the tall fence, the grass is neatly trimmed and the empty parking lot is litter-free. The brick exterior, once a popular canvas for graffiti artists, has been scrubbed mostly clean. A single blue doodle is the only evidence of vandalism neighbors say was once common at the vacant school.

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Community
4:21 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Kansas City Woman's Project On Beauty Standards Goes Viral

Argentina
Esther Honig estherhonig.com

This week, KCUR freelancer Esther Honig had a giant shock when her project Before & After, a cross-cultural examination of beauty, went viral.

Honig sent an unaltered image of herself to freelance graphic artists in more than 25 countries and asked them to perform one task: make her beautiful. The result is more than 40 images that together tell a complex story of global standards of beauty. And the response has been enormous.

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Community
4:10 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Going To Kansas City: Retiring As A Chief

Credit file photo

Wide receiver Eddie Kennison played in the NFL for the New Orleans Saints, Chicago Bears, St. Louis Rams and Denver Broncos before ending up as free agent for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2001. This move upset many Broncos fans who are division rivals with the Chiefs, but Kennison says that when he moved to Kansas City he felt right at home. Kennison signed a ceremonial contract with The Chiefs in 2010 so he could retire as a member of the team.

Here is more about Kennison and his "Going to Kansas City" story:

Name: Eddie Kennison

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Central Standard
3:10 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Let's Talk About Death, Baby

At the Death Cafe, conversations about mortality are an important part of a life well-lived.
Credit Will Taylor / Flickr, Creative Commons

It's one of life's great inevitables, and we don't mean taxes.

Death Cafes, where people get together to hang out and talk about death and dying, have started popping up in cities worldwide. Locally, we have two Death Cafes: one in St. Joseph, Mo. and another in Kansas City, Mo. 

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Economy
12:34 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Johnson County Ranked One Of The 'Easiest' Places To Live In U.S.

This map from The New York Times ranks counties based on quality of life indicators such as median household income and obesity rate.
Credit The Upshot / The New York Times

Johnson County, Kan., is one of the easiest places to live in the United States, according to a new study by The New York Times

The New York Times ranked counties based on six criteria: education, unemployment rate, median household income, disability rate, life expectancy and obesity rate.

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Central Standard
11:42 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Balloon Launch Combines Space Exploration And A Treasure Hunt

Volunteers keep the balloon steady as Paul Verhage prepares for launch.
Credit Christina Lieffring

For Bill Brown, the “father” of high altitude ballooning, it all started when he saw a documentary of a man who parachuted from 100,000 feet above ground.

“The description he gave of being able to see for hundreds of miles in all directions and see the blackness of space and the curve of the earth … I wanted to see that for myself,” he said. “Some people strapped a bunch of balloons to a lawn chair, but that seemed a little risky, so I decided to come up with a camera and a small video camera to put up in a small weather balloon.”

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Community
6:38 am
Thu June 26, 2014

World Cup Is A Mix Of Sport And Mourning For Kansas City's South Korean Community

Gwon Cheol Paek (left) and Sejun Song (right) show off their Korea team t-shirts as they watchi the Korea soccer team play Algeria at Chopsticks restaurant in Overland Park, Kan.
Credit Suzanne Hogan / KCUR

Most of the World Cup attention Thursday will be on the U.S. game against Germany. But there will be some Kansas City-area residents who will have their attention on South Korea’s game against Belgium.

Little Korea in Kansas

Tucked away off 103rd  St. and Metcalf Avenue, in a strip mall in Overland Park, Kan., there is a concentration of South Korean businesses where people gather to watch soccer.

“Kansas doesn’t have like a Korea town,” says David Ahn. “So this is kind of considered like a Korea Town.”

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Up to Date
11:02 am
Wed June 25, 2014

St. Michael's Gives Homeless Vets Transitional Housing, Counseling

St. Michael's Veterans Center provides transitional living quarters for homeless veterans.
Credit Jonathan Greenwald / Flickr-CC

It's difficult to go from living on the street to living in what most of us consider to be normal housing. That's a real challenge many homeless vets face.

On Wednesday's Up to Date, we talk about the St. Michael Center and how it's helping veterans make that difficult life transition.

Guests:

  • Eric Verzola, director of Veterans Services Catholic Charities of Kansas City-St. Joseph
  • Art Fillmore, St. Michael’s Veterans Center Board Member
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Central Standard
3:46 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

KC Police Chief Darryl Forté On Response Times, His Faith And Social Media

Kansas City Police Chief Darryl Forté visited with Gina Kaufmann about some of the problems that Kansas City faces.
Credit KMBC

When Darryl Forté was sworn in as Kansas City Police Department chief in 2011, it was a landmark moment. 

Forté is the first African American to lead the police department in the city's history.

Since then, Forté and the rest of the police department have had their hands full, with homicide rates that have routinely ranked within the top 10 worst cities in America

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