Frank Morris http://kcur.org en World's Tallest Water Slide Opens In Kansas City, Kansas http://kcur.org/post/worlds-tallest-water-slide-opens-kansas-city-kansas <p>After much ado, the world’s tallest water slide is now open to the public. Verrückt — which is German for insane, by the way — plunges 17 stories to take the record, previously held for more than a decade by a giant slide in Brazil.</p><p>Design problems repeatedly pushed back the launch. We figured, since no one in their right mind would be one of the first to ride it, we’d send Frank Morris down it.</p><p><strong>The approach to the slide</strong></p> Thu, 10 Jul 2014 22:17:35 +0000 Frank Morris 58701 at http://kcur.org World's Tallest Water Slide Opens In Kansas City, Kansas Kansas City World Cup Watch Events Spawn Serious Soccer Fans http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-world-cup-watch-events-spawn-serious-soccer-fans <p>At least 13,000 fans chanting “I believe that we will win!” jammed the central common area of the Power &amp; Light District in downtown Kansas City, Mo., to cheer on the U.S. men's soccer team Tuesday in their World Cup match against Belgium.</p><p>Many were literally waving the American flag. Even more were wearing it.</p><p>Miguel Torres, in a red-white-and-blue top hat, beads and body paint, came out to support the country as much as the team.</p> Wed, 02 Jul 2014 17:18:36 +0000 Frank Morris 58279 at http://kcur.org Kansas City World Cup Watch Events Spawn Serious Soccer Fans Kansas City Out Of Running For 2016 GOP Convention http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-out-running-2016-gop-convention <p><strong>Update, 1:10 p.m.</strong></p><p>The Republican National Committee announced Wednesday that Cleveland, Ohio, and Dallas, Texas, were finalists to host the 2016 Republican Convention. Kansas City and Denver have been eliminated.</p> Wed, 25 Jun 2014 12:40:33 +0000 Maria Carter, Frank Morris & Briana O'Higgins 57883 at http://kcur.org Kansas City Out Of Running For 2016 GOP Convention Report: Kansas City Economy Lags Behind That Of Other U.S. Cities http://kcur.org/post/report-kansas-city-economy-lags-behind-other-us-cities <p>The Mid-America Regional Council presented a sobering assessment of the Kansas City area economy Thursday, one showing the metro is having trouble bouncing back from the recession.</p><p>The report, called "Prosperity at the Crossroads," says that fewer than half of the 100 largest metropolitan areas, including the greater Kansas City region, had recovered all the jobs they lost during the recession by the end of 2013.&nbsp;</p><p>D<span style="line-height: 1.5;">ata in the report show that Kansas City employment rates, wage growth and job growth are all down.</span></p> Thu, 12 Jun 2014 20:42:42 +0000 Frank Morris 57234 at http://kcur.org Report: Kansas City Economy Lags Behind That Of Other U.S. Cities Cantor Upset May Enliven Tea Party Challenge To Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts http://kcur.org/post/cantor-upset-may-enliven-tea-party-challenge-kansas-sen-pat-roberts <p>U.S. House Majority leader Eric Cantor’s <a href="http://kcur.org/post/eric-cantors-collapse-what-happened">primary defeat this week</a> could revitalize a challenge to Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas.&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">Roberts faces a <a href="http://kcur.org/post/tea-partys-milton-wolf-challenge-us-senator-roberts">Tea Party backed primary challenge from Milton Wolf</a>. </span></p> Thu, 12 Jun 2014 13:02:42 +0000 Frank Morris 57183 at http://kcur.org Alleged Jewish Community Center Assailant Faces Additional Charges http://kcur.org/post/alleged-jewish-community-center-assailant-faces-additional-charges <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Prosecutors have charged the neo-Nazi accused of </span><a href="http://kcur.org/post/updated-victims-suspect-identified-overland-park-shootings" style="line-height: 1.5;">killing three people at Jewish facilities in Overland Park, Kan., last month</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> with several more felonies.</span></p><p>The Johnson County District Attorney’s office says Frazier Glenn Miller shot at and tried to kill three additional people, endangered a fourth and fired into the Jewish Community Center knowing there were people inside.</p> Tue, 27 May 2014 20:39:21 +0000 Frank Morris 56401 at http://kcur.org Alleged Jewish Community Center Assailant Faces Additional Charges Kansas City Advances To Final 4 In Republican Convention Bid http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-advances-final-4-republican-convention-bid <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Kansas City has survived another round in the competition to host the 2016 Republican National&nbsp;Convention (RNC). &nbsp;</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The three other contenders are Cleveland, Dallas and Denver. Las Vegas and Cincinnati dropped out Thursday afternoon. </span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Kansas City Mayor Sly James says RNC site selection scouts clearly like what they see in Kansas City. &nbsp;</span></p> Fri, 23 May 2014 12:57:04 +0000 Frank Morris 56201 at http://kcur.org Kansas City Advances To Final 4 In Republican Convention Bid Kansas City Still In The Hunt For 2016 Republican National Convention http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-still-hunt-2016-republican-national-convention <p></p><p>Kansas City has made the final four in the competition to host the 2016 Republican National Convention.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>The convention selection committee pared the number of contenders today by two, knocking Las Vegas and Cincinnati from the list. That would leave Cleveland, Dallas and Denver still in the running with Kansas City.</p><p>All four cities will receive site visits in June.</p><p>City officials say hosting the nominating convention would generate hundreds of millions of dollars for Kansas City and the surrounding area.</p> Thu, 22 May 2014 19:13:14 +0000 Frank Morris 56176 at http://kcur.org Kansas City Still In The Hunt For 2016 Republican National Convention As Ash Trees Die Off, Kansas City Man Primes New Urban Lumber Industry http://kcur.org/post/ash-trees-die-kansas-city-man-primes-new-urban-lumber-industry <p>Ash trees across much of the country are dying as a result of a green beetle called the emerald ash borer.&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">The bug has spread from the upper Midwest imperiling millions of trees. </span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">But there is opportunity amid the destruction. Urban lumber mills that saw up salvaged city trees are on the rise, fertilized by mounting demand for local products and a tsunami of supply delivered by the emerald ash borer.</span></p><p><strong style="line-height: 1.5;">It came from Asia, by way of Michigan</strong></p> Thu, 22 May 2014 13:23:05 +0000 Frank Morris 56150 at http://kcur.org As Ash Trees Die Off, Kansas City Man Primes New Urban Lumber Industry Greensburg, Kansas Recovers From Twister Only To Face An Economic EF5 http://kcur.org/post/greensburg-kansas-recovers-twister-only-face-economic-ef5 <p style="margin-left:.5in;">A massive EF5 tornado all but obliterated Greensburg, Kan., on May 4, 2007. Afterwards, city leaders saw a blank slate, a chance to reverse decades of decline by building a town for the future.</p><p style="margin-left:.5in;">Greensburg’s green building initiative, drew big money, and lots of volunteer help. But now Greensburg faces a crossroads. The town is stuck at half its pre-tornado population with few prospects for growth. Some blame trends slowly decimating most farm towns, others find fault with the green initiative.&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;</p> Wed, 30 Apr 2014 12:58:22 +0000 Frank Morris 54981 at http://kcur.org Greensburg, Kansas Recovers From Twister Only To Face An Economic EF5 Kansas City’s Auto Assembly Sector Revs Up With New Parts Plant http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-s-auto-assembly-sector-revs-new-parts-plant <p>Kansas City’s thriving auto-assembly sector notched another win Thursday, as the Canadian company Martinrea broke ground on a new parts plant in Riverside.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>Martinrea says it will hire as many as 290 people to crank out front end parts for the Malibu that GM builds by the thousands across the river from Riverside, in Fairfax. The company will reportedly see more than $3 million in state incentives. But Kansas City Area Development Council CEO Bob Marcus says, auto parts manufacturers are moving here for another good reason.</p> Fri, 25 Apr 2014 12:44:45 +0000 Frank Morris 54739 at http://kcur.org Chelsea Or Bradley, Inmate Manning Is Still Inmate Manning http://kcur.org/post/chelsea-or-bradley-inmate-manning-still-inmate-manning <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A Judge in Leavenworth, Kan., has allowed Bradley Manning, who’s serving time in the Army prison there for espionage, to change her name to Chelsea Elizabeth Manning.</span></p><p>Army specialists say Manning, has gender dysphoria; while physically a man, Manning identifies as a woman. Pentagon spokesman George Wright says Wednesday's brief court hearing won’t change Manning’s treatment in the all-male U.S. disciplinary barracks.</p> Thu, 24 Apr 2014 12:40:12 +0000 Frank Morris 54674 at http://kcur.org Kansas City Stands With Overland Park During Service Honoring Shooting Victims http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-stands-overland-park-during-service-honoring-shooting-victims <p>A diverse crowd linked arms in Overland Park, Kan., on Thursday to remember the three victims of an attack on a Jewish community center and retirement home.</p><p>Clergy representing many faiths, politicians of different stripes and more than 1,300 people from the community united to condemn shootings during the memorial service.</p><p>The service took place at the Jewish Community Center, where two of three victims died on Sunday.</p><p>U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said the whole country was standing with Overland Park.</p> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 18:53:00 +0000 Frank Morris 54340 at http://kcur.org Kansas City Stands With Overland Park During Service Honoring Shooting Victims Suspected Shooter In JCC Attacks Has 30-Year History Of Hate http://kcur.org/post/suspected-shooter-jcc-attacks-has-30-year-history-hate <p style="margin-left:1.0in;">The man suspected of killing three people at two Jewish facilities in Johnson County, Kan., is a well-known neo-Nazi and someone who authorities say spent much of his life calling for attacks on Jews.</p><p style="margin-left:1.0in;">Frazier Glenn Cross, Jr. faces state murder charges and likely hate crime charges in federal court, after allegedly murdering three people in shootings at the Jewish Community Center and Village Shalom assisted living center in Overland Park, Kan., Sunday.</p> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 23:16:13 +0000 Frank Morris 54183 at http://kcur.org Suspected Shooter In JCC Attacks Has 30-Year History Of Hate UPDATED: Victims, Suspect Identified In Overland Park Shootings http://kcur.org/post/updated-victims-suspect-identified-overland-park-shootings <p><strong>Updated 10:47 a.m.: </strong></p><p>Frazier Glenn Cross, the suspect in Sunday's shootings, is being held at the Johnson County Detention Center without bond. Kristi Bergeron, of the District Attorney's Office in Johnson County said he will not be arraigned Monday.</p><p>He will face both federal and state charges.</p><p><strong>Updated 10:36 a.m.: </strong></p><p>The Children's Center for the Visually Impaired released this statement:</p> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 21:02:29 +0000 Laura Spencer, Frank Morris & Laura Ziegler 54127 at http://kcur.org UPDATED: Victims, Suspect Identified In Overland Park Shootings Area Governments Pool Resources To Bring The 2016 GOP Convention To KC http://kcur.org/post/area-governments-pool-resources-bring-2016-gop-convention-kc <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Kansas City is going after the 2016 Republican nominating convention but the city won't go it alone. Four local governments have put some skin in the game.</span></p><p>Johnson County, Wyandotte County’s Unified Government, Kansas City and Jackson County are in for $65,000 each. Kansas City’s contribution follows $100,000 of city Convention and Visitor’s money - a small ante, Mayor Sly James says, for what could be a big payoff if Republicans stage their convention here.</p> Fri, 11 Apr 2014 01:16:01 +0000 Frank Morris 54019 at http://kcur.org Area Governments Pool Resources To Bring The 2016 GOP Convention To KC Lesser Prairie Chicken Threatened Species Listing Ruffles Feathers in Kansas http://kcur.org/post/lesser-prairie-chicken-threatened-species-listing-ruffles-feathers-kansas <p style="margin-left:.5in;"><span style="line-height: 1.5;">It's prairie chicken mating season! </span></p><p style="margin-left:.5in;"><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Still, it's tough being a lesser prairie chicken these days.</span></p><p style="margin-left:.5in;"><span style="line-height: 1.5;">This type of grouse once spanned an enormous area, though now they survive mainly in pockets of Oklahoma and Kansas. Their numbers are plummeting; in 2012, the population dropped by half.</span></p> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 12:41:30 +0000 Frank Morris 53953 at http://kcur.org Lesser Prairie Chicken Threatened Species Listing Ruffles Feathers in Kansas Federal Plan To Save Prairie Chickens Ruffles State Feathers http://kcur.org/post/federal-plan-save-prairie-chickens-ruffles-state-feathers It's prairie chicken mating season!<p>Still, it's tough being a lesser prairie chicken these days. This type of grouse once spanned an enormous area, though now they survive mainly in pockets of Oklahoma and Kansas. Their numbers are plummeting; in 2012, the population dropped by half.<p>But after they were recently listed as a threatened species by the U.S. Wed, 09 Apr 2014 21:27:00 +0000 Frank Morris 53947 at http://kcur.org Federal Plan To Save Prairie Chickens Ruffles State Feathers New Kansas City Store Serves Up Midwestern Pride http://kcur.org/post/new-kansas-city-store-serves-midwestern-pride <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">It’s not hard to find stores catering to people proud of their schools or sports teams, but a shop opening this week in Kansas City, Mo., called Raygun, is all about a perennial underdog: the Midwest.</span></p><p>Owner&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">Mike Draper&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">is from Iowa, and this will be his first store outside his home state. </span></p> Wed, 02 Apr 2014 10:26:00 +0000 Frank Morris 53497 at http://kcur.org New Kansas City Store Serves Up Midwestern Pride Committee Recommends Excluding Brookside From Proposed Streetcar Line http://kcur.org/post/committee-recommends-excluding-brookside-proposed-streetcar-line <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Kansas City’s Streetcar Advisory Committee is recommending that a proposed southern expansion of the new system end at</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;</span>UMKC<span style="line-height: 1.5;">.&nbsp;</span></p> Tue, 25 Mar 2014 22:06:30 +0000 Frank Morris 53197 at http://kcur.org Committee Recommends Excluding Brookside From Proposed Streetcar Line Westboro Baptist Founder Fred Phelps Dead At 84 http://kcur.org/post/westboro-baptist-founder-fred-phelps-dead-84 <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Rev. Fred</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Phelps Sr., founder of the controversial </span>Westboro<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Baptist Church, died around midnight Thursday.&nbsp;</span></p><p>For almost 24 years, Phelps and his small group of followers have made themselves infamous for leading anti-gay demonstrations at natural disasters, mass killings and funerals.</p><p>In his mind, Phelps said in a 2006 interview, every catastrophe, attack or misfortune was God’s retribution for America’s failure to castigate gays.</p> Thu, 20 Mar 2014 16:23:25 +0000 Frank Morris 52941 at http://kcur.org Westboro Baptist Founder Fred Phelps Dead At 84 Lawsuit Tests Missouri Gun Shop’s Liability In Pistol Sale To Mentally Ill Woman http://kcur.org/post/lawsuit-tests-missouri-gun-shop-s-liability-pistol-sale-mentally-ill-woman <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The <a href="http://www.bradycampaign.org/bradycenter">Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence</a> is suing on behalf of Janet </span>Delana<span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">from Wellington, Mo., who is the mother</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> of a mentally ill woman who used a gun to murder her father.</span></p> Thu, 13 Mar 2014 15:07:54 +0000 Frank Morris 52582 at http://kcur.org Lawsuit Tests Missouri Gun Shop’s Liability In Pistol Sale To Mentally Ill Woman Is Kansas City The Best Place To Be Rescued From Human Trafficking? http://kcur.org/post/kansas-city-best-place-be-rescued-human-trafficking <p></p> Wed, 12 Mar 2014 17:22:52 +0000 Frank Morris 52521 at http://kcur.org Is Kansas City The Best Place To Be Rescued From Human Trafficking? Sprint Chairman Takes Case For T-Mobile Merger To The Public http://kcur.org/post/sprint-chairman-takes-case-t-mobile-merger-public <p>Masayoshi<span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;Son, SoftBank Corp. CEO and c</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">hairman of Overland Park-based Sprint Corp.,&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">promises lower prices and faster service — if he’s allowed to buy T-Mobile.</span></p><p style="margin-left:.5in;">Son, who heads Sprint’s parent company SoftBank, says merging Sprint with T-Mobile would create a stronger competitor to the big guys, Verizon Wireless and AT&amp;T Inc.</p> Wed, 12 Mar 2014 12:45:19 +0000 Frank Morris 52501 at http://kcur.org Sprint Chairman Takes Case For T-Mobile Merger To The Public Missouri Among States Suing California Over Henhouse Restrictions http://kcur.org/post/missouri-among-states-suing-california-over-henhouse-restrictions <p></p><p></p><p>By most measures David Kesten's hens are living the good life.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">"They can act like chickens, they can run around," says </span>Kesten<span style="line-height: 1.5;">, who's raising hens in an old wooden shed in the open countryside near Concordia, Mo. "They can go out and catch bugs, they can dig in the ground."</span></p><p>But most U.S. hens live crammed into very close quarters, according to Joe Maxwell, with the Humane Society of the U.S. And he says that's just wrong.</p> Fri, 07 Mar 2014 15:18:34 +0000 Frank Morris 52279 at http://kcur.org Missouri Among States Suing California Over Henhouse Restrictions 'Free State Serenade': Chuck Mead’s Ode To The Dark Side Of Kansas http://kcur.org/post/free-state-serenade-chuck-mead-s-ode-dark-side-kansas <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Musician Chuck Mead has made a name for himself in Nashville, but his new album is all about his home state of Kansas. Mead describes the music in&nbsp;</span><em><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Free State Serenade&nbsp;</span></em><span style="line-height: 1.5;">as “Kansas Noir… true stories of love, murder, and a UFO."</span></p> Tue, 04 Mar 2014 14:35:29 +0000 Frank Morris 52094 at http://kcur.org 'Free State Serenade': Chuck Mead’s Ode To The Dark Side Of Kansas X-rays Expose Problem For Milton Wolf’s U.S. Senate Campaign http://kcur.org/post/x-rays-expose-problem-milton-wolf-s-us-senate-campaign <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Milton Wolf has been mounting a strong primary challenge for the seat currently held by Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts. But a recent <a href="http://cjonline.com/news/state/2014-02-22/doctors-x-ray-postings-unsettling">expose by the Topeka Capital-Journal of Facebook posts made by Wolf</a> has some questioning whether he will be able to continue the race.</span></p> Tue, 25 Feb 2014 20:37:24 +0000 Frank Morris 51797 at http://kcur.org X-rays Expose Problem For Milton Wolf’s U.S. Senate Campaign All The Songs On The New Chuck Mead Album Are About Kansas http://kcur.org/post/all-songs-new-chuck-mead-album-are-about-kansas <p>Chuck Mead left Kansas more than two decades ago when he set out for Nashville and made a name for himself in country music. Now he’s circling back to Kansas, where his career began.</p><p>The first group he formed there, BR549, started out as the house band at <a href="http://robertswesternworld.com/">Robert’s Western World</a> on Lower Broadway in Nashville, just across the alley from Ryman Auditorium, the original home of the Grand Ole Opry. &nbsp;BR549 quickly built a huge following playing regularly in the small bar.</p> Thu, 20 Feb 2014 20:54:24 +0000 Frank Morris 51579 at http://kcur.org All The Songs On The New Chuck Mead Album Are About Kansas Winter Storms Trigger Widespread Salt Shortage http://kcur.org/post/winter-storms-trigger-widespread-salt-shortage <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">If you think the roads you’re driving on seem worse than usual this winter, you’re probably right.</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The waves of snowstorms in much of the country have exhausted supplies of rock salt, the main tool that road crews use to melt ice and snow. Even areas with vast quantities of salt underground are having a hard time getting it onto their streets this year.</span></p> Mon, 17 Feb 2014 14:02:17 +0000 Frank Morris 51373 at http://kcur.org Winter Storms Trigger Widespread Salt Shortage William S. Burroughs And Lawrence, Kansas: Linked Inexorably http://kcur.org/post/william-s-burroughs-and-lawrence-kansas-linked-inexorably <p></p><p style="margin-left: 1in;">Wednesday, February 5, marked what would have been the&nbsp;100<sup>th</sup> birthday of one of the&nbsp;20<sup>th</sup> century’s most important and notorious writers: William S. Burroughs.</p><p style="margin-left: 1in;">Burroughs was one of the original Beat poets, and helped spark a cultural revolution. He wrote like no one had before, about topics considered impolite, if not obscene, at the time.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> Wed, 05 Feb 2014 19:45:29 +0000 Frank Morris 50828 at http://kcur.org William S. Burroughs And Lawrence, Kansas: Linked Inexorably