Caitlin Troutman

News Intern

What is the Midwest? In a recent video, comedian Jeff Houghton played a Midwest correspondent out to solve this great mystery. The typical perception? Think Wizard of Oz, and American Gothic ... you know, that old white couple standing in front of a church with a pitchfork, and yellow brick roads.

Really though. What defines the Midwest? What are its borders, and what makes it home? 

Celeste Lindell / Flickr — CC

Last February, the beloved Prairie Village card shop Tiffany Town closed after 52 years. Central Standard's Gina Kaufmann remembered the store as the "aesthetic of childhood in the '80s," and as the place to get birthday gifts for classmates.

Matthew Long-Middleton / KCUR 89.3

On Ces Cru's new song "Purge," Donnie "Godemis" King and Mike "Ubiquitous" Viglione get more political than they have ever been before. Over a menacing and melodic piano, several voices say things like "friends, family, coworkers — all undocumented" and "it's genocide." 

The Pitch

After 37 years, Kansas City's alternative magazine The Pitch will go from weekly issues to monthly. Editor Scott Wilson told KCUR's Gina Kaufmann about the changes Monday on Central Standard.

"The web has changed the way we report," said Wilson. "Things aren't just issue to issue anymore. We'll now get to present long-form journalism, we haven't had the space to do that in a while."

Wilson also emphasized that the publication wouldn't change in "tone or quality."

Valter Weijola / Journal of Mammalogy

Last year, a new species of rat was discovered on Manus Island, part of the Papua New Guinea Admiralty Group, just north of Australia. The discovery gained worldwide attention, including a spot on Discover Magazine's list of top scientific discoveries of 2016, after the scientists who discovered it decided to name it Rattus detentus.

Glenn McCoy / Belleville News-Democrat / Universal Press Syndicate

You might know their opinions — even if you don't know their names.

Political cartoons are a fixture that appear alongside news stories and editorials, providing humorous and absurd commentary on issues and current events.

Cartoonists Lee Judge and Glenn McCoy told Central Standard host Gina Kaufmann that political cartoons have a special place in the world of media.

National Weather Service Pleasant Hill Kansas City/Pleasant Hill / Facebook

"For those wishing for an oak mite apocalypse, you'll get your wish Sunday morning (11/20) when lows hit the mid-20s."

This quip was posted on the National Weather Service's Facebook page last autumn by Forecaster Mike July. Some people have a knack for knowing exactly what an audience is looking for in a weather forecast. For many, July is one of those people.

Smabs Sputzer / Flickr -- CC

A visit to a local olive oil shop, then KCUR's Food Critics search out the best pasta dishes in and around KC.

Plus, the latest news from KC's restaurant scene.

Guests:

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is a much-loved institution in Kansas City. What many Midwesterners may not know, though, is that the Nelson also has a world-renowned reputation among artists and scholars of Asian art. With more than 7,000 works spanning 5,000 years, the museum boasts one of the most celebrated collections of Asian art in the West.

Chess may not be the first thing that comes to mind when discussing Missouri's fame, but St. Louis, Missouri, was declared by congress the "chess capital of the nation," and the reigning state champion is a Kansas City local.

Tony Rich, the executive director at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis (CCSCSL) attributes the success of St. Louis as an epicenter for chess to the chess community that has developed there in the last 10 years.

Courtesy University of Kansas

 

For the second year in a row, the University of Kansas has been ranked as a top-10 best school in the country for veterans by the Military Times in its Best for Vets: Colleges 2017 rankings.

Mid-Continent Public Library

Mid-Continent Public Library is asking voters in its district in Jackson, Clay and Platte counties to approve a property tax levy to build and upgrade facilities and provide more programs and longer hours.

If approved, Proposition L  would increase property taxes eight-cents per $100. For a household that makes $150,000 per year, this would be a yearly increase of $22.80 per year, and would result in an additional ten million dollars for the library. 

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture

If you are one of the many in Kansas City who has found themselves scratching at large, stubborn bug bites this autumn, you may think that you have encountered a spider or an enormous mosquito. But it’s likely that you have been bitten by the oak mite. 

Dr. Pavika Saripalli​, a physician at the University of Kansas Watkins Health Services, told Central Standard host Gina Kaufmann that the region is experiencing an “oak mite bloom right now.”

ivabalk / Pixabay / Public Domain

While some passengers may find the additional fees for carry-on bags to be an annoying part of traveling, a group of economists led by a University of Kansas professor found that these fees have actually had a positive impact on the flying experience as a whole.

Mazhar Arikan, who teaches at KU's School of Business, published the findings in this study