Gina Kaufmann

Host, Central Standard

Gina’s background combines print and broadcast journalism, live event hosting and production, creative nonfiction writing and involvement in the arts. Early in her career, she followed a cultural beat for The Pitch, where she served as an editor and art writer in the early 2000s. She also worked as a contributing editor of Heeb magazine out of New York, assisting with the Heeb Storytelling series and ultimately starting her own live storytelling event series in Kansas City. Gina got her public radio chops working first as an intern for KC Currents with Sylvia Maria Gross, then as a co-host of The Walt Bodine Show. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Columbia University and her Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia.

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Central Standard
10:16 am
Wed September 17, 2014

New Trends In Taxidermy

The new shop Oracle opened a little over year ago in the Crossroads.
Sylvia Maria Gross KCUR

In recent years, taxidermy has bust out of hunter's dens and natural history museums to become a new trend in home decor, as well as a way to remember pets.

Guests:

  • Anthony Eddy, owner, Eddy's Wildlife Studio
  • Maxwell Ryan, founder and CEO, Apartment Therapy
  • Cindy Cunningham, taxidermist, Second Creation Taxidermy
  • Jane Almirall, artist and shop owner, Oracle
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Central Standard
12:40 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

We Walk The Line: What It Means To Live In A City On A State Line

This 1866 map shows the division between Kansas and Missouri at a time when western Kansas was still largely unknown to the map-makers.
Credit Johnson, A. J., Johnson's New Illustrated Family Atlas, (1864 Johnson and Ward edition) / public domain

Bistate tax proposals. Sports rivalries. Competing school districts and business poaching. So much of what happens in Kansas City comes down to our location on a state line. But we're not alone. Tune in for a roundtable of reporters from cities on state lines. 

Guests:

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Central Standard
12:48 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

Kansas City Artists Are Defining 'The State Of The Art'

Miki Baird, Kansas City, Mo. 'swatch...the weft and warp of red walker' (2010 - 2012)
Credit E.G. Schempf, courtesy of the artist and Haw Contemporary, Kansas City, Mo.

Curators from Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Ark., set out on a road trip to find the most compelling unknown artists hidden away in studios across the country. About a thousand studio visits later, artists had been selected for The State of the Art exhibitTwo Kansas City artists made the cut. 

Guests:

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Central Standard
2:26 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Pass The Pawpaw: Foraging For Missouri's Banana

The pawpaw fruit continues to ripen, just off the hiking trails at Burr Oak Woods located in Blue Springs, Mo.
Credit KCUR's Gina Kaufmann

You know how sometimes you stumble across a word you've never heard before in your entire life, and then suddenly, the word is everywhere? That happened to me with the pawpaw.

I was born and raised in Missouri, so discovering in my thirties that a random fruit with a made-up-sounding name is considered my state's own banana? That came as a shock (though, to be fair, it's also known as the Indiana banana and the West Virginia banana). 

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Central Standard
3:10 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Mental Health In Immigrant Communities

Community specialist Rinzin Wangpo (second from the left in the back) pays a visit to the Khadka family, originally of Bhutan, living in the Argentine neighborhood of Kansas City, Kan.
Credit Alex Smith / KCUR

Understanding where people come from and how they think is crucial in mental health treatments. Cultural belief systems affect how we view just about everything, including the mind and its troubles. Kansas City area health workers discuss how that understanding shapes their work with immigrant communities.

Guests:

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Central Standard
4:00 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Now That The Doors Have Opened, What Will IKEA Mean For Kansas City?

The pre-opening hype would be hard to deny. Just ask the people who spent two nights camping out to be among the first to enter the new Merriam IKEA on opening day. So what is the IKEA story, and how do we expect the global furniture retailer to affect the local economy?

Guests:

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Central Standard
3:55 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

The Man Behind "The Worst" Shopping Mall Commercial Speaks

When Chris Fleck began working on a commercial for the East Hills mall, he knew he wanted to go "different." He succeeded. The commercial has gone viral, generating more than two million hits on YouTube. The bait getting people to watch it? Suggestions that it may well be the worst shopping mall commercial of all time.

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Central Standard
2:15 pm
Mon September 8, 2014

What's At Stake The Senior Year Of High School?

Credit Visha Angelova / CC Flickr

High school seniors have a lot on their minds: graduation, applying to colleges, a whole year of "lasts." Meet two members of the class of 2015; we'll check in with them throughout the year, exploring the tricky issues that come up in that final stretch to the finish line.

Guests:

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Central Standard
4:44 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

Yolanda Commack Is All About Fitness, And Doesn't Sleep Much

Yolanda Commack at rest in her fitness studio, Lonnie Bush Fitness.
Credit Paul Andrews / Courtesy photo

Just before her 40th birthday, Yolanda Commack found a lump in her breast. The day of the procedure to have it removed, she was explicitly told not to lift anything. She wasn't fazed. In fact, she went right back to work building trucks at a Ford plant.

When she went in for the results, her doctor asked her whether she wanted the good news or the bad news first. She asked for the good news. 

He said, "The good news is, your stitches are ready to come out."

That's how she found out she had breast cancer. Triple-negative breast cancer, to be specific.

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Central Standard
2:25 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

Meet The Kansas City Photographer Taking A Portrait A Day This Year

Photographer Paul Andrews is capturing Kansas City, one portrait at a time.
Credit Paul Andrews

Kansas City photographer Paul Andrews has committed himself to taking a photograph a day for all of 2014. He's been posting the photos online as he goes, and his project has gained a local following by way of social media.

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Central Standard
1:45 pm
Thu September 4, 2014

The Mysterious Link Between Music And Memory

When you recite the ABC's, do you still sing the song? It's very likely you do, and reason lies in the connection between music, memory and learning. 

Guests:

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Central Standard
5:13 pm
Wed September 3, 2014

Cuddles For Sale In Kansas City

Even trinkets sometimes need a cuddle.
Credit Hien Nguyen CC Flickr

   

At "cuddle houses," you can pay a stranger to cuddle with you--it's supposed to be a form of touch therapy. Professional cuddling has set up shop in Wisconsin, New York and has now come to Kansas City. How does touch affect our physical and psychological well-being?

Guests:

  • Anne Graham, ​former professional cuddler
  • Jason O’Brien, director, Cuddle: A Documentary
  • Carolyn Guenther Molloy,  infant touch therapist, Stress Free Start LLC
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Central Standard
2:02 pm
Tue September 2, 2014

Changing Trends In Teaching About Difference

These students act out and witness scenes in KU's Tunnel of Oppression, a program that asks college students to confront uncomfortable social dynamics.
Credit KU / Creative Commons

For the past few decades, American communities have been trying to foster this thing called "multiculturalism." As we continue to debate notions of privilege and perception, how is this experiment going? Are we more empathetic than we used to be? Plus, having "the talk"... about race.

Guests:

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Central Standard
2:49 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Quality Check: What's In The Air Kansas City Breathes?

Leticia DeCaigny measures air quality in Kansas City, Kan., and says the rail yards in the neighborhood contribute to air quality issues.
Credit Sneebly / Flickr, Creative Commons

A recent community meeting gathered in response to high levels of sulfur dioxide pollution in neighborhoods near downtown Kansas City. What's in our air, where is it coming from, and what exactly do our lungs do with the contaminants we breathe, anyway?

Guests:

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Central Standard
2:00 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Won't You Be My (Online) Neighbor?

A new social media platform that helps people connect with their neighbors has entered into partnerships with Kansas City, Mo., and Kansas City, Kan. Which got us wondering: What happened to a friendly wave across the driveway?

Guests:

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Central Standard
11:04 am
Fri August 22, 2014

Motorcycle Culture: Separating Myth From Reality

The sound of a motorcycle revving its engine signaled trouble back when the Shangri-Las sang "Leader of the Pack," but the biker image has grown more nuanced since then. This conversation explores the evolving reality of motorcycle culture in Kansas City. 

Guests:

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Central Standard
5:24 pm
Tue August 19, 2014

Ferguson In Perspective: Race Riots In Midwestern Cities

Police surround an incapacitated man after throwing tear gas into the crowd of protesters, 1968, Kansas City, Mo.
Credit Western Historical Manuscript Collection

  Festering tensions reach a boiling point, erupting into a stand-off between police and the African-American community. This basic scenario has played out in Kansas City, Mo., Lawrence, Kan., St. Louis, Ill. and now Ferguson, Mo.

Guests:

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Central Standard
3:10 pm
Tue August 19, 2014

Living To Tell The Tale: Missouri River Racers Make It Home

After paddling solo 340 miles down the Missouri River, stopping only briefly to catch the teensiest bit of shut-eye, two competitors in the MR340 share their experiences, from paddling through fog to hallucinating on the water.

Guests:

  • Doug Jennings, organizer and longtime participant
  • Amy Sevcik, first-time competitor
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Central Standard
3:06 pm
Tue August 19, 2014

Beyond The Check Book: An Update On Financial Literacy

With more than 60 percent of Americans admitting to not keeping a basic budget, the Cash Money Crew explores the state of financial literacy, offering tips for teaching young people about money management. 

Guests:

  • Sandi Weaver, financial planner, Financial Security Advisors
  • David Jackson, financial planner, Financial Planning Association of Greater Kansas City
  • Lucas Bucl, financial planner, KHC Wealth Management
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Central Standard
2:50 pm
Thu August 14, 2014

Behind The Sticker Price: Tomatoes

Gerry Newman of Providence Farms shows off his tomatoes at the Overland Park Farmer's Market.
Credit Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

Fresh tomatoes are a pleasure of summer, but they typically come at a price. Discover what goes into setting that price, whether it's worth it, and what you can do with them when you get home.

Guests:

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Community
4:29 pm
Wed August 13, 2014

Responding To A Police Shooting

The community response to the death of unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown, in Ferguson, Mo. has varied from rioting and looting to peaceful protests and calls for civil discourse. Is there a way of responding to police shootings that can effect personal, social, or political change?

Guests:

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Central Standard
1:02 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

Music Animates Memory In Alzheimer's And Dementia Patients

Alzheimer's and dementia can make loved ones appear unreachable, like shells of their former selves. A new documentary and increasingly popular treatment program use music to connect with the dynamic inner lives of patients. 

Guests:

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Central Standard
9:57 pm
Mon August 11, 2014

Identifying And Teaching 'English Language Learners'

In many school districts, immigrant students with low English comprehension aren't always immediately identified as needing ESL (English as a Second Language) courses when they enroll. A new proposal in Kansas City, Missouri would help identify these students earlier so they have access to the assistance they need. We look at this program as well as the latest trends in ESL education. 

Guests:

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Central Standard
9:29 am
Wed August 6, 2014

Kansas City's Vi Tran Is 'The Butcher's Son'

Actor and musician Vi Tran has a new play based on his childhood experiences as a refugee in Garden City.
Credit Courtesy of Vi Tran

When Vi Tran was a young boy growing up in Garden City, Kan., his mother made the most of what the refugee family had. She would take rice and roll it into a ball, adding a little bit of soy sauce. 

“Honey, look,” she’d say. “It’s an egg, it’s a treat.”

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Central Standard
4:59 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

Stress: From Causes To Coping Mechanisms

More than a quarter of Americans self-identify as being under a great deal of stress. What's troubling us, and why do some people respond to stressful situations with greater resilience than others?

Guest:

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Central Standard
3:43 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

When We Talk About Troost, Are We Talking About Race?

Troost Avenue: Is it just a street like any other, or does it carry symbolic weight?
Credit Paul Sableman / Flickr, Creative Commons

To conclude KCUR's extended investigation of Troost Avenue as a border that Kansas Citians perceive as a dividing line, Central Standard asked a question that often goes unspoken. That is, when we talk about Troost, as a city, are we really talking about race?

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Central Standard
2:08 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Troost As A Meme

When we talk about Troost in Kansas City, are we really talking about race? A panel of people who live, work and think on the street discuss whether our Troost meme is useful, or causes further divisions.

Guests:

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Central Standard
4:04 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

Behind The Numbers: The Significance Of College Rankings

The Kansas City Star recently published a report indicating that UMKC's highly-touted Bloch School of Management's rankings might be misleading. Money's Kim Clark and Kaplan's Arthur Ahn discuss how publications rank universities, and what those rankings mean to prospective students and employers.

Guests:

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Central Standard
3:29 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

Fishing In Kansas City, On Both Sides Of The State Line

Missouri and Kansas anglers stand a decent chance of catching catfish on local waterways.
Credit Missouri Department of Conservation

Crappies, blue gills, blue bass and catfish. If that menu sounds tasty to you, then you are in luck, because that's what you stand to catch if you go fishing in and around Kansas City.

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Central Standard
5:00 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

Author Puts Unconventional Spin On Economics

John Hope Bryant's recent book has a different take on the relationship between capitalism and the poor.

Who has the power in capitalism? The critics of capitalism say the rich have the upper hand. But author John Hope Bryant thinks the story is more complex than that. He thinks that capitalism works best when it benefits not the few, but the many.

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