Up To Date

Weekdays at 11 a.m.

Up to Date focuses on pressing issues, both local and national, including politics, economics, planning and design, history and entertainment - topics that have an impact on the lives of the Greater Kansas City region.


  • Monday: Doug Frost: Thanksgiving Wines and their Immigrant Roots
  • Tuesday: NPR special coverage of Obama-Hollande news conference 
  • Wednesday:  How Islamic is the Islamic State?/ Statehouse Blend / Local Listen 
  • Thursday:  Happy Thanksgiving! Special Programming
  • Friday: Special Programming
Beth Lipoff / KCUR

This week, the British consulate has come down from Chicago to make a pop-up office in Kansas City. If your inner Anglophile is already excited, just wait. They're sponsoring all kinds of cultural events that range from sports to live music. 

Here are four ways you can take advantage of the festivities this weekend:

1. Rock out with the Beatles.

The word "failure" generally has negative connotations but in the startup world, failure is considered a good thing. We talk about how it got its positive spin and how Kansas City could do a better job embracing it. 


He stood alongside Martin Luther King, Jr. in the fight for civil rights, yet the name Bayard Rustin remains largely unknown. We hear the story of this important figure in history. 



The guitarist and bandleader Ron Carlson has quietly become an integral component of Kansas City jazz scene during the last couple years. Musicians from New York and Kansas City combine their talents on Carlson’s new album “Kind Folk.” This week's Local Listen features the mainstream swing of “Beatrice.”

Carlson performs with pianist Roger Wilder and bassist Bob Bowman at the Art Factory in Overland Park at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 23. 

Alyson Raletz / KCUR

Hot peppers, tomato wedges, onions and a pickle spear. That's a Chicago dog.

Mustard, kraut and onion — that's New York.

But what's on a Kansas City hot dog? Is it tangy barbeque sauce or simply a Boulevard beer to wash it down? As of now, there isn't a universal version of a KC-style dog. So we asked three local eateries to invent their signature Kansas City dogs. Here's what they created:

Alex Pope, The Local Pig, 2618 Guinotte Ave., Kansas City, Missouri. 

Lisa Rodriguez / KCUR

It was a familiar scene on Wednesday: Once more, a team in ugly orange uniforms had come to the K for a series-deciding finale, and put up an early lead. But this time, the game, like Johnny Cueto, was nearly perfect. The Royals grounded the Houston Astros to claim their rightful place as hosts of the American League Championship Series, which starts tonight. The specter of last year’s heartbreak lingers, but its exorcism continues. 

Yet most of all, best of all, this is fun again.

Kansas City Artists Interpret "Alice In Wonderland"

Oct 20, 2015

Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland has inspired countless unique interpretations within art, literature, dance, theatre, music and film. We take a look at some local artists' versions as the story turns 150 years old.


Matt Hodapp / KCUR

Missouri House Speaker Pro Tem Denny Hoskins, Republican from District 054provides an insider perspective on the Missouri General Assembly as we discuss education, the Speaker's position, and Missouri's most famous dog, Old Drum.

This is an excerpt from Statehouse Blend. You can listen to the full episode here, or by subscribing on iTunes.


  • Denny Hoskins, Rep. from District 054, Missouri General Assembly 
  • Bess Hayles, Teacher from Lee's Summit
  • Kyle Palmer, Newscaster, KCUR

Experts say financial planning is often key to financial success but one of the biggest challenges is finding the right person to manage your money. A panel of wealth management professionals offer advice on how to find someone who is competent, trustworthy, and interested in helping you achieve your financial goals.


Generation Listen KC is an initiative from  KCUR to engage with young public radio listeners in the KC region. As part of its Forward Promote series, Generation Listen KC invited Up to Date's Steve Kraske to moderate a forum on civic engagement for millennials.

This past Monday, Kansas City bore witness to the best and the worst that can happen to this town. The same night that saw the Royals win their battle in Houston over the Astros … saw two Kansas City, Missouri, firefighters lose their lives as they battled a two-alarm fire on Independence Avenue. Steve Kraske talks with IAFF Local 42 President William Galvin about the traditions and protocol of honoring those who lose their lives in the line of duty.

In the newspapers, Pulitzer-winning columnist Leonard Pitts, Jr., writes about the very real world we live in, commenting on race relations and politics. On this edition of Up to Date, we talk with him about his columns and his latest novel, "Grant Park".

Kevin Briggs saved hundreds of people from jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco while he served as a California Highway Patrol Officer.  Kevin Hines was 19 years old when he jumped off the same bridge. Now both men speak about suicide prevention.

Kevin Briggs will be signing his book,  'Guardian of the Golden Gate: Protecting the Line Between Hope and Despair' at 7 p.m. Friday, October 16 at Barnes & Noble Zona Rosa. 

Discover how a library connects two people across international boundaries, and see what it's like when your parents want to arrange your marriage for you. Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have a variety of choices to spruce up your weekend.

Cynthia Haines

Sicario, R

The Telling Project takes the stories of local veterans and veteran family members and turns them into scripts. Those same vets and family members then rehearse those scripts and present them in their community. Two participating area veterans and the founder of The Telling Project talk with Steve Kraske about the Kansas City version.


Photograph © Nick Vedros 2015

The lives of inmates in prisons across Kansas is a world away from the aesthetics of the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art.

Kansas City photographer Nick Vedros is bringing those worlds together with his Faces of Change photo essay — inspired by a unique self-help program in Kansas prisons. The exhibition is set to open at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art next month.

John Heilemann co-authored the definitive books on presidential campaigns: Game Change on the 2008 election and Double Down, Game Change 2012. He speaks with Steve Kraske about the in-depth research and interview process used in writing those manuscripts, and we get his thoughts on the current race.

John Heilemann is one of the speakers at Village Shalom's Ages of Excellence dinner on Oct. 22, 2015.  

 Howard Iceberg leads an unusual double life. He’s an immigration attorney by day …. and one of Kansas City’s most respected troubadours by night. Local Listen features “You and Your Hazel Eyes,” a song from the singer-songwriter’s new album…. “Smooth Sailing.”

Iceberg and his band the Titanics perform an early show at the RecordBar on Saturday.

The Royals were on their deathbed Monday afternoon, down four runs heading into the 8th inning. It didn’t end that way, thanks to a five-run rally to finish the inning. Now they face the deciding game against the Astros tonight at Kauffman Stadium.


  • KCUR’s Jeremy Bernfeld and Greg Echlin have been covering the Royals during the 2015 playoff run.
Matt Hodapp / KCUR

Republican Kansas Rep. Barbara Bollier from Mission Hills, provides an insider perspective on the Kansas Legislature as we discuss education, and declining revenue numbers.

This is an excerpt from Statehouse Blend. You can listen to the full episode here, or by subscribing on iTunes.


 As the world continues to consume content in different ways, are we seeing the demise of cable TV? Some think that we've reached the end of cable — as we know it. 


  • Michael Pandzik spent 21 years as the founding president and CEO of the National Cable Television Cooperative.

Kansas City leaders face a big decision when it comes to the new downtown convention hotel. A group of petitioners challenging Kansas City’s plan for a the hotel has sufficient signatures to seek a public vote, and new members of city council are questioning the process of the deal. 


  • Dan Coffey is with Citizens for Responsible Government, the organization behind the petition. 
  • Quinton Lucas is the at-large councilman for Kansas City's 3rd District.

In 2007 in Cleveland, Johanna Orozco was raped and shot in the jaw by her ex-boyfriend. Coverage of the shooting inspired new legislation in Ohio targeting teen-on-teen violence and a play based on Johanna's experience. Steve Kraske speaks with the journalist who covered the event and the playwright of "Johanna: Moving Forward."


Jen Mann

Mouthy blogger and New York Times bestselling author Jen Mann is at it again.

In her latest book, Spending the Holidays With People I Want to Punch in the Throat, the Overland Park writer takes down "humblebraggers," elves and bell-ringers alike. 

Whether its her love/hate relationship with chocolate covered peanut butter balls, or her love/hate relationship with her kids being home on winter break, she's got something to say. 

Here is an excerpt from the book, in which Mann lists the things she hates most about the holidays:

Frank Morris / KCUR

When Google Inc. selected Kansas City, Kansas, as the first recipient of its ultra-fast Internet network, the news made headlines around the country.

Yet Kansas City wasn't the first to have gigabit service. In fact, we were years behind. Before Google even announced its contest for the first city to get Google Fiber, Chattanooga, Tennessee, already had deployed its own fiber optic network.

We built it ... but will they come?

In just about every neighborhood, there's a movie theater, a nightclub or maybe a skating rink that has acquired a bad reputation for some reason, and that impression can stick in local memory, whether it's justified or not. We check out a few in Kansas City.


Search for a Spanish serial killer or shiver at the creepy tale of a mother who comes home very different after a surgery. If you're feeling adventurous or you're ready for a few chills before Halloween, Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have just the thing for you.

Cynthia Haines

Marshland, not rated, (Spanish with English subtitles) 

  • Detectives pursue a serial killer in southern Spain.

Phoenix, PG-13

These days, life can be full of distractions and stresses. But finding calm and balance among all of that can be as easy as breathing. Teacher and yoga master Max Strom talked about the importance of breathing on Up To Date, and even practiced with Steve Kraske. 

Watch Steve Kraske find his calm with Max Strom before the show:

A founding member of the Grammy-winning, old-time string band The Carolina Chocolate Drops, Rhiannon Giddens is out with her first solo album, "Tomorrow Is My Turn." She discusses her resistance to being called a "star" and how she's handled her sudden rise in fame. 

Cyprus Avenue Live at The Folly presents Rhiannon Giddens at 7 p.m Sunday, October 11 at the Folly Theater. For more information go to www.follytheater.org.

People struggling  with infertility know just how painful, costly and emotionally draining it can be. We take a look at the issue through the eyes of an author who’s written a new novel on the subject, and we speak with a representative of an organization that provides support for those facing reproductive challenges.