Community

Up to Date
10:54 am
Wed August 13, 2014

Take A Hike: KATY Trail Expansion Update

The Katy Trail stretches from Machens, Mo., to Clinton, Mo.
Credit Gvolk / Wikimedia Commons

When the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad, known as the KATY, canceled its route from Machens to Sedalia, the railroad’s loss became a gain for hikers and cyclists. The 200 miles of converted rail bed, now known as the KATY Trail, is an economic engine that falls short of reaching Kansas City — but that could be changing.

On Wednesday's Up to Date, we find out what’s next for the KATY Trail, and how it might expand. 

Guests:

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Michael Brown Shooting
10:15 am
Wed August 13, 2014

LIVE BLOG: St. Louis Responds To Fatal Shooting In Ferguson

Protesters are greeted by a line of Missouri State Police during a protest march in Ferguson, Missouri on August 11, 2014.
Credit UPI / Bill Greenblatt

This is where you can find the latest updates from the newsroom at St. Louis Public Radio and reliable community sources on the Ferguson community reaction to the police-involved fatal shooting of Michael Brown.

The live blog is hosted by Kelsey Proud, Engagement Editor at St. Louis Public Radio

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Michael Brown Shooting
8:10 am
Wed August 13, 2014

St. Louis Area Police Forces Are Less Diverse Than Communities They Serve, Statistics Show

Protesters are greeted by a wall of police officers after a march to the Ferguson police department on August 11, 2014. People are upset because of the Ferguson Police shooting and death of an unarmed black teenager Michael Brown on August 9, 2014. In all about 20 businesses sustained damage after a candlelight vigil turned violent.

Originally published on Wed October 22, 2014 4:05 pm

The calls for greater representation of minorities in the region's law enforcement ranks have grown louder in the wake of the death of 18-year-old Michael Brown at the hands of a Ferguson police officer. Protesters want to see more minorities especially in the police departments serving predominantly African-American communities.

Two-thirds of Ferguson’s residents are black, according to 2013 census records. But there are only three African Americans on the city’s 53-member police force. The city council is also predominantly white, as is the mayor.

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Community
3:34 pm
Tue August 12, 2014

For Michael Brown, Wheels Of Justice May Turn Slowly

Protestor Allen Smith holds his sign up for passing traffic as he stands outside of the QuikTrip Gas station that was burned down in Ferguson. It may be awhile before investigators determine whether to bring state or federal charges against a Ferguson police officer who shot and killed 18-year-old Michael Brown.

Originally published on Wed January 21, 2015 3:23 pm

St. Louis Board of Alderman President Lewis Reed has an idea about what’s driving the frustration about Michael Brown’s death. 

As federal and local investigations into Brown’s shooting death unfold, Reed said more and more people want details and quick action. They want to know what really happened when a Ferguson police officer shot the 18-year-old last Saturday.

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Up To Date
11:52 am
Tue August 12, 2014

Nelson-Atkins Envisions Creation Of Cultural District

The Nelson-Atkins grand vision of expansion includes a bridge over Brush Creek near what is now Theis Park.
Credit Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art has unveiled plans for a bold expansion. The museum is talking about greater green spaces, walkways, and more sculptures as part of a gleaming cultural district. The new district would extend a mile in every direction from Oak Street and Emanuel Cleaver Boulevard. It’s a huge statement that could carry some pain as pieces of nearby historic neighborhoods would vanish to make way for this new vision.

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Up to Date
11:52 am
Mon August 11, 2014

TEDxKC: From Fission To Fusion

Michel Laberge hopes to make it possible for solar energy to power the grid.

The idea of nuclear power is nothing new, but the traditional method of producing it by fission is being challenged by the safer and greener process of fusion.

On Monday's Up to Date, we talk with the founder of an energy company making a fusion prototype to supply commercially-viable and competitive power generation.

Guest:

  • Dr. Michel Laberge, founder and chief scientist at General Fusion
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Up to Date
11:37 am
Mon August 11, 2014

TEDxKC: Making Hitchhiking A Real Method Of Transport

CarmaHop seeks to increase hitchhiking to make car transportation more efficient.
Credit CarmaHop / Facebook

Next time you drive, look to your right, then in the back. Are your passenger seats empty? You may be alone in your car, but you're not the only one in this situation.

On Monday's Up to Date, we talk with TEDxKC presenter Jenny O'Brien about why she's advocating hitchhiking as a way to fill those seats and make our transportation more efficient.

Guest:

  • Jenny O'Brien, community manager for CarmaHop
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Central Standard
12:55 pm
Fri August 8, 2014

German-Americans In Missouri During World War I

When war broke out in Europe a century ago, more than one in 10 Missourians was German-American. On this episode we talk about the experiences of Missouri’s German-Americans in World War I.

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Up To Date
3:29 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

"The Presidency Of Gerald R. Ford"

Credit University Press of Kansas

Gerald Ford became the 38th president of this country only because his predecessor, Richard Nixon, resigned the office. His presidency lasted only 865 days because he was defeated for election on his own by Jimmy Carter. So the question becomes: Why is Gerald Ford’s presidency worth examining?

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Up To Date
2:30 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

TEDxKC: Getting Money Out Of Politics And A DIY Musician

Lawrence Lessig and Kawehi
Credit Sage Ross / iamkawehi.com / Wikimedia Commons

Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig says we can't begin to deal with problems like climate change, financial reform or anything else until we deal with the corrupting influence of money in American politics. As part of Up to Date's  continuing look at TEDxKC 2014, Lessig explains to Steve Kraske how he believes our system became broken and what it will take to fix it.

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Beyond Our Borders
12:46 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

The Challenges Of Renovating Homes In Kansas City's Urban Core

Neil Rudsill and Lisa Hummel sit on the front porch of their renovated home at the corner of 36th Street and Woodland Avenue in Kansas City, Mo.
Cara McClain KCUR

Blanche Thomas wants neighbors. She has been living in the Ivanhoe neighborhood at 34th Street and Brooklyn Avenue in Kansas City, Mo., since 1956.

Back then, there was a grocery store and dry cleaners across the street. Houses stood on either side of hers. But now, the block looks different.

“It has changed 100 percent because in the block that I live in there are no houses,” Thomas says. “There are no people living on my block, only my son and I.”

The two apartment buildings across the street stand empty. Thomas bought the two lots on either side of her house.

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Up To Date
7:40 am
Thu August 7, 2014

PHOTOS: The Long And Short Of Kansas City Beards

Jake Fowler
Jake Fowler

Beard owners and fans of facial hair have reason to celebrate this weekend: The 2nd Annual City of Fountains Beard & Moustache Competition takes place Saturday, Aug. 9 at the Uptown Theater. Organized by the Kansas City Beard and Moustache Club, the event offers 15 categories of competition, ranging from two-inch "Business Beards" to "Freestyle," the full-on sculpted affairs.

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Up To Date
1:33 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

Facial Hair Enthusiasts Gather For Kansas City Beard & Moustache Competition

Credit KCBMC

The first disposable safety razor was invented in Boston in 1901, and with it came over a century of clean-shaven American men. But recent years have witnessed a revival of stubbled jaws, mustachioed lips, and bearded cheeks - from Ben Affleck and George Clooney to the 2007 writers' strike and the World Series Red Sox. On today's Up To Date, Steve Kraske looks at the newfound respectability of the beard, how it's become a style icon in its own right, and how facial hair stereotypes are being shorn away.

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Up To Date
5:07 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

TEDxKC: Alix Lambert On 'The Bully In The System'

Credit http://www.tedxkc.org

In her new documentary, Mentor, filmmaker Alix Lambert examines the culture of bullying at an Ohio high school and two of its victims who committed suicide.  Bullying will also be the focus of her presentation at this week's TEDxKC speakers series.

In this edition of Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with Lambert about 'bystander culture' and what draws her to individuals who are non-conforming.

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Up To Date
4:32 pm
Tue August 5, 2014

Life As A Senior: Independent Living, Continuing Education And City Planning

Credit Oaktree b / Wikimedia Commons

The last of the Baby Boomers turn 50 this year. By 2030 one out of every five people in the U.S. will be 65-plus. These are people not content to sit in a rocker on the front porch. They want to live independently for as long as possible, experience and learn new things, and have communities that help them stay active and engaged.

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Central Standard
9:33 am
Tue August 5, 2014

Going To Kansas City: Off Broadway, Onto The Midwest

Tracy Terstriep Herber and her two kids Beau, 7, and Maggie,10, pose in front of the Kauffman Center.
Credit Tracy Terstriep Herber

  “Going to Kansas City” is a series that shares the personal stories of how people came to Kansas City — and why they stayed.

Tracy Terstriep Herber had a career on Broadway in New York City as a Radio City “Rockette” and performed in Will Rogers Follies and A Christmas Carol. She was also the understudy to the Tony Award winning lead “Ulla” in the Broadway hit The Producers. 

But once she had her first kid, and realized she wanted a second, she wasn't feeling the right balance of career and family life.

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Crime
7:45 am
Tue August 5, 2014

Former Grandview Mayor Remorseful At Fraud Sentencing

A federal judge has sentenced Stephen Dennis, the former mayor of Grandview, to a year and a day in prison for fraud.

In January, Dennis abruptly resigned from his position as mayor. A month later he pled guilty to wire fraud after embezzling $35,000 from his organization, Matters of the Heart. He has described the organization as a non-profit that helps local low-income people.

The money was a donation from The International House of Prayer in Grandview.

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Up To Date
3:50 pm
Mon August 4, 2014

TEDxKC: Changing The Narrative

Credit http://www.tedxkc.org

TED talks are those 18-minute presentations about big ideas and theories. Since 2009, Kansas City has hosted a TED conference of its own. Steve Kraske sits down with TEDxKC organizer Mike Lundgren for a look at this year's event including a sneak peek at a local singer/songwriter, 15 year-old Gracie Schram.

Guest:

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Up To Date
2:34 pm
Mon August 4, 2014

What Makes A Winner At The Missouri And Kansas State Fairs

Justin Schultis is the current Kansas Auctioneer Champion.
Justin Schultis

The Missouri State Fair starts in Sedalia this Thursday, and the Kansas State Fair is close behind, opening on September 5th. In addition to giant funnel cakes and whirling carnival rides, the State Fairs have a more serious side: competition. On Monday's Up to Date, host Steve Kraske speaks with past and present state fair champions to find out what brings them back year after for that blue ribbon.

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Community
2:07 pm
Mon August 4, 2014

Halls Closes On The Plaza After A Half-Century

Halls' Plaza location closed on Sunday after almost 50 years of business.
Credit Ben Palosaari

 

After nearly 50 years on Kansas City's swanky Country Club Plaza, Halls department store closed its doors over the weekend. The brainchild of Hallmark founder Joyce C. Hall, Halls operated in several Kansas City locations since opening in 1916.

A year ago, the greeting card maker announced they would close their iconic storefront. 

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Food Critics
1:15 pm
Fri August 1, 2014

Food Critics: The Best Tacos In Kansas City

The Food Critics track down the best tacos in the Kansas City metro on Friday's show.
Credit Evan P. Cordes / Flickr-CC

From Southwest Boulevard to 7th Street Trafficway, it's hard to go anywhere in the Kansas City metro without running into delicious taquerias and Mexican restaurants.

On Friday's Central Standard, host Charles Ferruzza and the rest of the Food Critics came up with a large list of some of the best tacos in Kansas City.

Here are the Critics' and callers' picks:

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Beyond Our Borders
11:11 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Troost Project Is A Walk Down Memory Lane

Ron Jones and his dad, George Jones.
Credit Courtesy / Ron Jones

KCUR’s Beyond Our Borders project has kicked off a year-long examination of the geographic lines that separate our region. 

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Beyond Our Borders
7:43 am
Fri August 1, 2014

What Sidewalks In Troostwood Say About The Green Impact Zone

Troostwood Neighborhood Association president Wanda Taylor, pictured here with her dog Faith, says overall, the Green Impact Zone has had a positive impact on where she lives.
Credit Elle Moxley / KCUR

The sidewalk outside of Wanda Taylor's house on Tracy Avenue in Kansas City, Mo., is cracking – it's bad enough that her dog, Faith, steps gingerly around it during an evening walk.

All of the sidewalks in Troostwood, where Taylor is neighborhood association president, used to look like this. But two years ago, the sidewalks north of 51st Street were replaced as part of the Green Impact Zone project. The fresh, new concrete is stamped "GIZ 2012."

“Now see how nice sidewalks – the difference that they make?” asks Taylor.

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Tell KCUR
4:03 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Worst Things About The State Line, According To Kansas Citians

How does the state line affect your life? Tweet us at #TellKCUR.
Credit Cara McClain / KCUR

Having to file taxes in two states is the biggest drawback to the state line.

At least according to one Kansas Citian, Marge Gasnick (@gasnickmarge), who responded to our question of the week on Twitter: How does the state line affect your life?

As KCUR reporters begin to examine the state line for the next few months, part of our Beyond Our Borders project,  we wanted to hit up our audience for story ideas.

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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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Community
4:09 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

10 Urban Fishing Spots In The Kansas City Area

Larry McKenzie shows off two fish he caught at the Little Blue River earlier in the day. He's trying his luck at Troost Lake at 27th Street and the Paseo.
Credit Suzanne Hogan / KCUR

Even though Kansas City is a landlocked city, there are a lot of great fishing spots, including the Missouri River and a large amount of area lakes, ponds and small rivers. The Missouri Department of Conservation and Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism, even stock Kansas City area park lakes with fish throughout the year to promote close-to-home fishing. 

Here’s some information to help aspiring urban anglers get started.

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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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Tell KCUR
4:12 pm
Mon July 28, 2014

Tell KCUR: How Does The State Line Affect Your Life?

How does the state line affect your life? Tweet us your answer with the #TellKCUR hashtag.
Credit KCUR

As KCUR prepares to spend a months-long examination on issues tied to the state line in the Kansas City metropolitan area, we’re curious about the significance of this north-south border in your world.

Maybe you lost or gained a job when a company headquarters moved across the metro to another state.

Perhaps the state line makes filing taxes more difficult or easier for you. Or crossing the Kansas-Missouri border gets you cheaper gas or sales taxes.

Tell KCUR: How does the state line affect your life?

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Nature
3:17 pm
Fri July 25, 2014

How Kansas City's Trees Are Saving You Money And Cutting Pollution

A new study on Kansas City's trees shows that they help save energy costs for residents and cut down pollution and carbon emissions.
Credit Cody Newill / KCUR

The tree and shrub population in the Kansas City metropolitan area saves residents nearly $14 million a year, according to a new study.

The United States Department of Agriculture's Northern Research Station (NRS) examined plant life in nine counties in the Kansas City metro area.

The NRS found that by blocking winds in the winter, shading buildings in the summer, and providing natural evaporative cooling all throughout the year, trees and shrubs significantly cut down residential energy costs.

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