7:40 am
Wed January 8, 2014

Folk Alliance Relocation Will Bring Kansas City Music, Money

Folk Alliance director Louis Meyers says the Folk Alliance brings people together through music.
Credit Lauren Kirby

Kansas City, Mo., will take on a folksy note next month when Folk Alliance International holds its annual conference at Crown Center.

A celebration of all types of folk culture, the event is perhaps a harbinger of bigger things to come. The nonprofit Folk Alliance moved its headquarters from Memphis to Kansas City last summer — and already, the folk connections are building. 

The group set up its headquarters in Kansas City's River Market and opened a boutique music shop called The Folk Shop on location.

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4:13 pm
Tue January 7, 2014

KU Med Names New Executive Dean

Dr. Robert Simari joins KU Med as executive dean.
Credit KU Medical Center

The University of Kansas School of Medicine announced Tuesday afternoon that Dr. Robert Samari will become the school's new executive dean.

Samari comes from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., where he currently serves as vice chair of the Division of Cardiovascular Diseases and co-director of the Mayo Center for Clinical and Translational Sciences.

Simari grew up in Overland Park and graduated from Shawnee Mission West High School. He received his medical degree from KU in 1986.

Simari is also co-founder of Anexon, a biotech company based in Cambridge, Mass.

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Up to Date
11:18 am
Tue January 7, 2014

Western Kansas Drought Effects Reach Across State

The droughts of western Kansas could affect the water supply in Kansas City.
Credit Kansas Poetry / Flickr-CC

You've heard about how farmers in western Kansas have faced drought problems, but you might not know that the drought can affect the water supply here in Kansas City.

In the second part of Tuesday's Up to Date, we take a look at the drought's far-reaching effects and what actions could fix the problem.


  • Josh Swatty, vice president of the Land Institute
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Up to Date
11:05 am
Tue January 7, 2014

Exploring Ham Radio In A Digital World

Ham radio operators can communicate with basic equipment like this.
Credit Whiskeygonebad / Flickr-CC

With smartphones and Wi-Fi everywhere, ham radios can seem a little dated. However, the machines have quite a following, and they can be lifesavers when disasters strike.

On Tuesday's Up to Date, we talk with a ham radio enthusiast about their continued popularity and check in to see how useful they can be for area hospitals.

Learn More: interested in becoming a ham radio operator? Learn more about classes


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Harvest Public Media
8:30 am
Tue January 7, 2014

Herbicide-Resistant Crops One Step Closer To US Fields

New herbicide-resistant corn and soybeans are a step closer to reaching farm fields in the U.S.
Credit Amy Mayer / Harvest Public Media

New herbicide-resistant corn and soybeans are a step closer to reaching farm fields in the U.S. They would help farmers control weeds that are no longer killed by the popular herbicide, Roundup.

Dow Agrosciences has engineered new crops that can withstand the herbicide 2,4-D, giving farmers a new tool against weeds resistant to Roundup.

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8:17 am
Tue January 7, 2014

Number Of Deaths On Kansas Roads Reaches Record Low

The number of Fatalities on Kansas roads has reached an all-time low. The Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) says there were 344 fatalities on the state's roads last year.

The number of deaths on Kansas roads has fallen significantly in the last decade or so. There were more than 500 deaths in 2002.

"I really think that there's a lot of factors that are contributing," says Steven Buckley, safety engineer with KDOT.

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8:13 am
Tue January 7, 2014

Norovirus Confirmed In Kansas Vomiting, Diarrhea Outbreak

A pre-Christmas outbreak of vomiting and diarrhea that sickened almost 300 people in southwest Kansas was caused by norovirus, according to state health officials.

The outbreak has been linked to a Jimmy John's sandwich restaurant in Garden City.

As of Jan. 3, 282 people who ate at the restaurant between Dec. 10 and Dec. 24 reported becoming ill—most of them within 72 hours of eating at Jimmy John’s.

The restaurant voluntarily closed from Dec. 24 through Dec. 26 for a thorough cleaning and disinfection.

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4:29 pm
Mon January 6, 2014

Majority Of Kansas City Water Pipes Withstand Sub-Zero Temps

Despite some of coldest weather in years, the Kansas City Water Services Department has not been inundated with service calls for frozen pipes or lines. Though, troubleshooters await a second full night of sub-zero temperatures.

Almost 100 calls have come from customers who say their water taps deliver nothing, but Jennifer Kincaid of the city’s Water Services wants people to stay aware the danger to pipes remains through Monday night.  

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4:01 pm
Mon January 6, 2014

Remembering R. Crosby Kemper Jr., Icon Of Kansas City

The Kemper family supported farming and agriculture, most notably through the support of the American Royal.
Credit Courtesy / The Kemper family

R. Crosby Kemper Jr., banker, philanthropist, and giant of Kansas City civic life, died last week at his friend's home in Indian Wells, Calif. He was 86.

Kemper was born in 1927 in Kansas City, the only son of R. Crosby Kemper Sr. and Enid Jackson Kemper.

Throughout his active life, many of his preoccupations reflected his family's legacy  — a long line of Kansas City aristocrats and leaders involved in banking, agriculture and politics. 

A banker's life

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Up to Date
12:56 pm
Mon January 6, 2014

Missouri And Kansas Lawmakers Tackle New Sessions

Kansas lawmakers return to Topeka Jan 13 for the new legislative session.
Credit stgermh / Flickr-CC

When lawmakers go back to work in Kansas and Missouri, they’ll have some hot issues to keep them warm.

On Monday's Up to Date, state lawmakers from both Kansas and Missouri join us to talk about those contentious topics. In Kansas, the buzz centers around school funding and how the state’s Supreme Court could change the budget for education.

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Central Standard
11:26 am
Mon January 6, 2014

Movie Critics: The Best (And Worst) Movies Of 2013

Gravity made many of our movie critics' top film lists this year.
Credit Warner Bros. Pictures / IMP Awards

This was another record-breaking year at the box office for the film industry and on Friday's Central Standard, the movie critics gather 'round to share what they felt were the best (and worst) movies of 2013.

The Top Five Films of the Year:  

John Tibbetts:

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Missouri Statehouse
7:02 am
Mon January 6, 2014

Missouri Lawmakers Head Back To Statehouse This Week

Missouri lawmakers return to Jefferson City this week for the start of the 2014 legislative session.

This year's session will likely look a lot like last year’s session; there will be lots of so-called unfinished business on the minds of Republican leaders as they begin the regular session on Wednesday.

House Speaker Tim Jones says they’ll again pursue a major tax cut.

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Harvest Public Media
6:46 am
Mon January 6, 2014

The New Wheat Behind Whole Grain White Bread

Food companies want to capitalize on the growing market of white bread fans who want to eat whole wheat. A new variety of wheat makes that easier.
Credit Luke Runyon / Harvest Public Media

A new wheat variety may have cracked the code to marry the fluffiness of white bread with whole grain nutrition.

For a long time, American bread makers have been in a bind. Many consumers like the texture and taste of white bread, but want the nutritional benefits of whole grains.

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6:31 am
Mon January 6, 2014

As Frigid Weather Rolls In, Service Agencies Reach Out

In answer to the bitter cold, a Kansas City Salvation Army team that deals with the camp-living homeless will be out for the next three nights. The numbers served are small, but the services are life-saving.

On a Summer night, relief volunteers see about a hundred people in the makeshift camps. Numbers dwindle to 30 or 60 a night when the harshest winter hits.

Sean Tyson runs emergency and disaster aid for the Salvation Army, which brings clothing and warm food to people in woods along the Missouri River and its bridges and West Bottoms.

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Harvest Public Media
6:20 am
Mon January 6, 2014

Sub-Zero Temperatures Have Farmers Worried About Wheat Crop

A dusting of snow covers a winter wheat crop.
Credit couleewinds / Flickr--CC

In parts of Kansas, forecasts of biting cold temperatures with lows five or ten degrees below zero has farmers worried about the wheat crop that’s in the ground.

Hard red winter wheat is the most common wheat variety grown in the United States. It’s often used to make bread. Planted in the fall, it lays dormant underground in the winter months. It’s hardy. But bitter cold temperatures for a few consecutive days can lower the temperature of the soil to dangerous levels.

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6:08 am
Mon January 6, 2014

Jayhawks Lose To San Diego, Breaking Home Nonconference Streak

In college basketball, the Kansas Jayhawks lost 61-57 against San Deigo State, after 68 straight home wins against non-conference opponents.

San Diego State, ranked 21st in the AP poll, knocked off the 16th ranked Jayhawks, at home Sunday afternoon.

The last non-conference team to beat the Kansas Jayhawks at Allen Fieldhouse was Oral Roberts in November of 2006, the early stage of a season during which KU ended up only one victory shy of reaching the Final Four.

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3:02 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Kansas To Receive $10.8 Million Bonus In Medicaid Funding

Kansas will receive a bonus of $10.8 million in federal Medicaid funding for improving access to and increasing enrollment in the Children's Health Insurance Program, which is part of the Medicaid program.

Kansas has received similar bonuses from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for each of the last five years. Bonus amounts correspond to increases in enrollment of children in Medicaid.

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Up to Date
12:54 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Up To Date's Indie, Foreign & Doc Critics' 'Three To See,' Jan. 3-5

'The Great Beauty' is on Steve Walker's list this weekend.

Looking for a great film to see the weekend of Jan. 3-5? Up to Date's indie, documentary and foreign film critics share their three favorites showing on area screens.

Cynthia Haines:

  • 12 Years a Slave
  • Philomena
  • American Hustle

Steve Walker:

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9:29 am
Fri January 3, 2014

R. Crosby Kemper Jr. Dies At 86

Kemper Jr. displayed a lifelong passion for the arts.
Credit Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art

Kansas City banker and philanthropist, R. Crosby Kemper Jr. has died at the age of 86.

Kemper was best known for leading Kansas City-based UMB Financial Corp. He died Thursday in Indian Wells, Calif.

His son R. Crosby Kemper III says he was there enjoying the great weather over the holidays.

Kemper Jr. was born in Kansas City on Feb. 22, 1927 to R. Crosby Kemper Sr. and Enid Jackson Kemper. He worked in banking for more than 50 years, starting at his father's City National Bank as a night transit clerk and eventually becoming president in 1959.

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7:56 am
Fri January 3, 2014

In This Type Of Playoff Game, History Doesn't Favor The Chiefs

The last three times the Chiefs have met the Colts in the playoffs, things haven't turned out so good.
Credit KC Chiefs

History doesn’t favor the Kansas City Chiefs in the NFL playoffs when they’re matched against the Indianapolis Colts. But the Chiefs hope to turn that around Saturday afternoon when they kick off in Indianapolis, Ind.

The first playoff game between the Chiefs and the Colts on a frigid afternoon at Arrowhead Stadium in 1995 ended with a missed field goal under coach Marty Schottenheimer. Chiefs placekicker, Lin Elliott, missed three field goal attempts that day.

In January, 2004, at Arrowhead again but under Coach Dick Vermeil, the Colts outslugged the Chiefs, 38-31.

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Cops & Crime
7:47 am
Fri January 3, 2014

Metro Drivers In Kansas Claim Legal Exceptions To Texting Law

Police and highway patrol on the Kansas side of metro Kansas City are finding it hard to enforce laws against texting while driving. Loopholes allow it to go on, relatively unchecked as numbers bear out.

Kansas law is pretty clear, stating you can’t drive on road or highway “while using a wireless communications device to write, send or read a written communication.”

Yet, the Johnson County Sheriff's office only issued 17 tickets  for testing while driving in 2012. Overland Park Police wrote 45 tickets for the offense in 2011 and 40 in 2012.  

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7:34 am
Fri January 3, 2014

Inmates' Lawyers Ask Mo. Board Of Pharmacy To Act Before Execution

A container of pentobarbital. Missouri's execution drug isn't like this one though, which is made by a manufacturer. The state is instead relying on a compounding pharmacy to emulate the drug.
via Flickr/Nottingham Vet School

Originally published on Thu January 2, 2014 3:36 pm

Lawyers representing death row inmates have filed a complaint with the Missouri Board of Pharmacy, citing St. Louis Public Radio and the Beacon’s investigation from earlier this week.

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6:00 am
Fri January 3, 2014

Film Review: Even In Spiritual Decline, Rome Remains 'The Great Beauty'

Toni Servillo plays a writer pondering what he has accomplished and what he may still achieve in 'The Great Beauty.'
Credit Courtesy of Janus Films

Throughout Paolo Sorrentino’s exuberant and strange film The Great Beauty,  a 65-year-old writer whose only hit novel was published 40 years prior struggles with his own reputation and mortality, as well as that of his beloved Rome, Italy. According to Jep Gambardella (Toni Servillo) and his jaded circle of friends, Rome is over and done – finito. As one of his friends says, the only decent people left in Rome are the tourists.

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Visual Arts
5:00 am
Fri January 3, 2014

Inside The Collection Of The Kansas City Museum

A tiara, from the GLAMA (Gay and Lesbian Archive of Mid-America) collective initiative, worn in a drag beauty queen pageant.
Laura Spencer KCUR

In December, a city ordinance shifted management of the Kansas City Museum from Union Station Kansas City, Inc. to the  parks department, as of May 1, 2014. Corinthian Hall, the home of the museum, is under renovation – so much of the vast collection remains in storage at Union Station.

So what's in the museum's collection of more than 70,000 objects?

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Up to Date
11:33 am
Thu January 2, 2014

The Weekend To-Do List: January 3-5, 2014

The Johnson County Museum is offering 'A Very Fifties Christmas' in its All-Electric House.
Credit nonasuch / Flickr-CC

Looking for something to ward off the chill this weekend? Check out Brian McTavish's Weekend To-Do List for Jan. 3-5, 2014.

American Aquarium (Americana: country, folk, rock), 8:30 p.m. Thursday at Knuckleheads Saloon, 2715 Rochester, Kansas City, Mo. Tickets: $12 

Kid Sister (Rap), 8 p.m. Saturday at the Riot Room, 4048 Broadway, Kansas City, Mo. Tickets: $5.00 - $10.00 

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10:20 am
Thu January 2, 2014

Remembering Kansas Mariachi Pioneer, Teresa Cuevas

Teresa Cuevas plays her violin in a 2008 photo.
Credit Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

Mariachi musician and founder of a groundbreaking all-female mariachi band, Teresa Cuevas, died late last year at the age of 93.

Cuevas founded Mariachi Estrella with seven other women from her church choir in 1980. They became a regional phenomenon, trading the mariachis' traditional black pants for long maroon shirts. The band played shows all over Kansas.

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KC Currents
10:02 am
Thu January 2, 2014

A Look At The 'Food Hub' Trend In Kansas City

Food hubs in Kansas City help small farmers distribute their products to restaurants, grocery stores and larger institutions.
Credit USDA.gov / CC

The popularity of locally-grown and raised food in Kansas City continues to grow. But local food producers often have a hard time selling to restaurants, grocery stories and institutions like schools and hospitals. Local farmers often don’t have the volume or variety to compete with larger farms and food distributors. Even for those institutions willing to pay more for locally-sourced food, the infrastructure is lacking.

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Harvest Public Media
9:29 am
Thu January 2, 2014

Food Hubs Try To Grow Local Farms

Marty Travis, right, started the Stewards of the Land food hub in 2005. His son Will, left, helps him transport food from local farms to area restaurants.
Credit Sean Powers / Harvest Public Media

Restaurants across the country have jumped on the local food bandwagon. They’re trying to source more of their produce from nearby farms, but it's not easy. Enter: Food hubs.

Food hubs are popping up across the country. These food processing and distribution centers make it easier for restaurants, grocery stores and others to buy local food. The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that there are more than 220 of them in 40 states plus the District of Columbia.

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Lethal Injection
9:09 am
Thu January 2, 2014

Investigation: Missouri's Execution Drug Source Raises Legal, Ethical Questions

Originally published on Thu January 2, 2014 1:11 pm

In an investigation spanning the past few months, St. Louis Public Radio and the Beacon has discovered the state of Missouri may be ignoring its own laws in carrying out the death penalty by buying execution drugs from a pharmacy not licensed to do business in Missouri.

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8:15 am
Thu January 2, 2014

New Statehouse Visitor Center Exhibits Kansas History

Some of the historical items being prepared for the visitor center.
Credit Stephen Koranda / Kansas Public Radio

At a ceremony Thursday morning, Kansas officials will unveil a new visitor center in the basement of the Kansas Statehouse.

The facility contains pictures, documents and items focused around Kansas history and government.

Mary Madden is with the Kansas Historical Society. She says they have a sword once owned by John Brown and ballots from a vote on a proposed state constitution.

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