Winter

Kcphotoblog / Wikimedia Commons Creative Commons

Salt gets all the credit for de-icing our roads during wintry weather, but it turns out it’s not a solo operation. The Kansas City office of the Missouri Department of Transportation says beet juice also plays an important part in melting that troublesome ice.

We’ll get to what the beet juice actually does — but first let’s find out where it comes from.

Courtesy of the artist and Gallery AMA, Helsinki © Sirpa Särkijärvi, Courtesy Gallery AMA, Helsinki

In honor of the winter solstice, a conversation about an exhibit of contemporary Finnish paintings called Dark Days, Bright Nights. What we can learn about human nature from a place where all the inhabitants live in extremes of light.

Guest:

Frank Morris / KCUR

Kansas City's Public Works Department plans to tap into city employees to nearly double its residential snow plowing routes this winter.

Public Works officials encourage all public employees to sign up for 8 - 12 hour shifts driving pickup truck plows this winter. They'll focus exclusively on helping clear off residential roads and helping residents who might be stuck on roads.

Daniel Wildi / Flickr -- Creative Commons

Emergency room doctors at the University of Kansas Hospital say there are a few practical ways NOT to be one of the weather-related patients they’ve been seeing during this cold snap.

But doctors advise those who go outside to remember:

Trailnet / Flickr-CC

Brrr! Can you dig it?

Either way, there’s wintry stuff to do this weekend, whether laughing in the face of freezing is your thing or doing whatever you possibly can to escape the chill is more your style.

One thing’s for sure: It’s nippy. And it’s important to keep moving. Here’s a mitten-full of ideas to embrace or deny the cold reality.

1. Winter Storm – The Pipes and Drums Concert

black sleigh
Ben Nuelle

Long before all-wheel drive and snow tires, sleighs were essential winter transportation.

Those that survive are now antiques.

Fifteen years ago, cattle farmer Bill Engel went to auction in northeast Iowa when he bought his first wooden sleigh. He noticed people purchased these historic vehicles to tear them apart.

“They were taking the runner parts and making them into coffee tables,” says Engel.

KCUR

Dear Kansas City, we want to know what your Olympic dreams are.

As the world’s finest athletes compete at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia,  we’re wondering which gold you’ve been eyeing — from your living room.

Tell KCUR: If you could be in the Olympics, what would be your sport? Why?

Are you a would-be figure skater? A snowboarding hopeful?

katiebread / Flickr

When it hits 67 degrees in January, one must wonder what effect such odd winter weather is having on our plants, trees, and flowers.