youth

Cody Newill / KCUR

Almost 400 youth soccer teams from across the Midwest came to Overland Park, Kansas for the 2015 KC Champions Cup tournament, and that means lots of money went into hotels, restaurants and shops in the area.

Brian Darby owns Coach's Bar & Grill. He said the Champions Cup and other tournaments like it at the Overland Park Soccer Complex bring in customers by the dozens.

Esther Honig / KCUR

On a Monday night at the Lee A. Tolbert gymnasium in Kansas City, 80 dancers ages 6-25 gather for one of two weekly practices of The Marching Cobras. 

In gym shorts and sneakers, the dancers break a sweat running through their routines. They move to the beats of a group of young drummers banging out a rhythm loud enough to make your ears pound.

When It's From Stuart Scott, A BooYah Can Matter

Feb 2, 2015
Deb Skodack

Stuart Scott, a sportscaster and anchor on ESPN's SportsCenter, died Jan. 4 at the age of 49. Here is one local woman's remembrance of a chance encounter.

Thank you, Mr. Scott. My kid listened to you.

Only once in my life have I ever sought a souvenir from a celebrity. It was in a Phoenix restaurant in 2004 where I was enjoying a girls’ weekend with my husband’s sisters.

Jamie Burks / The Good Food Blog

At a farm in Kansas City, Kan., a group of young men from are developing their entrepreneurship skills through farming. Boys Grow, a non-profit agency, works with these kids to develop business skills as they sell their agricultural commodities.

On Wednesday's Central Standard, we talked to two of these boys about their experience with Boys Grows and their hopes for the future.

Guests:

Photo courtesy of Charvex.

It’s not a new problem in Kansas City: Large groups of teens flock to the Plaza on summer weekends, and they don’t always follow the rules. 

Kansas City Police Department Central Patrol Operations Sgt. Greg Williams says the plan this summer is to take a harder line if teens are violating any city ordinances.

Lauren Kirby / KCUR

Stacy Lafontant is nervous. The 16-year-old junior at The Paseo Academy of Fine and Performing Arts is about to step up to the podium to do something she’s never done before in public: Recite poetry.

“I’m going up in front of a lot of people,” she says, “and there might be kids that are better than me; I might forget the words.”

For the 21+ crowd, Kansas City is full of entertainment choices. For youth however, the city lacks age-appropriate venues.

Recurring disturbances involving youth on the Plaza and other entertainment districts have caused the city to tighten the citywide curfew ordinance for youth. But the Kansas City area lacks all-ages venues and entertainment options for the city's youth.

On today's Central Standard, we discuss what activities are available to youth in Kansas City, and some initiatives and ideas that would expand those options.

Guests:

U.S. Government / Wikimedia --CC

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback is rolling out a program aimed at boosting reading proficiency among Kansas students. State reading scores are generally near the top of national rankings, but the administration believes Kansas can do better.

A child advocacy group says it's a laudable goal, but its members aren't happy that the initiative will be funded by taking $9 million from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program (TANF).

A new report shows the number of child fatalities in Kansas in 2011 was the lowest on record. Those records date back to 1992, when the Child Death Review Board was established.

The annual report from the review board says 391 children died in Kansas in 2011. Of those deaths, 230 were due to natural causes. Almost two-thirds involved babies who died in their first month of life, most of those deaths were due to premature birth and congenital conditions.

Kristen_a / Flickr - CC

Imagine your young son tells you he wants to play with Barbies. Or that he prefers a purple backpack to a blue one. Perhaps your little girl tells you she doesn’t want a doll for Christmas, but would prefer a monster truck. Would you be uncomfortable?

When raising a child, what gender choices do you make for your child, and what do you let them decide for themselves?  What defines a boy as a boy, or a girl as a girl?

Peggy Lowe / Harvest Public Media

Not yet 9 a.m. on a warm fall day, freshmen Binh Hua and My Nguyen are in protective goggles, long hair pulled back, ready for their chemistry class in a Garden City Community College lab.

The teacher calls the class to order, calling the students “Busters,” short for “Broncbusters,” the college’s mascot and a reminder of this old West town’s history of raising cattle.

Susan B. Wilson / KCUR

According to the National Cheerleading Association, more than 3 million Americans participate in the sport. But cheerleading is no longer just about pom-poms and whipping crowd spirit into a frenzy, it has evolved into a bona fide sport where many athletes — as they are now considered — train year-round.

These athletes work on the strength, balance and gymnastic skills they need to stand out and win competitions. I recently visited a gym in Grandview where teaching girl power and the sport of cheerleading go hand in hand.

The newest book by Kansas City author Angela Cervantes tackles a tough subject: what happens when immigrant families are torn apart. Cervantes' approach is different: the book is written for a young audience aged 8-12, and tackles a topic difficult and all-too-familar to many of her intended readers.

Beth Lipoff

  Growing and eating local food isn’t just about health for one Kansas City group. Their farm fields are fertile ground for developing responsibility and shaping young lives, and the group’s leaders hope to harvest more than just tomatoes. 

When you grow up in the city, chickens aren’t something you see every day, but 13-year-old Malek Looney is getting to know them well.

"They’ll flap their wings and make loud noises and squawk at you. And you’ll be like, 'Oh no, they're mad at something,'" says Looney.

It’s hard enough to keep your kids away from the Xbox on a normal weekday… it must be even tougher when they’re home for winter vacation.  But technology might just help this time around: perhaps you can even convince your child to turn off the video game and pick up a Kindle...or a Nook… an iPad or even (yes!) paper…and dig deep into a great story.

If you're looking for a really good present for your son, daughter, or other kid in your life, consider the gift of reading.

Balancing Competition And Fun In Youth Sports

Jun 25, 2012
Zack Lewandowski / KCUR

More than 52 million young people around the country participate in organized sports, according to the National Council of Youth Sports. 

courtesy of Zachary Weaver

Thirty years ago, legendary Broadway composer Stephen Sondheim might have sensed that the pool of up-and-coming playwrights was a bit lacking and founded Young Playwrights Inc. Based in New York,  the program’s mission is to foster and mentor promising writers 18 and under. For the second year in a row, an Overland Park, Kan. teenager has made the cut.

It’s hard enough to keep your kids away from the Xbox on a normal weekday… it must be even tougher when they’re home for winter vacation.  But technology might just help this time around: perhaps you can even convince your child to turn off the video game and pick up a Kindle...or a Nook… an iPad or even (yes!) paper…and dig deep into a great story.

In Charlize Theron's Oscar-winning role in "Monster,"  she played a serial killer whose unbridled rage was targeted on others. In her new film, "Young Adult," she's also very convincing - and perhaps more unlikable -  as a woman whose hurt is mainly turned inward.

Kansas City, MO – Almost daily polls show a tough uphill battle for Democrats for this election. It's a sea change from the enthusiasm for Obama two years ago, which was especially strong in younger voters. KCUR's Alex Smith recently spoke with some Democratic organizers at UMKC about the changes they've witnessed working on the front lines.