News

Deb Oyler

The Radio Readers Book Club Spring Read concluded with a live two hour event on Sunday, May 1, 2016.  The panel discussed Kent Haruf's Plainsong, S.C. Gwynne's Empire of the Summer Moon, and Gail Caldwell's A Strong West Wind.  

The panel was:  Jane Holwerda from Dodge City, Kansas; Alex Hunt, Jonathan Baker, and Michael Grauer from Canyon, Texas; former Kansas Poet Laureate Denise Low, and Lynne Hewes from Cimarron, Kansas.  

Brian Hardzinski / KGOU

Ty Judd and his friends recently went on an outing to round up rattlesnakes in the Oklahoma hills. Member station KGOU photographer Brian Hardzinski tagged along.

The snakes were delivered to Okeene’s rattlesnake roundup, one of five such festivals each year in Oklahoma.

KHI news service

From the Kansas Health Institute:

Chronic disease risk factors higher among minority groups, adults with lower education levels.

More than one-quarter of adult Kansans say they don’t have any of five major behavioral risk factors for chronic disease, but the picture isn’t so rosy for minorities, men or people with lower incomes.

msnbc.com

Texas looks to be the next battleground in the debate over whether transgender Americans should be allowed to use the bathroom associated with the sex they claim, rather than their birth sex. The Texas Tribune recently published an analysis of the political context surrounding the controversy.

Christopher L. Wood / allaboutbirds.org / Cornell University

This year, 2016, marks the centennial of the first Migratory Bird Treaty, which the United States signed with Great Britain on behalf of Canada. That treaty and the three that followed — with Japan, Russia and Mexico — form the cornerstones of our efforts to conserve migratory birds, like the Cassin’s Sparrow.

quotesgram.com

Philipp Meyer recently spoke at West TExas A&M University in Canyon, Texas.  Cindee Talley had the opportunity to talk with him on the phone, and get to know the man a little bit better.

cfrb.org

This week the Oklahoma legislature passed a resolution to ask the United States Congress to consider adding a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution. As The Claremore Daily Progress reports, the proposal requests that Congress convene a national convention to consider the measure.

politico.com

This week Kansas Governor Sam Brownback announced he’s pulling out of the federal government’s refugee resettlement program. The move comes after Brownback expressed repeated concern about the program for months. The governor said he had failed to get satisfactory answers, so the state is done, reports The Washington Post. The resettlement program has placed more than 2,000 global refugees in Kansas over the past four years.

Luke Runyon / Harvest Public Media

From Harvest Public Media:

The population of Northern Colorado is booming. People are flocking to the area and population numbers are on the rise.

The same thing is happening with dairy cows.

Jae S. Lee / Dallas Morning News

Borden County, in West Texas, has a population of only 676 people—and it’s possibly the most gun-friendly location in the gun-crazy state of Texas. More than one in five people over the age 21 in the county has a license to carry a handgun, reports The Dallas Morning News. That’s far higher than the rate in Texas at large, where only one in 20 has a handgun license.

Wallethub

Amarillo is one of the best cities in America for Hispanic entrepreneurs, according to WalletHub. The personal finance website conducted an in-depth analysis of 2016’s Best Cities for Hispanic Entrepreneurs. Amarillo just missed the top ten, falling at number eleven on the list.

Dayton Daily News

Just three years after Colorado enacted sweeping marijuana legalization legislation, a faction of lawmakers in the state are looking to overhaul the law, reports The Durango Herald. The group has expressed concern about certain aspects of the current legislation. The nearly 50-page proposal has been referred to as a “wish list” by many observers. The proposal is titled, simply, “Concerning Marijuana.”

Cindee Talley

Luke, 

Thanks for letting me share my Texas Bucket List adventure, but mostly thanks for being my friend and my tour guide.  This trip was great because of you.  

Three of us, my dear friends Rick and Kelly Reece, and I left Western Nebraska on Wednesday morning with a goal of experiencing two destinations: Mark Balette's ranch near Goveton, Texas; and the Gulf Coast.

Thomas Bougher / Texas Tribune

When Texas industrial plants break down or close for maintenance, they often spew tons of pollutants into the atmosphere. And they aren’t being properly held accountable, reports The Texas Tribune. A new report has found that 679 facilities from the Gulf of Mexico to West Texas emitted more than 68 million pounds of sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, benzene and other toxic substances last year.

Amy Mayer / Harvest Public Media

From Harvest Public Media

Near Alexander, Iowa, on a cloudy spring Tuesday, Josh Nelson watches a bright red Case IH Magnum tractor pull a 24-row planter and crest a small hill, dropping corn seed at careful intervals. Nelson says his family farm dodged a weather bullet this week, but it’s just one of many hurdles this season promises.

Wallethub

How common is gambling in your state? In some places, like Utah, it’s prohibited by law. In others, like South Dakota, it’s rampant.

Prowers Journal

Recent precipitation has helped to alleviate drought conditions across parts of Colorado, reports The Prowers Journal. Parts of the central mountains and Front Range saw as much as 3 inches of precipitation. And there’s more good news: short and long term forecasts favor continued precipitation. And reservoir storage looks good, so there are no immediate concerns for water providers.

Wikimedia Commons

If Nebraska were to switch from coal to wind energy, it could save the state almost two billion gallons of water a year, according to the Center for Rural Affairs. Nebraska currently ranks fourth in the nation for wind energy potential and 13th for solar power potential. But the state relies heavily on coal to provide energy for its citizens.

Just Swingin

Apr 28, 2016
dailymail.co.uk

Once upon a long time ago, children played on asphalt or gravel playgrounds filled with tall metal swing sets and finger pinching chains. Those thick links froze little hands November through February and roasted those same palms July through September.

Allison Herrera / KOSU

The Trail of Tears is one of the most shameful and painful episodes in American history. But now, reports KOSU, the descendants of the original Trail’s travelers have found a poignant—and grueling—way to honor their ancestors. In the winter of 1838, 16,000 Cherokee Indians were marched at gunpoint from Georgia to Oklahoma. Their land was taken from them so that white settlers could develop the territory. 4,000 Cherokee died on the thousand-mile walk. In 1984, contemporary Cherokees began an annual bike ride over the original trail’s route.

kansas.com

A Kansas school has found a new approach to education that teachers say is resulting in more concentration among the kids, reports The Wichita Eagle. In fact, student behavior has improved and the overall atmosphere at the school has changed. What’s the secret? A program called Morning Mindfulness. It’s a half-hour of play therapy, yoga, coloring, crafts and other activities designed to calm children and help them focus before study begins.

Business is booming in Colorado, reports The Prowers Journal. According to a new report, in the first three months of the year business formation has rebounded. Colorado employment is also projected to expand over the next two quarters. The news was a welcome relief after two consecutive quarters of business decline.

Texas Tribune

In Texas, all state agencies must win legislative permission every 12 years to remain open. But who decides if these agencies stay alive? The task is handled by what’s known as the Sunset Advisory Commission, reports The Texas Tribune. It’s the commission’s job to periodically recommend changes in how agencies operate.

Daffodils and Poetry

Apr 27, 2016
bay.ifas.ufl.edu

 Plants and poetry are frequent partners, and perhaps no combination of the literary and the horticultural is better known that Wordsworth and daffodils.  His love of the great outdoors prompted him to walk across England and then all of Europe, during which time he penned his famous descriptive poem that begins,

"I wandered lonely as a cloud/That floats on high o'er vales and hills, When all at once I saw a crowd/A host, of golden daffodils."

This week we're exploring my fondness for daffodils, and the reasons they're perfect for growing on the High Plains.

Brian Hardzinski / KGOU

An Oklahoma legislator is drawing heat for remarks he made last week concerning African-Americans and Native Americans, reports member station KGOU. The statements by state Rep. Todd Russ, a Republican of Cordell, came during house debate about the state’s new alcohol laws. Russ opposes the laws, which would allow wine and strong beer sales in grocery and convenience stores. During the debates, Russ said Native Americans are “predisposed to alcoholism.”

State of Arkansas

From the Kansas Health Institute:

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Thursday signed an appropriation bill into law and used a line-item veto to ensure continuation of the state’s Medicaid expansion, ending a two-week budget standoff.

The Medicaid expansion covers more than 267,000 Arkansans who make less than 138 percent of the federal poverty level (annually about $16,000 for an individual or a little more than $33,000 for a family of four).

Marjorie Kamys Cotera / Texas Tribune

When Texas lawmakers leave office, they often have a sizable amount of money still sitting in their campaign war chests. What they choose to do with that money can vary widely, reports The Texas Tribune. For example, Sen. Kevin Eltife, who is not seeking re-election, had well over a million at the end of last year. And Rep.

The Ada News

This week marked the 83rd anniversary of the first White House performance by the Chickasaw storyteller Te Ata. Te Ata was a graduate of the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma, reports The Ada News. She performed at the first state dinner of Franklin Roosevelt’s presidency in 1933.

Shelby Knowles / Texas Tribune

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton says he does in deed plan to run for re-election in 2018. This came as a surprise to some observers, including The Texas Tribune. The Tea Party favorite is currently under multiple indictments.

McClean County Museum of History / Bloomington Pantagraph

One-room schoolhouses used to be the thriving heart of American agricultural communities. When children weren’t learning their three Rs, the buildings served as community centers and a town meeting place. Sadly, as reported by the Bloomington Pantagraph, most of these schools have gone the way of steam locomotives and wooden silos.  The closures began 70 years ago during the first wave of American public school consolidations.

Pages