Dale Bolton

Director of Programming and Operations

Dale is responsible for all of HPPR's programming. As Director of Programming and Operations, he supervise the programming staff  and directs the development of new programs.

Dale was born in Southern California and is a graduate of Humboldt State University in Arcata, CA.  His history with HPPR goes back to 1987 when he took the job as HPPR's third Executive Director. In 1995 he left the station to pursue other interests including managing a retail computer store and designing computer databases. Dale rejoined HPPR in December 2010 as the operations director and later became the director of programming and operations.

Location:Garden City, KS studios

Phone:(800) 678-7444 ext 24 or (620) 275-7444 ext 24

Ways to Connect

Following 33 years of tradition, High Plains Public Radio again offers listeners across the High Plains special programming to welcome-in and celebrate the New Year.  Begin New Year’s eve with Capitol Steps: Politics Takes a Holiday at 9 am and A Paul Winter Solstice 2013 at 10 am CT followed in the evening by Toast of the Nation at 9 pm CT featuring Wynton Marsalis playing the music of Louis Armstrong's Hot Fives & Sevens, live from Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola in New York City.  

On New Year’s Day morning it’s a classical celebration on New Year's Day Live from Vienna at 10 am CT featuring the Vienna Philharmonic and its ever popular annual New Year's Day concert live from the Golden Hall of the Musikverein in Vienna.  Click here for full New Year’s program details.

What Are Invasives?

Dec 23, 2013
Hillebrand Steve / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Biologists and rangeland conservationists discuss problems caused by the aggressive invasions of native and exotic shrubs such as Tamarisk, Russian Olive, Eastern Red Cedar and reeds on western Great Plains rangelands. These pests adversely impact ag economics, the ecology and native wildlife on the Plains.

Texas A&M AgriLife Research / Dr. Qingwu Xue

Drought tolerance in wheat has been increased through breeding over the years, but a group of Texas A&M AgriLife Research scientists in Amarillo wanted to determine what plant physiological characteristics were making the biggest difference.

Lori Potter / Kearney Hub

Jerry Stevens enrolled in the Rainwater-Basin Wetlands Reserve Enhancement Program, which restores and protects wetlands in fields under production by allowing center pivots to cross the rainwater basins. It's win-win. The program protects a wetland, and allows the producer to farm the circle around it.

Kansas Ground Water Management

New legislation in Kansas makes it possible for producers to work within water conservation districts to create Locally Enhanced Management Areas (LEMAs) and agree among themselves how much groundwater use they can curtail. Brad Oelke talks about the first LEMA, which began in January 2013, and how NRCS may be able to help irrigators reduce consumption.


Realizing the vital importance of the Ogallala Aquifer to the High Plains, The Natural Resources Conservation Service launched the Ogallala Aquifer Initiative. Playa lakes recharge the aquifer, and because of that, NRCS provides ways, through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, for producers to rehabilitate playas in cropland. NRCS Conservationists can help landowners develop a conservation plan that meets their goals, using this and other USDA conservation programs.

Wikimedia Commons

A grouse of the open grassland, the Greater Prairie-Chicken is known for its mating dance, performed by males on flat display sites on shortgrass prairie called leks. Their range extends from northern Oklahoma through the Flinthills and northern Kansas, and on north through the centers of Nebraska and the Dakotas. Sarah Sortum and her brother found their way back to the family ranch in the central Nebraska sandhills by starting an eco-tourism business, allowing bird watchers to see the chicken in its mixed-grass home.

Tuesday, 12/31/13 3:30 pm

The web stream appears to be working properly. If you are still having problems connecting, please call the station at 800-678-7444 or write to me at dbolton@hppr.org. I will need to know when you tried to connect, your method of connection (Tune-In, NPR App, direct from HPPR web site, etc.) and any error messages you received. Thanks for your patience during this transition and thanks for listening. 

Tuesday 12/31/13 10:00 am

Wikimedia Commons

The Ferruginous is North America's largest hawk. Its habitat includes grasslands, deserts, and other open areas with isolated shrubs or trees where less than 50 percent of the land is under cultivation. The raptor preys on small mammals, many of which would be considered pests to ranchers. Its favorite meal is the prairie dog; a depopulation of the prairie dog on the High Plains has negatively impacted this hawk's numbers.

One of the great holiday traditions in America, the choirs of Morehouse and Spelman Colleges -- two of the most prestigious historically black institutions in the nation -- get together to present a spine-tingling concert program. This encore presentation features the best works of the last several years. It's a joyous celebration of the schools' tradition of singing excellence, with their trademark mixture of spirituals and carols. Korva Coleman hosts.

Wikimedia Commons

The Sandhill Crane is a tall gray bird of open grasslands, meadows and wetlands. The most numerous crane species in the world, this bird congregates in huge numbers during migration between wintering grounds in the Southwest and its breeding grounds in Canada, Alaska and Eastern Asia.

Alan Vernon

They're not sport birds, but they are important to the ecological balance of range land. We look at the lives and habitats of the birds, and how conservation initiatives like Conservation Reserve Program helps these species.

William C. Johnson

Duane Cheney, from the Kansas Alliance for Wetlands and Streams, talks to landowners and operators in western Kansas about the benefits of enrolling playas in NRCS's Wetlands Reserve Program or Continuous CRP, thereby taking those "mudholes" out of production once and for all and converting them into wonderful wildlife habitat that also helps recharge the Ogallala aquifer. Doug Duell talks about his experience rehabbing a 40-acre playa on his western Kansas cropland.

A Centennial Ceremony of Carols: A Benjamin Britten Holiday Celebration celebrates the Britten centennial with a holiday program created in the renowned WGBH Fraser Performance Studio featuring the NEC Chamber Chorus, the New England Conservatory’s elite choral ensemble led by Erica Washburn, along with the NEC Brass Ensemble and the Back Bay Ringers. In addition to the Hymn to the Virgin, the centerpiece of the program will be Britten’s Ceremony of Carols, which will also feature other Britten holiday works and standard carols arranged by Sir David Willcocks.

Dave Hilfterty grows dryland winter wheat and irrigated corn in Perkins County, Nebraska. Dave had a challenge that was perfect for Wetlands Reserve Program assistance. Amongst his five irrigation circles there's a lagoon, which he got tired of trying to farm through.

A one-hour holiday special, hosted by Bill McGlaughlin, featuring medieval and baroque music.

As part of the world-renowned choir’s 25th Anniversary Tour of the US, the Tallis Scholars, with director Peter Phillips, perform a stunning holiday concert exploring themes of love, redemption, and of course, the Nativity in concert at St. Paul Church in Cambridge, Mass.  Presented by the Boston Early Music Festival and hosted by Cathy Fuller. 

Chris Helzer / The Nature Conservancy

Realizing the importance of the Ogallala Aquifer to High Plains states, NRCS created the Ogallala Aquifer Initiative to attempt to reduce the quantity of water removed from the aquifer, improve water quality using conservation practices, and enhance the economic viability of croplands and rangelands in the region. This episode explains how playas fit into these goals.


A significant report published by the National Academy of Sciences stresses the need to conserve groundwater. This episode focuses on two ways that is happening: 1) the USDA promotes Ogallala Aquifer conservation with NRCS money for cost-share projects, and 2) the state of Kansas changes water-rights laws to foster a culture of conservation rather than consumption.


Stretching from western Texas to South Dakota, the Ogallala Aquifer supports nearly one-fifth of the wheat, corn, cotton and cattle produced in the United States. Underlying approximately 225,000 square miles of the Great Plains, water from the aquifer is vital to agricultural, municipal and industrial development. Approximately 30 percent of all groundwater used for irrigation in America is drawn from the Ogallala Aquifer.

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

This is a regional grazing group located in south-central Kansas and north-central Oklahoma on 5.4 million acres of mixed-grass and sand-sage prairies. The region is ecologically important because it is Kansas’ second largest, in-tact tract of native prairie (second only to the Flint Hills), and is home to a number of declining wildlife species which require large, unfragmented tracts of native prairie. The group works with ranchers in its area to educate how best to manage grasslands to produce wildlife, clean air and water,  as well as income from livestock grazing.

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department

This partnership - consisting of agencies, non-governmental organizations and landowners - is working to control invasive plants along the banks of the Canadian River in the Texas panhandle and western Oklahoma. Salt cedar, Eastern Red Cedar and Russian Olive trees are being controlled if not eradicated.

Chicago-based musician Susan Werner has worked on concept albums before – from jazz standards to pop classics to Gospel music for agnostics. Her new album is described as “egg meets art,” celebrating the culture of agriculture through music. Harvest Public Media reporter Laura Spencer spoke with Susan Werner. Her new CD, Hayseed, was co-commissioned by the University of Nebraska’s Lied Center for the Performing Arts and the Institute for Agriculture and Natural Resources (IANR).

Roger Mills, Prescribed Fire Association

The association formed in 2006 and covers Roger Mills and Beckam counties. The group addresses the four common reasons people do not use prescribed fire: liability, training/experience, labor and equipment.

The Spokesman-Review

    This group's mission is to partner with ranchers in the Sandhill region of north-central Nebraska to identify, prioritize, plan and implement projects that benefit private ranching, wildlife and vegetative diversity and associated water supplies. Besides ranchers, members include representatives of local communities, groups, organizations and state and federal agencies.

Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism

This group's mission is to sustain vibrant natural and human communities of the Republican River Basin by promoting good stewardship of its land, water and wildlife. The group addresses three aspects of long-term landscape sustainability: economics, education and conservation.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Habitat conservation requires local support, collaboration and leadership. When landowners, community leaders and resource managers work collaboratively to conserve natural resources, that's when the majority of habitat work takes place. We examine what local conservation partnerships are - and why they're important.


This raptor migrates from its winter home in Argentina into western North America and breeds as far north as Canada. It's fate is tied to the amount of open rangeland left in the western prairie, and lots of habitat has been lost in the 20th Century after range land was broken out and farmed. The bird helps producers by eating insects, mammals and reptiles considered by producers to be pests. Conservation Reserve Program-enrolled land provides the type of habitat the bird can thrive in.


Art Gomez of Kansas Alliance for Wetlands and Streams discusses his job "selling" producers and landowners on permitting 30-year or permanent easements on wetlands such as playa lakes. Darryl Birkenfeld discusses his work as director of the Ogallala Commons at Nazareth, TX. The organization's mission is education and community support.


The Mountain Plover is a shorebird that spends little time on the beach and lives on the open Plains and nowhere near mountains. Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory offers financial incentives to farmers of the southwest Nebraska panhandle to till around their nests - which often are in crop fields.