HPPR Communities

washingtonpost.com

The population in the United States is rapidly growing.  It’s expected to expand by 49 million people by 2030 reports the Washington Post.

More people along with Baby Boomers retiring will dramatically alter the age demographics of many communities, leaving some with larger burdens of social services and fewer workers to help fund them. 

Plains, Kansas is plugging away at addressing an issue facing many small towns on the High Plains – the lack of a grocery store. So far, about $400,000 in funding has been secured through tax credits, grants, donations and fund-raisers. That’s towards a total estimated cost of roughly 1.4 million dollars to buy land, build the new structure, and equip, stock and staff the store. The project is featured in this a recent New York Times article. While recognizing the determined efforts of community residents, it poses the question of whether the local grocery, if successfully built, will be able to overcome the “Walmart” effect. (Plains is located 25 miles northeast of Liberal, where there’s a Walmart, Dillons grocery and Asian, Mexican and natural food markets.)

Rhonda's Secret Hot Chocolate

Dec 24, 2014
Kathleen Holt

If you were unable to join friends of High Plains Public Radio for Amarillo’s Parade of Lights this month, you can enjoy a bit of the fun by making Rhonda’s secret hot chocolate mix.

HPPR board members, volunteers and staff enjoyed a studio open house against the background of music provided by Amy and Greg, then served hot chocolate during Center City’s annual parade. 

Texas Underwriting Representative, Rhonda Dittfurth arranged for donations allowing HPPR to distribute hot chocolate to more than 300 parade goers.

getruralkansas.com

Lovers of sun light, rejoice. Soon, the winter solstice will pass for another year. Even though days grow longer only a few minutes at a time, we’ll soon enjoy more sunshine than darkness in a 24-hour span. Unfortunately, it takes a month or so of incremental minutes before longer days are noticeable, so until then let’s bask in the glow of Christmas lights.

A ballot initiative being promoted by a Lakewood, Colorado couple to keep the state permanently on Mountain Daylight Time could make time keeping tricky for those crossing through four Kansas counties on the Colorado border. 

Sonja Salzburg for Harvest Public Media

Many beer aficionados are familiar with the rare breweries run by Trappist monks. The beer is highly sought after, but it’s not the only food or drink made by a religious order. Many abbeys and convents have deep roots in agriculture, combining farm work with prayer.

KU Medical Center recruiting the next generation of rural health workers

Nov 27, 2014
Andy Marso /KHI News Service

In the last two years Seth Nutt has traveled to nearly every corner of Kansas, introducing rural students to health care professionals.

Grassroots Art Center

Many small towns have welcome signs that proclaim their state athletic championships from years gone by.  But Lucas, Kansas will now be able to welcome visitors with a sign stating, “Welcome to Lucas, home of the No. 2 restroom in the country -2014”.

The Prowers Journal

There’s good news for veterans in southeastern Colorado.  The VA Medical Clinic now has a permanent location Lamar reported the Prowers Journal.  When the Prowers Medial Clinic closed over a year and a half ago, a mobile trailer was brought in as a stop-gap measure. 

The size of the unauthorized immigrant population in Colorado and Kansas fell between 2009 and 2012 and stayed the same in Texas and Oklahoma, according to an updated tracking report from the Pew Center for Research. 

Here's a short interview with Lindsay London, the rally coordinator for the Amarillo event taking place on Saturday, September 6 in Medi-Park.

Skip Delivers Bountiful Garden Basket

Aug 13, 2014

Each spring Skip Mancini, host of Growing on the High Plains, stops by HPPR's studio to help-out during the station's on-air membership campaign. While at the studio, she also holds a drawing, in which she'll  take off across the High Plains to hand-deliver one lucky listener a giant basket full of her garden's summer harvest. 

national.deseretnews.com

Between 2012 and 2013, 11.7 percent of the population moved according to the U.S. Census Bureau.  About a third of those moved because of “family-related reasons,” the Wall Street Journal reported.

commons.wikimedia.org

Communication is heartbreaking for families who have a loved one with Alzheimer’s.  A new music therapy project in Central and Western Kansas experienced a bit of a breakthrough reported KMUW.

rikoooo.com

Imagine learning in redesigned space of a 153-foot jet.  Students across the high plains will soon have that opportunity. 

Jill Replogle/Fronteras Desk

Several hundred teenagers filed into a swanky event center in Heber in California’s Imperial Valley on a recent Friday morning. By all accounts, they look like typical high schoolers — smacking gum and texting away. The vast majority were Latino.



Amarillo: New Logo In Question

Nov 12, 2013
connectamarillo.com

The city of Amarillo unveiled its new logo at the kickoff of the centennial celebration this weekend, and the design is under review after officials discovered the design is similar to one used by a Dubai company according to a recent story in the Amarillo Globe-News.

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.

Peggy Lowe/Harvest Public Media

GARDEN CITY, Kan. — Sister Janice Thome’s office is a 2003 brown Ford Focus with a backseat piled high with paperwork and a prayer book.

Thome puts 125,000 miles a year on this car, picking up boxes from the food pantry, finding a mattress for a newcomer, delivering a sick soul to a doctor’s appointment. All the while, she fields emergency calls on her flip phone, responding to her mission to serve the poor of Garden City, out on the plains of southwest Kansas.

This day, Thome is teaching her teen parenting class at the alternative high school.

Matt Nager/The Wall Street Journal

In a town and county named in honor of Horacy Greeley, the man credited with saying "Go West, young man," officials fear for the town's survival after three decades of accelerating population decline.

Greeley County, Kansas does not have demographics on its side. Rural areas across the Great Plains tend to experience high death rates as baby boomers age and die, while young people move away.  The county has lost over a third of its population since 1960.

Abbie Fentress Swanson/Harvest Public Media

NOEL, MO - It’s almost 9 a.m., and Noel Primary School teacher Erin McPherson is helping a group of Spanish-speaking students complete English language exercises. But it’s tough going.

One student in a bright blue T-shirt – 9-year-old Isac Martinez – has not yet picked up his pencil. He’s clearly sick. When McPherson asks him what’s wrong, Isac’s small voice is barely audible in between coughs. He says he threw up four times last night but did not go to a doctor.

Peggy Lowe/Harvest Public Media

Harvest Public Media reporter Peggy Lowe has been visiting Garden City working on a series of stories profiling “meat packing towns” and their economic, social and cultural life and challenges.  Fittingly, one of her first contacts was Sister Janice Thome who provided a ground-level orientation to the community.  Here is Peggy’s first field note featuring Sister Janice.

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The billboards that dot the long gray line of Interstate 70 west from Kansas City tried to lure me to tourist towns that promised Wild West shows, lots of sunflowers and even an Oz Winery.

You may or may not agree with it, but Google has some interesting things to say about where you live.  You just have to know how to ask.

By manipulating the “autocomplete” function implemented by Google, bloggers and journalists alike recently discovered they can trick the search engine into surreptitiously suggesting what may appear to be biased or over-generalized judgments regarding various geographic locales.

A civic lesson for rural towns

Jul 11, 2013
Abbie Fentress Swanson / Harvest Public Media

It’s not just lifelong farmers who feel the pull of the land as they get older. For some Americans, retirement is an opportunity to begin the farming dream.

“I wanted to be able to be active and have a pastime that ensured physical activity,” said beginning farmer Tom Thomas, who at 65 still has the physical fitness to wrestle and brand steers at his son’s ranch in Oklahoma. 

I recently had the opportunity to sit down and talk with Skip Mancini and Jan Evans about a project, one near and dear to Skip's heart.  Many of you know Skip as the voice of, Growing on the High Plains, but you may not know how Alzheimer's personally touched the life of both her parents.

kansas.com

The First Presbyterian Church calls Ashland, Kansas home.  The rural church has seen attendance, as well as hope, rise in the past year.  Why?  Because of a treasure found by Minister Marsha Granberry when she was cleaning out the attic.  Granberry said, in an article by Becky Tanner, for the Wichita Eagle, she was sorting through boxes and found a box of bibles in different languages.  The 15 bibles are from the 1920s and 1930s, and one bible, written in Cherokee, may have been printed in the 1860s.

Elementary students in the Texas panhandle are part of a new project teaching how to grow food with your own hands, and the nutritional value it puts into your mouth.

Swingin' Gate Ranch

Marshal Allen Bailey's Swingin' Gate Ranch is the broadcast home of Western Swing & Other Things.

Howell Social Club

The nearby entirely exclusive Howell Social Club hosts the area's classiest events, including the Spring 2011 Woodchopper's Ball.

Abner's Guitar Shop