Kansas

Making KS redder
8:00 pm
Sun February 16, 2014

Brownback asserts a “Kansas Purpose” in NYT interview

Credit Kansas Office of the Governor

Kansas Governor Sam Brownback is quoted as avowedly pursuing “a strategy that builds a strong state in the future on the red state model,” in a recent New York Times article on his administration to date.  According to the article, Brownback has delivered on his promise of a “conservative revolution” but the results and benefits to the state aren’t yet clear. 

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Language maps (2)
9:01 pm
Thu November 21, 2013

THANKSgiving in the Panhandle and ThanksGIVing in Kansas – speaking of food on the High Plains

Residents of the Texas Panhandle are more likely to use the more southern pronunciation of emphasizing the THANKS in Thanksgiving (light blue shading).

If you live in the Texas Panhandle you’re more likely to be discussing plans for THANKSgiving rather than ThanksGIVing, as you might it Kansas.  There’s commonality in how we speak across the High Plains but also differences.  Click through the slide show above to view some food-related differences in pronunciation and usage across the region. 

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Language maps (1)
9:43 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Where we don't speak the same language across the High Plains

Credit Bert Vaux (study data) and Joshua Katz (map)

We think of the High Plains as a region with a common geography, environment and economy.  But there are differences in language and dialect.  In some cases Panhandle Texans talk like other Texans and in others case they speak more like western Kansans.  And in still other cases there are differences once you cross the state line into eastern Colorado.  Browse through the dialect maps below to see some of these distinctions.  

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Harvest Public Media story
6:55 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

More Kansans to work for food stamps

Credit Aaron Brazell, Technosailor / flickr commons

Hear the audio version of Laura's story

Last week, Kansas let a 2009 government waiver expire that provided food stamps for the unemployed. Now, able-bodied Kansans between 18 and 49 who do not have dependents, have to work or be in a job training program to have access to the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP), or food stamps.

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Americans rank the states
8:12 am
Mon September 2, 2013

The gossip on states

The darkest colored state had the highest number of votes, the whitest colored states had next to none.

Side-by-side Kansas and Colorado were ranked first as having “the worst” and “the most beautiful” scenery in the country, respectively, according to a recent poll by Business Insider.  It is not clear whether eastern Colorado was considered part of Kansas or Colorado by the poll respondents.

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Natural Resources & Energy
8:01 pm
Wed August 7, 2013

High Plains States among Top in Wind Production

Wind turbines near Woodward, Okla.
Credit Logan Layden/StateImpact Oklahoma

Texas remains on top of the nation in total wind energy produced in 2012, while Oklahoma, Kansas, and Colorado are not far behind, according to a recent report by the U.S. Department of Energy.

Additions to each state's wind generation capacity last year are keeping the four plains states in the top ten of wind energy producers, as indicated by the DOE's Wind Technologies Market Report.

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Health
8:01 pm
Tue August 6, 2013

Grant Funding Seeks to Get Rural Kansas Access to Dental Services

Dutch Finn, 8, and his mom, Shelby Longren, wait in line for dental treatment at the Manhattan National Guard Armory, Kansas Mission of Mercy Dental Clinic.
Credit Ann Williamson/Kansas Health Institute

A $100,000 grant is being awarded to a Kansas organization to study potential solutions to bring dental care closer to home for thousands of rural Kansans.

DentaQuest Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the major national dental insurance company, awarded Oral Health Kansas the grant, reports Kansas Health Institute.

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Technology
8:01 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

Why is Amarillo in So Many Songs? …and Other Google Autocomplete Assertions

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.

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Harvest Public Media story
1:02 pm
Wed January 16, 2013

Grover Norquist endorses Kansas immigration plan

Grover Norquist

An unlikely coalition of business and social interests tried last year to get the legislature to establish a state program that would help ag businesses hire undocumented workers and let them legally stay in the state. Conservative lightning rod Grover Norquist – more known for his anti-tax crusades than his immigration beliefs – endorsed the plan during a speech in Topeka this week. He likened current U-S immigration law to the 55-mile-per-hour speed limit enacted in the 70s. Norquist says most people broke that law, too.

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Prairie Ramblings Episode
8:01 pm
Thu December 27, 2012

Dust Storms and Attacking Tumbleweeds

Growing up, I heard story after story about the Dust Bowl from my parents and grandparents.   Dad described his mother shoveling rather than sweeping post-storm drifts.  Grandma told how she placed wet sheets over her children’s beds to protect their lungs as they slept.  She’d launder the linens the next day because they got so dirty.

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HS graduation rates
5:05 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

High School report card: TX 88%, KS 83%, CO 74%, OK no report

Sharon Springs KS High School graduation, May 2012

The U.S.

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Growing on the High Plains episode
8:02 pm
Sun July 8, 2012

Hollyhocks

Hollyhocks thrive in this arid climate we call home.  It does not flower the
first year, but sends up a tall stalk the next that will bloom most of the
summer.  The best time to plant your seeds is late summer, giving it time to
sprout and get established before winter sets in.  The most common disease
is rust, which can be managed by actively removing affected areas or with
chemicals.