Rock Springs Transmit Site Off The Air

Due to tower work, KUWZ / KZUW 90.5, will be off the air on Thursday, May 7th, for some unscheduled maintenance starting at 8:00 a.m. The work will take no longer than 6 hours.

Top Stories

Leigh Paterson / Inside Energy

INSIDE ENERGY: Oil Boom Brings New Diversity To Rural Western States

Over the last few years, Wyoming's African American population has grown faster than in any other state. According to census data, between 2010 and 2013, the number of black residents doubled. In some counties, especially those with a lot of energy development or tourism, that increase was more like 300, 500 or even 800 percent. Other rural Western states, all with unemployment rates well below the national average, are experiencing a similar trend. According to Wenlin Liu, Principal...
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Old Crow Medicine Show Concert Drawing

Begin your summer on the right note by entering our drawing for tickets to Old Crow Medicine Show and the Devil Makes Three at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in June. Support Public Radio in the Cowboy State!

Prudential Spirit of Community Awards / spirit.prudential.com

Wyoming’s top two youth volunteers were recognized in the nation’s capital this week. Laura Harris of Green River and Trinity Rich of Douglas are the Prudential Spirit of Community Award winners. Among other things, Rich helps the elderly and neighbors with chores and tasks, and Harris helps raise money to grant the wishes of sick children.

Volunteers in grades 5 through 12 were encouraged to apply, and Wyoming had one of the youngest winners in the country. Trinity Rich is just 11 years old and is in fifth grade at Douglas Upper Elementary School.

Oil prices hit a new high for the year Wednesday — closing at just under $61 a barrel. They've been rallying for a month, but nobody's predicting $4-per-gallon gasoline anytime soon. And some analysts say weak demand will send oil prices down again.

The recent rise follows an historic drop in prices, which were as low as about $45 a barrel less than two months ago.

So to understand what's going on now, let's look at what sent prices tumbling in the first place

University of Wyoming

The University of Wyoming Board of Trustees is gathering public input this week into its process to find a successor to President Dick McGinity.

McGinity announced he’ll step down when his contract expires next year—but only if the presidential search is successful.

The search is to be an open process—unlike the controversial closed search that produced President Robert Sternberg in a few years ago. Trustee Mel Baldwin of Afton is optimistic that this approach will be more successful.   

Wyoming Public Media

The final piece of the puzzle for a long-awaited Wind River Job Corps program has been found.  Management and Training Corporation of Utah has been chosen by the U.S. Department of Labor to operate the Wind River Job Corps Center.  

Job Corps trains students who come from families below the federal poverty level. Sandy Barton of the Fremont County Board for Cooperative Education Services has been working on the project for ten years and says the selection means that Wyoming’s first Job Corps will finally open.

Last week, WyoTech in Laramie laid off more than 40 employees. WyoTech and its parent company, Zenith, declined to comment on the layoffs, but cited falling enrollment in a press release Wednesday. They said there would be about a 30% reduction of staff at the Laramie campus.

Dan Furphy is the President and CEO of the Albany County Chamber of Commerce. He says he’s seen enrollment ebb and flow before, but never such a large layoff.

Wyoming business Bright AgroTech will be in full bloom at the Milan World Fair this year—literally.

One whole wall of the American exhibit will showcase the company’s vertical gardening design. Long tubes with plants growing out of them move wave-like along the length of the wall. CEO Nate Storey says he convinced the American’s architect James Biber to use his design with the argument that the future of agriculture is in vertical farming.

Storey says the theme of this year’s World Fair is “energy and food.”

Leigh Paterson / Inside Energy

Over the last few years, Wyoming's African American population has grown faster than in any other state. According to census data, between 2010 and 2013, the number of black residents doubled. In some counties, especially those with a lot of energy development or tourism, that increase was more like 300, 500 or even 800 percent. Other rural Western states, all with unemployment rates well below the national average, are experiencing a similar trend.

Flickr Creative Commons

A report commissioned by Pew Charitable Trusts predicts that sage grouse will be extinct in 100 years and could be gone from the Powder River Basin in 30 years, if their decline continues at its current rate. The Garton report, as it’s known, was released last week in the “Environment and Energy Daily,” an online magazine. Wyoming Sage Grouse Coordinator Tom Christiansen says he has concerns with the study--not the method or the analysis, but its conclusion that conservation efforts aren’t working.

Wikimedia Commons

Hillary Clinton’s campaign recently announced it will begin organizing in Wyoming. The move is part of the campaign’s goal to bring grassroots campaigning to all states before the 2016 presidential election.

Clinton is the only presidential hopeful with a presence in Wyoming so far. The campaign has hired Laramie local Peter Bishop, who previously worked on Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign.

Aimee Van Cleave is the Wyoming Democratic Party’s Interim Executive Director. She says Hillary’s campaign is getting off to an early start.  

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Topic Of The Week

Do you think the governor should expand the protected habitat of sage grouse in his core area strategy, which is up for review this year?

Open Spaces

Miles Bryan

With Trucking Accidents Rising, Industry Debates When Drivers Should Be Sleeping

Nathan Brooks drives all over the country delivering goods as a long-haul trucker, and when I met him at a rest stop just outside of Laramie, Wyoming, he was about to start his favorite drive— back home to Alabama. Brooks has been a trucker for twenty-seven years and says the job is getting harder than it used to be. “Everything is more expensive now. There is a lot more traffic on the road. And you are more likely to get caught up in some kind of accident.” Truckers like Brooks deliver...
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Meet-And-Greet

Have some coffee with WPR at Java Moon in Sheridan, Thursday May 21st, at 7:30am. This is an opportunity to meet listeners, hear concerns, compliments, and to get to know the people of Sheridan.

Arts & Culture

Photo by Dario Acosta

Studio Sessions: Jami Lynn

Singer-songwriter Jami Lynn's South Dakota home makes a mark on her music. Here are two of Jami's animal-themed songs, including one from her brand new 2015 release, Fall Is a Good Time to Die. Coyote, Why Ya Been Lookin’ so Thin? Mom Raccoon
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Gear Up For Summer Festivals In Wyoming

Get ready for a summer filled with music! There's quite a variety of Wyoming music festivals throughout the state and we've got you covered.

Travel The World & Support WPR

Explore your favorite destinations while contributing to your favorite radio station! Choose from countries all around the world or National Parks in your backyard.