laramie

University of Wyoming Geological Museum

The life-size copper Tyrannosaurus Rex statue that stands guard outside the University of Wyoming Geological Museum celebrated its 50th birthday on April 11, 2014. The museum hosted two cake parties in celebration for the beloved statue. Wyoming Public Radio’s Anna Rader and Micah Schweizer visited the T. Rex and heard from passers-by and well-wishers.

Anna Rader

Even though he doesn’t like the term, Laramie’s Jeff Duloz is a formidable one-man band, with crunchy guitar and primal kick drum underpinning his simmering vocals.

The Tronstad Ranch

Wyoming has a long tradition of sheep ranching.  The first flocks arrived with Mormon pioneers in the eighteen-eighties. By the early nineteen-hundreds there were six million sheep and Wyoming led the nation in wool production.  Now, there are fewer than 400-thousand sheep in the state and competition in the global market is stiff.  But Wyoming Public Radio’s Melodie Edwards visited one family that believes that—against all odds--the life of the flockmaster is worth keeping alive. 

The University of Wyoming won the national college basketball championship in 1943. Shortly after their triumph, several Cowboys started training for a bigger fight: World War II.

A new movie about the Cowboys’ epic championship game victory over St. John’s University in fabled Madison Square Garden premieres tonight, March 6, in Laramie at The Wyo Theater at 7pm.

WPM Music Hosts Introduce The Steep Canyon Rangers

Mar 3, 2014

Grady Kirkpatrick and Tom Wilhelm, Wyoming Public Media hosts of Morning Music and the Ranch Breakfast Show, showed off their music industry connections. They were lucky enough to introduce the Steep Canyon Rangers at the Gryphon Theatre in Laramie during their show on March 1st.

Stories about the Snowy Range Ski Area, a sticky car crash, and how the Centennial train depot became a museum.

Subscribe to the Wyoming Stories podcast here.

Micah Schweizer

Melanie O’Hara grew up on the far side of the Hogback in Centennial. She reflects on the astonishing diversity of Centennial in the 19th century.

Micah Schweizer

Here’s a new song from Mississippi-raised, Laramie-based singer-songwriter Jason Burge.

Andy Carpenean/Laramie Boomerang

Becky and Aaron Maddox own the Snowy Range Ski Area west of Laramie.  Becky is a fourth generation Laramie resident, and Aaron grew up in Steamboat Springs. 

The couple grew up skiing, and their love for the sport motivated them to invest their lives in Snowy Range.  Becky and Aaron describe how the ski area is not only their business, but is their passion, their family, and their life.

Bob Beck

For over a decade the state has struggled with making sure all citizens had access to health care.  Much of this had to do with the fact that many Wyoming citizens can’t afford health insurance.  The federal affordable care act was supposed to help.

AP Photo/Casper Star-Tribune, Dan Cepeda

12-year-old Laramie pianist James Wilson was one of only two Americans to compete in the prestigious Lagny-sur-Marne piano competition in Paris last month.

Grammy-award winning jazz group, the Yellowjackets, will perform with the University of Wyoming Jazz Ensemble Thursday night. The Yellowjackets will also conduct workshops with UW musicians.  UW Jazz Ensemble director Scott Turpen says the Yellowjackets’ visit is part of the music department’s Eminent Artist-in-Residence program.

The common story behind the murder of Matthew Shepard is that he was targeted in Laramie’s fireside bar because he was gay and was the victim of a robbery.  Law enforcement authorities say that Shepard was driven to the edge of Laramie and tied to a fence by Russell Henderson and Aaron McKinney. 

He was then pistol whipped and left for dead.  But for years some say there was more to the crime then that and author Steve Jimenez has explored those rumors.  His book called “The Book of Matt.  Hidden Truths about the murder of Matthew Shepard” paints a different narrative.

Willow Belden

If you’ve been out snow shoeing or cross country skiing this winter, you may have noticed bicycle tire marks on the trails. That’s because of a new sport called snow biking. It’s gaining popularity fast, and cyclists and bike shops are thrilled. But some skiers feel the bikes present safety risks. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.

As part of the UW request to the Wyoming legislature, WPM requested $2.5 million in the 2014 legislative session for critical infrastructure upgrades and replacements. WPM operates sites throughout the state.  Many of them are operating on equipment far past its useful time.  The most critical sites serve Laramie/Cheyenne and Rock Springs. 

“Wyoming Public Radio” is a state treasure.  Every Wyomingite should be able to access on ratio the public programming it provides, as well as critical emergency broadcasts,” says Christina Kuzmych, WPM General Manager.

A bluegrass band with Wyoming connections will be holding its breath at the Grammy Awards on Sunday night. That’s because Della Mae’s recording ‘This World Oft Can Be’ is up for Best Bluegrass Album. Wyoming Public Radio’s Micah Schweizer reports.

MICAH SCHWEIZER: Late last year, late at night, the band was on the road in Tennessee when they heard the news. Shelby Means, who plays bass and sings harmony, says the band was packed into a van with their soundman at the wheel.

The Wyoming Main Street Alliance says Laramie easily led the state in the number of downtown renovation projects and public improvement projects last year.

The group says the average number of renovation projects in 2013 in major Wyoming downtowns was about 15.  Laramie had 46.

Main Street works to revitalize cities by preserving their historical characters.  Each year they track new businesses, jobs, and projects that improve downtowns.

An all ages weekly concert series in Laramie started as a training ground for students. Now, Studio WYO brings a steady flow of local and regional bands to the University of Wyoming on Thursday nights… and has become a hub for music lovers.

Tonight's act is Hectic Hobo, a gypsy rock band from Salt Lake City. Sort of like an updated version of old west saloon music. UW Student Miles Griffith booked the band.

Tenors Un Limited

The trio Tenors Un Limited bills itself as ‘the Rat Pack of Opera.’ The group is starting the New Year with just four U.S. concerts before continuing the tour in the U.K., where they’re based. Two of those American engagements are in Wyoming, as Paul Martin explains to Wyoming Public Radio’s Micah Schweizer.

Following the resignation of Bob Sternberg, Dick McGinity has taken over reins at the University of Wyoming as Interim President. 

McGinity was simply a faculty member at UW until Sternberg promoted him to be part of the administration and now he’s running the show.  Among his first duties is getting UW priorities through the legislature.  He tells Bob Beck that includes pay raises.

uwyo.edu

We’re joined now by Mark Jenkins of Laramie. He recently went to a remote area in Asia for a story for National Geographic.  He speaks with Willow Belden. 

The geology museum at the University of Wyoming recently re-opened after a long remodel. One of the features unveiled is a new fossil preparation lab. This lab offers U-W students, museum visitors, and the community a variety of opportunities to learn more about fossil prep. Wyoming Public Radio’s Chelsea Biondolillo has more.

Classic dances like the Jitterbug, the Charleston, and the Lindy Hop are being revived at a community swing dance series in Laramie. Swingin’ Around Town started this summer as a way to rekindle social dance.

It now happens on the first and third Friday of every month at Blossom Yoga in downtown Laramie, and Lindy Hop lessons start in January at the Laramie Recreation Center. Wyoming Public Radio’s Micah Schweizer spoke with Swingin’ Around Town co-founders Kevin Bretting and Charles Fournier.

Seattle Municipal Archives / Wikipedia Creative Commons

On Tuesday night, the city of Laramie and several other groups hosted a forum to brainstorm solutions to the problem of glass recycling, which has recently stopped in Laramie. ARC Regional Services says they lost thousands of dollars a year because they had to ship glass recycling to Wheatland, Colorado.  That’s where Rocky Mountain Bottling Company turns it into beer bottles. 

trib.com

Laramie Senator Phil Nicholas says he’s sad and disappointed to see Bob Sternberg depart from his position as President of the University of Wyoming so quickly. Sternberg resigned on Thursday after less than 5 months on the job. 

trib.com

It’s not often that a president leaves a university as quickly as Bob Sternberg, but it has happened before at UW. Phil Roberts spoke with Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden. He says there are often times that people are just not the right fit for a particular position.

For more on UW President Bob Sternberg’s resignation, click here.

Bob Beck

Lots of people enjoy the calming and relaxing benefits of yoga, but in Laramie a group is trying to use yoga to help those in the drug court program.  And the early returns are good.  Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck has more. 

BOB BECK:  It’s Friday night at Laramie’s Hot Power Yoga.  The lights are down and the room is lit with candles.  Nine people connected with the Albany County Drug Court program are here holding various poses in an effort to relax and focus. 

It’s been a rough week for UW President Bob Sternberg.  He’s been taken to task by several UW faculty on University list serves over his handling of a number of issues, but people have expressed the most concern over the turnover of some U-W administrators. 

Most recently the dismissal of the College of Education Dean and the resignation of the Law School Dean.  Sternberg gives Bob Beck his perspective on the controversy.

Willow Belden

In our occasional “Upstarts” series, we’re going to visit a company called Snowy Range Instruments. It’s based in Laramie, and it makes devices that can identify mystery substances. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.

WILLOW BELDEN: In a large warehouse-like room, Tony Eads sits hunched over a workbench. He’s holding a soldering iron, and working on the control board for a high-tech instrument. At this stage, the device looks kind of like what you might see if you took apart a computer: basically, a green board with a maze of tiny copper-colored components.

Micah Schweizer

Several times a year, Laramie hosts square dances that attract dancers from hundreds of miles around. Part of the draw is the hall, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. Wyoming Public Radio's Micah Schweizer has a postcard from Laramie's Quadra Dangle Square Dance Club.

Pages