Open Spaces

Open Spaces
3:27 pm
Fri October 5, 2012

Northern Arapaho tribal entities work to preserve their language in the face of extinction

Arapaho Preschool
Rebecca Martinez

HOST: The number of Northern Arapaho tribe members who speak their native language is dwindling. Tribal entities have been working for decades trying to preserve the language. Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez reports that they’ve been having mixed success.

(Sound: kids speaking Arapaho)

REBECCA MARTINEZ: Tribal elder Alvena Oldman is the director of an Arapaho language immersion preschool in Ethete.

OLDMAN: Hinono’ Eitiino’ Oowu’. Arapaho Language Lodge.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:20 pm
Fri October 5, 2012

Residents near Douglas fear becoming ‘another Pinedale or Pavillion’

Flares like this one at a new oil well near Douglas are raising concerns amongst area residents.
Willow Belden

INTRO: This spring, an oil rig blew out near Douglas. Natural gas spewed into the air, and residents from a nearby neighborhood were evacuated for several days. Since the blowout, Chesapeake Energy has drilled several new wells around that same neighborhood, and residents have new concerns. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.

Read more
Open Spaces
4:05 pm
Fri September 28, 2012

Documents Show Artwork Removed Early Due to Pressure

A sculpture, called Carbon Sink, installed on the University of Wyoming campus, has generated a lot of controversy in the past couple of years. It was a pin wheel of charred logs that sought to draw a connection between coal, global warming, and increased beetle kill. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports that this supposedly anti-carbon message certainly got the attention of law makers, donors, and those in industry.
 

IRINA ZHOROV: The piece was installed in 2011 and was removed in May of 2012, a year earlier than expected.

Read more
Open Spaces
4:02 pm
Fri September 28, 2012

Federal official discusses bark beetles and forest fires

Bark Beetles and forest fires continue to grab the attention of Wyomingites.  In fact many believe that climate change is behind both problems.  Butch Blazer is the Deputy Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment for the US Department of Agriculture.  We sat down with him as he visited with regional foresters in Cheyenne last week.  Blazer says Beetle kill remains a serious problem in the Rocky Mountain West

Read more
Open Spaces
3:59 pm
Fri September 28, 2012

Global warming impacts the elderly

When you think of climate change, you might think of forest fires and heat waves, you might not think of respiratory disease, cardiac arrest, or viruses. As former Open Spaces Co-Host and the current health reporter for Rhode Island Public Radio Kristin Espeland Gourlay discovers, doctors and scientists are beginning to focus attention on the most vulnerable to these ailments: the elderly.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:56 pm
Fri September 28, 2012

A new teacher assessment could help UW Education students improve

University of Wyoming College of Education students will now be part of a Comprehensive Teacher Performance Assessment that will determine the student teachers performance in a variety of skills.   UW was among the institutions that helped develop the assessment that is called edTPA.  Some states already require teachers to pass an assessment like this to get licensed, that is not the case in Wyoming.  But the College of Education will require the Assessment to help develop better teachers.  Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck reports.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:49 pm
Fri September 28, 2012

Sinclair fire the result of failure to train workers and other workplace violations, OSHA finds

The Sinclair Refinery near Rawlins has had four fires or explosions since May, and Wyoming’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, has been investigating what went wrong. OSHA has completed its investigation into one of the incidents. It was a fire on May 25, which injured two workers. Wyoming OSHA Administrator John Ysebaert joins us to talk about what they found. He says one of the main problems is that Sinclair wasn’t properly training its workers.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:46 pm
Fri September 28, 2012

A glimpse into the Cheyenne Concert Association’s upcoming season

The Cheyenne Concert Association started in 1935 as a way to bring a variety of music to community.  Funding for the association comes from the Wyoming Arts Council and National Endowment for the Arts and other organizations.  Mary Cox with the Concert Association tells us that their new season begins October 16th at the Cheyenne School Administration building with the group New Odyssey.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:36 pm
Fri September 28, 2012

Former Rep. Jorgensen pushes for Medicaid expansion

As you may have heard, Governor Matt Mead is struggling with whether to recommend that the state expand Medicaid offerings.  It would provide federal insurance to more people in the state and supporters say it would save the state health care dollars in the long run.  But the Governor says it could cost the state millions of dollars in up-front costs.  Former State Representative Pete Jorgensen, a Democrat from Jackson, says the long term benefits of an expansion make it worth it.  Jorgensen was a long time member of the legislature’s Joint Appropriations Committee and is pushing state hea

Read more
Open Spaces
3:31 pm
Fri September 28, 2012

After slow start, ‘green’ building begins to take root in Wyoming

Davey Jackson Elementary in Jackson achieved LEED certification.

Over the past few years, a growing number of people in Wyoming have been constructing buildings with an eye to making them more energy efficient. But Wyoming still lags behind the rest of the country when it comes to “green” building. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.

Read more
Open Spaces
4:27 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Gov. Mead considers expanding Medicaid

Governor Matt Mead is confronted with the issue of whether or not the state should expand Medicaid services to serve more residents.  It’s a proposal that was included in the Affordable Care Act, but this summer the US Supreme Court ruled that states should be allowed to make this decision.  The argument for doing it is that it would help bring down long term costs of health care, because those who cannot get or afford insurance would be covered under Medicaid.  That should reduce cost shifting.   But there is an expense to the state and a recent study commissioned for the Department of Hea

Read more
Open Spaces
4:24 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Volunteers make EMS possible in rural Wyoming, but numbers are dwindling

An ambulance staffed a team of experienced first-responders can make a world of difference in an emergency. This is especially true in rural Wyoming, where the hospital can be an hour away or more. What many people don’t realize is that most of Wyoming’s Emergency Medical Services – or EMS – workers are volunteers, and their numbers are dwindling. Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez filed this report.

Read more
Open Spaces
4:18 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Wyoming State Parks Celebrate 75 Years

This is the 75th year of State Parks in Wyoming.   Dominic Bravo oversees State Parks, Historic Sites and Trails.   He tells Bob Beck that state parks have an interesting history.

Read more
Open Spaces
4:17 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Symphony: Michael Griffith previews the season

The University of Wyoming Symphony opens its season next week.  Director Michael Griffith joins Bob Beck.

Read more
Open Spaces
4:14 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Beetle killed trees are bad for wildlife

More than a million acres of forest in Wyoming and Colorado by the beetle kill epidemic. That means lots of dry fuel for forest fires. But it also might have an impact on wildlife. So the Wyoming Game and Fish Department is conducting a study to figure out how beetle kill is affecting elk, and elk hunters. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden spoke with wildlife biologist Tony Mong, who’s heading the study. He says the worry is that dead trees could be restricting access to certain parts of the forests.

Read more
Open Spaces
4:12 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Cheyenne Police Dept. seeks to keep the homeless out of jail

The Cheyenne Police Department has launched an initiative that’s meant to help the homeless get access to shelter and other services, and keep them out of jail. The cops and the one shelter in town are optimistic about the program. But various advocacy groups have major concerns. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.

Read more
Open Spaces
4:08 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Laramie sets stage to attract tech industry

The City of Laramie has not been famous for its economic development success.  Laramie has seen a growth in technology jobs, but didn’t have the infrastructure to attract at least narrowly two large mega data centers.  In an effort to change that city leaders are going all out to purchase property and develop what will initially be a 160 acre technology park.  Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck reports that officials are hoping for a big splash.

Read more
Open Spaces
4:02 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Cowboy Joe IV will pass along the reigns this football season

Cowboy Joe IV makes his way off the field with his handlers during University of Wyoming's first home football game of the 2012 season. He’s retiring this season, and will be replaced by Cowboy Joe V.
Irina Zhorov

With the start of football season, comes the start of Cowboy Joe’s work season. Cowboy Joe, if you don’t know, is one of two University of Wyoming mascots. He’s a pony with a lot of attitude who arguably has more admirers than the football players themselves. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports that the current mascot is actually Cowboy Joe four, and he’s passing the reigns to Cowboy Joe five.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:56 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Poem: Kristen Gunther, “Belay”

Laramie poet Kristen Gunther reads her poem, “Belay”.

Open Spaces, Wyoming Public Media
4:12 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

August 31st, 2012

The creeks that Orville Johnson’s cows would normally drink from are dry this year.
Willow Belden

Drought, hay shortage mean tough economic times for Wyoming ag industry
The U.S. Department of Agriculture says this year’s hay crop will be the worst in decades, because of the drought. Hay is already in short supply, and prices have spiked. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports that the hay shortage is forcing ranchers to make tough choices and could have a lingering economic impact on the state’s ag industry.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:57 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

Drought, hay shortage mean tough economic times for Wyoming ag industry

The creeks that Orville Johnson’s cows would normally drink from are dry this year.
Willow Belden

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says this year’s hay crop will be the worst in decades, because of the drought. Hay is already in short supply, and prices have spiked. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports that the hay shortage is forcing ranchers to make tough choices and could have a lingering economic impact on the state’s ag industry.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:53 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

DKRW secures contract for coal-to-gas plant

DKRW plans to build a coal-to-gas plant in Medicine Bow.
Bob Beck

Earlier this year we told you about an effort to turn coal into gas in Medicine Bow.  Today DKRW Advanced Fuels has announced that it has secured a contract to its Medicine Bow project with the Sinopec  Engineering Group in based out of China.   Bob Kelly is Executive Chairman and co-founder of DKRW, and he tells Bob Beck that getting an actual bid on the facility puts wheels in motion.  

Read more
Open Spaces
3:51 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

Author discusses new book about epic Teton accident

Willow Belden talks with author Jennifer Woodlief. She recently published a new book about a particularly disastrous climbing accident in the Tetons. The book is called “A Bolt from the Blue,” and it describes the accident … and the ensuing rescue operation.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:47 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

Cowgirls Volleyball team has high hopes

UW Cowgirls pause during a match
Bob Beck

The University of Wyoming Cowgirls Volleyball team believes that this could be their year.  18 years after their last NCAA tournament appearance and coming off two strong seasons, the Wyoming squad believes it will take a big step forward this year.  Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck has more.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:45 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

Partners In Health co-founder discusses meeting healthcare challenges in the third world before trip

Paul Farmer and Ophelia Dahl, who founded the group Partners in Health, will be speaking in Jackson on September 6th. Partners in Health is a nonprofit that provides healthcare to impoverished people around the world. They started in Haiti in 1987 and now work in 10 different countries. Ophelia Dahl joins us now to talk about their work. She tells Willow Belden, the basic approach is to partner with local governments to accomplish things.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:41 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

Gender wage gap persists in Wyoming

The gender wage gap in Wyoming is the largest in the nation. And that’s not news, either…it’s been this way for years. Groups around the state are working to fix it through policy, training programs, and education, but Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports that it could be the state’s industries that keep the gap firmly in place.

Read more
Open Spaces
3:37 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

AFL-CIO discussing worker safety in Wyoming

It’s Labor Day weekend, which means there will be a lot of discussion surrounding workers in the state.  Kim Floyd is the Executive Secretary of the Labor Organization the AFL-CIO.  He tells Bob Beck it’s an interesting time for many workers

Read more
Open Spaces
3:31 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

Carp are thriving, unpopular in Wyoming waterways; can be composted

Janet “Ogre” Chen stalks common carp with a bow and arrow in Wheatland Reservoir #3.
Rebecca Martinez

Wyoming fisheries no longer stock state waterways with carp, but the species is still alive and well throughout the state. Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez filed this end-of-summer postcard about her first experience with the common carp… and with bow-fishing.

(Arrow shot into water)

REBECCA MARTINEZ: For the unskilled archer, shooting a carp – even a massive one – with a bow and arrow is no easy task. I learned that first-hand this summer during an afternoon of bow-fishing at Wheatland Reservoir Number Three.

(Arrow shot into water)

MARTINEZ: Nuts!

Read more

Pages