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There Was No 'Imaginary Fence' Keeping Coronavirus Out Of This Rural Kansas County

WALLACE, Kansas – Wallace County is at the western edge of Kansas, on the border with Colorado. It’s the second-least populated county in the state, and for the first half of 2020, life here maintained a sense of normalcy while the rest of world dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic. Sure, businesses closed in March and stay-at-home orders went into effect, just like the rest of the state. But by summer, many in Wallace County, population about 1,500 , felt it unnecessary to take more severe...

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The Wichita Symphony Orchestra will host performances in city parks this fall, beginning Saturday.

Smaller ensembles comprised of Wichita Symphony musicians will perform on Saturday and Oct. 3 for its Playing Across the Parks series. It’s a partnership with the Wichita Park and Recreation department.

There will be six free performances each day at parks across the city.

People attending must follow COVID-19 guidelines, including wearing masks and observing 6-feet of social distancing.

Fletcher Powell / KMUW

Ten nonprofits will each receive a $10,000 grant from the Evergy Community Response Fund.

The grant will go toward closing gaps in services created by COVID-19 and promoting solutions to racial injustice.

The fund was created to award nonprofits serving zip codes 67208, 67214 and 67219, which cover parts of north and northeast Wichita. The Evergy Community Advisory Board, consisting of people from the area, looked over applications and awarded the grants.

The nonprofits receiving $10,000 each are:

Holly Mulcahy

Six months in a pandemic has meant six months of virtual events.

That’s also led to a lot of “Zoom fatigue.”

While in-person events are slowly returning, large gatherings like galas and festivals are still regulated to online-only. Here are four tips from Wichita organizers about how to draw attention in the saturated virtual world:

Public speaking skills

File photo

Even as they offered condolences to the family of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Missouri and Kansas Republicans vowed over the weekend to push forward on filling the high court vacancy.

Phillips County Retirement Center got a coronavirus testing machine this month from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

But it will run out of the sample-collecting kits that came with the device on Monday, just one week after turning it on.

Twenty miles away, the county’s other nursing home is still waiting for its machine.

“It’s been a really big struggle just to even try to find out who knows where it is,” said Teresa McComb, who runs Logan Manor Community Health Services.

Carla Eckels / KMUW

Working from home and tired of looking at Zoom screens all day? Us too. After several months in quarantine, there's got to be a way to spice things up. Today on The Range, we rundown some tips on how to improve your virtual meeting and livestream events.

Bloomsberries, flickr Creative Commons

The Kansas Supreme Court seemed worried Wednesday about the proper roles of the Legislature and courts as it wrestled with whether a state statute that prohibits lawsuits based on "wrongful birth" claims is constitutional.

Nadya Faulx / KMUW

The 2020 census count is set to end Sept 30, a month earlier than originally planned. That’s left census workers and advocates hurrying to get as many households to respond as possible – especially in communities that have historically been undercounted.

ENGLEWOOD, Kansas — Lesser prairie chickens don’t really bother Mike McCarty. He likes them just fine, but doesn’t think people understand how hard it is to balance wildlife conservation and being a rancher and farmer in southwest Kansas.

“Yes, we need to protect our wildlife and everything,” he says, “but we also need to protect our people, our agriculture.”

Wikimedia Commons

Sedgwick County plans to set up a “mega voting site” at Intrust Bank Arena for early voting in the November general election.


Commentary & Podcasts

High Profile Film Festivals Are More Accessible, But Move Quickly If You Want To 'Attend'

One of the very few things that’s actually been pretty good about our current state is that the ability to watch new movies has become more democratic. Of course, I’m of the opinion that all movies are better on a big screen, so I’m definitely not saying what we’ve got right now is better, but because high profile film festivals have had to get creative, some of them have made their movies accessible to people everywhere.

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Monday, September 21

Global Village marks International Day of Peace, a day set aside by the United Nations since 1982 in support of world peace. The program highlights topical tunes from a variety of artists from around the world, including Third World, Vieux Farka Toure, Sameer Gupta, the Holmes Brothers, Edwin Starr, and more.

Tuesday, September 22

Global Village welcomes in the first day of Fall with songs of the season from a wide array of artists and styles of music. We’ll hear selections from Astor Piazzolla, Bob Dorough, Ralph Towner (with and without the group Oregon), the Zombies, Ahmad Jamal, and more.

Wednesday, September 23

This time, Global Village devotes a show to female singers of Mali. The country is distinct and somewhat unusual for the prominent role of female singers. We’ll hear some of the legends – including Oumou Sangare, Caoumba Sidibe and Kandia Kouyate, along with such raising stars as Rokia Traore and Fatoumata Diawara; plus Trio da Kali, featuring the powerful voice of Hawa Diabate, and the collaborative project, Les Amazones d’Afrique, that featured several female Malian singers.

Thursday, September 24

Global Village marks the birthday of “Mr. Bongo” Jack Costanzo with his Latin-inspired work from early in his career and in his later comeback. The September Piano Month feature continues with music from Brazilian pianist, composer, educator and next Global Village at the Savannah Music Festival artist Jovino Santos Neto and South African pianist Bheki Mseleku. We’ll hear the latest from French Afrobeat band Les Freres Smith and Tucson Latin Alt band Orkesta Mendoza. And we go back for music from Bay area Latin rock band Malo, reggae greats Toots & the Maytals, and a newly reissued ‘80s set from Ghanian band Edikanfo.

Friday, September 25

Global Village wraps up a month-long series of shows previewing virtual performances presented by world music festivals across the US and Canada as part of Global Music Month – this time with artists from fests in New York, Bloomington, Albuquerque and more. There’s also more music for the September Piano Month feature, including a classic track from Eddie Palmieri, and some classic Colombian cumbia from the ‘King of Cumbia’ Lisandro Meza.

Monday, September 21

Night Train marks birthdays of local guitar great and fusion pioneer Jerry Hahn (as a leader and with Grant Geissman and King & Moore), bassist Slam Stewart, and pianist Henry Butler (also featured in a solo concert special from the Savannah Music Festival in hour two of the show). We’ll also hear the latest from guitarist Steve Cardenas, singer Lauren Henderson, and the BK Trio.

Tuesday, September 22

Night Train marks the arrival of autumn with a program devoted to both classic and contemporary songs about fall. Among the artists featured– Cannonball Adderley, Nat Adderley, John Coltrane with Johnny Hartman, Bob Dorough, the Jacques Loussier Trio, the David Murray Quartet, Mose Allison, Patricia Barber, Vanessa Rubin, and more.

Wednesday, September 23

Night Train marks the 90th birthday of the legendary Ray Charles with some of his more jazz-oriented work and several jazz tribute albums in hour one of the show, followed by a special in hour two focusing on his ABC years from the ‘60s through the early ‘70s when Charles was solidifying his distinctive style while at the same time racking up nearly a dozen Number One hits. It is also the birthday of  jazz legend John Coltrane, saxophone and flute player and Basis band member Frank Foster, pianist Les McCann, and singer Irene Reid.

Thursday, September 24

Night Train continues the September Piano Month feature with the latest releases from Chick Corea, Billy Childs, Harold Lopez-Nussa, Ricardo Bacelar, Monkia Herzig, and Joey Alexander. We’ll also mark birthdays of trombonist and Crusaders’ member Wayne Henderson, vibes player Jay Hoggard, and “Mr. Bongo” Jack Costanza. And there’s new music from percussionist Ray Mantilla, drummer Steve Fidyk, and singer Diane Schuur.

Friday, September 25 and Sunday, September 27

Crossroads wraps up the September Piano Month feature with a special show devoted to the music of Pintop Perkins, the pianist so popular the Blues Music Awards renamed their piano award for him because he had won it so many times.

Perkins is best known for his work with Muddy Waters and then the Legendary Blues Band, made up of Waters former band members. A special in hour two will focus on that aspect of his career, while in the first hour we’ll hear Perkins featured on later albums he did under his own name and as a special guest with a wide array of artists including Koko Taylor, Earl Hooker, James Cotton, Ronnie Earl, and one of Muddy’s sons, Big Bill Morganfield.

It’s classic blues from one of the great piano masters of the style and a fitting conclusion to the Piano Month feature.

Courtesy Chrissie Dieu

Empire Of The Blind is the latest release from legendary Bay Area band Heathen. The LP builds upon the band’s classic sound, with doses of progressive metal influence finding their way into the mix while songs such as “A Fine Red Mist” and the titular piece demonstrate that Heathen has lost none of its footing in the world of thrash metal since its debut in the 1980s. While smoldering riffs and complicated rhythm structures abound, the affair proves varied with material such as “Shrine Of Apathy” and “Sun In My Hand” allowing for more contemporary influences.

Sunday, September 20

Hear a new live recording, Weekend In London,  from legendary jazz guitarist George Benson this Sunday on Soulsations. His music career spans six decades and he’s still bringing down the house. We’ll also hear new big band gospel from Donnie McClurkin, and another installment of DoubleTake. This week, Wichita’s Lu Stephens shares her preference between two versions of one of her favorite songs, “On Broadway” by The Drifters and George Benson. 

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