Mary Edwards

Senior Talk Show Producer, St. Louis Symphony Producer

Mary Edwards came to St. Louis Public Radio in 1974, just after finishing her Bachelor of Music degree at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.  She has served the station in a number of capacities over the years, and is currently Senior Producer of  St. Louis Public Radio’s local talk/call-in show, “St. Louis on the Air," and producer of the live Saturday night broadcasts of the St. Louis Symphony.  Mary also teaches an undergraduate class in radio production at Webster University. In her spare time, she enjoys playing the flute, participating in various music activities at her church, and water skiing.

Ways to Connect

(via Flickr/NathanReed)

When it comes to successfully or unsuccessfully governing and managing communities, leadership decisions can make or break a city or region.

St. Louis has been cited as a city “that let greatness slip away over the 20th century.”  That’s the contention of Colin Gordon, Professor of History at the University of Iowa, in his book, Mapping Decline…St. Louis and the Fate of the American City.

(via Flickr/mike matney)

The U.S. Supreme Court, last week, heard arguments on two gay rights cases which may produce landmark rulings. 

The Missouri legislature is considering banning the use of drones by journalists while the University of Missouri Journalism School is teaching students how to use them.

And, Missouri’s contraception exception law is no more – at least for now.

Those and other topics were discussed as part of our monthly legal roundtable.

Our guests:

Actor, director and playwright Ami Dayan returns to St. Louis to perform his adaptation of Orem Neeman’s one-man play Conviction. Dyan grew up in a Kibbutz in Israel, but spent two years in St. Louis in the early 1970s when his father was the Israeli emissary to St. Louis at the JCC.  So it will be a homecoming of sorts when he performs at the New Jewish Theatre on the JCC campus.

Emily Nathan

Belleville, Illinois native Jay Farrar is the leader of the band Son Volt, an alt-country group formed in 1994 after the break-up of Uncle Tupelo.

Earlier this month Farrar, with his band Son Volt, released Honky Tonk (Rounder Records), a more acoustic-based sound which recalls the classic Bakersfield honky tonk music.

The new album also features Farrar’s foray into playing the pedal steel guitar, which he learned while playing with the St. Louis band, Colonel Ford.

file photo

On April 2nd voters in St. Louis City and St. Louis County will go to the polls, to among other things, vote on whether to pass Proposition P – a 3/16th of one-cent sales tax increase which would benefit the Gateway Arch grounds, regional trails and greenways through Great Rivers Greenway, and city and county parks.

Host Don Marsh talked with people on both sides of the issue.  Peter Sortino is the chairman of the pro Proposition P campaign and Jennifer Bird, a Republican Committeewoman in St. Louis County, is opposed to the measure.

(Courtesy Euphrates Institute)

The animosity between the governments of Israel and Iran is significant.

Iranian Ayatollah Ali Khamenei once compared Israel to a cancerous tumor which should be “cut-off.”  President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said Israel would be “eliminated,” and that the country has no roots in the Middle East.

Israel has drawn a line in the sand and is threatening preemptive action to prevent an Iranian nuclear capability.

Two people from their respective countries, however, are engaging in peer-to-peer diplomacy, putting aside  hostility.

Courtesy: St. Louis American

The St. Louis American has a circulation of 70,000 and is the largest weekly in Missouri targeting African American readers.  It reaches 40-45 percent of black households in the St. Louis metropolitan area.

It has received top national honors for journalistic excellence several times and it was named the best African American newspaper in the country in 2006. 

Host Don Marsh spoke with Dr. Donald Suggs, the principal owner, publisher and executive editor of the newspaper for the last three decades.

(via Flickr/Rhubarble)

For many years, it’s been thought that Stonehenge, the ancient monolith in southwestern England, was created by Druids around 460 B.C.  

New research shows that is incorrect.  “Even today, a lot of people think Stonehenge is connected to Druids.  We are very certain from radon carbon dating that it happened before,” said British archaeologist Mike Parker Pearson, Professor at the Institute of Archaeology, University College London and leader of the Stonehenge Riverside Project.

(via Flickr/e-MagineArt.com)

Medication is often a routine treatment for children diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

A recently released report by the Centers for Disease Control shows nearly 9 percent of Missouri’s children are diagnosed with ADHD and that about 80 percent of them receive prescription medication for the behavioral disorder, a rate second only to Mississippi.

(Courtesy: Tim Collins)

Talking about sex is often a difficult conversation for parents to have with their children.

A new one-man play, entitled The Big Talks, performed by solo theater performer Tim Collins seeks to demonstrate effective ways in which parents can communicate with their children about sexual health and teen pregnancy.

Used With Permission (via Flickr / WWComicCon)

The St. Louis Comic Con takes place in Downtown St. Louis this weekend.

The event brings some of the biggest names in science fiction, comics and more. 

Host Steve Potter talked with actor, fitness trainer/consultant and retired professional bodybuilder Lou Ferrigno.  He gained fame as a young world-class bodybuilder, at one point becoming Mr. Universe. 

He also played the Incredible Hulk in the CBS TV series.

Ferrigno was joined by Jerry Milani, a representative of Wizard World, which bills itself as the place where pop culture comes to life.

(Courtesy: St. Louis Classical Guitar Society)

Spanish guitarist Rafael Aguirre is not yet 30, but has already won first place honors in 12 of the world’s most prestigious competitions.  He has also performed in many of the greatest concert halls around the world, including New York City’s famed Carnegie Hall, where he has performed twice. 

Phil Martin

A Chorus Line opened on Broadway in 1975 to critical acclaim, winning nine Tony Awards.  It became the longest running Broadway production, with more than 6,000 performances, until surpassed by Cats.

A touring revival of the musical is in St. Louis, currently at the Peabody Opera House.

(Saint Louis Athletics)

Jason Kertz is a 2009 graduate of Saint Louis University.  He is now a middle school teacher as well as baseball and basketball coach at Chaminade College Prep.

A song he posted earlier this week on YouTube already has several thousand views.  The song, “Started from the Bottom (Bills on Top),” is a cover of singer Mike Posner’s cover of rapper Drake’s song, “Started from the Bottom.”

Sarah Fishbein

At one time or other, almost every young person has had a desire to run off and join the circus.  But in Clayton native Duncan Wall’s case, it wasn’t until he was a junior in college and was “blown away” by the contemporary circus he attended in Paris, that he got the circus bug. 

Wall's background included sports and theater and he was attracted by the combination of the two.

(Missouri History Museum)

St. Louis has a long had a special relationship with the trolley.  It’s a relationship immortalized by actor and singer Judy Garland in the film Meet Me In St. Louis

Currently, there are independent efforts in St. Louis to revive the presence of a trolley, or as some proponents say, streetcar. 

(via NPR)

NPR's senior social media strategist Andy Carvin was our sole guest today on "St. Louis on the Air." 

Carvin touched on his beginnings, his role as a "information DJ" and how he pieces together truth in real time.

How does he describe his job?

Carvin said one of the best ways he can think of to describe what he does is a "journalistic test pilot."

"I use the word storytelling because...not everything I do could be considered journalism."

"Someone once referred to what I do as 'information DJ-ing.'"

Last summer’s drought in the United States, and particularly here in the Midwest, would lead one to ask if there is enough water to meet the world’s needs.  According to Dr. Roberto Lenton, Professor of Biological Systems Engineering and Executive Director of the Robert B. Daugherty Water for Food Institute at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln, the answer is “yes.”

The Streckfus family’s Admiral riverboat served as a mecca for social gatherings for generations of St. Louisans.  Gracing the St. Louis riverfront from 1940 until 1978 with its distinctive art deco style, the boat took daily and nightly excursions on the Mississippi.  On its five decks, patrons could partake in a variety of entertainment including ballroom dancing, a number of dining choices, arcade games, rock bands for teens, glamorous powder rooms and more.  Its air-conditioned ballroom was one of the first in the area.

Joseph Cultice

The Gateway Men’s Chorus came up with the name “Bad Boys” before B -52’s frontman Fred Schneider was onboard for this weekend’s performances.

According to Al Fischer, artistic director of GMC, Bad Boys is about “guys with attitude, guys with something to say, who don’t care what people think about them.”

The Gateway Men's Chorus' mission is to affirm and promote gay culture and acceptance through excellence in musical performance and education.

Lance Tilford Photography

Life coach Jill Farmer quit her career as a television consumer reporter and discovered that although she no longer had a fulltime job, she was still busy with little productivity to show for it.  She found herself swinging from the “hamster wheel” mode of moving for the sake of moving but not seeming to get anything done, to the overwhelming state of paralysis where she wasn’t sure where to start.

Evan C. Parker / Via Flickr

The St. Louis Beacon’s Washington Correspondent Rob Koenig was Don Marsh’s guest on “St.

Anna Saphphire via Flickr

The Violence Against Women Act was originally passed by Congress in 1994, spearheaded by then Senator Joe Biden.  But when the act expired in 2011, it took more than a year of wrangling before Congress could come to terms on its reauthorization.  When President Obama signed the reauthorization of the act on March 7, several additional groups of women were covered.  Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered persons, Native American women on tribal land and immigrants are now protected.

U.S. VETS

Making the transition from the military to civilian life can be difficult. 

Many veterans come out of the military with combat trauma, a condition which must be dealt with before they can move on.  And many don’t admit their condition for fear their discharge will be delayed or they won’t be able to get jobs needing a security clearance or jobs in law enforcement. 

Only a fraction of those with combat trauma register with a VA hospital.

(Courtesy: Saint Louis Urban Debate League)

Debate is an activity in which thousands of high school and college students participate throughout the country.

The academic activity takes many forms and styles though ‘policy debate’ is one of the most common.

Wikipedia

When Mary Beth Tinker was a middle school student in Iowa, she never dreamed that she would one day see her name attached to a Supreme Court decision in her college text book.  But that’s exactly what happened.

Florian Schulz

Florian Schulz has two passions.  He is an award-winning wildlife photographer, but is equally dedicated to preserving the habitat of wildlife. 

Schulz’s passions led him to the Arctic where he spent 18 months in search of breathtaking images documenting life in every season.  The result is the book “To the Arctic” which is the companion to the IMAX film of the same name.

It has been a thrilling week for Steven Jarvi.  In the same week, he has fulfilled two lifelong dreams.  He has been appointed to a job he has dreamed of his whole life and is conducting an opera he has always dreamed of conducting.

The job is Resident Conductor of the St. Louis Symphony and the opera is Puccini’s “Tosca” which Jarvi conducts with Winter Opera Saint Louis in performances March 8 and 10 at Chaminade.

Aaron Bunse

A successful urban neighborhood is made up of several components, some of which are schools, restaurants and residential housing.

During the 1970s, when business owner Joe Edwards opened Blueberry Hill in The Loop, University City experienced a certain measure of renewal.  The well-known restaurant remains an anchor for that stretch of Delmar Boulevard.

Current examples of urban renewal through new restaurants include Cherokee Street and the Carondelet neighborhood in South City.

Ari Shapiro at microphone
Stephen Voss for NPR

Ari Shapiro is a White House correspondent for NPR.

His stories about ongoing political negotiations in Washington, D.C. are familiar to public radio listeners as is his recent guest hosting of Talk of the Nation.

Shapiro, a graduate of Yale University, began his journalism career in 2001 in the office of NPR Legal Affairs Correspondent Nina Totenberg.  He would go on to cover the Justice Department and serve reporting stints in Atlanta, Miami and Boston.  The award-winning journalist was the first NPR reporter to be promoted to correspondent before age thirty.

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