St. Louis on the Air | St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis on the Air

Noon-1 p.m. and 10-11 p.m. (repeat) Monday-Friday
  • Local Host Don Marsh

St. Louis on the Air creates a unique space where guests and listeners can share ideas and opinions with respect and honesty. Whether exploring issues and challenges confronting our region, discussing the latest innovations in science and technology, taking a closer look at our history or talking with authors, artists and musicians, St. Louis on the Air brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region.

St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh and producers Mary EdwardsAlex Heuer, and Kelly Moffitt give you the information you need to make informed decisions and stay in touch with our diverse and vibrant St. Louis region.

A view of Elephant Rocks State Park during the fall.
Missouri Division of Tourism | Flickr

It is said Missouri is home to one of the best state park systems in the country. How did it get to be this way? And what hurdles does it face going forward?

“We’ve been in the top four the past few years now, and we’re also considered the number one trail state,” said Steve Nagle, the board president of the Missouri Parks Association, an advocacy group that supports the state parks system. “We’re really proud of that legacy.”

Ken Haller shares his story at The Story Collider podcast event on May 2, 2017.
Sleet Photography | St. Louis Storytelling Festival

On May 2, St. Louis Public Radio hosted The Story Collider, a national podcast and live storytelling group, for an evening of personal stories about science told on stage under the theme of "Eclipse." The event was sponsored by the St. Louis Storytelling Festival.

Ken Haller, SLUCare pediatrician at SSM Cardinal Glennon Childrens Medical Center and professor of pediatrics at Saint Louis University, shared a personal story from his first years as a doctor in New York City during the rise of the AIDS crisis.

Christine Brewer and David Walton in Union Avenue Opera's "Albert Herring."
Union Avenue Opera

Union Avenue Opera’s 23rd season kicks off next week Friday and runs through August. This year, the company is introducing nothing but firsts. Each of its three productions is a premiere for the company.

On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air, contributor Steve Potter sat down with three people associated with this year’s productions to hear about what to expect.

The Illinois State Capitol.
J. Stephen Conn | Flickr

The state of Illinois has been without a budget for the past two years and could enter a third straight year without a spending plan if a budget is not sent to Illinois Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner by Friday.

Kevin Killeen discussed his most recent humorous novel "Most Improved Sophomore" on St. Louis on the Air.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

KMOX radio reporter Kevin Killeen knows a thing or two about growing up Catholic in St. Louis in the 1970s. It’s apparently a subject a lot of you know about is well, as we heard from a plethora of listeners about their experiences in and out of school during that time period.

These reflections were spurred by a conversation with Killeen about his latest humorous novel, “Most Improved Sophomore.”

Willis Ryder Arnold and Nancy Fowler discussed their revamped arts and culture podcast, Cut & Paste.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

On Thursday, St. Louis Public Radio's Cut & Paste podcast relaunched with a redefined focus: the human-centered arts stories of St. Louis. The hosts of the podcast, Nancy Fowler and Willis Ryder Arnold, joined St. Louis on the Air on Thursday to discuss how they've re-conceptualized the podcast. 

Wednesday's Legal Roundtable featured a panel of law experts, William Freivogel, Greg Magarian and Mark Smith.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

A lot of news coming out of the U.S. Supreme Court this week. First, a ruling that allows parts of President Donald Trump’s travel ban to go forward. And then, a ruling on case involving a Missouri church, Trinity Lutheran in Columbia, that sought a state grant to put a soft surface on its preschool playground that was denied funding.

Author Candice Millard's book "Hero of the Empire" looks into Winston Churchill's exploits during the Boer War.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

On Tuesday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh discussed “Hero of the Empire,” a book by New York Times-bestselling author Candice Millard about Winston Churchill’s experiences in early adulthood as a reporter during the Boer War.

Nate Larson's photography and oral history project "Centroid Towns" documents life at towns that were, at one point, designated the mean center of U.S. population.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

“The Centroid” refers to the point of the United States’ mean center of population. Baltimore-based photographer Nate Larson has taken this construction and run with it, documenting life in the “Centroid Towns,” which have been calculated by the U.S. Census Bureau since 1790. Here's how that's done.

Dr. Sheandra Brown and Kristy Jackson are two local educators who recently spoke at The Crooked Room Conference at UMSL, which focused on improving outcomes for African American girls and women in education.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

There’s a growing body of research that shows African-American girls are punished in school at rates much higher than girls of any other race.

Andrea Purnell and Gregory Carr discussed "Tinderbox," Carr's play based on the East St. Louis Race Riots of 1917, on St. Louis on the Air.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

July 2, 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of one of the bloodiest race riots in the 20th century: the East St. Louis Race Riots of 1917

On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air, Gregory Carr, an instructor of speech and theater at Harris-Stowe State University, and actress Andrea Purnell joined the program to discuss “Tinderbox,” his play based on the history of the event. 

Missouri Capitol in Jefferson City, 2016
Ethan Weston | Flickr

On Friday’s “Behind the Headlines," we took a look at a top news story from the week.

This week, host Don Marsh was joined by St. Louis Public Radio reporter Jo Mannies to discuss Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens's interactions with the Missouri legislature and the recent special sessions.

Kathy Favazza (L) and Nika Leoni (R) are the co-founders of Make Music St. Louis, the organization responsible for bringing Make Music Day to St. Louis.
Alicia Lee | St. Louis Public Radio

If you happened to be in the Delmar Loop on Wednesday or in a number of other places in the St. Louis area, it’s likely you heard live music.

Those sounds were part of Make Music Day, an international holiday that’s celebrated in more than 750 cities worldwide including more than 50 in the United States. 

Opera singers Nika Leoni and Kathy Favazza are co-founders of the event in St. Louis.

Painkiller
Tom Walker | Flickr | http://bit.ly/22McgqC

Last year set a record for the number of drug overdose deaths in the St. Louis region, most of them opioid-related. Gun violence has also long been a problem in St. Louis. Although there’s no evidence to prove the rise in the prevalence of both issues is related, the solution to them is interconnected, advocates say.

Logan Ely is the chef behind Square 1 Project, a pop-up restaurant concept.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Sound Bites is produced in partnership with Sauce Magazine, our monthly installment exploring cuisine in the St. Louis area.

Chef Logan Ely has been around the globe and back a few times since growing up in St. Louis. He spent time at Chicago’s North Pond Restaurant after graduating Forest Park Community College’s culinary program and from there went to Hong Kong and New York.

What summer reads should be on our list? You tell us.
meg | Flickr

Well, it’s officially summer now – and with that comes time spent by the pool, on vacation or maybe even a few “sick days” spent at home. With that in mind, we brought in three local book experts to give us suggestions of their top summer reads.

We’re focusing on books for adults this time around but, in a few weeks, we’ll also discuss children’s book recommendations.

You can find links to each book discussed below, but our guest from Left Bank Books made this handy list as well. 

Players on the Arch Rival All Stars roller derby team run drills during practice on Monday, June 12, 2017, ahead of the Sibling Rivalry invitational.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

As of 9 p.m. on a Monday earlier this month,  the temperature had not sunk below 90 degrees all day. Despite the lethargic heat, the St. Louis Skatium, an un-air-conditioned, no-frills skating rink in south city, was bustling with action.

For two hours, the Arch Rival All Stars, 20 of the best women’s flat track roller derby players in St. Louis, have been running drills and scrimmaging.

Nedim Ramic and Anna Crosslin discussed the issues refugees face today in light of World Refugee Day on June 20.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Tuesday marks World Refugee Day, a designation made by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. The number of refugees and displaced persons in the world is higher than it has ever been since World War II, with some 65.5 million people displaced throughout the world right now.

(via Flickr/wild_turkey5300)

Facts and fiction continue to swirl about mosquito-borne illnesses like the Zika and West Nile viruses. On Tuesday’s St. Louis on the Air, we discussed what you need to know about such illnesses and how to prevent them.

Saint Louis University is currently at the forefront of trying to develop a Zika vaccine. Sarah George, a researcher with the Saint Louis University Center for Vaccine Development, joined the program on Tuesday to discuss her research and prevention tips.

Lisa Servon, Ray Boshara and Veta Jeffrey discussed the growing trend of Americans opting out of traditional banking.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Unbanking – you may have heard the term before, but what does it actually mean? On Monday’s St. Louis on the Air, we discussed “The Unbanking of America” with author Lisa Servon, who researches why a growing number of people in the United States are turning to alternatives other than traditional banks.

Stephen Lord, retiring music director at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, joined St. Louis on the Air on Monday.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Stephen Lord has been coming to St. Louis for 37 seasons of Opera Theatre Saint Louis in some sort of role with the company. For the last 25 years, he’s been music director, but after this season closes at the end of this month, he’ll step down from that position.

David Baron, the author of "American Eclipse," discussed the upcoming total solar eclipse that will pass over parts of St. Louis on Aug. 21.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Author David Baron is not kidding when he says he’s been looking forward to the total solar eclipse that will occur on American soil on Aug. 21, 2017, for the past 19 years. In 1998, he saw his first total solar eclipse. He’s now seen five different total solar eclipses around the world … but never one over his homeland of the United States.

FBI and ATF agents enter the the home of James T. Hodgkinson, the man identified as shooting a Republican member of congress, in Belleville, Illinois on June 14, 2017.
Bill Greenblatt | UPI

On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air, we went Behind the Headlines and the headlines this week reached all the way from Alexandria, Virginia, to Belleville, Illinois. We focused this week’s segment on the local connection to the shooting, which was perpetrated by a 66-year-old man from Belleville, James T. Hodgkinson.

June 12 marked the one-year anniversary of the Pulse nightclub massacre in Orlando, the deadliest terror attack on American soil since September 11, 2001. Forty-nine people died in the shooting and 53 people were injured in the attack.

A view inside Olive + Oak, which is located in Webster Groves.
Sauce Magazine

Sound Bites is produced in partnership with Sauce Magazine, our monthly installment exploring cuisine in the St. Louis area.

In this year’s Sauce Magazine Readers Choice Awards, two local dining favorites became clear: Olive + Oak in Webster Groves and Katie’s Pizza & Pasta in Rock Hill.

De Nichols, a local artist and community organizer behind "Sticky Note to Self" and a variety of other community-focused projects, joined St. Louis on the Air on Wednesday.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Can a reflection jotted on a sticky note spark social change? Can it help community activists feel less alone? Those are questions local artist and activist De Andrea Nichols is answering with her project “Sticky Note To Self.”

“From any path you take always get back to happy,” reads one sticky note. “There are lessons in our losses,” reads another. You can see them all on the Facebook page for the project here.

Jeanette Mott Oxford and Leslie Yoffie discussed hunger in the St. Louis reigon with St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh on Wednesday.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

It may be hard to believe, but some 42.2 million Americans go hungry each day. That’s more than one in eight people in the country. That’s according to Michelle Stuffmann, director of outreach and communications for MAZON, a Jewish Response to Hunger, whose exhibit is slated to travel to St. Louis in July.

How can you protect yourself from the spate of spams targeting older Americans?
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

One in three Missourians are over the age of 60. That number is only set to increase in coming years. There’s also been a recent increase in the number of cons targeting older Americans – scammers fooling the group of people out of billions of dollars per year (yes, you read that right), often aided by digital technology.

“We Live Here,” a popular podcast from St. Louis Public Radio exploring race and class in the St. Louis region, is back on Tuesday with the first episode in its third season. The style of the show has changed over the course of its first two seasons, but season three marks the most dramatic shift.

Stephanie Leffler is CEO of OneSpace, which connects workers and employers for short-term contract work. Miriam Cherry is a professor at SLU Law School who studies the gig economy and the rights of worker's and employers.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

The “gig economy” is growing with an estimated 20 to 30 percent of American and European working-age population participating in some kind of independent work.

Defined as “a labor market characterized by the prevalence of short-term contracts or freelance work as opposed to permanent jobs,” we spoke with two local experts about how the gig economy is at play in the St. Louis region on Monday’s St. Louis on the Air.

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