Features

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About 40% of Wyomingites have a library card, which makes many resources available while staying at home. Curbside pickup, increased access to audiobooks, and e-readers eliminate the need to go inside a library and pick up a book. But librarians across the state are still looking for better ways to help communities access all their services.

Grady Kirkpatrick talks with Wyoming musician Bob LeFevre about the release of the new album Bob LeFevre and the Already Gone.

Camille T. Dungy

The University of Wyoming Libraries hosted award-winning poet and writer, Camille T. Dungy, for a virtual reading of her work on October 24, 2020. Dungy was born in Denver and has written and edited publications that often explore the ties between race and the environment.

Wyoming Public Radio's Naina Rao spoke with her about how she got started with poetry, her reflections on her journey, and what she thinks about the state of society today.

Inland Isle

Grady Kirkpatrick recently spoke with Jackson, Wyoming based indie folk rock band Inland Isle about their new song "Celestine" from their forthcoming album, Time Has Changed Us.

Graphic by Michael Patti, Texas Observer

This article was reported in collaboration with The Texas Observer and created in partnership with the Economic Hardship Reporting Project.

It's a modest museum on the edge of a modest town. The Lander Pioneer Museum is dimly lit, a nod to its log cabin beginnings, and its mismatched display cases house everything from antique saddles to applesauce mills-artifacts of early settlers in what is now Lander, Wyoming. In the main gallery, a placard announces the institution's major show, "Tribal Warrior Art." The exhibition, which debuted in fall of 2018, contains about 100 ledger art drawings- narrative illustrations created by Indigenous artists from the Plains on discarded account books, mostly during the late 19th century.

Erin Jones


The award-winning Wyoming Public Media podcast HumaNature enters its sixth season this coming week. The podcast host and senior producer Erin Jones joined Bob Beck to discuss the podcast, the upcoming season and how HumaNature came about.

Mark Elbroch

Mountain lions are one of the great conservation success stories. Hunting once whittled their numbers down to a few thousand. But when they were re-classified as a game instead of vermin, they made a big comeback. But it's also led to more conflicts with humans.

A new book called the Cougar Conundrum: Sharing the World with a Successful Predator offers ideas for how to live with these big predators and how to better manage them. Wyoming Public Radio's Melodie Edwards chatted with author Mark Elbroch, the Director of Panthera's Puma project.

University of Wyoming College of Law


The Defender Aid Clinic at the University of Wyoming's College of Law is behind a new podcast that dives into the racial disparities in the United States criminal justice system.

Wyoming Public Radio's Maggie Mullen spoke with Law professor Lauren McLane and student Nathan Yanchek who says the podcast grew out of the outrage he and students in the clinic felt over police killings of African American men.

Kids Ask WhY

A brand new podcast, Kids Ask WhY, will be available showcasing issues Wyoming kids are interested in. The podcast, which debuts on Tuesday, October 6, was developed by the Buffalo Bill Center of the West and Wyoming Public Media. Bob Beck sat down with the producer Kamila Kudelska.

John Blair

A Wyoming saddlemaker will represent the state at the Made in America product showcase at the White House on Monday, October 5.

WYO Film Festival

As statewide public health orders aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus are being lifted over time, more public events are resuming. Many film festivals around the world have had to cancel or change their formats to limit risks. But for the WYO Film Festival in Sheridan, the shows will go on in-person, with some modifications. Wyoming Public Radio's Catherine Wheeler spoke with the festival's director Justin Stroup.

Shirley Ann Higuchi

Nestled in between Cody and Powell in northwest Wyoming, the Heart Mountain Interpretive Center tells the story of over 10,000 Japanese-Americans who were held in the internment camp against their will during World War II. It turns out, the museum wouldn't exist if it weren't for the formerly incarcerated and their children's' dedication.

Chair of the Heart Mountain Wyoming Foundation Shirley Ann Higuchi just released her new book Setsuko's Secret, which tells these stories. To start, Wyoming Public Radio's Kamila Kudelska asked Higuchi how she learned about her parents' time at Heart Mountain.

University of Wyoming

The coronavirus pandemic has been particularly disruptive for musicians. Some solo performers and small ensembles have figured out creative ways to keep performing, but for symphony orchestras, which can have upwards of 80 players on stage, the problem of safe performances is especially complex. As he explained to Wyoming Public Radio's Micah Schweizer, figuring out a way forward has been occupying University of Wyoming Symphony Orchestra conductor Michael Griffith's time. The Symphony has its first fall concert scheduled for October 1.

Shirley Ann Higuchi

A new book focuses on the importance of having a memorial at Heart Mountain, where Japanese-Americans were imprisoned during World War II. 

Shirley Ann Higuchi is the daughter of former incarcerees at Heart Mountain. In her new book, Setsuko’s Secret, Higuchi tells the story of her parents and many others whose lives were touched by the Japanese-American concentration camp. 

Tommy Clark via Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Wyoming Public Media's podcast The Modern West has been gearing up for a new season. They're doing something quite different this time around. Instead of a lot of separate stories, they're going to tell one big story over the course of eleven episodes. Bob Beck sat down with the podcast's host Melodie Edwards to hear what's coming down the pipe.

If this was a normal year, right now, thousands of people would be flocking to the middle of the northern Nevada desert to watch “The Man” burn. But it’s not a normal year, and this year’s Burning Man counterculture outdoor festival has been canceled along with many, many live events across the region. That’s taking its toll on the arts, the community and the economy. 

Brinton Museum

The Brinton Museum sits on the historic Circle A Ranch at the base of the Bighorn Mountains. Named after the ranch owner, Bradford Brinton, the museum prides itself on an extensive collection of Western and American Indian art. Recently, the magazine True West announced it as the top western art museum of 2020. Ken Schuster, the Brinton's director and chief curator, spoke with Catherine Wheeler about what the honor means for the museum. 

Tate McKinney

In his teens, Tate McKinney started coming to terms with his sexual orientation and gender identity. Like many LGBTQ kids in small towns, that led to hard conversations with his family, but then he found out he was related to Aaron McKinney, one of Matthew Shepard's murderers.

Wyoming Public Radio's Melodie Edwards sat down with Tate to hear his uniquely Wyoming story. Tate came forward to share his story after hearing the episode "The Small Town Drag Queen" on The Modern West podcast about the hardship of growing up LGBTQ in the rural West.

Jackson Hole Center for the Arts

The Jackson Hole Center for the Arts has announced a new executive director. A native of Buffalo, Wyo., Marty Camino joined the Center in 2018 as events services director and has served as chief operations officer over the past year.

He spoke with Wyoming Public Radio's Micah Schweizer about stepping into the executive director role when much of the organization's programming has been rearranged by the pandemic.

facebook.com/DuaneBettsBand

Grady Kirkpatrick talked with guitarist, singer and songwriter Duane Betts of the Allman Betts Band about the new album Bless Your Heart, playing concerts again, riding horses and recently moving to the Jackson Hole area.

Grand Teton Music Festival

The Grand Teton Music Festival has picked its new executive director. Emma Kail will lead the organization, which holds a world class orchestra during the summer months and offers other classical music events year round. Kail has a background in music performance and as an administrative leader in classical music organizations across the U.S. Wyoming Public Radio's Kamila Kudelska spoke with her about her vision and hopes for the festival.

Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness Foundation

On Wednesday, August 12, a virtual reading will feature authors of the new book, Voices of Yellowstone's Capstone: A Narrative Atlas of the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness

The book includes stories of the wilderness area just north of Yellowstone National Park. It compiles stories from 30 authors and as many artists. 

Concerts and music festivals around the Mountain West have been canceled due to COVID-19, but not all of them.



Originally from California, author Leslie Patten fell in love with Wyoming almost fifteen years ago and eventually made it her permanent home. The naturalist moved to a rustic cabin near Cody and became fascinated with the wildlife she saw right outside her door. Leslie Patten discusses writing, dogs, mountain lions, and moving from the most populated state to the least.

Her latest book Koda and the Wolves: Tales of a Red Dog is out now.

Regal House Publishing

Even though there's a pandemic happening, life must go on—and that includes publishing books. After being delayed from a June publication, a new novel from a Wyoming author has just been published.

Deborah Lopez

Limitations on in-person gatherings because of the pandemic has led to theatres closing-or rethinking how the show can go on.

Some theatres have, for the time being, moved productions from the stage to the internet. That's the case for Laramie-based Relative Theatrics, and the transition has led the company to hire a Director of Virtual Events. Noelia Berkes spoke with Wyoming Public Radio's Micah Schweizer about her new role and how theatre can benefit from a challenging time.

Jeffrey Denis

Many places around the world have towns with predominantly white populations living in close proximity or directly on tribal land. Dr. Jeffrey Denis is an Associate professor at McMaster University in Canada wanted to see how small border towns like this talk about race. Wyoming Public Radio’s Taylar Stagner talked with Denis about his new book and the connections he made in Northwest Ontario.

Kamila Kudelska

On an overcast morning, the former owners walked through the gate of what was their home for 20 years.

Heather Ray

Ken Keffer grew up exploring the outdoors around his childhood home in Buffalo. The Wyomingite eventually turned his passion for nature into a career as an educator and author. Wyoming Public Radio's Megan Feighery spoke to him about his new book, Earth Almanac, birding, and his fondness for a unique creature.

Sally Biegert

July 19, 2020 marks the 110th anniversary of the Cathedral Home for Children, a youth residential treatment center in Laramie. A new book, Keeping the Promise: Cathedral Home for Children, tells the organization's history through interviews, photographs, and archival materials.

Former board member Sally Biegert and former executive director Robin Haas spent three years researching, writing, and designing the book. As they told Wyoming Public Radio's Micah Schweizer, the Cathedral Home's origin dates back to an unexpected encounter at the Lander train station in 1910.

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