The Front Blog

Conversations from the Four Rivers Region

The Front Blog Retires!

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Well it’s been a good run for The Front Blog. It was created out of a need to communicate in a more flexible, immediate manner than our content management system for news allowed. We’ve used the blog to announce the past two election cycles, all-night emergency updates, to introduce you to new music and great books, to give you the news in under a minute. We’re pleased to announce that these great features will continue on our new, expanded content management system, using NPR Digital Services’ Core Publisher platform, which you can browse here:

news.wkms.org

The new platform is not unlike the blog-style format we enjoyed here on “The Blog.” And better yet, it merges the content produced here and in the News Room into a more concise, user-friendly format. The Morning Cram and Datebook are some our favorite features created for the web, and we’ll continue to post them every day on news.wkms.org. We’re also introducing Afternoon Update, creating a more complete round-up of news produced by WKMS. We want the new site to be as interactive as possible, so commenting will soon be added to all of our news stories and cultural content. Check out the new site, let us know what you think. We appreciate the feedback!

Morning Cram: news.wkms.org/term/morning-cram

Afternoon Update: news.wkms.org/term/afternoon-update

Datebook: news.wkms.org/term/datebook

Good Reads: news.wkms.org/term/good-reads

Music Reviews & Cultural Links: news.wkms.org/term/culture

Written by Matt Markgraf

February 24, 2012 at 4:58 pm

Datebook: February 24 – Battle of Los Angeles 70 Years Ago

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On the evening of February 24, 1942, air raid sirens went off throughout Los Angeles County. A total blackout was ordered and air raid wardens were summoned to position. At 3:16 a.m., the 37th Coast Artillery Brigade began firing 12.8-pound anti-aircraft shells at a reported unidentified aircraft. Pilots of the 4th Interceptor Command were alerted but stayed grounded. Artillery fire continued until the 4:14 a.m., over 1,400 shells fired. An “all clear” was sounded and a blackout order lifted at 7:21 a.m. Three civilians were killed, another three died of heart attacks, several buildings were damaged. Initially, the target of the aerial barrage was thought to be an attacking force from Japan, but speaking at a press conference shortly afterward, Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox called the incident a “false alarm.” Newspapers of the time published a number of sensational reports and speculations of a cover-up. Some modern-day UFOlogists have suggested the targets were extraterrestrial spacecraft. When documenting the incident in 1983, the U.S. Office of Air Force History attributed the event to a case of “war nerves” likely triggered by a lost weather balloon and exacerbated by stray flares and shell bursts from adjoining batteries.

It’s Friday, February 24

Artwork by Adam Meredith is on display through March 25 at the Janice Mason Art Museum in Cadiz. Meredith specializes in historically themed figurative graphite drawings and photography. He also constructs miniature buildings, which will be included in the exhibit. The opening reception is tonight from 5 to 7.

Murray Preschool, Head Start, and Early Head Start will hold registration for the 2012-2013 school year next Friday from 8 to 3. Registration for children ages four and under will be held on the first floor of Alexander Hall, located on North 16th Street. For more information, call 809-3262.

Author Jennifer Trafton will give a reading and sign copies of her novel, “The Rise and Fall of Mount Majestic,” tomorrow at 11:30 at the University Book and Bean. Trafton’s debut novel tells the story of one brave girl’s efforts to make an entire island believe the impossible. For more information, call 761-BOOK.

Find more community events at wkms.org, where you can also learn about supporting public radio. Thanks.

the morning cram [just give me two good burgers edition]

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If all else fails, act as if you belong…

NPR reports a Wisconsin man is in jail for walking into a Denny’s, announcing he is the new manager and cooking himself a burger. How long is the jail term for Awesome in the second degree?

Kentucky~ The Murray City Council discusses whether or not to make students buy a city sticker. MSU gets some B-Ball payback! The gambling amendment is DOA in the senate. A pseudoephedrine bill is withdrawn.  The state Supreme Court will hear redistricting arguments today.  A group challenges Beshear’s prayer breakfast.

Datebook: February 23 – Supernova 1987A Visible to Naked Eye 25 Years Ago

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Supernova 1987A was located in the outskirts of the Tarantula Nebula in the Large Magellanic Cloud, a nearby dwarf galaxy, approximately 168,000 light-years away, though close enough to be visible to the naked eye if you lived in the Southern Hemisphere. The light from the supernova reached Earth on February 23, 1987. It was the first opportunity for modern astronomers to see a supernova up close and observations have provided much insight into core-collapse supernovae. Voyager 2, then enroute to Neptune, was able to observe the supernova with its cameras.

It’s Thursday, February 23

The Howard Finster Vision House Touring Exhibit goes on display tonight at the WKCTC Clemens Fine Arts Center Gallery. Finster’s images range from pop culture icons like Elvis to historical figures such as George Washington to religious images of his own visions. There’s a reception tonight from 5 to 7, with an artist talk by curator David Leonardis at 6. The exhibit runs through March 23.

The Modernette Civic Club sponsors their 18th Annual African American Breakfast on Saturday at 8AM at the James E. Bruce Convention Center in Hopkinsville. The keynote speaker will be Mr. John Johnson, Executive Director for the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights in Louisville. $12 tickets can be purchased at the door.

Western Baptist Hospital offers free screenings during a Heart Health Fair on Saturday from 9 to noon in the atrium of Doctors Office Building 2. Western Baptist staff will provide blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, and EKG rhythm strip screenings. Fasting and advance registration are not required.

Find more community events online at wkms.org.

Datebook: February 22 – George Washington Turns 280

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George Washington was born on February 22, 1732 (and died December 14, 1799). We all know him as the 1st U.S. President (1789-1797), and as a great military leader. He was elected unanimously and oversaw the creation of a strong, well-financed government that maintained neutrality in the wars raging in Europe. He was born into a wealthy Colonial Virginia family, who owned tobacco plantations and slaves. He was mentored by William Fairfax, who promoted his career into the military. He quickly became a senior officer in the colonial forces during the French and Indian War. As  Commander-In-Chief of the Continental Army, he forced the British out of Boston in 1776, but lost New York City. After crossing the Delaware River, he defeated the British in two battles, and retook New Jersey. Washintgon strategized the capture of Saratoga in 1777 and Yorktown in 1781. As President, he supported Alexander Hamilton’s programs to pay off the debt, to implement a tax system, and to create a national bank. He was outspoken against partisanship, sectoinalism, and involvement in foreign wars. He retired from presidency in 1797 and returned to his home, Mount Vernon. He freed his slaves in his will. At his death, Washington was hailed as “first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen”.

It’s Wednesday, February 22

The American Red Cross holds a blood drive at First Presbyterian Church in Murray tomorrow from 12:30 to 5:30.  Donors must be healthy, at least seventeen years old, and at least 110 pounds.  Schedule an appointment by calling 800-RED-CROSS.

The Pennyrile Forest State Resort Park hosts an Oil Painting Weekend this Saturday and Sunday.  Learn the wet-on-wet method of oil painting by creating your own 16×20 landscape painting.  The fees are $65 for one class or $120 for both classes and the Friday night program.  For more information, call Rebecca Clark at 797-3421.

The Murray State University Department of Theater presents Suddenly Last Summer, by Tennessee Williams, tomorrow night at 7:30 in the Actor’s Studio Theater.  The play tells the story of a young woman who seems to go insane after her cousin dies under mysterious circumstances. Admission is $8, or free for MSU students.

Tomorrow at noon, hear Swinging into the 21st Century with Wynton Marsalis.  Find details at wkms.org.

the morning cram [the I don’t know how to put this but I’m kind of a big deal edition]

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Gentlemen, telling the ladies that you have a Silver Star, Purple Heart and the Congressional Medal of Honor may get you more than shot down at the bar…

NPR reports the Supreme Court is considering whether or not claiming you’ve won medals could get you thrown in the clink.

Kentucky~ Paducah officials want to reevaluate the areas earthquake risk.  Senator Paul does some pro bono surgery in Paducah.A Paducah juvenile was arrested for burning down three homes. State officials debate the drop out age bill. The UPIKE debate continues.

Tennessee~ The “Don’t Say Gay” bill loses some momentum.

Datebook: February 21 – Waldo Waterman’s Flying Car Lifts Off 75 Years Ago

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What ever happened to the flying car? Why don’t we live like the Jetsons today? Waldo Waterman invented the first tailless monoplane, the first aircraft with modern tricycle landing gear, and the first successful low cost and simple to fly flying car. The idea behind the Arrowbile was to develop a transmission drive system that could operate the propeller for flight and the rear wheels for groudn operation. The aircraft was required to meet the certification standards of thee Bureau of Air Commerce. Waldo used readily available auto components for most of the vehicle. The only device used for flight control was a wheel yoke suspended from the cabin – the same used to turn the nose wheel in ground operation. Waterman flew the first test flight of the Arrowbile on February 21, 1937, and found the aircraft easy to fly and virtually spin and stall proof. The price tag was $3,000 (over $45,000 today). Waldo continued to improve his design over the next few decades. In 1957, the aircraft was listed in the experimental category, but the market had vanished. His flying car can be seen at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum.

It’s Tuesday, February 21

Jian Ping, the author of “Mulberry Child: A Memoir of China,” gives a reading on Thursday at 7:30PM in the Clara M. Eagle Art Gallery. The reading is free and open to the public, with a book signing and reception to follow at the Faculty Club. The film adaptation of the book will be shown tomorrow at 7:30 in the Alexander Hall Auditorium.

The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network holds a meeting Thursday evening at 6:30 at The Legacy Personal Care Home in Paducah. The meeting is open to supporters, pancreatic cancer survivors, caregivers, and those interested in joining the fight against pancreatic cancer. To learn more, visit pancan.org.

Playhouse in the Park presents “13” Friday and Saturday at 7PM and on Sunday at 2:30. The high-energy musical is about discovering that cool is where you find it, and sometimes where you least expect it. Reserve tickets by calling the Playhouse at 759-1752.

Find more about these and other community events at wkms.org, and thanks for listening.

Written by Matt Markgraf

February 21, 2012 at 10:56 am

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