You can find five new winter-themed episodes of Martha Speaks on-air, on klrukids.org, and on the PBS Kids app for Android, iOS, and Kindle (all free)!
KLRU chooses three programs each month for your family to enjoy and view together. In November 2014, we have the following lined up:
Wednesday, November 12 at 7pm: NATURE “Leave It to Beavers” explores how beavers are being recruited to accomplish everything from finding water in a bone-dry desert to recharging water tables and coaxing life back into damaged lands..
Wednesday, November 26 at 7pm: NATURE “My Life As a Turkey,” “An Original Duckumentary” and “The Private Life Of Deer” Get ready to view a NATURE marathon in time for Thanksgiving with these three programs on turkeys, ducks, and white-tailed deer!
KLRU, Leadership Austin, and The Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life recently launched a new website aimed educating and engaging Austinites: imagineoneaustin.org. When voters head to the polls this year they’ll be faced with a very long ballot with lots of new names. This is an historic election year in Austin because voters will elect a new mayor and a new City Council member to represent their geographic region of the city for the first time ever.
On ImagineOneAustin.org you’ll find district maps, information about city wide issues and links to each candidate’s website.
After Election Day, the site will change a little bit to allow neighborhood groups, community organizations, elected officials, and more, to post news and information and to communicate about things happening in their region of the city. We hope to hear from you about what is important in your neighborhood and help you spread the word.
Don’t forget to vote! Early Voting runs October 20th through October 31st. Election Day is November 4th. You can find out more about the site in the video above.
The map in the video is used courtesy Community Impact Newspaper.
This weekend during PBS NewsHour we have two stories that’ll make you appreciate your local swimming hole over the holiday weekend. Both stories come from our partners at The Texas Tribune.
Labor Day tubers heading for the Guadalupe River may want to watch our story from the Tribune’s Alana Rocha on Saturday. Riders are seeing slower currents and at some spots they have to get out and walk.
“With the reduced spring flow, the speed of the current is so slow that what normally a float trip would require a six-pack – now will require a case,” Bill West of the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority quipped.
A longer version of this story is available on The Texas Tribune’s website.
On Sunday, our story travels further south from Austin, all the way to Matagorda Bay. The state’s second largest estuary is at the intersection of the inter-coastal waterway and the Colorado River. Less rain means less freshwater flowing into the area, which is harming seafood and the businesses that depend on it.
“For the Bay to recover we need several things: we need a lot of rain. Also we need to look for cooperative management of our freshwater inflows into the bay,” Leslie Hartman, Matagorda Bay Ecosystem Leader for Texas Parks and Wildlife said. “Certainly people in Austin need fresh water but our bays need fresh water as well.
You can see an extended version of that story here.
KLRU NewsBriefs air locally during PBS NewsHour Weekend at 6:30pm on Saturday and Sunday.
On Saturday during PBS NewsHour Weekend, we hear about an Austin based non-profit establishing innovative techniques in the realm of healthy living education.
KLRU intern Bria Lott brings us the story about WeViva, an organization dedicated to promoting healthy eating and regular fitness habits to adults living in Austin’s low income communities. They provide a team of traveling nutritionists and fitness instructors to people who might not have access to these resources otherwise.
“We bring it to locations that may not have that supportive environment built in. Maybe they’re typically unsafe neighborhoods or people don’t want to go outside, but by bringing something to them that’s fun and enjoyable and free they’ll want to come out for it,” Founder Carolyn Haney said.
In the beginning stages WeViva started in only one neighborhood. They now serve 14 communities across Austin with intentions for growth in the near future.
On Sunday, our story comes from our partners at The Texas Tribune. Reporter Alana Rocha went inside the Harris County Jail to talk to female inmates participating in the “We’ve Been There Done That” rehabilitation program.
Most of the women have been charged with prostitution and those sentenced to the program must serve a minimum of 90 days, time that counts toward their sentence. The program has been so successful that the 83rd state legislature passed a law to establish prostitution courts elsewhere in Texas.
You can learn more about the program in the Tribune’s story here.
KLRU NewsBriefs air locally during PBS NewsHour Weekend at 6:30 on Saturday and Sunday evening.
This Sunday during PBS NewsHour Weekend we’ll preview a Central Texas Gardener story about an East Austin company offering a fossil fuel-free way to compost.
Since 2012, East Side Compost Pedallers has cycled through 5 neighborhoods to collect residential and commercial compostables. Residential customers pay $4 a week, each opting to spare the landfill and instead nourish their neighborhood farms and urban microgrowers.
East Side Pies pays the Compost Pedallers to pick up their vegetable scraps. They say they’ve even attracted more customers as a result.
“We have a lot of vegetable scrap and instead of it going into a dumpster it goes back into soil and our local community and gets more food for everybody. The fact that we’re taking several hundred pounds of waste out of the landfill I think more than makes up for the small cost that we pay,” Randall Holt of East Side Pies told us.
East Side Compost Pedallers recently won the Austin Green Business Leaders Communication and Outreach award.
KLRU NewsBriefs air locally during PBS NewsHour Weekend. An extended version of “Will Pedal for Compost” will air during Central Texas Gardener on July 12 at noon.
This weekend during PBS NewsHour we have two East Austin education stories.
On Saturday, we’ll introduce you to one of Austin’s newest charter schools and the city’s only public Montessori school: Magnolia Montessori for All. Founder and Principal Sara Cotner told KLRU about why she chose to locate the school in East Austin.
“In Austin there are more than 20 Montessori schools and they’re all private and they’re all west of I-35. East Austin is this beautiful opportunity where there’s a lot of diversity, a lot of different kinds of families, a rich history of commitment to the community,” Ms. Cotner said. “We feel really honored that we were able to find land that was available here and connect with families who were really interested in this vision.”
The school opens August 4th with 3-year-olds through 3rd graders in portable classrooms. They plan to add a grade level every year through 8th grade. Construction is still underway at the site.
On Sunday, we’ll air our conversation with Ada Anderson, an Austin Civil Rights pioneer who donated $3 million this week to Huston-Tillotson University – the largest gift the school has ever received. The funds will be used to build the Sandra Joy Anderson Community Health and Wellness Center (pictured above), a facility which will serve students and surrounding residents. It is named for Mrs. Anderson’s daughter.
“We all know more and more the need for mental health and the plans for the building just fit so perfectly to what [my daughter and her husband] did,” Mrs. Anderson told us. “There are a lot of people [in East Austin] who don’t have a lot of money who I think will be served there so that’s one of the really exciting things to me.”
HT tells us work will begin on the new building very soon.
These stories air on KLRU at 6:30 on Saturday and Sunday evening during PBS NewsHour Weekend.
This week during PBS NewsHour Weekend, we’ll air excerpts from Juneteenth Jamboree, a 30 minute special about Bell County’s African-American history.
On Saturday, we introduce you to some famous names who have called Bell County home, including “Mean Joe” Greene and Alvin Ailey. Stephanie Turnham of the Bell County Museum told us Ailey’s first creation of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 1958, “Blues Suite,” was inspired by his early childhood in Rogers, Texas.
“It starts out with the train whistle, way in the background and, of course, that tells us that work is over for the day. So, all of these characters come out to this juke joint, or whatever you want to call it, and light up the night,” Turnham said. “Alvin remembers beautiful women dressed up and men with their .38 Specials and that sort of thing.”
On Sunday, we hear why Killeen is known as one of the most diverse cities in Texas – thanks in large part to Fort Hood. When it was called Camp Hood during World War II, the all African-American 761st Tank Battalion was stationed on post. Also known as the Black Panther Battalion, the group included baseball legend Jackie Robinson.
Racial segregation policies of the times initially kept them out of the conflict overseas, but the 761st, nonetheless, achieved a superior combat rating and were deployed to the European theater, where they performed with precision and bravery. Today, a monument on post is dedicated to them.
Wilbert Byrd, President of the Central Texas Memorial Chapter of the 761st Tank Battalion & Allied Veterans Association tells us that before the memorial was built, the group was largely forgotten.
“They said the 761st? Who? Everybody knows about the Tuskegee Airmen, everybody knows about what they did, but nobody had ever heard of the 761st Tank Battalion even with all the things that they had done,” Byrd said. “We think we came up with something that was not only appropriate, not only was it elegant, but it was simple and it did what we wanted to do, it informed the public about the 761st Tank Battalion and their exploits during WWII.”
You can see both of these stories during PBS NewsHour weekend this Saturday and Sunday at 6:30pm. You can see Juneteenth Jamboree tonight, June 19 at 7:30pm and Tuesday, June 24 at 10:30pm.
This Sunday during PBS NewsHour Weekend, we go inside the Austin Water Utility’s 20th annual Water Science Expo. Area 5th and 6th graders attended the event on Tuesday and Wednesday to learn about the importance of responsible water use. Austin Water employees did demonstrations for the kids in an interactive event which was fun and educational.
“We take it very seriously to educate this generation and future generations about the value of taking your water very seriously,” Austin Water spokesperson Jill Mayfield said. “It’s no secret that we’re in a very severe drought and that we need to be mindful and aware of how we use water every day.”
Mayfield said the event also served as a way to educate parents, because the kids go home and tell their families what they learned.
On Saturday, we’ll air an Arts in Context Short about #ATXFreeArtFriday, an Instagram art treasure hunt. You can see that piece online here.
KLRU News Briefs air locally on Saturday and Sunday during PBS NewsHour Weekend.