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Commentaries

Rex Buchanan, measuring water wells in western Kansas. (Photo by Kansas Geological Survey)
Rex Buchanan Friday, September 9th

Irrigators in parts of western Kansas have launched voluntary efforts to cut back on water-usage. They're pumping less water from the massive Ogallala Aquifer in order to conserve and preserve it.

Lowering the large garrison flag at Fort Larned National Historic Site. Taken during Fort Larned's 150th Anniversary on Memorial Day Weekend, 2009. The flag measures 20' by 36'. It is a 37-star flag. (Flickr/KeithWondra)
Rex Buchanan Tuesday, August 9th

The National Park Service turns 100 years old this month. While many will visit Yosemite and Yellowstone this year, Commentator Rex Buchanan says you shouldn't overlook the number of NPS sites right here in Kansas.

Commentator Rex Buchanan views glaciers during a recent trip to Alaska. (Photo by Mindy James)
Rex Buchanan Monday, July 18th

It's hot in Kansas. And while temperatures continue to soar into the upper 90s and even triple digits, Commentator Rex Buchanan has been thinking about a much cooler period of time in our history. Sit back and imagine a time when the northeast corner of Kansas was covered in thick sheets of ice.

Stockton Mayor Kim Thomas has been on the job for nearly 15 years. She's the first African-American woman mayor in Kansas. (Street Photo courtesy of Stockton native Bill Maddy)
Ron Wilson Friday, July 1st

In 2002, Kim Thomas was elected mayor of Stockton, becoming the first African-American woman in Kansas to serve in that office. And she must be doing a good job because nearly 15 years later, she's still the mayor. Guest Commentator Ron Wilson tells us more about this remarkable woman.

Copy of the Lawrence Journal-World. Later this year, the locally-owned paper will have new out-of-state owners. (Photo by J. Schafer)
David J. Brown Wednesday, June 22nd

The Lawrence Journal-World newspaper traces its roots back to 1891, when W.C. Simons arrived in Lawrence. The daily paper has been in the hands of the Simons family since then. But after 125 years of local ownership, the paper is being sold. One loyal reader doesn't like it one bit. Hear what Guest Commentator David J. Brown has to say about the sale of the local daily he both loved and hated.

Published by University Press of Kansas, The Last Wild Places of Kansas shares where to find hidden landscapes across the state. (Flickr Photo by Randy Watson)
Rex Buchanan Thursday, June 2nd

Back in the days of the Old West, Kansas was one wild place. Unsettled and untamed. But what about now? Are there still wild places worth exploring? A new book says YES. Commentator Rex Buchanan reviews The Last Wild Places of Kansas, by George Frazier.

Dave Heinemann (left), President of the Shawnee County Historical Society, presenting an award to KPR Commentator William Jennings Bryan Oleander, designating him "Speaker Emeritus of Kansas History." (Photo by Flint Hills Gal)
Tom Averill Wednesday, May 25th

KPR Commentator William Jennings Bryan Oleander has been designated "Speaker Emeritus of Kansas History" by the Shawnee County Historical Society. And, he has something to say about the wisdom of preservation.

Shrinking the Earth is the title of a new book by Kansas historian Don Worster.  In it, he writes that when Europeans discovered the New World for themselves, it was like discovering a new planet.  But a lot has changed in the past 600 years.
Rex Buchanan Friday, May 13th

Baby, baby... it's a wide world. But the planet is still getting smaller. Sort of. Commentator Rex Buchanan reviews the new book from Kansas historian Don Worster titled: Shrinking the Earth.

Highway to Here, Kansas - hometown of Commentator William Jennings Bryan Oleander. (Photo by Claude Anderson)
Tom Averill Thursday, May 5th

What's the matter with Kansas? She's in trouble. Commentator William Jennings Bryan Oleander tells us why.

The Pawnee Indian Museum's interior in Republic, Kan. (Flickr Photo by Kansas Tourism)
Rex Buchanan Friday, April 29th

What was it like to live on the plains 300 years ago? A museum in north-central Kansas has the answer. If you'd really like to "get away" on your next road trip, this is just the place. It's remote, unusual and interesting -- and chances are, you've never been there. Commentator Rex Buchanan has the low-down on this unique Kansas attraction.

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