March 2013 Archives

Vegetarianism began sweeping the nation during the 1970s, and has grown over the years. Today, as more and more people increase their awareness of food industry practices, a community of vegans is expanding in which people embrace compassion towards animals, and speak out against the current of farm animals. KFAI’s Mahi Palanisami talked with two Twin Cities locals about what it’s like to be vegan.

Upstream Arts is a unique theater company that teaches social and communication skills to youth and adults with disabilities. KFAI producer Dixie Treichel talks to executive director Julie Guidry about how the performing arts are engaging new communities in Twin Cities theater. For more information go to

KFAI producer Sabrina Crews explores a vegan-friendly Twin Cities by talking to advocates who support animal rights and the environment. Locals share the benefits of committing to a life free of animal products, and confront popular misconceptions about being vegan.

Feline Rescue is a nonprofit, volunteer-run cat shelter in Saint Paul. Head volunteer Jocelyn LaBerge tells KFAI’s Sabrina Crews how a troubled economy affects local cat owners, and explains the no-kill approach to rescue. For more information, visit

The Chalice is a young hip-hop collective garnering accolades for dynamic music that champions female empowerment. The trio, featuring Lizzo, Sophia Eris and Claire de Lune, talks to KFAI’s Cyn Collins about how the band evolved, and what it’s like making music in a male-dominated genre.

Since the discovery of electricity, artists have been experimenting with science and music, creating machines that synthesize acoustic sounds. Electronic music took off in the 1960s, but what began as human-controlled synthesizers has morphed into autonomous robots that produce hybrid sounds. KFAI producer Dan Greenwood talks to Iron Range native Troy Rogers, a composer who builds musical robots.

The Minneapolis Pioneers and Soldiers Memorial Cemetery is the oldest existing cemetery in Minneapolis. Since the first burial in 1853, the cemetery has become the final resting place for many who shaped history, from territorial pioneers to military veterans who served in wars ranging from the War of 1812 to World War I. It’s also the resting place for many of the city’s early African-American residents, and for those with ties to the abolitionist movement. KFAI producer Will Wright spoke with Sue Hunter Weir, a volunteer and chairman of Friends of the Cemetery.

America loves the Old West—cowboys, campfires, cattle, and chuck wagons. KFAI producer Britt Aamodt found a little piece of the Old West in a most unexpected place: Effie, Minnesota. In this rural town north of Bemidji, real-life cowboy Howard Pitzen has spent the past 57 years coordinating the Northstar Stampede and Rodeo.

Women’s Art Resources of Minnesota, also known as WARM, connects professional and emerging women artists. WARM began in 1973, embracing feminism and bringing women to the forefront of their local art communities. In 1982, artist Judith Roode created a mentor program to pair successful, established artists with emerging protégées.

Rock of Ages is a musical therapy program and collaboration between Lifeworks—a nonprofit organization serving people with disabilities—and McNally Smith College of Music. Participants are enthusiastic about expressing themselves through rock ‘n roll.