Full disclosure, I make several brief appearances in The Western Way, a documentary produced by Susan Loo Pattee and the Cheyenne Mountain Heritage Center that seeks to broadly decode the odd DNA of Colorado Springs and its histories through the voices of many including Colorado College Professor Ann Hyde, Philanthropist and Entrepreneur Lyda [...]

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Nearly 50 officers and precinct leaders with the El Paso County Republican Party voted today to nominate Bernie Herpin in the Senate District 11 recall effort of Democrat John Morse. Herpin received 30 votes, while candidate Jaxine Bubis received 18. Bubis is expected to withdraw from the race after the two signed an agreement [...]

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With the passage last year of Amendment 64, Cities and counties around Colorado are deciding whether to allow recreational marijuana shops and grow operations within their boundaries. Denver City Council said yes. El Paso County said no. The city of Pueblo passed a moratorium, deciding, in effect, to decide later. Colorado Springs City Council [...]

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.6 of an inch of rain in 15 minutes caused flash flooding yesterday, sending debris onto Highway 24, temporarily closing some roads, and damaging about 20 homes.

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Amendment 64 voted into law last year decriminalized recreational marijuana in Colorado for adults 21 and over. Now Colorado Springs, like local governments around the state, has about three months to decide whether to regulate retail marijuana sales or to ban such shops within city limits. As KRCC’s Liz Ruskin reports, City Council yesterday [...]

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The devastating 2002 wildfire season generated public discussion about the need for treatments to fix our dangerously overgrown forests. A decade later, the Front Range has been hit with consecutive record-setting fire seasons, which has a lot of Colorado residents wondering why more of that treatment hasn’t happened. In this story that originally aired [...]

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This year’s wildfire season continues with serious and devastating impacts across the state. Still, officials point to mitigation as helping preserve homes in neighborhoods like Black Forest’s Cathedral Pines…

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The Black Forest Fire destroyed over 500 homes, leaving those homeowners with a difficult decision: should they rebuild? Back in April, KRCC’s Michelle Mercer talked to some Waldo Canyon Fire victims about the tough choices they’ve made.

Since this piece aired in April, rebuilding permits have trickled in: now 198 permits have been issued, [...]

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This week marks one year since the Waldo Canyon Fire erupted into what was at the time, the most destructive wildfire in state history, claiming nearly 350 homes and two lives. Now, residents of the Pikes Peak region are again sifting through ruins: this month, the Black Forest Fire destroyed more than 500 homes and claimed two lives.

This week we’re rerunning our series Flash Point: Living with Wildfire. This special series explores how we’re managing the ongoing threat of fire, and looks at what it means to reside within reach of mountain forests.

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Containment is at 55%. Some areas are opening up as of 8 PM to a pre-evacuation notice: The area north of Hodgen Rd. and west of Black Forest Rd., and areas north of Walker Rd. High Forest Ranch will also be downgraded to preevacuation status. Access is from the north. Highway 83, Walker Road, and Meridian Road are still closed. El Paso County has released updated assessments of homes: 483 total loss, 17 partial damage, 3451 appear unaffected. Our notes follow:

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Colorado is no stranger to the military. From active bases to a large veteran population, many residents of the state have some kind of association with the armed services. This month for Western Skies, we’re exploring some of those relationships.

You can listen to the entire episode here, or download it by right-clicking [...]

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Colorado Springs, Manitou Springs, and El Paso County officials released a new preliminary flash flood risk analysis today for areas in and near the Waldo Canyon burn scar. The report models a specific rain event that has about a 10% chance of occurring in any given year. Patty Baxter with the El Paso County Office [...]

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The Colorado Springs Office of Emergency Management is offering another round of free sandbags today to residents affected by potential flooding, starting at 5 PM.

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Colorado Springs City Council yesterday voted to spend $10 million from the city savings account to lessen the risk of catastrophic fire and flooding following last year’s Waldo Canyon fire. KRCC’s Liz Ruskin reports.

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Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach yesterday unveiled his vision for a 24-hour campus to serve the homeless. As KRCC’s Liz Ruskin reports, the mayor is looking for property downtown that can provide everything from showers to meals to drug counseling.

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Residents of Mountain Shadows and others are invited to an informational meeting Tuesday, May 7th. The meeting is expected to address updated information regarding the increased flood risk and the city’s planned response to a potential flash flooding. Presenters are planning to spend the first half focusing specifically on risk in the Mountain Shadows [...]

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In the wake of last year’s destructive wildfires, Colorado’s residents, scientists, and government officials have been working hard to manage the ongoing threat. We’re not only mitigating our landscapes; we’re adapting our very understanding of what it means to reside within reach of mountain forests. Join KRCC News for “Flash Point,” a special series [...]

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The devastating 2002 wildfire season generated public discussion about the need for treatments to fix our dangerously overgrown forests. Ten years later the Front Range was hit with another destructive fire season, which has a lot of Colorado residents wondering why more of that treatment hasn’t happened. KRCC’s Michelle Mercer looks into the status [...]

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In one of its first actions, the new Colorado Springs City Council yesterday shelved an expansion of a solar energy program. And, as KRCC’s Liz Ruskin reports, a new practice by Council President Keith King signaled what the outcome would be.

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For many, the notion of the Wildland Urban Interface, or WUI, may conjure up images of sparsely populated regions of cabins in the woods. That’s only part of the picture. In Colorado Springs, nearly a quarter of the population lives in neighborhoods classified as part of the WUI, and it stretches into some unexpected [...]

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News of the Waldo Canyon Fire recovery has sounded an almost unanimous refrain, championing the efforts to rebuild in Mountain Shadows. But as KRCC’s Michelle Mercer reports in today’s Flash Point piece, that tells only part of the recovery story.

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Colorado Springs officials recently released their Final After Action Report, detailing the city’s response during the Waldo Canyon Fire. Authors studied hours of dispatch tape, personal accounts, and logs to assess what the city did right, and what needs improvement. KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin begins this series with a look at the nature of Emergency Management.

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In the wake of last year’s destructive wildfires, Colorado’s residents, scientists, and government officials have been working hard to manage the ongoing threat. We’re not only mitigating our landscapes; we’re adapting our very understanding of what it means to reside within reach of mountain forests. Join KRCC News for “Flash Point,” a special series produced by Andrea Chalfin and Michelle Mercer on how wildfire is changing life in Colorado. Click here for an interactive timeline, stories, and additional web content.

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News

December 19, 2014 | NPR · The Supreme Court declined to extend a stay on a ruling by U.S. District Judge Robert L. Hinkle, who said in August that Florida’s 2008 ban is unconstitutional. The stay expires in January.
 

December 19, 2014 | NPR · This week, President Obama announced that he will begin to normalize relations with Cuba. Cuban-American writer Richard Blanco recommends a book about Cuba’s imprint on the American imagination.
 

Reuters /Landov
December 19, 2014 | NPR · Melissa Block talks to Sony Pictures CEO Michael Lynton about the cyber attack against his company and the cancellation of the Christmas Day release of The Interview.
 

Arts & Life

December 19, 2014 | NPR · This week, President Obama announced that he will begin to normalize relations with Cuba. Cuban-American writer Richard Blanco recommends a book about Cuba’s imprint on the American imagination.
 

Sony Pictures Classics
December 19, 2014 | NPR · Critic Bob Mondello says Mike Leigh’s earthy new biopic about the famed British painter J.M.W Turner shows viewers the incandescent beauty of the world as Turner himself must have seen it.
 

iStockphoto
December 19, 2014 | NPR · Tamales are a Christmas Eve tradition throughout Latin America, but there are hundreds of different versions. Whose is best? That’s a question likely to elicit a fiercely partisan response.
 

Music

Mountain Stage
December 19, 2014 | NPR · The bassist and singer based her latest album on memories of running away from home as a teenager.
 

Getty Images
December 19, 2014 | NPR · After more than a decade offstage raising his daughters, the singer is touring. “It’s like nothing is being held back,” he says. “You get to eat mashed potatoes with both hands instead of one.”
 

Courtesy of the artist
December 19, 2014 | NPR · Three decades after her first interview with him, Fiona Ritchie meets up with the Scottish musician, who’s known for a long career with the legendary Battlefield Band.
 

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