Governor John Hickenlooper signed a bill into law today that aims to better train coaches to recognize concussions in middle school and high school athletes. The measure is named after 14-year-old Jake Snakenberg, a football player from Grandview High School. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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The annual Elk Mountains Grand Traverse takes off from Crested Butte tonight at midnight. Participants spend anywhere from seven to eighteen hours skiing across the Elk Mountains on their way to the finish line at the bottom of Aspen Mountain. They risk frostbite, getting lost in the dark, falling into more than [...]

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A bill that aims to better train coaches to recognize concussions in middle and high school students initially cleared the state senate yesterday. The National Football League is advocating for similar measures across the country in an effort to reduce serious injuries. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Colorado Democratic lawmakers say they’ll try to reverse a decision cutting off free breakfasts for needy children…Two rodeo events some consider cruel to animals are up for debate in the Colorado legislature…and, a Denver seminary is offering a master’s degree for military chaplains aimed at helping them assist servicemen and women suffering from post-traumatic stress [...]

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The flu season is underway and area health officials expect it to be less severe than last year….and, the U.S. Olympic Committee adds five new board members.

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This month we’re going to spend the hour looking back at some of the topics we covered since kicking off the revival of Western Skies in June. There was a lot of overlap, stories that could have appeared in multiple episodes, and themes that kept popping up from topic to topic. Here are some [...]

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You don’t have to be a rock climber or a mountaineer to appreciate the outer limits of human ability and endurance to which these athletes often push themselves. For the past five years Colorado College graduate Pete Mortimer (’97) has been helping to curate Reel Rock, a mini touring film festival that features most daring and innovative climbers and mountaineers from around the world. This year’s festival includes films about a free climber who uses a base parachute instead of ropes to ascend some of the most spectacular climbs in the world by himself; a speed-climber and alpinist who climbs the Eiger in under 3 hours; and two young men from Boulder who complete the most technically difficult bouldering routes in the world.

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An economic forecast released yesterday shows that higher than expected unemployment has pushed the state’s budget further into the red….Insurance companies estimate the so-called Fourmile Canyon Fire west of Boulder caused an estimated $217 million in damage…and, the US Olympic Committee has announced that the Warrior Games are scheduled to return to Colorado Springs next [...]

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Several thousand cyclists gathered at the state capitol yesterday to celebrate the return of an international stage race to Colorado. Tour de France Champion Lance Armstrong and Governor Bill Ritter made the announcement in front of an almost giddy crowd. Bente Birkeland has more.

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The Army’s 4th Brigade Combat Team, which lost 39 soldiers during a yearlong deployment in Afghanistan, is formally marking it’s return to Fort Carson…and, some of the biggest names in cycling are helping to bring a major international stage race back to Colorado.

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It’s not a professional sporting event, nor is there any prize money, nor is there any reward beyond bragging rights and having done it. It’s the 500-mile Colorado Trail Race through the backcountry. And even though you can’t watch it on television or listen to it on the radio, you can follow the racers, all of whom have GPS SPOT Tracking devices, on The Big Something.

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Conversations about the importance of sports and fitness to our local economy, a look at Yoga as both sport and spiritual practice, a visit to the United States Anti-Doping Agency, a look back at Colorado Springs’ first professional baseball team and more on this month’s edition of Western Skies.

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Athletics in the Pikes Peak region take on many forms, from outdoor sports like cycling and running, to Olympic level competition, to minor league baseball. This month, Western Skies takes a look at sports in the Pikes Peak region.

Click here to listen to the show.

Western Skies is a collaboration between KRCC News [...]

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Athletics in the Pikes Peak region take on many forms, from outdoor sports like cycling and running, to Olympic level competition, to minor league baseball. This month, Western Skies takes a look at sports in the region.

You can download the full episode, or listen here:

You can also head to the individual [...]

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Of the 100,000 american high school seniors that play football each year, only 215 will make it to the national football league. One of those was was Manitou Springs native, Justin Armour. After stints with the Buffalo Bills, Baltimore Ravens, and the Denver Broncos, Armour has returned to his hometown of Manitou Springs to raise [...]

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Clearly mainstream professional sports aren’t really a part of the athletic identity of the Pikes Peak region. This month’s roundtable features a conversation with local sports promoter and consultant Mike Moran, and Tim Bergsten of PikesPeakSports.us, which is a social network for runners, bicyclists, and others in the area.

Download or listen [...]

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The Pikes Peak Region has seen an explosion of yoga practices in recent years, much like the rest of the nation. They range from traditional practices based in its spiritual roots to power, or core yoga, which focuses more on physical strength. KRCC’s Michelle Mercer practices yoga and examines [...]

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To find out more about efforts to curb the use of performance enhancing drugs in sports, KRCC’s Noel Black recently visited the United States Anti-Doping Agency in Colorado Springs.

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Despite the fact that the Pikes Peak Region is home to the Olympic Training Center, an excellent network of trails and bike paths, and hundreds of miles of easily accessible mountain biking, Colorado Springs is just beginning to be known outside the area as cycling destination. KRCC’s Noel Black spoke with local Olympian and World Mountain Biking Champion Allison Dunlap and Colorado Springs Senior Transportation Planner Kristin Bennett about one of the area’s best kept secrets.

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Few people remember that Colorado Springs once had a professional baseball team called The Millionaires. Jeff Bieri reads this excerpt from Marshall Sprague’s history of the region Newport in the Rockies.

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The grueling, self-supported Colorado Trail Race begins next Tuesday. We interviewed Colorado Springs bicyclist Doug Johnson last year after he placed second in the the epic 470-mile back-country race along the Colorado Trail from Denver to Durango with a time of 4 days and 20 hours. In this interview and slide show, Johnson talks about the technical and mental challenges and why he does it.

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Cup soccer balls, but alas: all praise must go to The New York Times for this beautiful illustrated history of the evolution of the ball at the center of the world’s most popular sport.

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Colorado Springs is home to the United States Olympic Committee and Training Center, where athletes from across the country come to train and compete. But this week, the city plays host to the Warrior Games, with an invitation to 200 injured athletes from the country’s military branches. It’s geared toward wounded, ill, or injured veterans, [...]

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News

AFP/Getty Images
April 24, 2014 | NPR · Simon Ostrovsky, a reporter for VICE News, was seized at gunpoint by masked men in the city of Slovyansk earlier this week. He is reportedly safe and in good health.
 

AP
April 24, 2014 | NPR · Vermont is the first state to pass a law requiring GMO labeling, and other states are close behind. But a federal lawmaker recently introduced a bill that would outlaw state rules like Vermont’s.
 

San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park K01.2.571PL
April 24, 2014 | NPR · The City of Chester, which went down in 1888 after colliding with a liner, has been found. At the time, false reports that the other ship’s Chinese crew failed to assist stoked racial hatred.
 

Arts & Life

April 24, 2014 | NPR · Debbie Allen won Fame for playing an iconic dance teacher in film and television. Now, she’s getting new fans for roles on shows like Grey’s Anatomy. She talks about the highs and lows of her career.
 

Twentieth Century Fox
April 24, 2014 | NPR · A film that seems designed to demonstrate the dire circumstances in which funny women can still find themselves, The Other Woman is a grotesque pantomime of female empowerment.
 

Courtesy of Ogilvy Brazil
April 24, 2014 | NPR · Kids don’t want to look different, especially if the reason they look different is because they’ve lost their hair to chemotherapy. If Hello Kitty’s gone bald, too, maybe it won’t feel so bad.
 

Music

Q2 Music
April 24, 2014 | Q2 · Take a tour of the MacArthur genius’s home in Harlem, including a look at his Steinway, favorite books and percussion instruments from India.
 

Courtesy of the artist
April 24, 2014 | NPR · Even today’s musicians know jazz has a rapidly-changing, living, breathing history. In a new video, young gun Kris Bowers takes a YouTube tour from ragtime and stride through the present day.
 

Courtesy of the artist
April 24, 2014 | NPR · The video for The Darcys’ powerful song “Hunting” shows the dark side of life in an apartment building that echoes the Hitchcock film Rear Window, using subtly beautiful CGI and matte paintings.
 

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