Veteran journalist Dante Chinni (PBS NewsHour) will speak on "Our Patchwork Nation: The Ozarks and the Road Ahead" at 7:30 PM, January 24 in Meyer Library Room 101.
Chinni is project director of Patchwork Nation, an effort to get beyond the red/blue map of American politics by dividing the nation's 3,141 counties into 12 community types. Nixa, Missouri is the community the project chose to represent the country’s 468 or so Evangelical Epicenter counties. In the past, Chinni has worked for the Christian Science Monitor and Newsweek. Together with James Gimpel, he is the author of the newly released Our Patchwork Nation: The Surprising Truth About the "Real" America, The 12 Community Types That Make Up Our Nation (Gotham Books, 2010). The book includes an entire chapter on Nixa, Missouri.
Veteran journalist Dante Chinni has worked for the Christian Science Monitor, Newsweek, and the Project for Excellence in Journalism. He is native of a Detroit, Michigan area. He is project director of Patchwork Nation.
First Friday Art Walk presents an intimate little Art Walk to start the New Year. While our University galleries, as well as the Creamery Arts Center, are taking a break for winter holiday, there’s still plenty to see and do with Art Walk’s 14 participating galleries full of original art, music, food and fun Friday January 7th from 6-10 pm. January highlights include: the work of featured artists Dale Brueggemann and Debbie Reed at Fresh Gallery; the internationally renowned art of Springfield’s own Brad Noble, on display at Hawthorn Galleries in January; Good Girl Art Gallery features "Sensual Sects," a playful and stimulating body of work by Becca Rutledge, plus "Cherry Street and the Lone Star State," a Senior Exhibition by Ashley Byers; art by Fayae Clifton's students at Ash Grove High School at Park Central Branch Library; discounts, drawings and new albums at Red Door Studios; north of the Square, visit Phelps Street to enjoy work by photographer Joyce McMurtrey at Obelisk Home, art by Gavyn Sky at Revel Advertising and the original creations of Karen Schneider, Kat Allie and Stephanie Cramer at Inveno Health; and see the ancient art of glassblowing create modern works of art as Springfield Hot Glass Studio crafts "Abstract Animals" including elephants and antelope. Other galleries on the January 7th Art Walk include Abundant Life Covenant Church, Canvas, Farmers Gastropub, the Gillioz Theatre, and SPringfield Pottery. For families on the go, the Downtown Y offers "Family Art Night," with affordable child care for Art Walking parents, serving children ages 3 months to 12 years, 6:30-9 p.m. for $10 per child with preregistration. Kids enjoy healthy activities and snacks, story time and a hands-on art project to take home. Call (417) 862-8962, ext. 149, for information or to preregister. For information on the First Friday Art Walk, visit their website at www.ffaw.org or call 849-8255.
The Springfield Regional Arts Council presents First Night Springfield, the annual community-wide, alcohol-free celebration of the visual and performing arts to ring in 2011 with live music, theatre, children's activities, fireworks and more. First Night will be held in downtown Springfield on Friday, Dec. 31, 2010, from 5:30 p.m. to midnight. This year's event will feature over 25 performances at 10 venues in downtown Springfield, including performances by Chris Sligh (American Idol finalist, season 6), Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin, the Skinny Improv, SuperCharge, Grupo Latinoamericano, the Japan America Friendship Group, and many more local performing groups. First Night will also offer hands-on activities for children, rock climbing, ice skating and a fireworks finale in Jordan Valley Park. First Night admission stickers can be purchased in advance for $7 per person or $25 for a family four-pack, at the following locations: area Kum & Go locations, Price Cutter Stores, Springfield-Greene County Library locations, the Creamery Arts Center and the Urban Districts Alliance office. Festivities will begin at 5:30pm, with a fireworks grand finale at midnight in Jordan Valley Park. A complete list of First Night Springfield venues and a complete performance schedule are available online at
The Springfield Regional Arts Council, with help from the Junior League of Springfield, is celebrating the season and joining downtown Springfield’s “Festival of Lights” by sponsoring a community-wide Free Art Day at The Creamery Arts Center, Saturday, December 18 from 10 a.m. to noon. Several fun activity stations will be available, including holiday cookie decorating, wrapping paper printmaking, and creating a crafty snowman and a glass ball ornament. The Springfield-Greene County Library will also provide storytelling. All ages and artistic abilities are welcome for hands-on art activities, no registration is required. Every participant can create and take home one item from each station, with instruction and supplies provided by Springfield Regional Arts Council staff and volunteers. The Creamery, 411 N. Sherman Parkway, is located in Jordan Valley Park, at the intersection of Sherman and Trafficway, just west of Hammons Field. For more information call the Arts Council at 862-ARTS (2787) or visit www.springfieldarts.org.
The G.O.A.T. Tour (Greater Ozarks Arts Tour), administered by the Springfield Regional Arts Council, brings the visual and performing arts to communities throughout the 27-county area served by the Arts Council. Bucky Bowman was the first "shepherd" of the project, and Stephanie Cramer of the Arts Council now oversees it.
The Springfield Police Department will increase its efforts in getting drunk-drivers off the streets this holiday season. This is part of a state-wide effort to reduce deaths and serious injuries caused by impaired drivers. KSMU’s Adam Hammons has more.
The Nixa High School Choral Program's Holiday Madrigal Concert is scheduled for Monday, December 13, at 7 p.m. in the Nixa High School auditorium. It's an evening of holiday music and medieval humor, with all four Nixa High School choirs involved, and all in costume. The Chamber Choir is "royalty" for the evening and they have invited the "peasants" to the palace for a evening of holiday festivities. The Concert Choir, Mixed Chorus and Women's Choir all join in for a night of singing and merry making. The Madrigal is the premier fundraiser for the Nixa High choral program with general admission seating at $5. Proceeds from the concert are used by the Boosters to enhance the choral program by purchasing things like robe cabinets, robe bags, Madrigal costumes and technology equipment and software. For more information call 724-3548.
Four Loko is an alcoholic energy drink that has been gaining popularity among college students. Across the nation, the drink is being banned for its dangerous effects of combining caffeine and alcohol. Here in Springfield, numerous college students have been hospitalized or have reported being sexually assaulted after consuming the drink in recent weeks. KSMU’s Adam Hammons went to find out what these effects are and how it’s showing its face in Springfield.
Coming into the holiday season, shoppers across the Ozarks flock to Springfield to buy gifts for everyone on their lists. The stores get crowded, the streets get crowded, and the whole city is affected. KSMU’s Adam Hammons has some safety tips for drivers this holiday season.