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Articles in Pop Culture

Dan Duff

Each year at the Academy Awards, the losing nominees of the top five individual categories – best director, actor, actress, and supporting actor and actress – receive gift bags, each containing items such as electronic devices, vacation packages, clothing, and jewelry. They’re dubbed ‘swag bags that console Hollywood’s most glamorous losers.’ Sunday night at the Oscars, these losers will receive something different - a word portrait of Abraham Lincoln, courtesy of Springfield artist Dan Duff. KSMU’s Samuel Crowe spoke with Duff and has this story.


Catholics in Springfield, and around the world, woke up to hear the Monday morning announcement: Pope Benedict XVI plans to resign his papal office later this month. Some say they aren’t surprised by his decision. KSMU’s Rebekah Clark has more.

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Friday morning, all Missouri State University students and employees received an invitation to follow the university president, Clif Smart, on his newly-launched Twitter account. KSMU's Rebekah Clark looked into how high-profile officials are using social media platforms to connect, and also at the potential pitfalls of doing so.

Legendary singer Andy Williams passed away Tuesday night at his home in Branson. His death came after a long battle with bladder cancer, his family said through a statement sent out by public relations firm The Sheridan Company. Tributes are pouring in from politicians, entertainers, and many people from around America on facebook and Twitter. KSMU’s Rebekah Clark talks to three performing icons who worked closely with the Williams family.

Fabulous Fifties Exhibit, History Museum

From now until the end of October, the History Museum for Springfield-Greene County presents an exhibit called “The Fabulous Fifties.” The vintage display shows pictures of the Springfield area and displays artifacts straight from the 1950s, including pictures of local schools and the downtown Square. This exhibit is the first temporary display in the new downtown museum building. KSMU’s Rebekah Clark has more.

Springfield’s City Council made a few changes in May to the city’s indoor smoking law. Though the ban is still in place, the council unanimously voted to amend the act in order to allow indoor smoking in pre-existing bingo parlors, private clubs, cigar bars and retail tobacco stores. Seven locations were granted exemption in Springfield. KSMU’s Rebekah Clark visits with one facility owner, who says business has never been better since the exemption.

Piano Keyboard

Almost two hours northwest of Springfield sits the historic rural town of El Dorado Springs, with a population of just over 3,500 people.  A stone’s throw down Main Street, right off Highway 54, is First Baptist Church, which is home to the Lighthouse Children’s Theatre. This theatre program, started by local resident Lynne Hedrick, provides kids, ages three to seventeen, the opportunity to experience the fine arts through drama and music productions. And, according to Hedrick, the program has bonded the community together. KSMU’s Rebekah Clark has more.

“King of the High-Wire” Nik Wallenda Performing in Silver Dollar City

Just weeks after becoming the first person to ever tightrope directly over Niagara Falls, “King of the High-Wire” Nik Wallenda and his family made a stop in the Ozarks.  Wallenda, his wife, his three kids, and a few other circus artists are performing at Silver Dollar City until the beginning of August. In addition to walking over Niagara Falls, Wallenda has broken six other world records in tightrope walking. KSMU’s Rebekah Clark went to see the show and files this report.

This week, Springfield Public Schools announced that they plan to build new turf fields for four city high schools after receiving donations by 25 local business sponsors. The project is completely paid for by donations from private area investors, instead of district tax payer dollars. KSMU’s Rebekah Clark has more