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American Countryside contact information:
Andrew McCrea, American Countryside host
(816) 351-2165
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July 4, 2022
04Jul22 Liberty Bell
July 4th, 1776.  It’s Independence Day in the United States and one of the symbols of our freedom is the Liberty Bell.  But most folks don’t know the real story behind that bell…a bell that really was not famous at all until more than a half century after that famous July 4th in Philadelphia…

 

July 1, 2022
01Jul22 Gettysburg Battlefield 2
In the three days leading up to Indpendence Day 1863, Americans waged the greatest of battles against one another at Gettysburg  we taking a look back at the the people and sites that played at important role in the conflict.  We begin with the man who led the Union…a man most Americans cannot name…

June 30, 2022
30Jun22 Gettysburg Battlefield 1
Imagine hitting the age to retire and then deciding to volunteer for the army.  That is what John Burns did.  The military rejected him. but then the battle came to him…

June 29, 20022
29Jun22 Limpia Creek Hats 3
How much would you pay for a good cowboy hat?  I suppose it depends what you do for a living or if you think you need one – but here you can find some of the best hats in the nation and the starting price is usually around $500.  There’s usually at least a six month waiting list to get one of these hats…

June 28, 2022
28Jun22 Limpia Creek Hats 2
In 26 years of doing interviews for this show, John Davis may take the award for the most polite person I have every interviewed.  Sure most people are nice, but John begins each one of his answers with “Yes sir” and when my wife came along for the interview he took off his cowboy hat and nodded as she entered.  It’s that cowboy politeness that has perhaps set John’s work apart from others…

June 27, 2022
27Jun22 Limpia Creek Hats 1
Every cowboy needs a cowboy hat.  There are plenty of places you can buy a hat, but this small shop in west Texas has quite a story.  The man who operates it has customers from other continents who know the value of his work…

 

June 24, 2022
24Jun22 Museum of the Big Bend 3
In a moment I’ll take you to a small room, about the size of a large walk-in closet, that’s insured for 25 million dollars.  What’s in it?  Not jewels or gold or anything technological.  Rather it’s something rare, old and one of the few places in the world where the public can come and see it…

June 23, 2022
23Jun22 Museum of the Big Bend 2
As settlers moved from east to west across this continent they were looking for the best route to reach the Pacific coast.  Each option had its opportunities and challenges.  But this route showed promise.  It mostly avoided hostile tribes and treacherous mountains…

June 22, 2022
22Jun22 Museum of the Big Bend 1
The Big Bend region of Texas is a place where mountain chains meet but few people stayed.  The land was often a place not settled but rather traversed.  We know much about the land from 500 years ago because of the early Spanish who wrote down what they saw…

June 21, 2022
21Jun22 Kingman Arizona 2
Before Hoover Dam supplied electricity for this region of the southwest, this old powerhouse generated the electricity.  In fact, in was the energy from this building that allowed the huge dam to be built.  What happened to the old powerhouse?  It has a use today that has even more people stopping to see the wonder…

June 20, 2022
20Jun22 Kingman Arizona 1
Dinosaurs, caves and safari parks are the things summer road trips are made of.  Perhaps that’s why the combination still appears on an old section of route 66 – a must see for many tourists making their way across the state of Arizona.  This is the story behind those attractions and the smoke they blew into the Grand Canyon…

June 17, 2022
17Jun22 Elmer Long Bottle Tree
Elmer Long doesn’t manage a national forest, but it may be the most unique collection of trees in the nation.  He doesn’t have to plant them and wait for them to grow, he simply creates them – and his building materials are quite interesting.  In fact, it’s hard for him to get his work done these days for all of the people stopping by his front yard…

June 16, 2022
16Jun22 Duluth Aquarium 3
You may have seen folks on tv diving to explore old shipwrecks. Most of the time we may think of those dives taking place in warm Caribbean waters exploring a treasure ship. In a moment though, I’ll take you to a place some call the Disneyland of Diving – a place where the water is just above freezing but the sites you’ll see are truly amazing…

June 15, 2022
15Jun22 Duluth Aquarium 2
Lots of people love to go fishing, and even if you’re one of the folks that doesn’t care much for the pastime, what you’ll find in this body of water is certainly interesting.  It’s a place where cold water meets warmer water and a place where the fish rarely mix until the Spring each year…

June 14, 2022
14Jun22 Duluth Aquarium 1
One of the most recognizable structures in Duluth, and in the state of Minnesota for that matter, is the famous lift bridge.  It traverses the canal that connects Lake Superior with St. Louis Bay.  Along the shoreline you’ll find a place that will tell you all about the very unique and different bodies of water that canal connects…

June 13, 2022
13Jun22 Dylan Boyhood Home 2
The home at of 519 N 3rd Ave. East in Duluth, Minnesota looks much like the ones surrounding it.  In fact, you wouldn’t give it much notice if not for the small plaque there designating it as the boyhood home of a man that this city celebrates each Spring…

 

June 10, 2022
10Jun22 Dylan Boyhood Home 1
Robert Zimmerman perhaps sounds like a fairly common name.  This young man was born in Duluth, Minnesota, later moving to Hibbing and after high school, changed his name…and with that name change came a man you most likely know…

June 9, 2022
09Jun22 Joe Jeffrey 3
Every cattleman needs good fences to keep the herd from roaming free.  Joe Jeffrey has seen many miles of those fences and he began to notice something unusual.  People will use just about anything to keep the wire up and the cattle in.  Who knew it would end up becoming a new career for Joe…

June 8, 2022
08Jun22 Joe Jeffrey 2
You can plant a crop in the ground, but without water it will do very little.  The farmers of this part of Nebraska knew they had plenty of water available.  The problem in the early days was figuring out a way to move the moisture to where they needed it…

June 7, 2022
07Jun22 Joe Jeffrey 1
When the first residents of this area began building bridges to cross the nearby river, they found they often needed a span that stretched over a mile.  However, there were many time during the year when that mile wide riverbed was nearly dry.  It was all a part of the rugged early years here…

June 6, 2022
06Jun22 D-Day Memorial 2
It’s been several decades since allied troops landed at Normandy on D-day.  Over four thousand men gave their lives that day from many allied nations.  So why is the national D-Day memorial in this rural town of about 6000 people?

 

June 3, 2022
03Jun22 D-Day Memorial 1
Many of those who served in World War II actually joined the armed forces before the tradgedy at Pearl Harbor.  Some joined for adventure or a source of income during the lean Great Depression years.  The young men from this small farming community had their reasons too, but little did they know they’d make history…

June 2, 2022
02Jun22 Bob Garst D-Day Memorial
It’s estimated that over three million military men and women served in Vietnam and neighboring nations during the Vietnam War.  About 48,000 died during the years of 1955 to 1975.  Bob Garst was one of those who served…

June 1, 2022
01Jun22 Chain of Rocks Bridge
The development of not only cars, but roads themselves has improved safety and lessened highway fatalities.  But in the 1920s building a mile long bridge over the nation’s longest river and putting a curve in the middle of it, didn’t seem like a bad idea…

May 31, 2022
31May22 Cooperstown Doubleday Field
This town has under 2000 residents, yet it hosts thousands of visitors each year and is arguably the most important place to travel for fans of one sport.  So how did it become such a draw?  It all goes back to one man’s cow pasture

May 30, 2022
30May22 Santa Monica Pier 3
Dan Rice has traveled the length of Route 66 over two dozen times.  It might surprise people that his original inspiration for traversing the nearly 2500 miles was a character on the show Happy Days…..

 

May 27, 2022
27May22 Santa Monica Pier 2
Today this sign on Santa Monica Pier attracts a steady stream of travelers who pose by it.  Interestingly, it’s a replica of a sign that disappeared over a half century ago, but a sign that is the destination for motorists from the U.S. and around the globe……

May 26, 2022
26May22 Santa Monica Pier 1
In 1926 Route 66 ended at the corner of 7th and Broadway in downtown Los Angles, California.  Today, most people will tell you route 66 ends at Santa Monica pier.  Neither of those answers may be officially correct though.  So why’s it matter?

May 25, 2022
25May22 Le Seur Minnesota Nature Center
We may think of a nature center as a place with an interpretive building and a few wooded acres where one can hike.  So when you come to the nature center here near Le Seur, Minnesota, you may be surprised that you’ll find, not one, but two farmsteads that have been transformed into a place to enjoy and learn about past and present of the place

May 24, 2022
24May22 Mayo & the Green Giant 2
Some people have a green thumb, and it certainly seemed the farmers in southern Minnesota were experts at growing peas.  Large beautiful peas.  Peas so large and so good that they really needed to be differentiated from all others.  How did they do it?

May 23, 2022
23May22 Mayo & the Green Giant 1
In Le Suer, Minnesota you’ll find what appears to be a modest old home sitting on a lot in front of a grain elevator.  Unless you read the sign you might not know who lived there.  What makes the place truly special is the identity of not just one, but two families who’s work you’ve certainly heard of…

 

May 20, 2022
20May22 WW Mayo House 3
In August of 1883 a tornado hit southeastern Minnesota.  It was a devastating event that caused a lot of damage to people and property.  Out of that tragedy though a doctor and some nuns decided to work together to begin caring for those in need.  What resulted is a place still very much a part of our world today…

May 19, 2022
19May22 WW Mayo House 2
One of this medical doctors first patients when he came to town was a horse.  He was glad to treat the horse, but he was there to help people.  In time, the chance to work with humans rather than horse did occur and he gained a good reputation – a reputation that lives on today…

May 18, 2022
18May22 WW Mayo House 1
He was a frontier doctor that found himself in the middle of the Dakota War.  His work in that war led him to take a medical position with the army during the U.S. Civil War.  And from there, well, you know this doctor, you perhaps just didn’t know the beginning to his story…

May 17, 2022
17May22 Brooks Dairy Farm 2
Most corn farmers have a date they would like to have all of their seed planted.  Of course the weather has a big impact on whether that happens or not.  But in a moment I’ll take you to a farm where they plant corn on May 5th every single year no matter the weather…

May 16, 2022
16May22 Brooks Dairy Farm 1
Many farms have a long legacy of working the land.  Just outside Waupaca, Wisconsin you can find a dairy that traces its history to the days before the Civil War.  Part of that history is a unique item that is passed down from each generation as they begin to manage the operation…

 

May 13, 2022
13May22 Camp Algona Iowa 2
It’s hard to imagine being held as a prisoner of war and then, after the war, immigrating to the country that held you captive.  That’s exactly what happened on many occasions during WW II and today we go to one of the towns familiar with that story…

May 12, 2022
12May22 Camp Algona Iowa 1
Over the years you’ve heard us feature some towns in the heartland of America that served as POW camps during WW II.  Today we head to north central IA where a group of folks keep alive the story of the prisoners, guards and the farm families were many of those POWs worked…

May 11, 2022
11May22 KMA Radio History
Imagine hosting a breakfast so large that you needed to buy pancake flour by the boxcar.  That’s exactly what happened here.  So why was this small town feeding such large crowds and attracting some of the biggest names in entertainment?

May 10, 2022
10May22 Chillicothe Sliced Bread 2
Sliced bread was born, but there’s much more to this story, including how the new product was received and where we came up with that phrase that something is the best thing since sliced bread…

May 9, 2022
09May22 Chillicothe Sliced Bread 1
Go down a supermarket aisle and you can find lots of different types of bread.  White bread, wheat, honey oat, the list goes on and on.  But just about every loaf you’ll find in those aisles has one thing in common that traces its roots back to a man working in Chillicothe, Missouri…

 

May 6, 2022
06May22 Holbrook Arizona 2
Sometimes movies do more than just bring in dollars at the box office.  They occasionally have an impact on the place where they were filmed.  In a sense, this movie set stretched nearly 2500 miles and today the backdrop of that animated movie is still brining people from around the world to places some thought dead…

May 5, 2022
05May22 Holbrook Arizona 1
There are many towns in the western U.S. that had rough and tumble beginnings.  They are places where it was sometimes difficult to determine exactly who was in charge of peace and justice.  So it shouldn’t be surprising that one town went so far as to send out invitations to a hanging…

May 4, 2022
04May22 Chilicothe T-Mobile Hometown Grant
On the north side of the square in Chillicothe, MO you’ll find a small park where some buildings once stood.  It’s called Silver Moon Plaza.  Those in the area know the significance of the name and in a moment you’ll hear about a major grant program that’s helping this place and could just help your hometown too…

May 3, 2022
03May22 Fort Riley Kansas 2
There is a lot of important military artifacts in this museum and Dr. Robert Smith can tell you why each is very important to the development of the American military.  However, there is one interesting exhibit that seems to draw a lot of stares.  If you’ve never seen a horse wearing a gas mask, join us on this interesting look at the U.S. Cavalry…

May 2, 2022
02May22 Fort Riley Kansas 1
If you drive by Junction City, Kansas on Interstate 70 you’ll see the airfield and buildings related to one of the county’s military bases.  But how and why did such an important fort get established here?

 

April 29, 2022
29Apr22 Pima Air and Space Museum 3
Imagine flying a plane called the “SuperGuppy.”  There are only two in existence and one is here for the world to see.  As the name implies, it’s not your average aircraft.  It’s a plane that has a 46 foot bulge in the middle…

April 28, 2022
28Apr22 Pima Air and Space Museum 2
The President of the United States flies in Air Force One…and to some extent they can customize the ride to their preferences.  That was the case for one president who had an unusual request when he began flying this version of the president’s plane…

April 27, 2022
27Apr22 Pima Air and Space Museum 1
In Tucson, Arizona you’ll find a place dubbed “the boneyard.”  It’s a military facility that scraps old airplanes.    Across the street from that airbase though is a place that capitalizes, in a sense, on the proximity to the place where many planes go on their last flight….

April 26, 2022
26Apr22 Wahoo Nebraska 2
It’s certainly one of the more unique names for a town in the country.   Interestingly, no one knows for sure how it got its title – but one thing is sure, the town receives plenty of attention.  This is the story of that place at the famous citizens who hail from there…

April 25, 2022
25Apr22 Wahoo Nebraska 1
Lots of people have nicknames.  This baseball hall of famer was so proud of his hometown, they inserted it into his name on his plaque in Cooperstown.  This is the story of that record holder and the interesting town name from where he hailed…

 

April 22, 2022
22Apr22 Redwood National Park 2
Normally the taller a tree grows, the deeper its roots sink into the ground.  But these trees seem to do just the opposite.  Their size would lead you to believe they must have equally large roots to hold them in place, however, they’ve developed a way to not only stay in the ground but also live some of the longest lives of any tree on the planet

April 21, 2022
21Apr22 Redwood National Park 1
It’s one of the smallest seeds – in fact, it’s just about the size of a tomato seed.  However, what grows from this seed is much different than any tomato.  In fact, most of us are so amazed by what that seed can become, we will drive hundreds of miles just to see it

April 20, 2022
20Apr22 Perry Iowa 100 Plus 2
Four times each year a group of people in Perry, Iowa are writing $100 checks to an important local cause of their choosing.  They don’t seek personal accolades for their donation, they simply meet as a group and vote on a different cause to support each meeting.  It’s an idea that makes quite an impact…

April 19, 2022
19Apr22 Perry Iowa 100 Plus 1
It’s called One Hundred Plus for Perry.  Although local residents can’t take credit for the idea, they adapted in from other towns to create a way that thousands of dollars can be directed to local causes four times per year.

April 18, 2022
18Apr22 Grotto of the Redemption 2
It took 80 years to build this structure in West Bend, IA and today it is valued in the millions of dollars.  However, it was totally built on donations and was not constructed to be a tourist attraction.  It’s a place where people from around the world come to visit, worship and contemplate the work of God

 

April 15, 2022
15Apr22 Grotto of the Redemption 1
It is a story fitting for the message of Good Friday – the story of a priest who recovered from a grave illness and began to construct a magnificent place to glorify God.  This is the story of the masterpiece which took him 42 years to build…

April 14, 2022
14Apr22 Big Bend River Guide 3
It was a land full of tall grass – a place perfect to graze cattle and set up a ranch.  And that’s exactly what many did.  But today this place looks much different that the accounts of the first visitors, yet it attracts thousands of people each year…

April 13, 2022
13Apr22 Big Bend River Guide 2
If I told you there were people wading the Rio Grande River crossing the border, you might think they were crossing illegally.  Here you can was the river or take a rowboat and it’s perfectly legal because it’s one of the most unique border checkpoints on the country’s southern border…

April 12, 2022
12Apr22 Big Bend River Guide 1
Terry lives in one of the most remote U.S. towns in the lower 48 states.  He didn’t grow up here, but he loves this place, and today it’s a location attracting more folks all the time…

April 11, 2022
11Apr22 Herman Missouri Wurst House 3
Mike would not consider himself a professor, but a trip to this town will find him teaching classes about something he’s been doing just about his entire life.  It’s a story of the farm meting the classroom…

 

April 8, 2022
08Apr22 Herman Missouri Wurst House 2
Vending machines have been around for decades, so doing a show about such a machine seems to be nothing extraordinary.  But a trip to this town will find people constantly snapping pictures of Mike’s vending machine…

April 7, 2022
07Apr22 Herman Missouri Wurst House 1
Normally having the worst house in town would not be a good thing.  But when you spell “Worst” w-u-r-s-t, well now you have a place everyone wants to be…

April 6, 2022
06Apr22 Herman Missouri Stone Hill 4
John’s father was asked to take a risk free chance on what could be the dream of a lifetime.  That small farmer took the opportunity and today a well-known agricultural enterprise continues its proud history from well over a century ago…

April 5, 2022
05Apr22 Herman Missouri Stone Hill 3
It was beautiful artwork that was part of the underground cellars here at Stone Hill winery in Herman, Missouri.  But today there is a mystery.  While you can still tour those cavernous cellars that are over a century old and still in use, they are still searching for what left during prohibition…

April 4, 2022
04Apr22 Herman Missouri Stone Hill 2
We know that France is known for its vineyards but many of us don’t know that in the mid 1800s an unknown culprit put the future of those grapes in serious jeopardy. It was some folks from Missouri who figured out the mystery and saved the industry…

 

April 1, 2022
01Apr22 Herman Missouri Stone Hill 1
Mention the town of Hermann, Missouri and anyone who has heard of it will immediately know it’s known for this product.  It’s a crop that dates to the founding of this town…

March 31, 2022
31Mar22 Hot Air Balloon Pilot 2
Imagine a competition where you fly a hot air balloon equipped with survival gear over snow capped mountains in the dead of winter.  Perhaps it doesn’t sound like the smartest event for one to jump into, but that’s what today’s guest did…

March 30, 2022
30Mar22 Hot Air Balloon Pilot 1
What’s seven stories high and can hold two million light bulbs.  It may sound like the set up for a joke…but it’s a real part of Cheri White’s life…

March 29, 2022
29Mar22 Volstead Act Granite Falls 2
Just about all of us have heard of farm cooperatives and no doubt, many of you listening to this use one or are a member of one or more.  Today we look back to a man who had that vision to help bring people together as he saw that need in his own small town…

March 28, 2022
28Mar22 Volstead Act Granite Falls 1
If you know American history the name Andrew Volstead may ring a bell.  This US Representative from small town Minnesota has his name on two important pieces of legislation and there’s a good chance you know them both – but had perhaps forgotten…

 

March 25, 2022
25Mar22 Grand Falls Minnesota Arts 2
Drive into Granite Falls, Minnesota and you’ll soon see that this small town looks a little different than many.  You can tell by looking at the streets, the benches and even some of the walls in town. It’s a grassroots effort that has made a big difference here…

March 24, 2022
24Mar22 Grand Falls Minnesota Arts 1
In small towns in might be easy to say that things like the arts – galleries, music festivals, sculptors and such are just found in big cities that can support them.  But trip here will upend that notion and show you how a small town or city is probably missing out if it’s not considering the arts as a way to revitalize the place…

March 23, 2022
23Mar22 Landmark Inn
Gary says people should be wary of realtors who say, “Just make a bid on it.”  If you do make a bid – even a low bid – you might just wind up with it.  Gary’s bid was the winner, but he had no idea what to do with his purchase.

March 22, 2022
22Mar22 Big Ben the Steer 2
He is the biggest steer on record – a beef that was over 16 feet in length and weighed well over two tons.  In fact, he was such a site to see, the city of Kokomo, Indiana made sure you can still see him today…

March 21, 2022
21Mar22 Big Ben the Steer 1
Beef producers are usually looking for an efficient, high quality steer to feed.  Perhaps there was none better than Ben, for Ben grew faster than any calf anyone had ever seen…

 

March 18, 2022
18Mar22 Belmont State Park
In the short stretch of the Mississippi River where Missouri borders Kentucky is a spot where Civil War strategy was so important, one side stretched a chain across the mighty river to stop all the boats.  So how did the plan work?

March 17, 2022
17Mar22 Civil War Naval Museum 2
Imagine boys 11 to 15 years of age going to war.  It was reality for these young men and the conditions in which they served were the equivalent of riding inside a floating oven…

March 16, 2022
16Mar22 Civil War Naval Museum 1
Perhaps you’ve heard of the story of the Monitor and Merramack…the first two ironclad ships to do battle in the Civil War…but in a moment you’ll hear a much bigger story of the Civil War navy and the 450 pound cannonballs that were needed to even the match…

March 15, 2022
15Mar22 Copper Queen Mine
You’ll find plenty of wild mining stories in southern Arizona.  One of the biggest tales includes a mine where you can still ride the ore cars today…

March 14, 2022
14Mar22 Oklahoma State Capitol 3
This state’s government was ready to move out of its temporary home in a downtown hotel.  However, the route to building a grand and permanent capitol building still had several hurdles…including a stockyards and a World War…

 

March 11, 2022
11Mar22 Oklahoma State Capitol 2
It’s said, “home is where the heart is.”  And in this state it can be said, “The capitol is where the governor decides to put a handmade sign over the door.”  Today we head to the hotel room that one governor proclaimed as the seat of government…

March 10, 2022
10Mar22 Oklahoma State Capitol 1
Voters often face multiple choices when electing candidates for office.  But the residents of this state had a most unique multiple choice question to decide.  Which of the following cities should become the capital of the state?

March 9, 2022
09Mar22 Lake Superior Railroad Museum 3
Some people will go to great lengths to create something luxurious.  But have you ever heard of someone spending an entire year doing the interior painting for something the size of a large room, but only using turkey feathers as the paint brush?

March 8, 2022
08Mar22 Lake Superior Railroad Museum 2
What is the most powerful steam locomotive in U.S. history?  We may say the Big Boy and that answer would get you very close.  But if you want to know and see the correct answer, you can come here…

March 7, 2022
07Mar22 Lake Superior Railroad Museum 1
Many towns and cities have restored their old rail depots.  That’s the case in Duluth, Minnesota and the building is quite impressive in its own right.  Step inside and head down to the tracks you’ll find something world class…

 

March 4, 2022
04Mar22 Butte Montana Speakeasy 2
Today we head undergound…both literally and figuratively as we uncover some of this city’s history and dig up some of its interesting stories during the prohibition era…

March 3, 2022
03Mar22 Butte Montana Speakeasy 1
Beginning in 1920, the 18th Amendment made the manufacture and consumption of alcohol illegal until it was repealed in 1933.  During that time something known as a speakeasy became common place…a secret location to get a drink…we head underground…

March 2, 2022
02Mar22 Last Indian Raid
Americans are familiar with the fate of Custer and his men at the Little Big Horn.  It was far from the last conflict between tribes and settlers on the high plains.  Today we head to northwestern Kansas…

March 1, 2022
01Mar22 Bald Eagles 2
The Dickerson Park Zoo in Springfield, MO is a great place to come and learn about a variety of animals.  One of the very important and challenging tasks the staff veterinarian has here though is caring for raptors that are in danger…

February 28, 2022
28Feb22 Bald Eagles 1
When I was a kid it was a big deal to see a bald eagle in the wild.  In fact, I don’t think I ever saw one until I was in my high school years or beyond.  Today the populations have risen but there are still challenges…

 

February 25, 2022
25Feb22 FFA History 2
You have to give Henry Groseclose a lot of credit.  Not only did he use his hospital stay to write the entire constitution, bylaws and ceremonies for a national organization, but when he returned home he even shot and stuffed an owl for them…

February 24, 2022
24Feb22 FFA History 1
The week of George Washington’s birthday is annually celebrated as National FFA week.  Today we trace the history of the Future Farmers to a small oak table in a classroom on the campus of Virginia Tech university…

February 23, 2022
23Feb22 Stockton Jailhouse Rock 2
Elvis once sang about the jailhouse rock.  In fact, many of us know that tune decades after it was first recorded.  Who knew it would also become a catchy title for some important work in the state of Missouri…

February 22, 2022
22Feb22 Stockton Jailhouse Rock 1
Randy Hayward says he’s always tried to follow what God wanted him to do with his life.  But what happened about three decades ago is still fresh in his mind.  It’s seemed God was telling him to go visit a place that seemed a world away from anything he knew…

February 21, 2022
21Feb22 Stockton Missouri 2
There were many reason the first pioneers selected specific spots to begin town and cities.  It’s easy to find the main reason in Stockton, Missouri – it’s still underneath this town…

 

February 18, 2022
18Feb22 Stockton Missouri 1
Today we say hello to our listeners on KYOO in Bolivar, Missouri.  Just up the road in Stockton, town residents once prepared to defend their city from raiders sweeping in to do harm to life and property…

February 17, 2022
17Feb22 Las Vegas Weddings 2
February is of course the month noted for love…it’s the month we celebrate Valentine’s Day.  There are many weddings that take place during the week of Valentine’s and today we head to a chapel that set a wedding record one February…

February 16, 2022
16Feb22 Las Vegas Weddings 1
This county performs more weddings than any other in the nation.  You probably have a good idea where that county might be located, but do you know why it became known as the place to tie the knot?

February 15, 2022
15Feb22 Clarksville Customs House
The local newspaper originally described it as “an eyesore and public laughing stock.”  Quite a tagline for a building that became one of the most popular and most photographed places in this state.  Where is it and what is it?

February 14, 2022
14Feb22 White Cloud Past and Future
Many of us like to reminisce about the way things once were.  They do that a bit in White Cloud, Kansas, but one difference is, those memories are being brought back to life…

 

February 11, 2022
11Feb22 White Cloud Piggy Bank 2
Maybe you had a piggy bank as a child, or perhaps you still do.  In a moment I’ll take you to the place  where the piggy bank was born.  It all began with a boy, a pig and an important need in the world…

February 10, 2022
10Feb22 White Cloud Piggy Bank 1
We all have causes that are close to our heart – organizations or individuals that we donate to in order to help a need in our community or world.  So, on the surface, it wasn’t unusual that young Wilbur wanted to help his mom raise some money for kids who needed help.  However, his story from over a century ago is one that lives on today…

February 9, 2022
09Feb22 White Cloud Kansas
When you drive into White Cloud, Kansas, along the banks of the Missouri River, some people will see a ghost town.  Others will see a town that is springing back to life.  Perhaps both are true at the same time and if you ask Deb Bryan about what’s taking place here, she’ll tell you her personal story of helping restore a place to vibrancy…

February 8, 2022
08Feb22 Patrick Henry 2
It may be one of the most famous speeches ever delivered.  Even if you know nothing else of about the life of patriot Patrick Henry you probably remember his words: “Give Me Liberty or Give me Death”…

February 7, 2022
07Feb22 Patrick Henry 1
His leadership skills rivaled those of Washington and Jefferson…and his speaking skills were superior…yet when you mention his home of Red Hill…you probably have no idea who he is.  That’s because he was on the move much more than the famous residents of Mt. Vernon and Monticello…

 

February 4, 2022
04Feb22 Fort Kent Maine 2
Some people like the sun, others like the snow and some need a little of both.  But when you live in Ft. Kent, Maine you better like blizzards and bitter cold…because you’ll see plenty of it…

February 3, 2022
03Feb22 Fort Kent Maine 1
Just as Route 66 is one of the most famous highways in American, this road running up and down the eastern seaboard, is a road with special ties as well.  In a moment we’ll head to the end of Route U.S. 1, or is it the beginning?

February 2, 2022
02Feb22 Faribault State Bank 2
I had heard stories about the State Bank of Faribault.  Sure you can deposit money there and get loans…but it’s everything else that no other bank has.  Grizzly bear, deer, museum items AND a beer bottling line that actually sends bottles down the track near where you visit with the tellers…

February 1, 2022
01Feb22 Faribault State Bank 1
Today we welcome our new listeners on the Mighty 920, KDHL in Faribault, Minnesota.  Across from the radio station you’ll find a bank that attracts some people just to see the interesting items inside – including something called “The Might Faribault” that helped do work on the farm before the days of tractors…

January 31, 2022
31Jan22 Fort Defiance
Most cities don’t renovate a Civil War fort that never fired a shot.  Then again, one could make the case that  because the fort never fired a shot, there was as a city left to renovate it…

 

January 28, 2022
28Jan22 Henry Wallace
This father and son pair both served as the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.  The son even became vice president of the United States and made an unsuccessful bid for president.  Although it’s been over a half century since either was in office, their work can still be seen today…

January 27, 2022
27Jan22 Jesse James Train Robbery
Great train robberies are the stuff of wild west movies.  In real life though, the first such event occurred here.  Today we travel to the spot were an infamous gang pulled the rails and waited for a big pay day…

January 26, 2022
26Jan22 Iowa Aviation Museum 3
For the past few days we’ve taken a look back at a stop I made in Greenfield, Iowa, home to the Iowa Aviation Museum.  You probably never realized how many aviation firsts are tied to Iowa, including a car company that decided to try its hand at making airplanes.  Its unique vision is preserved here…

January 25, 2022
25Jan22 Iowa Aviation Museum 2
Charles Lindbergh was the first person to fly an airplane across the Atlantic Ocean.  But lost in our history books in the name of a man who would most likely have beaten Lindbergh to the prize, if not for a court case that kept his plane from taking off from the very same airport…

January 24, 2022
24Jan22 Iowa Aviation Museum 1
Today, aircraft carriers and the planes they transport play a vital role in country’s military might.  However, have you ever given any thought to the first brave soul that attempted to take off and land a plane aboard a boat?  It takes a courageous or perhaps very crazy individual to try it…

 

January 21, 2022
21Jan22 Mark Hall Patton
It was Ray’s first time in the Oval Office and he did not want to mess up his presentation.  He thought all was going well until the president made a move that seemed to indicate the meeting was coming to a swift end…

January 20, 2022
20Jan22 Ray Starling 3
It was Ray’s first time in the Oval Office and he did not want to mess up his presentation.  He thought all was going well until the president made a move that seemed to indicate the meeting was coming to a swift end…

January 19, 2022
19Jan22 Ray Starling 2
During the middle of the farm crisis in the 1980s, those in agriculture lobbied to have a full time staff member to advise the president of the United States on agriculture issues.  It was part of the farm bill, but that one measure almost caused the collapse of the entire legislation…

January 18, 2022
18Jan22 Ray Starling 1
Ray was expecting a call from a guy trying to sell him some firewood.  When an unknown number popped up on his cell phone he thought he’d just call back later as he was busy at the time.  Turns out someone else was calling.  It was the White House…

January 17, 2022
17Jan22 Las Vegas Endurance Plane 2
If you’ve ever flown into the Las Vegas airport, you may have noticed a colorful Cessna airplane hanging from the ceiling over the baggage claim area.  Most people think it’s just an interesting prop.  However it’s actually a world record holder, for no other manned airplane has ever remained aloft for more continuous days that this one…

 

January 14, 2022
14Jan22 Las Vegas Endurance Plane 1
What’s the longest time a plane has stayed in the air without landing and with the same two men at the controls?  Would you believe the record is over two months in a small Cesna aircraft…

January 13, 2022
13Jan22 Faribault Woollen Mill 3
There are only two vertical woolen mills remaining in the U.S.  One has been in this town since the days just after the Civil War.  Chances are, if you have one of their blankets you’ve kept it – they tend to last a lifetime and the tag on the throw has built a brand…

January 12, 2022
12Jan22 Faribault Woollen Mill 2
Paul Mooty says if he drove his own car one day back in 2011 down to Faribault, Minnesota, he might not be the owner of one of the town’s century old businesses.  That’s because five minutes into his tour he already knew he was not interested in the place, but since he road with someone else he could not leave.  And because he stayed, this mill stayed put as well…

January 11, 2022
11Jan22 Faribault Woollen Mill 1
Imagine a time when a horse walked a treadmill to help power the machines that produced wool blankets for early settlers in the days just after the Civil War.  This company traces its roots to that horse named Jenny and they still have the harness to prove it…

January 10, 2022
10Jan22 Chattanooga Battlefield 2
Imagine being a slave at the beginning of the Civil War only later to have an opportunity to join the Union army and fight back at those who enslaved you. It is here that former slaves joined men from the Union army to wage war in some of the most difficult terrain of the Civil War…

 

January 7, 2022
07Jan22 Chattanooga Battlefield 1
Today it is a beautiful city perched along the hills and rivers of southeastern TN. But during the Civil War, it was the focal point of intense fighting…

January 6, 2022
06Jan22 Luna Cafe 2022
In front of the Luna Café, on old route 66 near Mitchell, Illinois, you’ll find a beautifully restored neon sign…the bright lights include a drinking glass with a red cherry that lights up  it was a beacon for infamous characters and that lit cherry had extra meaning as well…

January 5, 2022
05Jan22 Turkey Tracks 2022
There is definitely an art to tracking and calling a wild turkey.  Jerry Law had no trouble tracking this turkey.   That’s because the turkey’s tracks have been here for nearly a century now.  In a moment we visit those old turkey tracks and tell you why Jerry worked so hard to mark the spot so others could see them…

January 4, 2022
04Jan22 Turpentine Wildlife Refuge 2
Lots of people come to Eureka Springs, Arkansas every year to enjoy the Ozark setting and attractions.  One of the places that some might see if a farm of sorts that may seem out-of-place.  Rather than raising cattle, hogs or chickens, this farm is home to tigers, lions, bears and more.  It’s mission is one that is of critical importance…

January 3, 2022
03Jan22 Turpentine Wildlife Refuge 1
Occasionally you hear of a large truckload of cattle or hogs that is stranded on the highway and other trucks must come to offload those animals to get them feed and water.  Now imagine that truckload of animals is a trailer full of tigers…

 

December 31, 2021
31Dec21 Best of 2021 Macomb Illinois Monopoly
Charles Darrow had a great new board game he sold to Parker Brothers – Monopoly.  The only problem was, Charles didn’t invent the game.  Rather it was a lady from MaComb, Illinois who not only created it, but held a patent on it.  So what happened when she went to Parker Brothers?

December 30, 2021
30Dec21 Best of 2021 Evel Knievel Museum
There was no stunt he wouldn’t consider.  And because of his daredevil nature, some have called him the first, real-life superhero.  After all, he was the first to have his own action figure, just like superman and batman…

December 29, 2021
29Dec21 Best of 2021 Boise City Bombing
They made a mistake worthy of a court martial.  A bombing crew made a wrong turn and bombed their own country’s residents.  However, a mistake that could have ruined the careers of those aboard and cost lives on the ground actually challenged the team to become the best that ever flew…

December 28, 2021
28Dec21 Best of 2021 Bob Slater
It’s a big deal to meet the president of the United States.  Some people will do just about anything to travel to a place where they might get to shake the president’s hand.  That’s what Bob did.  He even hitchhiked to get there.  But what happened next was quite unexpected…

December 27, 2021
27Dec21 Best of 2021 Ben Hur
Some people fix up their office with pictures and knickknacks that remind them of their favorite things in life.  This man went a step further.  He made sure his office allowed him to do the thing he most enjoyed in life at the same time – fishing…

 

 

December 24, 2021
24Dec21 Algona Nativity 2
In Algona, Iowa there is a nativity scene that has been on display for over 75 years.  It was a gift from prisoners far from home, who were about to leave the friends they had made in a foreign country…

December 23, 2021
23Dec21 Algona Nativity 1
During the advent season, many families and churches will set up Nativity scenes.  The figures remind us of the birth of Jesus.  But here, the Nativity scene is always set up, for it is by far too large to ever be taken down…

December 22, 2021
22Dec21 Faribault Christmas Tree 2
Jerry Lageson is very well known for what he does every Christmas.  He never set out to be popular or draw attention to himself, but somewhere along the way, what is in his yard became an inspiration for countless travelers each season…

December 21, 2021
21Dec21 Faribault Christmas Tree 1
On the surface it would seem Jerry has an easy Christmas lighting situation.  He puts lights on just one tree in his yard each year.  But oh, if you’ve see that tree along Interstate 35, you know Jerry really takes time to make it look just right, and everyone remembers it…

December 20, 2021
20Dec21 LeRoy Keyes
In1968, O.J Simpson won the Heisman Trophy…but it was this man who was runner-up in the Heisman balloting that year.  He passed from cancer earlier this year but I thought it was fitting to back are recall his inspiring story – one still remembered in the Hoosier state…

 

December 17, 2021
17Dec21 Muscatine Car Dealer
For many years Marvin Kreiger operated a car dealership in Muscatine, Iowa. Today, we take a look back at a successful business…but also a time when it was not so easy to sell a car in this town…especially if you had this specific model on your lot…

December 16, 2021
16Dec21 Muscatine Quack Hospital
We appreciate the many stations that air our broadcast each day, but a century ago there was a station with a signal mightier than any in the country.  It was KTNT that flaunted the law and blasted their signal to most of the country touting a cure for a deadly disease.

December 15, 2021
15Dec21 Muscatine Pearl Buttons
There’s plenty of fertile farmland along the Mississippi River here.  But a century ago, this city was known for something else. It was not the land along the river, but something from the river that was putting the town on the map…

December 14, 2021
14Dec21 Blue Springs Heritage Center 2
Natural springs are a thing of beauty and also of mystery.  Attempts to find the source of this spring have led divers to incredible depths with few answers.  But one of the most interesting stories about this Arkansas spring is a connection with Alaska…

December 13, 2021
13Dec21 Blue Springs Heritage Center 1
Just outside of Eureka Springs, Arkansas you will find one of the largest natural springs in the area.  It’s captivating blue waters have been a place people have been coming for a centuries.  It’s a place John and his family know well….

 

December 10, 2021
10Dec21 American Ninja Warrior 2
We never give it a thought, but most of us perform our jobs with our feet on the ground.  Even if you fly airplanes, your feet are still on the floor of the airplane.  But now imagine a career in which your feet are almost always dangling in mid air and your strength to hold on will determine your success of failure…

December 9, 2021
09Dec21 American Ninja Warrior 1
In his early 20s Alex Weber realized that he was some sort of comedic sports actor.  Perhaps he wondered if the combination of those skills was really anything that one could turn into a career.  Then a most intriguing job offer came his way…

December 8, 2021
08Dec21 Pearl Harbor Sterling Cole 3
Sterling Cale acted with bravery and courage during the attack on Pearl Harbor.  Why then was he going to be court martialed.  He couldn’t believe what he was hearing…

December 7, 2021
07Dec21 Pearl Harbor Sterling Cole 2
He was an eye witness to history, a man who was in the waters of Pearl Harbor during and after the Japanese attack, doing his part to fight back and preserve life.  We look back at his heroic story…

December 6, 2021
06Dec21 Pearl Harbor Sterling Cole 1
He was a farm boy from Illinois who thought he’d received the prime spot for anyone to serve in the military.  On December 7th, 1941, he found himself surrounded by a day that will live in infamy…

 

December 3, 2021
03Dec21 Burnham Phillipine Hostages 4
Today’s story is about Thanksgiving.  Yes, it does involve the holiday, but in a much different way.  It’s the story of hostages celebrating a meager meal in the jungle and somehow keeping their faith even when events made it hard to simply survive…

December 2, 2021
02Dec21 Burnham Phillipine Hostages 3
In the Spring of 2001 several people were taken hostage in the Philippines by terrorist and held for over a year.  Two of those held against their will were Martin and Gracia Burnham.  We look back twenty years to an event that got the attention of the world

December 1, 2021
01Dec21 Burnham Phillipine Hostages 2
For a time the Burnham family few crop dusting jobs in western Nebraska.  Perhaps it was good training for flights they would someday be making in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.  But the most dangerous part of the mission would be something they encountered on the ground…

November 30, 2021
30Nov21 Burnham Phillipine Hostages 1
It was a flight not for the faint of heart – flying small planes in and out of mountainous jungles.  But it was a life that Martin Burnham grew up with and a life he wanted to live as an adult…

November 29, 2021
29Nov21 Lanesboro MN History Alive
Jane loved history and the performing arts and when she found herself in this town of under 1000 people she had an idea of how the two might be combined for a unique production that today draws many here to see it…

 

November 26, 2021
26Nov21 Plymouth Plantation
We associate the first Thanksgiving with the Native American and Pilgrims living in Plymouth Colony.  However, we know very little about that event.  Today we head to Plymouth Plantation and look back about 400 years to a meal that we still celebrate…

November 25, 2021
25Nov21 Plymouth Rock
Each Thanksgiving we are likely to remember the Pilgrims who landed at Plymouth Rock.  But is that rock really the spot they disembarked and eventually celebrated a meal we trace to our holiday?  We’ll go rock hunting…

November 24, 2021
24Nov21 Hannibal Riverboat 3
When the nation was founded, waterways were the interstate highways of the day.  Today those rivers can still move a lot of cargo, but most of us don’t see it on the water unless we happen to be passing over a major bridge.  Today we head out on the river to see just how much those barges can move…

November 23, 2021
23Nov21 Hannibal Riverboat 2
Who is Mark Twain?  Perhaps the better question is “What is Mark Twain?”  Knowing what mark twain is will help you better understand who the man with the pen name Mark Twain really is.  This is the story of a name with an important meaning..

November 22, 2021
22Nov21 Hannibal Riverboat 1
Steve Terry grew up along the Mississippi River but he perhaps never imagined he would spend most of his career working on that river.  But a teenage job aboard a riverboat changed his ideas about what he wanted to do in life…

 

 

November 19, 2021
19Nov21 Waldo Missouri 1
When Union and Confederate sympathizers threatened to take this bankers money, he did something quite unique – he dressed as a woman and began transporting the cash underneath his skirt to secret locations where it could be safely kept until the end of the war…

November 18, 2021
18Nov21 Waldo Missouri 1
You may remember the popular Where’s Waldo books that had kids searching for a man hidden in pictures.  Today we search for Waldo ourselves – a real man with links to the presidency as well as the Midwest…

November 17, 2021
17Nov21 Lanesboro MN Stone Mill Hotel 2
Most farming towns have a least one feed mill and Lanesboro, Minnesota is no exception.  However, one of those feed mills looks a bit different on the inside.  For while the bins and augers are still here, there are people sleeping around all of that equipment…

November 16, 2021
16Nov21 Lanesboro MN Stone Mill Hotel 1
In southeastern Minnesota you’ll find a rolling landscape known as the Driftless area, and within that region there’s a town named Lanesboro that was established in the mid 1800s to draw east coast tourists.  The dream of a luring visitors did come true, but it took over a century…

November 15, 2021
15Nov21 Dayton Carillon Historical Park
If you’re over 40 years old, you probably remember aluminum cans that had the old pull off tabs.  Today of course we have pop tops on virtually every beverage can in the world.  May not seem like a big deal…but it adds up over time…

 

 

November 12, 2021
12Nov21 Wright Brothers Flyer
The Wright Brothers first took flight in 1903 and that plane is in the Smithsonian.  But the brothers said there was a much more important flight than that first one…and that plane is here…

November 11, 2021
11Nov21 Father John Cummings 2
Normally a priest’s words are to inspire the local congregation.  In this case, the priest’s words sent him to jail and then to the U.S. Supreme Court to decide his case.  The issue wasn’t so much about what the priest said, but rather what he refused to say.  This is the story of the ruling on a small town priest who wound up in the highest court in the land…

November 10, 2021
10Nov21 Father John Cummings 1
For many folks it seemed to be a good idea.  Have people take an oath of allegiance to the nation.  However, one man objected – someone who might have seemed an unlikely man to break the law and spend a long period of time in jail for doing so…

November 9, 2021
09Nov21 John Brooks Henderson 2
On a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River you’ll find a bust of a U.S. Senator who authored one of the most important pieces of our U.S. Constitution.  In fact, the plaque below his statue reminds us of the very words he wrote – words that govern us today…

November 8, 2021
08Nov21 John Brooks Henderson 1
There’s a good chance you’ve not heard of Senator John Brooks Henderson.  On the surface he seemed an unlikely man to write legislation that would become part of our U.S. constitution.  However, a series of events over a matter of weeks saw him become a U.S. Senator and then a regular visitor of President Abraham Lincoln…

 

November 5, 2021
05Nov21 New Mellary Abbey 3
When people began attending funeral’s here, many had the exact same reaction.  They mentioned that when they passed, they wanted a funeral just like that.  What resulted is a business with deep ties to the mission these men serve…

November 4, 2021
04Nov21 New Mellary Abbey 2
These men had about 3500 acres of farmland, pasture and timber.  However, tilling the land they owned was becoming more difficult as they grew older.  What they did next not only pays the bills, it has become a well-known enterprise

November 3, 2021
03Nov21 New Mellary Abbey 1
Who helped supply the Union army’s depot in Galena, IL during the Civil War?  The monks at this abbey of course.  Their work is why you’ll find many of the beautiful buidings that still stand on the hills just outside of Dubuque…

November 2, 2021
02Nov21 Mulvane Kansas Restaurant 2
If you love Italian food perhaps you dream of a trip to Tuscany in Italy to savor the true tastes of that country.  But if you are looking for a great experience closer to home, you might not expect to find it in one small, rural Kansas town…

November 1, 2021
01Nov21 Mulvane Kansas Restaurant 1
Nancy grew up in small town Kansas but had a desire to see the country and the world.  For several years, her home town was a place she occasionally travelled to see family and friends, but then something changed…