What is community radio, and how is it really powered by the community? We spend the day with people at KFAI for a closer look at how news, music, and information make it to your ears. The day we'll spend is Friday, January 13th. Lucky day! We begin our day with Dale Connelly, News Director at KFAI…
When I walk in the door every weekday just before 5am, KFAI is already wide awake, thanks to our intrepid crew of all-night music programmers. This morning, DJ SLT spins his usual assortment of Goth, industrial, pop, new wave, glam, and indie rock. He finishes with a special birthday tribute to David Bowie. Bowie's "Lady Grinning Soul" gives way to The Takeaway, our morning news program from WNYC, WGBH-Boston and The New York Times. As "The Takeaway" begins, I put the coffee on and survey regional headlines. Friday morning host Shanna Gratton sorts through stories about Minnesota's impaired waters, a government agency decision regarding a major power line across south Minneapolis, and more wrangling over a possible new stadium for the Minnesota Vikings.
On cue from John Hockenberry and Celeste Hedlee in New York, Shanna opens the microphone to update listeners on the latest news and weather. As the morning progresses, I pull together material for the KFAI Weekly News and prepare features for Shanna to run during "The Takeaway." Producer Will Hale supplies us with a charming piece about a program that brings together elders and preschoolers at Mt.Olivet Church. Anchorman Bob Hines appears at 7:45am, to begin the process of assembling a script for the "KFAI Weekly News." Co-host Michelle Alimoradi reviews my notes for live interviews with immigration attorney Jenny Zanner and Kathy Bonnifield of Citizens for Election Integrity, Minnesota. With the arrival of engineer Lennie Chism at 8:30, our crew is in place for the live broadcast, immediately following Democracy Now! at 9am.
To read where our day at KFAI takes us next, click here.
By Dick Stevens, for KFAI Network
A Local-Area Landmark for 90 Years
Throughout our history Ingebretsen's Scandinavian Center has been a KFAI business underwriter. Their financial contributions help fund the programming heard on Fresh Air Radio. Ingebetsen's, now celebrating their 90th year of business, is still at l901 East Lake Street, the same south Minneapolis location they've occupied since 1921. Over their long history they've remained true to their community origins.
From Norway to East Lake Street in Minneapolis
The store's founder, Charles Ingebretsen, Sr., emigrated from Norway in the early 1900s and opened his first meat market in 1919 in the flourishing Scandinavian-American Cedar-Riverside neighborhood in South Minneapolis. His shop was on the ground floor of 1808 Riverside Avenue, the same building that today houses the offices and studios of KFAI. He soon opened several additional markets serving the Norwegian community, including the Model Meat Market on East Lake Street, near the intersection of two busy streetcar lines. "The East Lake location," says granddaughter Julie Ingebretsen, "is the one that stuck." In the 1960s, responding to the growing interest of a new generation in their rich cultural heritage and roots, the family renamed the business Ingebretsen's Scandinavian Center and added a gift shop to their original meat market.
A Popular Destination for Visitors from Far Away
Julie has managed Ingebretsen's gift store operations since 1974. The store's offerings include clothing, decorative items, books, films, calendars, stationery, music and collectibles, plus classes in knitting, needlework, and Scandinavian history and culture. While some items are imported, Julie proudly points out that many are created in the Scandinavian tradition by local-area artists. "Design and quality are the benchmarks of what we offer our customers," Julie says. "The store's unique blend of gifts, food items and ethnic recipes make it a popular destination for visitors from around the world."
A Wonderful Reminder of a Beloved Heritage
Photos and information about Ingebretsen's 90-year history are part of a display on view at their store. Also on display are the comments of store patrons, including one which reads: "Your commitment to the South Minneapolis neighborhood and community is admirable. As a city-dweller myself, I salute and thank you for it." Another describes Ingebretsen's as "a wonderful reminder of a beloved heritage."
Ingebretsen's as a KFAI Underwriting Sponsor
Julie appreciates the diversity of programming heard on KFAI, as well as its role as a broadcast voice for the local community. "The community is an important part of who we are and why we're still here. KFAI is a good place for our budget because we feel the station reaches an audience that represents our neighborhood and our community. We want it to remain strong and vital. It's very important to us," she says.
We value and appreciate the consistent support from this landmark business organization. More information about Ingebretsen's is available on the web at ingebretsens.com.
Contact Janis Lane-Ewart by email if you have leads on these items, thanks!
By Jason Reed, for KFAI Network
On Tuesday, February 21st, KFAI will have the singular honor of being the only community radio station in Minnesota to celebrate Black History Month with a day of dedicated programming!
KFAI will celebrate this year's historical event with musical programming, documentaries, and treasured stories honoring African American greats. We will feature "KFAI's Moment in Black History," where a compilation of significant contributions made by African Americans since 1890 will be included within hourly news updates, courtesy of students from Cristo Ray Jesuit High School and the Minnesota African American Registry.
Please join us for this special celebration by tuning to KFAI on Tuesday, February, 21st.
To find out more about KFAI's Black History Month plans, visit kfai.org/BHM.
There goes another happy Auto Club member! Can't tell who's driving? Well, tune in to KFAI the week of February 13th for a very special promotion of our wonderful Auto Club members. During "We Love Our Auto Clubbers" week, you'll hear from this special group of folks who give membership contributions monthly through checking or savings, and you will also find out how to get your Road Map to the Twin Cities!
KFAI celebrates over 20 years of bringing exclusively women's voices to the airwaves on International Women's Day, March 8th. Coordinators Beth Shaw, Patti Walsh and Nancy Skalkos anticipate a great day of programming. Visit kfai.org/IWD for more information.
If you want to help answer phones, get a jump on our spring goal, or find out more about being a KFAI Booster Club member, contact Pam Hill Kroyer at email@example.com, or at 612-341-3144 × 22.