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The Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) of Omaha was created in 1896.  Hospitals, caring citizens, and special organizations soon after began to mobilize, realizing the community’s health needs and concerns and the opportunity and difference VNA could make.

Today, VNA of Omaha and Council Bluffs continues to be recognized for being the trusted in-home care provider at the forefront of innovative skilled health services and compassionate caregiving.  120 years ago, VNA was a voice for community health.  Today, they are advancing tomorrow’s healthcare.

Carole Patrick, Vice President of Communications and Development at the VNA, stopped by the studios at 33rd and Burt to let Mike Hogan know about the program and the upcoming fundraiser on February 23rd Art & Soup!  The event will be at the Embassy Suites La Vista at 12520 Westport Pkwy.   

Art & Soup features delicious soups, breads and desserts, created exclusively for this event and served by the best area chefs and restaurants.  Attendees can also view and purchase items from local artists, who donate at least half of their sales back to VNA.  Many restaurants and artists will participate this year, raising funds to provide a VNA nurse in every local homeless shelter.

More information can be found at https://www.vnatoday.org/event/art-soup-3/

Since 2005, the Restore Nebraska conference has been training and motivating people to save older properties.  Now in their 15th year they are inviting back some of the favorite craftsmen and speakers.  People like plasterer Dick Grace, tile maker Josh Blanc and preservation advocate Bob Yapp who runs Belvedere School for Hands-On Preservation.  Plus Barbara Sommer who has spent the past year interviewing past and current Omaha leaders about 1970s and 1980s development in downtown Omaha (yes, Jobber’s Canyon was discussed).

Nicole Malone, Event Director, stopped by the KIOS-FM studios to speak with Mike Hogan about this great program and the impact it has had on revitalizing neighborhoods.  And to give a "shout out" to History Nebraska for their contribution allowing them to bring in some of the country’s best craftsman and historic preservation leaders to this event.

More information can be found at https://www.restorationexchange.org/events/restore-nebraska-conference2020/

Winner of eight Tony Awards® and based on the Oscar®-winning film, Once is the achingly beautiful tale of unexpected love between Guy, an Irish musician, and Girl, a Czech immigrant.  The uplifting score—featuring the Academy Award®-winning single, “Falling Slowly,”—is performed entirely on stage, with the actors doubling as orchestra musicians.  Equal parts touching and inspiring, Once reminds us of music’s unique ability to forge deep, unspoken connections in our lives.

Two of the leads, Jay Hanson and Melissa King, join Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the show, how music influences people, and their favorite parts of this award winning show.

The show opens February 28th.  More information is available at http://www.omahaplayhouse.com/tickets/view/once/

There were several requests to post online the edited version of Dr. Cheryl Logan's chat with Mike Hogan about the Strategic Plan of Action.  That interview, which aired on "Live & Local" on Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning, is below.

If you would like to hear the full half hour interview, that can be found here:

https://www.kios.org/post/ops-releases-strategic-plan-action-dr-cheryl-logans-full-interview-live-local

The Strategic Plan of Action can be found here: 

https://district.ops.org/Portals/0/PUBLIC_INFORMATION/DC2020/Omaha%20Public%20Schools%202020-2025%20Strategic%20Plan%20of%20Action.pdf?ver=2020-02-06-100605-113

And the website dedicated to the Strategic Plan of Action can be found here:

https://district.ops.org/BOARDOFEDUCATION/OPSStrategicPlanofAction.aspx

**UPDATE:   There were several requests to post the edited version of Dr. Cheryl Logan's chat with Mike Hogan.  That interview is here: https://www.kios.org/post/dr-cheryl-logans-short-interview-ops-strategic-plan-action-aired-kios-fm

The Omaha Public Schools Strategic Plan of Action deliberately and creatively addresses the trends Omaha Public Schools faces and reimagines a 21st century education ecosystem that prepares all students for a successful life after high school.

A broad spectrum of data were used in the development of the Strategic Plan of Action that reflects consensus among stakeholders. The strategic planning process included extensive outreach with stakeholders invited to participate in both focus groups and surveys. Community member, family, staff member and student input provided the basis for the development of the plan.

The Strategic Plan of Action is the result of research and represents the shared values and priorities of the Omaha Public Schools.

Superintendent of Omaha Public Schools, Dr. Cheryl Logan, sat down with Mike Hogan at the KIOS-FM studios for a “Live & Local” discussion about the Strategic Plan of Action.  While a version of that discussion (edited for time) was aired on 91.5 FM, this is the full, thirty minute question and answer chat between the two of them

More information and a copy of the Strategic Plan of Actioncan be found at stratplanofaction.ops.org

The Strategic Plan of Action can be found here: 

https://district.ops.org/Portals/0/PUBLIC_INFORMATION/DC2020/Omaha%20Public%20Schools%202020-2025%20Strategic%20Plan%20of%20Action.pdf?ver=2020-02-06-100605-113

Omaha Performing Arts’ Jazz Academy fosters quality jazz education in Omaha area middle schools.  This free program connects students and teachers with a professional teaching artist to explore jazz on a deeper level.

Participating schools receive free in school clinics tailored to the needs of individual jazz bands throughout the school year, free jazz education workshops for middle and high school teachers, and performance opportunities for students.

Jazz Academy teaching artist, Shawn Bell, and Associate Director of Education for Omaha Performing Arts’ Jazz Academy, Kathleen Lawler–Hustead, join Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the program and the difference it makes in the lives of the students and the faculty.

More information can be found at https://o-pa.org/learn-and-engage/student-programs/jazz-academy

The Nebraska Girl Scout Cookie Program began Feb. 7th.  This is when Girl Scouts become entrepreneurs and earn money to power leadership opportunities, adventures, and community service projects. 

The cookie program also teaches girls about entrepreneurship as they learn essential skills like money management, public speaking, and decision making, which set them up for a lifetime of success.  Nine in ten Girl Scouts say the cookie program has built their entrepreneurship skills—so every cookie purchase is an investment in the world changing business leaders of tomorrow.  What’s more, 100 percent of net revenue from cookie sales stays local for girls across Nebraska.

Shannon Peterson, Communication Specialist, stops by the KIOS-FM studios to chat with Mike Hogan about the program, the new flavors, and all the good Girl Scouts do for young ladies across the state...She also brought cookie samples!!

More information on how to get cookies or join the Girl Scouts can be found on the website: https://www.girlscoutsnebraska.org/

Omaha Public Library (OPL) has prepared a list of top circulating titles from 2019.  Additionally, OPL staff have selected over 100 favorite titles from last year, the 2019 Top Shelf, and shared brief reviews at topshelf.omahalibrary.org.  You can find these selections and more at omahalibrary.org.

And there's so much more going on at your public library, including nominations being accepted for the 'Omaha Reads' program.  Marketing & Media Relations Manager, Emily Getzschman, swings by the studios at 33rd and Burt to help Mike Hogan "check out" what's new in the library and all the different activities available.

The Nebraska Wind Symphony has a new concert on Sunday, February 16, 2020 called “In Two Places.”  The show begins at 3:00 PM at the Omaha Conservatory of Music, (7023 Cass St, Omaha, NE.)

This winter concert features NWS Middle School All-Star Saxophones, Dr. Patrick Brown, saxophone soloist, and Dr. Adam Fontana, guest conductor.  This concert explores repertoire that includes many wonderful American classics as well as contemporary works for winds that challenge the listener to think differently about many aspects of our day-to-day lives.

Dr. Joshua Kearney is the new Music Director and he joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the show and the participation of the youth in such a production.  Josh is also Director of Athletic Bands at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. 

For more information, one can go to the website https://nebraskawindsymphony.com/

Every summer Kaneko provides students with the opportunity to engage with local professionals in STEAM + Creativity related fields to delve deeper into the design process and its real-world applications.  Students will engage with local professionals to learn about the principles and processes of design, creativity, and much more.  Each 5-day camp provides a group of 20 students a variety of exciting exercises and activities.

Katherine Scarpello, Education & Public Program Coordinator, stops by the KIOS-FM studios to chat with Mike Hogan about the programs, how they are funded, and one can get their children involved.

More information can be found at https://thekaneko.org/creative-camps/

Over the course of their 20+ year career, Grammy nominated quintet Imani Winds has discovered what audiences value most from their concerts: a sense of connection – with the music, the performers, the composers, the artistry and beyond.  The concept of connectivity has led them to program not only music from the traditional chamber music canon, but also concerts that reach beyond the usual boundaries of the recital stage.

On Monday, February 10th, at Presbyterian Church of the Cross, Imani Winds performs free of charge!  Executive Director of Vesper Concerts, Kristi Treu, joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the concert, the change to a Monday night, and the rest of the season on tap.

More information can be found at http://vesperconcerts.org/event/imani-winds-the-beauty-of-strife/

The Census is a vital tool for fair economic and political decisions.  The data collected have a direct monetary impact on every state including Nebraska.  In the past, communities of color have been under represented for a variety of reasons.  Tragically, that under representation has the hardest economic impact on the very communities that were not accurately counted.

Dr. Lissette Aliaga-Linares, Assistant Professor of Sociology & OLLAS Faculty at the University of Nebraska Omaha joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" in the KIOS-FM studios to discuss the issue and what can be done to fix it.

Former Governor and U.S. Senator representing the people of the great state of Nebraska, Bob Kerrey, took some time to chat with Mike Hogan "Live & Local" about several topics.  An edited version of the interview, (cut due to time constraints), aired on 91.5 KIOS.  Below is the full interview.

The Omaha Community Playhouse has done it again!  Native Gardens is a hilarious turf war between neighbors, generations, and ethnicities.  When Pablo and Tania purchase a new home in a well-to-do white neighborhood, the couple next door initially offer a friendly welcome.  But when a laughable property line disagreement dissolves into an all-out turf war, the dirt begins to fly.  Packed with witty quips—and plenty of back-and-forth mudslinging—Native Gardens is a side-splitting reminder that, despite our differences, we all share a much larger common ground.

Director Ablan Roblin stops by the KIOS studios to chat with Mike Hogan about the show and how important it is to laugh at ourselves while we navigate through the important role of "neighbor."

The show opens on February 14th and runs through March 15th.

More information can be found at http://www.omahaplayhouse.com/tickets/view/nativegardens/

The TakeCare Campaign wants to inspire you to re-imagine your health through powerful story telling of inspiration and transformation.  TakeCare of your whole health – mind, body, spirit and community – so you can live life fully for whatever matters most to you.  

TakeCare Chair Spokesperson, Jessica Janssen Wolford, who is also the Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Midland University, joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the campaign (only six cities were chosen nationally for the kickoff, the greater Omaha area is one of them) and the difference TakeCare has already made in her personal life.

A free launch event will be held at Midland University 900 North Clarkson in the Campus Cafeteria on February 5 from 12-1:30PM.   More information can be found at https://takecare.org/

The roarin’ 20s are back and better than ever!  First Tuesdays at the Joslyn Castle with Omaha Conservatory of Music starts in February and brings the sights and sounds of the 1920s come roaring back to life!  Joslyn Castle has partnered with the Omaha Conservatory of Music to bring you '20s-inspired duets, string quartets, ragtime piano performances and more.

Each performance will be hosted in the gorgeous, and historically appropriate, Joslyn Castle Music Room every First Tuesday beginning in February.  This is the very room the Joslyns' hosted live music for the community in their day and we are thrilled to honor their passion for the arts once again.

Janice Pickering, Manager of programs and events at Joslyn Castle, and Candace Jorgensen, director of community engagement, join Mike Hogan live in the studios to discuss this program.

More information can be found at https://joslyncastle.com/events/special-events/first-tuesdays-with-omaha-conservatory-of-music.html

Performing Artists Repertory Theatre presents their next production MAMMA MIA! opening January 31 and running through February 16, 2020.  Over 60 million people worldwide have fallen in love with the characters, the story and the music ​that make Mamma Mia! the ultimate feel-good show!

ABBA's hits tell the hilarious story of a young woman's search for her birth father. This sunny and funny tale unfolds on a Greek island paradise. On the eve of her wedding, a daughter's quest to discover the identity of her father brings three men from her mother's past back to the island they last visited 20 years ago.

Mackenzie Dehmer and Analisa Peyton stop by the KIOS-FM studios on 33rd and Burt to chat with Mike Hogan about the show and what makes the evening of laughs and entertainment so special.

More information can be found at http://www.performingartistsrepertorytheatre.org/

The Bluebarn Theatre wants you to know you are invited to a celebration.  A celebration of time, gratitude, our childhoods, and the million miracles at work in the world in every single moment.  There will be pictures.  There will be music.  Gifts.  Wonder.  Grief.  Rebirth.  From Will Eno, author of the BLUEBARN’s productions of Thom Pain and Gnit, comes an extraordinary, strange and beautiful experience that wakes up the big questions, and awakens us to one another with sly humor, compassion, and grace. 

P.S. There will be cake.

Wakey, Wakey opens on January 30th and runs through February 23rd, 2020.  Director Barry Carmen joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the production and the importance of celebration.  And there really will be cake!

More information can be found at http://bluebarn.org/tickets/

75 North is a nonprofit that has transformed a neighborhood over the past decade to be more community-focused and raise people up out of poverty.  

Their official mission is breaking the cycle of poverty and community deterioration by partnering to create high-quality housing, thriving schools, recreational facilities and other neighborhood enrichment amenities.

Cydney Franklin is the Chief Operating Officer of 75 North and she stopped by the KIOS studios to chat with Mike Hogan "Live & Local" about the mission of the organization, the new "Dining Room" (a food-court style dining area with three restaurants), and the incredible rejuvenation of the Highlander neighborhood over the past decade. 

More information about how you can help or what amenities and business you can enjoy in this revitalized area can be found at http://www.seventyfivenorth.org/

Terry Streetman is the Director of Public Policy and Advocacy for the Alzheimer's Association, Nebraska Chapter.  He spends a great deal of time and effort at this state's capitol showing the unicameral senators how they can help the many thousands of families in Nebraska impacted by Alzheimer’s Disease.

He took the time to swing by the studios at 33rd and Burt to discuss with Mike Hogan the latest bill that has been introduced, explain how he advocates for Alzheimer's related causes, and how you can get involved.

More information can be found at https://www.alz.org/nebraska

Rachel Adams, Bemis Chief Curator and Director of Programs, stopped by the KIOS-FM studios with Visual and Sound Artist, Jeremy Toussaint-Baptiste, to announce the second installment at the new LOW END venue.  The new 25,000 square foot music venue in Bemis Center's lower level will kick off this event at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, January 23 with an Artist Talk in presentation space on main floor, hosted by Rachel.  Then at 8:00 Jeremy Toussaint-Baptiste, a New York-based artist, composer, and performer considering notions of errant relations that thrive across subjectivities performs for the audience.

All performances at LOW END, including this one, are free thanks to a generous foundation donation.

Rachel and Jeremy sit down with Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss this program and Jeremy's creative process.

More information can be found at https://www.bemiscenter.org/get_involved/low-end.html

Omaha Virtual School (OVS) is a full-time, tuition-free public blended school within the Omaha Public School District.  OVS enables students to take ownership of their learning.  Students may work quickly through the areas they understand, take their time in areas where they need extra help, and put an emphasis on subjects that interest them most.  

Dr. Wendy Loewenstein is the Director of Omaha Virtual School.  She stopped by the KIOS-FM studios to chat with Mike Hogan, "Live & Local" about the program, the benefits, the kindergarten roundup as well as the middle and high school open houses on the 30th of January.  These event kicks off the recruiting for the 2020-2021 school year.

More information can be found at www.OmahaVirtualSchool.org.

With the mission to “ engage the imagination and create excitement about learning” the Omaha Children’s Museum is truly fun for the whole family!

Director of Marketing and Public Relations, Kim Reiner stops by the KIOS studios to chat “Live & Local” with Mike Hogan about the latest addition to the fun, “AMERICA TO ZANZIBAR: Muslim Cultures Near and Far” which runs through April 19th. 

Children can explore ancient trade routes on a two story Indian Ocean dhow (boat) or on a camel.  They’ll thrill to the excitement of a global marketplace as they pretend to buy, sell and trade fruit, fish, spice, ceramic, textiles, and rugs.  The exhibit environment is rich with art, architecture and design elements from across the globe.  Visitors will marvel at a 3D exploration of mosque architecture from the Maldives to China. Original works by emerging American Muslim artists join traditional art forms including intricately designed tiles, ornate ceramics, and complex patterned rugs.

More information can be found at http://www.ocm.org/exhibits-and-events/special-exhibits/america-to-zanzibar/

January is National Mentoring Month.  MENTOR Nebraska and their partner mentoring programs are joining forces for the 7th annual city-wide mentor recruitment campaign in January.  The purpose of the campaign is to raise awareness of the various mentoring opportunities available through different organizations and address common misconceptions about time commitment and other possible deterrents to becoming a mentor. The goal for the campaign is to recruit 400 mentors in January.  Anyone interested in becoming a mentor can learn more about the different options at MentorNebraska.org.

Laura Bonnet (Mentoring Coordinator) and Roberta Wilhelm (Executive Director) with Girls Inc. Omaha join Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss mentoring opportunities and the life-changing impact that mentoring has on the kids as well as the mentors.

More information is available at https://www.mentornebraska.org/

The Omaha Academy of Ballet (OAB) is proud to present the 15th annual Omaha Dance Project (ODP), which will feature an impressive line-up of local and regional dance on January 24-26, 2020.

ODP 2020 will feature: La Esmeralda, a classical ballet based on Victor Hugo’s Hunchback of Notre-Dame, re-staged by Artistic Director Juliette Henning (Omaha), Flamenco Omaha, as well as works by Ashley Durst (Lincoln) and Lauren Wichert (Omaha).

Juliette Henning stops by the studios to chat with Mike Hogan "Live & Local" about the show, the exciting talent involved, and how you can enjoy the show.

More information and tickets for Omaha Dance Project are available at http://oabdance.org/home.aspx or by calling 402-346-0469.  All performances will be at the Mary Joy and Tal Anderson Performing Arts Center, 7400 Military Ave, Omaha, NE.

Max I. Walker is hosting the 13th annual "Ultra Chic Boutique" dress sale on Saturday, February 1st.  The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at "A View on State Street," located at 134th and State streets.  The event will include the standard dress sale (all dresses are sold for $30!) as well as a Dress Raffle Fashion Show.  This part of the event highlights some of the best and most beautiful gowns that have been donated to the sale, and raffles off the ‘first right to purchase’ these special dresses for just $30 to shoppers.  Some of these dresses originally cost hundreds, even a thousand dollars.

All proceeds are donated to the Alzheimer’s Association, Nebraska Chapter.  The 2018 and 2019 sales reached a combined $38,000 for the association.  Dress donations are still being accepted at all Max I. Walker locations. Employees will clean, press, and store the dresses for no charge.

Steph Dorland, (Marketing Director at Max I. Walker), and Casey Walker, (Director of Retail Operations at Max I. Walker) stop by the studios at 33rd and Burt to chat "Live & Local" with Mike Hogan about the event and how Alzheimer's has touched everyone, including the Walker family.

Dresses will be available in all shapes, sizes, and colors.  The event is a more economical and eco-friendly way to shop.  More information can be found at https://www.maxiwalker.com/ultra-chic-boutique/

George Joslyn loved to entertain in what is considered the “original man cave.” He and his friends would gather for billiards, cocktails, cigars and even bowling in the Castle basement. One can imagine many a lively conversation were had amongst George and his guests.

Janice Pickering, Manager of Programs & Events at Joslyn Castle, joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to talk about the third annual Speakeasy Series.  This is an opportunity to tour the “original man cave,” enjoy the spirits of the evening as well as hand picked food pairings.  A fantastic evening of sights, sounds, and tastes.

The evening begins with a drink and tour of George Joslyn's rarely-seen mancave basement.  After one explores the former epic space, you'll get settled in for an evening of sipping and noshing with some of Omaha's most respected experts in the field.

The series runs January through April on the third Thursday, and Joslyn Castle will host a tasting featuring one of the following favorites: Rum, Brandy, Scotch, and Gin!

More information can be found at https://joslyncastle.com/events/special-events/speakeasy-series.html

The Omaha Community Playhouse kicks off 2020 with the multi-award winning play A Raisin in the Sun.  Winner of five Tony Awards®, A Raisin in the Sun confronts life in South Side Chicago through the eyes of the Younger family. After years of battling poverty and racism, the Youngers hope an unexpected insurance check will be their ticket to a better life. With the looming fear that this may be their only chance, the family is torn apart as they struggle to agree on the most effective way to use the money.

Local actor Brandon Williams plays the role of George Murchison and he joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the importance of this play as well as the current relevance in today's climate.  The show opens Friday, January 17th.

More information can be found at http://www.omahaplayhouse.com/tickets/view/raisinsun/

Film Streams is a 501(c)3 nonprofit arts organization dedicated to enhancing the cultural environment of the Omaha-Council Bluffs area through the presentation and discussion of film as an art form.

Film Streams oversees two wonderful and distinct cinemas: the Ruth Sokolof Theater, the two-screen venue we opened in 2007 within the Saddle Creek Records complex in North Downtown Omaha, and the historic Dundee Theater, Omaha’s longest surviving neighborhood cinema.

Film Streams Communications Director, Patrick Kinney, stops by the studios at 33rd and Burt to chat with Mike Hogan about all the programs and film showings scheduled for this quarter.

More information about the education programs, workshops, and film schedules can be found at

https://filmstreams.org/

The hustle and bustle of the holidays along with bone-chilling weather can be very difficult for people with any stage of dementia.  From the confusion of surroundings changing (due to seasonal decorations) to forgetting to check the outside temperature and not properly bundling up, caregivers need to be on the lookout for opportunities to help patients navigate this time of year.  

Diane Hendricks is a social worker for the Nebraska Alzheimer's Association.  She sits down with Mike Hogan on KIOS-FM to offer tips and hints on making sure the holidays are safe, healthy, and fun for everyone surrounding a person with any stage of dementia.  

For more information or if you need assistance of any kind, please consult the website www.alz.org/nebraska.

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