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More than half the calls to United Way 211 are seeking help for rent and utilities.  Utilities are a basic need.  The folks at "Heat the Streets Run and Walk for Warmth" want to keep people safe and warm in their homes and make it possible for kids to do homework.  The event raises funds for energy assistance which are dispersed through the 5 Common Fund agencies  More than $580,000 was collecteed and used in 2017.

"Heat the Streets Run and Walk for Warmth" co-chair Sara Howard and committee member Tracey Christensen chat with Mike Hogan "Live & Local" about the event and the three ways poeple can participate.  (In one of the ways, you don't even have to run!!)

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

Opera Omaha is proud to present their next production, "The Elixir of Love" February 15th and 17th aty the Orpheum Theater. 

Omaha Symphonic Chorus presents their 2019 Gala event on February 23rd.  Two performances, one at 2:00 p.m. and one at 6:00 p.m., will celebrate show business and give audience members the opportunity to participate in silent and live auctions to support the activities of the Omaha Symphonic Chorus.

Artistic Director and Conductor Greg Zielke joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the show and the program.

More information can be found at www.OmahaSymphonicChorus.org

Nebraska Wind Symphony's winter concert is this Sunday, February 10th at Omaha Benson High School at 3:00 p.m. 

Conductor Larry MacTaggart joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the NWS program, how to join the symphony, and this concert in particular.

More details can be found at www.NebraskaWindSymphony.com

"Of Mice and Men" will open Friday, Feb. 15 at the Omaha Community Playhouse. The show will run in the Howard Drew Theatre from Feb. 15 through March 17, 2019. Performances will be held Wednesdays through Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.

The play, based on the critically-acclaimed classic American novel by John Steinbeck, explores the ultimate meaning of friendship.  Migrant ranch workers in California during the Great Depression, George—an intelligent but uneducated man Played by Josh Peyton)—and Lennie (played by Tony Schik)—a large man with the mind of a child—dream of making enough money to buy their own land.  When a crime is accidentally committed, the two men are faced with a moral predicament in one of the most powerful and devastating stories of the 20th century.

Josh Peyton joins Mike Hogan "Live & Local" to discuss the process of mounting this production and his approach to a complex character.  

More information can be found at www.OmahaPlayhouse.com.

(Omaha, NE)  --  The landlord of an Omaha apartment complex is facing dozens of code violations.  Kay Anderson appeared at City Hall yesterday to face 100 misdemeanor charges related to the code violations.  The violations were found at the Yale Park Apartments, which was shut down by officials last fall.  Anderson will be arraigned on March 4th.

(Douglas County, NE)  --  The Douglas County Health Department is confirming more flu-related deaths.  Officials say three more adults have died of the flu, and seven adult flu-related deaths have been reported in Douglas County this season.  More than 300 flu cases were confirmed in Douglas County last week.   

OMAHA, Neb. -- Omaha Public School’s Board of Education voted 6-2 to accept a bus contract bid with Student Transportation of America Monday night.  The bid was estimated at $20,612,726.83, and the contract would be between August 2019 and August 2023 with two one-year contract extensions built in.

The board listened to a presentation detailing the bids and looking at numbers from STA and another company, First Student. First Student, though, put an estimated bid that was about $5.4 million more expensive.

February 7th at 6:00 p.m. you can enjoy a casual conversation between Rachel Adams, Bemis Center’s new Chief Curator and Director of Programs, and artist Angie Seykora.  The pair will talk about how Adams became a curator, past exhibitions, ideas for future programs at Bemis, and how she hopes to engage with the local arts community.   Wine and beer will be served, questions and comments will be encouraged!

For a preview of events, Rachel stopped by the KIOS-FM studios and had a chat with Mike Hogan "Live & Local."  More information on the event is available at http://www.bemiscenter.org/.  

The event is free and open to the public.

(Lincoln, NE)  --  A new Nebraska State Poet has been announced.  Governor Pete Ricketts said on Wednesday that the position will go to Matt Mason of Omaha after a selection process led by the Nebraska Arts Council and several other groups.  Mason, the executive director of the Nebraska Writers Collective, will serve as State Poet until 2023.  The official position of Nebraska Poet Laureate was established in 1921.    

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Omaha restaurants and bars that haven't paid their 2019 food and drink permits are at risk of being shut down.

The Douglas County Health Department issued that warning this week, noting that invoices for the permits were sent to establishments Nov. 1.

The department says that as of Friday, 40 businesses still owe a late fee and 119 owe for the permit and late fees. New 2019 permits were required to be in place by Jan. 1, and any business operating without a valid permit is doing so illegally.

(Des Moines, IA)  --  The flu is officially considered widespread across the State of Iowa.  According to the state Health Department, there have been more than 30 people across Iowa who have been hospitalized because of the flu this season.  It also says there have been three flu-related deaths.

From the "One Festival" to the individual show offerings, so much is happening at Opera Omaha.  Lauren Medici stops by the KIOS studios to chat with Mike Hogan on the coldest day in history!

More information is available at https://www.operaomaha.org/ and at https://www.onefestivalomaha.org/

(Omaha, NE)  --  A polar vortex is causing dangerous wind chills in Nebraska.  A Wind Chill Warning is in effect for eastern Nebraska including Omaha until noon, and a Wind Chill Advisory will be in effect from today at noon until 9:00 tomorrow morning.  Wind chills in the impacted area could reach 40-degrees-below-zero.  Officials are warning that exposure to the cold temperatures could lead to frostbite and hypothermia within minutes.

(Omaha, NE)  --  The Omaha City Council is saying no to private pothole contractors.  Council members voted yesterday to reject an agreement to pay three vendors up to 450-thousand-dollars combined to help with emergency pothole repairs this year.  City Street Maintenance Engineer Austin Rowser and Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert had both expressed support for the agreement. 

(Omaha, NE)  --  The Salvation Army is helping people stay safe from the extreme winter cold.  Omaha-area Salvation Army Centers will serve as warming centers.  The Kroc Center at 2825 Y Street will be open from 6:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m., the Citadel Corps at 3612 Cuming Street will be open from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., the North Corps at 2424 Pratt Street will be open from 9:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. and the Council Bluffs Corps on North 16th Street will open its doors from 9:00 a.m.

Steph Dorland and Casey Walker from Max I. Walker Cleaners and Launderers stopped by the studios to chat with Mike Hogan about the Ultra Chic Boutique, which takes place February 2nd, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at "A View on State" at 134th and State Streets.

Every year, Max I. Walker customers donate dresses – prom, wedding, bridesmaid, cocktail and other formal gowns – at locations all across the Metro, and then Max I. Walker’s employees generously clean, press and store them. 

Once ready, the dresses are sold for just $30 (cash only) at the Ultra Chic Boutique dress sale event in February.   

Starting in 2018, the Max I. Walker family began partnering with the Nebraska Alzheimer's Association for the Ultra Chic Boutique.  At the February 2018, event, they raised $20,000 in just 6 hours for this worthy cause!

NEW THIS YEAR! Free Shuttle Service to the Event Venue!  Max I. Walker  wants to make the Ultra Chic Boutique Dress Sale accessible to those who do not have their own transportation – please take advantage of this service so you can shop at the event, and tell your friends too!  Pickups Start at 8 am, at Central High School Departure is every half hour, starting at 8 am.  The pickup point is Central High School, located at 20th & Dodge.

More informaton can be found at https://www.maxiwalker.com/ultra-chic-boutique/

One afternoon, Anthony arrives unexpectedly at classmate Caroline’s door bearing a beat-up copy of Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, and an urgent assignment from their English teacher.  As these two let down their guards and share their secrets, they unlock a much deeper mystery that has brought them together.  I and You is an ode to youth, life, love, and the strange beauty of human connectedness.

Barry Carman is directing this production and chats with Mike Hogan about the importance of the show, the maturity of the young cast members, and the partnership with several community organizations.  

The show opens January 31st and runs through February 24th.  More information can be found at http://bluebarn.org/

(Omaha, NE)  --  Children's Hospital and Medical Center in Omaha is responding to a lawsuit filed by two doctors.  The lawsuit was filed earlier this month against the hospital, its CEO and a physician after the death of a patient.  In the lawsuit, the doctors expressed concerns about Dr. Adam Conley's performance and accused hospital CEO Dr. Richard Azizkhan and Conley of disparaging their reputations.  The hospital filed a response to the lawsuit, calling the doctors' claims baseless.

(Lincoln, NE)  --  Lincoln police are cracking down on some designated drivers.  Police say they are focusing on areas including O Street, which on weekends is full of vehicles dropping off or picking up passengers.  Officers are ticketing drivers who break the law when they stop in the middle of the road.  Police say the crackdown is being done to ensure other drivers and pedestrians are safe.

(Lincoln, NE)  --  The Nebraska Senate is having its busiest year in more than a decade when it comes to introducing legislation.  The Senate had introduced 739 bills and seven proposed constitutional amendments as of yesterday.  That's the most proposed legislation since 2005.  Yesterday was the final day lawmakers could introduce bills during this session.

Nebraska Alzheimer's Advocacy Day is a chance to meet face-to-face with elected officials to discuss Alzheimer’s disease and its impact in Nebraska, share your personal story of how Alzheimer’s has impacted your life, and make strategic requests of state policymakers.

Terry Streetman, Public Policy Manager for the Alzheimer's Association-Nebraska Chapter, chats with Mike Hogan about the upcoming State Advocacy Day and current legislation the Alzheimer's Association is supporting at the state level.  

You can participate on this exciting day as people gather at the capitol, DRESSED IN PURPLE, to show  elected officials how many Nebraskans are impacted by Alzheimer's disease.

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

Performing Artists Repertory Theatre, 7400 Dodge Street, Omaha, Nebraska, 68114, is happy to announce their upcoming production, "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" a masterpiece by the esteemed playwright, Edward Albee.

The play examines the complexities of the marriage of a middle-aged couple, George and Martha. Late one evening after a university faculty party they receive an unwitting younger couple, Nick and Honey, as guests, and draw them into their bitter and frustrated relationship.   

Brent Spencer, who plays George, stops by to chat with Mike Hogan "Live & Local" on KIOS-FM.  The play runs February 8th through the 17th. 

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

Max I. Walker announces the submission date of finalized designs for the Dress Flip 2019.  Five local fashion designers each chose several dresses from the Ultra Chic Boutique dress sale inventory in November 2018, and have been working diligently for weeks to deconstruct those garments and use their creativity to “flip” them into one completely new dress. The designers will drop off their finished designs between 5 and 6 pm 1/21/2019 at the Max I. Walker located at 15825 West Maple Road in Omaha.

Three notable designers who have previously shown their collections at Omaha Fashion Week are competing in the Dress Flip 2019: Agustin M. Delgado, Hannah Hidalgo and Masey Ringlein. Last year’s contest winner, Lynlee Medhi, will compete again this year, with another previous Dress Flip contestant and Project Runway applicant Sabrina Ree-Feller rounding out the five contestants.

Steph Dorland and Casey Walker of Max I. Walker chat with Mike Hogan at KIOS-FM about the Dress Flip, the Ultra Chic Boutique, and how Alzheimer's hits us all close to home.  More information can be found at https://www.maxiwalker.com/ultra-chic-boutique/

(Omaha, NE)  --  An Omaha-based company is being sold to a Wisconsin-based company for 22-billion dollars.  Financial technology company Fiserv announced this morning that it will be purchasing First Data in an all-stock deal and unite the two companies.  First Data employs about five-thousand people in the Omaha area and there's currently no word on what will happen to them.

(Omaha, NE)  --  A major Omaha thoroughfare will be expanded.  Plans call for widening 180th Street from two lanes to four, and a bridge will be built to allow drivers to take 180th from Dodge to Blondo.  Officials say a contract will be awarded in the fall and construction on the project will start in 2020.  Construction is expected to wrap up in 2023.  

(Omaha, NE)  --  Nebraska food assistance recipients will receive their benefits despite the ongoing government shutdown.  The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services says families will receive their February SNAP benefits on January 20th.  More than 70-thousand households across Nebraska receive food assistance.

Filing income taxes can be overwhelming, and not everyone can afford to pay for expert advice to ensure they’re filing accurately and taking full advantage of available tax refunds.  To assist these individuals, the Omaha Earned Income Tax Credit Coalition – a program funded in part by United Way of the Midlands – will oversee five free tax preparation sites in the metro area.

Dr. Brad Ekwerekwu stops by the KIOS-FM studios to chat with Mike Hogan about the type of help, the reasons folks should seek help, and the financial health assistance his organization provides.

In 2017, the EITC alone put approximately $305,000,000 back into the hands of Nebraska residents. 

More information can be found at www.omahaeitc.org or by going to the Facebook site -

https://www.facebook.com/OmahaEITC

(Lincoln, NE)  --  A Lincoln animal shelter is looking to find new homes for dozens of cats.  The Capital Humane Society received 84 cats from a single owner this past weekend.  Humane Society officials say the large number of felines put a strain on the shelter resources.  The cats are receiving wellness exams, and some of them will be available for adoption at the Pieloch Pet Adoption Center today at 11:30 a.m.

(Kansas City, MO)  --  Some 12-ounce bottles of Boulevard Tank 7 beer sold in Kansas City and Omaha, Nebraska are being recalled by Boulevard Brewing Company.  The recall is due to glass being found in at least one bottle.  It's been determined the issue came from a supplier that had a production issue resulting in out-of-spec bottles being used.  The recall is for beer purchased on or after December 28 in Kansas City and on or after December 17 in Omaha.

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