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The Omaha Reader
A biweekly dive into the stories and people that make up Omaha‘s most pressing issues. Produced by Chris Bowling.
Apr 12, 2022
Building ”The Good Life” For All Nebraskans, Not Just Some
Cammy Watkins and Maggie Wood believe honest conversations about equity and inclusion in Nebraska's schools and businesses — and in everyday life — can help create The Good Life for all Nebraskans, not just some. They are the co-executive directors of Inclusive Communities, a nonprofit organization providing advocacy and education around diversity and equity in Nebraska. Maggie and Cammy joined reporter Bridget Fogarty at The Reader's newsroom on a cold February night to talk about Inclusive Communities and its latest role leading national conversations on equity with the National Federation for Just Communities. This podcast was produced by Bridget Fogarty. Music by Jon Rix (https://p0hk.bandcamp.com) Learn more about Inclusive Communities by visiting the nonprofit's website or follow them on Facebook.
Feb 21, 2022
Bike Lane Blues, and the Governments We Choose
Sarah Johnson had been part of the 10-year fight to bring a protected bike to Omaha when one finally came to Harney Street. Then she found out the two-mile stretch of road, which are common in most U.S. cities, wasn't permanent and it's future wasn't in the city's budget. To her, the whole fight—which includes firings, vetoes and city council members calling the police on their own public works department—says less about biking, and more about how decisions are made in Omaha. This podcast was produced by Chris Bowling. Music by Jon Rix (https://p0hk.bandcamp.com/) Read Mode Shift Omaha's history of the fight to get a bike lane in Omaha. Read Sarah Johnson's op-ed in NOISE.
Jan 26, 2022
Homeless in Omaha and the Search for Stability
Dana Swope is one of many residents forced to leave an apartment complex in midtown deemed unlivable by the City of Omaha in late January 2022. Chris Bowling sat down with her in her former home on the third floor of the Flora apartments at 2557 Jones Street on January 25 to learn about how she ended up paying $700 a month in a cramped studio apartment with mold, no heat and mice. Unfortunately her story may not be that uncommon as many in Omaha pay too much for poor, substandard living arrangements as the city is short 80,000 affordable housing units. See pictures of Dana and her apartment. If you want to donate to organization serving those facing housing stability, we recommend: Heartland Family Services https://www.heartlandfamilyservice.org/donate-now/ Together https://togetheromaha.org/get-involved/donate.html Metro Area Continuum Care for the Homeless https://shareomaha.org/donate/metro-area-continuum-care-homeless This podcast was produced by Chris Bowling. Music by Jon Rix (https://p0hk.bandcamp.com).
Nov 22, 2021
OUR FIRST MEMBERSHIP DRIVE!! Heaston‘s History of The Reader
Nearly 30 years ago a motley crew of alt-y Omahans put together the first Reader. All these decades later our paper still follows the same mission: find the unheard stories and uplift communities boxed out by other media. But to get to all that we need to talk about classic 80s movies and music, saving one of Omaha's most historic venues, jam bands, early internet and the man at the center of it all — John Heaston. Our publisher and editor co-founded The Reader and has been a part of it ever since its inception and sat down with news editor Chris Bowling to talk about it. The story that follows is as much a story about journalism as it is Omaha history. If you enjoy our work, please consider becoming a member during our first-ever membership drive. https://thereader.com/membership-plans ----- Production by Chris Bowling Music by Jon Rix aka p0h_k (https://p0hk.bandcamp.com/)
1 hr 11 min
Nov 9, 2021
1st Sky x The Reader — Omaha‘s tiff with TIF
Omaha Reader reporter Chris Bowling joins Paul Allen IV and Buddi3 Da Gawd on 1st Sky in the morning on Nov. 8 to talk about his cover story in this month's issue of The Reader, "The Tiff with TIF." Tax increment financing is the city's greatest tool to incentivize private development, but some wonder how fair the system is. This show was produced by Paul Allen IV, Buddi3 Da Gawd and Richard Lewis III at Webberized studios north of downtown Omaha.
Oct 25, 2021
Taking Omaha for a ride: is our transit system working for everyone?
If you don't own a car in Omaha, getting to work, buying groceries and navigating the city becomes a lot harder. Over the summer of 2021, The Reader tasked reporter Addie Costello to ride every route in the city. From Florence to Bellevue, Westroads to Downtown, she talked with riders to hear their stories and ask a central question: is Omaha's transit system working for the people who need it most? The results are mixed. The buses are clean, but they're also usually empty. They get most people where they need to go, but people still need to use rideshare apps to fill in the gaps. And while Omaha's transit system is underfunded compared to nearby cities, it's attracting new "choice" riders which can help strengthen the service. But everyone, from riders to administrators, agrees on this: there's work that needs to be done. ----more---- This podcast was produced and edited by Addie Costello. The theme music is by Jon Rix and Chris Bowling.
Oct 11, 2021
How we talk about inclusivity. Part two.
This week, we pick up on our conversation with Ryan Sallans and Megan Smith-Sallans to talk about why more information doesn't always mean more understanding when it comes to our gender and sexuality. Should I say my pronouns when I'm meeting new people? How do I define myself to others? To myself? Does gender and sexuality ever get easier to understand? The answers are complicated, but Ryan and Megan offer perspective informed by a deep background of lived experience in Nebraska LGBTQ+ community. Learn more about Ryan on his website: https://ryansallans.com/ Learn more about Megan on her website: https://megansmiththerapy.com/ Host: Emma Schartz Producer: Chris Bowling Music: Jon Rix https://p0hk.bandcamp.com/ Theme music: Chris Bowling and Jon Rix
Sep 20, 2021
How we talk about inclusivity. Part one.
In the first of our two-part talk with Ryan Sallans and Megan Smith-Sallans we dive deep into their experiences as members of Nebraska's LGBTQ+ community. The conversation spans growing up in small-town Nebraska and the journey toward coming out as a trans man, to working with families with queer children. Learn more about Ryan Sallans and Megan Smith Sallans. Hosted by Emma Schartz Produced by Chris Bowling Music by Jon Rix and Chris Bowling.
Sep 20, 2021
Welcome to Reader Radio
Welcome to Reader Radio. A new podcast from The Omaha Reader, Omaha's oldest alternative newspaper. With this biweekly podcast will be talking about the stories that cover news, entertainment, food and so much more. Produced by Chris Bowling.