Issues and Ideas

Issues and Ideas is a show that features a wide variety of voices sharing their thoughts and perspectives about local people, issues and events on the Central Coast. You might hear a policy maker discussing new regulation, an artist sharing his creative process, an entrepreneur exploring sustainable business practices, or an author talking about her latest book.

Regular contributors and segments include: Greta Mart with KCBX News, Stephen DeLuque and Crissa Hewitt's Ears On Art, travel correspondent Tom Wilmer's Journeys of Discovery, Brian Reynolds, Marisa Waddell, and others.

Ways to Connect

County of San Luis Obispo/SLOCEA

San Luis Obispo County is preparing for an employee strike. For the first time in its history, SLOCEA—the county’s largest employee union—plans to strike Tuesday, December 11 through Friday, December 14. The county and union have not been able to come to an agreement over current and future wages and benefits. KCBX News recently sat down with San Luis Obispo County’s manager and met with a SLOCEA member to learn more.

Thomas Wilmer

The tall ships Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain are in port in Morro Bay, California until December 18. Join correspondent Tom Wilmer aboard the Lady Washington for a visit with Captain D.B. Smith, 3rd Mate Eric Dowell, and David Livingstone, chief mate aboard the Hawaiian Chieftain. 

Fort Hunter Liggett

Federal firefighters based at Fort Hunter Liggett in Monterey County are trained to respond to a wide array of emergencies, including range, forest and structure fires, medical emergencies, aircraft incidents and mutual aid response to the surrounding region in Lockwood Valley. Correspondent Tom Wilmer visits with firefighters Greg Fryer and Jason Hall.

On this week's show, we spoke with a local doctor about his personal experience as a care provider within the American healthcare system. 

awareawakealive.org

On December 2, 2008, 18-year-old Carson Starkey was involved in a fraternity ritual at San Luis Obispo's California Polytechnic State University. As part of an iniation hazing, he was compelled to drink large quantities of alcohol. After becoming unresponsive, instead of taking Starkey to the hospital, Sigma Alpha Epsilon members left him to sleep it off on a mattress, out of fear of getting themselves in trouble. Starkey never woke up.

Caitlin Cocuzzo

Up next, we learn about an innovative high school class in San Luis Obispo County. KCBX News invited a teacher and two students from Central Coast New Tech High School to the studio for a discussion about learning civics and government, by starting from scratch.

Playing With Food: The Spanish grape varietal

Nov 26, 2018
Fr. Ian Delinger

There is no doubting the Spanish influence on California. The indelible imprint of Junipero Serra and his Spanish missionaries is everywhere, including much of our Spanish-native flora. Yet, our wine industry is dominated by French grape varietals. But that is changing here on the Central Coast. Come along with Father Ian as he discovers more about the Spanish grape varietals.

Playing With Food: Traipsing the tailgating trail

Oct 29, 2018
Fr Ian M Delinger

The smell of BBQ, the wafts of smoke, pounding music and a sea of green: it's the pre-game tailgate party at Cal Poly. Where did this American tradition come from, and what makes it so special?

Father Ian traipses the tailgating trail to experience this festive way of Playing With Food.

Have you heard of bitcoin and blockchain? Learn how blockchain relates to bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, and its potential for changing money, business, and beyond. Join Brian Reynolds for an informative conversation with Marvin Byrd, a senior security engineer and a graduate of Cal Poly.

Fr Ian M Delinger

A fancy festival fruit – Etrog – is grown right here on the Central Coast. Used in the Jewish festival of Sukkot, the Etrog has deep symbolism. But can it be utilized in the kitchen? Fr Ian Delinger experiments with Etrog on Playing With Food, part of Issues & Ideas.

Issues & Ideas: Marketing SLO County

Sep 18, 2018
Courtesy of Visit SLO CAL website

San Luis Obispo County has special taxing district dedicated solely to attracting tourism to the area. Visit SLO CAL is a non-profit focused on branding the county as a travel destination for people around the world. KCBX's Greta Mart spoke with Chuck Davison, president and CEO at Visit SLO CAL, about what visitors like about SLO County, what they don't like, and when to draw the line on too much tourism.

Rockford Peaches

Correspondent Katya Cengel reports from Rockford, Illinois, where she visits with two women who played baseball for the Rockford Peaches during WW II—chronicled in the Hollywood hit "A League of Their Own."

Greta Mart/KCBX

The San Luis Obispo County jail has been under scrutiny for several years over inmate deaths inside the facility. The issue came to a head in 2017 after the death of Andrew Holland, a mentally ill inmate who had been tied to a restraint chair for almost two days. About 10 days ago another inmate inside the jail committed suicide.

EOA visits with local glass artist Paula Radke. Based in Morro Bay, Paula has been creating with glass for several decades. Her work often involves bead making, fusing, and slumping, and she has recently developed a new product she calls "glass clay." She opens her new retail outlet this September on the Embarcadero in Morro Bay.

Tyler Pratt/KCBX News

In San Luis Obispo County, 97 percent of Cambria’s Coast Unified School District teachers have voted “no confidence” in the district’s superintendent. The teachers cast their vote earlier in the summer, and delivered it to the school board last month. The Coast Unified board of trustees held a special meeting Thursday night to evaluate the superintendent’s performance, and to consider whether to continue her employment. But first, they heard from a packed room of teachers, staff and parents.

Central Coast Writers Conference

There's a conference taking place at the end of the month in San Luis Obispo designed for those studying the art of writing. Whether you are a writer in search of a publisher or have a great idea for a movie, the 34th annual Central Coast Writers Conference is taking place September 27-29 at Cuesta College. KCBX's Greta Mart met with conference director Teri Bayus to learn more about the three-day event.

Local Connections/Cal Poly

As Cal Poly gets ready for a new school year, the administration is letting new students and their families know about an orientation program underway for a few years called Local Connections. It's aimed at helping acclimate out-of-state students from all walks of life to university life far away from home and here on the Central Coast.

Cuesta College

The new school year is already underway at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo County. The community college went through a leadership change this summer when the school's former president, Dr. Gil Stork, retired after half a century with the school. After a nationwide search, Dr. Jill Stearns became Cuesta College’s seventh superintendent and president in July. Dr. Stearns recently sat down with KCBX's Greta Mart and Tyler Pratt to discuss her background and her vision for the school's future.

Screaming For Ice Cream

Aug 29, 2018
A taste of the delicious ice cream from the Scoop Truck in Harmony, CA (pop. 18)
Fr Ian M Delinger

It’s summer and it’s hot outside. Ice cream is the summer favorite. But where did it come from? How did it impact society? And is there anything new? Ice cream’s versatility and utility goes beyond anyone’s imagination. Playing With Food will have you Screaming For Ice Cream!

Join host Brian Reynolds as he discusses neuroscience and neuroengineering with Dr. Bridget Queenan, Neuroscientist and Associate Director of UCSB’s Brain Initiative and Research Director of the UCSB Nanolab. Dr. Q discusses the highly creative work in the STEM professions and how public tax dollars investing in science and technology provide cures, solutions, and discoveries that make us safe, strong, and happy.

Tyler Pratt/KCBX News

As part of our Central Coast Curious series, we received this question from Juliane McAdam: "Every time I drive past the San Luis Obispo Cemetery on Higuera, I wonder what the giant pyramid is all about. Is it a tomb or a monument?" KCBX News wondered the same thing and around the same time, so did reporter Andrew Sheeler at the San Luis Obispo Tribune. Sheeler reported on the history of San Luis Obispo's iconic pyramid for his series, "That's SLO Weird," and we invited Sheeler to the KCBX studio to tell us all about it.

Vagabond Ink

A Saturday night music event for your radar- if you're in San Luis Obispo Saturday on August 11th, there will be an installment in the For The Folks benefit concert series at Bang the Drum Brewery. The showcase works to present emerging bands in new ways for audiences. Each show is crafted to the style of music in order to create the best experience possible for performers and an audience. For example, Saturday's show has been billed as having an 'everybody dance' atmosphere. KCBX's Tyler Pratt sat down with For the Folk's organizer Ben Bellizzi to talk about what the music scene is like on the Central Coast and why it's well situated for someone to discover a wide variety of music.

Joe Kourakis is a Cal Poly professor emeritus. On this month's Ears on Art episodes, Kourakis the conversation is about his architecture design concepts and his sculpture.

Jeremy P. Jacobs/E&E News

Where does the Central Coast get its water, our most fundamental of needs? Some comes in the form of rain filling up local reservoirs; some from the State Water Project, a long system of pipes and canals that carry melted snow from the Sierra Nevada mountains to the central and southern part of the state. And a significant amount comes from underground, pumped up via wells.

Until just four years ago, groundwater was totally unregulated in California. But extended droughts made it clear that Californians needed to figure how to manage the underground water supply.

Playing With Food: In the kitchen gardens

Jul 25, 2018
Fr Ian M Delinger

Gardens across the Central Coast are busting with fruits and vegetables! Just as you might be utilizing your backyard bounty, so too are some bigger operations. Father Ian visits kitchen gardens that feed large groups of people in a college cafeteria and an upscale restaurant. Discover how garden-to-table is improving the way we eat out on Playing With Food.

Are you a fan of audiobooks? Audiobooks are the fastest growing segment in the digital publishing industry. Join host Brian Reynolds as he talks with professional audiobook narrator Jim Seybert. Jim Seybert has narrated over 30 nonfiction audiobooks, available on Audible and other platforms.

This week 'Ears on Art" visits with Los Osos-based artist Ted Emrick. Emrick is a sculptor working in a variety of materials, with glass being one of his favorites. He loves to teach and volunteers at Morro Bay High School, where last year he helped students create one of the cows for the Cow Parade, an international public art exhibit that features fiberglass cows painted, modified and decorated by local artists.

Thomas Wilmer

Correspondent Tom Wilmer visits with Will King, design engineer at bicycle part manufacturer SRAM’s San Luis Obispo R&D high-tech facility. King talks with Tom about SRAM’s open house on July 20 and its involvement with World Bicycle Relief, a nonprofit organization mobilizing people through "The Power of Bicycles."

This month Ears on Art visits George Jercich George, a glass blower and sculptor who lives in Los Osos. In 1976 he was hired as a lecturer in the Art and Design Department at Cal Poly. He was asked to develop a glass program which he did very successfully. Jercich provides some interesting history of the local and national ground swell of glass programs in university art departments.

The human struggle--especially for young girls--to fit in and to embrace one's unique gifts is very real. Local author Eldonna Edwards explores this struggle in her new book, This I Know. Issues and Ideas host Brian Reynolds talks with Eldonna Edwards this month about her novel that is garnering a buzz in the literary world, including a June book club selection by syndicated radio host Delilah. Set in a small Midwest town in the late 1960s and helmed by an unforgettable young protagonist, This I Know is a luminous coming-of-age story from an astonishing new voice.

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