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Colorado Matters

Colorado Public Radio

Focusing on the state's people, issues and ideas, hear Colorado Matters on Colorado Public Radio's in-depth news station. Colorado Public Radio's daily interview show airs Monday through Friday at 10-11 a.m. and 7-8 p.m., Saturdays 7-8 p.m. and Sundays 1-2 p.m.

Focusing on the state's people, issues and ideas, hear Colorado Matters on Colorado Public Radio's in-depth news station. Colorado Public Radio's daily interview show airs Monday through Friday at 10-11 a.m. and 7-8 p.m., Saturdays 7-8 p.m. and Sundays 1-2 p.m.
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Denver, CO


Focusing on the state's people, issues and ideas, hear Colorado Matters on Colorado Public Radio's in-depth news station. Colorado Public Radio's daily interview show airs Monday through Friday at 10-11 a.m. and 7-8 p.m., Saturdays 7-8 p.m. and Sundays 1-2 p.m.




Colorado Public Radio Bridges Broadcast Center 7409 South Alton Court Centennial, CO 80112 800-722-4449


A Denver Man Watches Somali Horror On Social Media, Dancer's New Show Honors Her Father, A T...

Violence drove a Denver man to flee his native Somalia. Today he heads the Somali American Culture Center and watches the violence from afar, gathering aid for victims of this month’s grisly bombings in Mogadishu. Then, celebrated Denver choreographer Cleo Parker Robinson has broken a lot of barriers as a black dancer. Her late father was also a trailblazer, and he's the inspiration for her latest show. Plus, a Boulder man collects some of his best stories behind the wheel of a big rig,...

Duration: 00:48:22

Colorado Lends Firefighters And Engines To California; Asking Tourists To 'Leave No Trace...

Colorado's lending dozens of firefighters and engines to California; mental health workers to Puerto Rico; and medical examiners to Las Vegas. States often help each other out, but is the West prepared for a future with more natural disasters? Then, hikers aren't supposed to leave garbage -- or anything else -- behind on trails, but Coloradans and visitors here still do. What the state's doing to teach not just locals, but also tourists, to 'leave no trace.' And, the movies are big...

Duration: 00:47:38

The Struggle To Hire American; Assessing Landslides In Puerto Rico; Watchdog Group Shuts Down; Lo...

The push to 'Hire American' has been a drumbeat of the Trump administration and the president signed an executive order encouraging it. But for one Denver company, it's been a challenge to find workers. Then, in Puerto Rico, landslides cut off mountain communities after Hurricane Maria. Now, those communities are getting help from a team of scientists in Colorado that is mapping the slides to assist aid workers on the ground. And, as a government watchdog group in Colorado shuts down, we...

Duration: 00:48:43

Puerto Rican Hurricane Refugee In Colorado; The Stars Aren't Just Twinkling, They're...

Eight months ago, Rebecca Gutierrez and her husband bought a home in Puerto Rico, a dream that finally came true. Now, she's living a nightmare. After two massive storms and nearly two weeks without power and clean water, Gutierrez left the island. She's staying in Colorado with her niece. Then, the Colorado-built Kepler Space Telescope is giving an unexpected boost to the study of quakes in stars, or "asteroseismology." Yes, that's a thing. And later in the show, new chimes are ringing at...

Duration: 00:27:09

Why A Denver Curator Returned Nearly All Of His Museum's American Indian Artifacts, Like A S...

A scalp from the Sand Creek Massacre of 1864, where dozens of American Indians were murdered by Union soldiers, sat in the depths of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science for decades. The Cheyenne and Arapaho asked for it back, and the museum returned it, but it took years. For the current curator of the museum, the episode raised the question: Who owns the past? His new book explores the fight to reclaim American Indian culture. Later in the show, why Boulder and Denver have the biggest...

Duration: 00:26:02

Colorado Preps For An Electric-Vehicle Future; Aviation Hall of Fame Inductee; Ghoulish Halloween...

General Motors says its working toward a future with only electric vehicles. But companies have to overcome people's fear that electric cars will leave them stranded miles away from charging stations . Now Colorado's government is trying to ease drivers' "range anxiety." Then, only white pilots could fly commercial airplanes until a Supreme Court ruling in 1963. The case came out of Colorado, when Marlon DeWitt Green applied to Continental Airlines. Green will be inducted this weekend into...

Duration: 00:27:28

Boulder's Renegade Lunch Lady; Animating Van Gogh Paintings

Tater tots and nachos are out at Boulder schools. Roast chicken and brown rice are in. Chef Ann Cooper was once known as the Renegade Lunch Lady for transforming what kids eat. Now her videos teach others how to make the switch. Then, a startup that’s found a market for food that would have been thrown out. And, a film that pays tribute to Vincent Van Gogh is animated entirely by thousands of oil paintings.

Duration: 00:27:52

Doctors Try Alternatives To Opioids; A Crane Operator's View Of Booming Denver

With so many people addicted to prescription painkillers, doctors across the state are experimenting with other ways to manage pain. The physician leading this effort got involved because he realized he was part of the problem. Then, health reporter John Daley on alternatives to opiates in the dentist's office. Later in the show: It's easy to lose count of the cranes on Denver's skyline. Find out what it's like to work in one every day.

Duration: 00:28:41

Redlining Shapes Denver Gentrification; Managing Wild Horses; New Colorado Climatologist

There used to be neighborhoods in Denver where you could not get a home loan. The policy, called redlining, was racist, but it still affects Denver's neighborhoods.. Then, only two animals have ever been protected by Congress by name. The first was the bald eagle and the second was the wild horse. Investigative journalist Dave Phillips shares his journey into "Wild Horse Country," which is also the name of his new book. And, warm and sunny one day, snow the next...Colorado weather has...

Duration: 00:47:33

John Denver Died 20 Years Ago. His Music Still Brings People To Colorado

Fans of John Denver are gathering in Aspen to celebrate his life. Denver died 20 years ago this week. His song about Colorado, "Rocky Mountain High," was a hit and eventually became the state's second song. Today, Colorado Matters follows John Denver’s rise to stardom and the frustration felt by some Coloradans that his song led too many people to come to the state. We’ll also meet Denver’s longtime bodyguard and meditation instructor.

Duration: 00:47:31

Solar Home Innovations; Ski Season Forecast; Coors Heir's Death; Remembering Tom Petty

A temporary village has popped up near Denver International Airport, with completely solar homes built by college students and sponsored by the federal government. A team from the University of Denver built a home with a wall covered in moss. Then, with the possibility of snow hitting the Front Range by Monday, a meteorologist offers a ski season forecast. And, a Coors heir was killed in a botched kidnapping in 1960. A new book tells the tale of the manhunt for his brilliant but bumbling...

Duration: 00:47:51

Secret Lives Of Bugs; New Holiday Honors Rocky Mountain Oysters

You may think twice about squishing bugs after hearing today's show. Denver science writer David MacNeal says insects help people solve murders, cure diseases and design better buildings. His appreciation runs deep: MacNeal fed his blood to bed bugs in the name of science. Then, the metro area's booming population leads to a fight over growth in a Denver suburb. And, The Denver Post’s food writer scoffs at the sheer number of food holidays, but she got a new one created in honor of an...

Duration: 00:46:42

Former GOP Lawmaker Helped Create, Now Defends Insurance Exchange; Lesbian Author 'Refocuses...

Open enrollment for the Affordable Care Act begins in less than a month, at a time when the future of Obamacare is uncertain. We get the long view from the Republican lawmaker who helped create Colorado's insurance exchange. Then, what happened when the daughter of a Focus On The Family executive came out of the closet. And, scientists brought in beetles to get rid of a pesky plant called the tamarisk that invades riverbanks. Now, the beetles have spread beyond where they were expected to...

Duration: 00:48:15

A Coloradan Helps Her Family in Puerto Rico; Colorado Businesses Tire Of Congested Roads; Support...

As many Puerto Ricans try to flee the U.S. territory after Hurricane Maria, a Denver woman plans to move back to help with recovery. Then, Colorado businesses are sick of congested roads, according to the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce. They want a new source of funds, and say they won't wait for the state legislature any longer. What voters across Colorado might get if they vote to raise the sales tax. Plus, what makes this week's special session of the legislature, special? And, a...

Duration: 00:47:49

Transit Agency Boss On Continuing Rail Problems; A Mom Grapples With Her Son's Addiction

The Denver area's transit system, RTD, faces continued delays in opening a commuter rail line that should have started a year ago. The problem is linked to longstanding technical issues with the train that serves Denver International Airport. The agency’s general manager, Dave Genova, talks about those problems, and whether a legislative error could prompt service cuts across the system. Then, Cyndee Rae Lutz’s son started using drugs in high school. Now she helps other families recognize...

Duration: 00:48:08

Did 'The Jetsons' Lie? Fuel Companies' Impact on Climate Change; Floodwaters And A...

Some of the new technology at people's homes now seems right out of "The Jetsons." Denver Startup Week explains what domestic convenience will look like in the future. Then, new research into exactly how much oil and gas companies are responsible for rising sea levels. And, floodwaters, like those in Colorado four years ago, are connected to the spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria. Also, scientists may have figured out a way to get around around zero gravity. Then, Curious Theater's...

Duration: 00:48:12

Snuffing Out Wildfires With 'Wetter' Water; Using A Soft Robot To Land On Asteroids; Pa...

Aerial firefighting often stops at night because it's dangerous to maneuver in the dark, although nighttime conditions can be really good for fighting wildfires. We hear about a center in Colorado that's figuring out how to keep these aircraft flying safely. Then, spacecraft could refuel without returning to earth if they could mine asteroids -- but landing on those bodies is hard, so a Colorado scientist dreamed up a squishy robot to make it easier. And, Papa Dia has helped countless...

Duration: 00:47:43

Why Jails Are Overcrowded; Mining Asteroids; Drawing Dinosaurs

Today, what's behind the overcrowding and what the state's going to do about it. Then, a Colorado scientist trying to catch an asteroid in a net, and use it to fuel a spacecraft. Also, it may not be as common as postpartum depression, but new moms can also struggle with obsessive compulsive disorder. Plus, an artist from Grand Junction who draws dinosaurs, and is a giant in her field.

Duration: 00:48:08

Four-Day School Weeks Common In Colorado; Remembering Author Kent Haruf

Three-day weekends are the new reality for students in nearly half of Colorado's school districts. Tight budgets have led to shorter school weeks, and hourly staff having their hours cut. But there's some evidence it hasn't hurt student performance. Then, the late Colorado author Kent Haruf didn't live to see it, but Robert Redford and Jane Fonda are playing characters he created. His last book, "Our Souls At Night," is now a movie.

Duration: 00:47:03

Gov. Hickenlooper's Déjà Vu With Latest GOP Health Care Plan; Why An Army Ranger Turned Bank...

What would the latest plan to repeal and replace Obamacare mean for Colorado? The governor gives his take, plus shares what he's willing to sacrifice to lure Amazon's second headquarters. Then, a respected Colorado teen joins the Army and becomes an elite Army Ranger. But in his final hours before shipping to Iraq, he didn't hug his family or girlfriend. He robbed a bank. A new book explores why. And, a competition to make hospital food taste better. Finally, the second annual Supernova...

Duration: 00:47:47

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