KZMU News features grassroots, independent journalism broadcast from the heart of Moab, Utah. A daily newscast with reliable coverage, local voices, and reporting that empowers community.

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793 episodes

Wednesday August 3, 2022

“On YouTube, there’s a lot of information about Moab…but it’s all in English. So, I want to show people who [speak] Spanish how the life is here and the places they can visit if they want to come here.” Today on the news, we speak with local Mónica Piñera about making her Spanish-language videos on ‘La aventura en Moab.’ In them, she features popular local sights as well as practical information for Spanish speakers about resources and events. Plus, a conversation with the CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains about an expected influx of patients crossing state lines for reproductive care. And later, much of the Southwest is expected to get drenched during August according to new forecasts. // Show Notes: // Photo: Local resident Mónica Piñera hosts ‘La aventura en Moab,’ a Spanish language YouTube channel about the Moab area. She started the channel when she noticed a lack of attention on Spanish-speakers in our region. Courtesy Mónica Piñera // La aventura en Moab

Aug 03
Tuesday August 2, 2022

Moab’s latest sculpture installation comes from Justin Tyler Tate, the MARC’s 2022 artist-in-residence. Made of materials sourced from the local waste stream, the piece is incredibly interactive and intended to emphasize play as a source of power. “I like giving people an opportunity to embrace their curiosity,” says Tate. “Because that’s what I like doing.” Plus, we speak with a scientist working on a new solution for uranium-contaminated groundwater. And later, a report on the death of a Hollywood legend with deep roots in our region. // Show Notes: // Photo: Artist Justin Tyler Tate with an interactive installation created with material sourced from Moab’s waste stream. The piece is currently at Lions Park. KZMU/Molly Marcello // Moab Arts Re-Use Residency // Justin Tyler Tate // Aspen Public Radio: Bob Rafelson was passionate about Aspen, filmmaking

Aug 02
Monday August 1, 2022

Utah Governor Spencer Cox released another chapter of Utah’s water plan last week. It aims to balance water conservation, agriculture and state growth. Plus, the FBI published a ‘first of its kind’ list of almost 180 missing Indigenous people throughout the Navajo Nation. And later, the climate crisis has been the cause of lower stream flows in rivers and creeks throughout the West. Our radio partners report on how this changing ecosystem is affecting boreal toads in Colorado wilderness. // Show Notes: // Photo: Samantha Alford weighs a boreal toad in a plastic bag as it attempts to escape. Toads are indicator species, which means they can tell researchers a lot about the health of the environment. Caroline Llanes / Aspen Public Radio // UPR: Utah releases third chapter of state water action plan // FBI: List of Native Americans Verified as Missing Throughout New Mexico and the Navajo Nation // Aspen Public Radio: Small boreal toads in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness face big challenges

Aug 01
Friday July 29, 2022

Visitors to Arches have had some time to try out the national park’s new reservation system, put in place to reduce the crowding impacting visitors’ experience. Today on the news, we speak with a park representative about some recent survey results and the future of the pilot timed entry system. Plus, a Wyoming judge issued a temporary restraining order this week, blocking the state’s trigger ban on most abortions from going into effect. Utah’s own abortion trigger ban continues to be on pause as a lawsuit against it makes its way through the courts. And later, mountain towns in Colorado have seen an influx of luxury tourism and housing development. Our radio partners report on one town that has largely avoided that fate. // Plus, the Weekly News Reel! Sophia Fisher of The Times-Independent talks fire and flood, monsoon season returning, the nation’s new mental heath crisis line and Utah’s new OHV course. Alison Harford of The Moab Sun News discusses this week’s record-breaking water height in Mill Creek, a local man winning a prize at a famous trail ride and the return of Canyonlands Native Plant Society. // Show Notes: // Photo: Arches National Park over Memorial Day Weekend 2021. The park received feedback that a visitor’s Memorial Day Weekend 2022 experience was ‘night and day’ better than previous years because of the pilot timed entry system. Credit Arches National Park // Arches National Park: FAQ on the Timed Entry System // US Travel Association (7/11) Letter re: NPS Reservation Systems // Weekly News Reel Mentions: // The Times-Independent: Fire & Flood // The Times-Independent: After a lapse, the monsoons are back // The Times-Independent: Meet the nation’s new mental health crisis line // The Times-Independent (Opinion): What it’s like to work at a crisis helpline // The Times-Independent: A peek inside Utah’s new OHV course, test // Moab Sun News: Record water height in Mill Creek flash flood // Moab Sun News: Local man wins prize at famous rugged trail ride // Moab Sun News: Looking out for native plants – Canyonlands Native Plant Society ramps back up

Jul 29
Thursday July 28, 2022

Dispersed camping has exploded on Bureau of Land Management lands across Grand County. And when visitors spread out, looking for that perfect private campsite, they can encroach on natural resources like native vegetation and wildlife habitat. The BLM is now looking at implementing more camping rules for three places: Utah Rims, Two Rivers, and the Labyrinth Rims/Gemini Bridges areas. Today on the news, we speak with advocates of this plan about why ‘camping anywhere you want’ is no longer viable in Grand County. // Show Notes: // Photo: A dispersed campsite in Grand County. The BLM is considering limiting camping to designated sites in the Utah Rims, Two Rivers, and the Labyrinth Rims/Gemini Bridges areas. // Utah Rims BLM Planning: // Two Rivers BLM Planning: // Labyrinth Rims/Gemini Bridges Planning: // The Deseret News (May 1989) Moab Dislikes Smell Of Success

Jul 28
Wednesday July 27, 2022

Despite challenges due to weather and supply shortages, clean-up is on track at the Uranium Mill Tailings Remedial Action site near Moab. Today on the news, we speak with the federal cleanup director on what’s been done so far and plans for the future. Plus, heavy rainfall over last year’s burn area in the La Sal Mountains sent a debris flow of rocks, mud and vegetation through the town creeks. According to preliminary data from the USGS, Mill Creek was traveling over 1,000 CFS on Tuesday evening. And later, reports on the James Webb Space Telescope and Utah’s involvement in the new 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. // Show Notes: // Photo: The Moab UMTRA Project, where 16 million tons of uranium tailings are being moved away from the Colorado River. Credit US Department of Energy // Moab UMTRA Project // USGS: Mill Creek At Sheley Tunnel // USGS: Pack Creek At Pack Creek Road Bridge S // KUER: Utah astronomers expect a lot of future surprises from NASA’s Webb Space Telescope // 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline

Jul 27
Tuesday July 26, 2022

Photojournalist Luis Sinco’s career at the Los Angeles Times has spanned earthquakes, war and wildfire. But recently, a conversation with his adult children inspired a unique solo project. “I was just talking to them…about what they knew about where water comes from and what they knew about the Colorado River,” Sinco says. “My kids are pretty smart. I was kind of stunned that they didn’t know very much about [it].” Today on the news, we speak with Sinco about photographing the Colorado River Basin from it’s headwaters in Colorado to its delta in Mexico and what he hopes westerners can learn from these visuals. Plus, states in the river's Upper Basin aren’t ready to commit to federal water conservation targets. // Photo: Luis Sinco, photojournalist with the LA Times, in the Mexicali Valley of the Colorado River Delta. Sinco’s project “The Colorado River: Where The West Quenches Its Thirst,” documents the river’s basin from its headwaters to its delta. Credit Ian James / Los Angeles Times // LA Times: The Colorado River – Where The West Quenches Its Thirst // LA Times: Angered by climate denial, a Times photographer embarked on a watershed journey // KUNC: Responding to federal pressure, Upper Colorado River states seek to revive conservation program

Jul 26
Monday July 25, 2022

A mining company wants to extract lithium from old oil and gas wells in Grand County. Used in electronics such as batteries, demand for the metal is expected to grow. Companies are exploring deposits across the country, including the Paradox Basin in Southeastern Utah. Today on the news, the potential - and risks - of using old oil infrastructure in the transition to a greener economy. Plus, an annual Ute athletic tradition is coming back to our region. And, a recent wildfire left a smoky taste and smell in a Colorado town’s water. // Show Notes: // Photo: Dead Horse Point State Park. A-1 Lithium has submitted a proposal to the BLM a few miles outside the state park. Credit Dave Hensley // BLM: A-1 Lithium Incorporated Mineral Exploration Project // Anson Resources: Paradox Basin Brine Project // KUNC: Smoke in the water – Wildfires have lasting effects on drinking supply long after they’re put out

Jul 25
Friday July 22, 2022

On the south side of Green River, there’s a stand-out parcel of land. It’s where old cottonwood trees jut into the sky and rock-lined gravel pathways snake around a play tunnel made of stumps. A place where kids can go wild on a tire swing. It’s the new Pearl Baker Park & Outdoor Classroom. Community members and volunteers celebrated the soft opening of the park this week, as well as ‘the woman, the myth, the legend’ of its namesake. // Plus, the Weekly News Reel! Doug McMurdo of The Times-Independent discusses the county pursuing its own workforce housing ordinance, Grand backing out of a solo opioid lawsuit and an effort to boost air travel to Moab. Alison Harford of the Moab Sun News discusses Moab’s experience with the nationwide nursing shortage, upcoming Pioneer Day events and the library’s expansion of teen programming. // Show Notes: // Photo: Kids test out the new tire swing at Pearl Baker Park & Outdoor Classroom. The park will provide a new gathering and learning space on Green River’s south side. KZMU/Molly Marcello // Epicenter: Pearl Baker Park - Year 1 // Weekly News Reel Mentions: // The Times-Independent: Seeking to avoid city’s mire, county pursues its own workforce housing ordinance // The Times-Independent: County backs out of solo opioid lawsuit // The Times-Independent: Taxes, grant could boost air travel to Moab // Moab Sun News: Moab shares in nationwide nursing shortage // Moab Sun News: Celebrate Pioneer Day on July 24 with Moab’s museums // Moab Sun News: Library expands teen programming

Jul 22
Thursday July 21, 2022

There’s a nursing shortage in the country. And that applies to Moab, where we have our own challenges too. Today on the news, we speak with the CEO of Moab Regional Hospital about the situation and potential solutions for attracting more workers into health care. Plus, the seven Colorado River basin states have until mid-August to drastically cut their water use. Federal officials say that’s necessary to keep the river’s giant reservoirs from going empty. If state leaders fail to come up with a plan, they could be facing a federal crackdown. // Show Notes: // McKinsey & Company (May 2022): Assessing the lingering impact of COVID-19 on the nursing shortage // KZMU (December 2021): Nursing in Moab KUNC: On the Colorado River the feds carry a big stick. Will the states get hit?

Jul 21
Wednesday July 20, 2022

The Utah Investigative Journalism Project is a non-profit that provides public-service reporting and education throughout the state. They partner with publications to publish in-depth stories holding those in power accountable. Today on the news, we speak with founder Eric Peterson, who was recently in Moab. Plus, nearly 400 tourism industry groups sent a letter to the National Park Service wanting changes to reservation systems. And, a fire broke out at Hoover Dam on Tuesday morning – but was quickly put out. // Show Notes: // Photo: Sunrise panorama from the La Sal Mountains Viewpoint at Arches National Park. Tourism industry groups want a more international tourist-friendly national park reservation system. Credit NPS/Neal Herbert // The Utah Investigative Journalism Project // KUER: Utah groups want a more international tourist-friendly national park reservation system // KUNC: Fire at Hoover Dam extinguished, cause still unknown

Jul 20
Tuesday July 19, 2022

For about a year, locals seeking information about marginalized communities have had a safe, comfortable community space to check out resources. Literally. The Moab Pride Library lives in a shady nook at Adobe Garden Apothecary. It’s a space where people peruse everything from queer literature to Black and Indigenous history. Moab Pride organizer Desirae Miller took us on a tour of the library for our latest audio portrait. // Photo: The Moab Pride Library with local organizer Desirae Miller. “Books take you to different worlds, and you get to tap into so many different realities that you really can't do in a rural town,” says Miller. “…And that is what Moab Pride strives to be able to provide – these safe spaces in a rural town where you otherwise maybe wouldn't feel seen.” // If you think there’s someone or even some place that we should profile for our next audio portrait, please reach out to

Jul 19
Monday July 18, 2022

Citing concerns for human safety, Wyoming Game and Fish Department officials killed one of the offspring of famed grizzly bear ‘399’ near Jackson last week. Grizzly 399 is known for raising multiple litters not far from busy roadways in Grand Teton National Park. Our radio partners report on how one of them got into trouble. Plus, conservationists are enlisting scientists to help manage a historic Colorado homestead and ranch as partial wildlife habitat. // Show Notes: // Photo: Susan Panjabi (second from left), a botanist with the Colorado Natural Heritage Program, works with a group of volunteers to identify a small leafy plant during a three-day ‘bioblitz’ on the Coffman Ranch near Carbondale, Colorado. The bioblitz is part of an ongoing effort to understand the biodiversity on the 141-acre property before opening it to the public. Eleanor Bennett/Aspen Public Radio // KHOL: Offspring of Grizzly 399 killed after conflicts // Aspen Public Radio: Scientists and local experts ‘listen to the land’ before opening Coffman Ranch to the public

Jul 18
Friday July 15, 2022

Utah is experiencing more wildfires in the midst of drought and high temperatures. And more of those blazes are being caused by people as our population grows. The job of fire investigators has never been more important. They track down the spark that can lead to prosecutions and their work provides crucial data for studying fire causes. Today on the news, we speak with investigators about their large caseload. Plus, a multi-agency coalition is planning a network of electric vehicle charging stations along rural roads in Utah and other Western states. And, Montana youth are suing the state over energy policies they say are hurting their health and environment. // Plus, the Weekly News Reel! The Times-Independent’s Sophia Fisher discusses a local man’s death after being swept away by the Colorado River. She also highlights special events permitting, rising costs affecting a planned roundabout and a casting call for the Kevin Costner project. The Moab Sun News’ Alison Harford discusses an initiative trying to bring local foods to schools, Community Rebuilds offering a week-long workshop and an upcoming ‘mystery’ event from the MARC’s new artist-in-residence. // Show Notes: // Photo: Burnt trees near the Pack Creek day use area, where fire investigators determined a 9,000 acre fire was started in June 2021. Lately, Utah’s investigators have been busier than ever. KZMU/Molly Marcello // Weekly News Reel Mentions: // The Times-Independent: Local man dies after being swept away by the Colorado // The Times-Independent: City takes harder look at special event permitting // The Times-Independent: Rising costs impact planned roundabout // The Times-Independent: Costner film holds casting call July 29, 30 at Star Hall // Moab Sun News: Bringing local foods to schools, statewide // Moab Sun News: Natural building essentials – Community Rebuilds offers week-long workshop // Moab Sun News: Learn something new with the MARC artist in residence

Jul 15
Thursday July 14, 2022

Mix some bagpipes, drums and dancing together and you’ve likely got a Scottish, Irish, or Welsh cultural event. You’ve also got some noise. This is the central issue with the recent debate over the 2022 Scots on the Rocks Festival, which has spurred the city council to revise their special events permitting criteria when it comes to noise and its ‘intensity.’ Plus, new research by the Utah Women & Leadership Project looks into the economic, health-related and overall wellness status of Indigenous women in Utah. And, clean air advocates are taking the EPA to court over smog levels in Colorado. // Show Notes: // Moab City: Special Event Criteria (July 12, 2022) // Moab City: Findings of Fact, Scots on the Rocks (July 12, 2022) // Sounds in the Today’s Episode: ‘Pipes and Drums’ by strongbot ‘Pipe and Drum’ by inchadney // Utah Public Radio: Study finds Utah indigenous women lack clean water and internet access

Jul 14
Wednesday July 13, 2022

The nation's first commercial-scale oil shale mine and processing plant in the Uinta Basin, near the confluence of the Green and White Rivers, is in the planning stages. That kind of mining takes a lot of water, roughly four barrels of water for every barrel of oil. Now, a conservation group is protesting who should have access to a 10-million-gallon-per-day water right impacting the Green River. Plus, the City of Green River is receiving $500,000 in federal funding to assess abandoned properties for contaminants in the downtown corridor, including old gas stations and a historic bank building. This is the first step in potential redevelopment. And, the Western Fire Chiefs Association launched a mobile-friendly map to provide the latest information on wildfires across the region. // Show Notes: // Photo: Water from the Green River will be used for a planned commercial-scale oil shale mine and processing plant in the Uinta Basin. Credit: Bob Wick, Bureau of Land Management. // Utah Division of Water Rights: July 19 Hearing Info // Grand Canyon Trust: Utah Water Deal Siphons Colorado River Tributary // Grand Canyon Trust: Critical Habitat Map For Endangered Fish Near Enefit Oil Shale Development // EPA (May 2022): Biden Administration Announces $254 Million To Tackle Polluted Brownfield Sites

Jul 13
Tuesday July 12, 2022

On a recent summer afternoon near the base of the La Sal Mountains, Pack Creek babbles along as thunderclouds threaten to send more water into the drainage. For the first time, there’s a device that can measure the height of this creek to let locals know if it’s likely to flood. Water managers, nonprofits and local government are also hoping the new Pack Creek Stream Gage will provide a missing puzzle piece of information about our local water system. Plus, Yellowstone National Park and surrounding areas were hit by historic flooding while our region remains in a severe drought. A report on how these two extremes can occur side-by-side. // Show Notes: // Photo: A USGS crew installs the Pack Creek Stream Gage on June 16th. An inter-agency effort, the gage will monitor the surface water of Pack Creek, helping with flood warnings and water system study. // USGS: Pack Creek At Pack Creek Road Bridge

Jul 12
Monday July 11, 2022

The U.S. Department of Energy is building up the country’s strategic uranium reserve. That’s meant to provide a reliable supply of the material for energy and defense. Today on the news, we speak with a regional uranium producer on what the policy means for business. Plus, legislation to recognize same-sex marriage is back before the Navajo Nation Council. And later, our radio partners interview regional author Craig Childs about his new book, “Tracing Time: Seasons of Rock Art on the Colorado Plateau.” // Show Notes: // Photo: Energy Fuels’ White Mesa uranium mill. A company spokesperson says the current build-up of a federal uranium reserve will not likely result in new mining. Dom Smith/EcoFlight // Mountain West News Bureau: Navajo Nation again considers legislation to repeal same-sex marriage ban // KVNF: Craig Childs discusses his new book about rock art on the Colorado plateau

Jul 11
Friday July 8, 2022

Earlier this week Moab’s Arches New Hope Pregnancy Center was vandalized. The organization offers a host of services to pregnant women. They also call themselves pro-life. Plus, a Utah lawmaker will reintroduce a bill that will broaden the list of individuals a victim of rape or sexual abuse can legally report to other than law enforcement agencies. And, many women are now more likely to travel across state lines for reproductive care. //Plus, the Weekly News Reel! The Times-Independent’s Sophia Fisher discusses Four Corners’ move to Nob Hill, a ‘weird year’ for the local economy and a tourism marketing partnership. Moab Sun News’ Alison Harford covers a reproductive rights march in Moab, a six-year old motocross sensation and the annual La Sal Mountain butterfly count. // Show Notes: // Photo: Moab’s Arches New Hope Pregnancy Center, a faith-based organization, was vandalized earlier this week. KZMU/Justin Higginbottom // Weekly News Reel Mentions: // The Times-Independent: Four Corners Behavioral Health moves to Nob Hill // The Times-Independent: The economy in 2022 – ‘It’s been a weird year’ // The Times-Independent: Moab’s tourism marketing evolves with strategic partnership // Moab Sun News: Moabites march in support of reproductive rights // Moab Sun News: La Sal’s six-year-old sensation is ready to ride // Moab Sun News: Annual butterfly count finds 26 species in La Sals

Jul 08
Thursday July 7, 2022

Moab City needs housing for the local workforce. Last fall, the city’s elected officials and staff floated a question – what if developers in certain residential zones were required to set aside a portion of their project to the local workforce? But this idea hit a major snag – concerns about private property rights infringement. We speak with the CEO of the Utah Central Association of Realtors about the ongoing negotiations. Plus, a new study provides a snapshot of the number of short-term rentals in Utah. Not surprisingly for residents, Grand County is near the top. // Show Notes: // Photo: New residential development in central Moab. Elected officials want to require future multi-family developments in certain zones include a percentage of workforce housing. The ordinance process stalled after late-stage concerns from private property rights groups. // Moab Sun News: City still developing workforce housing requirement Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute: Short-Term-Rental Inventory

Jul 07
Wednesday July 6, 2022

National Parks were big draws for tourists last year. Visitors lined up across the country to enter the National Park System more than 297 million times – up 25 percent from 2020. These visits meant a lot of spending in nearby communities like Moab. Today on the news, a report on a new study which crunches the numbers. Plus, the Southwest may be in for some drought relief this summer as monsoon season is off to a strong start. And, residents of a Colorado mobile home park are working on a statewide initiative to address water equity. // Show Notes: // NPS: 2021 National Park Visitor Spending Effects

Jul 06
Tuesday July 5, 2022

On Independence Day, protesters across the country marched for body independence in the wake of the Supreme Court decision upending the federal right to abortion. This decision allows states to drastically reduce or even outlaw abortion. Here in Moab, protesters at the Rally for Body Independence and Autonomy say they haven’t only lost a federal right – they’ve also lost a human right. // Show Notes // Photo: At least 50 people marched through downtown Moab yesterday to show support for body autonomy. Courtesy Jessica Retka // Reproductive Care Resources // Utah Abortion Fund // The Brigid Alliance // Indigenous Women Rising // KUER: Judge temporarily blocks Utah’s abortion trigger law for 14 days

Jul 05
Monday July 4, 2022

Ahh, the pool in the summertime. A place to relax, cool-off and send the kids on summer break. A local family of six can have a full day at Moab’s pool for 15 bucks. But that’s likely to change – slightly – as Moab City considers raising fees to offset a significant deficit at the Moab Recreation and Aquatic Center. Plus, squaring health and safety codes with new solutions to counter housing displacement for vulnerable locals has proved challenging for Grand County. A report on their strategy to codify long-term residential camping zones. And, a new documentary looks at how Colorado has led the way in secure voting by mail. // Show Notes // Photo: The outdoor pool at the Moab Recreation and Aquatic Center. A new feasibility study showed a 10 percent fee increase could help offset the center’s deficit. Credit MRAC // Moab Sun News: MRAC to possibly raise rates by 10% // Sounds in the MRAC story: "Ambience, Outdoor Public Pool, A.wav" by InspectorJ ( of "splashing in the pool.wav" by angeliqueperdikes of // Moab Sun News: City still developing workforce housing requirement // Free Speech TV: Democracy vs The Big Lie

Jul 04
Friday July 1, 2022

The recent flooding around Yellowstone National Park also created challenges for gateway towns like Gardner, Red Lodge and Cooke City in Montana. That includes lost homes and possibly lost livelihoods. For travelers who can no longer access the park through those towns, there’s another Montana entrance: West Yellowstone, the most popular gateway to the park. Our partners at the Mountain West News Bureau visited the community in late June. Plus, a report by Utah Public Radio on the toxic dust left from the drying Great Salt Lake. Last, our region’s long drought is putting pressure on drinking water supplies. Add in a water main break and the situation can be catastrophic. We have another report from the Mountain West News Bureau on one area that’s already under water restrictions. // And later, the Weekly News Reel where we check in with reporters on their latest stories of the Moab area. Reporter Sophia Fisher of the Times-Independent discusses local and state officials’ take on the Supreme Court decision regarding abortion rights, new construction coming to Highway 191 and Grand County's COVID status. Ali Harford of the Moab Sun News talks about efforts at educating residents on housing rights, the status of local Celtic festival Scots on the Rocks and an opportunity for locals to record oral histories with help from the Moab Museum. // Show Notes // Photo : The Montana entrance to Yellowstone, West Yellowstone, remains open to visitors after area flooding. Madelyn Beck/MWNB // Weekly News Reel Mentions: // The Times-Independent: Local, state officials weigh in on divisive Supreme Court decision // The Times-Independent: 3 UDOT projects speeding ahead // The Times-Independent: Grand’s COVID status wobbles between High, Medium // Moab Sun News: Local housing advocates receive fair housing laws training // Moab Sun News: City permits Scots on the Rocks festival at ballparks // Moab Sun News: Creating a personal history //Moab Museum oral history project

Jul 01
Thursday June 30, 2022

Primary elections favored incumbents across the state this week. And a murder has shocked a Ute Mountain Ute community in San Juan County. Also, we rebroadcast an audio portrait of the world-record holder in endurance horse racing. //Show Notes //Utah primary results: //Audio Portrait Featured Music/Sounds: ‘Night Owl’ by Broke For Free ‘Horse Whinny, Close, A.wav’ by Inspector If you have an idea for a future profile, reach out to //Photo: Moab resident Christoph Schork trains horses and people in endurance riding at his local ranch. Justin Higginbottom/KZMU

Jun 30
Wednesday June 29, 2022

The Public Media Journalists Association awarded KZMU first prize in the category of Long Documentary for a story on the impacts of the housing crisis and worker shortage in Moab. Judges reviewed over 1500 entries. Only 221 awards were given to 101 organizations. And for the first time KZMU is one of those winners. The piece is called “Welcome to Moab: A Service Story.” It was first aired last November and it shows how the housing crisis turned worker shortage is gutting employment sectors at every level in Moab. The story zeroes in on restaurants, which are arguably the most public-facing businesses in our service industry. In this sample you'll hear from restaurant employees working in Moab during a pandemic and in the busiest, longest, most harrowing of seasons. And business owners will tell you how they struggle to keep the doors open. Many thanks to Ann, Jen, Natali, Alex, Wes, Bella, Mardee, Ruth, Louis, Meghan, Jacqueline, and Cozy for sharing their stories on our airwaves and illustrating how restaurants help keep communities vibrant. Find the whole story in the notes below. //Show Notes //PMJA 2022 award winners //Full version of “Welcome to Moab: A Service Story” Note: This special contains language that has been un-beeped for the podcast. //Music and other sounds heard in today’s special: Crowded Park by TravieDoodle bar chatter by SoundsExciting FunkBox by Ketsa Way-to-West by Ketsa Chillflow ( by Makiah Beats The Journey by Audiobinger Happy-Chappy by Ketsa

Jun 29
Tuesday June 28, 2022

The Utah accent. Sometimes it can be hard to pin down or describe to those not living here. But it exists, especially in rural southern parts of the state. And new research suggests that it’s more complicated than you might think. Plus, the BLM has a new plan to replace the boardwalk at the Mill Canyon Dinosaur Tracksite. It includes safety precautions to protect the 112-million-year-old fossils while construction work is completed. And, the Forest Service is bracing for a large gathering of the Rainbow Family in Colorado. // Show Notes // Photo: Unique arches in Arches National Park. New research is studying the uniqueness of the ‘Utah accent.’ Credit National Park Service // BLM: Rebuilding the Mill Canyon Dinosaur Tracksite Trail

Jun 28
Monday June 27, 2022

Last week federal agencies and five tribes signed a historic co-management agreement for Bears Ears National Monument. Today on the news, we speak with an expert about what co-management will look like on the ground and its potential to serve as a model for other tribal stakeholders in the country. And, federal officials kicked off a new round of negotiations for long-term management of the Colorado River. Plus, hours after the US Supreme Court overturned the landmark decision that protected the right to access safe and legal abortion services, people took to the streets to register their dissent. Our partners at KGNU report from a spontaneous demonstration in Denver, Colorado. // Show Notes // Photo: Representatives from federal agencies and five tribes co-managing Bears Ears National Monument stand under its new sign. Courtesy US Interior Department // Bears Ears National Monument // KGNU: Denver Reacts To SCOTUS Ruling on Abortion Rights

Jun 27
Friday June 24, 2022

Today the Supreme Court overturned the fundamental right to abortion established nearly 50 years ago in Roe v Wade. This reversal leaves states free to drastically reduce or even outlaw abortion. Thirteen states, including Utah, have restrictive ‘trigger’ laws on the books. Our partners at KUER speak with a Utah law professor about what happens now. Plus, this week was the summer solstice. That’s the longest day of the year. It has significance for different cultures around the world. In our region, there’s a growing number of observers that find a connection with this time and some rock art panels. // And later, the Weekly News Reel where we check in with reporters on their latest stories of the Moab area. Doug McMurdo of The Times-Independent discusses the women behind the important research into biocrust, a push to quiet down local streets, and fawn death spikes in the Book Cliffs. Maggie McGuire of the Moab Sun News talks ongoing efforts to curb noise in the valley, a historic cabin housing a local’s collection of documents and an artist in residency program at the Moab Arts and Recreation Center. // Show Notes: // Photo: A ‘Keep Abortion Legal’ sign. The Supreme Court has overturned the fundamental right to abortion established 50 years ago in Roe v Wade. Adam Fagen/Creative Commons // KUER: (May 2022) How Utah’s trigger law will reshape abortion access if Roe v. Wade is overturned // The Washington Post: Abortion will soon be banned in 13 states. Here’s which could be next. // Politico: Abortion laws by state – Where abortions are illegal after Roe v. Wade // Moab Rock Art // Weekly News Reel Mentions: // The Times-Independent: Carbon, climate and ‘charismatic’ crusts // The Times-Independent: Push to quiet street gets louder // The Times-Independent: Fawn death spikes in Book Cliffs // Moab Sun News: In love with Moab history – Historic cabin houses local man’s collection of documents

Jun 26
Thursday June 23, 2022

Democratic Party candidate Davina Smith is running against Republican Phil Lyman for a new Utah State House district. About the size of West Virginia, it includes all of Utah’s national parks and portions of the Navajo Nation and Ute Mountain Ute tribal land. If elected, Smith would be the first Native woman to serve as a Utah representative. She visited Moab yesterday to speak about her campaign. Plus, a small group of citizen scientists are helping detect Moab’s most pesky mosquito, the aedes aegypti, which can carry viruses like West Nile. And, a new informational guide is helping visitors learn about mounting ecological crises at the Great Salt Lake.  // Show Notes // Photo: Democratic Party candidate Davina Smith is running against Republican Phil Lyman in Utah's new House District 69 // Moab Mosquito Abatement District // Moab Sun News: Moab residents can learn to collect mosquito data on June 22 // Utah Public Radio: Nature Conservancy and Utah Office of Tourism partner to create Great Salt Lake-centric travel guide

Jun 23