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Open Spaces

100 EpisodesProduced by Wyoming Public MediaWebsite

A news and public affairs program about Wyoming and the Mountain West.

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Open Spaces June 18, 2021

June 18th, 2021


On this episode, the show as the state is dealing with a record number of tourists, businesses are having trouble finding enough employees to stay open. And some think it's because people aren't applying for jobs while …

Open Spaces June 11, 2021

June 12th, 2021


On this episode, we will get a lowdown on the upcoming fire season and State Representative Dan Zwonitzer explains why lawmakers are considering …

Open Spaces June 4, 2021

June 4th, 2021


On this episode, this week the Albany County Sheriff's Officer who killed an unarmed man in 2018 has resigned. The sheriff says the incident has led to changes. The University of Wyoming sheep program is transforming …

Open Spaces May 21, 2021

May 21st, 2021


On this episode, we will be joined by Congresswoman Liz Cheney who will discuss her plans to reform the Republican Party. A group home for people with severe mental illnesses has closed because of state budget cuts. …

Open Spaces May 14, 2021

May 14th, 2021


On this episode, Wyoming's Republicans are reacting to Liz Cheney's removal from House Republican leadership. Lots more wind development has been moving into the state. And that's led to a lot of conflict in …

Open Spaces May 7, 2021

May 7th, 2021


On this episode, vaccine hesitancy is high in Wyoming and Natrona County. That has meant a huge surplus in shots. Wyoming State Superintendent Jillian Balow is pushing back on a federal proposal that seeks to include …

Open Spaces April 23, 2021

April 23rd, 2021


On this episode, we will look at how COVID-19 impacted Wyoming over the last year. Many say that health orders went too far and harmed many businesses, but others say the state health officer helped the state. COVID-19 …

Open Spaces April 16, 2021

April 16th, 2021


On this episode, Wyoming has invested a lot of time trying to find ways to save the coal industry. Many years ago that let to the state embracing a …

Open Spaces April 9, 2021

April 9th, 2021


On this episode, the Wyoming Legislature faces an interesting future following a session that saw $430 million in budget cuts. We will also review …

Open Spaces April 2, 2021

April 2nd, 2021


On this episode, Catherine Wheeler will join Bob Beck to discuss the happenings from the Wyoming legislative session. Cuts to arts teachers has some …

Open Spaces March 19, 2021

March 19th, 2021


On this episode, the pandemic has shone a light on the capacity of meat packing facilities in Wyoming. Potentially propelling state and federal money towards the industry that has not been seen for awhile. American …

Open Spaces March 12, 2021

March 12th, 2021


On this episode, Wyoming lawmakers are pushing back against the public health orders issued in the last year. The Wyoming legislature is considering a voter identification bill. A taxpayer-funded study gives a grim …

Open Spaces March 5, 2021

March 5th, 2021


On this episode, usually segregation in school is something you heard about in the south. But it turns out Wyoming had segregated schools as well. …

Open Spaces February 26, 2021

February 26th, 2021


On this episode, we speak with Governor Mark Gordon and one topic we talk about, what to do about education funding. Speaking of education, Deb Haaland's confirmation hearings were must-see TV for many young Indigenous …

Open Spaces February 12, 2021

February 12th, 2021


On this epsiode, today legislators will consider cutting education funding this session, possibly by 100 million dollars. But not everyone agrees. …

Open Spaces February 5, 2021

February 5th, 2021


On this episode, Wyoming Congresswoman Liz Cheney survived an attempt to remove her from House Leadership and she says she's now focused on the …

Open Spaces January 22, 2021

January 22nd, 2021


On this episode, a former opponent of Congresswoman Liz Cheney explains why some Republicans in the state are furious with Cheney for voting to impeach former President Donald Trump. After a pretty dismal response to …

Open Spaces January 15, 2021

January 15th, 2021


Today on the show we will hear from one of many Public Health Officers who've received pushback during the pandemic. The pandemic has also left many women out of work, at a time when the recession continues a downward …

Open Spaces January 8, 2021

January 8th, 2021


The COVID-19 vaccine has been touted as the light at the end of the tunnel for the pandemic. But the rollout has been slow including here in Wyoming. …

Open Spaces December 18, 2020

December 18th, 2020


On this episode, we'll take a look at how funeral homes in the state have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. U.S. Senator Mike Enzi is finishing up his time in Washington. The festival of lights, better known as …

Open Spaces December 11, 2020

December 11th, 2020


On this episode, in Wyoming man are anxious to see if the Biden administration will keep true to its word and limit energy extraction on public land. …

Open Spaces December 4, 2020

December 4th, 2020


On this episode, we will speak with the state health officer about growing numbers of COVID-19 cases and deaths. It turns out there may be at least one positive that comes out of the pandemic, access to telehealth in …

Open Spaces November 27, 2020

November 30th, 2020


Hospitals are filling up with COVID-19 patients across the Mountain West, and some are leaning on neighboring states to help. This may frustrate some, but others think nation-wide cooperation will be key going forward. …

Open Spaces November 20, 2020

November 20th, 2020


On this episode, COVID-19 numbers are skyrocketing in Wyoming and hospitals are facing an unprecedented demand for their services, as cases, hospitalizations and the need for care continue to skyrocket. As COVID-19 …

Open Spaces November 6, 2020

November 6th, 2020


On this episode, a series of stories about race. Teton County finds a solution to a problem that they didn't know existed until the pandemic hit. The …

Open Spaces October 30, 2020

October 31st, 2020


On this episode, the University of Wyoming has unveiled its proposal for steep budget cuts. Businesses across Wyoming face difficult decisions when …

Open Spaces October 16, 2020

October 16th, 2020


On this episode, last weeked, a same sex couple in northwest wyoming were told they are not welcome and need to leave. The 1988 fires that scorched …

Open Spaces October 9, 2020

October 9th, 2020


On this episode, this past week saw a record 56 COVID-19 patients hospitalized in Wyoming. We take a look at how hospitals are dealing with the increase of patients. The recent acting director of the Buerau of Land …

Open Spaces October 2, 2020

October 2nd, 2020


On this episode, Wyoming has re-upped its contract with a nonprofit that's operating out-of-state to stop the early closure of coal plants. Locals there have been surprised to hear that another state was intervening …

Open Spaces September 25, 2020

September 25th, 2020


On this episode, in several states Sequel Youth and Family Services is under investigation for abuse. There a concerns about their juvenile treatment facility in Wyoming too. The life of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had …

Open Spaces September 11, 2020

September 11th, 2020


On this episode, the 80th annual One Shot Antelope Hunt is cancelled due to the pandemic. Critics hope organizers will take the opportunity to retire …

Open Spaces September 4, 2020

September 4th, 2020


On this episode, the first transfer of 40 Yellowstone National Park bison to 16 tribes across the nation occurred. Why has this been so hard? Bob Beck will speak with the Director of Wyoming's Department of Workforce …

Open Spaces August 28, 2020

August 28th, 2020


On this episode, we will explain what it might take for some in the legislature to consider tax increases and what that means for the state. A controversial plan for restoring Medicine Bow National Forest has just been …

Open Spaces August 14, 2020

August 14th, 2020


On this episode, we'll hear a march from Riverton that focused on substance abuse five years after two Northern Arapaho men were murdered at a …

Open Spaces August 7, 2020

August 7th, 2020


On this episode, an influx of visitors will be in Northeast Wyoming because of the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. And officials are preparing. We take a look at how meat producers are trying to get inventory out to their …

Open Spaces July 31, 2020

July 31st, 2020


On this episode, we will have an interview with new UW President Ed Seidel on topics ranging from his goals to reopening the University. Wyoming's …

Open Spaces July 17, 2020

July 18th, 2020


On this episode, Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon announced the start of $250 million of budget cuts with more announcements on the way. Three years ago, …

Open Spaces July 10, 2020

July 10th, 2020


On this episode, we'll hear from food service businesses about how they've adapted to a "new normal" during the COVID-19 pandemic. RVs and trailers are having a moment right now, with Americans looking for a way to …

Open Spaces June 26, 2020

June 26th, 2020


On this episode, a local reproductive health clinic in Gillette lost its county funding and it could have big impacts on the people it serves. We …

Open Spaces June 19, 2020

June 19th, 2020


On this episode, we will visit some of the smaller towns where Black Lives Matter protests have occurred. It's been a scary time for undocumented workers. And a town remains skeptical about COVID-19 despite being the …

Open Spaces June 12, 2020

June 12th, 2020


On this episode, we'll hear from Black Wyomingites who've been protesting around our state in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd. We …

Open Spaces June 5, 2020

June 5th, 2020


On this episode, we bring you a special episode on the 150th anniversary of women's suffrage in the Equality State. We'll look at the history of …

Open Spaces May 29, 2020

May 29th, 2020


On this episode, recently Wyoming Public Radio won Regional Edward R. Murrow awards for best hard news, investigative and sports story. We also won for best use of sound, best continuing coverage and best documentary. …

Open Spaces May 22, 2020

May 22nd, 2020


On this episode, Wyoming Congresswoman Liz Cheney talks about the importance of following health orders when it comes to COVID-19. Yellowstone and …

Open Spaces May 15, 2020

May 15th, 2020


On this episode, the month of Ramadan is a time for Muslims around the world to gather and pray and help the people around them. Usually international students travel home. And we'll hear Wyomingites on your pandemic …

Open Spaces May 8, 2020

May 8th, 2020


The coronavirus pandemic has upended everyone's lives. But it's been especially disappointing for high school seniors. With casinos closed and oil …

Open Spaces May 1, 2020

May 1st, 2020


Today on the show, the Wind River Reservation remains under a stay-at-home order, while our state begins to ease restrictions meant to slow the spread of COVID-19. Additionally, experts say people still need to be …

Open Spaces April 17, 2020

April 18th, 2020


On this episode, we will be joined by Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon who will discuss the latest state plans connected with COVID-19. One economist …

Open Spaces April 10, 2020

April 11th, 2020


On this episode, the number of people getting laid off in Wyoming shot through the roof in the last few weeks. And they're starting to feel the pain. While many industries have closed due to COVID-19, others have had to …

Open Spaces April 3, 2020

April 3rd, 2020


On this episode, creators around the state are trying to do their part to solve the severe shortages of important hospital equipment. And…the …

Open Spaces March 27, 2020

March 28th, 2020


On this episode, we'll focus most of our attention on the impacts COVID-19 is having on the state. The coronavirus is identifying the shortage of intensive care unit beds in the United States but there's another …

Open Spaces March 20, 2020

March 21st, 2020


On this episode, with a growing number of COVID 19 cases in the state, many are on edge. We will go to Fremont County where one woman is dealing with her mother’s hospitalization. Experts give tips on how to stay …

Open Spaces March 13, 2020

March 14th, 2020


On this episode, state officials confirmed the first known case of COVID-19 in Sheridan this week. As Wyoming prepares for the situation to get worse, some will be able to prepare more than others. Legislators say cuts …

Open Spaces February 28, 2020

February 29th, 2020


On this episode, lawmakers will soon be reviewing Wyoming's basket of goods with the hope that it could improve education and save money. The …

Open Spaces February 21, 2020

February 22nd, 2020


On this episode, we will have a couple stories from the Wyoming legislature including a look at coal. Lawmakers are looking into buying land across …

Open Spaces February 7, 2020

February 8th, 2020


On this episode, the shale revolution lowered prices for oil and gas and caused production to skyrocket. But last year, it was too much a good thing… …

Open Spaces January 31, 2020

February 1st, 2020


On this episode, after the recent death of a dog who was caught in a snare on public land, some residents of Fremont County are changing their dog-walking habits. Gillette is facing a new future with the decline in coal …

Open Spaces January 17, 2020

January 18th, 2020


On this episode, a hospital in northwest Wyoming is using telehealth to treat patients with opioid use disorder. Wind generation has taken off in southeastern Wyoming. But one new proposed development isn’t sitting well …

Open Spaces January 10, 2020

January 11th, 2020


On this episode, schools in our state have been working to encourage female students' interest in STEM subjects but girls at Wyoming Indian High …

Open Spaces January 3, 2020

January 3rd, 2020


On this episode, we will bring several stories we produced in 2019 including the reason why many sought to leave Wyoming following the announcement …

Open Spaces December 20, 2019

December 20th, 2019


On this episode, landowners in southeast Wyoming allege a massive oil and gas company has taken minerals from them without consent. They're now suing Anadarko for millions. The Wyoming football team has had to battle a …

Open Spaces December 13, 2019

December 14th, 2019


On this episode, Governor Mark Gordon joins us for a wide ranging discussion on a number of topics including taxes. Wyoming's First Lady Jennie Gordon is taking on hunger in Wyoming and she's working with local …

Open Spaces November 22, 2019

November 23rd, 2019


On this episode, in Uinta County officials are looking to build an ICE detention center outside of Evanston. But some residents are pushing back on those plans. Thanks to warmer temperatures, algae blooms may be on the …

Open Spaces November 8, 2019

November 9th, 2019


On this episode, maybe you’ve heard about e-bikes, or electric bicycles, but you’re not sure what they are. But the very definition of an e-bike …

Open Spaces November 1, 2019

November 2nd, 2019


On this episode, we will hear about plans that the Bureau of Land Management has to increase the numbers of wild horses they remove from public land. The University of Wyoming recently adopted a plan to help support …

Open Spaces October 25, 2019

October 28th, 2019


On this episode, special education students are incarcerated at higher rates than their K-12 peers. Recent coal bankruptcies have left many Wyoming workers without health insurance. Legislators are discussing new ways …

Open Spaces October 4, 2019

October 4th, 2019


On this episode, new federal rules has one family planning clinic in the state leaving a grant program. In a new installment of our "Belonging" …

Open Spaces September 27, 2019

September 27th, 2019


On this episode, investigators say that the man shot and killed by police in Riverton on Saturday attacked the officer with a gun. But family members …

Open Spaces September 13, 2019

September 13th, 2019


On this episode, we explore trainings for school employees and even students, the long-awaited addition to the University of Wyoming College of …

Open Spaces September 6, 2019

September 6th, 2019


On this episode, one reason only a quarter of furloughed Blackjewel employees have found new jobs is because existing job openings pay less. …

Open Spaces August 16, 2019

August 16th, 2019


On this episdoe, we’ll find out what makes people think it’s okay to go up and pet a bison in Yellowstone national park. Scientists know little about frogs in Wyoming, but one project is hoping to change that. A rock …

Open Spaces August 9, 2019

August 9th, 2019


On this episode, we go back through history to World War II when imprisoned Japanese-Americans performed music for Wyomingites. A Sheridan conservation group is proposing an expansion of a local trail system. 150 years …

Open Spaces August 2, 2019

August 2nd, 2019


On this episode, the Northern Arapaho Tribe has filed suit against its former law firm. The tribe’s new lawyer says the Northern Arapaho have been taken advantage of. Many states are selling fewer and fewer hunting …

Open Spaces July 19, 2019

July 19th, 2019


On this episode, remember when the tax break was going to bring in loads of revenue? A federal report says revenues are down and the country is facing the debt limit. But Senator Enzi sees things differently. Wyoming …

Open Spaces July 12, 2019

July 12th, 2019


On this episode, workers at the recently bankrupt coal company Blackjewel are not waiting at home for the gates to re-open. A network of support has formed on a Facebook page. We'll also learn about how the Northern …

Open Spaces June 28, 2019

June 28th, 2019


On this episode, around 60 percent of 18 to 24-year-olds leave Wyoming. We'll bring you the first in a series of conversations between young people …

Open Spaces June 21, 2019

June 21st, 2019


Today on the show we will have three stories on health care issues including what happens when kids don’t have health insurance. Also, the governor and others in Wyoming are looking into why Native American women suffer …

Open Spaces June 7, 2019

June 7th, 2019


In March – Shopko – a small town version of Walmart. There is potential for it to hit Wyoming communities hard. But some communities are fighting …

Open Spaces May 31, 2019

May 31st, 2019


On this episode, the state is working to build a new nursing home for veterans. Kemmerer has an uncertain economic future. It’s power plant could be …

Open Spaces May 24, 2019

May 24th, 2019


On this episode, we will hear from a Native American representative and from the Wyoming game and fish department regarding legislation being …

Open Spaces May 17, 2019

May 17th, 2019


On this episode, we'll take a look at why you might want to double check on whether or not you have an outstanding warrant. An owner of two coal mines in Wyoming is now bankrupt and we’ll find out why Thousands of …

Open Spaces May 3, 2019

May 3rd, 2019


On this episode, Capitol Hill may soon start discussing some building projects, but Wyoming Senator Mike Enzi says the deficit is too high. President …

Open Spaces April 26, 2019

April 26th, 2019


On this episode, a story exploring how Cloud Peak got to where it is today. It's fought hard, but a bankruptcy is likely approaching. We're hearing …

Open Spaces April 12, 2019

April 12th, 2019


On this episode, Chronic Wasting Disease continues to be a growing problem in Wyoming and the mountain west. We take a closer look at how mentally ill patients are transported to and from hospitals…it turns out some …

Open Spaces April 5, 2019

April 5th, 2019


On this episode, workers are flooding into Douglas as oil and gas production takes off. The small area is still figuring out how to handle it. April …

Open Spaces March 29, 2019

March 29th, 2019


On this episode, University of Wyoming President Laurie Nichols joins us to discuss the trustee’s decision to not renew her contract. It also caught …

Open Spaces March 15, 2019

March 15th, 2019


On this episode, a collaboration with the Casper Star Tribune on Natrona County's approach to child sexual abuse. The state legislature is looking at …

Open Spaces March 8, 2019

March 8th, 2019


On this episode, legislators are seeking to keep coal-fired power plants running a little longer, but some are doubtful that’s possible. Wyoming's …

Open Spaces March 1, 2019

March 1st, 2019


On this episode, the Wyoming legislative session has ended and Governor Gordon has some concerns about bills that may be taking away local control. …

Open Spaces February 15, 2019

February 16th, 2019


On this episode, Wyoming has the most dangerous workplaces in the country. But a Wyoming law could be making it worse by making it hard for …

Open Spaces February 8, 2019

February 9th, 2019


On this episode, it seems like more anti-abortion bills are getting traction in the legislature, the question is why? Wyoming’s population has been …

Open Spaces January 25, 2019

January 26th, 2019


On this episode, how oil and gas permitting continued to occur on public lands while the shutdown was in full swing. Agencies that distribute food …

Open Spaces January 18, 2019

January 19th, 2019


On this episode, a decision at legislature about how to zone a new private school in Jackson and a uranium mine’s pursuit to solve its financial woes …

Open Spaces January 11, 2019

January 12th, 2019


On this episode, during the partial government shutdown, the oil and gas industry says it’s feeling the impact but critics say the industry is still getting a better deal than most. The legislature is back in session …

Open Spaces December 21, 2018

December 21st, 2018


On this episode, we will hear from Governor-elect Mark Gordon as he prepares for office. We will go to Cheyenne for a story about how trauma impacts …

Open Spaces December 7, 2018

December 8th, 2018


On this episode, Governor Matt Mead is wrapping up his final weeks and he’ll discuss some topics including his biggest disappointment. Farmers have been turning to Twitter to have conversations about mental health and …

Open Spaces November 30, 2018

December 1st, 2018


On this episode, Wyoming is looking at the high cost of health care and insurance. Mistrust between environmental groups and local government is keeping the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear in limbo. And we’ll explore why …

Open Spaces November 16, 2018

November 17th, 2018


On this episode, Cloud Peak Energy is thinking of selling its company. Defense Secretary James Mattis visits Wyoming to meet with the Philippine Ambassador to U.S. about a pair of bells. In October, the Department of …

Open Spaces November 9, 2018

November 10th, 2018


On this episode, a story about the rise of oil and gas in Wyoming and why it’s happening. Does the presence grizzly bears actually affect the …

Open Spaces October 26, 2018

October 26th, 2018


On this episode, we take a deeper look into how the Wyoming Game and Fish Department is funded and whether it needs to change. The coroner who attended Matthew Shepard’s funeral has never spoken to the media…until now. …

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