Join correspondent, Tom Wilmer as he visits with Country music talent rep Ken McMeans, who’s going against the grain and running his major country agency from the Central Coast of California. Ken McMeans Presents is now based in beautiful Morro Bay and Ken talks about how and why he’s able to work successfully outside of Nashville with artists like Meghan Linsey (Steel Magnolia), Michael Peterson, Bryan White, Herrick and Jesse Keith Whitley.
He also discusses how the ocean community he lives in is benefitting from his relocation to paradise. Ken McMeans Presents, represents National Country Artists & Tours, Grandstand/Main Stage/Secondary Stage events at Fairs/Festivals/Casinos/PACs/Clubs across the country.
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Join Correspondent, Julie Henning, reporting from the frigid Lake Winnebago where she reports about Sturgeon ice fishing for NPR.ORG Podcast “Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer”. Check out this episode!
Listen to Correspondent, Molly Blaisdell reporting for “Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer” NPR Podcast as she explores cool dining venues in the San Francisco Bay Area Check out this episode!
Great restaurants can be found in any world-class destination, but the San Francisco Bay Area truly has it all. Whether you are hungry (or thirsty) for Italian, Greek, Indian, Japanese, Peruvian or any other flavor that tempts your palate, the San Francisco Bay Area is known for its variety of international cuisine dining options. Reporting for “Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer”, NPR Podcast, join correspondent, Molly Blaisdell and her dining companion, Jeff Cappacio as they venture out around the San Francisco Bay are to find the region’s very best international culinary dining venues. Visits include: Desco in Oakland, La Mar Cebicheria Peruana at Pier 1/12 on the San Francisco waterfront Embarcadero, Piperade on Battery Street in downtown San Francisco, and Ajanta on Solano in Berkeley, California. To discover more of Molly Blaisdell’s Bay Area dining favorites visit: http://www.examiner.com/article/flavors-of-the-world-find-them-all-here-the-san-francisco-bay-area?cid=db_articles.
Join correspondent, Tom Wilmer in Monterey, California’s Cannery Row for a behind the scenes look at the Forbes Four-Star Monterey Plaza Hotel. The Plaza’s mission to source products locally and regionally includes all aspects of their operation. The hotel is passionate about their relationships with growers in the nearby Salinas Valley (dubbed the salad Bowl of the World) where they not only source locally grown, sustainable and organic produce, but they also take guests on field trips to meet the growers in the fields. Visits include, Heidi Bettencourt, Director of sales & Marketing, GM John Narigi, Director of Food & Beverage, Diego Anea, and Executive Chef, James Waller. Listen to the interview on NPR’s Podcast site “Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer” Check out this episode!
The Pinnacles National Park ranger station is just ten miles inland from the sleepy agricultural town of Soledad, hunkered along US Highway 101 (One hundred and forty miles south of San Francisco). The realm of the Pinnacles is mostly wild California chaparral—Blue oaks, leaning gray pines and Manzanita. But discordantly frozen in mid thrust, rising out of the rolling hills are the sharp and craggy, fingerlike volcanic-spires and domes—the Pinnacles’ namesake. 23 millions years ago, 190 miles south of Soledad, an eight thousand foot-tall volcano formed, smack in the midst of the San Andreas Fault, with the Pacific Plate on one side and the continental plate on the other. The Pacific Plate sheared northward and brought with it the western half of the volcano—the remnants of that volcano comprise present day Pinnacles. Join correspondent, Tom Wilmer at Pinnacles National Park where he visits as he hikes with Ranger, Lupe Zaragoza. Congress created Pinnacles National Monument in 1908. In January 2013, the 26,000-acre site officially gained National Park status.
There are two entrances to Pinnacles National Park (140 miles south of San Francisco)—as no roads transit the breadth of the Park. West Pinnacles entrance is 10 miles (8 minutes) east of Soledad, Ca. East Pinnacles entrance is 29 Miles (45 minutes) northeast of King City. East Pinnacles maintains the only tent and RV campsite, general store, and showers. Transit time from West to East Pinnacles is approximately two hours. Pinnacles Day-Use fee is $5 per car–extra charge for overnight camping.
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Join Correspondent, Tom Wilmer on the island of Kauai for a Zipline adventure in the mountains above Poipu on the south shore. And then it’s time to saddle up for a visit with Jimmy Miranda at CJM Stables where they offer daily trail rides along the seashore as well as lessons and regularly scheduled rodeos.
Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods–creating a Legacy with their Big Island Koa reforestation program on the flanks of Moana Kea
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Most everyone is aware that the world’s supply of exotic hardwoods is dwindling at a staggering rate. The World Resource Institute estimates tropical rainforest destruction at 50 million acres per year.
Just a few months ago the Chinese government put in a bid to purchase 50 percent of Ecuador’s Amazon rainforest…and the motivation was ultimately not a reverence for tropical hardwoods–their plan is to clear-cut the jungle and subsequently institute a massive Ecuadorian oil drilling operation.
There are commercial and non-profit tree farms and plantations focused on sustainable exotic hardwoods, but the entire inventory represents less than two percent of the worldwide demand for hardwoods. Acacia Koa, one of the world’s most exotic and coveted hardwoods is revered for its curly, ribbon like grain with an enchanting iridescence – a prime reason why woodworkers use Koa for crafting bowls, boxes, architectural accents and high-grade musical instruments. Koa is far from cheap. Its retail cost has escalated approximately 1000 percent over the past 10 years alone.
So how do we turn the tide on the demise of exotic hardwoods? A friend in Honolulu told me about a company called Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods, located on the Big Island of Hawaii that’s come up with a viable answer. It’s not a non-profit, but the two visionaries who started HLH, Jeff Dunster and Darrell Fox have created a business model that does quite well financially but also makes a prime mission of giving back not only to the earth but to non-profit organizations as well.
I flew from Kauai to Hilo on the Big Island to spend the day with Dunster and Fox at their 2,700 acre plantation located high up on the flanks of 13, 796 foot tall Moana Kea.In less than four years, HLH has planted more than 200,000 trees, with three quarters of the plantings designated as Legacy trees that will never be harvested. I’m Tom Wilmer, come along and join me at Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods Visitor Center, located 34 miles north of Hilo for a visit with Dunster and Fox.
NPR.ORG “Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer” Podcast Join correspondent Tom Wilmer in Austin, Texas for a walking tour of the LBJ Library and Museum with Communications Director, Anne Wheeler. Located on the University of Texas, Austin campus, the LBJ Library first opened in 1971, the facility completed a $10 million renovation in 2012. We will also visit with retired U.S. Congressman, Kika de la Garza from Mission, Texas as he shares his recollections of his friendship with LBJ. Then it’s off to explore LBJ Ranch on the outskirts of Johnson City, Texas with National Park Ranger, Gus Sanchez.
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Omaha, Nebraska is a place that offers an amazing diversity of things to do and see, ranging from music, theater, trend setting culinary experiences to a palpable history as well as icons of America such as the legendary Boys Town, founded by Father Flanagan nearly a century ago.
I’m Tom Wilmer, come along and join me in Omaha for a journey discovery. We’ll start out at Love’s Jazz & Art Center in the heart of the Northside of town. Love’s is a non-profit center that melds the best of local and regional art and music.
Boys Town has been a part of the Omaha fabric since 1917 and has grown to become it’s own legal town complete with fire and police department. Melissa Ferris Marketing specialist at Boys Town.
Two hundred years ago, explorers Lewis & Clark traveled through the region en route to the Oregon Coast. Today, Omaha is home to the National Park’s administrative headquarters for the 3,700 mile historic trail that wends from Illinois to The mouth of the Columbia river. Joanne Ryan is a park ranger at the Omaha interpretive center.
The North Side of Omaha has been a hub of American Jazz and blues since the 1920s. At the height of the jazz and blues era The Dreamland Ballroom, McGill’s Blue Room, Jim Bell’s Harlem on Lake, and venues that catered to the African American community played host to legends such as Luis Armstrong, Lionel Hampton, Count Basie, the Nat King Cole Trio and other greats. Love’s Jazz and Art Center was created in honor of Preston Love and to pay homage to Omaha’s illustrious past as a Jazz and Blues trendsetter. It also serves as a venue for present day, local, regional, and national musicians as well as artists to showcase their work. In addition to ongoing art exhibits with an African American emphasis, the center offers a live jazz concert every Friday night. Tim Clark is the executive Director at Love’s Jazz and Art Center on 24th Street.
Boys Town was born in Omaha back in 1917—the vision of Father Flanagan—and made famous by the 1939 Hollywood film of the same name. Come along and join me at Boys Town for a visit with marketing specialist Melissa Ferris. When Lewis & Clark made their daring trek across the Western Wilderness 200 years ago, their journey led them through what is now downtown Omaha. The administrative headquarters for the trail is the National Park Service Midwest office in Omaha that includes an informative interpretive facility. We’ll meet Park Ranger Joanne Ryan at the Omaha Interpretive Center. Less than 15 years after Lewis & Clark explored the region, at their recommendation Fort Atkinson was established on the banks of the Missouri River not far from Omaha. Join Park Superintendent John Slader for a walking tour of the historic fort. Mahoney State Park, located midway between Omaha and Lincoln Nebraska is a year round park with a wide array of attractions, including a restaurant, overnight lodge and cabins. Darrell Mueller, Park Superintendent.
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