Siouxland Public Media Interviews and Features

Weekday mornings at 7:50
  • Hosted by Mary Hartnett, Sheila Brummer, Steve Smith, and Mark Munger

We talk with the people in our community who are making art, news, music, and more. 

This is Jessi Wakefield from the Sioux City Public Library and you’re listening to Check It Out.

Today I would like to recommend a fantasy that has been highly lauded and awarded over the past year. Author Naomi Novik is making quite a splash in the literary world with her fairy tale retellings, and in Spinning Silver, she has managed to create a magical, somewhat spooky, and very atmospheric loose retelling of Rumpelstiltskin.

This is Jessi Wakefield from the Sioux City Public Library and you’re listening to Check It Out.

This week on The Exchange, we hear the story of Ponca tribe chief Standing Bear. Siouxland Public Media and Small Wonders' Jim Schaap has been telling Standing Bear's story in a four-part series. We will hear that series today.

This is Sarah Enright, with the Sioux City Public Library, and you’re listening to Check It Out. 

Today, I am recommending My Best Friend’s Exorcism by Grady Hendrix. If you can appreciate a heavy dose of the 80s, mixed with everlasting friendship, and pinch of creepiness, this may be the perfect book for you. Although it’s considered “horror”, it’s so much more. The nostalgic vibe reeled me in, the unique plot kept me going, and the unexpected endearing conclusion had me wishing it wasn’t over.

Sioux City, IA - 11.6.20
Siouxland Public Media/Sheila Brummer

The Morningside Marching Mustangs performed for residents of Sunrise Retirement Community on November 6, 2020.

The group paid tribute to veterans with their song selections with temperatures in the 70s.

Shane Macklin, the Director of Bands at Morningside College shared details of their performance with Siouxland Public Media’s Sheila Brummer.  He also talked about the challenge of playing during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Majestic Pomp Fanfare

National Anthem

America- Let Freedom Ring

Battle Cry of Freedom

This is Kelsey Patterson with the Sioux City Public Library and you’re listening to Check It Out. It’s been four long years since Emma Straub published the wildly successful Modern Lovers and I was so ready for her to write another book. Enter All Adults Here. Already a Today Show #ReadWithJenna Book Club Pick, I couldn't wait to get my hands on this book.

Check It Out: Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris.

Oct 19, 2020

This is Sarah Enright, with the Sioux City Public Library, and you’re listening to Check It Out. 

Today, I am recommending Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris. Can you picture that perfect couple? You know, the ones that have a flawless marriage and everything in their life seems to be enviable, from their house, yard, the clothes they wear, and even their parties? In Paris’ 2016 debut thriller, she introduces us to newlyweds Jack and Grace, who are exactly such a couple, or so it seems. 

This is Jenn Delperdang with the Sioux City Public Library and you’re listening to Check It Out.

   I recently read an article in Library Journal magazine that the horror genre is trending.  The reasons were simple enough—readers often crave stories about situations and monsters worse than the world outside their doors--that comfort can be found in fiction that explores and even validates our deepest fears. Today, I’m recommending The Remaking by Clay McLeod Chapman—an eerie and disturbing ghost story that’s not quite like anything I’ve read before.  

Facebook/Vivian Miller

This weekend more than a dozen artists will join forces for an art show at the Ho-Chunk Center.  Vivian Miller is part of Siouxland Artists Incorporated that is hosting the event.  She provides a preview, updates us on recent gatherings and shares the impact of COVID-19 on the local art scene with SPM’s Sheila Brummer.

On Wednesday, Octobert 7th, Siouxland Public Media held a forum with the candidates for three seats on the Woodbury County Board of Supervisors in the November 3 general election.

This is Kelsey Patterson with the Sioux City Public Library and you’re listening to Check It Out. Today, I’m recommending my newest favorite romance novel, No Judgments by Meg Cabot. 

James C. Schaap

On a single visit to Lemmon, South Dakota, you can see the whole world. Seriously.

You want joy? Once a summer they put a tent up in Lemmon—a beer tent—for a town festival. A whole lot of people celebrate with a whole lot of beer, so many people and so much beer the town sells souvenir t-shirts with “I got bent in the tent,” across your chest.

You can buy that t-shirt any time of year, too. It’ll stop traffic. Even if people don’t ask, they’ll wonder. “I got bent in the tent.”

The Vakulskas Family

A well-known Siouxland priest passed away on Sunday, September 27th due to complications of COVID-19 and cancer at the age of 76.

Father John Vakulskas served many Catholic parishes in Siouxland during his half-century career.  He was also known as the “Carnival Priest” and was appointed International Coordinator of Carnival Ministries by Pope John Paull II in 1993.   

His nephew Brian Vakulskas of Sioux City talks to Siouxland Public Media’s Sheila Brummer about Father John's life and the impact of COVID-19 on his uncle's beloved amusement park industry and health. 

Check It Out: Untamed by Glennon Doyle

Sep 28, 2020

This is Sarah Enright, with the Sioux City Public Library, and you’re listening to Check It Out. 

Siouxland Public Media/J.J. Stone

The Alley Art Festival takes place this Saturday in downtown Sioux City.  The event highlights local artists and music.  The event is a collaboration between Downtown Partners and Vangarde Arts.  Brent Stockton of Vangarde Arts gives Siouxland Public Media’s Sheila Brummer details on this year’s modified event.

The festival starts at 1 p.m. on Saturday and ends at 11 p.m.  The entrance can be found at 4th Street along Nebraska and Pierce Streets.  Cost - $5.00/free for children 10 and under.

This is Kelsey Patterson with the Sioux City Public Library and you’re listening to Check It Out. Today, I’m recommending A Bad Day for Sunshine by bestselling author Darynda Jones. Best known for her Charley Davidson series (which I’ve recommended previously on Check It Out), Jones is back with an all-new series, starring a snarky and sassy new heroine, Sheriff Sunshine Vicram. Turning her talents to the police procedural genre, Darynda Jones has written a wickedly funny first installment to the series.  

091520 Noon News

This is Jenn Delperdang with the Sioux City Public Library, and you’re listening to Check It Out.

I love it when a book surprises me—when the story is not at all what I expected, but the writing and storytelling is so good that it draws me in.  Today I am recommending The Reckless Oath We Made by Bryn Greenwood--a novel that caught me completely by surprise—and I couldn’t put it down.  

Sarah McSweeney / WITCC

While we navigate our way through education during a pandemic, it's not just the traditional schools and classrooms that are having to find new methods. For Mara Hall, coordinator of Western Iowa Tech's Lifelong Learning, having to social distance has meant not only revamping her catalogue but working one-on-one with her lifelong learners, often teaching them to connect through new media platforms such as Zoom. When they first arrive online to their classes, though, Mara sees them light up with happiness, not only for overcoming the tech obstacle, but for the rejoining of the community.

The state of Iowa today is reporting more than 850 new cases of the coronavirus this morning and three new deaths.  Iowa has had more than 71 thousand cases of the virus and more than 12 hundred deaths.  Woodbury County Iowa reports 38 new cases of the cor0navirus and a total of 58 deaths, with no further deaths, and a total of over 44 hundred cases since the start of the pandemic. 

091020 304 News

Today Nodland Elementary School moved a second grade class to emergency response virtual learning, after multiple individuals from one classroom either tested positive for COVID-19 or experienced symptoms.

The Sioux City Community School District says it plans to return the class to on-Site Learning on Wednesday, September 23.

Sioux City Journal/Tim Hynds

The last remaining logo for Sue Bee Honey was removed from the headquarters of the Sioux Honey Association this summer.  The image shows a Native American woman and adorned the side of the building along Lewis Boulevard in Sioux City for the past 50 or so years.   

Mark Mammen is the president and CEO of the Sioux Honey Association.  He talks to Siouxland Public Media’s Sheila Brummer about the Sue Bee Logo change, the cooperative and about protecting the honey bee.


Coming up this week on The Exchange, we talk about protecting the vulnerable.  

A Siouxland family is dealing with the loss of a loved one from complications of COVID-19, and we hear from his sister.

Chris Mennen who served as an inspiration for others with disabilities. Mennen's sister says Chris brought joy into the lives of countless people, and did a lot with the gifts God gave him. 

Chris Mennen died on August 6, 2020 of respiratory failure and COVID-19 infection
Mennen Family

COVID-19 has claimed the lives of almost 1,200 in the state of Iowa since the start of the pandemic.  More than half were residents of long-term care facilities including a Siouxland man, Chris Mennen.  

Chris had Down Syndrome and lived in Sanborn at Prairie View Nursing Home; the site of an outbreak.  

Chris died on August 6, 2020 at the age of 62 of repiratory failure and COVID-19 infection.  His sister, Mary Sue Moore, who lives in Milford shares details of his inspiring life. 

The abuse and starvation death of 16-year-old Sabrina Ray might have been prevented if Iowa's Department of Human Services workers had been more diligent and shared information more efficiently. That's according to a report released today from the state ombudsman.

This is Sarah Enright, with the Sioux City Public Library, and you’re listening to Check It Out. Today, I am recommending We Are the Luckiest by Laura McKowen.

Siouxland Public Media

On Sunday night it will be an end of an era for long-time Siouxland Public Media announcer Isaac Quinonez, also known as D.J. Tapatio.  He has been the long-time host of the program South of the Border.  For 16-years Isaac has been spending Sunday nights with listeners and sharing their requests with a high-energy and entertaining show.  He moved to Sioux City in the 1990s and studied broadcasting at Briar Cliff.  Isaac plans to return to his home of Guadalajara, Mexico and says leaving is bittersweet because he enjoys making a difference in the community.

Tyson Foods Edit | Remove


A website that has been analyzing Iowa coronavirus data from the start of the pandemic is now piecing together Iowa schools' reports.

After a court hearing Friday that invalidated the prepopulated ballot request forms and a call to have him resign, Woodbury County Auditor Pat Gill and election commissioner says today the problem was caused by a disagreement over home rule.

Omaha Fashion Week

This past weekend a Sioux City woman hit the runway at Omaha Fashion Week with other models 20-30 years younger.  Before the big show, Erika Hansen shared her modeling journey with her friend, Siouxland Public Media’s Sheila Brummer.  The 46-year-old explored the changes in society and fashion that allow her to break barriers.