Sidetrack with Jason Croft
On the program this time, we find out the secrets Santa uses to make his Christmas round from the author of the book "The Truth About Santa: Wormholes, Robots, and What Really Happens on Christmas Eve." We hear about a cheerleading squad that has formed at a famed women's college. And we learn that when you look like Santa, it's Christmas all year around. Those stories and more, this time on Sidetrack.
Lost Boys of Monmouth
Smith College cheerleaders
Memory Palace: Hoover Dam
Going Rogue as political theater
Music and the Mouse: How the Walt Disney Company used music to build its empire
Book interview: "The Truth About Santa"
Essay: "My Favorite Things"
It's Always Christmas
This month, we interview cult filmmaker Jeff Krulik, a director known for his rock fan documentary "Heavy Metal Parking Lot." We also talk to one of the authors of the blog "This Is Why You're Fat"--a collection of culinary monstrosities. Plus, Three Card Monte and crossword editor Merl Reagletalking about a puzzle he recently published featuring the call letters of this radio station. That and more, this time on Sidetrack!
Three card monte as street theater
Crossword puzzle editor Merl Reagel
"Freaks Like Us"
Jessica Amason, co-founder of the blog "This Is Why You're Fat"
Cult documentary filmmaker Jeff Krulik, director of "Heavy Metal Parking Lot"
This month, we talk to the creator of the popular blog Cake Wrecks, which highlights professional cakes that have gone horribly wrong. In our annual chat with a ghost hunter, we chat with Dale Kaczmarek of the Ghost Research Society. And we'll hear the gruesome story of the Villisca Axe Murder House. Those stories and more, this time on Sidetrack.
Essay: "Plummeting Approval"
Interview with ghost hunter Dale Kaczmarek, President of the Ghost Research Society
Villisca Axe Murder House
This month, we talk to the curator of the Hall of Heroes Superhero Museum in Elkhart, Indiana. We also talk to a Gibson City man about his bike trek from San Francisco to Illinois. And we have a special in-studio interview with Phil Clark of the local didjeridu rock band Tree Thump. Those stories and more, this time on Sidetrack!
Bike Trek from San Francisco to Gibson City
Recycling Your Ride
Hall of Heroes Superhero Museum
Stingrays for dinner
In-studio interview with Phil Clark of the band Tree Thump
For this program, we follow an annual seven-day bike race across Iowa, we learn the history of the Ferris Wheel, we hear what former music executives are doing now after the collapse of the industry, and we find out what it's like to take on a bully, for the first time, at age 33.
You Used To Be About The Music
Ragbrai--bike race across Iowa
Rare baseball event essay
High Above Lake Michigan--the history of the Ferris Wheel
Our Gods Wear Spandex (replay)
Punching Out A Bully
We hear the unusual story of Albert Cashier, a Civil War soldier from Illinois with a surprising secret. We also hear about a horn symposium that was held recently in Macomb; revisit our interview about the World's Largest Catsup Bottle; and hear about one woman's efforts to go green by dumpster diving.
International horn symposium in Macomb
World's Largest Catsup Bottle (replay)
In love with a cannibal
The dumpstering life
The secret life of civil war soldier Albert Cashier
This month, we remember local musician Jay Bennett who for a time played with the band Wilco, we talk to a professional mermaid, and we find out about a man who records sound for a living and his "one square inch of silence" project.
One Square Inch of Silence
Marina the Fire Eating Mermaid
Antimatter and the movies
Tribute to Jay Bennett
Sidetrack celebrates 10 years on the air with a selection of some of our favorite stories from the last decade. We find out if Philo really is the center of the universe; talk to the inventor of the Popcorn Fork; revisit our story on the Viper, the yodeling ukulele player; and hear about downtown Champaign's drinking fraternity.
Philo, The Center of the Universe
Bloomsday celebrated in Champaign
Pi Omega Omega, Champaign's drinking fraternity
On this month's program, we learn about a husband-and-wife circus duo, hear about the increasing popularity of vinyl records, look into the surge of Illinois wines, and we talk to granddaughter of Raggedy Ann creator Jonny Gruelle about the closing of the Raggedy Ann and Andy Museum in Arcola.
The Rolling Diamonds--husband and wife circus duo
Vinyl records making a comeback
Hike to interview Backcounty Ranger George Durkee
New Pirate exhibit at the Field Museum
Butter Lane cupcake shop in New York
Illinois Wines Make Headway
The closing of the Raggedy Ann and Andy Museum
On this month's program, local drummer Rocky Maffit visits the WILL studios and shows off a few unusual instruments. We hear about the Garlicky Greens Eating Championship...find out how one Illinois artist has been inspired by starlings...and we remember science fiction writer Philip Jose Farmer.
Garlicky Greens Eating Championship
Artist inspired by starlings
Philip Jose Farmer remembered
Essay: Judge Street Elmhurst
Rock Maffit live in the WILL studios
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