Friday, September 15, 2006


Hi everyone! I have been SO busy learning about radio and Philadelphia that I haven't had time to write until now.

I think I told you that Keith and Kristin are here attending a conference. The conference is called "PRPD" or the Public Radio Program Directors conference. Kristin says it is held every year in a different city. Kristin also told me it was a very important event. That's because many of the people who come to the conference decide whether or not to air Keith and Kristin's radio programs.

I decided that I wanted to learn more about the conference and why it was so important. So Kristin let me have a sneak peak from her purse. But, I had to promise to be on my best behavior!

Keith and Kristin had reserved a spot at the conference before we got to Philadelphia. And on the first full day of the event, they were given a name tag and a big black bag FULL of stuff! Kristin says the bag is called a tote stuffer and all of the items inside promote radio programs, radio producers, radio stations, and products that radio stations use. Kristin showed me all of the items in her bag.

One of the items in the bag is a black notebook with the Stanley Foundation's name on it. I was really surprised when I saw it. I asked Kristin if she knew the notebook had the Stanley Foundation's name on it. She smiled and said yes. Guess what? It was Keith and Kristin's job to make sure the notebook was printed and placed in the bag. Here you can see me with the notebook (which included a cool postcard thanking all of the radio stations that played Keith and Kristin's radio program that I helped with).

Kristin says she might let me keep the bag and some of the cool stuff in it but only if I am on my best behavior. I promise to be REALLY good!

There are LOTS of people at the conference. Their friends Simon (from Washington) and Ken (from Minneapolis) are here. I don't know anyone else here but everyone has been very nice.

This afternoon, Keith and Kristin had some free time in their schedule so they took me to see some very important places here in Philadelphia. Did you know that Philadelphia was America's capital city from 1790 to 1800? I had no idea! Do you know the name of America's capital city now? Hint....I have been to our capital city with Keith and Kristin.

Kristin told me that many important things in America's history are located in Philadelphia. One item is something called "The Liberty Bell." Kristin says it is a symbol of America's freedom. She also says the bell was used to call people to city meetings or to warn residents if something bad had happened. I think this must be like the siren I hear when bad weather is happening outside.

The Liberty Bell used to hang on top of a building called "Independence Hall" but now it is in a special building designed to keep it safe. I think this is a good idea because the bell has a HUGE crack in it. Kristin says no one really knows when the bell broke but it was LONG before I was born. Here I am with Kristin standing near the Liberty Bell. Look closely and you will see the big crack in the bell.

The building behind us is called "Independence Hall." Kristin says the Declaration of Independence was written in that building in 1776. Kristin says the Declaration of Independence is a very important document in American history. I had no idea! I think I am going to have to pay more attention in my history class from now on.

The United States Constitution is another important document that was first written in Philadelphia. Do you know what the Constitution is? See if you can look it up. There is a museum in Philadelphia called the National Constitution Center. It has one of the original copies of the Constitution. Here I am outside of the museum. Kristin tells me the words on the wall are the start of the Constitution.

Right across the street from the National Constitution Center is a building called the "United States Mint." That's where they print money! How cool is that?

I wanted to see the inside of the building but we didn't have time for a tour. I was able to put my face on a brand new $10.00 bill in the National Constitutional Center.

Can you see me? Here's a closer look.

Isn't that cool? I think I look good! Do you know who is normally pictured on the $10.00 bill? It's President Hamilton. I want to have my face on money. I guess that means I need to get elected President of the United States!

Before we left to head back to the hotel, Kristin kindly bought me a book on the Liberty Bell and a stuffed eagle to add to my collection of things from my many trips.

Last night, Keith and Kristin went to a special taping of a new public radio program called "Sound Opinions." I didn't really understand most of the show but Kristin told me it is a show where the two hosts talk about music. They also had a special guest, musician Moby. I've never heard of him but Kristin tells me he is very famous. I am going to have to trust her on that!

I was too shy to have my picture taken during the performance but it was interesting to "watch" a radio program.

Whew....I must have been very tired from my busy day because I fell asleep as soon as the radio program was over. Kristin kindly tucked me into bed with my new eagle.

Tomorrow, we head back to Iowa. Until next time....

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Greetings from Philadelphia!

Hi everyone. I am now in Philadelphia with my friends Keith and Kristin.

It wasn't an easy trip. Our flight from Moline to Chicago was more than 2 hours late. This caused Keith and Kristin to miss their flight to Philadelphia. It is a good thing that Keith and Kristin travel so much. Kristin was able to book us on a new flight right away. But we had to wait almost 3 hours in the business lounge at O'Hare airport before we could get on the plane to Philadelphia. Sometimes I wonder if King Tut placed a curse on Kristin because her flights always seem to be late!

We got here after dark so I didn't see much of the city on our cab ride from the airport to the hotel. I did see lots of interesting towers with cool lights near the airport. Kristin told me the towers were part of an oil refinery. I learned that oil is turned into gasoline for cars and other products like engine oil at an oil refinery. I had no idea!

We also passed by the stadium where the Philadelphia Phillies baseball team plays. I was hoping we would get to see a baseball game tonight but Kristin says the Phillies are playing in Atlanta. :(
We are staying at the Sheraton in downtown Philadelphia. Kristin says she and Keith will be busy most of the day tomorrow at their radio conference. So she kindly got me a map of the city so I can learn more about Philadelphia while she is busy with the conference.

That's all for now. Until next time....

On the Road Again!

Hi everyone!

I am SO excited. My friends Keith and Kristin from the Stanley Foundation are going to a radio conference today and they are taking me with them! We are headed to a place called Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. See if you can find it on the map.

We are at the Moline airport right now. We had to get here even earlier than usual because Kristin said it might take longer to get through security. She was right. Kristin had to go to a special place and hold her hands up in the air. Then a security person checked all of Kristin's jewelry. While Kristin was being checked, I got to go through the x-ray machine! I love the x-ray machine.

I asked Keith why Kristin had to go through extra security. Keith says there are new rules about flying. The rules are supposed to help keep bad people from doing bad things. I guess this makes sense and it only took us a few minutes longer to get through the line.

Our flight to Chicago is on time so I think we are going to get breakfast before we leave.

Until next time....