We have a lot of fund-raising galas in this town, and a new one had its debut last night at the Sheraton-Crown Center (the former Hyatt Regency). It was called Radio Active: An Off-Air Affair.
Judging by the energy in the room and the size of the crowd — more than 500 — this looks like an event that will find a permanent place on the benefit calendar.
For one thing, KCUR lined up a well-known NPR personality, “Morning Edition” host David Greene, as guest speaker for the initial “Affair.”
For another, KCUR is on the move. The station has significantly increased its staff size in recent years and is steadily gaining listeners at the expense of some other traditional media models, including print journalism and AM radio.
Nico Leone, KCUR’s general manager, told the crowd 89.3 was one of the top 15 public radio markets in the country. That’s impressive.
And when Up to Date host Steve Kraske asked Greene why public radio’s stock seemed to be ascending everywhere, Greene said one reason is NPR’s conscious effort “to capture the energy of the younger generation.”
…Another factor that helped set a light-hearted, uninhibited tone to the occasion was the call for guests to wear “festive attire.” That flummoxed some people, but not me. As a Louisvillian and a Kentucky Derby regular, I know festive. I got a lot of compliments on my outfit, and I feel sure that had a vote been taken, I would have been named “most festive.”
That said, a lot of people were lookin’ good…Check it out…
Here’s a morning-after addition to the photo line-up. (See comment below by Kate, author of the 43rd Place blog.)