On the Trail with His Dogs by Ishmael Streever of the Alaska Teen Media Institute

March 9, 2011 in Youthcast by Molly Adams

As a kid who read the Jack London novels Call of the Wild and White Fang and saw their movie adaptations, as well
as Iron Will, I am now forever enchanted by sled dog racing. And the organizers of the Iditarod in Alaska play off that sentiment, billing it as “The Last Great Race on Earth.” And while I still dream of someday racing it, I know in my heart that that is a tough reality to achieve. It takes years of training, thousands of dollars, and a much tougher disposition than my own.

Seiji Takagi, pictured at right, started mushing when he was in second grade. And if you look at the bios of almost all of the people who ran the Junior Iditaord this year, they say they started racing as young as four but at least in elementary school. The dream dies a little more each year…

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The Iditarod is now in it'a fourth day. Follow along on the official website.

Sound like a pro: SB Nation has compiled a recent and long past history of the race, coupled with facts about the current crop of mushers.

Over on Change.org, a writer shows what he sees as corporate irresponsibility in Target's endorsement of the Iditarod (under what I think is a sensational headline.) In the comments on that post,  there is a smart debate about whether the sport is cruel or needlessly pushes the dogs. Good points are made all around. Jump in the convo yourself on the Iditarod Forums.

I Didn't Know That (You Were a Muslim) by Tali Singer

November 17, 2010 in Youthcast by Molly Adams

When Beth first started college, she knew she was interested in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies. But when she began taking classes, she found she was more interested in the spirituality of Islam than its politics. Then, in 2008, this 6-foot-tall, Irish-Catholic girl from upstate New York made the decision to convert to Islam. A confident, and deep-thinking young woman, Beth describes how this new identity feels natural to her even when it is causing tension in her family.

I Didn't Know That (You Were A Muslim) is a short portrait of Beth's spiritual journey by independent producer Tali Singer. After the story, listen to a conversation Tali and I had about finding a good story and why being an independent producer is not for everyone.

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Couple links to help y'all out: In our conversation, Tali mentions apprenticing with Dmae Roberts and what a grant-writing beast Dmae is. In fact, she is a such an expert, she a has a great, resourceful blog on the topic: Funding Your Bliss. This is well worth a look through if you are setting out on your own for any project for which you need funding.

Tali and I also talk about the Third Coast International Audio Festival, where we met! Third Coast is a radio conference and competition for audio producers. Tali was part of the Pitch Panel, a session that allowed producers to pitch their stories face to face with editors of  national shows and popular podcasts. Listen to both of those pitch sessions here and here, along with more session audio from Third Coast if you can't make it until 2012. Tali mentions that this conference was overwhelming (and I agree!), so we both should have reviewed Dmae's article on Conference Mapping.

Hear more of Tali's profiles over at PRX.


Intro music is called Journey To The Moon by DjCode / CC BY-SA 3.0

Outro music is called Mamma Roots Daddy by Lax-o-mat / CC BY-SA 3.0