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Weekend Edition Saturday

Saturdays, 8am - 10am

NPR's Peabody Award-winning correspondent Scott Simon captures the spirit of Saturday with an informative and worldly blend of news and analysis, and special features including the topics of sports, gardening, entertainment and more.

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Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. SCOTT SIMON, HOST: Holidays can be hell. The rounds of parties with toasts of warm white wine or spiked red wine punch, people saying oh, come on now, just a sip and even simple friendly inquiries like so, how you been, can be especially rough on those fighting to recover from addiction to drinking or drugs. Neil Steinberg, a columnist at the Chicago Sun-Times and author of the memoir "Drunkard: A Hard-Drinking Life" and Sara Bader,...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. SCOTT SIMON, HOST: Silicon Valley has reportedly done some soul-searching after last month's presidential election. Many in high-tech supported Hillary Clinton and have criticized Facebook and Google for being vehicles to spread fake news stories, many of which vilified Clinton. And some wonder if Silicon Valley entrepreneurs lack understanding and concern for those millions of Americans left behind by the technological innovation...

The Latest In Sports

Dec 3, 2016

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. SCOTT SIMON, HOST: Time now for sports. (SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) SIMON: And did you hear? B.J. Leiderman writes our theme music. LeBron James played his friend and former teammate Dwyane Wade last night, and he walked in wearing a Cubs jersey. Here's a man who lives by his word. Howard Bryant of ESPN joins us now. Howard, thanks so much for being with us. HOWARD BRYANT: Good morning, Scott. SIMON: How did this... BRYANT: I know that made...

I always had a wonderful time in Fidel Castro's Cuba, and usually wound up feeling bad about it. The island is beautiful, the people even sunnier: warm and friendly, especially to Americans. The responsables — government minders — assigned to each reporting crew would tease me about being from Chicago. "Your mobsters used to run this place," they'd say. "Sam Giancana, The Godfather. You made our men bellboys and our women prostitutes." And then they'd treat you to mojitos and fabulous music....

TSA Takes To Twitter For AMA

Nov 26, 2016

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. SCOTT SIMON, HOST: It's the holiday season - packed buses, jammed-up freeways and millions heading to the airport with suitcases full of, well, anything you might imagine. BOB BURNS: When you see some of these items, you just have to wonder what the thought process is while they were packing. SIMON: That's Bob Burns of the Transportation Security Administration. He used to screen passengers at the Cincinnati airport. BURNS: You have...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5bgemCaaQkU Andy Grammer's latest single, "Fresh Eyes," is a love song — but it grew in meaning when he filmed the music video on Skid Row in Los Angeles. Over the course of the video shoot, the pop singer and his team provided haircuts, clean clothes, meals and kindness to people seeking shelter at the Union Rescue Mission in L.A. "We probably spent, I don't know, eight to 10 hours down there, just to really get to know people and share some love with them,"...

During the campaign, Donald Trump railed against "sanctuary cities" — generally understood to be jurisdictions where local law enforcement doesn't cooperate sufficiently with federal immigration authorities. Sanctuary cities were an especially hot issue because of the death of Kate Steinle , a tourist shot by a Mexican national in San Francisco in 2015. In an August campaign speech, Trump promised to "end" sanctuary cities by blocking their federal funding. But keeping that promise will be...

The most contentious presidential campaign and election in memory has many people dreading the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. Some have even canceled plans , unwilling to face family members on the other side of the country's hardening political divide. Not so for the McNeish family of Roanoke, Va., though they still differ mightily on what to expect from a President Trump over the next four years. "I have no faith in him whatsoever," says Danny, 35, who works with a company that supplies and...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BCEvfVzrkPc Nina Diaz joined the punk band Girl in a Coma when she was just 13 years old. It was her sister's band, but she quickly made a name for herself as a fierce and magnetic vocalist, guitarist and songwriter. Around that same time, she also started drinking. Then came drugs. It wasn't long before she struggled with full-on addiction to alcohol, cocaine and meth. Now Diaz is clean, and she's just released a new solo album, The Beat Is Dead. The record...

Donald Trump's election win has focused attention on his business interests around the world and how they might affect his foreign policy. One such place is Turkey, an important NATO ally neighboring the hot spots of Syria, Iraq and Iran. By far the most prominent reminders of the U.S. president-elect in Turkey are Istanbul's own Trump Towers. They rise above the Bosporus Strait on the city's European side, twin glass and steel edifices bearing the familiar Trump brand. In this case, it's...

The Karamlesh village meeting begins the traditional way, with Christian prayers led by a priest, murmured and sung, lingering in the evening air. But the meeting's not in the actual village of Karamlesh. It's 40 miles away in the northern Iraqi city of Erbil, on red plastic chairs under a dust-yellow sky, next to the corrugated trailers some of these people have been living in since 2014 when the Islamic State took their village. Karamlesh is one of a cluster of Christian villages nestled in...

Is Birdfeeding Just, Well, For The Birds?

Nov 12, 2016

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. SCOTT SIMON, HOST: Time now for some Talkin' Birds. (SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "ROCKIN' ROBIN") UNIDENTIFIED SINGERS: (Singing) Tweedly-deedly-dee (ph). UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: A bird show - I like that. I love birds. (SOUNDBITE OF WHISTLING) UNIDENTIFIED SINGERS: (Singing) Tweedly-deedly-dee (ph). UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Ray Brown's Talkin' Birds. UNIDENTIFIED SINGERS: (Singing) Tweet. SIMON: Ray Brown is host of the radio show and podcast Talkin'...

2016: An Election Year That Pervaded Sports

Nov 12, 2016

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. SCOTT SIMON, HOST: In this political year, many athletes used their celebrity to make statements about our country. We're joined now by our friend, NPR's Tom Goldman. Tom, thanks for being with us. TOM GOLDMAN, BYLINE: My pleasure, Scott. SIMON: Michael Jordan famously said he didn't want to get involved in politics 'cause everybody buys Air Jordans. He didn't want to offend a potential customer. But LeBron James, this year,...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. SCOTT SIMON, HOST: A couple of brothers from Slovakia are the fastest grave diggers in Central Europe. And they say it's a dream job. Ladislav and Csaba Skladan won the grave-digging championships at this week's International Exhibition of Funeral, Burial and Cremation Services. Ten teams using only picks and shovels dug graves 5 feet deep, 6 and a half feet long and 3 feet wide. It turns out that Slovak graveyards can be crowded. So...

While the race at the top of the ballot between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton consumes the nation's attention, a series of consequential district attorney races around the country could reshape the criminal justice system from the ground up. One of those races is in the Orlando area, in one of Florida's largest judicial circuits. With no general election opponent, Aramis Ayala is highly likely to become Florida's first black state's attorney in an area with 1.3 million residents. She'll...

How Shirley Collins Got Her Voice Back

Nov 5, 2016

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JvVpKpPx04U http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_QMW4mv6As For nearly four decades, Shirley Collins ' presence has been an absence. One of the most striking voices of British folk music from the 1950s through the '70s, she helped pave the way for younger musicians by blending folk with jazz and rock. But an emotional crisis robbed her of her singing voice, and she vanished from the music scene — until now. The 81-year-old Collins has just released her first album in...

Troll dolls, those novelty toys with fluorescent Don King hair, are now the stars of their own movie. It's a balance between feel-good fun and the kind of offbeat humor that aims to keep adults in their seats. Tending to these relentlessly charming creatures is veteran animator Mike Mitchell. He's worked with many different, er, species (a sponge, chipmunks, ogres) in his career. Mitchell claims Shrek is the most difficult of all of them. Trolls, he says, are by far the easiest. That's...

I know baseball is not real life. While Chicago's streets teemed with loud whoops and waving banners as the Cubs won their first World Series in 108 years, 18 more people were killed over two days on the south and west sides of the city. The number of homicides in Chicago has surged past 600 this year. 2016 could be the city's deadliest year in nearly 20, and the people in those afflicted neighborhoods, usually a long way from Wrigley Field, will remember this year more for their losses than...

How 'Food Truck Voting' Is Catching On In One Idaho County

Oct 29, 2016

Elections officials in one Idaho county have found a delicious new way to get out the vote: by bringing "food truck voting" straight to the people. OK, so it's not a real food truck. You can't get a meal there. The Ada County mobile voting booth is actually a converted cargo trailer, complete with walk-up windows and a giant "I voted" sticker painted on the side. As the most populous county in Idaho (the capital of Boise is the county seat and most urban city in the mostly rural state), Chief...

The Berlin Wall was a scar — a concrete and barbed wire boundary that divided families, East and West, communism and capitalism, tyranny and democracy. People died trying to climb over it while others labored to carve tunnels beneath it. In his new book, The Tunnels, Greg Mitchell writes about a time in the early 1960s when two groups of diggers built tunnels that were filmed and financed by U.S. television networks. Those networks wanted to turn acts of daring into primetime specials. But...

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