Kirby Rambin

Host, The Boot

Kirby Rambin is a natural entertainer, having played violin since the age of 9 and performing publicly since he was just 12. As a teen, he performed with the Monroe Youth Symphony and the Louisiana All-State Orchestra.

After graduating from Rayville High School, he enrolled in the University of Louisiana Monroe and performed with both the Monroe Symphony Orchestra and the Brandon Community Orchestra in Brandon, Florida. He has studied under Ildiko Lusk, Ye Tao, and Christopher Thompson.

Kirby plays many genres, including: blues, jazz, traditional, Cajun, and country, all with a unique style inspired by his Louisiana Delta roots and his time playing at the Green Iguana Blues Jam in Tampa, Florida. He has performed at the Louisiana Catfish Festival, the Teddy Bear Festival, the Northeast Louisiana Food and Music Festival, and the Northeast Louisiana Music Awards, among many others.

Kirby also shares his gifts with violin students of all ages at GraceNote Music Academy, and served as Director of the Orchestra at the former Excellence Academy Charter Middle School for the Performing Arts in Monroe.

KEDM is a bit of a family tradition for Kirby. His grandfather helped bring the station to northeast Louisiana, and he is thrilled to be helping give a voice to our region.

Kirby currently lives in Monroe with his wife, Anna, who teaches AP Literature at Neville High School.

Ways to Connect

Miss Louisiana Organization / Steven Palowski Photography, LLC

As the Miss Louisiana pageant approaches on Saturday June 25, The 2015 winner, April Nelson prepares to pass the crown to the this year's winner. 

The contest is part of the Miss America Program, in which Nelson placed third runner up. She says that the Miss America program is not only the largest scholarship program for young women in the world, but also fosters the spirit of volunteering and service. 

Dr. Sandra Lunte

With summer in full swing, many parents are trying to keep education a priority for their children during these months before school returns.

The University of Louisiana Monroe's School Visual and Performing Arts hosts several camps designed to encourage students to continue their pursuit of art as well as academics. With many camps focusing on STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) Director of VAPA Derle Long says there is a great need to emphasize the importance of arts education as well.

Louisiana sChapter Alzheimer's Association

With over 5 million cases, Alzheimer's disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States.

Despite this sobering statistic, many people don't know a lot of definitive information about the disease, or are afraid to get tested. The Louisiana Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association is working to change this fact. Representatives travel across the Twin Cities this month to spread information in honor of Alzheimer's Awareness month.

www.vecteezy.com

One of the most pressing issues in Ouachita Parish is the state of health of citizens who live here and the many social, economic, and racial divides that hinder improvement.

The Louisiana Public Health Institute hosts a Health Equity Summit June 23 from 8 a.m to 4:30 p.m., and June 24 from 8:30 a.m. to noon .

Michelle Tripp / Strauss Theatre Center

Departing from the typical murder mystery style so common in dinner theater, The Strauss Theater presents the lively comic tale The Flop Friday June 17 and Saturday June 18 at 6:30 p.m.

The play is based on the classic story of The Odd Couple, and follows the four poker buddies Murray, Roy, Vinnie, and Speed away from the famous duo. The story involves a friendly game of poker that keeps getting interrupted with hilarious results.

Courtesy of ChrisMcDougall.com

Born To Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen by journalist Christopher McDougall is the 2016 River Reads selection by the Ouachita Parish Public Library.

Born To Run tells the story of McDougall's quest to find the source of his foot pain. The trail eventually leads him to Mexico's rugged and remote Copper Canyons, where the legendary running tribe called the Tarahumara call home.

Biedenharn Museum and Gardens

The Biedenharn Museum and Gardens hosts a truly unique event June 17 and 18. 

The Living Fountain presentation is a live performance art piece returning to the Biedenharn after nearly seven years. The event is part of the welcome home ceremony for the museum's own ELsong Maiden Fountain which has been under restoration since being damaged in the 2014 tornado.

"It's really a neat program," says Museum Director Ralph Calhoun, "It's beautiful. It's moving; it's the kind of thing you watch and you just get goose bumps."

masurmuseum.org

The Masur Museum of Art welcomes its newest artist-in-residence, Beili Liu, on Tuesday June 14, and hosts a reception for the 53rd Annual Juried Competition on Saturday June 25. Summer art camps are also in full swing.

"Every two years or so we choose an artist that doesn't have anything to do with Louisiana. We bring them in to experience Monroe, our culture, and our community, and create artwork that relates to their experiences while here," says Executive Director Evelyn Stewart.

Monroe Chamber of Commerce

Relocating to a new city can be difficult for both individuals and families.

The Monroe Chamber of Commerce hosts an event to help new residents settle into the area, called "Ouachita 101," Thursday, June 23 from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Century Link Auditorium.

Over 100 local businesses and organizations host booths with a chance to meet representatives from local news agencies, the Northeast Louisiana Arts Council, volunteer groups, the University of Louisiana Monroe and local governments.

Union Parish Museum of History and Art

Those who answer the call to serve our country are worth remembering.

On Thursday, June 9 at 5 p.m., Union Parish Museum of History and Art hosts a presentation recognizing local veterans' connection to the past and paying tribute to their service.

Historian Guy Miller's presentation focuses on the history of the squadron of P-40 fighters, the "Flying Tigers" led by Monroe native General Claire Chennault. The fighters played a pivotal role in the Pacific campaign. The talk works in conjunction with extensive military exhibit currently on display at the museum. 

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