Donor brings ‘Miss Rumphius’ to station |

Donor brings ‘Miss Rumphius’ to station

The KVMR Community Room has been named after a children's book, "Miss Rumphius," in honor of an anonymous $250,000 donor who requested the name.
Submitted photo |

In honor of the anonymous donor to the Bridge Street Project, who has given $250,000 for naming rights to the Community Room in the new KVMR 89.5 FM building in downtown Nevada City, the station recently asked visual artist and KVMR volunteer broadcaster Jerianne Van Dijk to paint a lupine-inspired illustration at the entrance to the room.

Why lupines?

Well, at the request of the donor, the room now bears the name of a fabled, award-winning children’s book: “Miss Rumphius” by the late Barbara Cooney.

“A book that I read many times to my children, it demonstrates the community spirit and idealism that we hope KVMR represents,” according to the station’s general manager, Julie Chiarelli.

“Miss Rumphius” — which snared the 1983 National Book Award for Children’s Books in the hardcover picture books category — is the life story of fictional Miss Alice Rumphius, who, as a young girl, told her grandfather she wanted to go to faraway places and live near the sea as she got old.

“There is a third thing you must do,” her grandfather told her. “You must do something to make the world more beautiful.”

According to the children’s book, which Cooney wrote and illustrated, Miss Rumphius sought a way to do just that and found it in planting lupines in the wild.

There you go.

The book ranks number 13 among the “Top 100 Picture Books” in a survey published by School Library Journal.

“Read the book,” suggests the anonymous donor, “and I think you’ll understand why it’s so special to me.”

“Making the world more beautiful seems like a pretty lofty but wonderful goal in life,” according to the donor. “Whatever you interpret beautiful to mean…do it.”

“Already we have seen some beautiful things emerge from that room,” notes Chiarelli. “House concerts with soaring harmonies, training classes bringing out the best in new broadcasters, brainstorming sessions for KVMR’s future, awards shows for worthy non-profits, Wild and Scenic film festival media center, you name it.”

The room is also available for community non-profit meetings, events, receptions and other related activities.

The Bridge Street Project — a collaboration between the Nevada City non-commercial radio station and the non-profit 150-year-old Nevada Theatre adjoining the new building — is seeking what it calls the “Bridge To A Million” to reduce short-term construction loans on the new building.

There are still naming opportunities for the project – particularly in the back stage area of the Nevada Theatre. Support for the project is a lifetime legacy that honors the history of Nevada City and ensures a strong foundation for the arts and cultural community into the future. For information on supporting the Theatre renovations and expansion, contact Nevada Theatre General Manager Tom Taylor at 530-265-6161 or

“Just tell them Miss Rumphius sent you to do something beautiful for Nevada City,” smiles KVMR Board of Directors President Diane McIntire.


In a tradition that began nearly two decades ago, KVMR 89.5 FM will celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day with a day-long live remote broadcast Sunday and a day full of special programming from the Nevada City station’s new studios on Monday.

Sunday’s broadcast runs from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. from the “Kulu Fishing Village” at Sycamore Ranch Park, 5390 Highway 20 in Browns Valley. The Yuba County park facility has been the remote site for several years now.

After traditional opening ceremonies and speakers, women’s drum group Otsigeya performs at 10:30 a.m., with an 11 a.m. Women’s Circle headed by Yaqui tribe member Eli Painted Crow, founder of Turtle Women Rising with the theme “Women Walking in Two Worlds in a Balanced Way”. .

Other Sunday activities include Roseville Maidu Center storyteller Mary Ann Myers at 12:50 p.m., Chris Jones discussing his trip to water protector camps in Standing Rock at 1 p.m., and Native American music artists Standing Women at 1:30.

Patricia St. Onge and Alison Ehara-Brown discuss their work with Idle No More SF Bay and their work after signing the Defending Mother Earth Treaty at 2 p.m., plus the afternoon has music from local artists Anni McCann and Ludi Hinrichs.

At 3 p.m., a Descendants Circle will feature members of the Tulalip, Oglala Lakota, Mohawk, Sioux and other tribes and master storyteller Johnny Moses is at 4:15 p.m.


Indigenous Peoples Day includes these special guests on Monday:

–9 a.m. guest Guarionex Delgado discusses the “Doctrine of Discovery” that was used to justify colonization of indigenous lands and people.

–1 p.m. William Greenland discusses the movement to “bring back indigenous music culture.”

–2 p.m. Goodshield Aguilar and Mignon Geli talk about saving the buffalo, buffalo medicine and play music.

–4 p.m. Mohawk singer Lawrence Laughing and Rick Berry are in studio with children singers discussing the 4EEE program, with the Feather River Singers performing later that hour.

–5 p.m. Leaders of the Sierra Native Alliance of Auburn are guests, followed by Richie Ledreagle of Indigenous Circles United of Colusa.

–6 p.m. U.S. swimmer William Snellgrove Saulteaux, elder and teacher, talks about how he was taken from his mother and adopted out of his reservation.

–7:30 p.m., Tribute to the late activist, musician and artist John Trudell.

–8 p.m., Native Hip Hop music special, with Rez Hogs founder Ryan Craig of Yakima Rez Radio in Washington State.

KVMR’s Jennifer Robin is coordinating the day’s studio broadcast


KVMR will pick up the Democracy Now! Pacifica Radio preview of the second presidential debate this Sunday after the Indigenous broadcast and run the entire debate live at 6 p.m.(89.5, streaming).

On The Air is a weekly irreverent look at Nevada City’s volunteer-driven, eclectic community radio station at 89.5 FM and streaming at Complete KVMR schedule available at the station’s website, The station now features an easy-to-use archive of all music shows for two weeks and talk shows for two months at

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