The Iowa Podcast

The Iowa Podcast

You probably heard about it from a friend getting your morning coffee at Brewhemia or Daisy Chain. Or perhaps you saw your favorite Iowan post about it? Maybe you searched the net for something that interested you. So, what is The Iowa Podcast? It's Real Iowans, talking about real events and stuff within the state worth paying attention to. It seems like even objective news today is pushing some kind of agenda. You won't find that garbage here! We certainly won't shy away from real issues, and we certainly won't stay away from difficult questions, but on The Iowa Podcast we will never take our guests out of context or edit their comments in any way (unless we both agree of course—sometimes people say dumb stuff or cough in the microphone!)


February 27, 2024 33 mins

I drank live bacteria on a podcast and lived to tell the tale. Not only was it delicious, but Jake Troja, founder of Kismet Kombucha explains why it’s actually good for me. Jokes aside, Troja’s journey into Kombucha, a naturally fermented beverage, started when he and his wife were looking for healthy alternatives. 

What started as a hobby turned into a business during the pandemic. Today, Kismet is in Hy-Vee, Fareway, and many oth...

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Chief Dana Wingert is in charge of Iowa's largest Police force. In the last few years he recalls riots, protests, the defund the Police movement, and removal of the Student Resource Officer (SRO) program at Des Moines Public Schools. With a rise in violence in the schools, is it time to bring officers back into the schools? Are his officers seeing the impact of anti-Police rhetoric? 

Wingert discusses department accountability, his...

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Hawkeye basketball superstar, Caitlin Clark, was knocked to the ground when a fan rushed the court causing injury concerns. Thankfully Clark is fine, but student athletes 22 and under like Clark are more injury prone than before, says Dr. Brett McDonough of Delta Health. Shoulder and elbow surgeries have increased by 500%, and ACL surgeries over 400%. What’s going on?

McDonough has worked with Minnesota Vikings and Twins players, t...

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After closing their Clive location in July of 2021, Table 128 will officially re-open in downtown Des Moines in mid March. Facing numerous delays, the restaurant’s future was a mystery until now. In this exclusive interview, Executive Chef and owner, Lynn Pritchard explains what’s new, what remains unchanged, and tells the story on how restaurateurs like him pivoted to survive during the COVID pandemic. 

Pritchard also tells how re...

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Newly elected Mayor of Des Moines, Connie Boesen has completed her first 30 days in office and she explains the feedback she’s heard, and how she plans on attracting businesses back to Des Moines. Boesen takes the role at a challenging time with nearly 1 million square feet in Des Moines empty, and businesses like Nationwide and Wells Fargo pulling staff out of downtown.

Boesen explains how difficult it is for local businesses to n...

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Winter is so hot right now, at least if you're in Northwestern Iowa. Tomorrow, Iowans and folks from around the country will jump in a frozen lake, play human foosball, broomball, and fly 30-100ft massive kits. Kiley Zankwoski, the Director of Marketing and Events for The University of Okoboji Winter Games tells us what to expect and how to participate. 

This unique event transforms cabin fever into a vibrant festival, drawing thou...

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Mike Berland worked with President Bill Clinton, Senator Hillary Clinton and Mayor Michael Bloomberg and he explains how the AP was able to call the Iowa Caucuses for Trump early. He also discussed why pollsters like himself rarely use polls to predict results for national elections. 

Berland is a political powerhouse. He goes into detail on what the Iowa caucus results really show, and why Nikki Haley despite a 3rd place finish is...

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As blizzard conditions roll into Iowa, host Justin Brady started a Spaces event on (fka as Twitter.) Iowans who joined were Roger Riley of Channel 13 reporting from Ames. Elias Johnson of Channel 13 reporting from Urbandale, along with Mario Rossi of Channel 5 from Des Moines, Nelson Bontrager from Bloomfield, and Nancy Mwirotsi from Des Moines.

The consensus across the state is still that travel is not advised, especially as...

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The Iowa Caucuses take place January 15th and Jeff Kaufmann, Chair of the Iowa Republican Party tells us what to expect, which candidates are favored, and why the one who skipped Iowa will be skipping the White House. He also explains why Iowa Democrats can still save the Iowa Caucuses, and what happened in 2012 when Romney was falsely announced as the winner.

Kaufmann also explains what party unity look...

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The success rate for ending homelessness in Iowa can go from 5% to 80% but spending more money isn't it. After fighting homelessness for over 30 years, Andy Bales returns to Iowa from Los Angeles infamous skid row and he has a strong message for Iowans. Spending billions of dollars won't fix it. 

In the 90s Bales founded Good Samaritan Urban Ministries. Homeless youth who went through the program are still successful and thriving n...

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Iowa has quite the past and tomorrow (December 28th) marks the anniversary of Iowa becoming the 29th state in the Union. Most Iowans don't know about Iowa's rich heritage and why, at least in part, we have the French to thank for our great state. Leo Landis, State Curator, State Historical Society of Iowa shares all the juicy details, both the good and bad. 

Landis is also the Museum Curator of the State Historical Museum of Iowa a...

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Iowans live in a leading agriculture state but do many of us truly understand the science of farming? Do we know what no-till is or why it's important? Do we know why soil quality is eroding? Jayson Ryner, founder ReEnvision Ag, and Iowan farmer, explains soil degradation and what his company invented to fix the problem. 

Farmers are often faced with a delicate balance of producing, but also making long-term sustainable choices. Ti...

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One Iowa town is known for having the largest gardens in the state of Iowa, and just in time for Christmas and Hanukkah they have transformed their entire outdoor garden space into what they're calling a Winter Wonderscape. Ed Lyon, Director of Reiman Gardens talks about winter experience.

Reiman Gardens are the largest gardens in the state of Iowa with tens of thousands of plant varieties and flowers. They have a surprising amount...

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Guest host Greg Bailey interviews Brian Gumm, founder of Ross Street Roasting, a rural Iowa coffee tradition turned national brand. Gumm shares the company's origin, tracing its humble beginnings to the essence of its creation and the early days' customer reception. He delves into the roots, motivations, and initial challenges faced while establishing the specialty coffee roasting business. The conversation touches on the company's...

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Iowa’s largest mall has some surprising facts and figures. Did you know many retailers designate central Iowa as one of their top 5 retail locations by revenue? And why in a time malls across the country, why is one Iowa mall doing so well? We sit down with Randy Tennison, the head honcho of Jordan Creek Town Center which is 99% full, to ask him what they’re doing differently. 

Tennison gives the breakdown of new stores, and why pe...

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The biggest critics of The Honey Creek Resort at Lake Rathbun are its new owners. Beth and Terry Henderson had originally planned on working with the resort to host some events for their agriculture company, but quickly ran into a problem: the resort fell short of their expectations. So they bought it. Even though they took over in April, they’ve already been quickly renovating the property and have no plans to stop until they hit ...

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“I think skepticism is warranted.” says Joseph Nelson, CEO of A.I company Roboflow regarding President Biden’s new executive order focused on artificial intelligence (AI). Nelson was quick to point out that while the objective of Biden’s order appears to have good intentions, regulators should use caution or they may inadvertently stifle innovation in multiple sectors like healthcare or the environment. 

While regulations may seem ...

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The most beautiful and best Iowa Park may be found in your corner of the state claims Sally Ortgies, the “Iowa Park Lady.” Ortgies has visited all Iowa state parks and has seen every corner of Iowa and knows better than anyone the beauty it offers. She has recommendations in your part of the state. 

It took Ortgies just over one year to complete her tour of all state parks but she says the experience was well worth it. In NE Iowa, ...

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The Hamas slaughter of innocent Israeli citizens and the Jewish people is enough evil for a lifetime, but pro-Hamas protests in Iowa have the Iowa Jewish population noticeably concerned, saddened and sick. As state and city leaders rally around our Jewish population, now’s the time to stand up, says Jarad Bernstein, Executive Director of The Jewish Federation of Greater Des Moines.

Despite threats to kill Jewish people, Bernstein’s...

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You may have heard of The Villages of Van Buren, but what is it exactly? Is it a town? A county? An entertainment destination? Not quite. Emily Starnes, the executive director, explained the background of the area, and told the story of when Missouri threatened to invade Iowa over honey trees. (Iowa won)

The Villages of Van Buren is actually 11 small towns with a combined population of just over 7,000 in Van Buren county. Not only ...

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