The California Report Magazine California: creative, bold, innovative. And vast. Home to almost 40 million people. But it's hard to meet your neighbors, much less get to know the whole state. So join host Sasha Khokha on a road trip for your ears, and your imagination. Visit the places and meet the people who make the Golden State unique, from a homeless college student in Oakland, to a cattle ranching mom in the Sierra foothills, a Vietnamese pop star in Orange County, and a gym owner who performs exorcisms near Ventura. Intimate stories, every week on The California Report Magazine.
The California Report Magazine

The California Report Magazine

From KQED

California: creative, bold, innovative. And vast. Home to almost 40 million people. But it's hard to meet your neighbors, much less get to know the whole state. So join host Sasha Khokha on a road trip for your ears, and your imagination. Visit the places and meet the people who make the Golden State unique, from a homeless college student in Oakland, to a cattle ranching mom in the Sierra foothills, a Vietnamese pop star in Orange County, and a gym owner who performs exorcisms near Ventura. Intimate stories, every week on The California Report Magazine.

Most Recent Episodes

Remembering the Rainbow Sign: The Short But Powerful Reign of Berkeley's 1970s Black Cultural Center

Today, it's an unassuming beige building on a busy Berkeley street. But in the 1970s, the Rainbow Sign was a groundbreaking center for Black culture, politics, and art. It hosted dozens of high-profile Black thought leaders and performers, including James Baldwin, Nina Simone, Maya Angelou, and Shirley Chisholm. The Rainbow Sign was open to all – as a performance venue, political organizing space, and cafe. It lasted just a few short years, from 1971-1977. But it left profound mark on the young people who attended concerts and performances there, including Vice President Kamala Harris. This episode first aired on January 7, 2022.

Remembering the Rainbow Sign: The Short But Powerful Reign of Berkeley's 1970s Black Cultural Center

As Protections for Renters Vanish, One California Family Navigates the Eviction Process

In 2021, we brought you a story from reporter Kori Suzuki about Dahbia Benakli. She was a preschool teacher who lived in Walnut Creek, a suburb in the San Francisco Bay Area. She and her two kids were facing eviction from their apartment. That story ended in an uncertain place, with Dahbia waiting to find out whether or not she'd get to keep her apartment. In December, her landlord took them to court for refusing to leave their home. Across California, the number of evictions is rising. As public health restrictions around COVID have lifted, emergency housing protections like a statewide ban on evictions are also disappearing. And without them, more and more people are getting kicked out of their homes. In an update to the story, Kori Suzuki tells us about what happened to Dahbia and her family. This story is about what this moment is like for a lot of renters right now - and the options you might have if you find an eviction notice on your doorstep.

As Protections for Renters Vanish, One California Family Navigates the Eviction Process

A Teen Activist On Saving the Future; Reporter Investigates His HS Journalism Teacher; Pir...

How to Save the World: Audio Diaries from a High School Climate Activist Survey after survey shows people who are Gen-Z – born between 1996 and 2012 – consider climate change to be the biggest challenge we're facing. KCRW's Caleigh Wells followed one teen climate leader in Los Angeles, Paola Hoffman, for months. She collected audio diaries and captured her speeches at climate strikes, her testimony before the state legislature, and her high school graduation...all while Paola carried the weight of the world on her shoulders. An Investigative Reporter Digs into His Own High School Journalism Teacher's Troubling Behavior We've brought you several stories about high school students across California who've been speaking out against sexual harassment and abuse from their peers as part of the #MeToo movement. But there's also a disturbing pattern of cases emerging in which teachers are being accused of harassing and grooming high school students, especially girls. Host Sasha Khokha talks about this trend with Matt Drange, a Senior Correspondent at Business Insider. For a recent story, he went back to his own high school in Rosemead in the San Gabriel Valley. His article is titled "He Was My High School Journalism Teacher. Then I Investigated His Relationship With Teenage Girls." Hidden Gems: The Pirate Ship on Big Bear Lake Set in the San Bernardino Mountains, Big Bear Lake is a popular tourist destination for Southern California families looking for snow in the winter, and lakeside recreation in the summer –swimming, fishing, and of course boating. For our Hidden Gems series, reporter Amanda Font set sail on a historic vessel that celebrates pirates and pop culture.

A Teen Activist On Saving the Future; Reporter Investigates His HS Journalism Teacher; Pir...

Oscar Gomez: The Forgotten Revolutionary

This week, we're teaming up with our friends at LAist Studios to share an episode from the new season of their podcast "Imperfect Paradise: The Forgotten Revolutionary." It's the story of Oscar Gomez, a radio DJ and Chicano student leader during a time of explosive anti-immigrant political rhetoric in the early 90s. Some people thought Gomez was going to be the next Cesar Chavez. But then, he died near the UC Santa Barbara campus, under mysterious circumstances. KPCC reporter Adolfo Guzman-Lopez first started digging into Gomez's story with a story we aired back in 2019, when UC Davis awarded Gomez a posthumous degree. The new podcast investigates Gomez's death, his legacy, and how reflecting on Gomez forced Guzman-Lopez to examine his life, activism, and journalism.

Ojai's Famous Pixie Tangerine Struggles; Program Trains Incarcerated Men to Help Fight Fir...

The Ojai Valley's climate has been ideal for growing certain tree crops. But climate change is making it windier, drier, and hotter there. As Lisa Morehouse tells us, none of that is good for farming. And neither is Ojai's rising cost of real estate. And this summer, incarcerated youth will help fight California's wildfires. These young men are hacking containment lines with hand tools. It's part of a program within the juvenile justice system meant to provide job training. But as KQED's health correspondent Lesley McClurg explains, it's been all but impossible to find firefighting jobs once they're released. Plus, you can find boba shops all over California. Some stick to the original tea with tapioca balls. Others expand their menus with smoothies, slushes, and coffee. So to start a boba business that stands out takes some creativity. For our series Hidden Gems, Amy Mayer found a surprising specialty at San Bruno's Kiss My Boba.

Ojai's Famous Pixie Tangerine Struggles; Program Trains Incarcerated Men to Help Fight Fir...

Road Trip: Unearthing California's Hidden Gems

California is full of incredible, unique places. Even for those of us who have lived here all our lives, there are unusual, off-the-beaten-path spots we've never even heard of. The California Report Magazine has been exploring some of those places as part of our Hidden Gems series. In 2017, Sasha Khokha hosted this Hidden Gems show from a zipline in Sonoma County, with help from producer Suzie Racho. They soared above the redwoods – with their microphones, headphones and tape recorders. And we're happy to report that all of the places we visited back then, from Nancy's Airport Cafe in Willows to L.A.'s Donut Man, are still around and open to the public.

How a Young Gay Man Survived One of the Darkest Eras in California Queer History

Today, California is seen as a haven for people across a broad spectrum of human sexuality and gender identity. But fifty years ago, even here, being gay meant living in the shadows. It was essentially a crime. It was also considered a mental illness, so judges were committing people to psychiatric hospitals as well as to prisons. Lee Romney brings us the story of Gene Ampon, who was a teenager when he was sent to a California state mental hospital in Atascadero for two years. Lee's reporting is in collaboration with Jenny Johnson, a former public defender who helped start and run the San Francisco Behavioral Health Court.

How a Young Gay Man Survived One of the Darkest Eras in California Queer History

Seeking Asylum in CA from Gender-Based Violence; Is Jack Cheese Really From Monterey?

For Immigrants Fleeing Gender-Based Violence, a Long Road to Asylum in US California has long tried to be a welcoming place for immigrants. But sometimes our state's efforts have conflicted with federal policy. Under the Trump administration, the rules changed about just who qualifies for asylum. That has made things rocky for people fleeing persecution based on their gender. KQED's Immigration Editor Tyche Hendricks has been following a woman who escaped years of abuse in Guatemala, and finally made her way to California. Move Over Monterey? Pacifica Lays Claim to Iconic Jack Cheese We've brought you a lot of stories of how iconic California foods and drinks got their start...from the Martini to Rocky Road ice cream. This week, we're diving into the origin story of Monterey Jack Cheese. You might guess with a name like Monterey Jack that it comes from the beachside town of Monterey. But there are rumors that Monterey Jack was actually created in Pacifica, a foggy town just south of San Francisco. In a story from our friends at Bay Curious, reporter Christopher Beale takes us on a journey to find the true origins of Monterey Jack.

Seeking Asylum in CA from Gender-Based Violence; Is Jack Cheese Really From Monterey?

Visiting the Farallon Islands; Experiencing Abortion Before Roe v. Wade; Blues Singer Mari...

'Like You're on a Different Planet': Visiting the Mysterious Farallon Islands If you look west from San Francisco, when the fog is clear and the light is just right, you might be able to see a cluster of islands jutting out of the ocean like sharp, misshapen teeth. The Farallon Islands sit 27 miles west of San Francisco. They get their name from the Spanish word farallón, which means "sea cliff." For our series Hidden Gems, The California Report's Izzy Bloom braved the rough waters to get up close with wildlife a lot of Californians have only ever imagined. Women Share Their Experience of Getting an Abortion Before Roe Made It Legal With abortion rights in jeopardy, many women are sharing their personal stories. For those who terminated pregnancies before it was legal in 1973, the memories can be especially painful. KQED health correspondent Lesley McClurg has the story of three women. Blues Singer Marina Crouse Celebrates a Language She Had to Fight to Learn Fourth-generation Californian Marina Crouse is well known for her powerful voice singing the blues. Now she's got a new album out in Spanish, and it features songs originally sung by Eydie Gorme. Marina Crouse, who's based in the Bay Area city of El Cerrito, has reimagined and re-interpreted Eydie Gorme's music with her new album, "Canto de mi Corazon." Crouse talks to host Sasha Khokha about why she decided to honor Eydie Gorme in this way.

Visiting the Farallon Islands; Experiencing Abortion Before Roe v. Wade; Blues Singer Mari...

New Podcast Visits Central Valley Towns, and Celebrates 'The Other California'

To a lot of people outside our state, California is one of two places: L.A. or San Francisco. Hollywood or high tech. The beaches or the redwoods. And frankly, to a lot of Californians who live here, there's a vast part of our state between L.A. and S.F. that people consider "drive-through" country: the San Joaquin Valley, which stretches from the Sierra Nevada to the Coastal range, from Stockton to Bakersfield. It's a place that – culturally, politically, and geographically – could almost be its own state. It's "The Other California." That's the name of a new podcast from our friends at KVPR that explores the richness of this region. Each episode takes listeners on a journey to visit a different small town. We'll hear excerpts from the podcast, and chat with host Alice Daniel and reporter Kathleen Schock.

New Podcast Visits Central Valley Towns, and Celebrates 'The Other California'