Kitchens all over the Southwest this time of year are filled with the irresistible scent of tamales steaming on the stove.

This Earth Note originally aired on KNAU December 25th, 2019.


Northern Arizona University officials report an enrollment drop of 3.8% for the fall semester.

Alejandro Higuera (Pascua Yaqui), Ket t'ui Photography,

A Flagstaff woman is nearing the end of a 2,000-mile journey across the country … on roller skates. But it’s not just for fun – Daisy Purdy is raising funds to support the work of Navajo Ph.D. Tommy Rock and his all-Indigenous research team who study the devastating environmental and health impacts of abandoned uranium mines on tribal lands. Purdy spoke with KNAU’s Ryan Heinsius about the many what’s propelling her on her two-month journey from the Navajo Nation to the Eastern Band of Cherokee in North Carolina. More info is at

Northern Arizona University has confirmed that some student athletes have tested positive for coronavirus.

Sandra Pascoe Ortiz

Fans of the prickly pear cactus might be familiar with recipes for cactus jelly, cactus candy, and fried cactus pads or nopalitos. But how about a recipe for a biodegradable plastic bag?