Darren Hellwege


Darren Hellwege has hosted “Morning Edition” for over 27 years on KBIA, and serves as the station’s Sports Director and as host/producer of the “Thinking Out Loud” programs. The series has won a Missouri Broadcasters Association award and recently celebrated its 10th anniversary.

As Sports Director, Darren reports on Tiger athletics both for the station and the KBIA Sports website. He has also served for several years as the “Mizzou Insider” for the “Fescoe in the Morning” show on 610 Sports in Kansas City. Darren is a member of the Football Writers Association of America, United States Basketball Writers Association, and National Collegiate Baseball Writers. His reports from the 2009 NCAA Women’s Final Four basketball tournament were heard nationwide on NPR, he has appeared on ESPN’s “Outside the Lines,” and is a regular guest with Chris Gervino on KOMU-TV’s Sunday night sports program. He previously reported on Mizzou athletics for the Official Sports Report and was the Sports Editor of his high school newspaper for four years, being named in 1984 to the Edmond Memorial Journalism Hall of Fame.

Darren’s commitment to the Mid-Missouri community can be seen in his outreach activities for the station, including work with CanStruction, the Voluntary Action Center, Food Bank of Central and Northeast Missouri, American Red Cross, Boone County Historical Society, Columbia Public Schools and many other charitable organizations. He’s also been active in community theatre, performing with Maplewood Barn Community Theatre, Theatre NXS, and MoHip. Darren coached youth sports for several years with Boys/Girls Club of Columbia, Columbia Diamond Council and Columbia Youth Basketball Association. Darren currently serves on the Board of Directors for ACT (www.actservices.org) and the Missouri River Cultural Conservancy (www.morivcc.org) and is a member of the Boone County Democratic Central Committee. In the past he’s been a member of the Columbia/Boone County Board of Health and the Boone County Mental Health Board of Trustees, and was a board member for the Central Missouri Humane Society and Rock Bridge Christian Church. 

Darren was born in Stillwater, Oklahoma and grew up in Edmond, Oklahoma where he attended the University of Central Oklahoma. Darren and his wife Bonnie have two grown children. Their son Kristian lives in Columbia and daughter Janie Lavelock lives in Pleasant Hill with her husband Jake and is a student at UMKC.

Prior to coming to KBIA, Darren worked for public radio station KCSC (now KUCO, www.kucofm.com) in Edmond and at Oklahoma City radio stations WKY and WWLS. He’s also worked for KFRU and KFMZ in Columbia and KWRT in Boonville.

Darren is an avid genealogist, and enjoys playing guitar, chess, all kinds of music, and - of course - sports. 

Darren is on Twitter at @kbiamorning and his reports on Tiger sports are at @kbiahellwege. Both “Morning Edition” and “Thinking Out Loud” also have Facebook pages.

Ways to Connect

Facebook/Ruthie Mocchia

Have you ever been out on the Missouri River? If so, you know it is big, wide, and muddy. There's also litter in the river. Now, there's a lot less litter thanks to the work of Missouri River Relief. On this week's Thinking Out Loud, Trevor Harris talked with Melanie Cheney about why a cleaner Missouri River matters (Think drinking water.) Also, hear music from Violet Vonder Haar, who will be performing this Saturday's Boonville River Festival.

Shane Epping/MU Disability Center

As thousands of students arrive in Columbia soon for the new school year, much work must happen behind the scenes to prepare. On this week's Thinking Out Loud host Darren Hellwege visits with a range of staff from University of Missouri departments whose work impacts and is impacted by the student experience at MU.

Credit: Arrow Rock Lyceum Theatre

On this weeks' Thinking Out Loud, KBIA's Darren Hellwege talked with Quin Gresham, the Producing Artistic Director for the Arrow Rock Lyceum Theatre about the upcoming season at the theatre.

Credit: Janet Moreland

On this episode of Thinking Out Loud, we meet a woman who took a historic kayak ride from the headwaters of the Missouri River to the Gulf of Mexico. In this week's first segment Janet Moreland shares the story of her ambitious summer 2013 trip. Plus, in this week's second segment, we hear about the Missouri River Cultural Conservancy and that group's May 2 fundraiser.

Karen Mitchell/KBIA

Recently, former MU football player and alumni Michael Sam announced he was gay. KBIA, ESPN and other media outlets continue to thoroughly cover this story. On this weeks' Thinking Out Loud, KBIA's Darren Hellwege looks at how MU's sports administration reacted to Sam's announcement.

Facebook/Keb' Mo'

Blues guitarist and singer Keb'Mo' brings his Delta blues-influenced style to Columbia's Jesse Auditorium next Tuesday. In a web exclusive, here is a segment of KBIA's Darren Hellwege recent phone interview with Keb' Mo'.

Legal Services of Eastern Missouri

This week on Thinking Out Loud, host Darren Hellwege interviews Dan Glazier from Legal Services of Eastern Missouri and Susan Lutt from Mid-Missouri Legal Services.

Listen to Thinking Out Loud each Tuesday afternoon at 6:30 on 91.3fm KBIA.

KBIA/Trevor Harris

On this week's Thinking Out Loud, KBIA's Darren Hellwege talked with organizers of the Third Goal International Film Festival. The festival is an annual one-day festival of film viewings that have the U.S.  Peace Corps as a central theme. This year's festival happens Saturday, February 1 on the MU campus.

Photo by mpclemens, via Flickr. (http://bit.ly/18tm7CX)

Welcome to another edition of Maplewood Barn Radio Theater.

This time, we bring you something a bit different from our normal classic stories -- an original script by our own Brad Buchanan called "Time Stands Still." Brad has done the majority of the adaptations for the radio show over the past couple years, but in this case, he decided to bring you a new story, never before performed.

We hope you enjoy this original production of "Time Stands Still." 

 Sit back, relax and listen here:

The players:

Welcome to another edition of Maplewood Barn Radio Theatre.
 In our continuing efforts to bring you nothing but the best in classic stories, we offer you an audio dramatization of an award winning story, "Golden Dreams," based on the writings of Stephen Leacock. Mr. Leacock is a bit vague about what award it might have won, but perhaps we can learn more from our protagonist, the professor. Let's turn it over to him, so he can tell you all about the book "Golden Dreams."
 Sit back, relax, and listen to the audio play here:

  The players:

Conclusion of the two-part holiday story begun last Friday.


A popular soul singer of the 1960s from St. Louis has died, according to KTVI-TV in St. Louis. Fontella Bass started singing on showboats in the St. Louis area and her early records were produced by Ike Turner. She started off with popularity only in the region, but her recording "Rescue Me" became a smash hit, reaching number one on the billboard charts for four weeks in October of 1965.

Bass later recorded with  jazz outfit "the Art Ensemble of Chicago" and was married to jazz legend Lester Bowie. She was a member of the St. Louis Walk of Fame, with a star on Delmar Boulevard.

Magic, romance, jealousy and silly fairies mix together for this Twelfth Night story by the Victorian satirist.

When amateur theatricals invade a Victorian home, the result is an evening of chaos.

Two grin-inducing yarns – a cowboy’s lament and a detective’s devious deductions – by America’s master of the short story.

A sickly Indian boy sees the world through his bedroom window; by the first non-Western winner of the Nobel Prize for literature.

A nostalgic look at how Thanksgivings in the countryside used to be through the eyes of a beloved sentimental novelist.

Two satirical stories, sending up the immortal Sherlock and the very future of mankind.

A clever impersonator sneaks past the pretensions of two young ladies who think their current suitors are beneath their standards.

The Skull (Dick)

Oct 26, 2012

A Halloween tale about a man who gets a chance to change the course of history – or so he thinks.

A laughter-inducing tour inside the heads of two cultured rivals who never say what they really think.

Jones (Osborne)

Oct 12, 2012

Sometimes winning the girl of a guy’s dreams involve drastic measures, such as telling white lies, giving blood and getting electric shock therapy.

Bertie and Jeeves save another friend from a young man’s greatest fear:  losing the allowance provided by a stingy uncle.

The irrepressible Emma McChesney is back, creating a fashion revolution while facing defeat from the green-eyed monster.

A satirical look at how and why theater melodramas are built and performed.

Do you want to trade your troubles for another life?  Here comes the judge, and his imp, who can make it happen.

Arthur Bryant's in Kansas City
Darren Hellwege / KBIA

This week the 40/40 project takes KBIA's Darren Hellwege to Kansas City, where we find the kind of hospitality some might associate with small towns in our state's largest city at MeMa's bakery downtown. And as our set of photos indicate, Darren also found something else to eat in KC, at his favorite rib joint, the famed Arthur Bryant's.

Darren Hellwege / KBIA

We've heard it from folks in many small towns, "if you have trouble, your neighbors will be there to help you." This week on the 40/40 project, we meet a little boy who's had to learn the hard way how true that is. Gabriel Wilcox was born in February, and on the way home from the hospital, survived a car crash that took the lives of his entire family. Now being raised by his grandmother, Gabriel's gotten help from neighbors all over the Eldon region, as we hear as we talk with Angela Wilcox at an event to raise money for her grandson. It's really true what they say about Missourians, they help out their neighbors when need arises.

Lake of the Ozarks
Darren Hellwege / KBIA

The 40-40 project visits Lake Ozark, which isn't just a fun place to visit for a vacation but is home to a lot of fine people, including a store owner who tells us why she went from spending only the summer tourist season at the Lake to becoming a full time resident of Lake Ozark.

The adventure that brought Bertie and Jeeves to America; uniting young and old lovers on the vaudeville stage.