Why's That?

Second Friday of the month at 6:44 am, 8:44 am and 5:44 pm

Why's That? explores the things in Southwest Michigan – people, places, names  – that spark your curiosity. We want to know what makes you wonder when you're out and about. 

Maybe it's a question you've had for years, or maybe it's just come up. Perhaps it rests on a subtle observation, like this one about ABC streets in Kalamazoo. Or maybe you just saw something, found it strange, and wanted to know more about it. That's what happened in "A Tiny Park with a Tragic Story."

From train signals to watersheds, from unusual houses to water hardness, we hope you'll let us know what in Southwest Michigan makes you ask "Why's That?" It could be the start of a great radio story.

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

When Steven Lange passes the marker at the edge of Vicksburg's Clark Park that summarizes the village's beginnings, the end of the text gives him pause.

“It says on October 18th, 1871 the village was incorporated as Brady. But one day later a petition passed to rename it Vicksburg. And that’s the part that was so curious. Why would you name a village any name and then one day later switch its name officially?” he asks.

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

You might have already heard the “Why’s That?” question for February. WMUK Underwriting Manager Anders Dahlberg asked it in a promo for “Why’s That?” last summer.

"Why is it that in order to leave the Kalamazoo-Battle Creek International Airport you have to go through that weird airlock?"

After that promo aired, some of you got in touch to say that you knew what Anders was talking about and wanted to hear an answer.

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

Mark Kole was traveling a few years ago when he noticed something strange. “I went on vacation to Boston," he says. "And looking at the map I see alphabetical streets and I’m thinking, okay, I know these streets." He knew them because they had the same names, and ran in the same order, as four streets in Kalamazoo Township.

Pete Strazdas / WMU Facilities

If you’ve followed the path of Arcadia Creek, you know it disappears for a while near Western Michigan University’s campus. You might have also noticed that Waldo Stadium is near the point where the creek moves underground. Listener Carl Doubleday wondered: does the creek run under Waldo Stadium?

Rebecca Thiele / WMUK

Each month, “Why’s That?” takes a question you ask about Southwest Michigan and tries to find an answer. You can submit your idea for the show and, through Sunday, vote on our topic for November.

Listener Laurel Eppstein asked our question for October. Eppstein lives in Comstock Township, and she hears trains pass by often.