why's that

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

If you’ve heard of Western Michigan University’s particle accelerator, you might have also heard that it’s a secret machine involved in double-secret research. The directors of the lab say that's completely untrue, though it is true that you should not stand next to the machine during some experiments. At a moment that posed no risk, "Why's That?" and mechanical engineering student Peter Grohs saw the facilities up close.


Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

Picture a nineteenth-century school, and what do you see? Simple design, tall windows, somewhere to put a bell? That’s a fair description of a building on Stadium Drive near 9th Street that caught Sue Grossman’s eye.

“I’ve been driving by it all my life because I grew up in this town,” Sue says as we study the front of the building while traffic zips by on Stadium. 


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Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

Even mild winters sometimes get icy. People throw salt on sidewalks and roads, and unless it’s really cold the ice melts.

“But then obviously that liquid goes somewhere at some point,” says Western Michigan University chemistry professor Andre Venter.


Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

Every city has its major streets, often with familiar names like Lincoln or Vine. Then there’s Kalamazoo’s Westnedge Avenue.

“I’m interested in words and the origins and I’d never encountered this word before,” says Kate Kirk-Greenberg, a grief counselor in Kalamazoo, who asked “Why’s That?” how the street got its name.


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