Kari Njiiri

Senior News Reporter/Jazz Safari Host

Kari is a senior reporter and long-time host and producer of Jazz Safari, a musical journey through the jazz world and beyond, broadcast Saturday nights on New England Public Radio. Born in New York City, and raised in both Kenya and the U.S., Kari first arrived at NEPR as UMass Amherst student fascinated radio's ability to cross geographic and cultural boundaries. Since then, he has worked in several capacities at the station, from board operator and book-keeper, to production assistant and local host of NPR’s All Things Considered.

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A sign for Tri-County Schools in Easthampton, Massachusetts.
Dan Glaun / MassLive / masslive.com/photos

Tri-County Schools is closed this school year after 30 years in business. The reasons became clear in August when the special education school was hit with abuse allegations.

Springfield Symphony Hall
Greg Saulmon / The Republican - Masslive.com/photos

Solicitations to manage two Springfield, Massachusetts, performance venues are expected to go out later this month. 

Springfield, Massachusetts, Police Commissioner John Barbieri.
The Republican / masslive.com/photos

The first full casino resort in Massachusetts opens this week in Springfield. MGM and city officials say they expect up to 15,000 visitors to attend Friday's grand opening.

A cup of coffee.
Julius Schorzman / Creative Commons

A Japanese company is developing a novel way to connect college students to corporate recruiters: offer free coffee at its cafes in exchange for giving up some personal information.

A CTrail train seen at Union Station in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Frederick J. Gore / Special to The Republican / masslive.com/photos

If you don’t have a car, getting around in western Massachusetts and Connecticut can be tricky. More trains now carry daily passengers between Springfield and Connecticut cities. But the Pioneer Valley Transit Authority is raising bus fares and threatening service cuts. There's a cycle to this: Low ridership can mean weak economic investment near transit stations. And that means even fewer people ride. 

An armed officer outside Sidney High School in Sidney, Ohio.
'G is for Gun' / Kate Way / Julie Akeret

One of the most controversial responses to the spate of deadly school shootings in the U.S. has been the idea of arming teachers. The idea has become a reality in some 13 states.

A car drives past the Mount Ida College sign on Carlson Avenue in Newton, Massachusetts.
Jesse Costa / WBUR

UMass Amherst is defending its move to take over the campus of Mount Ida College in Newton, Massachusetts. The small college last month abruptly announced it would close after this semester.

Progress continues on the MGM Springfield casino project as they look to the grand opening in five months. This is the view along Main Street looking south.
Don Treeger / The Republican / masslive.com/photos

A new survey from Western New England University finds a majority of Springfield, Massachusetts, residents continue to support the MGM casino project downtown, 61 to 26 percent.

San Juan Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz in a PBS NewsHour video from October 2017.
PBS NewsHour / YouTube

The mayor of San Juan, Puerto Rico, is visiting western Massachusetts, starting Wednesday, to discuss Puerto Rico's future and ongoing challenges seven months after Hurricane Maria.

Sarah Elizabeth Charles.
Matthew Pandolfe / Courtesy Sarah Elizabeth Charles

Jazz vocalist Sarah Elizabeth Charles, a native of western Massachusetts, has been making a name for herself nationally.

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