/ Modified feb 13, 2023 8:12 a.m.

Episode 920

Alva Torres Plaza, Neon Prophet and Chicago Bar, Biofilm Discoveries, St. Philips Art Market

Alva Torres Plaza
The City of Tucson dedicated the TCC Plaza in honor of Alva Bustamante Torres, a fourth-generation Tucsonan and community activist. She was particularly involved in historic preservation efforts of Mexican-American cultural sites. Alva spearheaded these efforts in the early 1970s to preserve La Plaza de la Mesilla in downtown Tucson at the time when massive urban renewal in that area was taking place. Author Lydia Otero advocates for permanence in honor of the work of Alva Torres, an activist for the historic preservation of the old barrio in the ‘60s known as “La Calle”. This TCC Plaza now bears her name and story of advocacy.

Neon Prophet and Chicago Bar
The desert reggae band Neon Prophet has been playing a weekly show at Tucson’s Chicago Bar since 1984. In 2021 British author, Harvey Burgess, recently completed a book, Reggae Night, chronicling the group’s long history, colorful members, community impact, and symbiotic relationship with the venue.

Biofilm Discoveries
Mark Witten is a retired Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Arizona with a long research career looking at lung health and respiratory science, but his most important work might be yet to come. His research has led to the discovery of a type of biofilm derived from lung tissue that reacts to all kinds of tiny substances in the air and water. He's currently developing this biofilm into two key innovations: a biosensor that can detect pathogens in the air, and a revolutionary low-cost desalination method that could transform seawater from the ocean into freshwater that we can drink.

St. Philips Art Market
The Weekend Market at St. Philip's Plaza is a local vendor showcase hosted every Saturday and Sunday. The market is free to anyone and has a little something for everyone; St. Philip's Art Market celebrates Tucson's diverse community with a wide variety of local art and crafts ranging from foods, windchimes, plants, locally sourced cutting boards, and everything in between.

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