Ed Ronco

All Things Considered Host

Ed Ronco came to KNKX in October 2013 as producer and reporter for KNKX’s Morning Edition. Ed started in public radio in 2009 at KCAW in Sitka, Alaska, where he covered everything from city government, to education, crime, science, the arts and more. Prior to public radio, Ed worked in newspapers, including four years at the South Bend (Ind.) Tribune, where he covered business, then politics and government.

Ed grew up in Wyandotte, Mich., a suburb of Detroit, and earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism from Michigan State University.

Ways to Connect

A replica of the Oval Office is one part of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, Calif.
Mark Weston / Flickr

As the nation prepares to pick its next president, we thought we’d take a moment and get some perspective on the people who’ve already held the job.

Knkx travel expert Matthew Brumley says he loves visiting presidential libraries and museums. There are 13 official presidential libraries, and a host of museums dedicated to past presidents.

Dave Nakayama / Flickr

This time of year makes us think of a particular scene in the NBC television series "The West Wing," in which President Bartlet (Martin Sheen) is recording his weekly radio address.

“The weekends will be devoted by many of you to leaf peeping, and football …” he says, his voice trailing off as the engineer stops recording.

Brady Walkinshaw and Pramila Jayapal are running to replace retiring Rep. Jim McDermott in Washington's 7th Congressional District.
Campaign Handouts / Composite by Parker Miles Blohm

Washington state has 10 Congressional districts. But this year, only one of them has an open seat. The 7th District includes the western half of Seattle and everything north of the Ship Canal, along with Shoreline, Mountlake Terrace and Edmonds, plus Vashon Island and Burien to the south.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

Qatar Airways has placed a sizable order with Boeing. The airline ordered a total of 40 jets, comprised of 30 787-9 Dreamliners, and 10 777-300ER aircraft.

Both of those planes are made in the Puget Sound area. The list price for all 40 planes is nearly $12 billion, but large orders typically include discounts.

Catchpenny / Flickr

No one travels alone. Even if you're a party of one during your journey, we all rely on others to get where we need to go. This week, we offer two stories from knkx travel expert Matthew Brumley -- one about needing help, and the other about paying it forward.

Needing Help

Elaine Thompson / Associated Press

Monday is the deadline to register to vote, online or by mail. But it’s also a federal holiday, so post offices are closed.

Because of that, county voter offices will accept registrations postmarked on Tuesday, Oct. 11. 

“The state law does say Oct., 10, but we’re saying ‘Come on, people,'" said David Ammons, spokesman for the Washington Secretary of State's office. "If we followed the letter of the law, those postmarks would not be available on those previous two days.”

Courtesy of John Waters

What you think of the film director John Waters might depend on how you came to know him. Maybe you first saw his work “Hairspray,” a 1988 film with Ricki Lake as a plucky Baltimore teen fighting segregation. It was later the subject of a remake and also adapted as a bright and bouncy musical. Or maybe you know his earlier work, which earned him a reputation for depicting shocking things, like bodily functions, sex acts, and more.

A Road Trip Along California's Rugged Coastline

Sep 29, 2016
Michael Theis / Flickr

The towns of coastal California are great escapes. Far from the gridlocked expressways of San Diego, Los Angeles and San Francisco, they provide relaxing time without the crowds.

But knkx travel expert Matthew Brumley says for him, this trip is all about being behind the wheel of a car.

“It is one of the great drives on the planet,” he said, from a stop in San Luis Obispo. “Today when I was driving, I could see surfers just bobbing out in the waves, and I was longingly looking at them.”

Not Expensive, Unless You Want That

Parker Miles Blohm / knkx

Sheila Edwards Lange, the current president of Seattle Central College, stares out her fourth-floor office window at a changing city. From this building on Seattle’s Capitol Hill, she can see the Space Needle, Key Arena, Puget Sound and some mountains off in the distance.

But she can also see cranes – symbols of a booming city and all the change that brings with it.

David J. Phillip / AP

How do you fly with pets? Heading to the airport with a furry friend in tow often means new rules and regulations. Knkx travel expert Matthew Brumley looked into some best practices, and offers this advice:

Before You Book

Call your airline to make sure there’s room. Space for animals can be limited, both in the cabin and in the pressurized compartment below the passenger cabin.

Monica Spain / knkx

State regulators are recommending a fine of more than $3 million against Puget Sound Energy for a March explosion in Seattle’s Greenwood neighborhood. The blast injured nine firefighters, destroyed two buildings, and caused extensive property damage in the area.

State regulators say the explosion was caused by unauthorized people accessing and damaging the gas line. But they also say Puget Sound Energy did not properly disconnect and seal the line when it was abandoned in 2004. They say PSE committed 17 violations of safety regulations.

Matt Long / Flickr

Seattle is within easy driving distance (less than five hours) of some serious wine country, whether it’s in eastern or central Washington, Oregon’s Willamette Valley, or parts of British Columbia.

There are hundreds of options to suit hundreds of tastes. There’s no way any list we’d assemble would be thorough enough to cover the whole region. So instead of asking knkx travel expert Matthew Brumley where we should enjoy our region’s wine country, we asked him how we should enjoy wine country.

Here’s his advice:

Drive There, Then Park It

University of Puget Sound

Freshman move-in day at Tacoma’s University of Puget Sound looks like you might expect.

Parents study maps under old, shady trees on this 128-year-old campus. Students wear their new keys on lanyards around their necks as they carry bags, pillows and blankets across bright green lawns toward their new dorms. There are hugs, greetings, introductions and a little crying, stifled and otherwise.

Sue Ogrocki / AP

Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson this week said he wants to ban assault-style weapons in Washington state. His announcement came after a shooting this summer at a Mukilteo house party. Three people died and a fourth was seriously injured.

Matthew Brumley / KNKX

When in Rome, they say, do as the Romans. It’s not bad advice in the Pacific Northwest, either.

Natalia Mandelli grew up and lives in Rome, where she’s a professional tour guide. She’s a colleague and good friend of our usual “Going Places” travel expert, Matthew Brumley.

Mandelli visited the United States last month, and spoke to 88.5’s Ed Ronco about going from tour guide to tourist.

Ed Ronco / knkx

Expect heavy traffic in Seattle this weekend. 

The enormous Bumbershoot festival happens at Seattle Center. The University of Washington Huskies football team opens its season at home this weekend. The Mariners are playing. And the giant gaming convention PAX West is going on at the Washington State Convention Center.

Nick Ut / AP

Our travel expert, Matthew Brumley, received a note from a listener named Jeremy with an unfortunate tale. Jeremy and family planned to travel to Europe. The flight was booked and there were still 86 days left on their passports -- far, far longer than the trip would take.

But when they arrived at SeaTac Airport, Jeremy says they were told they could not fly to France, because their passports were set to expire too soon. He writes:

Ted S. Warren / AP

Licenses for scientific research on marijuana could soon be available in Washington state, despite strict federal rules about research on the drug. Under the new state license, labs could grow pot for scientific study. Reporter Melissa Santos wrote about this issue for The News Tribune in Tacoma, where she covers state government. She spoke with KPLU's Ed Ronco.

Ed Ronco / KPLU

KPLU travel expert Matthew Brumley can list expensive destinations, none of which might surprise you.

“New York, London, Paris, any large city in Scandinavia,” he said, “Sydney, Singapore, Shanghai, and Seattle hotels in the summertime.”


But lately there have been some surprises – places Brumley has known for years that have seen spikes in how much it costs to visit. That includes Havana, Cuba.

“Hotels that were $250 a night … are now charging over $550 a night,” he said.

Some Ideas For Saving Money On Your Next Vacation

Aug 18, 2016
btwashburn / Flickr

Traveling on a budget can be a challenge. Airfare often starts in the hundreds of dollars, and hotel bills can quickly get there. So can gasoline costs, if you're driving. Still, KPLU travel expert Matthew Brumley says there are ways to save money while you travel, and in many cases, it can even enhance the experience. Here are some of his suggestions:

Apply Your Miles

Eric Shea / Flickr

Summertime in the Pacific Northwest means many of us are hosting relatives or friends from out of town. But how do you do that here? There are plenty of options, from outdoor adventures, to fine dining, to riding the ferry (seriously, if you don’t live here, it’s a pretty unusual thing to do).

This week in our “Going Places” travel segment – or maybe this week, “Staying Places” – KPLU travel expert Matthew Brumley offers some advice on how to entertain visitors.

Matthew’s Advice

pfly / Flickr

A few weeks back, I mentioned on the air to KPLU travel expert Matthew Brumley that I was hoping to escape to Washington's coast for a few days. Brumley offered up his suggestions on places I should try.

Not too long after, we had a listener appreciation party here at 88.5, and a listener named Jon Roanhaus asked if I'd taken the trip yet. When I said I hadn't, Jon asked for some scratch paper and quickly made a list of five good options.

Trang Nguyen

Hillary Clinton has accepted the Democratic nomination for president. And during her speech Thursday night at the party’s national convention, Clinton talked about the need to unify the country, saying all Americans are stronger together. She also laid out parts of her agenda if she wins in November, including her plans for creating jobs, reforming campaign finance rules and working with former rival Bernie Sanders to create tuition-free college for the middle class.

Susan Walsh / AP Photo

On Wednesday night of the Democratic National Convention, some political heavyweights took the stage to pledge their support for the presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton. There were speeches from former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine and President Barack Obama. Each of them explained how they think Clinton is uniquely qualified to be the next commander in chief.

Washington state delegate Trang Nguyen was in the audience again, listening. Nguyen says she thought Kaine's speech resonated well with Clinton supporters and delegates.

Peter Dejong / AP

Travel involves tipping, from the airport shuttle to the hotel to the restaurants, and sometimes even the bathroom. KPLU travel expert talks about some of the places you might be expected to leave a gratuity.


In some places, you’ll find a bathroom attendant to offer you soap or a towel. Other public restrooms require a fee for entry, or a small fee to get toilet paper on your way in (we’re looking at you, Cuba). It’s a mostly thankless job, and your tip is always appreciated.


Mary Altaffer / AP Photo

Hillary Clinton made history Tuesday by officially being nominated as the first female Democratic presidential candidate at the party’s national convention in Philadelphia. The delegates from each of the states took part in a roll call vote to make it official.

After the vote was taken, many of the supporters for former candidate Bernie Sanders walked out of the convention hall. Washington state delegate Trang Nguyen was among them. Nguyen explains that she is still struggling with the idea of backing Clinton. 

Carolyn Kaster / AP Photo

The Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia is officially underway. And Monday night was filled with speakers calling on voters to support Hillary Clinton, who is the party’s presumptive presidential nominee.

Former candidate Bernie Sanders was among them. And while he took to the stage telling the crowd he was “proud” to stand with Clinton, some Sanders supporters, including Washington state delegate Trang Nguyen aren’t ready to back her just yet. The majority of the 101 delegates from this state support Sanders, following his caucus wins in March. 

Parker Miles Blohm / KPLU

As Washington state delegates gather at the Democratic National Convention this week in Philadelphia, nearly two-thirds of them will be supporting Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. He won the state’s caucuses in March. But Hillary Clinton is expected to be named the Democratic nominee.

That is emblematic of one of the central questions that will play out this week: Can Clinton attract Sanders supporters into her camp? One of the people she’ll hope to convince is Nahtrang Nguyen, a 25-year-old convention delegate from Seattle.

Carolyn Kaster / AP Photo

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump took to the stage Thursday night at the final night of the GOP National Convention. He was rallying the crowd behind him as the party looks toward the general election. We’ve been checking in with Washington state delegate Jack Bell throughout this week as part of our election series “From the Floor.”

Matt Rourke / AP Photo

Former Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz was one of many speakers Wednesday at the party’s national convention. And he was likely the most controversial one after refusing to endorse GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump. The delegates from Washington state were firmly behind Cruz when they initially arrived in Cleveland, Ohio at the start of this week.

But many, like Jack Bell, are now backing Trump in the interest of party unity. Bell says he was discouraged by the fact that Cruz even went on stage in the first place.