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Marc Zyla

Director of Community Engagement

Marc Zyla joined WVIK, Quad Cities NPR in May 2022 as the Director of Community Engagement. Prior to that Zyla had been the Director of Education and Community Engagement with the Quad City Symphony Orchestra, where he continues to perform as Principal Horn. Zyla believes that there is something for everyone in public radio and brings passion and creativity to his position as Director of Community Engagement.

During the COVID-19 pandemic Zyla launched, “Because…”, a podcast based on a children’s book by Mo Willems in which he serves as the host and producer.

Marc earned a bachelor’s degree in Musical Arts from West Virginia University, a master’s degree in Horn Performance from Carnegie Mellon University, and has completed doctoral course work in Horn Performance and Literature at the University of Illinois.

Aside from his work at WVIK, Zyla is a lover of the outdoors, and you’ll frequently see him kayaking the rivers of the Quad Cities or rafting the whitewater of southern West Virginia. Zyla resides in Rock Island with his lovely wife, Rachel, and their pack of rescue animals.

  • Scott Beck and Bryan Woods, co-owners of The Last Picture House a new movie theater opening in downtown Davenport, stop by to chat about the grand opening and the inspiration behind opening this exciting new venue!
  • On this episode of What's Happenin' QC, Marc Zyla sits down with Kevin Maynard and Alex Salaverria from Quad City Arts to discuss all things Festival of Trees!
  • Community
    In this episode of the What's Happening QC podcast, host Marc Zyla sits down with Dan Bush from Bummer City Inc, the company behind several businesses in the Quad Cities. They dive into the annual Christmas pop-up event happening at Analog Pizza and Arcade in Moline. With over 40,000 lights, nearly 2,000 feet of tinsel, and an array of inflatable decorations, this event has become a staple in the community during the holiday season. Dan shares how the event started as a way to bring people together safely after the COVID pandemic and how it has grown in popularity each year.
  • This is a podcast episode of "What's Happening in QC" where the host Marc Zyla interviews Ryan Willie, the Executive Director of the Quad City Botanical Center. They discuss the success the Botanical Center saw over the summer with record attendance numbers post-COVID. Ryan details the various programs and activities offered at the Center from school programs, private events, serene garden areas, different plant collections and a children's garden.They then focus on the Center's biggest annual fundraiser - Winter Nights Winter Lights light display. Ryan provides details on the growth of this event over 8 years which now attracts over 16000 people and generates crucial funding. Special events planned this year include a Lights and Flights pairing with a local brewery and pizza.Marc highlights the Conductors Garden light display set to music from the Quad City Symphony Orchestra. Ryan praises the cultural partnerships in the Quad Cities. They discuss the importance of the Quad City Cultural Trust in supporting local cultural institutions.Ryan talks about what he enjoys outside of work in the Quad Cities from family activities to various parks, trails and amenities. He expresses how the Quad Cities is a great place to raise a family and have a vibrant cultural life due to all the resources and support available.
  • Community
    In this episode of "What's Happenin' QC," host Marc Zyla sits down with Brian Baxter from the Quad City Symphony Orchestra to discuss the exciting events on the horizon. Brian kicks things off by talking about the much-anticipated Masterworks II performance featuring Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2. He eagerly highlights that this will be the Quad Cities debut for pianist Michelle Cann, adding an extra air of anticipation to the event. Brian also dives into the upcoming "QCSO at the Movies" performance of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, which is set to take place during the bustling Festival of Trees weekend. The conversation then shifts to the recent performance of Nightmare Before Christmas, with Marc commenting on the unique challenges of a musical with constant music. Brian wholeheartedly agrees, describing the show as a whirlwind of melodies with little time to rest. He goes on to share the positive reception of pre-show activities like trick or treating, which added an extra layer of fun to the evening. Brian goes on to provide details about the Symphony Orchestra's annual fundraising gala called the Soiree. He highlights the extensive planning involved and stresses the importance of raising funds for the orchestra's education programs. The recent theme of "Shaken, Not Stirred," inspired by James Bond, is also discussed, including the exciting display of special vehicles and items from the Ian Fleming Foundation. Before wrapping up, Brian takes the opportunity to promote upcoming QCSO performances such as Holiday Brass. He also encourages listeners to explore local events to combat the winter blues.
  • Community
    In this episode of "What's Happening in QC," host Marc Zyla is joined by special guest Adam Peters from Davenport to discuss the exciting Halloween events taking place in the Quad Cities area. Adam kicks things off by sharing details about the much-anticipated Raccoon Motel Bingo event happening on October 30th, featuring the one and only West End Wang as the guest caller. Not only will participants have a great time playing bingo, but the proceeds will go towards supporting the Clock Inc. organization.As the conversation continues, Adam provides an update on the latest happenings at Clock Inc. He mentions a recent National Coming Out Day ceremony and gives us a sneak peek into the upcoming Halloween trivia night.Switching gears, Adam opens up about his personal involvement in the running community. He recounts his journey of taking up running later in life and shares his love for the supportive running community in the Quad Cities. To add to the excitement, Adam also promotes an upcoming zombie run event taking place in the charming Village of East Davenport on October 28th.Further delving into the Halloween spirit, Adam highlights a few more thrilling events, including a double feature of the beloved films E.T. and Beetlejuice at the Capitol Theater. He also mentions a special screening of the cult classic Rocky Horror Picture Show, sure to delight fans of the macabre.Towards the end of the episode, Marc dives into a personal topic and asks Adam about his decision to give up alcohol, while still maintaining an active social life in the Quad Cities. Adam describes the positive changes he has experienced since becoming sober in January 2022 and offers valuable tips for others, such as attending events at bars that serve non-alcoholic drinks.
  • In this episode, Marc invites guests Patrick Downing and Lacey Skorepa to shed light on the upcoming events at the Figge Art Museum in Davenport. Patrick kicks off the discussion by providing an exciting overview of the museum's inaugural "Five Nights of Fright", a Halloween extravaganza happening from October 25th to 29th. Each night promises a unique theme and a plethora of spooky attractions.Lacey, who contributed to the planning of these events, joins in to explain how these activities were designed to engage the community in fresh and innovative ways. She dives into the thrilling details of each night's offerings, which include a Halloween trivia night, a reserved ticket screening of the horror classic "The Exorcist", a delectable "Dark Delights" dinner paired with a screening of "Little Shop of Horrors", and the highly anticipated "Mysteria" on Saturday, featuring live music, performers, readers, and engaging activities. To top it off, Sunday's "Tricks and Treats" family event is free for everyone to enjoy.Marc takes a moment to discuss the Figge Art Museum's significance as both an art and education center and a valuable community resource. Patrick and Lacey then delve into their personal and professional connections with the museum. Patrick fondly recalls family visits and even a first date at the Figge, while Lacey draws comparisons to other renowned art museums she has experienced. Their shared sentiment highlights the Figge's commitment to accessibility and creating a warm and welcoming environment.As the episode draws to a close, Marc inquires about other fall activities in the Quad Cities. Patrick and Lacey eagerly mention apple picking, pumpkin patches, local restaurants, and the excitement surrounding the upcoming holidays. Marc expresses his gratitude to his guests for their valuable insights and expresses his hopes of having them back on the show soon. Tune in to this captivating episode of "What's Happening QC" to learn more about the thrilling Halloween events and all the exciting happenings in the Quad Cities this fall.
  • In this episode of "What's Happening QC," host Marc Zyla sits down with Leo Kaalberg, the mastermind behind the popular Facebook page "Out to Eat with Leo." Leo delves into the inception of his page, which emerged in 2020 amidst the chaos of the pandemic. Aimed at supporting struggling local restaurants, Leo's posts quickly gained traction thanks to his detailed and captivating meal reviews. Not long after, the cities of East Moline and Silvis began sharing his content, propelling his page to new heights. Today, "Out to Eat with Leo" extends beyond food reviews, tackling important topics such as mental health, veterans issues, and community involvement.Leo has a special focus on encouraging veterans to break free from isolation and reconnect with their communities. Drawing from his own experiences with alcohol and drug addiction after serving in the military and undergoing numerous surgeries, Leo aims to inspire other veterans by demonstrating that socializing and having fun don't necessitate substance abuse.Throughout the interview, Leo shares amusing anecdotes, such as being recognized in grocery stores and his futile attempts at dining out incognito. He also sheds light on hidden culinary gems he recommends trying including Taste of Ethiopia and Sabor Catracho. Leo also highlights some of his personal favorite dining spots, including Floyd's Burgers, Stevie's Eats BBQ, and the up-and-coming Mexican food truck, Mi Oaxaca.
  • In this episode of "What's Happening QC," host Marc Zyla welcomes guest Adam Wesconsin, founder of the collective Void Church. Adam shares the motivation behind starting Void Church, which aims to bridge the gap in the local music scene by showcasing goth, shoegaze, and darkwave bands. Listeners get an exclusive look at three upcoming shows scheduled for October 8th, 13th, and 31st, featuring incredible acts like ActiVity, Adam's own band Giallow's, Mountain Swallower, and more.Marc and Adam dive deeper into the genre of shoegaze, discussing its origins and current trends. Adam expertly defines shoegaze and highlights both pioneering and contemporary bands that epitomize the genre. The conversation also delves into the significance of tempo and repetition in music, shedding light on their role in creating unique sonic landscapes.The discussion takes an intriguing turn as Adam sheds light on the misconceptions surrounding metal and goth music imagery. He emphasizes the increasing popularity of cross-pollination between different genres and shares examples of innovative shoegaze bands that are pushing the boundaries and exploring new directions.Grateful for Adam's insights and a sneak peek into the upcoming Void Church shows, Marc expresses his excitement to explore the recommended bands. He eagerly looks forward to having Adam back on the podcast in the near future to continue exploring the diverse world of music.
  • Our guests this week are Sean Moeller and Maggie Pappas (WHQC's favorite raccoons) from the Raccoon Motel in Davenport, Iowa. They stop by to chat about their new clubs, the energy building in Motor Row, and of course a few random tangents....