Breakin’ the Norm

Host Les Norman brings listeners the best in sports stories ranging from the biggest names in sports to the hometown ‘heroes’ you’ve never heard of.  He  also interviews some of the most fascinating people in the entertainment world, uncovering  rare, behind the scenes conversations. Breakin’ the Norm takes an introspective look into sports and life.

Character Actor/Second City Alum JOHN KAPELOS

We all remember them. John Hughes classic movies like “The Breakfast Club”, “Weird Science”, & “Sixteen Candles” were anthems to high school kids everywhere, and John Kapelos played memorable characters in each one. From ‘Carl the Janitor’ to ‘Dino’ to ‘Rudy the Oily Bohunk’, his career started with instant classics, and his broad range as a character actor has him involved in countless TV and movie projects to date. Go behind the scenes with the former Second City Alum, actor, writer and record company mgr John Kapelos!

Oscar Nominee, Golden Globe Winner (‘Platoon’), Prime Time Emmy Winner (‘Hatfields & McCoys’) Tom Berenger

Since 1977’s “Looking for Mr. Goodbar”, Tom Berenger has been one of the most sought after actors on both the small and big screen. His portrayal of Sgt. Barnes in the hit movie “Platoon” won him the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor, along with many other memorable movies such as “Major League” (veteran catcher Jake Taylor), “Sniper” (Thomas Beckett), “Someone to Watch Over Me” (Det. Mike Keegan) and many, many more!
A Chicago native born to working class parents, Berenger would eventually graduate from MU, only to enter into acting on a bet from a roommate. After he landed the role of ‘Nick’ in the hit play “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”, the rest is history, except for a few interesting jobs around the KC Metro area!
Down to earth and humble, listen in to this informative interview from one of Hollywood’s greatest actors!

Actor, Comedian, Musician, Martial Arts Expert & Radio Host Hal Sparks

Growing up in Chicago, Hal Sparks dreamed of becoming an actor; however, his father didn’t see that as a viable career option. In order to enter the New Trier HS program, he purposely failed 2 classes to force the elective into place. Once in, he found his passion for entertaining. His teacher would call him something else..a “prodigy”.
By the age of 17, Sparks was crowned “Funniest Kid in Chicago”, and armed with a strong work ethic and desire to succeed, he headed out to LA, where he’d give new meaning to the phrase ‘paying your dues’. He kept his mind on outworking everyone throughout TV auditions and stand-up routines in comedy clubs, and that perseverance would pay off. He was selected to host the highly rated “Talk Soup” cable TV show, where he’d offer up his superior wit and sarcasm, and would eventually star in hits such as “Dude, Where’s My Car?” and an extended run on Disney’s top rated “Lab Rats”.
Now you’ll find Hal fronting his own amazing band or touring the world doing stand up specials. Despite his rigorous schedule, he doesn’t drink, smoke, or eat anything that would harm his body. Talk about dedication? Listen in to what makes this widely known and successful entertainer click…..

Former Twisted Sister Front Man, Iconic Radio Host, Writer/Producer & Top-Voted Metal Vocalist Dee Snider

One of the most iconic metal voices of all time, former Twisted Sister frontman DEE SNIDER talks about his upcoming album release “For The Love of Metal”, how he survived the ‘One-Hit Wonder’ moniker by reinventing himself, his devotion to his bride of 37 years, and his 21 yr. run as syndicated satellite radio host of “House of Hair”.

Canadian Long Drive Champion, Empowering Speaker and Brand Ambassador Lisa “Longball” Vlooswyk

Lisa “Longball” Vlooswyk does something that you can’t do-consistently drive a golf ball 350 yards…and straight! She’s won several Canadian Titles and consistently competes in the World LongDrive events. She also empowers women and audiences alike as an empowering and motivational keynote speaker, featuring her highly sought-after presentation titled “Drive Determines Distance”, among many others. With a live-out-loud personality that captivates audiences everywhere, Lisa Longball is not only changing the game from the tee box, but also from the heart and mind of the golfer!!
In this fun and uplifting interview, I ask Lisa Longball her thoughts on Serena Williams US Open outburst, inequality in women’s professional sports, and the responsibility of professional athletes to use their platforms wisely. You may be surprised what you hear!! Listen in as I talk to one of my all-time favorite guests!!

Meet ‘The Crew’ from Lee’s Summit’s very own BPM Dance Complex!!

In the highly competitive world of dance academies, a stigma surrounds the industry. Be the best and pay lots and lots of money. Only the strongest and best survive. But does it really HAVE to be that way? My guests on this fun and lively show don’t think so, and they’re proving it!!
I’ll sit down in studio with ‘The Crew’ of BPM Dance Complex: Co-Owner Krystyn Roberts; Studio Director, Professional Dancer/Instructor and Co-Owner Blake Piatczyc; and Pro Dancers/Instructors Crysti Miller, Hannah Williams & Tia Qureshi. We’ll talk passion, why they are changing the landscape of the dance academy, BPM’s state-of-the-art facility, and much more! If you’re searching for a dance home for ages 2 and up, as well as one that’s safe and expressive, then look no further than BPM!!

St. Joe Mustangs Owner, ‘The Big Biscuit’ Founder & Baseball Fantatic Dan Gerson

Continuing on the theme of Chicago natives, Dan Gerson grew up loving the game of baseball. He was a Sox fan but grew to enjoy baseball in Chicago regardless. He found his way to KC after a successful run at Chicago’s Board of Trade, bringing his strong business sense and love of baseball with him.
Since 1934, baseball has been played in St. Joseph, MO at historic Phil Welch stadium, where the likes of Mickey Mantle, Stan Musial and many others have roamed the diamond. In recent years, the crowds began to diminish as the stadium aged. Upgrades were a necessity, and a partnership between the St. Joe community and Dan Gerson was born!
A financial commitment to upgrade the stadium brought in fans by the thousands, and at recent Mustang games fans may number upwards of 5,000 in it’s 4,000+ capacity! Join me as I talk to the man who partnered with a community to bring some of the best amateur, college-level baseball in the Midwest!

Royals Farm Report Guru, Baseball Insider, Teacher & Coach Alex Duvall

As a tall, lanky 8 yr. old, Alex Duvall had a bright future ahead in baseball, even before people should talk about futures in baseball. His dad coached him, and he was good at his craft. As a pitcher, he overpowered young hitters, a theme that would continue throughout youth baseball, high school, and into college.
Somewhere along the way, a nasty elbow injury attempted to sideline him, but Duvall fought hard like he always has. Armed with determination and a work ethic taught to him by his once principal mother and highly successful businessman father, he worked through the injury and pitched again. He would eventually hang up the spikes, but a bulldozer armed with a flame thrower couldn’t take him out of the game he loves.
Now a teacher and coach, Alex Duvall is a professional baseball insider and contributor to “Royals Farm Report”, a site that is everything Royals with a concentration on the future Kauffman stadium elite. Always an excellent student in the classroom, Big Al uses his experiences on the diamond, his advanced intellect in analytics and a passionate love for the game to write for the team he loves….and he’s a highly talented writer as well! If you’re a Royals fan, a baseball junkie, a prospect watcher or a combination of all 3, listen in to my conversation with Alex as he’s shows us all a thing or two about the greatest game ever invented-especially while wearing Royal Blue!!

Former LSN Bronco, St. Louis Cardinals farmhand Andrew Warner (and dad JD!)

He’s always been pretty good at this game; so good, in fact, that he could play anywhere on the field at a moment’s notice. Along with the amazing talent, he had a baseball IQ at such a young age that left me wondering-is he gonna play in the big leagues or manage? One thing at a time, coach…
If you ask him the most important things to him, he may tell you that he’s a family guy. He has amazing parents and he just got married. He may talk about his former coaches and teammates, which is no surprise because he’s humble and understands the importance of God’s gift of talent. You may even hear a hint of old school musicality when he shares his love of Pearl Jam and other classic rock bands. But make no mistake, this dude loves the game of baseball, and he’s good at it, really good. But he almost didn’t get there…
In the 2018 amateur draft, MLB organizations don’t draft as long as they used to. MLB Hall of Famer Mike Piazza was drafted in the 62nd rd. years ago by the LA Dodgers, only as a favor to his godfather, former Dodger mgr. Tommy Lasorda. This year, as the draft went along, Warner’s name wasn’t called….until the last round (40th) by the St. Louis Cardinals, a virtual afterthought after putting up monster numbers his last 2 years at Columbia College where he’d earned 1st Team All-American honors. At least he had his foot in the door, right? On a Wednesday, he got drafted. 2 days later, he got married. 1 day later, he got on a plane to begin a career he’d only dreamed of…
A draft round is only a number. This 40th rounder started his career by earning the FSL’s coveted MVP award, earned a promotion to Johnson City, TN and catapulted his status as late pick up to top prospect in a matter of weeks. Hear from the young man who experienced a lifetime over a 4-day span, and how the coaching thing may just have to be put on hold for a few years…

David Vobora

Former “Mr. Irrelevant” David Vobora, the last pick in the ’08 NFL draft, worked his way into the Rams starting lineup, only to find himself addicted to painkillers after out of a job after blowing out his shoulder. One year into retirement, he began a career in personal training, but something was missing. Unsure of his “Why” in life, Vobora met US Army Staff Sgt. Travis Mills, one of only five living quad amputees. That meeting changed both of their lives forever, and created the passion behind the ‘Adaptive Training Foundation’, now empowering adaptive athletes/vets find their own why!

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Les and Kristin brought a very real, heartfelt, life changing and Christ-centered message.  People are still referencing the impact of their ministry here at our church.  I know that God is using them to confront issues in our culture today and bring true transformation.

Brian Ross
Head Pastor, Faith Chapel-Spring Valley, CA

We are celebrating our 33rd year in business here at Heartland Tan….Our 2016 EXPO featured Les Norman, former Kansas City Royal…. Les brought a humorous, thoughtful, and timely message for our customers… a fresh personal perspective from Les was well received-we had numerous compliments!  I really appreciated his related stories in context…..We plan to work again with Les in the future!

Brad Nelson
Co-Owner, Heartland Tanning

I really appreciate this follow up very much. It is difficult to explain how timely and how powerful the marriage conference was.  Your transparency and authority in the Word of God was JUST what I needed.  I appreciate this encouragement and I will definitely keep in touch!

Brandon H.
Conference Attendee

Our men’s TGIW Bible study group was deeply impacted by the raw and real words of Les & Kristin Norman as they shared on “Living Beyond The Masks.” It was especially meaningful to hear both of them communicate the pain, as well as the forgiveness, which they experienced…

Rod Handley
President & Founder, Character That Counts

Thank you for blessing the men of Mission Hills with your message this evening.  I believe hearts were changed and wives and children will reap the blessings of husbands and fathers who came home different men tonight because of the gospel they received tonight…

Gary G.
Men’s BBQ Attendee

“I’ve known Les almost 20 years since our playing days in Cleveland. Les is a man of many gifts… baseball player, teacher, speaker, communicator, motivator, friend, husband, and dad.
A man of character God has used to impact so many.”

Kevin Seitzer
11 yr. MLB Veteran, Atlanta Braves Hitting Coach

Each time I have shared a speaking engagement with Les whether in person or on the radio I have come away with such a great feeling. Les is very professional, adapts to his audience, shares a great passion for his listeners and challenges them to action. Les understands the importance of his faith, family and the influence he has as a former major league player. He has set the priorities for his life and is doing a great job communicating his message to all of us.

Bill Severns
Author "Keepers of the Sandlot"

Today was such a wonderful event – the energy in the room was palpable.  I have received numerous emails this morning and afternoon complimenting CASA on the breakfast – and everyone mentions how touched they were by your story and your support for our organization.  I can’t thank you enough for your heartfelt speech and wonderful endorsement – it made a huge difference today!  Thank you so much for all your help and inspiration – I am so glad that CASA brought you into our circle! It has been a true gift.

Martha Gershun
Executive Director, Jackson County CASA

Les is one of the most effective communicators that I know.  He has the ability to take a difficult or complex subject and break it down into practical information that you can not only understand, but, put into practice right away. Les speaks with conviction, compassion and knowledge.  He balances his subtle humor with a unique sincerity and as a result, his entire audience will come away from their time with Les extremely motivated and personally challenged.

Mike Lusardi
former KC Chiefs & KC Royals Chaplain