Christopher Clymer Kurtz

Freelance Reporter

Along with teaching seventh grade English now for more than a decade, Christopher Clymer Kurtz writes music, plays guitar, and sings for his alternative pop/rock band, commutes by bicycle whenever he can, helps his young kids clean up their endless play area disasters, and writes occasional feature stories for WMRA.

A graduate of Eastern Mennonite University’s social work and James Madison University’s English MA programs, Christopher has dabbled in radio, creative writing, photography, and newspaper journalism.

He lives near Linville, Virginia.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

The global craze over the new augmented reality game Pokémon GO, which was released in the U.S. early this month, has also caught on in the Valley. On a recent hot afternoon, players were out and about in Harrisonburg, smartphones in hand, willingly sharing their personal information in exchange for fun. WMRA's Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Over the years the push for biking and walking paths connecting neighborhoods and schools in Harrisonburg has grown; they’ve come to be expected in the city’s planning. But progress has a lot of moving parts including cost, engineering concerns, and reluctant landowners, as WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Courtesy Doah Fest 2015

We are well into music festival season this summer, but there’s one you may not have heard about. It’s Doah Fest, near Luray. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

Maybe you’ve seen one around--it wouldn’t be surprising. It’s the season in Virginia for nuisance bear activity, as WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

Virginia’s wind resources are largely untapped, but a two-day symposium next week at James Madison University aims to stimulate dialogue about and facilitate development of this energy source. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

For refugees trying to establish themselves in a strange land, just like for the rest of us, reliable transportation can be the key to landing a job, or simply being independent. One Harrisonburg bicycling enthusiast is not only teaching refugees how to ride bikes; she is also providing them with their own bicycles. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz attended the most recent class and has this report.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

In January the government’s new definition of “chronically homeless” took effect. The agency says this new definition, which has been years in the making, will aid in eliminating chronic homelessness by 2017, two years after an earlier deadline for that same goal. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports that when it comes to defining chronic homelessness, however, little seems definite.

This year in Harrisonburg, April 23 will have a new name: Larry Hoover Day. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

If you like food, or beer, or wine, or live music, arts and crafts vendors, or supporting a local charity just by having a fun time in a beautiful place on a warm, sunny day… then Saturday, April 16th is going to be right down your alley. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz has the story.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

In a world of polarized religion and politics, forming authentic relationships across faith boundaries can be a challenge. Yesterday we heard about local religious groups supporting each other at an institutional level; today, WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz looks at one Harrisonburg family’s personal embrace of two faith traditions.

For millennia, people have used religion to divide, as well as unite. Current national rhetoric and hateful discourse stemming from fears of terrorism has often equated Islam, the religion of a quarter of the world’s population, with a slippery enemy. But this negativity is far from universal. In this first of a two-part series about local interfaith relationships, WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports that over the years many people and churches in Harrisonburg have reached out to show support for minority religious communities.

Emily Richardson-Lorente

Virginia gave Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump victories in the state's primary Tuesday.  (Results here.)  Voters expressed excitement, fear, and civic duty -- and some brought the kids along -- for Virginia's open primary election, part of Super Tuesday voting.  WMRA's Christopher Clymer Kurtz, Jessie Knadler, and Emily Richardson-Lorente talked with polling officials and voters to get a sense of turnout, and of what's on voters' minds this election season.

The Virginia Department of Health has confirmed three cases of Zika virus disease in the state. Just over a month ago McGaheysville’s Heather Baker learned she was Virginia’s first. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz called Heather last week, for an update.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

In just a few weeks, Zika has gone from being a little known virus to a rather infamous one. The disease, new to the Western Hemisphere last year, is being closely watched internationally, and the World Health Organization has declared its spread a global public health emergency. Just last week, the Centers for Disease Control confirmed the first case of the Zika virus disease here in Virginia, in McGaheysville. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

When you think of “war,” which war comes to your mind? How far removed are you from that war? How has war impacted your work? These are the questions asked of 18 people in a project currently on display at Eastern Mennonite University.  WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Courtesy Chris Wilmore

A new documentary called “Guns to Gloves” has been making the rounds on social media, and getting a lot of buzz in the Shenandoah Valley.  It was posted by the New York Times earlier this month.  In that video, we meet a man in Harrisonburg who is engaging in a unique, but perhaps time-honored – method of dispute resolution, staging fistfights in his backyard. And as WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports, the organizers of these fights have had to get used to LOTS of attention.

Courtesy Jennifer Davis Sensenig

The recent spate of anti-Muslim sentiments expressed by public figures such as Liberty University’s president and presidential contenders has prompted many Christian leaders, including some in the Harrisonburg area, to vocalize their own messages--of solidarity with Muslims. WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Photo courtesy of Rylie Power

For some, a bicycle means an affordable and environmentally friendly way to commute. For others, it’s the excitement of speedy descents down rugged mountain trails. But for one JMU professor, being able to ride a bicycle meant he could be an athlete -- and now, for one Harrisonburg teen, it’s a promise of independence.  WMRA's Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

Courtesy Artisans Center of Virginia

Harrisonburg and Rockingham County artisans literally are being put on the map with a new guided network for tourists, and curious locals. It’s called the Artisan Trail, and WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz has the story.

Christopher Clymer Kurtz

Today marks the beginning of a meeting in Paris of world governments to try to strike a global agreement on climate. While heightened security in Paris has led to the cancellation of the Global Climate March planned there, global climate movement organization 350.org says that throughout the world other Global Climate Marches are taking place, including in Harrisonburg.  WMRA's Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

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