WMRA News

5/6 - 2:10pm Thursday Update: Virginia State Police have reported that the child was safely recovered this afternoon. 

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5/5 - Early Wednesday evening, State Police issued an AMBER ALERT for a missing Spotsylvania child.

Scholars from all over the world convened at James Madison University in Harrisonburg this week to discuss how we as a species can continue to survive in an increasingly troubled world. And it all boils down to our core beliefs. WMRA's Jessie Knadler headed to JMU to find out more about the science behind values and beliefs and how they dictate the sort of world we live in.

Poor for a Day

Apr 27, 2016

This past Saturday, a few Charlottesville residents had an opportunity to experience the struggles their poorer neighbors go through on a daily basis. WMRA's Jordy Yager met them at the Charlottesville High School to capture the experience of going through Piedmont CASA's Poverty Simulation and has this report.

There are 80 million feral cats in the United States, according to some estimates, and the question of how best to curb over population on the local level has been a real issue in Rockbridge County. Cat advocates are alarmed by the high rate of euthanasia at the County shelter, arguing for a more humane approach. WMRA reporter Jessie Knadler heads to Buena Vista, ground zero of the cat controversy, to find out more about this new approach and whether it actually works. 

NPS Photo: A.William

The Rocky Mount Fire began burning in the Shenandoah National Park on Saturday, and in the past 5 days, it has grown larger each day. On Wednesday, the fire was officially classified as a type 1 disaster and multiple local, state and federal agencies are now coordinating their efforts to fight the blaze.

UPDATE 4/22/16 12:12pm - As of Friday morning, officials are reporting 7,935 acres consumed by the fire.

More than 1 out of every 4 residents in Harrisonburg and Charlottesville live in poverty. Saturday, May 23, a non-profit is offering those who don't live in poverty, a chance to experience the struggles their poorer neighbors go through on a daily basis.

Sefe Emokpae

It was standing room only at a recent city council meeting in Charlottesville where the debate over whether or not to remove the Robert E. Lees statue in Lee Park continued. WMRA's Sefe Emokpae went to the meeting and spoke to leaders on both sides of the controversial issue. 

Please bear with us as we replace the WEMC transmitter. 

WEMC 91.7 FM is off the air at the moment as our engineers are installing a new transmitter and will hopefully be broadcasting again soon. If all goes well, we will be back on the airwaves before the day is over.

In the meantime, please listen online to our stream.

WEMC Stream

On this episode of Second Look, WMRA's Jessie Knadler examines the effect of Virginia's topsy-turvy spring weather on local vineyards, and whether climate change might be a factor.... Jordy Yager has a follow-up to our Refugees in Virginia series, with a look at one Burmese family literally making a new home for themselves in Charlottesville, with some help from Habitat for Humanity....  plus Christopher Clymer Kurtz's report on why Saturday, April 23 is going to be mediation pioneer Larry Hoover’s Day in Harrisonburg.... We've also got the week's statewide news... and Our Island Universe!

Jordy Yager

For the hundreds of refugees who resettle in Virginia, home is a place they’ve left behind. For an update on our series on refugees, WMRA’s Jordy Yager has this story about what it takes to build a new home, here in America.

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.

Jessie Knadler

Is climate change affecting Virginia's vineyards, or is it just crazy Spring weather? The balmy February and March encouraged plants to bud early, only to be damaged or killed by the bitterly cold temperatures of last week. WMRA’s Jessie Knadler talks to two winemakers in Rockbridge County about techniques and strategies they employ to keep up with shifting weather patterns.

On this episode of Second Look, WMRA's Christopher Clymer Kurtz explores interfaith relationships, both at the level of church, mosque and synagogue, and within one interfaith family.... We look at Virginia's latest jobs numbers (they're good).... and we've also got the latest installments of The Spark and Our Island Universe.

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.

On this edition of Second Look, WMRA's Emily Richardson-Lorente takes us on a comprehensive tour of Sweet Briar College one year after it almost closed.... WMRA's Dan Easley talks with JMU professor Paul Bogard about his latest efforts to raise awareness of the effects of light pollution.... and we have reports from Virginia Public Radio on a guest worker victory in a Charlottesville court, a Virginia Tech survey of health care attitudes, and the prospects for a raise in Virginia's minimum wage.  And, on Our Island Universe.... what's "eating" Pluto?

The John C. Wells Planetarium at JMU is holding a week-long series of events designed to raise awareness of light pollution and of the steps we can take to end it.  WMRA's Dan Easley spoke with one of the event's founders, Dr. Paul Bogard, who has also written a book on the subject.

Emily Richardson-Lorente

This month marks the one year anniversary of Sweet Briar College’s near-shut down.  In the first part of this report, we heard from students and faculty who are just happy to be back at work on the college’s Amherst campus. Today, we return to take a closer look at how Sweet Briar is adapting to ensure its single-sex survival in a coed kind of world. WMRA's Emily Richardson-Lorente has the story.

Emily Richardson-Lorente

One year ago, Sweet Briar College shocked its students, faculty and alumnae by announcing that the 114 year old school would be closing — and quick — due to financial difficulties. But after a massive social media campaign and a successful lawsuit, the college is still kicking one year later. WMRA's Emily Richardson-Lorente visited the campus in Amherst.

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