WMRA News

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.

Jordy Yager

Last month, a Charlottesville organization to mentor young men of color beat out more than one hundred other groups across the country to get the 100 Black Men of America’s chapter of the year award for mentoring.  WMRA’s Jordy Yager talked with some of the young men who have excelled in the program, and their mentors.

A special concert in Charlottesville is paying homage to late, great recording artist Prince, while also raising funds for a special cause. WMRA's Sefe Emokpae explains.

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.

Jessie Knadler

Nearly 30% of Virginia teenagers are either obese or overweight, and many of those calories come from sugary beverages. A statewide campaign is underway to encourage Virginia teens to forego the sodas and energy drinks for water. WMRA's Jessie Knadler heads to the high school in Buena Vista to find out if the campaign is effective and whether teens would ever consider ditching soda pop and energy drinks for a healthier alternative.

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.

Jessie Knadler

Activists who helped bring an end to the Keystone XL pipeline from crossing Nebraska have come to Virginia to help local landowners do the same with Dominion’s Atlantic Coast pipeline. The alliance is staging six protests across Virginia and West Virginia, planting sacred corn along the route of the proposed pipeline. WMRA's Jessie Knadler attended one event in Stuarts Draft to learn more about these “seeds of resistance.”

Jessie Knadler

With the Natural Bridge in Rockbridge County slated to become a state park this year, local artist Mark Cline has been asked to move his plastic foam replica of England’s famous Stonehenge, dubbed Foamhenge, because it sits on property that will become part of the new park. Jessie Knadler talks to the artist about his quirky foam attraction, what it means to Rockbridge County and where he plans to move it.

Racial Segregation Survives Death

Jun 3, 2016
Faith E. Pinho

The legacy of segregated cemeteries is seemingly everywhere in Virginia, including in Lexington.  Every year, hundreds of tourists flock to Stonewall Jackson Memorial Cemetery to pay respects to the old Confederate general. Few visitors are aware of the graveyard on the other side of town – or its storied legacy. WMRA’s Faith Pinho has this report.

Sefe Emokpae

A historic, but neglected, cemetery in Charlottesville is forgotten no more. As WMRA’s Sefe Emokpae reports, an effort to restore the Daughters of Zion Cemetery is finally gaining momentum.

A group of mental health service providers in the Staunton area have pooled their resources to push for the creation of a new facility aimed at treating people in crisis.  In our final report in a series on mental health care in Virginia, WMRA’s Jordy Yager has this report.

Jordy Yager

A new approach to handling mentally ill criminals employs a special court docket to keep them out of prison and get them into treatment.  As part of our investigation into the state of mental health care in Virginia, Jordy Yager has this report.

Courtesy Western State Hospital

Mental health services in Virginia progressed leaps and bounds over the last 40 years. But many experts argue that more needs to be done.  May is Mental Health Awareness Month, so WMRA’s Jordy Yager caught up with some veterans of the system to get a sense for how we’re doing, in this first of a series of reports on the state of mental health care in Virginia.

A Rivanna River Tour of Charlottesville

May 20, 2016
Brit Moorer

If you’ve had trouble finding an outfitter to take a trip on the Rivanna River near Charlottesville, one local couple has launched a business to fill that gap, and help explorers take advantage of the physical, and aesthetic, features the river offers. WMRA’s Brit Moorer reports.

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.

In our region, the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline has aroused controversy.  So has another proposed natural gas line through Southwestern Virginia.  A new study takes a look at local costs of the pipeline that would stretch from West Virginia to a compressor station in southern Virginia. WMRA’s Jordy Yager has this report.

About 30 people came to hear local NAACP leader Dr. Rick Turner speak in Charlottesville on Sunday evening about racial discrimination. WMRA’s Jordy Yager has this report.

Jessie Knadler

Before urban sprawl and big box stores, folks in rural communities did their shopping at the local general store. Many of these stores have disappeared from the rural landscape, but one in the town of Middlebrook in Augusta County is not only surviving, it’s thriving.  WMRA’s Jessie Knadler paid a visit and has this report.

Devils Backbone, the eight year old craft brewery headquartered in Nelson County, was recently bought for an undisclosed sum by global beer giant Anheuser-Busch InBev. Now, some Virginia fans of the scruffy indie brand are questioning whether the label has sold out. Jessie Knadler sat down with CEO Steve Crandall to find out what’s in store for the Virginia brewery.

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