Comic's Advice for Beating Holiday Depression

14 hours ago

This may be the season to be jolly, but the truth is that many people dread the holidays.  They’re depressed when family gatherings don’t live up to expectations, disappointed by the gifts they get or the gifts they don’t get.  That’s why comedian Paula Poundstone is stepping up with advice for beating the holiday blues.  Sandy Hausman spoke with her and filed this report.


The world is watching as political leaders meet in France, seeking ways to address climate change.  In Virginia, Appalachian Power, which services just under a million people here, has announced its plan for fuel sources going forward.  For the first time, it includes solar power.  While clean energy advocates applaud the change, they’re concerned it doesn’t go far enough.

As Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring kicks off a study aimed at encouraging more minorities to enter law enforcement in the Commonwealth one of the Southside Virginia cities set to take part is dealing with severe financial problems that could make recruiting even more difficult. 

Martinsville has 51 police officers. Four of those officers are black. That number is even more striking when you consider that African-Americans make up 45% of the city's population.

Associated Press

Virginia’s congressional delegation is wrestling with how the federal government can help states combat the heroin epidemic spreading across the east coast.

More than 25,000 people across the nation die from heroin or other opioids annually. In the commonwealth last year, more people died from opioids than from car wrecks. That’s partly why Virginia Democratic Senator Tim Kaine is trying to make it easier for people to get the drug Naloxone, also called Narcan. 

Writing Their Way Out of Prison

Nov 29, 2015
Sandy Hausman

With more than thirty thousand people in prison, Virginia’s Department of Corrections is the most expensive agency in the state.  To cut costs and assure public safety, officials need ways  to assure that inmates don’t go back to a life of crime when they are released.  At Virginia Commonwealth University, one professor is promoting a novel idea – helping inmates to write their way out.  Sandy Hausman has that story.

As an associate professor of English, Dave Coogan hadn’t given much thought to criminal behavior  until his neighborhood park became a crime scene.

Virginia Led, Then Lagged on HPV Vaccine

Nov 25, 2015
University of Virginia

Virginia was the first state in the nation to require that kids entering the sixth grade be vaccinated against human papilloma -- a virus that causes cervical, oral, throat and other cancers.  Parents can opt out of that requirement, and  many of them do.  Virginia ranks 44th in the nation when it comes to HPV vaccination.   A team of nurses at the University of Virginia is looking at that problem and making recommendations, as Sandy Hausman reports.

Creative Commons

Known for years as the Church of the Confederacy, St Paul’s Episcopal Church is just across the street from Capitol Square in Richmond. But the church has announced steps this week to remove certain images of the Confederate Flag from inside the sanctuary – it’s part of an effort at racial reconciliation.

Richmond Draws Crowds with Garden of Lights

Nov 24, 2015
Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

For most gardeners, this is a quiet time of year, but for one Virginia garden, this is the busy season.  Sandy Hausman reports on why about 60,000 people from around the state will be showing up there over the next few weeks.

On a cold autumn night, you wouldn’t expect crowds to gather in a garden, but executive director Shane Tippett says that’s exactly what you’ll find at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden in Richmond.

The chorus of holiday songs will reach a fever pitch in the next few weeks.  But there are other ways to celebrate the season.  Every year, the Radford University music department rekindles a holiday tradition known as the “Madrigal Dinner.”

University of Mary Washington

As Virginia considers allowing drilling for oil off its coast, scientists at the University of Mary Washington are doing basic research that could prove valuable in the event of a spill.  Sandy Hausman reports on what they hope to learn after two weeks of trolling for oil in the Gulf of Mexico.

For most people, an ocean cruise is vacation. 

For Charlie Sharpless, two weeks on the Gulf of Mexico was work.  


Vehicle Donation

Paula Poundstone in Charlottesville

Paula Returns to the Paramount Theater

Friday December 4th at 8:00pm

Art Gallery Reception

"Bridges" - New oil paintings by Krista Townshend

Friday December 4th at the WVTF and RADIO IQ Studio in Charlottesville

Localore: Finding America

WVTF-RADIO IQ Wins National Competition to Tell Richmond's Story

WVTF-RADIO IQ is one of 15 stations chosen after a national competition to incubate storytelling experiments and expand public media to more Americans. Localore: Finding America was created by AIR, a Boston-based network of independent public media producers, to bring together the most gifted producers and forward-thinking stations in the industry to invent new media models and realize the founding vision of a public broadcasting service for “all of the people.” Principle funding comes from...
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Metropolitan Opera

WVTF Book Club

The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Steadman

Next meeting Tuesday, January 26th at 6:30pm. There is not a December meeting. Happy Holidays!!

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