This is a startling memoir of a successful journalist’s journey from the deserted and dusty mining towns of the American Southwest, to an antique filled apartment on Park Avenue. Jeanette Walls narrates her nomadic and adventurous childhood with her dreaming, ‘brilliant’ but alcoholic parents. At the age of seventeen she escapes on a Greyhound bus to New York with her older sister; her younger siblings follow later. After pursuing the education and civilisation her parents sought to escape, Jeanette eventually succeeds in her quest for the ‘mundane, middle class existence’ she had always craved.

The club selects its books democratically at the end of every year, with members nominating titles during the fall and voting in December so that a list for the entire following year can be announced in January.  We are proud of the eclectic nature and high quality of authors we read—best sellers and classics, novels as well as biographies, histories, and other non-fiction.  Each meeting is facilitated by a leader from the literary/academic community or by one of our members.  

Roanoke Symphony
11:57 am
Thu March 28, 2013

Beethoven's Choral Fantasy

Ludwig van Beethoven
Credit en.wikipedia.org

Featured in the movie "The King's Speech," Beethoven's fiery, dance-inspired seventh symphony opens this all Beethoven program. Maestro Wiley is in the spotlight and at the piano performing the Choral Fantasy, the precursor to Beethoven's great Ode to Joy. The full chorus also joins us for the "Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage." A fantastic all-Beethoven celebration!

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NPR’s Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me! was on the big screen in our listening area in May including theaters in Danville, Lynchburg and Richmond. 

Congratulations go out to the winners of our Wait Wait cinecast contest. Each has won a pair of tickets to see one of the cinecasts in our listening area:

Danville's Stadium Cinemas on May 2 - Warren Sterba of Danville, Lorre Fleming of Danville, John Collins of Chatham, Karen Garnett of Danville, Deb Henderson of Danville.

Lynchburg's Movies 10 on May 2 - Jim & Roseanne Robertson of Newport, Sandi Shelton of Forest, Mary McCann of Forest, Anna Leigh of Madison Heights, Jennifer Cumby of Lowesville.

Robot Reinformcement
10:35 am
Thu March 28, 2013

Cyber Teachers

Credit Virginia State University

Most educators agree that kids learn best when teachers tailor their approach, working one-on-one with students, but it’s too expensive for every child to have his or her own teacher. 

Now, however, a Virginia psychologist is hoping to create a computer that can teach individualized lessons, adjusting speed and content based on a student’s face.  

Could we create talking, thinking robots to work in our classrooms – providing individualized instruction?  Could a computer be taught to tell when a student is losing focus or getting confused?

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Commentaries & Essays
9:50 am
Thu March 28, 2013

Celebrity Sighting

Carey Keefe

It's hard to imagine that posing for a photograph could change a life -- uniting a Virginia man with a woman living 7,000 miles away, but that's exactly what happened when Staunton writer Carey Keefe went on vacation with her husband. 

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On Friday, April 5 from 5-7 PM, join NPRWVTF and Radio IQ, and New City Arts for “Color Comforts“– modern quilts by 

Bob Mondello, who jokes that he was a jinx at the beginning of his critical career, "hired to write for every small paper in Washington, D.C., just as it was about to fold," saw that jink broken in 1984, when he came to NPR.

For more than a quarter-century, Mondello has reviewed movies and covered the arts for NPR News, seeing at least 250 films and 100 plays annually, then sharing critiques and commentaries about the most intriguing on NPR's award-winning newsmagazine All Things Considered. In 2005, he conceived and co-produced NPR's eight-part series "American Stages," exploring the history, reach, and accomplishments of the regional theater movement.

Quinnipiac University Poll
4:35 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

VA's Gubernatorial Race: Identity Issues

Republican Ken Cuccinelli.
Credit Virginia Attorney General's Office

There are still eight long months before Virginians head to the polls to choose a new governor, but Quinnipiac University's Peter Brown expects the race to about as tight then as it is now.

And  that may have a lot to do with candidate identity—or the lack thereof—when it comes to Republican Ken Cuccinelli and Democrat Terry McAuliffe.

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Epilepsy Monitoring Unit
4:17 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Studying Seizures

Eunice Louis at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital in the Epilepsy Monitoring Unit.

Ten percent of Virginians will have a seizure during their lifetime.  Determining the cause and correct course of treatment can often be a long and expensive process. 

But a new hospital unit in Roanoke is dedicated to finding the cause and getting patients get the help they need.

Tucked away on the 7th East floor at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital is the Epilepsy Monitoring Unit, a diagnostic tool unique to Western Virginia 

The closest such units are at the University of Virginia, Duke, and Wake Forest, and some of those have a long waiting list to get in.

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