Seasonal Troubles
8:40 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Summer Season Fires a Threat to the Great Dismal Swamp

Credit http://www.fws.gov/

Summer is just about here,  and in many of the nation’s national parks, that means forest fires.  Here in Virginia, it may also bring a different kind of blaze - one that threatens a vast wetland and wildlife refuge near Norfolk. 

After losing thousands of acres in years past, experts have come up with a plan for saving the Great Dismal Swamp.  

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Looking for Citizen Scientists
5:09 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Itchy and Scratchy: Tracking Poison Ivy

Now you may start feeling itchy when you hear this next story.  For anyone who’s had poison ivy, just hearing the word can be enough to start you scratching. 

But as common as the plant is, there is actually very little scientific information about poison ivy, until now.

Scientists at Virginia Tech are looking at ways to control poison ivy naturally. And they’re asking for your help to do it.

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Landmark Supreme Court Decision
4:14 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Brown vs. Board of Education Anniversary

Governor McAuliffe marked the 60th anniversary of the landmark Supreme Court decision, Brown versus Board of Education, with a visit to a Richmond high school.

African-American students from Virginia had joined that case in the 1950s after walking out of their racially segregated school in protest of its dilapidated conditions and inferior curriculum.

The governor provided a brief civics lesson—tying issues six decades ago to issues today.

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Environment
1:00 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

Climate Change & Election Season

Credit Stock Photo/morguefile.com

Republicans say a new Environmental Protection Agency rule will kill jobs in Virginia and they see it as a way to win November's election.

A new White House assessment on climate change paints a dire picture for coastal states like Virginia. Democratic Senator Tim Kaine says the writing is on the wall.

"Being vulnerable to sea level rises. That plus agricultural and forestry effects is every reason why we should be very concerned."

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A Different Kind of Church
6:50 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Beers & Hymns: A New Approach to the Sunday Ritual

As churches struggle to keep young Americans in the fold, some are moving their services to surprising places. In Charlottesville, more than three dozen of the faithful assemble at a bar each month to drink beer and sing hymns. 

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Redistricting Trouble
6:40 am
Thu May 22, 2014

Virginia's 3rd District Still Dealing with Redistricting Issues

Virginia's Congressional 3rd District

Three Virginia plaintiffs are asking a federal judge to delay the upcoming June primaries—AND if lawmakers fail to implement a new congressional redistricting plan, impose one himself.  Although the plan was pre-cleared by the U.S. Justice Department, both sides of a lawsuit that alleges gerrymandering began presenting their case. 

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Virginia Cooperative Extension Program
3:53 pm
Wed May 21, 2014

Masters of Food

Credit Virginia Cooperative Extension

Increasing interest in locally grown food is spurring a revival of ancient methods of preserving that food.  With all the effort that goes into growing it, the next step is finding ways to store it for future consumption.

 

For decades, few people thought about where their food came from, beyond the grocery store shelf. But that’s changed in recent years and many people are interested in knowing more about the food they eat.  Melissa Chase is the state coordinator for the Virginia Cooperative Extension’s Master Food Volunteer program.

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Arts & Culture
9:01 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Harmonizing on Harmonicas

Jack Hopkins, left, and Frank Jamison, right, jam together at weekly meetings of the Capital Harmonica Club, which Jack founded in 1991.
Credit Eric Shimelonis

It’s said the harmonica was invented by German instrument maker Christian Friedrich Ludwig Buschmann in 1821. Nearly 100 years later, a man was born who would take his passion for the harmonica to another level… and keep it there for nearly another 100 years.

 

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UVA Research
8:35 am
Wed May 21, 2014

Big Data & Bike Safety

Alec Gosse
Credit Fariss Samarrai

Urban planners in Virginia are trying to make bicycling safer, but they’re hampered by a lack of statistics about who’s riding where.

Alec Gosse rides his bike to work at a Charlottesville company that analyzes data, and this year he was working on a PhD in environmental engineering. Those interests led him to try and solve a problem daunting city planners.

“There was no data for how many bikes were using various roads in the city.  It just didn’t exist.”

Without that information, they didn’t know where to make road improvements for cyclists.

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Making the Festival Rounds
2:44 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Waking Marshall Walker

Few college students expect to end up working with their professors, but one of TV’s leading ladies is now sharing the credits with her mentor – a professor of drama department at UVA. 

Waking Marshall Walker is a short film about a man who owns a vineyard.  His wife has died.  He’s depressed, unable to remember things, and after several caregivers quit, his daughter is frustrated.

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