Arts & Culture

"My Bike" Program Comes to West Virginia

Apr 7, 2014
Ben Adducchio / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

For young children with certain disabilities, it’s just about impossible to ride a conventional bicycle. So a children’s charity known as Variety, which began in Pittsburgh in 1928, along with several people who wanted to get involved, started a program called the “My Bike” program. It provides specialized bicycles, that are built to suit the special needs of the child.

Nearly 30 children received these specialized bikes at a recent ceremony in Morgantown with Variety.

Children in sepia-toned clothes with dirt-smeared faces. Weathered, sunken-eyed women on trailer steps chain-smoking Camels. Teenagers clad in Carhartt and Mossy Oak loitering outside long-shuttered businesses.

Let's look back at the Upper Big Branch Disaster to see what does it take to change coal culture?

Remembering the worst coal mining disaster in history so history does not repeat.

Wheeling Jesuit University hopes you'll join them to "Celebrate Appalachia".

Local maple syrup could be threatened by climate change.

Wheeling Jesuit University in Wheeling just kicked off what will be a month-long celebration of all-things Appalachia. “Celebrate Appalachia” is the name of the series of lectures and events.

Morgantown Changing the Way Deer Are Discovered

Apr 2, 2014
Creative Commons Photo

West Virginia’s got a lot of deer within its borders, and they can be a burden. For instance, the state’s vehicle collision rate with deer is one of the highest in the nation, according to a study by State Farm Insurance. In Morgantown, new technology is being used to monitor these animals.

You see them while driving along the interstate. You’ll catch them in your residential neighborhoods, eating vegetables from your garden.

West Virginia Department of Agriculture

The state Department of Agriculture is seeking nominations for a program honoring contributions by women to the agriculture, forestry and specialty crop industries.
 
The West Virginia Women in Agriculture program has recognized 26 women since it began in 2010. Previous honorees have been involved in a variety of fields including beef, dairy, education, specialty crop production and forestry.
 

As the deadline for getting health insurance approaches, learn what it’s like to go through the process.

A Kentucky basketball great is in a West Virginia federal prison.

A new school in Cabell County, W.Va., could be a model for the rest of the state,

And meet Joe Riley, a Pocahontas County, W.Va., farmer.

This article is part of a special series highlighting the Jewish experience in West Virginia. It's a companion to the television series The Story of the Jews, airing March 25 and April 1 at 8 pm on West Virginia PBS.

We conclude our series on West Virginia's Jewish community - with a story of hope at the Congregation Ahavath Shalom in Bluefield a place where the enthusiasm of youth is bringing a new energy to the older congregation, even if it may be short lived.

National Endowment for the Humanities

The National Endowment for the Humanities has awarded grants to two humanities projects in West Virginia.

West Virginia University Research Corporation received a $59,973 grant to develop a search engine for electronic literature. The search engine would link nine international research centers' databases.
 

Nils Hahn / The Nome Nugget newspaper

The Iditarod. Referred to as the Last Great Race on Earth. The annual long-distance sled dog race occurs in early March from Anchorage, Alaska, northwest to Nome—just over 1000 miles. Mushers and a team of 16 dogs cover the distance in about a fortnight. But there’s another event, the Iditarod Trail Invitational, which covers the same route, but by foot, bike, or ski. This year, a Tucker County resident won the race on foot.

This article is part of a special series highlighting the Jewish experience in West Virginia. It's a companion to the television series The Story of the Jews, airing March 25 and April 1 at 8 pm on West Virginia PBS.
 

We continue our ongoing series exploring the Jewish community in the state as we introduce you to Dr. Edith Levy, a Holocaust survivor who has dedicated years of her life to educating young West Virginians about the holocaust.

Kentucky could get its first Muslim lawmaker if one candidate is successful.

So what do folks in Bobtown, Pa., really think of those pizza gift certificates?

Pickens, W.Va., celebrates the maple syrup harvest.

And some West Virginia rocket boys put their skills to a test.

FFA

"Future Farmers of America" was founded in 1928 with a mission to prepare future generations for the challenges of feeding a growing population. They teach that agriculture is more than planting and harvesting-- it's a science, it's a business and it's an art. There are about 5,000 members of the Future Farmers of America organization in the state of West Virginia, and almost 600,000 across the country. One of the organization’s leaders today is a young man from Point Pleasant.

Meet Wesley Davis. He goes by Wes. He’s 19 and this guy has a story.


Rabbi Urecki
Rabbi Victor Urecki

This article is part of a special series highlighting the Jewish experience in West Virginia. It's a companion to the television series The Story of the Jews, airing March 25 and April 1 at 8 pm on West Virginia PBS.

Temple Beth El
Suzanne Higgins

This article is part of a special series highlighting the Jewish experience in West Virginia. It's a companion to the television series The Story of the Jews, airing March 25 and April 1 at 8 pm on West Virginia PBS.

Tom Sopher was once a teenager helping the rabbi at Temple Beth El in Beckley with maintenance and yard work.

history.com

The History Channel featured a new show this year that focused on ginseng in Appalachia. According to Neilson ratings, the show, called Appalachian Outlaws, was one of the most popular on cable channels, averaging over 2.7 million viewers per each of its six episodes. There’s no official word if season two is in the works, and while some fans are hoping that there will be a second season, other people are hoping the show will just go away.


WVU

National Champs again! The No. 1-ranked West Virginia University rifle team won its 16th NCAA Championship in Murray, Ky., Friday.

The Mountaineers won the championship last year too, and it’s the third win under coach Jon Hammond. WVU’s first title under Hammond came in 2009. The rifle team is the only WVU program to win an NCAA Championship.

Hammond says it was a relaxed win, and that his team was confident, focused, and capable. He also expects good things next year as all five shooters that shot at this year’s championship will return.

Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Two new geocache trails geared toward tourists open this weekend in West Virginia.

The Cabell County/Huntington Geotrail will take visitors on a treasure hunt through Cabell County looking for 15 caches. The Cabell-Huntington Convention and Visitors Bureau web site says the trail will include various types of geocaches including traditionals, unknowns and multis. This is the first time Cabell County is offering a geocache trail.

Meanwhile, the Martinsburg-Berkeley County Convention and Visitors Bureau kicks off its second annual geocache trail.

The Gridiron Is Coming to The Greenbrier

Mar 13, 2014
Greenbier
Bobak Ha'Eri / Wikimedia Commons

The New Orleans Saints announced Thursday they will be using the Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs for part of its 2014 training camp.

General Manager of the Saints Mickey Loomis says the team wants to take advantage of a more moderate climate and setting in West Virginia. It will still spend some time training in New Orleans.

The Saints won a Super Bowl a few years ago under head coach Sean Payton.

The locations, times and dates haven't yet been released of when the Saints will be in town.

Ryan Stanton / Flickr

West Virginia is celebrating some of its best artists and art supporters.
 
The 2014 Governor's Arts Awards ceremony is scheduled for Thursday night at the Culture Center in Charleston.

Nic Persinger / Looking At Appalachia

Fifty years ago President Lyndon Johnson declared a War on Poverty, and photographs taken at the time continued to define what Appalachia looks like for decades afterwards. Now one Appalachian photographer is working to modernize this vision of the region.

Roger May started a new project called Looking at Appalachia: 50 Years After the War on Poverty and He’s asking photographers from across the region to submit photos.

Crystal Good / via Facebook

State officials blame miscommunication for denying a student's plan to recite a poem about the Upper Big Branch mine explosion at a state event.
 
Hurricane High School student Grace Pritt selected "Black Diamonds" by Crystal Good to recite at the Governor's Arts Awards on Thursday in Charleston.
 

Historic Jefferson County Village Making Improvements

Mar 12, 2014
Rebecca Glover / WV Public Radio

The village of Middleway, W.Va., appears to be a moment frozen in time.  The historic district of the village is home to buildings that date back to the late 18th and early 19th centuries, and was a battleground throughout the Civil War. 

Nowadays, the streets are quiet, the cars are few, and the numerous buildings that line the streets are dark and uninviting.  Moss and vines creep up the old War Hospital on Queen Street and residential properties are boarded up and left alone.

Goldenseal magazine, known as the state's journal of traditional life,  is marking its 40th year of publication with a special commemorative issue, on sale now.

Goldenseal has been published quarterly by the West Virginia Division of Culture and History since 1975.

The Spring 2014 edition revisits favorite stories from past issues, along with story updates and additional content.

Kentucky launches a new education program with its federal Race to the Top grant.

Retired military members make a case for better climate change policy.

Calling all photographers! For help documenting Appalachia 50 years after the War on Poverty.

An Appalachian village ushers in the Lenten season West Virginia style.

Traveling 219 / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The little town of Helvetia, W.Va., tried its best to frighten away Old Man Winter at its Fasnacht festival, which takes place every year on the last Saturday before Lent.

Hundreds of people thronged the streets of the remote Swiss community in Randolph County, many of them squeezing into the community hall for the square dance.

People this year had large, papier-mâché masks that resembled long nosed-monsters, Chinese dragons, and druid-like trees.

Teke / wikimedia Commons

  The North Bend Rail Trail soon will undergo repairs to address water damage and other problems.

The 72-mile trail runs from Interstate 77 near Parkersburg to Wolf Summit in Harrison County. It's operated by West Virginia State Parks.

Jessica Lilly

Northfork has been on a boil water advisory since July 2013, even longer than the folks in neighboring Wyoming County in Bud/Alpoca. It’s the seventh boil water advisory since 2009. Some residents in higher elevations have gone more than five weeks without water in their homes.

hollywoodcasinocharlestown.com

West Virginia's largest casino has announced plans to add a 1,200-seat concert venue as it seeks to fend off increased competition from casinos in Maryland.

Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races said Monday that it will begin construction this month on the venue, which will be located on the casino floor and feature a box office and VIP area. Hollywood hopes to open the venue by the end of September. A name for the venue has not yet been selected.
 

Jessica Lilly

Governor Earl Ray Tomblin lifted the state of emergency for nine counties on Friday. It’s been about seven weeks since 300,000 customers lost access to clean water after a chemical leaked into the Elk; a river upstream from the intake to West Virginia American Water’s treatment plant.

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