Arts & Culture

Caitlin Tan

See a recipe for salt rising bread at the bottom of this page. 

Salt Rising bread has a long history in Appalachia. Typically, people outside of the region have never heard of it.

The bread often brings to mind a variety of distinctive scents and grandmothers tending to a time-intensive dough in a wood-heated kitchen.

Caitlin Tan / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

This week on Inside Appalachia, we’ll hear from Appalachians who have a knack for making things with their hands -- people who make the essentials of life in the old ways. 

“And when I sit down at one of those looms and I start creating a piece of cloth, I feel connected to the place of my ancestors, the people who have come before,” said weaver Jane Gilchrist.


Corey Knollinger / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

West Virginia’s small but active hip-hop community is striving to normalize hip-hop as an art form. The YWCA in Wheeling recently held an event called Hip Hop: A Black Tie Affair to help bring legitimacy to the community in the Northern Panhandle.  

 


 

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Moring, Mountain Artworks is a studio in Mercer County that houses the unique flair, personality, passion and dreams of metal sculptor Michael “Mike” Sizemore. His work often consists of recycled materials. For example, he might take an old glass ashtray, surround it with metal shaped like flower petals to create a beautiful, yard ornament suncatcher. Inside Appalachia host Jessica Lilly found out that while his art earns him money, he’s also chosen to keep an unusual, but practical, day job.

Jessica Lilly / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Mountain Artworks is a studio in Mercer County that houses the unique flair, personality, passion, and dreams of metal sculptor Michael “Mike” Sizemore. Mike has a particular fondness for copper, but he uses all sorts of materials in his work, even recycled glass ashtrays. Like many artists, Mike keeps a day job to pay the bills.


The comprehensive education reform bill passed out of the House of Delegates on a vote of 71 to 29. We’ll recap the day’s action on the bill, and host Suzanne Higgins talks with Randall Reid-Smith, Curator of the West Virginia Department of Arts, Culture and History.

Larry Groce and Bob Thompson in the StoryCorps booth talking about Bob's move to the Mountain State.
StoryCorps

West Virginia Music Hall-of-Famer Bob Thompson moved to West Virginia from New York City almost 60 years ago. He came to the Mountain State to attend college at what is now West Virginia State University. He met adversity, fell in love, grew with his music and learned about the people of West Virginia.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, West Virginia has a small but active hip-hop community around the state. 

The YWCA in Wheeling recently held the event “Hip Hop: a Black Tie Affair” to encourage the art form and help bring more legitimacy to the community. Corey Knollinger has more.

Dumplings, Road Trips, and 'Gung Hei Fat Choy!'

Feb 11, 2019
Mike Costello / 100 Days in Appalachia

Last spring I got an email from someone named Peter Lo: 

“I am from New York City and I’ve been living in West Virginia for the past 13 years. I recently moved to Clarksburg 1.5 years ago and wanted to inquire about having a few friends join me in one of your workshops to eat and learn about some Appalachian cuisine.”

Shayla Klein / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Along the banks of the Ohio River and other waterways, there are several places where -- after a heavy rain -- Native American artifacts still crop up today. Despite these clues, archeologists and historians haven’t been able to paint a clear picture of the people who lived here before white settlers.

Artifacts have led archeologists to believe people first came to the region about 14,000 years ago, hunting woolly mammoths and dodging sabertooth cats. There were also people here 2,500 years ago building mounds. But most of what is known outside of that revolves around tribes that lived in the region around the late 1600’s -- tribes  forced to relocate in the mid 1800’s. And there’s a lot of speculation about that, too.

Photos by StoryCorps, graphic by Jesse Wright/WVPB

StoryCorps producers brought their mobile recording studio to Charleston, West Virginia, in fall 2018, and recorded more than 100 stories. These recording are between friends, co-workers and family members. StoryCorps’ mission is to preserve and share humanity’s stories to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world. These recordings will be archived at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress in the largest collection of oral histories in the world.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, we hear from WVPB’s Us & Them podcast. Host Trey Kay explores one of the world’s most fundamental ‘us and them’ divides -- the power imbalance between men and women. We hear an excerpt from an episode called “Cave Men, The Patriarchy & Fairytales.”

AP

Marshall University is honoring NBA Hall of Famer Hal Greer with a statue.

Teachers on strike in the rotunda of the West Virginia Capitol.
Kara Lofton / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Teachers in at least 30 counties across West Virginia participated in a walk-in demonstration Wednesday morning, and teachers in all 55 counties wore red to show solidarity.


On this West Virginia Morning, for many teenagers, nothing is more captivating than the steady stream of notifications on their phones. Almost 95% of American teens own a smartphone, and 45 percent say that they spend most of their time online. As part of an Appalachia Health News youth reporting project, Fayette Institute of Technology High School Seniors Chloe Perdue and Keesha Moore examine how social media can affect teens’ interactions.

Jesse Wright

Around the holidays, homemade treats are everywhere — whether it be Christmas cookies, gingerbread houses or fruit cakes. One Swiss holiday tradition involves making Rosettes — light, crispy, deep-fried pastries made using a floral-shaped iron mold.

Children and their families making grittibanz in Helvetia, W.Va. for the Feast of Saint Nicholas. Dec. 1, 2018.
Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

In Helvetia, West Virginia, Christmastime, like all the town’s events, is a community affair. On the Saturday closest to the 5th of December, the town celebrates their unique heritage with tales of Saint Nicholas, sweet treats, square dancing, a potluck dinner, and best of all… Swiss grittibanz, a special kind of holiday bread.

Hear this story on Inside Appalachia.

Rosettes Recipe

Dec 21, 2018
Jesse Wright, WVPB

1 Pint Medium Cream

6 eggs, well beaten

2 Cups flour

(Bourbon to taste. Not part of the original recipe, but added by Mike Costello.)

Beat cream, eggs and flour until light. Heat fat/oil very hot for deep frying. Rosette iron should be in the oil heating at the same time.

Dip hot rosette iron into batter, almost to the top edge of the iron. Put immediately into the hot oil and remove the iron as soon as the rosette slips off.

Brown on both sides (this is easier than it sounds and great fun).

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, we get a sneak peek at this week’s episode of Inside Appalachia, where we’ll share some of our favorite holiday stories. We’ll take you to the tiny mountain town of Helvetia, West Virginia, which has a connection to the beloved Christmas classic, “Silent Night.” Eric Douglas and Molly Born report.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, we hear an excerpt from the latest episode of Us & Them, in which host Trey Kay responds to a cyclical flare up of social media comments related to a “War on Christmas.” Hubbub over politically correct holiday greetings, or nativity scenes on government property, traditionalists and secularists are often at odds.

In this excerpt, Trey speaks with a childhood friend who worries the religious aspects of Christmas are being eroded from the holiday.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, health reporter Kara Lofton spent the semester working with fifth-graders at Valley Elementary school on a youth-reporting project. In the following audio postcard, we’ll hear from six of those students about how holiday traditions help them feel connected to their families and their communities.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, journalist and professor Bonnie Stewart joins us to talk about the recent 50th anniversary of the Farmington Mine Disaster.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

This West Virginia Morning, we have another segment in an occasional series called Recovery Stories –– conversations from the heart of the nation’s opioid crisis. Today, we hear a conversation between Dustin Aubrey and Bob Lloyd. They first met at a Dayton, Ohio, support group. Dustin’s in recovery. And Bob’s adult son struggles with substance use disorder.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

You might’ve heard Trey Kay, host of WVPB’s podcast Us & Them engage in a conversation during the past several weeks, in a series called “Red State Blue State”,  about the culture differences between West Virginia and southern California. In the latest episode of Us & Them, Trey finds kindred spirits in a trio of Latino comedians who call themselves "Culture Clash". Just like Trey, these comedians explore the space between cultural divides. We hear an excerpt of that episode on this West Virginia Morning.

Farmington No. 9: The West Virginia Disaster that Changed Coal Mining Forever

Nov 20, 2018
Jesse Wright / WVPB

In 1969, the world’s attention turned upward to the Moon, as Neil Armstrong took humankind’s first momentous step off Earth onto another world.

But that year also saw momentous federal legislation spurred by a disaster that riveted the nation’s attention downward, hundreds of feet below the Earth and the hills of West Virginia.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning… Vultures usually get a bad rap. But that hasn’t always been the case – find out why. And we hear a story from the Allegheny Front's Kara Holsopple about having tricky conversations over Thanksgiving dinner.

Courtney Hergesheimer

On a soggy autumn day in late October, a group of university students stood by the edge of an orange-tinted creek in the southeast Ohio village of Corning, a place built during coal mining’s boom days and now struggling amid a loss of jobs and population. As the group listened, watershed specialist Michelle Shively explained a plan to make the water here run clear: take the orange sludge and turn it into paint. 

The "Fallout Boy" stands in front of the West Virginia Capitol.
WV Tourism

Bethesda Game Studios' "Fallout 76" video game hit store shelves this week. West Virginia Tourism officials are hoping to promote the state to a wider audience with the game’s launch.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, seven of the nation’s leading causes of death are found at higher rates here in Appalachia compared to the rest of the country. But there is some diversity in these statistics.

When researchers analyzed all 420 counties in Appalachia, they found 42 outperformed the statistical odds. A team of researchers has been studying why these communities are outliers. As Roxy Todd reports, in all of the communities that researchers studied, they found a culture of sharing and volunteering. She visited one such community in West Virginia.

Coach Kellie: A Tiny West Virginia High School is Making Football History

Nov 12, 2018
Hannan High School head football coach Kellie Thomas speaks with players following their loss to Parkersburg Catholic.
Zack Harold / 100 Days in Appalachia

It took a few weeks for Hannan High School principal Karen Oldham to realize her school might have made history. She was so busy with the day-to-day grind of running the small, rural Mason County school that it didn’t cross her mind, until an elderly alumnus brought it to her attention.

Pages