Arts & Culture

Brian Blauser / Mountain Stage

So that snow thing? It's still happening. (Sadly.) So we're going to make the best of it by catching up on some cool (pun intended) archived Red Molly and Drive-By Truckers before they each hit the Mountain Stage later this month. 

Craig Kief

Singer-songwriter Sam Beam has been releasing indie folk records under the name Iron & Wine for over a decade. With his newest release, Archive Series Volume No. 1, Beam's going back to basics with bedroom folk melodies and down-home whispers. We talk about his music, his new short film, "Dreamers and Makers are My Favorite People" (which features footage from his 2014 stop at the Jerry Run Summer Theater in West Virginia) and, of course, his infamous beard. 

Tim Kiser / wikimedia Commons

Beckley's historic district and two other sites are on the Preservation Alliance of West Virginia's latest endangered properties list.

The other sites are a farmhouse built around 1845 in Mount Nebo and a service station built in 1945 in Fayetteville.

Executive director Danielle LaPresta tells The Register-Herald that the preservation group normally works with individual properties. But she says Beckley's entire national historic district is in eminent danger because of neglect, demolitions and inappropriate development.

Garkeith / wikimedia Commons

  A Clarksburg family has donated a two-century-old log house on their property to Fort New Salem.

Bradley Franz tells The Exponent Telegram that he and his wife, Dominique, believe the house was built in the late 1790s. It was constructed by his wife's fifth great-grandfather, John Reynolds.

photo by Cecelia Mason

Appalachia is no stranger to industrial or environmental disasters that affect our water. Because of crumbling water infrastructure in many coalfield communities, folks often turn to bottled water for regular use.

But not all bottled water is equal. At least that’s according to judges at the 25th annual Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting & Competition, which took place February 19-22. The competition judges the taste of bottled water, purified water, and municipal city waters from across the world were judged.

West Virginia and Regional History Collection, West Virginia University Libraries

Earlier this month in West Virginia, a CSX train derailed, causing giant fireballs to stretch hundreds of feet into the air and one home to be destroyed. Investigators are trying to figure out what happened to cause this derailment. February also marks the anniversary of other industrial accidents. On this episode, we'll hear from folks who have survived them, and hear why many people are concerned that more of these accidents could happen in the future.

Richinstead / wikimedia Commons

West Virginia University's Mountaineer mascot will get to serve another year.

Michael Garcia was chosen from among four finalists Tuesday night as the WVU mascot for the 2015-16 academic year. The senior political science major from Fairmont served for the past year.

Besides the musket and buckskins, the job comes with some other benefits. As the Mountaineer mascot, he's traveled across the country making hundreds of appearances and attending athletic events on and off campus.

Bkwparadox / wikimedia Commons

A Kickstarter campaign is planned to raise money to preserve a 180-year-old pavilion in Greenbrier County.

The campaign's goal is to raise $25,000. The Charleston Gazette reports that the campaign will begin on Sunday with a kick-off party at the convention and visitors bureau in Lewisburg.

The Greek Revival-style pavilion was once part of the Blue Sulphur Springs spa between Dawson and Alderson. Union troops burned every structure at the site except the pavilion during the Civil War.

https://www.allegiantair.com/

Allegiant Air plans to offer direct flights from north central West Virginia to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, beginning this summer.

The Exponent Telegram reports that the flights from North Central West Virginia Airport in Bridgeport will be offered on Fridays and Mondays from June 5 through Aug. 17.

North Central West Virginia Airport Director Rick Rock tells the newspaper that there's been local demand for direct flights to Myrtle Beach for some time.

CommonsHelper2 Bot / wikimedia commons

The Division of Natural Resources has received a $50,000 grant to support its effort to restore elk in West Virginia.

The Charleston Daily Mail reports that the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation presented the grant to the DNR on Sunday at the Natural Resources Commission's quarterly meeting.

The DNR hopes to bring elk from neighboring Kentucky to restore the state's herd. West Virginia's last native elk was killed around 1875.

http://www.wvchallenge.org/site/state/wv/node/index.shtml

Adam Cleek is a former Mountaineer Challenge Academy Alum and Purple Heart recipient. Cleek will speak later today to 800 congressional, corporate and community leaders at the National Guard Youth Foundation Youth’s Challenge Gala in Washington D.C.

Glynis Board

On this episode, we’re learning more about Appalachian roots. Some industries are growing in Appalachia that aren’t really new at all, but new practices are building on traditional crafts. While these  changes develop across Appalachia, we inevitably want to hang onto our identity. Strong roots, after all, are one of the characteristics many of us take pride in.

Magnus Manske / wikimedia Commons

Police in Wheeling say a suspension bridge has been closed after a cable snapped.

The Wheeling Suspension Bridge was closed Friday morning. Media outlets report the cable was on a snapped power line near a jogging trail.

In 2013, the bridge was closed after a corroded cable on top of the span snapped on the downtown Wheeling side. The cable helps to keep the bridge from swaying.

Brian Blauser / Mountain Stage

Mountain Stage is all you need when it comes to music discovery.

Richinstead / wikimedia Commons

 Four finalists are competing to be the next musket-toting Mountaineer mascot.

The four will compete in a cheer-off Monday during the West Virginia University basketball game in Morgantown.

The finalists are junior Reed Andrews, a chemical engineering major from Morgantown; freshman Ethan Ball, a business marketing major from Princeton; junior Troy Clemons, a sport management major from Maxwelton; and senior Michael Garcia, a political science major from Fairmont.

Today we’re talking about love – but wait, it’s not what you think. This episode is kind of one big love letter to Appalachia. We’re showing off some of that Appalachian pride by talking about our complicated love for this place.

Mike Cline / wikimedia Commons

West Virginia officials are promoting state parks by offering prizes for catching specially tagged trout.

Starting in March, people who catch those trout at some West Virginia state parks will earn $100 discounts on week-long stays at designated state-park cabins.

The Charleston Gazette reports that the promotion is being sponsored by the Division of Natural Resources will begin when five state park lakes receive their March trout stockings.

http://www.wvculture.org/agency/cultcenter.html

A new exhibit is showcasing West Virginia's role in military history.

The West Virginia Division of Culture and History says the new exhibition, "West Virginians Answering the Call," is opening Friday at the Culture Center in Charleston.

The exhibit features military uniforms, medals and insignia and arms from the West Virginia State Museum's collection and from the West Virginia National Guard.

Officials say the artifacts date from the American Revolution to Afghanistan and also include a scale model of the USS West Virginia.

Valentine's day isn't a favorite holiday for all people- especially not people who aren't in a romantic relationship. But what about a bundle of unexpected letters, written by strangers from a little town far away? Well a town in West Virginia is about to receive about 700 love letters. These letters express well wishes- even for those who claim to be left out of Valentine's Day.

Devilal / wikimedia Commons

A candle light vigil is schedule for this evening in protest of the killings of three American Muslim students at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.

The vigil, organized by local high school and college students, will be held in front of Riggleman Hall on the University of Charleston campus at 6:30.

The students are calling on local muslims to show public support for what they call senseless killings of the three students. 

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