Arts & Culture

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.

Same sex marriage makes headlines again this week across the country and in Appalachia.

An outdoor classroom in Virginia addresses watershed issues.

Tourism professionals aren’t worried about the water at a conference in Charleston, W.Va.

And Traveling 219 makes another visit to the Tygart Valley Homestead in Randolph County W.Va.

After music, I love the graphic arts, photography, film and almost any variation thereof.

Graphic artists, like Ian Bode, fascinate me. I am not filled with envy, but with wonder at their ability to transform a blank canvas or an ordinary sheet of paper into something living, thought-provoking or transformative. How on earth do they do it?

Water donations from across the country have poured into Wyoming County since our original report.  The folks in Bud and Alpoca were dealing with unpotable water, running a dark brown at times, months before the chemical spill in Charleston.

Jessica Lilly

The legislative session last year is often referred to as the "year of education reform" as lawmakers looked for ways to improve education quality.

West Virginia is ranked 48th in teacher pay and right around the middle of the road compared to other states for cost of living. Educators say there is a connection to quality.

Although West Virginia teachers get a 1.5 percent pay increase each year until they reach 35 years, teacher salaries are among the lowest paid in the nation.

In this visually-driven documentary, The Smithsonian Channel highlights the natural (and occasionally the man-made) beauty of West Virginia. The hour-long piece provides a look at various aspects of the state's history and culture, from our formation as a result of the civil war to how industry has played a part in shaping our economic landscape and topography.

As national Holocaust Day of Remembrance approached, 92 year old Holocaust survivor Daniel Kereth said years on the run and in prison were life-defining.

As Kereth prepared to speak at a remembrance ceremony at Mountain State University in 2011, Suzanne Higgins visited him in his home in Bluefield.

  

  The 24th Annual International Water Tasting took place Saturday in Berkeley Springs, W.Va., and a Canadian  town walked away with the trophy for Best 

  Municipal Tap Water.

Among the judges for this year's competition was West Virginia Public Broadcasting Executive Director Scott Finn, who documented the event including a popular activity after the winners are announced, the "water rush" where members of the audience get to grab as much free bottled water as they can carry.

Some land in Wise Virginia has gone from producing coal, to producing grapes.

West Virginians debate whether frack waste should be dumped in local landfills.

Two long forgotten African American poets are recognized.

And we learn more about jazz pianist Bob Thompson.

Joanne Jaeger Tomblin - What A Doll!

Feb 20, 2014
First Lady doll
Steve Rotsch / W.Va. Governor's Office

First Lady Joanne Jaeger Tomblin today unveiled the newest commemorative doll in the First Ladies of West Virginia doll collection.   The doll  was hand-sculpted by Washington, D.C.-based artist Ping Lau and features First Lady Tomblin in her Inaugural Ball gown.

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