Panhandle Live is an hour long journey across West Virginia's Eastern Panhandle. The area's longest running local talk program offering relevant news, politics, and information to listeners. Host and WEPM news director Hans Fogle has distinguished himself in the news industry and brings that knowledge to the conversation as he discusses the issues of the day with local officials, state leaders, business members, and anyone else contributing to life in Berkeley, Morgan, and Jefferson Counties.
Through Panhandle Live, Fogle provides his listeners with unequaled access to people making the news happen from outside their front doors to the capitol dome in Charleston. It's a daily combination of journalism, fun, and local flavor.
Please Note:The opinions, analysis, and/or speculation expressed on wepm.com represent those of individual authors, and unless quoted or labled as such do not represent the opinons or policies of Prettyman Broadcasting.
The Girl Scout Council of the Nation's Capitol 2012 Women of Distinction were with us this morning. his year’s recipients are Leslie Crabill from Berkeley County, Ora Dixon from Jefferson County, and Stacy Dugan from Morgan County. They shared a lot about who they are and how they got where they are today.
Leslie Crabill, Vice President & Trust Officer, Program Manager for
BCT Investments at BCT, the Bank of Charles Town
Ora Dixon, Biologist/Training Specialist/Course Leader U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Conservation Training Center
Stacy Dugan, Dietitian War Memorial Hospital, Valley Health Systems & President Morgan County Commission
Also with us via telephone this morning State Senator Mike Hall. He is running for WV Treasurer on the Republican side. He spoke a bit about his own background in finance and how he thought it would contribute to the office. Learn more about his campaign at http://www.hallwv.com/.
And Mike Withrow joined us to talk turkey... and other poultry. Mike is presenting in this year's Berkeley County Youth Fair. He explained to us that there's more to raising poultry than you might imagine. Check out what's happening at the fair online now http://www.berkeleycountyyouthfair.org/
Chairman of the Berkeley County Farmland Protection Board (BCFPB) Floyd Kearsy and Secretary Susan Hawkins were in this morning to talk about Boydville. Last week the board voted to begin the process of selling the historic property. Controversy has surrounded Boydville since the board first purchased it for $2.25 million back in 2005. Floyd and Susan offered some insight into why the property was purchased and what they hope to find in a buyer.
Republican Candidate for WV Agriculture Commissioner Kent Leonhardt called in to talk about his campaign. This retired U.S. Marine has been farming since 1996 and said he decided to run because he wanted people to have a choice.
A great privilege this morning to have lifelong farmer Bill Butler and his grandson John Boyd on with us today. Bill took us back to 1939 when the seeds for what would become the Berkeley County Youth Fair were planted. John spoke about the future of agriculture and the importance of 4-H and the fair in keeping that alive.
It sounds like a good win for child care centers across the state. On Tuesday, Governor Earl Ray Tomblin lifted the freeze on new applications for the child care subsidy program. Director of the Shepherdstown Daycare Center Melissa Holman spoke with us about the positive implications that has for business, but warns there is more to be done.
Doug Hovatter explained the significance of the Berkeley County Youth Fair, the country's only remaining county fair focusing on youth. He spoke about the lessons learned and the importance of community support! Get a full schedule of information at http://www.berkeleycountyyouthfair.org/
Jefferson County Commissioner Lyn Widmyer spoke about the roughly $200,000 “scrape” from last year's budget. About $150,000 of that will be helping out at the CVB and $50,000 will go to the Animal Welfare Society of Jefferson County. We spoke also about the importance of spay neuter. Find out about the society at http://www.awsjc.org/ and the Spay Today Program at 3731 Berryville Pike (Route 340)
Republican Candidate for WV Attorney General Patrick Morrisey spoke to us this morning. The Harpers Ferry resident feels his opponent in the Nivember General Election, Attorney General Darrell McGraw, need to be advising lawmakers on how to deal with upcoming issues such as PPACA (Obamacare) and election reform law. Morrisey feels he has the experience to do that and to bring transparency. Learn more about Morrisey at http://patrickmorrisey.com/
VA Medical Center representatives stopped by to talk about their foster home program. They need families willing to open their home. Anyone interested in discussing or finding out more about the program should contact the Medical Foster Home Coordinator, John Doherty ACSW, LCSW-C at 304-263-0811 or 1-800-817-3807 extension 3272. Find out more about the VA Medical Center at www.martinsburg.va.gov
And we talked about the necessity of planing ahead when traveling over abroad. Dr. Diana Gaviria and Registered Nurse Vicki Greenfield were in to talk vaccination, bottled water and all the other things you should think about on the road. Check out the Berkeley County Health Department anytime at http://www.bchealthdept.org/
How cool that Christian Bale visited victims of the shooting in Colorado. Notice no promotional posters or flashing lights. Seems very genuine.
Berkeley County Director of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Steve Allen gave a good report about the derecho event last month. It looks like it showed the strengths and weaknesses in the system. Steve mentioned that the county is still waiting on figures to come in regarding cost estimates for the damage. Berkeley County was not included in the first round of federal aid. Funny that he mentioned thousands of dollars in ice cream parks and rec lost, but he said it is all part of the over all cost to the county and can be included. Steve also had important information for families and how they can stay safe in an emergency. Learn more at http://www.ready.wv.gov/Pages/default.aspx
Hedgesville resident Crystal Shiflett was depressed for weeks after hearing about the death of 3-year-old Kaiwon Connelly, who died from injuries allegedly caused by his father, and decided to do something to fix the problem. She has gathered almost 1,000 signatures on a petition to increase the penalties for child abusers. She plans to put it before state and federal law makers. Learn more by contacting her at (304) 995-5418.
Blue Ridge CTC student Tyray Goerke represented the Eastern Panhandle in a national cooking contest this year! We learned about the pressure that comes from this type of contest and that she will be serving as a mentor to next year's competitor. She was the first from our area to take the trip to nationals! Tyray plans to continue cooking after graduating in December and hopes to eventually open a restaurant.
And Bryan Clark took us behind the headlines with the Spirit of Jefferson. We met Dr. Sherry Hetzel, Elementary Education Coordinator for Jefferson County Schools. She spoke about the recent Teacher's Academy. We met attendees, high school teacher Ariel Horton and Pre-K teacher Julie Cumbo. They spoke about how the week long experience will make their classrooms better!
And newly published author Lyn Widmyer was in studio to talk about her new book "Chasing Cows: I'm Not in the Suburbs Anymore." It is a compilation and expansion of editorial pieces she has written for local papers over the last decade. The book is available online at either www.amazon.com or www.lynwidmyer.net. Widmyer will hold a book signing at the Jumpin' Java cafe, located at 109 W. Washington St., Charles Town, from 2 to 4 p.m. July 29.
We got to learn a bit about United Bank as President and CEO of the Martinsburg-Berkeley County Chamber of Commerce Tina Combs and I spoke to the bank's Marketing Director John Flaherty. It sounded like they are serious about being an active part of the community. Learn more at www.unitedbank-wv.com/ and of course www.berkeleycounty.org
Nice to catch up on the Eastern Panhandle Free Clinic with Executive Director Michelle Goldman. We also got to meet their very qualified Development Director Vicki Shean. She will have a chance to really work with the people benefiting from their services! Taste of the Town coming up in October! http://www.wvepfc.com/j/
There's still time to catch the 2012 Season of the Contemporary American Theater Festival. James McNeel gave us a nice picture of how the season has gone. Attendance is good, but can always be better. Get tickets now at www.catf.org
And some serious questions after the shooting at a movie theater in Colorado. The conversation about gun control has again moved to the forefront of political conversation around the country. Art Thomm with the West Virginia Citizen's Defense League took time out of a vacation to defend fire arms as a constitutional right.
We covered a lot this morning on Panhandle Live. Sue Flannigan from the West Virginia University Extension Service gave us some tips for canning food. Learn more with a phone call (304) 264-1936 or online at www.berkeleyextension.com.
John Christensen filled us in on Solar 101, a new offering coming this fall to Blue Ridge Community and Technical College. The program is being funded through a Department of Labor grant from the U.S. Department of Labor, Work Force WV, and the WV Community and Technical College System.
Dr. Peter Checkovich and Ann Shipway took a break from packing to talk about their new campus. They will make the move this week and have a big celebration Aug. 3. Dr. Checkovich also spoke about the space the college will start using in the former War memorial Hospital in Mogran County. You can learn more about Blue Ridge at their website http://www.blueridgectc.edu/
Judy Boykin and Cheryl Durst spoke about some legislation they hope to get in place to protect animals in the area. They also talked about opportunities to have pets spayed and neutered. Check out Judy's pin in honor of the millions of animals euthanized across the country each year. Find out how to help http://www.animaladvocateswv.com/