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On the Record

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What do very old people know about being happy that most of us don’t? Can we put their approach into use in our own lives? New York Times journalist John Leland spent a year with six elders and put what he learned in his new book, Happiness Is a Choice You Make -- Lessons from a Year Among the Oldest Old. Original air date: 1/31/18

Rob Stemple / Flickr via Creative Commons

Maryland’s beloved terrapin faces a serious threat from climate change. Biologist Christopher Rowe of the University of Maryland's Center for Environmental Science describes how rising sea levels and warming temperatures jeopardize the terrapins’ survival. Read more about the threats to the terrapin here.

Then, fueled by solar and water power, Mr. Trash Wheel and his companions tirelessly pull litter from the harbor. Adam Lindquist of the Waterfront Partnership’s Healthy Harbor Initiative gives us an update on their progress.

Ida B's Table

Sharing a meal creates community, and signature dishes give a sense of culture and culinary history. Ida B’s Table in Baltimore shares that philosophy -- it’s behind a series of special dinners that start Sunday. We talk with Chef David K. Thomas of Ida B’s, and Chef BJ Dennis of Charleston South Carolina, who are cooking up the Ancestor’s Dinner. It will feature flavors of the Gullah Geechee cuisine and stories of its people.  For information on the Ancestor's Dinner at Ida B's Table, visit this link.

Other culinary events this weekend:

Off the Chainsaw Cookout at A Workshop of Our Own and The 6th Annual Muslim Food Fest at The Islamic Society of Baltimore. Enjoy!

Here’s a Stoop Story from Gregory Hartzler Miller about going off the grid and finding his truth. You can hear his story and others at stoopstorytelling.com or on the Stoop podcast

At 90, former U.S. Senator Joseph Tydings has fascinating stories to spin of growing up in a family both wealthy and politically connected. As a young delegate in Annapolis Tydings was already irritating those in power in 1960 when he threw himself into campaigning for a presidential hopeful named Jack Kennedy.

With John Frece, former U.S. Sen. Joseph Tydings has written a memoir titled "My Life in Progressive Politics: Against the Grain". Frece will be speaking about what went into writing it Sunday at 5 pm at the Ivy Bookshop on Falls Road.

Melissa Gerr

Eating nutritious food is an important step toward a healthy lifestyle. For some, making nutritious food is a main ingredient to improving self-confidence and finding a path to gainful employment. We talk with Deborah Haust, director of School of Food, and we visit the social enterprise City Seeds in East Baltimore, to meet chef Aharon Denrich and some of his staff.

For information about cooking classes visit School of Food.

For information about catering, visit City Seeds.

Next One Up for College

Aug 7, 2018
Next One Up Instagram

Many of the hurdles that keep young black men from getting into college can trip them up even once they’re there. Young black athletes face the same stumbling blocks. But a community of mentors can make all the difference. Founder Matt Hanna explains how the ‘Next One Up Foundation’ connects with young men through sports, providing support from middle school through college, graduation and on into the workforce. And two students describe the family they've found with ‘Next One Up’.

Joelip / Flickr via Creative Commons

A dozen Russian intelligence officers have been indicted for tampering in the 2016 election. Plus, Maryland officials recently learned a Russian oligarch bought a software firm that holds a state contract for voter registration. How is Maryland ensuring the security of its elections in November?

We speak to Linda Lamone, administrator of the State Board of Elections, and deputy administrator Nikki Charlson. And Hopkins computer science professor and security expert Avi Rubin tells what he learned from serving as an elections judge.

Charles Townley Chapman

One hundred years ago an idea took off--literally--from the grassy airfield in College Park: could these new flying machines move mail between cities faster than trains? Congress okayed a test. Andrea Cochrane Tracey, director of the College Park Aviation Museum, reflects on how basic things were in 1918.

The first flights during sunny August went well. Cydney Shank Wentsel, the granddaughter of Robert Shank, an early pilot, tells us how wintry snow and fog raised the dangers, and pilots pushed for more control over when they’d fly.

For information about events surrounding the airmail anniversary at the College Park Aviation Museum, visit this link.

To view a documentary about Robert Shank, visit this link.

For a look at commemorative stamps for the airmail anniversary, visit this link.

Ivy Bookshop

We think of species taking a long time to adapt to changes in their surroundings. Not necessarily, says evolutionary biologist and ecologist Menno Schilthuizen. In his latest book, "Darwin Comes to Town: How the Urban Jungle Drives Evolution," he asserts we don’t have to look far for evidence: Schilthuizen says plants and animals can adapt quickly to survive. Things like mating preferences and diets are in flux when it comes to city living.

National Federation of the Blind

Thousands of blind people travel and commute every day. But they can face challenges, barriers--even discrimination--along the way. Stacey Cervenka, who is blind, tells us about her plans for a Blind Traveler’s Network, a website to provide tips and recommendations for accessible vacation travel. She's a winner of the 2018 Holman Prize for Blind Ambition.

And we meet Mark Riccobono, president of the National Federation of the Blind. He discusses advocacy for equal treatment and access for blind and visually impaired people, and notes that people's perceptions of what it's like to be blind is often the toughest thing to overcome.

Elvert Barnes / Flickr

A city task force is proposing an overhaul in how Baltimore handles citizen complaints of misconduct by police officers. The consent decree between Baltimore and the US Department of Justice tasked the Community Oversight Task Force with studying ways to hold police accountable. In its 74-page report, the task force urges disbanding the current Civilian Review Board and creating two new oversight panels. We hear from task force member Catalina Bryd and chair Ray Kelly.

A few months after the September 11th attacks, Anthony Moll did what a lot of teenagers did: raised his hand and took an oath to the U.S. army. For a working-class kid in a stagnant city, the army meant escape. For a bisexual man with pink hair, the army at that time also meant “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” His new memoir is titled, "Out of Step".

Anthony Moll will speak about "Out of Step," as part of the Writers LIVE series, tomorrow night, 6:30 pm, at the Enoch Pratt Free Library. More detail here.

Melissa Gerr

It was 289 years ago that the Maryland General Assembly issued Baltimore a town charter -- actually, voted out on July 30, 1729 … but Charm City is celebrating tonight with a party put on by Live Baltimore.

The little settlement on the Patapsco was named for Cecil Calvert, second Baron Baltimore, first proprietor of the Maryland colony. Calvert never visited his colony. But even if he had, it’s safe to say neither he nor any of the succeeding Barons Baltimore would recognize what the city has become. What hopes do those who live here now hold for Baltimore? We asked nearly two dozen denizens -- From Mayor Catherine Pugh ... to film director and author John Waters -- to make a wish and tell us what they most desire for Charm City, on the threshold of its 289th year.

Jesus Perez tells his Stoop story about adjusting to life in Baltimore after his family left Mexico and fighting for immigrant’s rights in the United States. You can hear his story and others at stoopstorytelling.com.

Ivy Bookshop

African-Americans living free in Baltimore before the Civil War were constantly testing whether the law and courts saw them as citizens, with rights to be respected. In her new book, Birthright Citizens: A History of Race and Rights in Antebellum America, Johns Hopkins Professor Martha Jones argues the free blacks of Baltimore shaped the idea of birthright citizenship that made it into the U.S. constitution and that their struggle still carries meaning for today’s immigrants.

Phillip Capper / Flickr via Creative Commons

More than seven thousand languages are spoken around the globe, and researchers have picked up on a curious fact: as you move from the Earth’s poles toward the equator, you hear more languages. Why do humans speak so many languages? And why so many more in the tropics? Do languages diversify the way animal species do?

Dr. Michael Gavin, an ecologist in Colorado State University’s Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources, is looking for answers on islands in the South Pacific.

This program originally aired August 15, 2017.

Kara Mae Harris

There’s much more to Maryland cuisine than crabcakes and Old Bay. Have you tasted Peanut Pickle Sandwiches and Baltimore Caramels? Or sipped tomato Wine? Kara Mae Harris has. The Food enthusiast and recipe sleuth is painstakingly preserving Maryland’s culinary heritage across dozens of decades ... one recipe at a time. Harris tests favorites and reports back on her blog, ‘Old Line Plate.’ She’s also created a searchable database of more than 30-thousand recipes and has made some surprising discoveries.

2MADEIRA / Flickr via Creative Commons

Former U.S.A. gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar abused hundreds of athletes, and competitors in other sports are raising alarms about more abuse at the hands of coaches, as well as cover-ups of inappropriate or illegal behavior.

We speak with filmmaker Jill Yesko about her forthcoming web-series on abuse in Olympic athletics, "Broken Trust".

And we hear from Eva Rodansky, a speedskater who represented the US on the national circuit. She describes the difficulty of pressing officials to investigate claims. Then, Olympic swimmer Nancy Hogshead Makar, now a lawyer and CEO of Champion Women, details new reforms aimed at protecting athletes.

More information on exposing abuse in Olympic athletics below:
Nancy Hogshead-Makar: #MeToo shows need for tighter rules in club and Olympic sports 
E
x-U.S. athlete tells Speed Skating Canada of head coach's alleged sexual relationships with skaters
Explosive Report Says USA Swimming Covered Up Hundreds Of Sexual Abuse Cases
4 Accusers Sue Taekwondo Champion Brothers For Alleged Sexual Abuse
U.S. Center for SafeSport

Baltimore Department of Planning

Average citizens--the very people affected by city zoning and development decisions --are often in the dark about how to take part in the discussions that shape their neighborhoods. To help residents have a voice at the table, The Department of Planning is launching the Baltimore Planning Academy. We talk with Stephanie Smith, Assistant Director for ‘Equity, Engagement and Communications … and City Planner Martin French to learn why informed engagement is important.

That was Towanda Carter’s Stoop Story about how it’s possible to rise to life’s challenges when people expect the best of you. You can hear her story and others at stoopstorytelling.com.

Once you leave the supportive embrace of school, pursuing music can pose hurdles. Whether it’s playing an instrument or singing, how do you make time for rehearsals? Should you take lessons? And if you do, how to find the right teacher? How do you avoid physical strains and cope with performance nerves? Yet thousands of adults pursue it because they love it.

Baltimore native Amy Nathan surveyed hundreds for her new book, Making Time for Making Music. We hear from musicians Max Weiss, Baltimore Magazine editor, and Liz Sogge, a data specialist for Johns Hopkins.

Forgetting someone’s name, getting caught with spinach in your teeth. We all experience cringe worthy moments, but some people seem never to grow out of their awkward teenage years. Psychologist Ty Tashiro tells us why these mishaps happen and why some people are more awkward than others. His book is called Awkward: The Science of Why We’re Socially Awkward and Why That’s Awesome. Tashiro says that awkward behavior can have its advantages. Original airdate 7.25.17

Photograph by Mary Garrity, restored by Adam Cuerden / Wikimedia Commons

The pioneering investigative reporter and anti-lynching activist Ida B. Wells was born into slavery in Mississippi 156 years ago. Her tenacity and loyalty to the truth remain a standard for all journalists. We ask her great granddaughter Michelle Duster about Wells’ legacy.

Click here for ticket information for the Q&A and cocktail reception tonight at Ida B's Table. Read more information about the Ida B. Wells Memorial Foundation.

Plus, Lucy Dalglish, journalism dean at the University of Maryland, tells of a scholarship honoring the victims of the Capital Gazette shooting. More information about the Capital Gazette Memorial Scholarship Fund here. You can submit stories here to remember alumni Gerald Fischman and John McNamara and faculty member Rob Hiaasen.

Garrett Berberich

When summer vacation comes to an end, and kids return to the classroom, many find they’ve fallen behind. What can be done to prevent summer learning loss?

The Summer Arts and Learning Academy is a free camp for elementary school students run by Baltimore City Schools and Young Audiences of Maryland. We hear from Stacie Sanders Evans, head of Young Audiences of Maryland, who says pairing teachers and artists can halt summer slide and make math and reading fun. And from Lara Ohanian, Director of Differentiated Learning at Baltimore City Public Schools.

Click here for information on SummerREADS. Click here for a list of other drop-in programs for Baltimore students.

Plus, slime and other do-it-yourself experiments at the Maryland Science Center. Samantha Blau, External Programs Manager at the Maryland Science Center, describes ways to encourage scientific exploration.

Check out the calendar of events at the MD Science Center here. Click here for more "Science at Home" activities.

National Great Blacks in Wax Museum

The National Great Blacks in Wax Museum is filled with dozens of life-size, lifelike wax figures that illustrate the accomplishments of African American notables--historical and contemporary. Saturday, July 14, history will extend beyond the museum walls for the Voices of History street fair. Museum co-founder and director, Dr. Joanne Martin gives us highlights of the fair, and discusses why she and her late husband started the museum 35 years ago.

Shindana Cooper tells her Stoop Story about an ill-fated cruise with the Middle Passage Monument Project. You can hear her story and others at stoop storytelling dot com.

So many inspiring activities this weekend! If drumlines get your blood pumping, don’t miss the Baltimore Christian Warriors 30th Anniversary. They’re hosting the Tri-state Drumline Competition and Showcase tomorrow at Baltimore City Community College, 2901 Liberty Heights Avenue. It starts at noon, tickets at the door.

And at the Community College of Baltimore County in Catonsville, you can attend the Maryland Humanities 2018 Chautauqua, titled: ‘Seeking Justice.’ Actors dressed as historic figures describe their character’s contribution to the pursuit of justice: Frederick Douglass at 7 pm tonight, Eleanor Roosevelt at 7 pm tomorrow and Thurgood Marshall at 7 pm Sunday -- all at the Center for the Arts Theatre, 800 S. Rolling Road.

In the first half of the 19th century, wealthy Baltimore was in love with art, especially art from Europe. Art historian Stanley Mazaroff tells of George A. Lucas, the son of one upscale family who was so enamored that just before the Civil War he moved to Paris and built a new kind of career -- as a transatlantic agent advising prosperous American collectors.

Mazaroff's account of George Lucas' life as an art agent and collector is "A Paris Life, A Baltimore Treasure". He’s speaking about it next Thursday evening, July 19 at 7 pm at the Ivy Bookstore on Falls road.

Larry Canner/JHU

About two million people in the U.S. have lost an arm, a hand, a leg or other limb. Many opt to use a prosthesis -- a fabricated upper or lower limb. Luke Osborn, a graduate student in biomedical engineering at Johns Hopkins University, tells us about an electronic skin that can create the sensation of touch for the user of an upper-limb prosthesis. And George Levay, a research participant who lost his arms to meningitis, describes what it was like using the electronic skin on his prosthetic hand.

Amy Webb / Future Today Institute

Summer means a bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables. But when you choose those juicy plums or ripe tomatoes from your favorite grocery produce section … do you stop to question where and how they were grown? Amy Webb, founder of the ‘Future Today Institute’, has some answers. She talks about the future of farming, from genetic editing to collaborative robots to urban indoor warehouse farms. She also offers some perspective about the sci-fi feel of agricultural technology developments.

Webb suggests the online magazine, Modern Farmer, as a good, accessible source to stay informed on future farming developments.

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