Community Voices

Madison Men's Choir Makes Music Through Prison Walls

Jan 10, 2016
Becca Schall / Courtesy of Cathy Roma/UBUNTU

UBUNTU choir is a group of men who are prisoners at the Madison Correctional Institution in London, a few minutes outside Columbus. The choir’s been recording its first album—and one prisoner is the composer of many of the songs. Culture Couch took a visit to find out about the process of making music with people in prison.

 

The Santa Heist: Why Kids (And Adults) Go Wild About Santa Claus

Dec 24, 2015
Steve Haws, aka Santa Claus, has been taking toy orders from kids for decades. Here he is with Finn Reynolds.
Jason Reynolds / WYSO

I was Christmas shopping with my five year old when it hit me—something I hadn’t thought about in a long time. When I was around his age, I tried to rob Santa Claus.

 

My best friend and I convinced our parents to let us have a sleepover on Christmas Eve, then we took turns standing on his bed, holding a metal detector up to the ceiling. It was a simple plan. When Santa's sled landed on the roof, its rails would set off the detector and we'd sneak downstairs to steal his bag of goodies.

 

Prison
Foreverdigital

WYSO has started a radio class at Dayton Correctional Institution (DCI), a women's prison on the west side of Dayton. Our Community Voices courses teach people to tell their own stories; this one does that with people who are incarcerated at one of just three women's prisons in the state.

Here's some of the audio we've already produced at DCI: 

The Musical Legacy of Paul Arnold

Feb 13, 2015

Paul Arnold would have been 83 years old this month. He grew up in Dayton's Edgemont District and sang gospel at the neighborhood Baptist church. In the 1950s, Arnold became a founding member and lead singer of the Gospelaires, and by the 60s, the group had achieved acclaim for its international performances.  Arnold died in 2006.

Dayton Goes 3D: Community Voices Tours Doppelganger Laboratories And Proto BuildBar

Dec 18, 2014
Jason Reynolds / WYSO

3D printing isn’t the future—it’s now. In the last year and a half, four new 3D printing services have opened in the Miami Valley, and the most recent additions are each trying out something new.

A “maker space” with beer

The Proto BuildBar on First Street in downtown Dayton is perhaps overly hipster: the employees are wearing gas station attendant shirts and retro eyeglasses, and the music is 90’s indie rock. But Proto BuildBar is more than a hip hangout. If you’re a techie, it could be a dream come true. They have a dozen 3D printers and rows of workbenches with soldering guns and magnifying glasses.

“We are the world’s first build bar,” says General Manager Alex Todd. “We are a small scale coffee shop and bar housed together with a 3D print and maker space. It’s kind of a cool concept. You can come in and rent time on 3D printers.”

Students from Ponitz Career Technology Center pictured with WYSO's Basim Blunt on the students' first visit to the WYSO studios for youth radio classes that turned into Dayton Youth Radio.
Juliet Fromholt / WYSO

This fall, WYSO expanded its community voices radio production training to include high school students at David H. Ponitz Career Technology Center and founded Dayton Youth Radio.

Revisiting Occupy Dayton

Sep 17, 2014
Hannah-Willow Shows / Flickr Creative Commons

In September, 2011, thousands of protestors gathered in Zucotti Park near Wall Street in New York City. Many thought the protest would only last a few days, but as videos of mass arrests and police brutality went viral, the situation quickly escalated and soon broadened. Community Voices producer, the late Kyle Pitzer revisits Occupy Dayton.

Nancy Horlacher looks through her collection of frequently asked questions in the Local History Room at the Dayton Metro Library. "Gem City of Ohio: Exact origin unknown."
Lauren Shows / WYSO

“Gem City” — that phrase should sound familiar to most people in the Miami Valley.

A quick glance into the Yellow Pages, or a quick Google search, reveals a list of several dozen Dayton-area groups and businesses that use the name. But what’s that nickname for Dayton all about? Two WYSO listeners, Dot Schnering and Gary Honnert, recently asked the question:

Why do they call Dayton the Gem City?

Connecting Across Cultural Lines With Ham Radio

Sep 3, 2014
Nite_Owl / Flickr Creative Commons

Amateur radio is a kind of non-commercial broadcasting.  Also known as ham radio, the people who do it are known as hams. It's a popular hobby; there are more than 2 million ham radio clubs around the world, and more than a dozen here in southwest Ohio.

Community Voices producer Charlene Edwards, a rookie ham, says every operator has a call sign they use to identify themselves and she has this story about the colorblind quality of ham radio broadcasting.

A Search For Water

Jul 14, 2014
Renee Wilde / WYSO

We notice things done by hand, they stand out. And this spring and summer we have been visiting people who work with their hands; we heard from a Thatcher and two arborists.  Today Community Voices producer Renee Wilde has another story of a person who uses their hands in an unusual way.

Do you know what a water witch is? Some say it's a myth; others don't know.  But if you guessed that a water witch is one of those sticks that you find water with, that’s pretty close. 

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