Around and About Chattanooga

Wednesdays at 10 am & 8 pm

Around and About is a Chattanooga, Tennessee public radio show featuring news, interviews, and arts coverage. The show's host and reporters cover human-interest stories, Southern literature and current events & issues affecting the Tennessee Valley. 

Many guests are Chattanooga residents; others are national authors, experts and celebrities speaking on topics relevant to our community. The show is broadcast Wednesdays on WUTC NPR 88.1 FM, and the podcast is available here.

You can also subscribe to the podcast in iTunes.

Comments? Story ideas? Email us.

Three years ago, Jennifer Holder and Shawanda Mason Moore had $100 and a dream of bringing people together across the city. They started The Chattery, a nonprofit that offers classes in practically any subject someone is willing to teach. (Recently, Sean Phipps gave a short course on how to smoke a pipe properly.

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ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

A Chattanooga physician says the Affordable Care Act saved her life, and she’s challenging claims that the Senate can replace Obamacare with something better.

She’s the founder of the Chattanooga Sports Institute Center for Health, and an athlete who has finished seven Ironman competitions. But a sudden diagnosis slowed her down.

"Two and a half years ago," she says, "I was diagnosed with a very devastating, incurable, chronic vascular disease. I lost, almost lost my entire right leg to that. And now I’ve won the lottery of pre-existing conditions."

This summer the Signal Mountain Playhouse is mounting a production of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Many community theater groups may have found just building the sets for this show to be more than they wanted to handle, but the Signal Mountain Playhouse has a group of set designers who relish a challenge. Last summer they built a flying car for Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. This year they’ve built Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory.

“Are we really done with windows?” asks one of the characters in Courtney Maum’s new novel Touch.

He’s not talking about the operating system.

“I mean the architectural component that lets in light,” he says. “I mean, if I have a window, then—and this is really modern—I can just look through it and decide all by myself how to dress. I don’t need my home automation system to send me a text.”

For the past decade green|spaces, a non-profit company formed in 2007, has been trying to change the way Chattanoogans think about energy and energy consumption. Richard Winham talked to Dawn Hjelseth about the evolution of the company from its original role as a cheerleader to its current role as a developer of energy efficient housing in Chattanooga.

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Mimi Kennedy was destined for fame; as a child, she wanted to be an actress, and throughout her career, Broadway, the big screen and TV have served her well, making her face familiar to almost everyone. She's also an author and activist, and she's chatting with WUTC about her on- and off-stage roles in life, starting with her portrayal of Jan in both the original Broadway and National Touring productions of Grease.

Ashley Evans, Executive Director of the free health clinic Volunteers In Medicine, joins us to talk about a CVS Health Foundation Grant the clinic recently received to tackle a significant local health problem: diabetes. Also, we talk about the clinic's 2nd Annual Run for Health at Camp Jordan on June 3rd.

FROM A MEDIA RELEASE:

The song “Change” explains why people around the nation are leaving coins at the graves of soldiers, sailors, and other military service members. 

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Why don't people sing together anymore? During the Civil Rights movement, marchers used songs to bond with each other, but modern protest movements don't necessarily unite the same way. 

Dr. Ysaye Barnwell encourages people to put down their phones and make real-world connections through the power of group singing.

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Click this link to hear the winning story.  

WUTC FM 88.1, the National Public Radio affiliate licensed to the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, has been awarded a 2017 Edward R. Murrow Award for feature reporting.

Paula Poundstone

The red Lamborghini did little to improve Paula Poundstone's mood.

She says she was "feeling like a jerk" as she drove it through Los Angeles, a self-inflicted experiment to discover the secret to happiness.

"We live in a world where there's a lot of people who don't have homes," she says. "And who wants to drive by that in a Lamborghini? You know, I don't like walking by it to get on the train. So it just it creates a much more stark reminder of the inequities, you know, the imbalance in in our world. And you know normally I just walk down the street feeling helpless to help people."

She also tried camping, taekwondo, volunteering and other activities as she searched for deep personal satisfaction. Some became habits.

Lea Shell / StudentsDiscover.org

Kirk Englehardt takes us to Dr. DeAnna Beasely’s classroom, where the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga professor is convincing students to get down and dirty with ants. The tiny creatures can teach us a lot about urban landscapes’ effect on insect life and about our changing environment.

Jen Lewin's please-touch-the-art approach to public sculpture inspired The Pool. The globe-trotting installation will be on display in Chattanooga April 21-30, and by "on display," I mean that you're invited to jump and dance and boogie all over it and see how it reacts.

WUTC's Spring Membership Drive continues today, and when you donate, you could win an invite to a VIP meet-and-greet Friday with Paula Poundstone. She's performing at Track 29 in Chattanooga. Tune in to 88.1 for details.

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