Around and About Chattanooga

Mondays & Wednesdays at 10 am & 8 pm

Chattanooga is transforming into one of the nation's most progressive, vibrant cities. Guests on the Around and About program discuss the cultural events, art communities, environmental initiatives and other creative forces that are helping continue this transformation.

The concert calendar airs every Thursday with a look at what's happening around town in the music scene.

Comments? Story ideas? You can contact the public affairs desk at (423) 425-2224.

    Dr. Rhea Seddon joins us to talk about what it was like to be one of NASA's first female astronauts. A Murfreesboro, Tennessee native, she was a medical resident who applied to NASA on a whim after hearing the organization was searching for women to join the space program. She was accepted, launched into orbit to conduct medical experiments, and found a family; she and her husband Hoot Gibson were the first married astronaut couple, and Dr. Seddon gave birth to the world's first "astrotot."

  UTC's Elder Scholars is a group of people 55 and older who meet on the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga campus once a month to learn about almost anything. Richard Winham talked to Jane Elmore, the co-chairperson fro the group, who told him that the older she gets, the better it gets.

  WUTC made history at the 2016 Chattanooga Film Festival with our first ever live remote, and that wasn't the only connection between WUTC 88.1 FM and the 4-day extravaganza.

Festival Director Chris Dortch and his father Chris Dortch Sr. host Connect The Dots, which airs the second Sunday of every month on WUTC, and Nooga.com journalist Josh Pickard, who joined us live, co-hosts Please Be Quiet Please, which airs every Saturday at 8 p.m.

The Money School is a free financial education day organized by Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise featuring financial professionals and nonprofits from around Chattanooga. This Saturday, April 9th, there will be 30 seminars for anyone over 13 years old on topics ranging from money management, budgeting and retirement planning to paying for college. Richard Winham talked to Jennifer Holder from Chattanooga Neighborhood Enterprise.

  Operation Song is a local program that pairs two veteran songwriters from Nashville with local military veterans coping with post-traumatic stress. The songwriters help the veterans turn their stories into songs. Richard Winham talked to Randall Scheil, a veteran of the Iraq war, about the song he wrote called “Three Ring Binder.”  

  In this interview, we’re talking about a place that’s home to some of Tennessee’s most important records. But workers at the building are running out of room for new documents. The Tennessee State Library & Archives is housed in a Nashville building that’s 60 years old, has accessibility issues and far too few public parking spaces. Officials are seeking $90 million for a new location.

   Former NPR journalist Barbara Bradley Hagerty joins us to talk about the myths and mystery of midlife: how prevalent is the so-called "midlife crisis," really? What can you do to ensure midlife is the best part of your life, even when facing job loss, divorce or other disruptive events? What factor is the biggest predictor of happiness in midlife? She researched all these topics for her latest book, Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife.

  You may remember James Mahon as the Irish reporter who used to be on WDEF, Chattanooga's News Channel 12.  Mahon's first book, Through Irish Eyes, chronicles his journey from an adoptee from communist Romania to being an Irish newsman in the Scenic City and more.

Here's an excerpt from his LinkedIn page:

Two of the artists whose work is currently on display at Reflections Gallery on Lee Highway are inspired by the Tennessee River, but their work couldn’t be more different. Susan Parks creates intricate patterns using tiny beads, while Jim Tucker creates expansive renderings of the water and the landscape along the river. Richard Winham talked to Jim Tucker and Susan Parks about their work.  

Emma Bell Miles lived on Walden's Ridge in the early 20th century, writing about nature, Appalachian culture, and the hardships women faced in mountain life.  The new collection The Common Lot and Other Stories is a compilation of her short fiction.

  Tennessee State Senator Jack Johnson has introduced a bill that would allow counselors to turn down potential clients if the client's goals, outcomes, or behavior conflicts with a sincerely held religious belief of the counselor.  Some say the bill is really about allowing counselors to discriminate against gays and lesbians, but Senator Johnson disagrees.

  Jerry Harris was drafted into the army when he was 19 years old in 1968. Within a few months he was in Viet Nam. From the moment he left the plane he was traumatized. Almost immediately he began developing an alter ego, a separate identity he called “Old Jerry.” He spent the rest of the year he was in Viet Nam sublimating his emotions. It’s only in the past decade that’s he been able to talk about his experience in the war.

  WUTC's Baris Gursakal recently became a United States citizen. He recorded his thoughts on the road and during his naturalization process for a piece about the process and meaning of becoming a citizen of the United States. 

"I can finally say that I truly belong to the place I’ve always felt like I belonged," Gursakal says. 

Michael Edward Miller

  Kenyon Wilson, an Associate Professor at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, has composed a musical tribute to the four Marines and one sailor who were killed during a July 16, 2015 shooting rampage at a Chattanooga naval reserve center.  Titled Five, it made its Chattanooga premiere on February 20th, 2016 during a performance by high school students playing in the 2016 Tri-State Honor Band.

Tennessee's Inclusionary Zoning Debate Intensifies

Feb 23, 2016

A bill to ban inclusionary zoning mandates, which require housing developers to make a certain number of new units affordable to low-income residents, has been introduced at the Tennessee State Legislature. WUTC’s Baris Gursakal spoke to Glen Casada, the Tennessee State Representative who sponsored the bill, as well as Chattanooga Organized For Action’s Jefferson Hodge, who has the opposite view—Hodge is a local advocate who sees value in inclusionary zoning.  They also spoke about the state of the housing market in Chattanooga.

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