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Valley 101

News & Politics Podcasts

Whether you're a longtime Arizona resident or a newcomer, chances are there's something you've always wondered about the Valley. From The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com comes Valley 101, a weekly podcast where our journalists find answers to your questions about metro Phoenix. From silly to serious, you tell us what to investigate. You can submit questions at valley101podcast.azcentral.com or reach us on Twitter @Valley101pod.

Whether you're a longtime Arizona resident or a newcomer, chances are there's something you've always wondered about the Valley. From The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com comes Valley 101, a weekly podcast where our journalists find answers to your questions about metro Phoenix. From silly to serious, you tell us what to investigate. You can submit questions at valley101podcast.azcentral.com or reach us on Twitter @Valley101pod.

Location:

United States

Description:

Whether you're a longtime Arizona resident or a newcomer, chances are there's something you've always wondered about the Valley. From The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com comes Valley 101, a weekly podcast where our journalists find answers to your questions about metro Phoenix. From silly to serious, you tell us what to investigate. You can submit questions at valley101podcast.azcentral.com or reach us on Twitter @Valley101pod.

Language:

English

Contact:

602-444-8626


Episodes

Why are the streets downtown Phoenix named after United States Presidents?

4/12/2021
If you drive downtown Phoenix, it's likely you have turned down Van Buren Street, Roosevelt Road or another roadway named after a President. Phoenix famously has a grid system for its roads. Roads running North to South are numbered and roads running East to West are named streets. But one of our listeners asked why the streets in Central Phoenix are named after United States Presidents. They grew up on Portland Street, one street over from Roosevelt and always wanted to know why names of...

Duration:00:12:01

What is xeriscaping? And what are its benefits?

4/5/2021
Phoenix’s Desert Botanical Garden boasts more than a mile of native plants. Every step of the way, you’ll find plants that are uniquely attended for survival in the hot, dry desert. In fact, there are more than 200 plants that thrive in our desert climate. “One of my favorites is the chocolate flower, that spring or fall will grace your morning grand with the aroma of sweet chocolate,” said Kirti Mathura, the Smartscape Program Coordinator at the Maricopa County Cooperative Extension. Using...

Duration:00:12:18

What legacy did Betty and Jean Fairfax leave behind in Arizona?

3/29/2021
In honor of Women’s History Month, we're highlighting the story of two women who dedicated their careers and retirements to educational equity. Their names were Betty and Jean Fairfax. Those names might sound familiar. Betty H. Fairfax High School in the Phoenix Union District is named after the oldest sister. She’s the only former educator in the district with a high school named after her. How did that happen? What kind of legacy did the Fairfax sisters leave in Arizona? In this week's...

Duration:00:17:16

How did Arizona become a hub for the LDS Church?

3/22/2021
The Valley is full of transplants. Many of us moved here or our parents moved here, perhaps our grandparents. Then there's Candice Copple, whose family has been in Arizona for six generations. Copple's ancestors came to Arizona in the 1800s as a part of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Her great-great-great grandfather was Charles Innes Robson the 1st. He’s considered a founding father of Mesa in the East Valley. Charles came to Arizona with his father-in-law Francis Pomeroy...

Duration:00:15:47

Why aren't sirens used during dust storms?

3/15/2021
Dust storms can create a wall of dust that miles wide and thousands of feet high. When one hits, visibility can drop down to a quarter of a mile or less. When that happens, the local branch of the National Weather Service will send out a weather emergency alert. Odds are you've received one on your phone. Sirens, however, are not part of the messaging equation. It turns out there are a few reasons why sirens aren't used during dust storms. Part of it has to do with infrastructure. The other...

Duration:00:13:55

What's a vanity license plate? How many are on the road in Arizona?

3/8/2021
When you're on the road, odds are you'll see plenty of our standard Arizona license plates. You know, the ones with a purple saguaro and mountain under a blue and yellow sky. But you'll also see a fair number of plates that look different. Valley 101 listener Harold Lohner noticed this too. He asked why Arizona cars have so many vanity license plates? Is it more than other In this week's episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com, we're diving in the trend...

Duration:00:10:12

Why is recycling different city to city?

3/1/2021
When you go to recycle, what you can put in your bin depends on a few different factors, including which municipality you live in. Different cities within the Valley have different rules. Why is that? Why is there not an across-the-board set of items you can and can’t recycle? In this episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com, we break down the reasons why where you live affects how and what you can recycle.

Duration:00:12:04

How did the Phoenix Bakery, one of the city's oldest buildings, end up at the Phoenix Zoo?

2/22/2021
The Phoenix Bakery was a downtown staple in the city’s earliest days. German immigrant Ed Eisele Sr. started working there in 1881, purchasing the shop at West Washington Street and Center Street (now Central Avenue) three years later. As the city grew, the bakery grew, leaving its original location in 1929. But the red-brick building that housed the original operation is still around today. There’s just one catch: it now resides at the Phoenix Zoo, miles away from its original location. How...

Duration:00:13:34

What's the story behind Phoenix Sky Harbor's fly-in chapel?

2/15/2021
Before Las Vegas became known as the quickie wedding hotspot, people flew to Phoenix. Or at least that's what Phoenix's Junior Chamber of Commerce hoped for. The story dates back to 1937. The city had purchased Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport two years prior in 1935. Most states across the U.S. at this point had laws mandating a 3-day waiting period for couples wishing to wed. But Arizona didn't. Capitalizing on that lack of regulation, the airport built a chapel and advertised...

Duration:00:11:14

Who was Paul W. Litchfield and how did he help develop the West Valley?

2/8/2021
Today, the West Valley is home to 1.7 million people, according to data collected by the Western Maricopa Coalition. And it’s still growing. The coalition anticipates that over the next 25 years, 49.5% of the growth in Maricopa County will happen in the West Valley. That's vastly different from what it was like in the beginning of the 20th century. Before Arizona had towns like Avondale, Goodyear and Litchfield Park, the West Valley was barren. In this week's episode of Valley 101, a podcast...

Duration:00:16:11

Meet Richard E. Harris, the first Black reporter at The Arizona Republic

2/1/2021
In 1964, at the age of 51, Richard E. Harris became the first Black reporter at The Arizona Republic. His tenure came during a momentous and tumultuous period in our nation’s history. The year before, thousands were arrested while protesting segregation in Birmingham, Alabama. Among them was Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who would deliver his famed “I Have A Dream” speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial that same year. President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in 1963. The following...

Duration:00:26:49

How do you safely hike with dogs in Arizona?

1/25/2021
Winter in Arizona means peak hiking season. The weather is beautiful, the landscapes are breathtaking and, because of COVID-19, the fact that you can socially distance in the open air while getting in some exercise is an added perk. But if you take your dogs with you, there are some things you need to know. Maybe you’re new to the Valley and your transplant dog isn’t used to the desert terrain. But even if you’re a long-time resident, we’ve got some tips that you might not know. Consider...

Duration:00:15:24

What's the story behind Arizona's clever highway signs?

1/18/2021
There are the normal highway signs, ones that feature messages about travel times or road conditions. Then there are the funny ones. Ones that say things like, "Cut off? Don’t get bad blood. Shake it off” in reference to a Taylor Swift song. Or “Aggressive driving is the path to the dark side,” a nod to “Star Wars.” Arizona isn't unique in having signs like that. The trend started with the Iowa Department of Transportation, but Arizona Department of Transportation spokesperson Doug Pacey...

Duration:00:11:12

Is there a roller derby scene in Metro Phoenix?

1/11/2021
If you fell down the TikTok rabbit hole in 2020, odds are you probably came across one or two videos of people roller skating. It's a trend and hobby people took up to get outside during the pandemic. Valley 101 listener Antonio Moody is a teacher and heard about the exact same trend from his students. Some of them even thought of taking up roller derby. Moody asked the podcast team if there was a roller derby scene in Metro Phoenix. In this week's episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The...

Duration:00:20:20

Why does Phoenix have so few cemeteries?

1/4/2021
If you're a transplant to Arizona from New England, you may have been surprised at the seeming absence of cemeteries in the Phoenix area. After all, they feel like they're located at every corner in some northeastern states. That's how Christopher Bunce felt when he moved to the Valley in January of 2020. So he submitted a question to Valley 101, our newsroom podcast dedicated to helping Phoenicians better understand the place they call home. He asked, "Why does Phoenix have so few...

Duration:00:16:15

Happy holidays from Valley 101

12/28/2020
Hey Valley 101 listeners! We're taking a week off for a little rest and relaxation. Thank you for all of your questions this year! We look forward to answering more of them in 2021. Let us know what's on your mind at valley101podcast.azcentral.com or on Twitter @Valley101pod.

Duration:00:01:37

What's the story behind Arizona's largest Christmas tree?

12/21/2020
For almost 20 years, the Outlets at Anthem decorated with the largest Christmas tree in Arizona. This year is no exception. Their 70-foot tall white fir tree weighs four tons after it's decorated. How did that tradition start? And how does the mall know that its tree is the tallest in the state? Podcast editor Katie O'Connell found out during this week's episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com where we answer the questions you ask about metro Phoenix.

Duration:00:08:14

What makes Arizona such a hot spot for snowbirds?

12/14/2020
Every winter, Arizona sees an influx of retirees that from out of state. They come to enjoy our mild sunny winters and to escape their snowy season. Many come from Midwestern states like Minnesota or Wisconsin. But what brings snowbirds to Arizona specifically? And once they're here, what's their economic impact on the Valley? In this week's episode, producer Maritza Dominguez digs into this phenomenon.

Duration:00:11:08

What was Barry Goldwater's legacy in American politics?

12/7/2020
Barry Goldwater was a businessman, a Phoenix city councilman, and a prominent U.S. Senator from Arizona. He loved flying his plane across the state's diverse landscapes, and most would say he was a pretty good photographer. In the biggest race of his life, the 1964 presidential election, Goldwater lost significantly to Democrat Lyndon Baines Johnson. LBJ walked away with 61.1% of the popular vote and 486 electoral votes, leaving Goldwater with 52. So why has Goldwater been called the face of...

Duration:00:33:47

Why do houses in the Valley have pools, but not basements?

11/30/2020
Cooling off during the summer months is no easy feat. While people in other parts of the country may retreat to the cooler depths of their basements, that's not an option here in Phoenix. Rather, it's not a popular option. Instead, folks across the Valley take a dip in a pool to find some relief. But why is that? Why do houses here tend to have pools instead of basements? Podcast editor Katie O'Connell found out the answer in this week's episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona...

Duration:00:08:58