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Valley View: The Case of the Spotted Lanternfly (Episode 50)

In southeastern Pennsylvania, the spotted lanternfly is all the rage. And the deluge is far from over. Here's the scoop on why this invasive species is different from the rest, and what scientists are doing to try to stop it. Are they really pests with nothing good to offer? Morning Call reporter Michelle Merlin has answers -- and more questions. We're also joined by Emelie Swackhamer, horticulture educator at the Penn State Extension. Valley View is a production of The Morning Call in...


Valley View: How a miracle saved Allentown's warming station (Episode 49)

Allentown's winter warming station for the homeless has been shuffled around among locations and organizations for the past 5 years. It almost had nowhere to go this winter. Then a miracle happened. Finally, some good news on Valley View this week. Special guests include Morning Call columnist Bill White; Bob Stevens, pastor of Zion's Liberty Bell United Church of Christ; and David Fagerstrom, CEO of the Greater Valley YMCA. Valley View is a production of The Morning Call in Allentown,...


Valley View: What's so great about grape stomping? (Episode 48)

You might think you know all there is to know about grape stomping -- it's something our ancestors did to make wine, and it lives on as a cultural spectacle at harvest festivals. But that's not the full story. Valley View host Kayla Dwyer was invited to take part in the sixth annual grape stomp at the Allentown Fair on Sunday, Sept. 2. Beforehand, she brushed up on some history. This episode answers some key questions: Is it sanitary? Why grape stomp with feet at all, when wine presses have...


Valley View: Opioids as a Community Crisis, Part Four (Episode 47)

As The Morning Call's health reporter Binghui Huang puts it, there are simply not a lot of places where separate healthcare entities come together to solve multiple problems. When it comes to the opioid epidemic, it's all about solving co-mingled hoards of problems, requiring a complicated coordination of resources and services. People at the front lines of the opioid crisis are facing it as such. But how can they work within a health system infrastructure that is so fragmented? "Treatment"...


Valley View: Woman shares her story of priest sex abuse in Pennsylvania (Episode 46)

Thousands of victims, hundreds of priests. But the Pennsylvania grand jury report only scratches the surface, investigators say. Juliann Bortz, one of the victims named in the report accusing 300 priests across six dioceses of child sex abuse, shares her story on Valley View this week. Then, a Morning Call reporter and editor describe the challenges behind reporting that story, and others, both immediately after the Boston Globe expose in 2002, and today. Valley View is a production of The...


Valley View: How has Musikfest stayed free for 35 years? (Episode 45)

Eleven days. More than 500 free performances on 17 stages. 35 years and running. How has Musikfest, billed by founding organization Artsquest as the largest free music festival in the country, managed to stay free all this time? Answers from our guests this week: Artsquest President and CEO Kassie Hilgert and Morning Call music writer John Moser. Valley View is a production of The Morning Call in Allentown, Pennsylvania, sponsored by the Lehigh Center for Clinical Research. Kayla Dwyer is...


Valley View: Police shooting sends shockwaves through the valley (Episode 44)

This week we’re taking you through what we know about the shooting death of Joseph Santos by a South Whitehall police officer, which happened on Hamilton Boulevard on July 28. And we ask a law enforcement trainer about the use of deadly force. Law enforcement is still investigating, as are we. Guests in this episode include Morning Call reporters Tom Shortell and Sarah Wojcik. Scanner audio is from Broadcastify. Valley View is a production of The Morning Call in Allentown, Pennsylvania,...


Valley View: A call to arms for area school districts (Episode 43)

Lehigh Valley school districts have heard the call: Enough talk. We need action. A Morning Call survey found tangible measures of increased security and officer trainings at area schools, with one district even implementing student IDs with computer chips. What is being accomplished, and does any of it go too far? Guest-host Harrison Cann, The Morning Call's news intern, talks with Michelle Merlin to break it down. Valley View is a production of The Morning Call in Allentown, Pennsylvania,...


Valley View: From Opioids to Cannabis (Episode 42)

The opioid epidemic casts a wide net of pain, and it includes those who use opioids but aren’t necessarily addicted. This week on Valley View: the story of a woman who has lived for decades with chronic pain, and why she turned to medical marijuana. Plus, an update on Pennsylvania's young medical marijuana program, which now has 50,000 patients registered. Guests include health reporter Binghui Huang and business reporter Andrew Wagaman. Valley View is a production of The Morning Call in...


Valley View: The Lehigh Valley story of family detention (Episode 41)

Audio and video recordings of children being taken from their parents at pop-up immigrant detention centers near the U.S.-Mexican border have drawn media frenzy and public outcry. But in Berks County, advocates have been speaking out for years. Outside Reading is a family detention center of a different kind: one of just three permanent shelters in the country. This week, a look at the Berks County Residential Center and its legal place in the battle over the border. Guests include Peter...


Valley View: How a traffic stop almost turned fatal (Episode 40)

It began as a routine traffic stop and ended with a "knock-down, drag-out" gunfight with state troopers along a busy Pennsylvania highway. In the attempted murder trial of Daniel K. Clary, the man accused of nearly fatally wounding Corporal Seth Kelly in in the brawl, jurors had to decide: Was Clary a killer avoiding arrest, or was he a man who acted in fear for his life? Riley Yates, The Morning Call's Northampton County courts reporter, explains. Valley View is a podcast by The Morning...


Valley View: Seeking answers behind the Bucks County bombings(Episode 39)

Early-morning explosions have been rattling Bucks County for the past three months, straining police resources and leaving residents of this quiet country bewildered. This week on Valley View, some answers in the mystery behind the Upper Bucks Bomber. Plus, a hand surgeon's precaution for the Fourth of July, in light of the new Pennsylvania law that allows residents to purchase consumer-grade fireworks. Guests include Harrison Cann, The Morning Call's news intern; and Laurie Mason Schroeder,...


Valley View: Opioids as a community crisis, part three (Episode 38)

In the third roundtable discussion of The Morning Call's yearlong series on the opioid crisis, five public health leaders -- from the local to the state level -- talk about the obstacles that keep them from preventing overdose deaths and effectively distributing life-saving medication. Has Pennsylvania's disaster declaration achieved real change? Are public health campaigns reaching those who need to hear it the most? Why are some harm reduction approaches - like needle exchange programs and...


Valley View: A tale of three cities' town-and-gown tensions (Episode 37)

A group of Easton residents is suing the city government for approving zoning changes that would allow Lafayette College to expand student housing farther into town. It's the tipping point of Easton's own dance with town-and-gown tensions -- a delicate dance common to towns reckoning with growth pressures from their anchor institutions. This week: A tale of three cities -- Allentown, Bethlehem and Easton. We visit each to glance at the relationships between the local population and the...


Valley View: Of Mice and Ticks (Episode 36)

When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention sounded the alarm last month -- saying that the number of people getting diseases transmitted by mosquito, tick and flea bites has more than tripled in the United States since 2004 -- we decided to see what Muhlenberg College Biology Professor Marten Edwards had to say. He's been involved in a longterm study of the Lehigh Valley's tick population to better understand their size and disease-carrying proportion. Host Kayla Dwyer went out on a...


Valley View: What happened with Easton's wrestling coach? (Episode 35)

On Saturday, March 10, a wrestler from Easton Area High School failed to make weight at a state wrestling tournament in Hershey Pennsylvania, disqualifying him from any awards or advancement. The following Wednesday, Coach Jamarr Billman was informed his contract would not be renewed. Two days later, the school administration reversed its decision. This week on Valley View, we look at the backstory -- including what came to light after the school requested an investigation into what actually...


Valley View: A new era for the nation's oldest bookstore (Episode 34)

The Moravian Book Shop in historic downtown Bethlehem, the nation's oldest bookstore, has been independently owned and managed by the Moravian Church since its founding in 1745. But that is about to change. In this episode: A history of the shop, and what will happen to it with the sale to Moravian College, who has selected Barnes and Noble to manage the operation. Guests include Moravian College President Bryon Grigsby; Richard Santee, president of the Moravian Book Shop board; and Leo...


Valley View: Capturing the coveted youth vote (Episode 33)

Since the 2016 presidential election, and especially since the mass shooting at Marjory Stone Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, young potential voters have been the subject of intense focus: While many high school students have been leading walkouts and encouraging their peers to register, national organizers have mobilized in Pennsylvania by holding registration drives and knocking on doors. But is it working? We dug up some data to find out. Here to explain is Morning Call...


Valley View: Unsealed adoption records give new meaning to Mothers' Day (Episode 32)

Mothers' Day has new meaning for these three families. This episode of Valley View tells the stories of how a new Pennsylvania law launched three men, adopted as children, on journeys to find their birth parents and learn about their origins, more than 50 years later. Guests include Marcus and Scott Lingenfelter, PA Rep. Kerry Benninghoff and Morning Call court reporter Laurie Mason Schroeder. Music in this episode is by Huw Jones, Sam Brown, George Beck and Paul Lawler. Valley View is a...


Valley View: Stirring the pot (Episode 31)

All three of the Lehigh Valley's major cities have had marijuana decriminalization ordinances on the table in the last two months. But they would join six other Pennsylvania cities going against state and federal law, which still considers possession of small amounts of marijuana a misdemeanor charge -- a mark on one's criminal record. These ordinances propose to lessen the penalty to that of a traffic ticket: a summary offense. This conflict leaves many questions to be answered. Here to do...