Stacey Lee writes historical fiction for young adults. Her novel, Under A Painted Sky, was the Centre County Reads selection this year. It follows a Chinese girl and a runaway slave as they seek freedom on the Oregon Trail — masquerading as boys. Lee discussed the book, writing diverse characters and growing up Asian-American with WPSU's Eleanor Klibanoff at the Nittany Lion Inn in March. 

Hear questions from the audience below. 

This I Believe: I Believe In Switching Seats

May 25, 2017
Lilly Caldwell
Emily Reddy / WPSU

I believe in switching seats.

When I was in 5th grade I was great at switching seats. I sat at different lunch tables every day. I hung out with people older than me. I hung out with people my age. I had tons of friends. But I didn’t have any I was super close with. That all changed when I reached 6th grade. Starting the second semester, I was only at one lunch table; I only sat in one seat. I was part of something called "Super Squad."

photo: courtesy of B.J. Leidermann

You’ve heard the name B.J. Leidermann many times during the credits at the end of public radio shows. . And if you’re a devoted WPSU listener, you probably hear his music every day.  After a decades-long career as a composer and performer, Leidermann has finally released his first album, titled "BJ." WPSU’s Kristine Allen spoke with him from his home in Asheville, North Carolina.

Keith Srakocic / AP Photo

 

A giant billboard went up at the intersection of Centre Avenue and Crawford Street in Pittsburgh’s Hill District neighborhood in 1960. It read, “No Development Beyond This Point.”

On a recent morning, Carl Redwood stood in the same spot. He chairs the board of directors for the Hill District Consensus Group, a neighborhood planning organization. The intersection is called Freedom Corner, a critical gathering point during the Civil Rights era.

Dave Arcari / catfishkeith.com

An archive recording of the WPSU Blues Show as broadcast on May 20, 2017, and hosted by Max Spiegel. 

In the first hour, hear tracks from Muddy Waters, The Black Keys, Hazmat Modine, Siegel-Schwall, Leo Kottke and Mike Gordon, Al King, Doc and Merle Watson, Pacific Gas & Electric, Frank Zappa, The Band and more.

In hour two, hear Bukka White, James Brown, Mississippi John Hurt, The Yardbirds. Rev. Gary Davis, Albert King & Stevie Ray Vaughn, Bob Dylan, Jorma Kaukonen, Corey Harris, Catfish Keith and more.   

WPSU Jazz Archive - May 19, 2017

May 22, 2017
Larry Philpot / Creative Commons

An archive edition of the WPSU Jazz show as broadcast on May 19, 2017, hosted by Greg Halpin. 

The first hour of the program features all new jazz releases from The Preservation Jazz Hall Band, David Weiss and Point of Departure, Christian Sands, Randy Ingram, John Stein, Erin Parks and Ben Street and Billy Hart, Beggie Adair, Jason Anick, and more.

In the second hour, it’s classics, from McCoy Tyner, Ramsey Lewis, The Revolutionary Snake Ensemble, Wynton Kelly, Olivier Collette, Macy Gray, Postmodern Jukebox, John Coltrane and more.  

Map of Pennsylvania's current U.S. Congressional Districts
Fair Districts PA

In Pennsylvania, and around the country, voters don't choose their elected officials; instead, politicians choose their voters.  The process that allows politicians to redraw district boundaries in their political favor is known as gerrymandering--and angry voters nationwide are demanding change.  What will it take to end gerrymandering?  And what's at stake?  Steve Zarit is a distinguished professor emeritus at Penn State and coordinator of the Centre County branch of Fair Districts PA.  Debbie Trudeau is a member of the Centre County leadership team for Fair Districts PA.

milk jug sign in a field
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Where University Drive cuts across the southern edge of State College, the difference between the north and south sides of the road is dramatic. The north side is lined by houses, the State College Friends School and Foxdale Village. To the south is farmland, with mountains beyond.

Deb Nardone walked across the farmland to Slab Cabin Run, which this conservation initiative is named after. Nardone is the executive director of ClearWater Conservancy.

BookMark: "What She Was Saying" By Marjorie Maddox

May 18, 2017

There are over 7 billion people on the planet right now and every single one of them is the protagonist of their own story. That’s the premise of Marjorie Maddox’s new short story collection, titled “What She Was Saying.” Each of the 35 stories peers into the fractured lives of the people we pass every day. Some narratives drip nostalgia, others are sharp and bitter. But all of them are meant to reveal the experiences that make us unique.

Behind The Headlines: Pennsylvania's Opioid Epidemic Up Close

May 18, 2017

With an increasing number of opioid overdoses in Pennsylvania, attention from state and local officials is growing as well as public attention around the issue. In 2015, there were more than 3,500 drug related overdose deaths in the state, which marked a sharp increase from the previous year. In Philadelphia, 900 people died as a result of overdoses, which is three times the number of homicide victims.

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NPR Stories

Shtum is a Yiddish word that means silence. It's also the title of a novel that centers around three generations of men who get thrown together in a small space and can't talk to each other. Jonah, the little boy, has the best reason: He's profoundly autistic and can't speak. The story has a personal resonance for author Jem Lester, who says that while he bears no resemblance to the father in Shtum, Jonah's story has parallels to his own son.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Southern Rocker Gregg Allman Dies At 69

Gregg Allman, founding member of the Allman Brothers Band, has died at the age of 69. Allman's manager, Michael Lehman, told NPR News Allman had suffered a recurrruence of liver cancer five years ago, and died from complications of the disease. A statement on the southern rock musician's website reads, "Gregory LeNoir Allman December 8, 1947 – May 27, 2017 "It is with deep sadness that we announce that Gregg Allman, a founding member of The Allman Brothers Band, passed away peacefully at his...

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Foreign Policy Thinker Zbigniew Brzezinski Dies At 89

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Report: Kushner Discussed Setting Up Secret Communications With Russia

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In A President's First 100 Days, The News Is Rarely Good

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Love, Money And Betrayal Make For Great Storytelling In 'The Heirs'

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Education Department Faces Deep Cuts; DeVos Faces Tough Questions

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Two Scientists, Two Different Approaches To Saving Bees From Poison Dust

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Former High School Dropout Joins Peace Corps, Helps New Dropouts

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How A Gene Editing Tool Went From Labs To A Middle-School Classroom

On a Saturday afternoon, 10 students gather at Genspace, a community lab in Brooklyn, to learn how to edit genes. There's a recent graduate with a master's in plant biology, a high school student who started a synthetic biology club, a medical student, an eighth grader, and someone who works in pharmaceutical advertising. "This is so cool to learn about; I hadn't studied biology since like ninth grade," says Ruthie Nachmany, one of the class participants. She had studied anthropology, visual...

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In A Lost Concert, Jaco Pastorius Sounded The Rhythm Of The City

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In Southern India, The Spirit Of Ramadan Is Served In A Bowl Of Porridge

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White Supremacist Charged With Killing 2 In Portland, Ore., Knife Attack

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Hear Carly Rae Jepsen's Triumphant New Song, 'Cut To The Feeling'

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As Brains Mature, More Robust Information Networks Boost Self-Control

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WPSU commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War.

Tell us about your experiences during that divisive time. Share your memories and commentary, in your own words, photos, video or audio, at the link below.

Get The New Free WPSU App!

Take public media anywhere you go with the WPSU mobile app available for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android and Amazon devices.

It's Folk Season

Now that the Metropolitain Opera radio season has ended, The Folk Show is back on WPSU-FM Saturday afternoons from 1-5pm, now through the end of November.

Keystone Crossroads: Rust or Revival? explores the urgent challenges pressing upon Pennsylvania's cities. WPSU is a contributing station.

WPSU Podcasts

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Turn Your Old Car into Public Radio!

Got an old car? The Car Talk Vehicle Donation Program will take it off your hands & turn it into great public radio on WPSU-FM. To donate your car, visit the link below or call 1-866-789-8627. Thanks!

Public Radio for Central & Northern Pennsylvania

Hear WPSU-FM on the radio at the frequencies listed above, or stream WPSU-FM and our two HD channels right here by clicking the LISTEN LIVE button.

WPSU's Community Calendar

Find out what's happening in Central & Northern PA on WPSU's Community Calendar! Submit your group's event at least 2 weeks in advance, and you might hear it announced on WPSU-FM.

Add your voice!

Write an essay for WPSU's This I Believe or BookMark.

Reasons To Stay

In case you missed WPSU's Regional Murrow Award-winning series, "Reasons to Stay," which explores what keeps people in central Pa, check it out at the link below.

WPSU's Local Food Journey

Our Local Food Journey blog explores what it means to eat local in Central and Northern Pennsylvania.

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