Lennox Mclendon / AP


An archive recording of the WPSU Jazz Show (from home edition) as broadcast on July 30, 2021, and hosted by Greg Petersen, sitting in for the vacationing Tom Beebee.

In the first hour, hear Count Basie, David Sanborn, Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers, Betty Carter, Dream Session ’96, Ella Fitzgerald, Oscar Peterson, and more.

In the second hour, hear Paul Desmond & Gerry Mulligan, Paul Seaforth, Milt Jackson with Joe Williams, Kenny Barron, Louis Armstrong & Oscar Peterson, The BBC Big Band, Billie Holiday, and more.

A kiosk with writing that reads "the city of DuBois"


Voters in the city of DuBois and nearby Sandy Township will likely get to decide whether to consolidate the two municipalities in November. A petition that will present the choice to voters was submitted to the Clearfield County Elections Office on Tuesday.

In June, Sandy Township’s Board of Supervisors voted four to one against looking into a consolidation plan. They said a survey they conducted did not show enough support to pursue a merger with DuBois. 

Portrait of Aimee Burns
Photo courtesy of Aimee Burns

More people have felt anxious and isolated during the pandemic. At the same time, mental health services have been harder to access.


Aimee Burns, executive director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness in Blair County, talked with WPSU's Min Xian about COVID-19’s impacts on the mental health care system and shared her personal story of living with mental illness.


Here’s their interview:

Min Xian: Welcome to Take Note on WPSU. I’m Min Xian.

Stacey Horrocks, seen here at her home in Boyertown, applied for rent relief in March, but her application stalled in April when Berks County began trying to contact her landlord, Rose Gross.
JOSE F. MORENO / Philadelphia Inquirer

Spotlight PA is an independent, nonpartisan newsroom powered by The Philadelphia Inquirer in partnership with PennLive/The Patriot-News, TribLIVE/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, and WITF Public Media. Sign up for our free newsletters.

Matt Rourke / Associated Press

A 2017 Pennsylvania law that lets residents buy consumer-grade fireworks has some local communities worried about their safety, including Bellefonte in Centre County, which plans to step up enforcement.

The state passed the law, which lets Pennsylvanians buy fireworks. It also brings in money for the state, with a total 18% tax on firework sales.

Bellefonte Mayor Tom Wilson said fireworks complaints are at a high this summer.

WPSU’s Health Minute is a collaboration with Penn State’s College of Nursing. 


WPSU Blues Archive - July 24, 2021

Jul 24, 2021
Luiz C. Ribeiro / Invision/AP

An archive recording of the WPSU Blues show as aired on July 24, 2021 and hosted by Adam McMillen. 

In the first hour, hear tracks from Ollabelle, Paul Pena, Eric Clapton, Soledad Brothers, Alex Bradford, Eddie Hinton, The Blasters, Charley Crockett, The James Hunter Six, and more.

In the second hour, hear Ken Swartz & The Palace of Sin, Nina Simone, Link Wray, Junior Wells, Paola Nutini, T Bone Burnett, Mamie Smith, Alvin Robinson, Fantastic Negrito, Saun & Starr, and more.  

Courtesy of Nyla Holland

On this episode of Take Note, we talk with Nyla Holland, an active member of the 3/20 Coalition in State College and the former president of Penn State's Black Caucus. She spent her four years at Penn State as an activist at the university and the local community. In the fall, she will continue her education at Penn State in pursuit of a master's degree in public policy where she'll continue as an activist.

Here is the interview:

Stephanie Swindle / Penn State School of Music

The Penn's Woods Music Festival is a decades-long tradition: a professional festival held each year in June on Penn State’s University Park Campus. Like so many events, it was cancelled in 2020 due to the pandemic. And it couldn’t be held in June this year, either, due to pandemic restrictions.  But at the end of June, hope was suddenly on the horizon.

“We had been looking at all the restrictions starting to lift,” said Russell Bloom, assistant director of Penn State’s School of Music. 

Bloom said Penn State’s School of Music put all kinds of options on the table.

WPSU Jazz Archive - July 23, 2021

Jul 23, 2021
Matt Sayles / AP

An archive recording of the WPSU Jazz Show as broadcast on July 23, 2021 and hosted by Rana Glick. 

In the first hour, hear the Billy Harper Quintet, Angelique Kidjo with Carlos Santana & Josh Groban, J+1, Archie Sheep & Dus, and more.

In the second hour, hear Chuck Magione, Esperanza Spalding, Germaine Bazzie, Dan Gibson’s Solitudes, and more.

At first glance, “When You Wonder, You’re Learning” by Gregg Behr and Ryan Rydzewski is a standard text on family-based conflict management and resolution. But upon reading the first page, you’ll realize that this book is also a letter of appreciation to Fred Rogers and the Neighborhood he built through a television screen.

I grew up with Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. I was an inconsistent viewer, but a Neighbor all the same. Reading this book, I was struck by how intentional Rogers was in making sure viewers felt safe enough to learn, to feel, and to fail.

Pa. Supreme Court Deals Blow To Outdated Child Sexual Abuse Claims

Jul 21, 2021
Matt Rourke / Associated Press

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania's high court has dealt a blow to victims of child sexual abuse who are trying to revive their otherwise outdated claims.

The court on Wednesday tossed a lawsuit by a woman whose earlier legal victory had given hope to other victims who sued in the wake of a landmark report that documented decades of child molestation within the Catholic church in Pennsylvania.

Students outside of State College Area High School on Jan. 8, 2018.
Min Xian / WPSU

Starting this fall, students and staff in the State College Area School District who have been vaccinated for COVID-19 will not have to wear masks inside, while those who have not been vaccinated will, under a plan approved by the school board Monday night.


The 7-2 vote followed a lengthy discussion by the board and a contentious public comment period, with some parents booing during the meeting. Other parents spoke in support of the board, with some asking the district to go further and require everyone to wear a mask.


Pennsylvania’s 2022 U.S. Senate race: What we know so far

Jul 20, 2021
The race is on in Pennsylvania for U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey's open seat, with a large field of interested candidates and lots of money in the mix.
JOSE F. MORENO / Philadelphia Inquirer

Spotlight PA is an independent, non-partisan newsroom powered by The Philadelphia Inquirer in partnership with PennLive/The Patriot-News, TribLIVE/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, and WITF Public Media. Sign up for our free newsletters.

Matt DiSanto / WPSU

U.S. Senate candidate Jeff Bartos visited Penn State’s Berkey Creamery Monday as part of his 12-day tour around Pennsylvania’s 67 counties.

With a scoop of mint chocolate-chip ice cream in hand, Bartos took a moment to rest during his sixth pitstop of the day. He says that’s easy to do when you’re out in central Pennsylvania.

“What stands out more than anything is the beauty of the region, obviously the amazing history and the great people,” said Bartos, a Berks County native. “It’s kind of quintessentially ‘Pennsylvania.’”

WPSU’s Health Minute is a collaboration with Penn State’s College of Nursing. 


Evan Agostini / Invision/AP

An archive recording of the WPSU Blues show as aired on July 17, 2021 and hosted by Max Spiegel.

In the first hour, hear tracks from Golden Gate Quartet, Taj Mahal, Bob Dylan, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Mississippi John Hurt, Hazmat Modine, Devil In A Woodpile, The Black Keys, Leo Kottke, North Mississippi Allstars, Ray Charles, David Bromberg, and more.

In the second hour, hear Etta James, Paul Geremia, Izzy & Chris, Elizabeth Cotten, Paul Simon, Catfish Keith, John Cephas, J.J. Cale, Greg Brown, John Long, Tom Hanway & Vassar Clements, and more.  

Amy Harris / Invision/AP

An archive recording of the WPSU Jazz Show (from home edition) as broadcast on July 16, 2021, and hosted by Greg Petersen. This show features jazz singers. 

In the first hour, hear Johnny Mercer with Paul Weston and His Orchestra, Jon Hendricks, Joni Mitchell, k.d. lang, Lady Gaga, Louis Armstrong, Maceo Parker, John Pizzarelli, Michael Bublé with Nellie Frutato, The Mills Brothers, Diana Krall, Harry Connick, Jr., Tony Bennett, and more.

Scott Weidensaul holding a snowy owl
Chris DeSorbo

Scott Weidensaul is a naturalist and writer, the author of about 30 books, including one out in March of this year, “A World on the Wing: The Global Odyssey of Migratory Birds.” In the book, Weidensaul takes readers across the word to see the incredible feats of migrating birds. We learn that some birds travel thousands of miles at a time and many of them make those treks in the darkness of night. Weidensaul also writes about the added challenges birds are facing from loss of habitat and climate change.

Old Main

The Penn State Board of Trustees approved a salary increase for university employees on Thursday. An increase in tuition rates for students will also take effect.

A 2% general salary increase will take effect for faculty and staff for the 2021-2022 fiscal year, retroactive to July 1, for a total of $23.7 million. $3.8 million will be used for contractual increases and promotions.

Last year there were no salary increases due to the pandemic.

Old Main, the administration building, on Penn State's University Park campus
Min Xian / WPSU

As Penn State continues to encourage — not require — students and employees to get vaccinated for COVID-19 before the fall semester, one factor it has to contend with is politics.


Democratic Governor Tom Wolf recently vetoed Republican-backed legislation that, among other things, would have prohibited universities and colleges that get state funding from requiring vaccines.


Students walk on Lock Haven University campus
Min Xian / WPSU

Six of Pennsylvania’s 14 state-owned universities will be consolidated into two new institutions under a unanimous vote Wednesday by the State System of Higher Education’s governing board.

Matt DiSanto / WPSU

Free parking at Penn State’s Arboretum is coming to an end as the university begins building the new Palmer Museum of Art this summer.

Beginning July 19, free visitor parking will no longer be available at the Arboretum’s parking lot along Bigler Road. Instead, guests are asked to park across the street in a paid lot near the Lewis Katz Building.

A gate on the campus of Lock Haven University
Min Xian / WPSU

Update at 3:13 p.m. Wednesday, July 14: The PASSHE Board of Governors unanimously voted to approve the integration plan.  


The Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education is expected to vote on its plan to merge six state-owned universities into two institutions as soon as Wednesday, despite questions that critics of the plan say remain unanswered. 

In Performance at Penn State is a monthly hour-long program that showcases performances from Penn State's School of Music. This month, hear a sonata in B-flat by Johann David Heinichen and the Piano Trio No. 2 in C by Johannes Brahms, both from the 2018 Penns Woods Music Festival; and the Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso by Camille Saint-Sens, played by the Penn State Philharmonic, Gerardo Edelstein, conducting, with Alma Bulibekova, a winner of Penn State’s concerto competition.


Slot machines could be part of a proposed casino.
Associated Press

Members of the public will have a chance to weigh in on the casino a company wants to run in the Nittany Mall, in College Township, Centre County, during a hearing the state Gaming Control Board has scheduled for 4 p.m. Aug. 16 at the Penn Stater Conference Center.

In 2017, municipalities in Pennsylvania could decide whether they wanted to allow mini-casinos in their borders. College Township did not opt out.

WPSU’s Health Minute is a collaboration with Penn State’s College of Nursing.

The benefits of cultivating a connection with the natural environment grow over time. Later in life, this connection can be a source of strength as age-related challenges emerge.

Research shows nature can be a source of joy and relaxation. It can nurture mental and emotional health, and provide comfort in times of stress or recovery. Nature can elicit a sense of freedom and openness, and serve as an ideal setting for reflecting on life while preparing for the journey ahead.

Matt DiSanto / WPSU

Governor Tom Wolf visited Penn State Monday to celebrate Pennsylvania’s new law allowing college athletes to get paid for endorsements and sponsorships.

High up in Beaver Stadium’s club level, Wolf recognized legislation that lets student-athletes profit from the use of their name, image, and likeness – better known as NIL. Wolf said the new policy will help athletes finally earn their fair share.

John Davisson / Invision/AP

An archive recording of the WPSU Blues show as aired on July 10, 2021 and hosted by Max Spiegel. 

In the first hour, hear tracks from Led Zeppelin, Ry Cooder, Taj Mahal, The Black Keys, The Dixie Hummingbirds, The White Stripes, Michael Hurley, Canned Heat, Sen Jorge, Charley Patton, The Deslondes, Mississippi John Hurt, and more.

In the second hour, hear Rev. Horton Heat, Dan Auerbach, North Mississippi Allstars, Buddy Guy, Corky Siegel, Cody ChesnuTT, Erin McKeown, Charlie Louvin, Mose Allison, and more.  

The pandemic has been challenging for many artists. On this episode of Take Note we talked with Joy Ike, a full time singer-songwriter from Philadelphia, about how she's made music during quarantine.

For just over a decade, Joy has been traveling the country doing house concerts and performing in festivals. But during shutdowns, Joy had to adapt to creating music in a new way. That included producing a whole song and music video from her apartment.

And now, she is helping other artists grow.  

Check out her music here.