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This Communique is a little different than normal. Host Gina Gambony isn't doing the interviewing; instead, WHQR's Program Director Bob Workmon interviews her about a show she's directing and performing in next week: Peter and the Wolf with puppets-shadow puppets to be exact.

    

This week’s inspection of the Cape Fear Memorial Bridge caused long delays and left many travelers wondering if more could be done. But the North Carolina Department of Transportation says some proposed solutions cause more problems than they fix. 

After Monday’s traffic congestion, some drivers requested onsite law enforcement officers to direct traffic. But NCDOT Division Engineer Karen Collette says that when that tactic has been employed in the past, it had adverse effects:

Nathan Sawaya/Adam Krell

The artwork of award-winning contemporary artist Nathan Sawaya may surprise you-and your children. Sawaya creates sculptures out of LEGOS, the same Legos parents have in couch cushions and under kitchen tables.

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Annual holiday trips into the western mountains of North Carolina wouldn't be complete without a stop in at the retro mountain attraction, located in Cherokee, NC – Santa’s Land – home of the famous Rudi-Coast.    

Commentator Shane Fernando is Director of the Humanities and Fine Arts Center at CFCC. He lives with his husband in Downtown Wilmington.

WHQR Commentaries don't necessarily reflect the views of WHQR Radio, its editorial staff, or its members.

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In April, a study from Castlight Health  reported that Wilmington, North Carolina has the highest rate of opioid abuse in the nation. This study was solely based on the abuse of prescription opioids, such as hydrocodones, oxycodones, morphine, fentanyl and the like, but heroin is the non-prescription player in the mix. New Hanover County has the second highest rate of heroin deaths in the state.

At WHQR, the Force is on our side. Our Jedi goes by the name of Jobie Sprinkle, AKA Jobie Wan Kenobi. Perhaps you noticed that we had some on-air technical difficulties over the past few weeks. The problem was that we needed a new audio vault, a piece of equipment that holds our recordings and puts them on the air (plus other things that regular people like us don't understand). Jobie Sprinkle is the one we called in to install the vault. He's been the Jedi engineer for WHQR for over 20 years.

Thanks to YOU we have reached our fundraising goal of $70,000 in under three weeks! 

As I predicted last week, we were at last able to get our new AudioVault computer automation system up and running – with thanks to a lot of people here, but especially consulting engineer Jobie Sprinkle of Charlotte, assisted by George Scheibner, Lan Nichols and others. The irony of systems like this is that ordinarily, listeners are aware of them only when they misbehave, as the old system did recently in a massive way. But the new system will give us extra capabilities for producing and distributing content in new ways, and provide extra backups in case of failure.

If you are a person with a disability, getting around town can be difficult. The same goes for folks who are older and have poor eyesight or other limitations. WAVE Transit currently provides transportation options to help these people who need them. And it's about to get better.

From the earliest days of European settlement, Wilmington and the Cape Fear region have been places of active military involvement. From the Revolution through the Civil War, from liberty ships in World War II to the relocation of the Battleship North Carolina, this area has seen its share and more of events that have shaped the military history of our country. In fact, there is a movement in progress to have Wilmington declared America’s first World War II city.

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