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If you’ve watched a Cleveland Cavaliers game on TV in the past 13 years, you likely heard the voice of Fred McLeod. The Cavs’ play-by-play announcer died suddenly on Monday. He was 67.  WKSU sports commentator Terry Pluto said the longtime broadcaster was about to enter his 14th season with an organization that he loved.

ERIK DROST / WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

The Browns have less than a week to regroup after their embarrassing season-opening loss to the Tennessee Titans. The team that's been hyped in the off-season was blown out by a score of 43-13. WKSU sports commentator Terry Pluto lists five things the Browns must fix heading into their Monday Night Football showdown on the road against the New York Jets. 

a photo of Barberton mayor William Judge
SARAH TAYLOR / WKSU

For the third time, William B. Judge faced a challenger in the Democratic primary for Barberton mayor. And for the third time, Judge has prevailed. This time, though, the margin of victory was narrower than it has been in the past. 

In the September 2015 primary Judge captured 77% of the vote, easily defeating John Lysenko. In the September 2011 mayoral primary, Judge beat Bob Genet with 54% support.  

photo of carbon emissions
JAMES KELLEY / SHUTTERSTOCK

Working to support wind and solar has become almost standard in states nationwide. Some are even phasing out coal, but not Ohio. It recently passed a law doubling down on subsidies for power plants.  

Refugees welcome
M.L. SCHULTZE / WKSU

President Trump is expected to decide Tuesday whether to effectively eliminate a national refugee program credited with revitalizing Akron and other Midwestern cities. 

large metal parts
NICK COOL / TEAM NEO

Additive Manufacturing, better known as 3-D printing, is one of the fastest growing technology sectors.

It’s a printing process where plastic or metal parts are built-up layer by layer.

In this week’s Exploradio, we look at where the industry is headed and how Northeast Ohio is building itself into the nation’s additive leader.

a photo of William Judge
SARAH TAYLOR / WKSU

Like many cities in Northeast Ohio, Barberton—known as the magic city-- is facing issues of population loss, job loss, and financial difficulty. While it is a city rich in civic pride, those challenges are playing a role in next week’s Democratic mayoral primary.

Whoever wins will have to bring together a city divided. 

Photo of medical marijuana
Shutterstock.com

Since the state passed a medical marijuana law in 2016, not many growing sites, processing facilities and dispensaries have been approved by the state. This delay is slowing down the expansion of the cannabis industry. 

Tess Bennett's article "A Budding Industry" in the Devil Strip outlines the state of the medical marijuana industry in Akron. She said the state's not to blame because of how new the regulation process is for Ohio. "Road bumps are to be expected," Bennett said.

Jenn Kidd

Akron recording artist Gabriel Schray, who releases music as G S Schray, has been active in the local music scene for more than 20 years.

Erik Drost / Wikimedia Commons

Fans are pinning their hopes on a big season for the Cleveland Browns. The hype has been building since quarterback Baker Mayfield led the team’s turnaround last year. They’ve since added star wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. They open the season Sunday at home against the Tennessee Titans. 

a photo of Renee Pinsky with black and white cookies
CAROL FRIEDMAN / TEMPLE ISRAEL SISTERHOOD

A local organization is trying a new way to satisfy the community’s cravings for traditional Jewish food. Every other year, Temple Israel Sisterhood hosts the Art and Jewish Food Festival in Akron.

photo of death penalty gavel
DAVID CARILLET / SHUTTERSTOCK

There’s an ongoing and uncivil war between many Republicans and Democrats. But two former Ohio governors have called a truce and created a friendship. And though they’re from different parties, Republican Bob Taft and Democrat Ted Strickland have a lot of views in common.

a photo of Arts Education
OHIO ALLIANCE FOR ARTS EDUCATION

The Ohio Alliance for Arts Education is welcoming a new leader. Jarrod Hartzler is leaving Akron’s Tuesday Musical to take over as the Alliance’s executive director.

On this Week's State of the Arts we sit down with Hartzler, who thinks some things are working in schools when it comes to the arts, while other aspects need improvement.

photo of a man sweating in a tshirt
MATHEW WILSON / FLICKR/CC

RooSense, An Akron Based Start-up, is getting a $25,000 grant to further its research on a fabric it's developing that can help you monitor your body’s electrolytes. 

The technology can be utilized to help users come up with a better hydration plan tailored to their body.

RooSense founder Chelsea Monty-Bromer says the material can be used to help athletes and other individuals better hydrate their bodies.

A photo of state legislators
ANGIE PHIFER / OHIO HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

A bipartisan group of state legislators stopped at Kent State University as they toured two northeast Ohio legislative districts. Representatives Randi Clites (D-Ravenna) and Casey Weinstein (D-Hudson) hosted the tour for freshmen lawmakers.

They started with an economic development roundtable in Hudson. Weinstein says it was a productive discussion about how to strengthen northeast Ohio’s economy. The daylong tour ended at HopTree, a Hudson craft brewery. 

face of early human ancestor
MATT CROW / CMNH

A team led by Cleveland researchers has discovered a fossil cranium that puts a face on an early human ancestor which had only been known by bone fragments.

The finding also shows that this human ancestor lived at the same time as the species made famous by the Lucy fossils.

Erik Drost / Wikimedia Commons

Pro baseball is a grueling six-month, 162-game season. And the Indians are especially beat up as they head into the home stretch. Yet they’re still in the playoff picture.

WKSU commentator Terry Pluto said the team has been built to face down adversity. 

photo of someone signing a petition
STEVE ESTVANIK / SHUTTERSTOCK

The battle lines have been drawn for the fight over Ohio's new energy law.

A ballot group is looking to collect signatures statewide to ask voters to overturn the law that bails out nuclear power plants. But a new group has formed to argue in favor of the ratepayer subsidies.

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost
JO INGLES / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost has joined a U.S. Supreme Court case siding with states that think federal civil rights laws do not protect LGBTQ employees from workplace discrimination.

That news came as a shock to some activists, but was well received by others. 

Sen. Nickie Antonio (D-Lakewood) is disappointed – to say the least.

“Our attorney general has entered into weighing in and support of a push to discriminate against a group of people. That is appalling,” Antonio said.

a photo of a hemp plant
TY HIGGINS / OHIO FARM BUREAU

The Ohio Farm Bureau is taking steps to prepare Ohio farmers to grow their first crop of hemp next spring now that Gov. Mike DeWine signed a law legalizing it.

The Farm Bureau is researching best practices for growing hemp. Spokesman Ty Higgins said hemp is a crop that can be grown anywhere in Ohio.

DIARI LA VEU / FLICKR CC

Lake Erie has one of the highest concentrations of microplastic pollution in the world.

Sherri Mason, a researcher at Penn State Behrend in Erie, was the first to report that finding.

Her discovery led to congressional action banning microbeads in consumer products.

On this week’s Exploradio,  we spend some time with Mason finding out how microplastic pollution remains a health hazard.

Photo of Akron Pride Fest
CARTER ADAMS / WKSU

Thousands made their way to Akron’s Hardesty park Saturday  in the pursuit of celebrating love, life and pride. For attendees of the third annual Akron Pride Festival, all three were in abundance.

Starting early in the morning with a parade and going well into the evening with live performances, the park remained vibrant throughout the day. 

The Jam Company

Saxophonist and Kent State University music teacher Chris Coles has spent the past two years creating a performance piece that he hopes will raise awareness about racial injustice. Nine Lives Project tells the story of the 2015 shooting in Charleston, S.C., where a white supremacist killed nine black parishioners at Emanuel AME Church. Coles says it was a turning point in his life.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are ramping up to celebrate their 50th season in the NBA. On Tuesday, the team announced a new Wall of Honor to serve as a tribute to those who have made “significant contributions” to the organization and its history. It will stand in the new North Atrium area of Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse.

a photo of Cleveland Browns third string quarterback Garrett Gilbert
ERIK DROST / FLICKR

There’s a growing argument in the pro sports world to eliminate the NFL preseason. Teams play four games during the month of August, mostly using backups and soon-to-be-cut journeymen. WKSU sports commentator Terry Pluto says the NFL preseason is big dollars for very little entertainment.  

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