illustration of coronavirus

A local expert on China says the coronavirus outbreak has already impacted some Ohio businesses. A professor in Akron’s global business institute, Mahesh Srinivasan says some tire and medical implant manufacturers have seen disruptions in their rubber supply chain, but two main factors have delayed the impact elsewhere.

First, tariffs have forced some businesses to find alternate supply sources outside China, and second is the annual disruption in supply that occurs around Chinese New Year.

Precipitation Exacerbates Erosion in Geneva on the Lake

Feb 27, 2020
photo of Lake Erie

Geneva-on-the-Lake lost five to six feet of lakefront land Wednesday. Precipitation and high water levels are exacerbating the town’s erosion problems where 45 feet of land had already washed into Lake Erie earlier this month.

Geneva-on-the-Lake and Township Park officials met this week to discuss permit applications to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Those permits would allow for the construction of erosion defenses.

photo of Dan Horrigan

Akron officials are taking a “deep dive” into how they spend, and are finding that minority-owned businesses are not getting a fair shake when it comes to city contracts. That’s according to Mayor Dan Horrigan, who told the crowd at his annual State of the City address that the city also wants to hire a more diverse workforce.

photo of Tara Brown's former house

When the housing bubble burst, it left a trail of dilapidated homes in Ohio’s cities and rural communities. A decade later, that gave birth to a new problem for those communities: lease-to-own deals that promised a piece of the American dream but often turned out to be nightmares. 

photo of mike dewine

Ohio's Gov. Mike DeWine is calling for a meeting with the state's top leaders in the Senate and House to come up with a resolution on school vouchers. For weeks, the future of the EdChoice program has been the topic of hot debate. Now, with a deadline approaching, DeWine wants to strike a compromise with one top priority. 

The EdChoice scholarship system grants student vouchers based on school academic performance. The list of schools deemed to be failing is about to more than double from about 500 to 1,200.

photo of Tom Sorma

A landmark Cleveland restaurant that opened in the late 1920s and has charged the same prices for decades is getting ready to call it quits. When the owners of Old Fashion Hot Dogs retire next month, they may take a 92-year old recipe with them.

A photo of Summit Lake Apartments

The Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority (AMHA) is trying out a new program that aims to help people who live in public housing overcome obstacles for employment.

As part of the program, case managers will be available to meet with people living at AMHA's Summit Lake Apartments.

AMHA executive director Brian Gage says finding a job is not always the hard part.

a photo of carnation city mall in Alliance

Northeast Ohio has had its struggles with malls, like Akron's Chapel Hill which is facing foreclosure. But in Alliance, there is new hope for the Carnation City Mall.

The shopping center currently has just a few stores and food vendors left including a J.C. Penney and Dunham’s Sports.

photo of Meredith Ersing

When it comes to recycling plastic, most people check for a number on the bottom of every container. But what does that number actually mean, and why are some plastics not recyclable? This installment of our series, Reduce, Reuse, Refocus traces the life cycle of a piece of plastic.

Lake Erie

Geneva-on-the-Lake continues to experience massive amounts of erosion due to high water on Lake Erie. Dr. Chris Winslow, director of Ohio Sea Grant College Program at Stone Laboratory, says this problem is not unique to Geneva.

Winslow says these high amounts of erosion are being experienced across the Great Lakes region and are due to water levels reaching historic highs, as well as a lack of ice coverage. Water levels have been rising over the years as a result of precipitation from both spring rain events and heavy snow packs from the upper Great Lakes melting.

a photo of a woman with recycling bin

Changes in international markets along with skyrocketing processing costs have thrown the industry into a tailspin.

In this first installment of our series Reduce, Reuse, Refocus, we sort through the confusion about recycling. 

We heard it from you time and again.

"Why can't I find one place where I can get what I need to know about recycling in my city, my village, my township?"

We looked. We couldn't find one either.

As part of our series, Reduce Reuse Refocus, we decided to build one for you.

photo of marijuana plants

Two of the medical conditions rejected for inclusion in Ohio’s Medical Marijuana Control Program last year are getting another chance this year.  

An Ohio State Medical Board committee will, once again, consider anxiety and autism spectrum disorder as conditions for which marijuana could be recommended to patients. The committee will consider new information provided on those and also cachexia, a wasting disease that causes patients to lose weight.


The Cleveland Cavaliers made a surprise trade just hours before last week’s deadline. The team that’s in last place in the Eastern Conference (13-40) added two-time All-Star Andre Drummond of the Detroit Pistons without giving up any starters. Drummond is 6 feel 11 inches tall and 280 pounds. He averages 17.8 points and leads the NBA in rebounding at 15.8 per game.

WKSU sports commentator Terry Pluto says the trade underscores how in the NBA, the bigger you are the lower you're valued. 

illustration of coronavirus

A Central Ohio man teaching in China said he’s ending his contract to come home early amid growing concerns about the quickly spreading coronavirus


a photo of the farmers' market

Despite a disappointing season last year, the Countryside Farmers' Market at Highland Square in Akron will be back this summer. Market manager Serena Jones attributed last year’s lack of activity to the weather, saying it rained almost every Thursday the market was open. Jones said the decision to return was mission driven.  

a photo of Jane Fonda

Jane Fonda will return to Kent State this spring. The university has announced her appearance is part of events planned to honor the 50th anniversary of the May 4th shootings

Chic Canfora looks forward to Jane Fonda’s return to Kent State. “She was here in 1971," Canfora recalls. "She was here with a strong message that dissent is a powerful form of protection for our democracy."   

photo of Ethan Krauss

America has a long tradition of the lone inventor, and Ohio has long been a leader in aerospace innovation.

An inventor in Oberlin combines the two by creating a new form of aircraft in his backyard.

On this week’s Exploradio, we look at the quest for a flying machine with no moving parts.

A photo of new Browns general manager Andrew Berry

The Cleveland Browns Wednesday will introduce their new general manager. Andrew Berry, 32, becomes the youngest GM in NFL history, and the league’s second current African-American to hold the position. WKSU sports commentator Terry Pluto says the Browns’ front office now has three Ivy League graduates.

a photo of I love voting stickers

The Iowa Democratic Caucus failed to produce results on Monday night due to what state party officials cited as "inconsistencies with the reports." As Ohio prepares for its primary in March, the state's top elections official was asked: Can what happened in Iowa happen in Ohio?

Secretary of State Frank LaRose says -- "No" -- what's happening in Iowa could not happen in Ohio. For one thing, Iowa uses the caucus system and Ohio uses the primary system with voting machines that tabulate the votes and include a paper trail.

a photo of Callis Tower
From the film "An Answer from Akron"

Alpha Phi Alpha Fratnerity Inc., a historically black fraternity, is a major landlord in Akron, owning more than 800 rental units. How that came to be is depicted in a new documentary film that debuts Monday night on PBS Western Reserve in honor of Black History Month.

HOME IN AKRON: When Squatters Become Tenants

Feb 3, 2020
a photo of landlord Laura Speaks at her property

Killing time between the morning pick up and afternoon drop off Tuesday, Laura Speaks parked her school bus and hopped on Facebook.

An advertisement flashed on her cell phone for a used side-by-side Kenmore refrigerator.

“I thought, ’Man, that kind of looks like my refrigerator,’” Speaks said. The photo had a kitchen table, mop and broom similar to those in a house she owns and rents out on Darrow Road.

She clicked on the ad, “shocked” by the name of the seller: Collin Cole.

photo of Mark Zarefoss

A long-time vendor at the West Side Market is hopeful for the future as he celebrates 25 years at the Cleveland landmark.

“Every morning he gets up [at] 4:30 a.m. to cut up a cow and to cut up fresh pork,” says Minnie Zarefoss of her husband, Mark. They met at the West Side Market in the early 1980s. And they celebrated 25 years of owning their own stand -- Jim’s Meats – on Saturday, February 1.

a photo of vaping products

The local chapter of the American Heart Association says one in four high school students report using an e-cigarette in the past month. The organization hosted a community conversation about the issue Thursday with school administrators and students.  

Addison Johnson, a senior at Akron’s STEM high school, told the Heart Association vaping devices are small and easy to use undetected at school. He also said there’s a misperception among students who use them.

photo of recycling bin

In Cleveland, most of the recycling residents put at the curb is not being recycled. City leaders says it’s a problem many cities are dealing with because of a changing market and contaminated items.

Cleveland has hired a consultant to help them figure out a new path forward. It will likely involve a drastic reduction in the program.