Gene Wilder
8:44 am
Thu October 30, 2014

"Blazing Saddles," and Gene Wilder, 40 Years Later in Stamford

Superfan Ria Scalish, at left, with her husband.
Jeff Cohen WNPR

It's been 40 years since the release of the Mel Brooks' movie Blazing Saddles. I recently went to an anniversary screening and in the audience was one of the movie's stars: Gene Wilder.

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Sandy Recovery
7:07 am
Thu October 30, 2014

After The Waves, Staten Island Homeowner Takes Sandy Buyout

Stephen Drimalas stands outside his former home in Staten Island's Ocean Breeze neighborhood. He rebuilt his home after Superstorm Sandy but recently decided to sell it to the state of New York.
Jennifer Hsu WNYC

Originally published on Thu October 30, 2014 8:59 am

Two years after Superstorm Sandy struck the Northeast, hundreds of Staten Islanders are deciding whether to sell their shorefront homes to New York state, which wants to knock them down and let the empty land act as a buffer to the ocean.

Stephen Drimalas was one Staten Islander faced with this tough decision. He lived in a bungalow not far from the beach in the working-class neighborhood of Ocean Breeze. He barely escaped Sandy's floodwaters with his life.

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Baseball
6:30 am
Thu October 30, 2014

World Series: Madison Bumgarner Carries Giants To 3rd Title In 5 Years

San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner throws during the fifth inning of Game 7 of the World Series. He was also the winning starting pitcher in Game 1 and Game 5.
Jeff Roberson AP

Originally published on Thu October 30, 2014 6:27 am

Updated on Oct. 30 at 1:45 a.m. ET.

Madison Bumgarner won Game 1 of this World Series, throwing seven innings and giving up one run on three hits. He won Game 5, throwing a complete game shutout.

And on Wednesday night, completing one of the most impressive postseason pitching performances in history, he helped the team take Game 7, pitching the final five innings on two days rest, giving up just two hits as the Giants won the game 3-2, and won the World Series.

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Rocket Explosion
4:02 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Russian Engines Could Be Focus Of Antares Launch Failure Probe

The Orbital Sciences Corporation Antares rocket suffers a catastrophic anomaly moments after launch at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia on Tuesday.
Joel Kowsky AP

Originally published on Thu October 30, 2014 9:34 am

NPR's Geoff Brumfiel reports that as investigators examine what went wrong with the launch of an unmanned Antares rocket on Tuesday, they'll likely take a hard look at powerful engines originally destined to send cosmonauts to the moon, a project that was scrapped by the USSR more than four decades ago.

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The Business of Defense
3:44 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Electric Boat Says $10 Million State Loan Guarantees 8,900 Jobs

Electric Boat president Jeffrey Geiger with state officials.
Credit Harriet Jones / WNPR

Electric Boat will use a $10 million loan from the state of Connecticut to buy and refit a building from nearby Pfizer. The Groton-based shipyard is launching a $31 million program to expand and upgrade its facilities.

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Election 2014
3:05 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Gov. Patrick Points To Economic Growth In Western Mass.

Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA) at the Western Mass. Business Expo in Springfield

Originally published on Wed October 29, 2014 12:59 pm

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick highlighted his administration’s success over the last eight years in job growth and economic development during an address to a business group in Springfield today.  The speech at a breakfast sponsored by the Affiliated Chambers of Commerce of Greater Springfield comes as voters are less than a week away from picking his successor.

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Metro-North
11:54 am
Wed October 29, 2014

Transportation Safety Board Issues Report on Metro-North Accidents

A 2013 Metro-North train derailment in Bridgeport injured 65 commuters.
NTSB
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Election Day
8:08 am
Wed October 29, 2014

Election Day Includes Ballot Question for Connecticut Voters

A Connecticut polling place in a file photo.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

Next Tuesday, November 4, Connecticut is among several states that will ask voters about changing elections laws. The ballot question on amending the Connecticut constitution is the "first" step towards making voting more flexible here.

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Jazz Corridor
7:57 am
Wed October 29, 2014

Guitar Wizardry Rules in New Haven; Jazzy Halloween Spirit Reigns in Torrington

Jessica Pavone, left, and Mary Halvorson.
Peter Gannushkin downtownmusic.net

Devotees of the ruggedly individualistic, inexhaustibly creative Mary Halvorson have much to celebrate and cogitate upon as the rising, young, cutting-edge guitarist presents solo explorations at 8:30 and 10:00 pm on November 7 at New Haven’s Firehouse 12, 45 Crown Street.

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Election 2014
7:29 am
Wed October 29, 2014

Tom Foley Fears Push Towards State Health Insurance; Nancy Wyman Says He's Wrong

Tom Foley.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

Governor Dannel Malloy has made implementing the Affordable Care Act a priority, something not all governors across the nation have done. With the election just a few days away, we spoke with Republican Tom Foley to get his view on the nation's new health care law. 

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Election 2014
6:53 am
Wed October 29, 2014

Malloy, Foley Remain Tied in New Quinnipiac Poll

Six days before Election Day, the new Quinnipiac Poll shows the race is in a dead heat for Tom Foley, left, and Gov. Dannel Malloy, right.
Chion Wolf WNPR

The latest Quinnipiac University poll shows the race for governor in Connecticut remains deadlocked. The poll released Wednesday shows Governor Dannel Malloy and Republican Tom Foley tied with 43 percent each of likely voters surveyed. That's little changed from a poll released October 22.

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Disaster Response
5:00 am
Wed October 29, 2014

Red Cross 'Diverted Assets' During Storms' Aftermath To Focus On Image

In the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, a former Red Cross official says, as many as 40 percent of the organization's emergency vehicles were assigned for public relations purposes. This photo, which shows one of the trucks in Long Island, N.Y., in January 2013, is one example of the many publicity photos taken by the Red Cross.
Les Stone American Red Cross

Originally published on Thu October 30, 2014 10:14 am

Within hours of Superstorm Sandy slamming the East Coast two years ago, Americans opened their wallets to help — donating millions to the first charity that came to mind: the American Red Cross.

President Obama, like most elected officials and celebrities, vouched for the organization, encouraging people to give.

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Homeland Security
8:19 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

U.S. Beefs Up Security At Some Federal Buildings

The U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 28, 2014 6:19 pm

The United States is beefing up security at some federal installations across the country, the Department of Homeland Security said on Tuesday.

In a statement, DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson said it would not detail the changes because they were "law-enforcement sensitive." But, he said, the new measures will enhance Federal Protective Service presence and security at government buildings in D.C. and across the country.

Johnson went on:

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Space
6:48 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

WATCH: Unmanned Antares Rocket Explodes Shortly After Takeoff

Originally published on Tue October 28, 2014 10:01 pm

A unmanned rocket carrying 5,000 pounds of supplies and experiments to the International Space Station exploded shortly after blastoff on Tuesday at NASA's facility on Wallops Island, Va.

The rocket was made by Orbital Sciences, which was contracted by NASA to ship supplies up to the International Space Station.

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Entertainment
3:40 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

A Candid Memoir From Comedian Amy Poehler? 'Yes Please'

Amy Poehler plays Leslie Knope on Parks and Recreation, which will air its final season next year. Poehler says, "It's a privilege in television to be able to have a proper goodbye."
Colleen Hayes NBC

When comedian Amy Poehler was in her 20s, she read her boyfriend's journal and found out that he didn't think she was pretty.

"It was almost like an itch being scratched, which was, 'Aha! I knew that you didn't think I was pretty!' ... And then it was followed by a real crash because ... my ego was bruised," Poehler tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.

Poehler says it taught her that the earlier you figure out your "currency," the happier you'll be. For Poehler, that meant not leaning on her looks to be successful.

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Syrian Civil War
3:11 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

Syrian Peace Activist Reflects on How Civil War Changed His Country

Rami Nakhla, a Syrian pro-democracy activist and Yale World Fellow.
Credit Yale University

Speaking Tuesday on WNPR's Where We Live, Rami Nakhla, a noted Syrian peace activist, said the Syrian Civil War started as a pro-democracy uprising, but has since changed, facilitating the rise of groups like the so-called Islamic State. 

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Ebola Outbreak
2:03 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

American Volunteers In Liberia Are Anti-Quarantine

An Ebola health alert is displayed at the entrance to Bellevue Hospital in New York City, where Dr. Craig Spencer was quarantined after showing symptoms consistent with the virus.
Bryan Thomas Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 28, 2014 5:03 pm

At the Ebola treatment center in Foya, Liberia, there's one thought on every American volunteer's mind: 21 days of isolation.

The threat of quarantines for health care workers coming back from West Africa cropped up in nearly every conversation I had on Saturday with doctors and nurses at the clinic run by Doctors Without Borders.

Everyone was worried, especially a nurse from New York City. Some states, like New York, New Jersey and Illinois, are already requiring 21-day quarantines, possibly in hospitals, for all medical staff coming home. Others might follow.

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Climate Change
1:20 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

How Should Connecticut's Candidates Talk About Climate Change?

iStock Thinkstock

With the gubernatorial election one week away, lots of issues are on the minds of voters: the economy and jobs, taxes, gun policy, and education -- but what about climate change? 

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Johnsonville
10:19 am
Tue October 28, 2014

For Sale: Abandoned Connecticut Village

The Johnsonville General Store.
RM Bradley Co.

Online bidding begins on Tuesday for an entire village in Connecticut named Johnsonville, an abandoned village in the Moodus section of East Haddam.

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New Britain
10:10 am
Tue October 28, 2014

Polish Stories Project: The Family Tree of Daria Savickas

Daria Savickas with a photo of her late mom, Mary Wesoly Zurek, who served as first lieutenant nurse in the U.S. Army during World War II.
Catie Talarski WNPR

Daria Savickas's great-grandfather came to the United States from Poland in 1875 as part of the largest wave of Polish immigration to this country at the turn of the century. He worked at a hotel in Chicago, and then at a factory in Buffalo, New York. "He was a forest ranger," Savickas said. "He liked being in the forest," so he eventually returned to his homeland.

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Election 2014
8:29 am
Tue October 28, 2014

Gov. Christie Stumps for Tom Foley Once Again

Gov. Chris Christie at The Spot in Groton.
Harriet Jones WNPR

Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey was back on the stump in Connecticut on Monday, rallying the troops for Republican candidate Tom Foley. But he also faced a few questions about an Ebola controversy in his own state. 

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Middle East
8:21 am
Tue October 28, 2014

Facing The Islamic State Threat, Kurdish Fighters Unite

Three female members of Turkey's Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and an Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga fighter stand near the front line in Makhmur, in northern Iraq, on Aug. 9. The Turkish and Iraqi Kurds have been fighting together against the Islamic State.
Safin Hamed AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 28, 2014 1:17 pm

At a checkpoint outside the northern Iraq town of Makhmur, I saw something I'd never seen before in Iraq.

Two men were checking cars. One was young and wearing a sand-colored uniform of the official Iraqi Kurdish forces, called the peshmerga. The other was older, grizzled and dressed in an olive-green, traditional Kurdish overall, and he's with Turkey's Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

"We're happy to be working together," said the older man, Hajji Hussein Abdulrahman.

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Canada
11:30 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

Ford Brothers Lose Toronto Mayor Race, Hold On To Council Seat

John Tory speaks to supporters Monday night after being elected as mayor in Toronto.
Aaron Harris Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue October 28, 2014 1:39 pm

Unofficial results Monday night showed the next mayor of Toronto would be John Tory, who topped fellow Progressive Conservative Doug Ford in a race that was upended earlier this year when Ford's scandal-ridden brother, incumbent mayor Rob Ford, left the race after being diagnosed with cancer.

After that announcement, Doug Ford stepped up to run for mayor in his brother's place, while Rob Ford ran for his brother's council seat. He kept that council seat on Monday night, winning 59 percent of the vote for the position his family has held since the ward was created in 2000.

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Ebola Outbreak
8:02 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

Connecticut Details Ebola Quarantine Policies

Gov. Malloy with state agency heads at the Emergency Operations Center in Hartford earlier this month.
Credit Office of Gov. Malloy

Connecticut officials are joining counterparts in other states in defending and detailing quarantine powers they've enacted as a precaution against Ebola.

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Transportation
7:53 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

Woman Killed By Amtrak Train in Milford, Connecticut

An Amtrak train from a file photo.
Credit John Mueller / Creative Commons

A woman was struck and killed by an Amtrak train in Milford on Monday.

A Metro-North official said the woman was struck at 12:21 pm west of the Milford train station. 

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Ebola Outbreak
4:27 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

New York's Disease Detectives Hit The Street In Search Of Ebola

A woman on the L train in New York City last week covers her face, fearful because a doctor with Ebola rode the train days earlier. Epidemiologists say people on the subway were not at risk.
Stephen Nessen WNYC

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 6:25 pm

A little-seen force has fanned out across New York City intent on stopping the spread of Ebola virus – disease detectives go looking for contacts who might be infected.

"They're just really good at finding people," says Denis Nash. He worked for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the New York City Health Department, tracing the spread of HIV and West Nile virus. He says these trained applied epidemiologists are experts at finding almost anybody, with only a vague description.

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Retail Technology
2:28 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

CVS Pulls Apple Pay, And Many See A Fight Over Mobile Wallets

Originally published on Mon October 27, 2014 3:25 pm

One week after Apple's new mobile payment system, Apple Pay, debuted in CVS stores, CVS has backtracked and barred its use. Rite Aid took the same step, leading many observers to note that the two companies are part of a group of retailers that's developing its own payment system, called CurrentC. Partners include Wal-Mart, Best Buy and 7-Eleven.

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Election 2014
1:12 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

Pensions, Liability at Center of Connecticut Treasurer's Race

Denise Nappier and Tim Herbst are both campaigning for the position of Connecticut state treasurer.

Pension funds valued at $29 billion and even greater unfunded liabilities are giving Treasurer Denise Nappier and Republican challenger Tim Herbst plenty to fight about. 

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Future of Gaming
12:41 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

Campaigning Heats Up on Massachusetts Casino Ballot Question

A rendering of the proposed MGM casino in Springfield, Massachusetts.
mgmspringfield.com

Massachusetts voters will get to decide a question on the ballot next week that’s of great interest to Connecticut. Opponents of the state’s law allowing casino gambling have placed a question that asks voters if they want to repeal the measure. 

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Side Business
11:25 am
Mon October 27, 2014

The Secret Lives Of Teachers: Mei-Ling Uliasz

Doll's-eye necklace pendant
Courtesy of Mei-Ling Uliasz

Originally published on Tue October 28, 2014 2:38 pm

When's she's not teaching second-graders in Connecticut, Mei-Ling Uliasz turns bottle caps and little tin cars and brass protractors and other found objects into whimsical "upcycled" jewelry.

Tell us about your secret life.

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