Wednesday, 11 November 2015 19:46

AUDIO: What's Next In The Plane Crash Investigation?

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Investigators descended on Ellet Tuesday in the wake of the plane crash that killed nine people aboard a Hawker H25 jet headed for Akron Fulton Airport.

Former FAA investigator Jeff Rich says the National Transportation Safety Board is conducting what is called the "field phase" of the investigation, which could take as long as a week. This first stage begins by making sure that all of the debris is at the crash site. Next, investigators will try to determine the physical characteristics of the plane, including the positions of the landing gear and ailerons.

Within 30 days, the NTSB must issue a preliminary report that includes some basic details about the plane and the crash.

Investigators can move the wreckage to another location once the Medical Examiner's Office has completed its work. Rich says that location could be as close as a hangar at Fulton Airport. 

Rich described the Hawker H25 as an older type of aircraft, but a sturdy one with no known major safety issues.


Jeff Rich analyzes the Ellet plane crash and talks about the next steps in the investigation

Sunday, 08 November 2015 14:18

Football Playoff Venues Announced

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Here's a look at who and where the remaining local high school football teams will play in the second round of the Ohio High School Athletic Association football playoffs.

Division I, Region 1 (Saturday, 7:00 p.m.)

#2 Stow-Munroe Falls vs. #7 Solon at InfoCision Stadium - Summa Field at The University of Akron

Division II, Region 3 (Friday, 7:30 p.m.)

#8 Nordonia vs. #5 Hudson at Bedford Bearcat Stadium

Division II, Region 5 (Friday, 7:30 p.m.)

#1 Perry vs. #5 Dresden Tri-Valley at Dover Crater Stadium

Division III, Region 7 (Friday, 7:30 p.m.)

#1 Archbishop Hoban vs. #5 Louisville at Green Memorial Stadium

#2 St. Vincent-St. Mary vs. #6 West Geauga at Ravenna Portage Community Bank Stadium

Division IV, Region 11 (Saturday, 7:00 p.m.)

#1 Woodridge vs. #5 Youngstown Ursuline at Hudson Memorial Stadium

#7 Parma Hts. Holy Name vs #3 Crestwood at Nordonia Boliantz Stadium

Division V, Region 15 (Friday, 7:30 p.m.)

#2 Sandy Valley vs. #3 Canton Central Catholic at Massillon Paul Brown Tiger Stadium

Division V, Region 16 (Friday, 7:30 p.m.)

#7 Rossford vs. #6 Chippewa at Huron Kalahari Field

Division VI, Region 19 (Saturday, 7:00 p.m.)

#7 Smithville vs. #6 Cuyahoga Heights at Medina Highland North Gateway Tire Field

Division VII, Region 23 (Friday, 7:30 p.m.)

#2 Mogadore vs #3 Norwalk St. Paul at Medina Ken Dukes Stadium

The rest of the statewide pairings can be found on the OHSAA website.





Thursday, 05 November 2015 17:27

UA Sex Assault Survey

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The University of Akron is sharing results of a survey about sexual assaults.

The survey of over 3,300 students says nearly seven percent of all students, and over 10 percent of female students, reported that they were forced to have sexual contact without consent. That includes time before they came to the university.

Mike Strong with UA's Sexual Assault and Violence Education (SAVE) team says the goal is zero.

"We are working hard. Our goal is zero sexual assaults, zero dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, any of those related behaviors," Strong tells WAKR's Jasen Sokol. "We have a long way to go, but we're working hard to get there."

The survey also found that there should be more training so bystanders can intervene.

It also said male students need more education on sexual assault myths.

Monday, 02 November 2015 18:20

AUDIO: Akron Mayoral Candidates Make Final Pitch

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In less than 24 hours, the polls will open for Akronites to elect their first new long-term mayor in nearly three decades. Republican candidate Eddie Sipplen and Democratic candidate Dan Horrigan talked to The Jasen Sokol Show about their experiences on the campaign trail, the sewer issue, and who they think is underrepresented in city government.


Tuesday, 27 October 2015 14:52

Meet the Candidates: Akron Municipal Court

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Dave Lombardi and Jon Oldham are running for the Akron Municipal Court bench currently occupied by Lombardi. Both candidates talked to Jasen about their qualifications and their ideas for the court.

Tuesday, 27 October 2015 14:43

Meet the Candidates: Stow Muni Court Clerk

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The race for Stow Municipal Court clerks has been among the most hotly contested local races of the year. Democrat Diana Colavecchio, independent Kevin Coughlin, and Republican Don Robart all sat down with Jasen to talk about their ideas for the court and the highly negative tone of the campaign.

Wednesday, 14 October 2015 17:43

Akron Independent Candidate Bill Melver Lays Out Vision

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The two major party candidates for Akron mayor squared off in a debate this week.

There's another candidate who wasn't there - Bill Melver, who is running as an independent in November against Democrat Dan Horrigan and Republican Eddie Sipplen.

Melver says he wants to help stem Akron's population loss by more promotion of the things Akron has to offer.

"Those who are contemplating moving out of the city," Melver tells WAKR's Jasen Sokol, "they are passing up a great opportunity to make a quality of life living right here in Akron."

He says current leaders do a "lackadasical" or poor job highlighting the city's strengths.

Melver points to his years working at GE under former CEO Jack Welch, and says asking what Welch would do would be a guide for him.

The University of Akron has announced a new two-year partnership with the Akron Civic Theatre and Playhouse Square to present the Broadway in Akron series.

The university says the shows will be presented as scheduled. The Broadway in Akron series begins with "The Producers" on November 3rd.

UA VP of Finance Nathan Mortimer says Playhouse Square will bring some marketing muscle to the program.

There was uncertainty related to whether or not the shows would go on after the staff at E.J. Thomas Hall was laid off in July due to budget cuts at UA.

Mortimer reiterates that all E.J. Thomas shows will go on.

The pact with the Civic Theatre and Playhouse Square lasts for the next two years.



(News Release - University of Akron) As the saying goes, "the show will go on," and go on it will at E.J. Thomas Hall through a new relationship between The University of Akron, Akron Civic Theatre and Playhouse Square to present Broadway in Akron.

"In consultation with the Akron Civic Theatre, we reached out to Playhouse Square to explore the best possible way to fulfill our commitment to season ticket holders and members of the Akron community to deliver Broadway," stated Nathan J. Mortimer, The University of Akron vice president for finance and administration and chief financial officer. "Our intent always was to present the shows as scheduled and we are excited that our relationship with Playhouse Square will enable us to do that. We are most grateful to both the Akron Civic and to Playhouse Square for working with us to seamlessly deliver the four scheduled shows at E.J. Thomas Hall. We are excited the same shows will be presented on the same dates and times and at E.J. Thomas Hall as previously announced and that all season ticket purchases are honored."

Broadway in Akron begins Nov. 3-4 with The Producers. The other shows are The Buddy Holly Story on Jan. 12-13, Flashdance the Musical on March 8-9 and 42nd Street on May 10-11.

"As a not-for-profit performing arts center, the entertainment on stage is at the core of our work and we feel it is important to help the Akron community experience the performances they have been anticipating in their home, E.J. Thomas Hall," said Playhouse Square Executive Producer Gina Vernaci.

The two-year agreement not only ensures the performances will go on as scheduled but also allows The University of Akron time to explore all options for presenting Broadway at E.J. Thomas Hall going forward.

"We all felt it was important to find a way to keep Broadway going in Akron," explained Akron Civic Theatre Executive Director Howard Parr. "People in the Akron area have proven over and over again they will support high-quality touring arts and entertainment programming at both venues. This new relationship helps make sure those programs will continue to be available in our community."

Tickets for individual shows go on sale September 28 and may be purchased online at, by calling 330-253-2488 or at the Akron Civic Theatre ticket office.

As announced previously, other non-Broadway performances scheduled for E.J. Thomas Hall will go on as planned. They include the Akron Symphony, Tuesday Musical Association, DANCECleveland, Mannheim Steamroller Christmas, performances by musical students from The University of Akron and other University-related programs.

Wednesday, 16 September 2015 15:14

UA Officials: Once Again, No Name Change Planned

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The University of Akron continues to react to rumors that a name change is in the offing.

Vice President for Advancement Larry Burns repeated what was in a statement released Tuesday to the university community - they aren't planning to change UA's name.

"Well, I can't predict 10, 20 years from now," Burns tells WAKR's Jasen Sokol, "but at this point with this administration and the current situation we're in, the statement was clear that there will be no name change."

Burns says a name change or any such change would be a long process that would include the state legislature, and says no such proposal is on the table.

He says he realizes some may be confused by the process, and says that UA will continue to issue "as many statements as we need" to clarify the situation.


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