Friday, 09 September 2016 09:04

AUDIO: Dr. Brian Harte Settles In At Akron General

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Dr. Brian Harte has been with the Cleveland Clinic since 2004, and now he’ll make his way down south to Akron.

Dr. Harte joined the Ray Horner Morning Show to discuss the announcement of him being named president of Akron General, effective September 26th. Dr. Harte says he looks forward to getting to know the residency at the hospital, and plans to dive head-first into the community.

"The partnership with Cleveland Clinic has been fantastic,” says Dr. Harte about Akron General.

As far as the world of medicine goes, Dr. Harte sees the near future will include more attention to wellness and outpatient care for chronic conditions. He believes clinics will have a much different feel to them than the last 5-10 years.

Thursday, 08 September 2016 07:58

AUDIO: Bill Tompkin Hopes To Keep His Hives

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The sight and the sound of bees can make the burliest of men shiver. That is why a new ordinance in the city of Cuyahoga Falls may put Bill Tompkin’s beekeeping hobby out to pasture.

Tompkin, a former firefighter, joined the Ray Horner Morning Show to talk about his four beehives, and how long he may or may not hold be able to onto them. Tompkin believes this proposed ordinance is based off of “ignorance and fear,” and that most people who would walk by his property would never know about the hives.

Each of the four hives, according to Tompkin, can contain somewhere between 70 and 90,000 bees. WAKR has reached out to the city of Cuyahoga Falls, but as of this posting, we have yet to receive a response.

Tuesday, 06 September 2016 08:56

AUDIO: RubberDucks Owner Proud Of His Playoff Team

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The Akron RubberDucks have once again qualified for the playoffs, winning their division for the ninth time in franchise history.

Ken Babby, the owner of the RubberDucks, joined the Ray Horner Morning Show to talk about his club’s perseverance. Babby gives a lot of credit to manager Dave Wallace, who had to grind through the season as his best players were called up to a higher league. The Ducks’ owner was proud of how the team played, especially down the stretch, as they were victorious in 20 of their last 25 contests.

The RubberDucks are the top seed in the playoffs, and will take on the Altoona Curve this Wednesday for two games before returning home to Canal Park.

Wednesday, 31 August 2016 08:34

AUDIO: Rich Heldenfels Calls It A Career At The ABJ

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After 22 years at the Akron Beacon Journal, Rich Heldenfels is calling it a career. And on his 65th birthday, no less.

Heldenfels has been a pop culture writer at the Beacon since 1994, and he joined the Ray Horner Morning Show on his final day on the job. Heldenfels talked about his arrival into Akron by way of Schenectady, New York, and was thrust into work head-first during the OJ Simpson saga in ’94.

The long-time Beacon writer says some of his favorite memories were meeting local celebrities who went national, such as Steve Harvey Drew Carey, and LeBron James, and walking around the set of 25 Hill at Derby Downs.

Heldenfels will still teach at the University of Akron, but now that his wife has also retired, he felt this was a good time to step away from the paper.

Over the weekend, 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick made the headlines over his refusal to stand up during the “Star-Spangled Banner.” Kaepernick stood by his comments, believing America and its flag and anthem have promoted institutional racism.

Eddie Sipplen, a local attorney and former mayoral candidate, joined the Ray Horner Morning Show to discuss Kaepernick’s decision from a different standpoint. Sipplen respects his right to sit out the National Anthem, believing his decision can open up honest dialogue. He feels that both blacks and whites should have this conversation on race relations.

Sipplen believes an honest dialogue can help Americans get away from the methodology and get to the message as to why Kaepernick is making this political point. The key points in the conversation, according to Sipplen, are about classism and white folks’ perception of blacks, no matter the social and economic backgrounds.

It is day five of the Rubber City Radio Group’s spotlight on the heroin epidemic, and today, we look to what we as a community can do next. Summit County sheriff Steve Barry joined the Ray Horner Morning Show to inform what his office is doing to stop the heroin outbreak. Sheriff Barry says the county is putting teams together to gather as much information as possible to educate the public about opiates and the subsequent addiction. Why is it so bad in Akron? He believes our location nationally, as well as a lower economic state, are large factors. What can the people do? Barry urges the public to read the signs and call their local law enforcement agency if they come across suspicious activity. By doing so, officers can arrest the local traffickers, then working their way up to the suppliers.

Thursday, 25 August 2016 06:45

Day Four: Summa Treating Victims Of Opiate Abuse

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It is day four of the Rubber City Radio Group’s platform on the heroin epidemic in the area. The spotlight today is on the treatment of opiate addiction and the various in the area who are there to assist. Summa Health System’s Dr. Alan Shein, MD of Addiction Medicine Services, joined the Ray Horner Morning Show to discuss the treatment program an addict will undergo. First off, Dr. Shein touched on how and why a person would make the jump from prescription drugs that include opiates to heroin, which would not only quell the pain, but to illicit a euphoria. The program at Summa is designed to help the victims get off heroin dependency and assist with the withdrawal symptoms. Though the detoxification process is an uncomfortable one, the medical staff will prescribe medication to the patients, which will help flush the opiates out of the body. The timeline is about four to five days, then the patient will transition to the next level of care.

Wednesday, 24 August 2016 09:45

Aurora Mayor Looks Ahead With Geauga Lake Property

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The announcement came down last week that Geauga Lake’s Wildwater Kingdom would be shutting down after Labor Day. Wildwater Kingdom has been in existence since 2005, not long after SeaWorld vacated the premises.

Was this a surprise? Not to Ann Womer Benjamin, the mayor of Aurora. Womer Benjamin joined the Ray Horner Morning Show to discuss what is ahead with that property as far as development. She said Aurora is working in conjunction with Bainbridge and Cedar Fair on developing the surrounding area into a mix of retail and housing. Though Wildwater Kingdom was a good source of revenue, Aurora will not take much of a tax hit, as most waterpark jobs tend to be seasonal.

The Aurora mayor mentioned she was more upset with SeaWorld and Geauga Lake closing, which closed its doors in 2000 and 2007, respectively. However, she feels the prime real estate can be “redeveloped into something fantastic.”

In our continuing coverage of the heroin crisis in Summit County, we showcase some of the facilities in the area dedicated to helping those find the path to recovery. The Interval Brotherhood Home, or IBH, is a drug and alcohol recovery center located on S. Main Street near the Portage Lakes. The recovery center has been in operation since 1970, and Joe Rifici, an associate clinical director, joined the Ray Horner Morning Show to discuss what IBH does. Rifici spoke in depth about the recovery program, which helps patients find their spiritual side. Since 2009, when he joined IBH, Rifici says victims of heroin abuse has increased exponentially, mainly in the last year. He notices patients come from every background come through the doors, no matter the race or economic upbringing.

Tuesday, 23 August 2016 10:05

Day Two: Helping Addicts On Road To Recovery

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Terry Pluto is an award-winning sportswriter and columnist with the Plain Dealer, and is known across the region for his thoughts and analysis of the Browns, Cavaliers, and Indians. But what may not widely known is his work with prison inmates and addicts in their paths to recovery. Pluto joined the Ray Horner Morning Show to discuss his experience in dealing with struggling or recovering addicts, specifically heroin. In the decades he has been meeting with these victims, Pluto has seen the growth of heroin in these communities, no matter the racial or socioeconomic background. He believes heroin is deadlier than crack cocaine.

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