Lead Stories

Arts & Culture
4:15 pm
Fri March 27, 2015

Memorial Park Middle School Keeping Music Alive in the Classroom

Sarh Beutel finds that music affords Memorial Park Middle School students huge benefits in all subjects.
Credit Scott Maack/Memorial Park Middle School

This March marks the 30th anniversary of Music in Our Schools Month. While Fort Wayne has a great tradition of school music programs, tight budgets and other factors can make it difficult for teachers and students to keep the melodies coming.

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4:43 pm
Thu March 26, 2015

Henry Advocates an Exception for The Deck

Rendering shows potential expansion of The Deck on the Saint Mary's River in Fort Wayne.
Credit Don Hall's Family of Restaurants and Hoch Associates

Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry is asking the State to allow The Deck, an outdoor restaurant and bar overlooking the Saint Mary’s River, to reopen and expand as  planned. 

The Indiana State Department of Health claims The Deck at Hall’s Gas House does  not comply with the state food code. The law doesn’t allow the type of open-air bar  The Deck has operated for more than ten years. Any food or drink production  needs walls, which even mobile food trucks have. 

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4:14 pm
Thu March 26, 2015

Holcomb Announces Bid to Replace Coats

Eric Holcomb announced his candidacy for Dan Coats' Senate seat Thursday.
Credit Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Just two days after U.S. Senator Dan Coats announced he won’t seek reelection next year, a contender  is throwing his hat into the ring. 

Eric Holcomb steered former Governor Mitch Daniels’ 2008 reelection campaign, led the Indiana  Republican Party and most recently served as State Chief of Staff to Senator Dan Coats. 

But Thursday,  Holcomb announced a personal first: a run for office.

“And that’s why today, ladies and gentlemen, I’m proud, I’m excited," says Holcomb, "to announce my candidacy for the United States Senate.” 

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Politics & Government
4:03 pm
Thu March 26, 2015

Pence Signs Controversial RFRA Measure into Law

Gov. Mike Pence signed the controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law Thursday. Opponents worry the measure could be used to sanction discrimination against LGBT Hoosiers and others.
Credit Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Governor Mike Pence says concerns about the Religious Freedom Restoration Act come from a misunderstanding of the law, for which he at least partly blames the media.  Pence signed the controversial bill into law Thursday.

RFRA establishes a judicial test that courts will use to decide when the government can infringe on a person’s religious beliefs and practices. 

Many groups say they’re concerned it will be used to sanction discrimination, particularly against LGBT Hoosiers. 

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9:23 am
Thu March 26, 2015

Changing Weather Means Tapping into a Sweet Season

Maple syrup season only comes around once a year, and for a very short time. The production process is labor-intensive, and it can take 35-40 gallons of sap to produce one gallon of syrup.
Credit Courtesy / ACRES Land Trust

When late winter and early spring come around, it means just one thing for those at the sugar bush stands scattered across Northeast Indiana: it’s syrup season.

The tradition of tapping sugar maple trees for their sweet sap predates the European arrival in North America, and while some of the technology has changed, the process remains largely the same (and the product completely delicious).

But it takes a lot of work – and a lot of help from the trees and the weather – to turn the natural energy stored in maples into the syrups and candies you’ll find on store shelves.

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Politics & Government
3:36 pm
Wed March 25, 2015

Committee Decision Delays Implementation of "Baby Boxes"

Indiana Rep. Casey Cox (left) and Sen. Jim Merritt (right) spoke before an Indiana Senate committee Wednesday.
Credit Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Senate lawmakers Wednesday added a hurdle to a bill that would have allowed newborn incubators, or “baby boxes” to be placed at Safe Haven sites.  The legislature would now have to pass another bill next year to authorize the boxes.

Baby boxes are installed into the walls special locations – like hospitals and police and fire stations. They’re meant to provide mothers an extra layer of anonymity when dropping off unwanted newborns. 

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Politics & Government
3:10 pm
Wed March 25, 2015

RFRA Opponents Say Measure Could Be Bad for Business

Gov. Mike Pence said in a statement Tuesday he would sign the Religous Freedom Restoration Act when it came to his desk. But some Indiana business owners are asking Pence to reconsider.
Credit Courtesy / State of Indiana

After clearing both chambers of the General Assembly, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act -- or RFRA -- is on its way to Governor Mike Pence for his signature. Pence has said he intends to sign the law, but some businesses and organizations are asking him to reconsider.

After RFRA passed the House, Pence released a statement saying he supported the measure and looked forward to signing it when it reaches his desk.

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3:05 pm
Wed March 25, 2015

City Announces 2015 Infrastructure Projects

2015 infrastructure map.
Credit City of Fort Wayne

The City of Fort Wayne is investing more than $20 million in  infrastructure throughout the city this year. The projects were announced Wednesday. 

The projects are all about transportation. More than $20 million will go towards street, sidewalk and trail improvements throughout Fort Wayne. The City evaluates the conditions of each neighborhood each year and gives them a  rating in order to determine which projects should be prioritized. 

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The Three Rivers
6:09 am
Wed March 25, 2015

The Three Rivers: Agriculture

Mike Werling examines the soil health in his corn crop. Signs of health include the crumbling texture, earthworms, and live roots from cover crops.
Credit Virginia Alvino / WBOI News

The Great Lakes form the largest group of freshwater lakes on Earth.

Last August, blue green algae blooms in Lake Erie caused hundreds of thousands of people to go without water. The cause – nutrients, especially phosphorous, in the waterways.  Many say unregulated runoff from agriculture was partly to blame.

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5:47 pm
Tue March 24, 2015

Coats Will Not Seek Re-election in 2016

Sen. Dan Coats announced Tuesday he would not seek re-election in 2016.
Credit Courtesy / Dan Coats

U.S. Senator Dan Coats Tuesday announced he will not run for re-election in 2016.

Coats had spoken in recent months about whether to run again, noting that how Congress functioned with Republican majorities would play a major role. 

In a video statement Tuesday, the Hoosier Senator said choosing not to run was not an easy decision. 

“While I believe I am well-positioned to run a successful campaign for another six-year term, I have concluded that the time has come to pass this demanding job to the next generation of leaders,” he said.

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