Virginia Alvino

Reporter & All Things Considered Host

Virginia joined WBOI in August of 2013. She works to report on often overlooked stories in the community, and uncover solutions as much as difficulties that we as a community face. Virginia began reporting out of the Statehouse in Salem, OR, and has reported for the Northwest News Network and Oregon Public Broadcasting. Virginia is now the local WBOI host of All Things Considered.

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News
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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News
6:00 am
Tue March 24, 2015

Extended Interview: Food Network Host Alton Brown

Alton Brown's live show includes lots of audience participation, demonstrations, and comedy.
Credit David Allen

Alton Brown has become an icon of the food world…but he’s not a celebrity chef. He’s more like a culinary raconteur.  

His first television show Good Eats started on a local PBS station, then ran for 14 seasons on the Food Network. The show used comedy to explain the science of cooking every day food at home.  

Since then, Brown has become the face of Food Network, hosting shows like Iron Chef America, Feasting on Asphalt, and now Cutthroat Kitchen. Brown is currently on his Edible Inevitable Tour, a live variety show coming to Fort Wayne this Thursday. 

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News
6:00 am
Fri March 13, 2015

Scholastic Program Works to Engage More Diverse Student Artists

"Mother and Child" by North Side High School senior Sawn Chan, won a gold key award in this year's regional Scholastic Art and Writing competition.
Credit Fort Wayne Museum of Art

The Scholastic Art and Writing program is the oldest source of recognition and scholarships for teen arts in the country. The Fort Wayne Museum of Art’s Scholastic program boasts tons of national awards and has been recognized as one of the best in the country.

But it often takes parents, teachers, and other artists working together to help young creators succeed.

WBOI’s Virginia Alvino reports on the people and program aiming to get more students from diverse backgrounds to participate in the competition.

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History
5:23 pm
Wed March 11, 2015

The Apple of Fort Wayne's Eye: John Chapman, 170 Years On

Many historians believe John Chapman's burial site is located at Johnny Appleseed Park in Fort Wayne.

Wednesday marks the 170th anniversary of the death of John Chapman – commonly referred to as Johnny Appleseed.

Chapman came to Fort Wayne in the 1830s, bringing with him the gospel and a bag of apple seeds. He hoped to make life more comfortable for the settlers by helping them start orchards.

Historian Tom Castaldi says the legend of Appleseed is still an important part of Fort Wayne’s identity.

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News
4:40 pm
Wed March 11, 2015

Vera Bradley's Earnings Continue to Drop

Credit Vera Bradley Inc.

Vera Bradley’s sales and profits continued to drop last year. The Fort Wayne-based retailer’s earnings were released Tuesday.

Vera Bradley reported net revenue of at about $500 million for fiscal year 2015– a more than two percent decline from the previous year. Store sales were down 20 percent, and shares fell to a record low.

The report comes one day after the company announced plans to close its New Haven factory which employs about 250 people, citing the increasing cost of domestic manufacturing.

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News
6:00 am
Wed March 11, 2015

The Three Rivers: Industry

Manufacturing is one of the largest sectors in Indiana’s economy. While it’s the source of many  jobs in the state, some claim it also contributes a lot of pollution to our waterways. But not in the  way you might think.

We continues our series "The Three Rivers" with a look at the state of water  regulations for industry in Indiana.

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News
6:00 am
Fri March 6, 2015

The Three Rivers: Levee Management

Map indicating ecological and infastructure priorities along the three rivers.
Credit Biohabitats

Fort Wayne has some grand plans for riverfront development. The City says the first step is to work on riparian buffers – specific areas of plants and soil along the river banks. This land, along with other rocky areas that separate the city from the water, create levees.

But not a lot is known about how to comprehensively improve the levees and environment along the rivers - yet.

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News
3:38 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Foellinger Foundation Grants $1.25 Million For Nonprofit Infrastructure

Credit Foellinger Foundation

The Foellinger Foundation is awarding more than a million dollars in grants to support three nonprofit organizations in Allen County. The announcement was made Thursday.

The grants from the private charitable foundation total $1,250,000. The United Way of Allen County will receive a one-time only grant of $400,000 to help support its operations and dozens of partner agencies.

The  organization has fallen short in its fundraising efforts for the past three years, and  says this assistance addresses short-term and long-term needs. 

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News
6:00 am
Wed March 4, 2015

The Three Rivers: Vegetation

Betsy Yankowiak identifies vegetation on a riparian buffer along the Maumee River.
Credit Virginia Alvino / WBOI News

The banks along Fort Wayne’s rivers serve multiple purposes. Vegetation controls erosion, and helps filter water. Other impermeable areas help with runoff, and  control flooding. We continue our series "The Three Rivers" with an  explainer on an important, but often overlooked feature: riparian buffers.  

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