Midday Magazine | WAMC

Midday Magazine

Weekdays, 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.; Weekends, 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.

WAMC's award-winning daily news magazine brings listeners the latest in local, national and world news. Join Jim Levulis each weekday for the latest. The weekend edition is hosted by Lucas Willard. The work of the WAMC News team is complemented each day with news and features from the BBC and Stardate. Midday Magazine also offers a comprehensive regional weather summary and a range of commentators who span the political spectrum. Highlights from the WAMC Listener Comment Line are usually aired on Friday's edition of Midday Magazine.

Community Foundation of Western Mass.

      A fund set up just a few weeks ago to help nonprofits in Hampden, Hampshire, and Franklin counties in western Massachusetts has grown to $3 million.

The City of Saratoga Springs has advanced a long-awaited project to locate a fire/EMS facility on the city’s east side. 

The Williamstown Theatre Festival logo - the festival's name in white block letters on a blue backdrop
Williamstown Theatre Festival

Broadway will be dark until at least June 7th, and the COVID-19 outbreak is leading to a spate of cancellations among Berkshire County’s cultural institutions, too. Jacob’s Pillow called off its summer season for the first time in its 88-year history, the Chester Theatre Company cancelled three of its four scheduled shows, and Barrington Stage Company is moving to a “wait and see” model. Whatever happens, the county’s tourist-based economy is in for yet another shock.

On Tuesday, the Williamstown Theatre Festival joined that list with an announcement that it won’t put on its summer season – at least, not on stage. WAMC spoke with the festival’s artistic director, Mandy Greenfield, to find out what happens next.

Paul Caiano's Midday Forecast

13 hours ago
Paul Caiano

Newschannel 13 meteorologist Paul Caiano delivers the Midday Weather Summary for Wednesday, April 8, 2020.

Burlington City Hall
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Monday evening was the first meeting of the new city council elected by Burlington, Vermont residents on Town Meeting Day in March.  The new council met electronically to elect a new council president, conduct COVID-19 related business and hear Mayor Miro Weinberger’s annual State of the City address.

 Index of Consumer Sentiment

A new survey shows the COVID-19 pandemic has dealt consumer confidence across New York state a severe blow.

Executive Director of the Irish American Heritage Museum Elizabeth Stack.
Jackie Orchard / WAMC

With non-essential businesses shut down through the end of the month at least, the Irish American Heritage Museum in Albany is using the time to renovate.

(from left to right) Dr. Karla Vermeulen, Deputy Director; Dr. Amy Nitza, Director; and Cassandre Surinon, Special Programs Manager, the Institute for Disaster Mental Health at SUNY New Paltz.
Courtesy of the Institute for Disaster Mental Health at SUNY New Paltz

The Institute for Disaster Mental Health at SUNY New Paltz has put out a Psychological First Aid & Stress Management toolkit. The strategies are to help faculty, staff, students and others during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jane McManus: Not A Game

Apr 7, 2020

This Saturday, as the toll of coronavirus deaths in the United States approached 10,000, President Trump called together a meeting of sports league commissioners.

Paul Caiano's Midday Forecast

Apr 7, 2020
Paul Caiano

Newschannel 13 meteorologist Paul Caiano delivers the Midday Weather Summary for Tuesday, April 7, 2020. 

The Williamstown Commons logo

Since the Williamstown Commons nursing home in Williamstown, Massachusetts reported its first case of COVID-19 on March 24, 10 residents have died and 35 more have tested positive for coronavirus. On Monday, the remaining 75 of the center’s roughly 130 residents were tested for the virus. Now, the company that manages the facility says there are five positive cases at another of its centers, Fairview Commons in Great Barrington, 45 miles south of Williamstown. WAMC spoke with Berkshire Healthcare Systems Vice President of Communications Lisa Gaudet Monday about the company’s response to the outbreak.

A hospital room and bed

        Health care leaders in western Massachusetts are continuing to prepare for a surge in coronavirus patients.

Congressman Antonio Delgado (NY-19) hold COVID-19-focused telephone town hall, March 20, 2020
Courtesy of the Office of Congressman Antonio Delgado

New York Congressman Antonio Delgado held a telephone town hall Friday. The Democrat from the 19th District was joined by a few others to help address questions and concerns about the pandemic.

COVID-19 was first identified in December 2019 in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China and has now been detected in 37 locations across the globe, including in the U.S., according to the CDC.
Composite Image by Dave Lucas (WAMC / cdc.gov)

New Yorkers say COVID-19 and the resulting "pause" is having a significant impact on their daily lives, according to a new poll.

Jacob Avery
Avery for Plattsburgh / Facebook

Among the misconceptions about the coronavirus is it only affects older people. But it can infect people of all ages. 33-year-old Plattsburgh resident Jacob Avery is cautioning people to take the warnings of health officials more seriously. He and his partner are at home in quarantine recovering from COVID-19. Avery, who is seeking a seat on the Plattsburgh Common Council, tells WAMC North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley he doesn’t know how he contracted the virus even though he tried to meticulously follow health advisories.

During this last week, a barrel of oil was cheaper than a pint of beer in Canada falling below $5.00. Canadian oil is cheaper than in the United States, but our crude is of somewhat better quality, nonetheless, oil has fallen dramatically well over 60% since the beginning of the year.

Paul Caiano's Midday Forecast

Apr 6, 2020
Paul Caiano

Newschannel 13 meteorologist Paul Caiano delivers the Midday Weather Summary for Monday, March 6, 2020.

Campus President Dr. Havidán Rodríguez speaking to state troopers at the UAlbany COVID-19 testing drive-thru.
Jackie Orchard / WAMC

With students sent home and faculty teaching remotely, the University at Albany has converted a campus parking lot into a coronavirus testing site.

NewsChannel 13 Meteorologist Reid Kisselback provides the forecast for Sunday, April 5th. 

COVID-19 Diagram
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The coronavirus pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the United States and the world.

Russell Brown
Photo provided

Straining broadband internet and parents alike, students are now taking classes from home as schools remain closed due to the coronavirus. It’s not clear students will return at all this school year. Teachers have also had to adapt, bringing their instruction online. 

NewsChannel 13 Meteorologist Reid Kisselback provides the Regional Midday Weather Summary for April 4th, 2020. 

Ralph Gardner Jr: Lots Of Time For Chores

Apr 4, 2020
A selection of Gardner family memorabilia to be filed
Ralph Gardner Jr

I’m reluctant to describe the coronavirus as having a silver lining. But I am finding time to get chores done that I doubted I’d accomplish in this or several subsequent lifetimes. They present such a plethora of opportunities that I’m not sure where one starts; perhaps by listing them. I’m thinking of them as indoor and outdoor – those that can be accomplished when it’s bright and sunny and those that can wait until rain or cold drive you inside your home.

A sign that reads "Entering Windsor"
ToddC4176 / wikimedia.org

Guidance from officials was brief and firm: school and most work has to be done from home during the pandemic. But some of Berkshire County’s smallest communities are feeling the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak through their ongoing struggles with internet access.

Metro-North President Discusses COVID-19 Response

Apr 3, 2020
MTA Metro-North Railroad President Catherine Rinaldi
Courtesy of MTA Metro-North Railroad

Weekly ridership on Metro-North Railroad has plummeted in the last three weeks amid the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting state restrictions. Essential workers have plenty of room to spread out on any of Metro-North’s east and west of the Hudson River lines. MTA Metro-North Railroad President Catherine Rinaldi says recent measures have included suspending cash on board and encouraging the use of e-tickets. She spoke with WAMC’s Allison Dunne.

Rogovoy Report4/3/20

Apr 3, 2020

Last Friday, Bob Dylan recently released a new song, “Murder Most Foul.” It’s Dylan’s first new song in eight years, and clocking in at 17 minutes, it’s also his longest song ever. You can hear it on all the major streaming services, and what you’ll hear is a spoken-word surreal fever dream about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. It’s not only a work of epic genius – formally, structurally, and otherwise – but it veritably demands a close reading in order to comprehend fully what the Nobel Prize-winner hath wrought.

Here are this week's highlights from the WAMC Listener Comment Line.

Paul Caiano's Midday Forecast

Apr 3, 2020
Paul Caiano

Newschannel 13 meteorologist Garett Argianas delivers the Midday Weather Summary for Friday, April 3, 2020.

A sign hangs from a brick arch against a grey sky
Josh Landes / WAMC

The COVID-19 crisis is affecting services across Berkshire County. For Michelle Lopez, executive director of the Berkshire Immigrant Center, the pandemic and the resulting shutdown are making it even harder to provide aid to one of the county’s most vulnerable populations. Lopez spoke with WAMC about supporting the immigrant community during the pandemic.

The Massachusetts Democratic Party is expected to cancel the party convention scheduled for May 30th because of the coronavirus pandemic.