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Should Charlottesville switch to an elected school board? Currently, the City Council appoints the seven members of the school board, but a group of concerned parents has managed to get a city-wide referendum on the ballot to ask citizens if an elected board should be adopted. On Saturday September 17, the Charlottesville Democratic Party held a debate on the subject at the offices of the Jefferson Area Board of Aging. Moderated by Assistant U.S Attorney Timothy Heaphy, the panel consisted of current school board member Muriel Wiggins, City Councilman Kevin Lynch, U-V-A History Professor Jeffrey Rossman, Albemarle County School Board member Steve Koleszar, and U-VA Urban and Environmental Planning Professor William Lucy. The program runs for an hour and a half.

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A Culinary Independence: Jefferson for July 4th – Monticello Podcasts – Eat Feed’s Anne Bramley talks with Beth Cheuk, Justin Sarafin, and Damon Lee Fowler about the creation of the new book Dining at Monticello.

 

Who lives and works here in Charlottesville? Answering that question is one of the goals of the work we post here to the site. To that end, we bring you essays from people like Deepak Singh, and podcast community radio programs like the Sunday Morning Wakeup Call. The idea, we think, is to help expand the public square by giving people a forum to be heard.

With that in mind, we thought we’d start by attending a party thrown by a group that was created in 1999 to help people in their twenties and thirties find a reason to stay in town. Ever since, the Charlottesville Young Professionals has held hundreds of social events to give people the chance to meet each other. On a recent evening in late August, I drove to McIntire Park where the group was holding its annual membership party, and first spoke with the group’s outgoing president.

This podcast is sponsored by Jim Duncan of Jim Duncan Real Estate. Get insights on the Charlottesville housing market by reading Jim’s blog on Central Virginia real estate.

 

A Major intersection in Lucknow

CPN correspondent Deepak Singh recently got back from a trip to Lucknow, and is still settling in to his life back here in Charlottesville. Late last month we brought you his first essay which described his first few moments back in the country. This week, Deepak tells the story of what it was like being back in India, a place that has changed rapidly since he left two years ago for Charlottesville. Follow Deepak Singh on Facebook and Twitter.

 

It’s been a week now since Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast, but the mass exodus of people from New Orleans and other afflicted areas continues, and will continue for months to come as many in Louisiana are told to stay away from their homes for at least a month. Ralph Chester is one of this new diaspora, on the road since Sunday with his wife and two teenage boys. The family’s home is three miles outside of New Orleans in an area called River Ridge, in Jefferson Parish, but they’re not going to be back any time soon. So, they’re settling in as temporary residents of Charlottesville, along with 87 special status students at the University of Virginia, as well as other families and individuals with a connection to Central Virginia. I spoke with Ralph on September 5 in the CPN studio. He says this isn’t the first time he’s had to evacuate his family in the face of what he describes as “a bowling ball thrown by God.”

Now, how can you help?

The Starlight Express luxury bus will be taking at least one of its buses to a refugee staging area in Mississippi on Tuesday, September 6. If you hear this before then, call Starlight at 295-0782, 434-295-0782. They’re looking for donations of all kinds of things, and also might be looking for places for people to stay. Call 295-0782 when you hear this to find out how you can help.

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