Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Take VPR Home For The Holidays!

Photo courtesy Dominicotine via Flickr

We hope you'll make VPR a part of your holiday celebration this season! Our special programming this year features old favorites and new features, including:

Handel's Messiah

Harry Christophers leads Handel & Haydn Society Orchestra and Chorus from Symphony Hall in Boston on Thursday, December 20 from 8-11 p.m. on VPR Classical.

Slavic Wonders: Christmas with the Rose Ensemble
Listen for gems from the libraries and monasteries of Krakow, Prague, and Moscow on Friday, December 21 at 8 p.m. on VPR Classical.

Favor Johnson

Commentator Willem Lange’s story has been a holiday tradition on VPR for more than a decade. It’s the heart-warming story of a Vermont farmer, his dog Hercules, homemade fruitcake, and the real spirit of Christmas. Enjoy it on Christmas Eve at 7:49 a.m. on VPR News, or you can download the story here to enjoy with your family whenever you like.

A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols

Listen Christmas Eve from 10 a.m. - noon on VPR Classical for this live concert featuring the 30-voice King's College Choir.

Song Travels With Michael Feinstein

Feinstein interviews well known performers about their life and work. You'll hear from Neal Sedaka, David Hyde Pierce, Riki Lee Jones and Cheyenne Jackson on Christmas Eve at 7 p.m. on VPR News.

Paul Winter's Winter Solstice Celebration

Enjoy this concert live from the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in New York City on Christmas Eve from 9-11 p.m. on VPR News.

Traveling for the holidays? Take VPR with you by downloading the VPR app for your iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, or Android.

You'll find our full holiday schedule here. From all of us at VPR, we wish you joy and peace in this season.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Public Post: Community Resource & News Tool

In 2011 VPR launched Public Post, an initiative to find local news stories and trends in the selectboard meeting minutes from Vermont cities and towns. The goal was to develop a new digital source of city and town news from around Vermont. We spent the past year developing a working prototype and trying to prove the model, and we believe we've created a resource that has value as a community service and a journalism tool.

Public Post has evolved into a site with 3 primary features: to facilitate the browsing, commenting, and sharing of public documents from VT cities and towns; to enable searching those documents by town and across the state; and to use the tools of the internet to expose that index to crowd-assisted and computer-assisted reporting. Over the past year, our reporters have used the Post to find relevant local stories in Vermont cities and towns. Sometimes they use it to research stories, sometimes they use it to find new stories. Sometimes, they find stories that take off on social media and end up on NPR.

We believe there is more potential in the Post, and we're positioning it to grow. We're now partnering with startup NearbyFYI to use their automated crawler and other web tools to index the documents and power many features of the Post. As of this blogpost, the public meeting minutes of 79 Vermont cities and towns are flowing automatically into Public Post via NearbyFYI, making them available to browse, search, and analyze.

Going forward we're working to expand the number of Vermont towns and public documents included in the site. Most importantly, VPR News will continue to use the Post to source and research more local Vermont stories and issues. We encourage other Vermont reporters, bloggers, local officials, and interested citizens to check out Public Post and use it as another tool for finding out what's going on in towns around Vermont. If you spot an interesting news item in the documents, let us know.

If you have a suggestion or question, or if you spot an error, send us an email. If you want to see your town on Public Post, or you're wondering why it's not there now, send us an email. If you're working on a similar data project, we'd love to hear from you.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Thank You For A Successful 2012!

2012 has been an incredible year! On behalf of all of us at Vermont Public Radio, I just wanted to say thank you for listening to and supporting VPR this year. In my 2012 President’s Letter, I share some of the accomplishments that listener support made possible over the past year, including:
Click here to read the full letter.

None of these achievements would have been possible without your passionate participation in all its forms - listening, feedback, and financial support. Thank you for being a part of this community.

I hope you’ll make a year-end gift to Vermont Public Radio today to pay for another great year of news, music, and meaningful engagement.

I wish you the best for the season and all of us at VPR look forward to serving you in 2013.

Friday, December 7, 2012

VPR Welcomes New Members To Its Board Of Directors

Vermont Public Radio has elected three new members to its Board of Directors to serve three-year terms:

Scott McArdle of Starksboro Scott McArdle of Starksboro is a Senior Philanthropic Advisor for the Vermont Community Foundation in Middlebury, Vermont and formerly served as the Foundation’s Vice President for Donor Relations. Scott has been with the Foundation since 2001. Scott also serves on the board and is former staff director for the High Meadows Fund, a foundation within the Vermont Community Foundation focused on reducing reliance on fossil fuels, improving the sustainability of  Vermont’s food system, and promoting smart land use. He has also served as staff and board member for several other charitable foundations and funds within the Community Foundation.

April Cornell of Burlington was born in Montreal and moved to Vermont in the early 1990s. She is an artist, designer, and businesswoman whose colorful apparel and home furnishings are distributed throughout North America. She spends much of her time at her factory in New Delhi, where her products are produced. She is involved with an NGO called The Giving World Foundation, which sponsors projects through an umbrella organization, Concern India. These projects primarily support formal and informal schools for first generation learners in India. April is a trustee emeritus of Champlain College where she served on the board for 11 years.

Elizabeth Glenshaw of Lyme, New Hampshire is Clean Yield Group's Managing Director. Elizabeth started her career creating a community-banking program for a Vermont bank that focused on ensuring access to credit for low-wealth communities. Subsequently, she worked for two SRI asset-management companies, managing portfolios for clients who wished to integrate their social values with their financial objectives. Elizabeth's last position was with the Calvert Foundation, which assists non-profits in low-wealth and impoverished communities. Elizabeth is president of the board of the Vermont Community Loan Fund, serves as an advisor to People’s United Bank (formerly Chittenden Bank), and is vice president of the board of the Upper Valley Rowing Foundation. She also has an advisory seat with the Upper Valley Region of New Hampshire Charitable Trust and has served on the board of the Social Investment Forum.

"We are delighted to have these distinguished individuals join our Board," said VPR President and CEO Robin Turnau. "VPR is fortunate to have such a dedicated group of volunteers who provide expertise, counsel, and guidance to our organization.”

Board members are selected for their commitment to the mission and goals of VPR, and for their expertise in various fields. More information about VPR’s Board of Directors can be found at

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Is The VPR iPhone App Crashing?

A number of listeners reported that the VPR iPhone App was working for them but the latest version is crashing without playing.

We reported the issue to our partners,, and they quickly located and resolved an issue that should address the problem. A new version of the App has been submitted to the App Store and is awaiting approval. Once it's approved, you'll receive an notification on your iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch that the update is available.

Thanks for your reports. The App has been working for most listeners, so we might not have found this without your emails and tweets. If you ever have a problem with the App, or any of our digital services, please report it via

Jonathan Butler
VPR Digital Services

Updated 12/7/2012
The lastest version of the VPR iPhone App (v1.11) was approved and is available for update from the App Store. Please update the App and let us know if you still have trouble.