90.5 WESA's Essential Pittsburgh

Essential Pittsburgh airs weekdays from noon to 1 p.m. and is repeated at 8 p.m.
Paul Guggenheimer

Essential Pittsburgh is a locally produced program from 90.5 WESA dedicated to developing a deep, ongoing exploration of critical issues affecting Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania, as well as featuring community leaders and newsmakers in the arts, sciences, technology, business, healthcare, government and education.

  • Call (412) 246-2002 from noon to 1 p.m. weekdays to participate in the discussion.
  • Dial (412) 256-8783 to leave a question or comment before or after the show.
  • Follow #EPLive on Twitter or tweet your question to @esspgh.
  • Continue the conversation on our station Facebook page.
  • Subscribe to the podcast in iTunes.
  • What stories are we missing? Send your thoughts to esspgh@wesa.fm 
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Essential Pittsburgh
9:00 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Downtown Pittsburgh Living: From 9 to 5 to Full-Fledged Neighborhood

Downtown Pittsburgh is becoming more of a neighborhood, as more people move there to live, not just work.
Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA News

It’s often said Pittsburgh is a city of neighborhoods. There are the bustling neighborhoods of Oakland and Squirrel Hill, the struggling neighborhood of Homewood, and the transitioning neighborhoods in between. Then there’s a shadow neighborhood. Some people call it the Golden Triangle, some call it the business district, and others call it home. 90.5 WESA reporter, Deanna Garcia looks at the present and the future of Downtown living.

Essential Pittsburgh
9:00 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Speaking Volumes on Essential Pittsburgh: Alex Johnson

Alex Johnson
Credit Josh Raulerson/90.5 WESA

It may not be Hogwarts, but Community College of Allegheny County president and Harry Potter fan Alex Johnson is passionate about his school. He shares his reading recommendations with 90.5 WESA Morning Edition Host Josh Raulerson.

Essential Pittsburgh
9:00 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Women and the Business of Sports Management

Rebecca Harris is our weekly business contributor
Credit Rebecca Harris / Chatham Center for Women's Entrepreneurship

While Hilary Clinton declared the glass ceiling for women seeking the highest political office has 18-million cracks, some fields like pro sports remain a boys club. Contributor Rebecca Harris looks at the business of  women in sports management.Want to learn more about the sports management industry? Becca Harris recommends Women in Sports and Events and sports management Networking

Essential Pittsburgh
1:42 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

What About Bob? Sports Talk with Bob Dvorchak

Each Monday our sports contributor Bob Dvorchak weighs in on Pittsburgh sports news highlights.

 

   The Penguins are at the halfway mark of their lockout abbreviated season, Pitt basketball is going into the last Big East tournament and will James Harrison remain a Steeler? Our sports guy Bob Dvorchak weighs in.

Essential Pittsburgh
1:40 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Training for Disaster: A New College Course Teaches Humanitarian Aid

Relief workers unload bottles of water in Gonaives, Haiti. Find out what it takes to be a humanitarian aid worker.
Credit Marion Doss

  

  Beginning this summer La Roche College will offer a first of its kind - two week training program for people interested in working in Humanitarian and Emergency Aid. We'll talk with the program's instructors Jeff Ritter, Department Chair of Communication and Astrid Kersten, Professor of Management. Then Angela Garcia, Deputy Director of Global Links medical relief and development program talks about the real world application of this training.

Essential Pittsburgh
1:28 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

City Council News This Week

The weekly city council update from reporter Noah Brode.

 

   90.5 WESA reporter Noah Brode gives us a look at this week's city council agenda which focuses on police bureau business. We'll talk about police administrative financing policies, minimum staffing requirements and new gunshot detection hardware.

Essential Pittsburgh
9:57 am
Fri March 8, 2013

Patrick Dowd: What's Next for the City?

City Councilman Patrick Dowd discusses police force improvements council members would like to see in the wake of former Chief Harper's resignation.
Credit Patrick Dowd / Facebook

Pittsburgh City Councilman Patrick Dowd discusses police force improvements council members would like to see and what Mayor Ravenstahl's decision not to run for reelection means for the city.

Essential Pittsburgh
9:00 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

Local Goodness: Maple Syrup Season is Here

Grades of maple syrup can range from light to dark coloring, which dictates the strength of the maple flavor.
Credit Wikipedia

When one thinks of pure maple syrup, Vermont often comes to mind. However, Pennsylvania's maple season is also highly anticipated for those with a sweet tooth. Our local food contributor Rhonda Schuldt shares some maple syrup cooking tips and talks about the abundance of local festivals.

Celebrate Maple Season at a local festival:

March 16 & 17 - 10th Annual NW Pennsylvania Maple Association Taste & Tour Weekend in the Erie area 

March 16, 17, 20-24 - 66th Annual PA Maple Festival in Somerset, PA 

April 6 & 7 - The Beaver County Maple Syrup Festival at Brady's Run Park in Beaver, PA

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Essential Pittsburgh
9:00 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

Medicaid Expansion & Women in PA

When it comes to Medicaid Expansion, what's the potential impact on lower-income women?
Credit Ben Ostrowsky / Flickr

As more Republican governor's adopt the Medicaid Expansion, Governor Corbett is under more pressure to adopt the program. We'll discuss the impact of the Medicaid Expansion program on Pennsylvania women and low-income families with Judy Waxman, Vice President for Health Policy and Reproductive Rights for the National Women's Law Center.

Essential Pittsburgh
9:00 pm
Wed March 6, 2013

The New Girl Visits the National Cherry Blossom Festival

Spring has almost sprung. Each year the National Cherry Blossom Festival brightens the winter blues.
Credit Cordelia / Flickr

One of the must see events of the season is the blooming of the cherry blossoms in our nation’s capital. However, if you plan to see them you’d better act fast. Travel contributor Elaine Labalme tells us what you need to know in order to see the blossoms at their peak.

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Essential Pittsburgh
9:00 pm
Wed March 6, 2013

What's Next for the Sequester? NPR Business Editor Weighs In

Just how bad have federal budget cuts been since last week, and how bad are they likely to be going forward?
Credit Doby Photography / NPR

The deadline for federal budget cuts, known as the sequester, has come and gone. So what's next? NPR Senior Business Editor Marilyn Geewax joins us to discuss the impact of the sequestration.

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Essential Pittsburgh
9:00 pm
Wed March 6, 2013

Councilman & Candidate Bill Peduto Makes His Case For Mayor

Councilman Peduto talks about his plans for Pittsburgh.
Credit BillPeduto.com

Last week Mayor Luke Ravenstahl announced that he will not run for re-election. Councilman and mayoral candidate Bill Peduto joins us to talk about how he would like to build on Ravenstahl's legacy, what changes need to be made, and how to move the city forward.

Essential Pittsburgh
11:33 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Gideon v. Wainwright: 50 Years Later

Clarence Earl Gideon was a poor drifter accused in Florida of felony theft. He couldn't afford a defense attorney and his case resulted in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision Gideon v. Wainwright
Credit Wikipedia

In 1963 the Supreme Court ruled that the Constitution requires the states to provide defense attorneys to criminal defendants charged with serious offenses who cannot afford their own lawyer. We'll look at the impact of this Supreme Court decision with Pitt Law Professor David Harris. Read more about this landmark case.

Essential Pittsburgh
11:32 am
Wed March 6, 2013

The Arlen Specter Collection

Senator Arlen Specter held office in Pennsylvania for more than 50 years, including 7 years as Philadelphia District Attorney from 1965-1973.
Credit Former Senator Specter Website / Wikipedia

This week, the University of Pittsburgh entered into an agreement with Philadelphia University, which owns the archive of the late US Senator Arlen Specter. His massive archive of papers, photos, multimedia, and memorabilia reflect his more than 50-years in office. The archives will be housed for the next 30 years at the University of Pittsburgh Archives Service Center in Point Breeze. University of Pittsburgh Assistant Librarian, Michael Dabrishus has been tasked with combing through and maintaining the collection.

Essential Pittsburgh
11:31 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Thurgood: The One-Man Play

Thurgood Marshall photographed in 1967 in the Oval Office
Credit Yoichi Robert / Wikipedia

In 1967, Thurgood Marshall became the first African-American Supreme Court Justice of the United States. Before that Marshall was known for his successful arguments before the Supreme Court as an attorney, in particular for his victory in Brown v. Board of Education. The one-man play Thurgood, comes to the Pittsburgh Public Theater this month. It tells his life story: from humble beginnings in Baltimore, to landmark civil rights legislation, and his rise to the highest court in the land. We’re joined by Montae Russell, a Pittsburgh native, playing the role of Thurgood Marshall.

Stress
10:49 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Mental Health on Campus: A Culture of Stress?

Americans aged 29 and younger are more stressed than previous generations. So what can be done?
Credit Daniel Epstein / Flickr

After a Carnegie Mellon University sophomore committed suicide last December, CMU is looking at ways to support students mental health. CMU Dean of Student Affairs Gina Casalegno, Student Body President Will Weiner and CMU graduate Katie Chironis join us to talk about the "culture of stress" in colleges and universities.

Essential Pittsburgh
10:44 am
Tue March 5, 2013

Speaking Volumes on Essential Pittsburgh: Don Block

Greater Pittsburgh Literary Council Executive Director Don Block: "One of the reasons you read is to fill in gaps in your education."
Credit Josh Raulerson / 90.5 WESA

Don Block runs the Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council, and practices what he preaches. He talk's with 90.5 WESA Morning Edition Host Josh Raulerson about his personal reading selections.

Essential Pittsburgh
10:36 am
Tue March 5, 2013

The History of Women's History Month

Business contributor Rebecca Harris connects Women's History Month to today's women in business.
Credit Rebecca Harris / Chatham Center for Women's Entrepreneurship

Women’s History Month had its origins as a national celebration in 1981. Business contributor Rebecca Harris, Director of Chatham University Center For Women's Entrepreneurship looks at the history behind this celebration and what it means for women in business. Find out more about Women's History Month events in Pittsburgh.


Essential Pittsburgh
10:32 am
Mon March 4, 2013

What About Bob?

Each Monday our sports contributor Bob Dvorchak weighs in on Pittsburgh sports news highlights.

Our sports guy Bob Dvorchak discusses the Pitt Panthers newly released football schedule, the Penguins slump and the opening of the Pirates exhibition season.

Essential Pittsburgh
10:26 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Energy Drinks

Can you really find energy in a can?
Credit Matteo Paciotti / Flickr

You can’t help but notice the amount of products on the market to help you fight that tired feeling. Drinks like Red Bull, Monster and five-hour energy shots are supposed to give you a much-needed jolt. But, how safe are these products? We’ll find out from Leslie Bonci director of sports nutrition at the UPMC Center for Sports Medicine.

Essential Pittsburgh
10:12 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Lessons for Living Well

If you could pass along 5 life lessons what would they be?
Credit Meg Hourihan / Flickr

Do we learn all we ever really need to know in kindergarten? We’ll discuss five principles for living, loving and playing well with others with psychologist Robert Schwartz, President of Cognitive Dynamic Therapy Associates.

Essential Pittsburgh
7:28 pm
Fri March 1, 2013

City Council Outlook March 4th, 2013

The weekly city council update from reporter Noah Brode
Credit 90.5 WESA / 90.5 WESA

  90.5 WESA reporter Noah Brode gives us the week's outlook for City Council and talks about reaction to Mayor Ravenstahl's announcement that he won't run for reelection.

Essential Pittsburgh
7:08 pm
Fri March 1, 2013

Mayor Ravenstahl's Not Running

Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl meets with reporters Friday morning as he announces he will not run for reelection.
Credit Deanna Garcia

We'll check in with 90.5 WESA Deanna Garcia for the latest update on Mayor Ravenstahl's political future.

Essential Pittsburgh
9:30 pm
Thu February 28, 2013

Managing the Media

Bob Oltmanns, President of OPR Group, LLC, an independent public relations consultancy talks about the PR protocol for political figures in crisis situations. What's the best way to overcome an adversarial relationship with the press? And Duquesne University Law Professor Joseph Sabino Mistick, talks about his experiences as a former deputy mayor.

Essential Pittsburgh
9:30 pm
Thu February 28, 2013

Versailles '73 Documentary An American Fashion Revolution in France

40 years ago, the Palace of Versailles in France, hosted a fashion event that made the world take notice of American fashion design.
Credit Mkonikkara / Wikipedia

In 1973, five American fashion designers and five French designers came together for a Paris runway fundraiser. That fundraiser turned into a competition, and an industry changing event in fashion history. The documentary film, Versailles '73 looks at how that Paris show brought African Americans to the forefront of fashion.  Filmmaker Debra Riley Draper comes to the August Wilson Center this weekend for a screening of the award-winning documentary.

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