What Parts Of Your Thanksgiving Meal Are Genetically Modified?

7 hours ago
Dan Tentler / Flickr

Watching what we eat during the holiday season usually refers to how much we’re consuming. But if you’re a person who’s concerned with food issues, you might have a trickier time spotting genetically engineered foods. The U.S. is not among the 60 countries that require the labeling of GMOs. So to give you a little help on what part of your Thanksgiving plate might be genetically engineered, the Allegheny Front’s Julie Grant decided to look into the issue. Here’s a breakdown of some traditional holiday foods to pay special attention to.

On the holiday plate

Lessons Learned From Raising A 43-Pound Monster Turkey

16 hours ago
Jessica Reeder / Allegheny Front

When it comes to the Thanksgiving turkey, size matters.  A 2o-pounder from the supermarket freezer is usually enough to secure some bragging rights for the cook. But for hobby farmer, Ken Chiacchia, a bird that size would hardly raise an eyebrow. He regularly raises heavyweights that get twice that size. But for him, what’s worth bragging about isn’t how big they get—it’s how they’re raised:

I sing you the song of “Turkmenistan”—a 43-pound monster of a Tom turkey we raised on our little farm.

What Is The Carbon Footprint Of A Typical Thanksgiving?

Nov 25, 2015
Jack Amick / Flickr

Mike Berners-Lee may not be an expert on the American Thanksgiving. A native of the UK, he’s never actually had the pleasure of experiencing one. But as one of the world’s leading researchers on the carbon footprint of—well—everything (he even wrote a book subtitled “The Carbon Footprint of Everything”), he’s plenty familiar with the impacts of the foods that star in the traditional Thanksgiving Day spread.

How To Talk Politics At Thanksgiving Without Causing A Family Feud

Nov 25, 2015
Didriks / Flickr

Talking politics with family and friends at the holidays is supposed to be a big no-no. But sometimes you can’t help yourself. So if you’re going to walk down that dangerous road, we at least wanted to provide a few pointers. This week, Kara Holsopple chatted with psychologist Mary Beth Mannarino about how you can take on issues like climate change at Thanksgiving—but avoid a family feud. Here are some highlights from the interview: 

On how to deal with hot button issues like climate change at family gatherings

Illustration by Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA



How To Pilfer A Semi-Abandoned, Iowa Tree Farm

Josh Raulerson,* 90.5 WESA Morning Edition Host

Nicholas A. Tonelli / Flickr

If you'll be driving this Thanksgiving, you might see an increase in traffic as you make your way to holiday gatherings.

AAA predicts that about 42 million people will travel 50 miles or more by car for this holiday weekend—the highest number of travelers since 2007.

Ian Westcott / Flickr

Thanksgiving is all about gratitude. And family. And gluttony. And falling asleep on the couch in front of a football game.

But before you carve the turkey and eat “just a slice” of five different kinds of pie, there are lots of opportunities to break out of your Thanksgiving routine and do something a little different this year.

    Can you believe Thanksgiving is next week? 2015 is slipping away until it’s gone forever, the winter onslaught arrives and the dark night feels like it arrives earlier and earlier…so HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

WESA’s Josh and Yelp Pittsburgh’s Rachel are here to cheer you up and get you ready for that festive time of year with some amazing events around town.

Let’s kick it off with Light Up Night. There are two celebrations going on- Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s 55th Annual Light Up Night and Duquesne Light Santa Spectacular. Come down to Market Square for the grand opening of the European Market. There is also a bigger and more spectacular ice rink this year at PPG Place. You’ll be able to catch Santa and his reindeer and get your #SelfiewithSanta in Santa’s custom workshop. Pittsburgh Symphony is doing a free concert, Friday November 20th at Heinz Hall as well. Basically if you go downtown you will be immersed in Christmas everywhere.

David Haines / Flickr

Black Friday sales are down and Cyber Monday sales continue to increase. So, what is the biggest shopping day of the year? And what is trending in Pittsburgh?

We'll talk with Duquesne University marketing professor Audrey Guskey about the ways that times are changing for retailers. 

Local business owners have high hopes heading into Small Business Saturday.

Across Pittsburgh, hundreds of locally owned restaurants and retailers are offering specials, events and giveaways the day after Black Friday to drive up sales as part of a movement launched by American Express in 2010 to get holiday shoppers out of the malls and into the mom and pop shops.

Audrey Guskey, an associate professor of marketing at Duquesne University, said the movement has gotten a lot of attention so far this year.

Gas prices averaging below $3 per gallon could spur many Americans to travel this for Thanksgiving, which might cause some traffic delays, according to AAA.

Chelsea Pompeani, director of public affairs at AAA east central, says the best way to avoid the increased traffic is to leave a little early.

Planning for the Holidays with Elaine Labalme

Oct 2, 2014
Flickr user Dale Beckett

While you may not want to think about it, the holidays will soon be upon us. If you’re thinking of getting away, now is the time to book your holiday travel plans. Contributor Elaine Labalme who tweets about food and travel under the twitter handle New Girl in Town, joins us to offer some pre-Thanksgiving and Christmas travel tips.

According to Labalme, if you’re planning to travel this holiday season, it’s important to plan and book early. People who are looking for snow should keep in mind that large ski resorts tend to get busy, so a smaller ski resort may be a better choice. The key to enjoying a holiday vacation, Labalme notes, is being grateful to get away.

Each year the holiday shopping season kicks off with the huge savings and massive crowds of Black Friday — or is it Black Thursday?

The unofficial holiday for all things retail is the single most important day of the year for merchants, though increases in online sales and disappointing predictions have some jumping the gun.

The National Retail Federation is predicting a 3.9 percent growth in holiday retail sales over last year, a disappointing forecast that has some retailers opening their doors early.

Thanksgivukkah/Modern Tribe / Facebook

This year we will experience a once in a lifetime convergence of holidays. Thanksgiving and the first day of Hanukkah occur on the same day.

In celebration of what she calls a "Jewish-American mashup," Dana Reichman Gitell, a native of Squirrel Hill, has popularized the term “Thanksgivukkah” online.

She says most people are tickled by the playful cultural juxtaposition of imagery that can be found on sites like Modern Tribe.