Valley 101 show

Valley 101

Summary: Whether you're a longtime Arizona resident or a newcomer, chances are there's something you've always wondered about the Valley. From The Arizona Republic and comes Valley 101, a weekly podcast where our journalists find answers to your questions about metro Phoenix. From silly to serious, you tell us what to investigate. You can submit questions at or reach us on Twitter @azcpodcasts.

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 Why is cotton one of Arizona's 5 Cs? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1008

Last week, our Valley 101 podcast explored Arizona's five Cs, focusing on citrus and its decline.  This week, podcast editor Katie O'Connell digs in on another crop: cotton. The plant was included in the five Cs after its boom in World War I, but it's struggled in recent decades.  To uncover more on cotton and its role in our state's identity, Katie spoke to Ron and Russ Rayner, a father-son duo who operate farms in the West Valley. Their consensus was clear. Cotton is still a vital part of the state's identity, bringing in between $400 to $500 million to the state's economy each year.  In this episode, you'll hear: Philip VanderMeer, a retired Arizona State University professor of American and Arizonan history Ron and Russ Rayner, farmers from the West Valley Archival audio from an educational documentary from the 1950s

 Why is citrus one of the 5 Cs of Arizona? What led to its decline? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 845

If you grew up in Arizona as a young kid, chances are you learned about the five Cs of Arizona in school. But if you didn’t, maybe you’ve heard about them and wondered how they came to be. What are those five Cs? How did Arizona even get this alliteration? This week on Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and, we dive into the history of the five C's and answer the listener-submitted question, "what happened to derail the citrus industry in Arizona?" We also dig deeper into the impact the citrus industry has on Arizona's economy.  In this episode, you'll hear: Philip VanderMeer, a retired Arizona State University professor of American and Arizona history  Selwyn Justice, a fifth generation citrus grower in Arizona  Archival audio from an educational documentary from the 1930s

 Six common light rail questions answered | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1580

The Valley Metro light rail debuted in 2008 as a public transportation option that proponents hoped would propel Phoenix into the big leagues of cities. It currently stretches 28 miles long, 8 miles longer than when it first opened. By 2050, Valley Metro plans for it to be 60 miles long. But since its opening, locals have a lots of questions. Reporter Jessica Boehm and producer Taylor Seely answer them. The questions answered in this episode: Why'd the light rail come to Phoenix? Why's the light rail designed the way it is? Why'd Phoenix choose a light rail over a monorail? Does the light rail bring crime and hurt business? What's best for taxpayers' wallets: light rail, bus or car?  Has light rail been successful?

 What are the most haunted places in Phoenix? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1057

It's the Valley 101 podcast: Spooky edition!  You'll hear about graveyards, theater ghosts, and places where children's spirits are rumored to roam. Go on a haunted tour across Phoenix with us.

 Why are there antique dolls in the basement of Hanny's? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1105

Imagine yourself walking down a dark, twisting staircase. There's light at the bottom, but not much. You come upon a scene as puzzling as it is creepy: fourteen dolls that look like they've been there for years, sitting around a table and lit by a singular bulb. That's what you'll find in the basement of Hanny's, 40 N. 1st St, Phoenix. The downtown Phoenix bar and restaurant used to be a department store, which opened in 1947. The dolls weren't there then, so how and when did they get there? And more importantly, why? That's the topic podcast editor Katie O'Connell will explore in this week's special Halloween episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and

 Who is Winnie Ruth Judd, Phoenix's infamous murderess? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1296

Eighty-eight years ago, Winnie Ruth Judd traveled from Phoenix to Los Angeles with trunks oozing out blood. Initially, police thought the trunks contained illegal deer meat. After flies began circling the abandoned luggage, police opened the trunks, only to discover Agnes "Anne" LeRoi's full body in one and Hedvig "Sammy" Samuelson's dismembered body in another one.  The Oct. 16, 1931 murders put the then-sleepy city of Phoenix on the map. The murderous tale and subsequent court proceedings made national headlines. And with so many unanswered questions, the mystery behind Judd's story continues to capture attention.  Did Judd alone kill the two women? Why are there still so many questions surrounding the murder? How did she escape so many times from state hospital? In this week's episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and, producer Maritza Dominguez explores the tale of the "Trunk Murderess." In this episode, you'll hear: Jana Bommersbach, author of the book "The Trunk Murderess: Winnie Ruth Judd", gives a look at Winnie's life before and after the murders. Marshall Shore, the "Hip Historian", describe what Phoenix was like in the 1930's. Winnie Ruth Judd, in a 1969 interview, tells her version of what happened that night. 

 Does Phoenix have a startup scene like Silicon Valley? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1182

Phoenix is known as the land of sunshine and real estate. But every so often you might hear someone compare Phoenix with Silicon Valley, the land of tech startups and innovation and billionaires and Tesla. Some have gone so far as to call Phoenix the "Silicon Desert."  But when people talk startups, they usually talk about San Jose and San Francisco, Seattle, New York and Boston. What about us? How big is Phoenix’s startup scene? How is it shaping our metro and our future?

 What's that dome-shaped church always under construction near downtown? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1830

There's a tower and dome-shaped building south of Interstate 10 near 16th Avenue that seems to always be under construction. It's a church called La Luz del Mundo, or in English, The Light of the World Church. So what is the church and what do the members believe? And why is their church leader, Naasón Joaquín García facing 26 felony charges in Los Angeles County? Reporter Uriel Garcia and producer Taylor Seely find out.  To learn more about the church, its history, and ex-churchgoers, read this in-depth article for subscribers. 

 What was life like for Japanese Americans in Arizona after being incarcerated during WWII? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1955

Executive Order 9066 lead to the incarceration of 120,000 Japanese Americans during World War II. Two of the largest incarceration camps were located in Arizona.  In last week's episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and, we examined the history of the camps and what it was like to live in one. In this week's episode, we'll explore what life was like for Japanese Americans who lived outside of the militarized zone.  We'll also delve into the closing of the camps and, decades later, a moment the president of the Japanese American Citizens League, Arizona Chapter described as a "bright spot" for our country. 

 What was life like in the Japanese-American incarceration camps in Arizona during WWII? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 2058

Signed by President Franklin Roosevelt in 1942, Executive Order 9066 incarcerated almost 120,000 Japanese-Americans without due process.  Internees were sent to one of 10 incarceration camps throughout the country, including two in Arizona. Named the Poston Relocation Center and Gila River War Relocation Center, the camps would become the third and fourth largest cities in Arizona at the time. This week's episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and, explores the atmosphere that lead to the signing of Executive Order 9066 and the construction of the camps in Arizona. You'll also hear what life was like in the Arizona camps from someone who grew up in one.  This is the first part of a two-part series on this chapter of history. The second part will be released on Monday, Sept. 23. Subscribe to Valley 101 on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you listen to podcasts to ensure that you'll hear the follow up.

 How have Latinos shaped Phoenix? Exploring Arizona's Hispanic history | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1362

How have Latinos shaped Phoenix's development? Who are the Latinos that led the fight for civil rights in the Valley? It's a broad question, and an essential one: About one third of the people living in Maricopa County are Hispanic or Latino, according to U.S. Census data. We're looking at three stories that illustrate the impact Latinos had in the Valley and continue to have. We take a look into what Phoenix was like before it was developed and during the civil rights movement. September 15th is the start of Hispanic Heritage Month. Celebrate by learning more about Latino history in Arizona with this episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and NOTE: Valley 101 is intended to be heard. But we also offer a transcript of the episode script. There may be slight deviations from the podcast audio. In this episode, you'll hear:The History of the "Mother of Phoenix," Trinidad Escalante SwillingRay Martinez, a co-founder of the American Legion Post 41 and WWII U.S. Navy veteranMary Rose Wilcox, the first Latina to serve on the Phoenix City Council

 Exploring Phoenix sports fandom: Which team do we love the most? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1298

Which Arizona team are we in the Valley the most loyal to? And why? People often talk about how long a team has been around or how much they're winning, but there's so much more to it than that. Which team do you love the most and why? Let us know on Twitter @valley101pod. And sign up for our email newsletter at 

 Is Phoenix's air quality bad? How does it affect our health? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 1312

The American Lung Association ranked Phoenix the seventh most ozone-polluted metropolitan area in the United States in April. If you've ever seen a brown haze hanging over the Valley, you too may have questioned the safety of our air quality. While all residents can experience side effects of poor air quality, there are certain groups of people who are particularly sensitive and will endure more severe consequences. What can we all do to protect them? This episode will help you understand more about these pollutants; how they affect human health and who is most at risk; and how Phoenix's air quality has changed over time. LINKS:  Subscribe to our Valley 101 Newsletter: For more info on the ADEQ vehicle emissions assistance program: Follow Valley on Twitter @valley101pod. Follow Producer Taylor Seely on Twitter: @taylorseely95 Follow Host Kaila White on Twitter @KailaWhite

 Are palm trees native to Arizona? Why does Phoenix have so many? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 781

What do you think of when you picture a palm tree? For some, palm trees bring to mind images of beaches, sand and the ocean waves — not the desert. But you can spot the high-rising plant pretty much anywhere you head to in town. That begs the question: Are palm trees native to Arizona? Why does Phoenix have so many? In this week's episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and, podcast editor Katie O'Connell digs in on this fixture of our landscape.  In this episode you'll hear:Liz Makings, collections manager for Arizona State University's HerbariumSteve Blackwell, conservation collections manager at the Desert Botanical GardenBrian Blake, owner of Whitfill Nursery: Main Tree Farm

 Javelina in Arizona: Are they pigs? Are they dangerous? | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 946

Arizona is home to an array of wildlife unique to the southwestern U.S., including the often-misunderstood javelina. As Mesa resident Jim Albany asked, "Are javelina really dangerous?" This question took us on a journey to the Phoenix Zoo, a taxidermy-filled office room, and the Ben Avery Outdoor Archery Range in Phoenix. If you've ever run into a javelina in your neighborhood and not known how to react, you'll want to take a listen to this episode. Did you know that you can hunt javelina? We break down how it works and talk to local hunter Josh Kirchner about his adventures. To learn more, listen to this episode of Valley 101, a podcast from The Arizona Republic and In this episode, you'll hear:Devorah Young, a hoofstockkeeper at the Phoenix Zoo, talk about javelinas she takes care of. Darren Julian, of Arizona Game and Fish Department, speak about how to react when you run into a javelina.Josh Kirchner, a local hunter, talk about why he hunts javelina and how to do it. 


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