Happy 150th birthday, West Virginia. Your Charleston Daily Mail is jam-packed with sesquicentennial coverage today, and the lunchtime rundown is here to give you a few highlights.
Today’s front page (beautiful, isn’t it?) features more results from The West Virginia Poll, which found that most residents have traveled widely in the state, believe Joe Manchin is the best governor in recent memory, love pepperoni rolls and would pick “Take Me Home, Country Roads” as the official state song.
For more West Virginia numbers, check out this feature by the Daily Mail team: “West Virginia’s sesquicentennial by the numbers.” Did you know that the Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine has a constant temperature of 58 degrees, or that the state is 130 miles across at its widest point?
In other sesquicentennial news…
- On the blog, members of West Virginia’s congressional delegation have issued birthday wishes for the Mountain State.
- Former Daily Mail staffer Elaine McMillionis rolling out her interactive documentary, “Hollow,” today. Elaine also has this “op-doc” in the New York Times today.
- Fifty years ago, President John F. Kennedy was the keynote speaker at West Virginia’s rainy 100th birthday celebration. Daily Mail intern Charles Young has this remembrance.
- The “first family of fireworks” will help West Virginia celebrate its birthday this year with fireworks displays on Thursday, Friday and Saturday night.
- Numerous streets in downtown Charleston will be closed this weekend for sesquicentennial and FestivALL festivities.
- Finally, I will be appearing on former Daily Mailer Chris Stirewalt‘s online show, “Power Play,” today at 11:45 a.m. Click here to watch live.
Now for some non-sesquicentennial news. John Raese‘s West Virginia Radio Corp. filed suit against West Virginia University, alleging the WVU Foundation illegally invested in rival company West Virginia Media. The suit alleges Bray Cary, owner of West Virginia Media, was at one point a member of the foundation’s board.
Also, Attorney General Patrick Morrisey responded to criticism about letters he recently sent to state abortion providers. Pro-choice groups West Virginia Free and the West Virginia chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union publicly questioned Morrisey’s motives this week.
“Our letters were carefully tailored to focus on the lack of regulation of abortion clinics as a whole,” Morrisey said in the statement. “We hope the groups who have sought to politicize this important issue of public health and safety will begin to stick to the facts.”
And that’s all, folks. Enjoy this beautiful West Virginia Day.