First Coast Connect

First Coast Connect

From WJCT 89.9 FM Jacksonville

Host Melissa Ross gets plugged in to everything thats happening around the First Coast. Join me as we launch First Coast Connect, a new show covering the issues, trends and newsmakers that have people talking. Get connected. This one hour programs airs Monday to Friday at 9am.More from First Coast Connect »

Most Recent Episodes

07/28/16: Al Lawson; Author Cindy Landham; Kerry Speckman

Al Lawson Corrine Brown's indictment on 24 charges of fraud may provide a political opening for her biggest challenger, former state Sen. Al Lawson of Tallahassee. Lawson is the most high-profile contender to replace Brown in the District 5 Congressional seat she's held for more than two decades. He joins us to discuss his platform. Cindy Landham It's a simple piece of advice for anyone who's struggled with their weight: we are all born with innate wisdom about how to eat, but dieting leads us to disconnect from this intuition, leading to food obsession, body hatred, anxiety, and weight fluctuation. That's the message Jacksonville-based wellness coach and author Cindy Landham is delivering in her new book, and she's learned these lessons the hard way. We speak with her about new book, "The Liberated Eater." Kerry Speckman TheSpecktator.com blogger Kerry Speckman joins us with a look at the biggest events happening around town this weekend.

07/27/16: Florida Creamery Controversy; Food Policy Council; Eco-Friendly Shirt Printing; Judy Wells

Florida Creamery We begin the hour with a discussion about the controversy surrounding Angela Wilcox, owner of the Florida Creamery ice cream shop in Avondale. In a recent Facebook exchange with another local business owner, Wilcox vented about everything from liberals, to ISIS, to people who don't sign paychecks. The posts have since been taken down, but not before they went viral, and were viewed more than 30,000 times. People around the country then used Yelp and Google reviews to voice their displeasure with Wilcox and her business because of her views. Others came to her defense. Jacksonville Business Journal reporter Alexa Epitropoulos joins us to discuss how social media can affect businesses. Food Policy Council For years, food policy experts here in Jacksonville have decried what are known as "food deserts," large areas of this city where fresh, healthy food is not readily available. If you don't have transportation to what can sometimes be a faraway grocery store, buying

07/27/16: Florida Creamery Controversy; Food Policy Council; Eco-Friendly Shirt Printing; Judy Wells

07/26/16: Dave Bruderly; Jacksonville Magazine Fiction Contest; Atlantic Beach Experimental Theatre

Dave Bruderly The Democratic National Convention heads into day two Tuesday, following a series of rousing speeches designed to unify the party after a fractious first day. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders closed out the convention's first night with a forceful plea for his supporters to get behind nominee Hillary Clinton. Can the Democrats unite behind the common goal of beating Donald Trump? Dave Bruderly, Democratic candidate for the District 4 Congressional seat, joins us to discuss the convention and his platform. Jacksonville Magazine Fiction Contest Jacksonville Magazine publisher Joe White joins us with all of the details of their second annual fiction writing contest. The winner will have their short story or poem published in the October issue of the periodical. Atlantic Beach Experimental Theatre It's a celebration of 25 years of children's musical theatre at the beaches. This week, Atlantic Beach Experimental Theatre (ABET) is marking its silver anniversary with a series of

07/26/16: Dave Bruderly; Jacksonville Magazine Fiction Contest; Atlantic Beach Experimental Theatre

07/25/16: Democratic National Convention; First Coast Success; Springfield Project; Cole Pepper

Democratic National Convention As the Democratic National Convention kicks off in Philadelphia, an unusual question is capturing the attention of cyberspecialists, Russia experts and Democratic Party leaders: Is Vladimir Putin trying to meddle in the American presidential election? A Wikileaks release on Friday of some 20,000 stolen emails from DNC computer servers has intensified discussion of the potential role of Russian intelligence agencies in disrupting the 2016 campaign. The emails have laid bare the extent to which party leaders favored Hillary Clinton over her primary rival, Sen.Bernie Sanders, and they've triggered the resignation of party chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Researchers have concluded that the DNC was breached by two Russian intelligence agencies, which were the same attackers behind previous Russian cyberoperations at the White House, the State Department and the Joint Chiefs of Staff last year. We discuss this and look ahead to the DNC this week in

07/25/16: Democratic National Convention; First Coast Success; Springfield Project; Cole Pepper

07/22/2016: Media Roundtable Week In Review; 'Louis And Ella'; Enchanted Christmas Village

Media Roundtable We discuss the week's biggest news stories with our roundtable of local journalists: Sebastian Kitchen, Florida Times-Union reporter; Claire Goforth, Folio Weekly editor; Mark Judson, UNF Spinnaker editor; and blogger Fred Matthews. Topics include the Republic National Convention, the federal investigation into Rep. Corrine Brown, and more.

07/22/2016: Media Roundtable Week In Review; 'Louis And Ella'; Enchanted Christmas Village

07/21/16: Medical Marijuana; Chamblin Bookmine; Kerry Speckman

Medical Marijuana Nearly two years after Florida lawmakers legalized it, low-THC medical marijuana could be available in the state as soon as next week. The Florida Department of Health has granted a Tallahassee company called Trulieve the authority to process and dispense the drug. Five other Florida companies have a license to sell cannabis for medical use. Meanwhile, activists in Florida push for a constitutional amendment legalizing the drug for a wider array of medical treatments. The cannabis market is growing nationwide as more states say "yes" to medical marijuana. Steve Gormley is managing partner with Seventh Point LLC, a private equity firm focused on medical marijuana. He joins us to discuss the state of medical marijuana and marijuana legalization both in Florida, and around the country. Chamblin Bookmine Over the past 40 years, Jacksonville's Chamblin Bookmine bookstore has grown from a few thousand titles, to more than three million. And its proprietor, Ron Chamblin, has

07/20/16: Republican National Convention; HandsOn Jacksonville; Coastal Magazine; 'Memphis'

Republican National Convention Donald Trump is officially the presidential nominee for the Republican party. Trump claimed the nomination Tuesday night during the second day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. The second day went a little more smoothly than the first, after a series of hiccups involving everything from dissent on the floor over Trump's nomination, to a plagiarism scandal around a speech given by Melania Trump. Matt Corrigan, professor of political science at the University of North Florida, joins us with his thoughts about where the convention will go from here.

07/20/16: Republican National Convention; HandsOn Jacksonville; Coastal Magazine; 'Memphis'

07/19/16: Akif Aydin, River City Science Academy; Anazao Galleries; 'Don't Miss A Beat' Choir

Akif Aydin and River City Science Academy Akif Aydin, former president and director of the Istanbul Cultural Center of Jacksonville and one of the founders of Jacksonville's River City Science Academy, joined us by phone to discuss the Fethullah Gulen movement, its influence on River City Science Academy, and his thoughts on the unsuccessful military takeover and the crackdown that's jailed more than 7,000 political dissidents.

07/19/16: Akif Aydin, River City Science Academy; Anazao Galleries; 'Don't Miss A Beat' Choir

07/18/16: 2016 National Conventions; Pratt Guys; Cole Pepper

2016 National Conventions The 2016 Republican National Convention kicks off tonight in Cleveland. As Donald Trump prepares to accept his party's nomination, he'll seek to bridge deep divisions in a GOP that's still conflicted about his candidacy. There are also policy disagreements between Donald Trump and his newly minted running mate, Indiana Governor Mike Pence, on issues like trade, the Iraq War and Trump's proposed Muslim ban. GOP stalwarts say the party will unite around their common goal of beating presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. We begin the hour with a look ahead to the Republican convention, and the Democratic one to follow. Joining us are: State Representative and Duval County GOP chair Lake Ray, who is also a candidate for the 4th District Congressional seat; and former Florida Chief Financial Officer and 2010 Democratic gubernatorial nominee Alex Sink. Pratt Guys Jacksonville's Pratt Guys have seen a 600 percent revenue increase over the past few years.

07/15/16: Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams

Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams joins us for the full hour to discuss recent acts of terror in the U.S. and abroad. We also talk about issues of race, gun rights and police relations following recent police-involved shootings in Minnesota and Louisiana.

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