Ann Thompson / WVXU

U.S. Magistrate Michael Newman is proud of his district's Reentry Court, calling it one of the best in the nation alongside Minneapolis. Ten more ex-convicts graduated November 9, 2017, from the program that began in 2012 and continues to see a drop in recidivism.

Ed. note: Tales from the Trail is a column that will take you behind the scenes of politics to see some of the funny, and sometimes outright bizarre things that happen on the campaign trail, based on Howard Wilkinson's recollections of 43 years of covering politics. 

When you are traveling with a candidate – particularly a candidate for president – there are all sorts of obstacles you must overcome.


Filming resumes today in Dayton on "The Old Man and The Gun," starring Robert Redford, Danny Glover, Casey Affleck and Sissy Spacek.

Second Street in downtown Dayton, between Ludlow and Wilkinson streets, will be closed for a second consecutive day for the movie production, according to Dayton news reports. It is scheduled to reopen at 7 p.m. today, Tuesday May 2.


Working to evolve from an industrial city to one that can grow and thrive in today's economy, Dayton, Ohio faces many of the same economic and social challenges as other cities across the country, including police-community relations, poverty and the opioid crisis.

Starting February 2, Dayton's Human Race Theatre will present the world premiere of Eric Ulloa's 26 Pebbles, which deals with the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings on the community. 

Fred Rogers Company

Starting Jan. 16, the around-the-clock public TV children's programming on Channel 14.3 will be changed to PBS Kids. Why?

Adopting the PBS Kids national lineup and branding allows Cincinnati's WCET-TV and Dayton's WPTD-TV/WPTO-TV to provide a live stream of the channels online.


Branden Frantz, former general sales manager at WXIX-TV (Channel 19), will succeed Richard Dyer as WLWT-TV president and general manager Jan. 1.

The music and dancers, the food and the beer, all of it part of the annual Dayton Celtic Festival

City of Dayton, City of Cincinnati

Cincinnati has double the population of Dayton, Ohio, yet the cities share similar characteristics and face many of the same challenges and opportunities. WVXU political reporter Howard Wilkinson joins us as we talk with Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley and Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley about working together for the benefit of both cities, and their thoughts on the future for what could one day become a combined Cincinnati-Dayton metropolitan area. 

Provided / University of Dayton University Communications

James Philips says he must've forgotten to return History of the Crusades to the University of  Dayton library when he joined the Marines. Now, 49 years later, the book is finally returned and heading back into circulation.

City of Dayton

Interim Dayton City Manager Shelley Dickstein is losing the "interim" from her title.

Dickstein will be officially appointed during Wednesday's City Commission meeting.

Greg Hume / Wikimedia Commons- ConlonTT

Dayton city leaders have signed an agreement with two companies to redevelop a downtown landmark.

Cross Street Partners and Dayton-based Miller-Valentine Group want to turn the Dayton Arcade into affordable housing for artistic and creative residents.

Rebecca Forste visits with Jim Stump to discuss her presentation on the celebrated Ohio poet Paul Laurence Dunbar at the main branch of the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County on Saturday, January 30.

Pulitzer Prize-winning author and historian David McCullough has just released his latest book, a fascinating look at the men from Dayton, Ohio who took flight from Kitty Hawk.

A community organization in Dayton is setting up a time bank to encourage volunteering.  East End Community Services is starting the Dayton Time Network, in which members earn credit for each hour they spend helping other members.  That credit can then be redeemed for hours from other members.

Potential members must first attend an orientation meeting, and when accepted, enter the hours worked online. 

Jazz lovers in this area have no doubt made the drive to Dayton to see some of their favorites perform in in intimate setting of Gilly’s, celebrating almost 34 years of presenting live music in their current location. The club’s owner, Jerry Gillotti, joins our Ron Esposito to reflect on some of the greats who’ve performed at Gilly’s and the challenges of booking live music these days.

Provided / Wright State University Archives

Popular humorist and columnist Erma Bombeck went about her life living in a modest 1959 ranch-style house in Centerville, Ohio. Now, that home is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Martha Boice, who helped found the Landmarks Foundation of Centerville-Washington Twp., says she thought it was just a pipe dream at first. At a University of Dayton writing conference last year, she asked Bombeck's children if they'd be okay with her pursing the designation. She was delighted when they said yes.

Dayton Mayor's Office / Provided

Dayton mayor Nan Whaley delivered her state of the city address Wednesday. She said Dayton can be a vibrant city, but getting there demands more than just talk.

"Our vision of a thriving, vibrant city can’t just be about talk," Whaley said. "It must be about action and results."

Whaley said the city is seeing results. She cited the May renewal of the city's income tax as a success in keeping Dayton on solid financial ground.

Crime is also down three percent, according to numbers from Dayton Police.

Dayton has a new city manager. Warren Price will take over January 12. He replaces Tim Riordan, who is retiring.

Price comes from Canton, where he held several positions including Directory of Safety, and Chief of Staff - Canton's equivalent to a city manager. He's also an attorney.

Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley says this is the first time in 12 years a city manager has come from outside city ranks.

City of Dayton, Ohio

Dayton's city manager announced Monday he will be stepping down on January 31st.  Tim Riordan has held the job since 2009.  

"It has been an honor and a privilege to serve the City of Dayton for these five years,” Riordan said in a printed statement.  “I want to thank the city commission for their support and courage during these tough economic times.  I believe it is time for another individual to bring unique talents and skills to move our city forward.  For me, I look forward to something new and different."

City of Dayton

Following in Cincinnati's trail, Dayton is getting a bike share program.

City Commissioners Wednesday approved the final piece of a financial agreement to support the program.

The Greater Dayton Regional Transit Authority will operate and maintain the system. Plans call for about 225 bikes and 22 stations located within a two-mile radius of downtown. The bikes will be "RTA-green."

Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley is appointing a task force to consider the future of a Gem City landmark.

Dayton's Arcade is listed on the National Register of Historic Places but has been empty since the 1990's. The once glittering building has fallen into disrepair following years of neglect.

In a release, Whaley's office says the task force will review and assess the Arcade for redevelopment along with nine surrounding buildings.

Teachers deliver alarming allegations against charter school

Jul 16, 2014
Andy Chow / Ohio Public Radio

The state board of education is launching an investigation into at least one charter school after hearing disturbing testimony from a group of former teachers.

Sexual misconduct, racism, teacher intimidation, questionable testing policies, and mishandling of complaints about those claims were among the allegations the teachers brought to the state board of education meeting.

The teachers were all former employees of the Horizon Science Academy Dayton High School, a charter school managed by the Chicago-based Concept Schools.

Mound Business Park

The Dayton Development Coalition has been busy lining up businesses to move into a region that in less than a decade was hit hard by the loss of NCR, GM and DHL.

Just this month there have been three major announcements:

Provided / University of Dayton

The Dayton Flyers' Men's NCAA basketball tournament run brought in more than just good press for the University of Dayton.

A study commissioned by two Dayton City Commissioners finds the team's unexpected success generated increased publicity for the city as well.


Dayton Police Chief Richard Biehl says the suspect is 59-year-old Neil Moore, a former VA housekeeping employee. The victim is 61-year-old Paul Burnside. He is a VA employee. The shooting took place in a basement break room at the VAMC as Burnside struggled with Moore. It is uncertain if the two knew each other.

A gun, described as a revolver by the FBI, has been found in the suspect's vehicle and is believed to be the weapon in question.

Provided, City of Dayton



Dayton has a new fire chief. Jeff Payne is assuming the position full-time.

He has been interim Fire Chief since July 1, 2013.

Payne is a 25-year veteran of the Dayton Fire Department. He'll oversee more than 350 firefighters, paramedics, EMTs and support staff and a budget of about $36 million.


Dayton's new mayor officially takes office Monday morning at a 10 o'clock ceremony.

Mayor-elect Nan Whaley becomes the city's second female mayor. The first was Rhine McLin who served two terms from 2002 to 2010.

Commissioner Joey Williams and Commissioner-elect Jeffrey Mims Jr are also being sworn in to 4-year terms. This is Williams fourth term and Mims' first.

The ceremony will take place at the Dayton Convention Center.


The board of the Dayton arts organization Cityfolk has voted to dissolve the group. The unanimous vote comes five months after Cityfolk canceled its 2013-2014 season and the annual summer music festival.

In a release, the board says Cityfolk's assets will be transferred to the University of Dayton. Its records and files are being donated to Wright State's Special Collections and Archives.

Our decision was a difficult one, but the right one," says Cityfolk President Matt Dunn.

The group was founded in 1980 to present ethnic and traditional folk arts.