Politics over the last 10 years and the Kittatinny Ridge


What to look for on Smart Talk Tuesday, October 9, 2018:

Smart Talk premiered on October 9, 2008, in response to the Great Recession (as it became known). The program was designed to engage and answer Central Pennsylvanians’ questions about the worst economic downturn since the 1930s. The program was supposed to be temporary but just a month after its debut, voters went to the polls to elect a new president. They voted, primarily, between Democrat Barack Obama and Republican John McCain.

It was decided that the “temporary” Smart Talk program would stay on-the-air at least through the historic election that had generated excitement across the country.

History was made when Obama became the nation’s first African-American president.

When Smart Talk became a permanent fixture on WITF — politics and public policy was a major topic of discussion.

Smart Talk’s 10th anniversary continues Tuesday with a look back at politics over the past decade with Franklin and Marshall College political analyst and historian Dr. G. Terry Madonna.


Also on Smart Talk, the Duncannon Borough Council voted in September to secure a conservation easement of more than 1600 acres under the protection of The Nature Conservancy. The easement protects a portion of the Sherman’s creek watershed from future development and is part of the Kittatinny Ridge.

The Kittatinny Ridge, also known as Blue Mountain, runs through Pennsylvania for 185 miles and is home to a portion of the Appalachian Trail. The ridge is a veritable highway; an important raptor migration corridor in the northeastern U.S. and used by literally tens of thousands of hawks, eagles, and falcons each fall. Other species, in addition to raptors, migrate through the area, including Ruby-throated Hummingbirds and Monarch Butterflies.


Kittatinny Ridge

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Photo courtesy of Hawk Mountain Sanctuary Association @HawkMountainSanctuary

Hawk Mountain Sanctuary is among the best known hawk watching sites in the East and is located on the ridge. Hawk Mountain is a 2,500-acre sanctuary and the world’s first refuge for birds of prey. The scenic overlooks are open to the public and are an important location for volunteers who are counting raptors during the annual migration.

On Smart Talk today, is Bill Kunze, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, and Laurie Goodrich, Ph.D., Director of Long-Term Monitoring, Hawk Mountain Sanctuary.

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Dr. Laurie Goodrich and Bill Kunze