Michelle Bliss

After growing up in Woodbridge, Virginia, Michelle attended Virginia Tech before moving to Wilmington to complete her Master in Fine Arts from the University of North Carolina in Wilmington. Her reporting and nonfiction writing have been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered, within the pages of Wrightsville Beach Magazine, and in literary journals like River Teeth and Ninth Letter. Before moving to Wilmington, Michelle served as the general manager for WUVT, a community radio station in Blacksburg, Virginia. She lives with her husband Scott and their pups, Katie, Cooper, and Mosey.

Michelle left WHQR in April 2012 to pursue her writing career.

Ways to Connect

Right now, 1 in 8 Americans aged 65 and older has Alzheimer’s, and the disease affects nearly half of all people who are 85 and up.

The facts are staggering: 5.4 million Americans have Alzheimer’s Disease today; by 2050, that number could triple to up to 16 million; the disease is the sixth leading cause of death in America and will cost the nation $200 billion this year.

Many of this year’s New Hanover County primary candidates are gathering Wednesday night to express their opinions on local issues before voters head to the polls.

Three times a week, Dr. Mark Williams visits half a dozen geriatric patients at The Davis Community, a nursing home and rehabilitation center in Porters Neck.

One of Melissa Warren’s ninth grade English students, Juan Morales at South Brunswick High School, says her class is like the Army—you must be on time, you must be prepared, and you must make every second count.

Newt Gingrich stopped in Wilmington Wednesday for a campaign rally at UNCW sponsored by the school’s College Republicans group.

Six out of ten North Carolinians would oppose an amendment to the state constitution to prevent any same-sex marriages, domestic partnerships, or civil unions. That’s according to a poll last week out of Elon University.


Imagine a live show that combines dramatic performances, iconic photography, and traditional Scottish and Irish music performed by Ensemble Galilei.


Carolina Beach is getting a new fire chief while the hiring process for a new head of town police continues.

The three Republican candidates running in the May 8th primary for a shot at the North Carolina 7th Congressional District seat are gathering in Brunswick County Tuesday night for a debate.

Residents can now receive notices about public school lockdowns in New Hanover County through Twitter.

17 percent of North Carolinians meet the federal definition of living in poverty. Under that definition, a family of four will have an income of less than about $22,000.

UNCW will be the permanent home for a Wilmington tradition called Art for the Masses.

More than 100 victims of forced sterilization have been verified by the North Carolina Justice for Sterilization Victims Foundation.

North Carolinians can get rid of their old prescription medications at more than 200 drop-off events across the state next week.

Right now, 1.2 million seniors age 65 and up live in North Carolina. That number could trump 2 million by 2030.

Residents can voice their opinions on the draft report of the North Carolina Maritime Strategy study this week. 

The State Bureau of Investigation’s Donnie Varnell says that out-of-state drug dealers drive to North Carolina to get their fraudulent prescriptions filled. That’s because North Carolina hasn’t required them to show a photo ID.

For WHQR’s Midday Interview, News Director Michelle Bliss talked to Georgia Mastroieni. She’s the curator of education for the Cameron Art Museum which offers the Connections Alzheimer’s tours. The program recently received a grant that will further its offerings to include hands-on art projects. Melannie Pate was also in the studio—she’s the office manager for the Wilmington branch of Alzheimer’s NC.  

Titan America received its state air permit Wednesday after a nearly four-year application process. 

Michael Dorausch

North Carolina’s election filing closed Wednesday at noon. Statewide, 13 contenders have entered the ring for a shot at the governor's post. 

Flickr Creative Commons: http://www.flickr.com/photos/68751915@N05/

North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper is warning residents about identity thieves who are filing tax returns in order to claim another person’s refund. 

Two members of the Wrightsville Beach Police Department have been reprimanded while a third resigned Tuesday morning.


Even though the North Carolina Governor’s School program was cut from the state budget, alumni and other partners have banded together to raise more than $700,000.


While the cost of college tuition continues to rise, South Brunswick High School has launched a pilot program for the state’s Career and College Promise initiative to help high school students earn college credit early.

The University of North Carolina Board of Governors voted Friday to increase tuition across the state system by an average of nearly 9 percent. WHQR’s Michelle Bliss reports that UNCW students will see a 9.2 percent hike in the fall.


Three school buildings in Wilmington were put on lockdown for about an hour this morning. New Hanover County Sheriff’s deputies secured Hoggard High School on Shipyard Boulevard, along with Roland-Grise Middle School and the learning center adjacent to Roland-Grise.

Sergeant Jerry Brewer says the lockdown was in response to a bomb threat at a nearby Liberty Healthcare building on South 41st Street. Once the police checked the area and cleared the threat, the three school buildings were reopened around noon. 

Governor Bev Perdue joined a meeting of principals and school counselors in Wilmington Thursday to, as WHQR’s Michelle Bliss reports, discuss the county’s new strategies for lowering the dropout rate and helping kids flip that tassel.  

More than 37 miles of primary and secondary roads in Brunswick and New Hanover Counties will soon be resurfaced.

The headliner for this year’s Azalea Festival has been announced. Country singer Scotty McCreery will perform at UNCW’s Trask Coliseum on April 13th.

McCreery is a Garner, North Carolina native who won the American Idol television competition last year.

The Azalea Festival has been a Wilmington tradition since 1948 and a recent study by UNCW researchers found that the event has a $50 million impact on the local economy. This year, the festival runs from April 11th to 15th.