Johnson & Johnson

A third vaccine against Covid-19 joins North Carolina’s arsenal starting Wednesday, March 3rd.

Following a landmark civil rights settlement, North Carolina has agreed to release 3,500 prisoners over the next 180 days. The deal follows nearly a year of litigation by the NAACP and several individuals over whether prison conditions during the Covid-19 pandemic are constitutional. WHQR spoke with Jordan Wilkie, who has been covering the story for Carolina Public Press.

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The mask mandate is not about to change in North Carolina.  But as Covid metrics are declining on all fronts, and Governor Roy Cooper is ready to ease some restrictions.  

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North Carolina is moving to the next phase of Covid-19 vaccine distribution soon.  But Group 3 is going to get the shot in phases.  


North Carolina will get 5% more of the Covid-19 vaccine starting next week.  But there’s still not enough vaccine available, and it’s even worse for those in minority communities. 

NHCS YouTube Channel

At Tuesday night's New Hanover County School Board meeting, there was plenty of community support for returning pre-K through 5th-graders to school full time. Next week, the board will decide whether to do that.

Every school district in North Carolina should reopen for in-person learning as soon as possible.  That’s the message from Governor Roy Cooper. 

Duke University

  New research is suggesting that even if there’s high spread of the coronavirus in the community, that doesn’t translate into increased cases in schools. But the findings rest upon each school’s commitment to masking, handwashing, and distancing.

Benjamin Schachtman

Most state and local elected officials in North Carolina are still waiting for their turn to receive a shot, which they’ll be eligible for in the upcoming Group 3 of the state’s vaccine rollout. But New Hanover County commissioners received their first doses a little early, while the county was still technically in Group 1.

NHC Flickr Page

  As more North Carolinians are becoming eligible for vaccination,  actually getting a vaccine appointment has become trickier. This has added uncertainty to an already uneven rollout. Local health officials have heard these frustrations and advise patience.


The highly contagious COVID-19 variant, first detected in the United Kingdom last month, is now present in North Carolina. While the vaccine is not yet widely available, the state still has a mask mandate -- just one of the steps Governor Roy Cooper has taken to stem the tide of the virus. 



New Hanover County joins 83 other North Carolina counties marked red, with the most severe levels of Covid-19 spread. Officials are calling for residents to stay home except for necessities and emergencies.


NHCS YouTube Channel

  At Tuesday night’s New Hanover County School Board meeting, the announcement came that school staff will be vaccinated in Phase 1B. There were also concerns from some community members about the impending elementary reopening.


To the relief of many, 2020 has drawn to a close. It was a chaotic and often confusing year, one that challenged people to make sense of rapidly evolving stories and difficult issues. WHQR managing editor Ben Schachtman has a retrospective, with archival audio managed by Rachel Keith.

Benjamin Schachtman

The Cape Fear Public Utility Authority is delaying a pilot program to restrict water flow to residential customers with delinquent accounts. CFPUA is one of the first in the nation to consider this type of program and, while it’s based on a very simple piece of technology, the issue driving it is much more complicated.


  The New Hanover County School Board has approved reopening pre-k-5 schools for full in-personing learning on January 19th, pushing back an earlier opening date by a week. It’s been a difficult decision for members, especially the newest ones who had to make up their minds quickly.

At Tuesday afternoon's press conference, Governor Roy Cooper announced that the Covid-19 vaccine arrived in North Carolina on Monday. But he says the vaccines will not be available to the general public anytime soon and that coronavirus infection rates are continuing to rise. 

Ben Schachtman

New Hanover Regional Medical Center is getting closer to limiting less urgent procedures. In part, the decision depends on whether or not the hospital hits an average of 50 Covid-19 patients.


The recent Covid-19 spike in North Carolina has state officials using words such as “dire”, “alarming”, “shocking”, “life and death”, and “upon us with a rapid viciousness.”  80% of counties in the state are now coded orange and red. 


As the number of people hospitalized in North Carolina hits a record high for the fourth day in a row, state officials are rolling out their plan for distribution of the Covid vaccine.  

Hannah Breisinger

With a national financial forecast appearing increasingly bleak, economic leaders in southeastern North Carolina are sharing input on how this part of the state is faring. A recent webinar focused on the region’s current economic position, and how the area can maintain its resiliency moving ahead.

Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations continue to rise at concerning levels across North Carolina.  For that reason, Governor Roy Cooper is extending restrictions on gatherings and tightening requirements on mask-wearing.  And as Pender County becomes one of 21 counties with substantial community spread, state officials hope local governments will follow Greensboro’s example. 

Wilmingon Health

The number of Covid-19 cases in New Hanover County continue to rise. WHQR talks with Wilmington Health's Dr. Paul Kamitsuka about what you need to know before celebrating the upcoming holidays.    

Benjamin Schachtman

It was a busy meeting for New Hanover County commissioners this Monday, with the board tackling public health issues and development requests, and hearing farewells from two outgoing members.



NHC Students, Teachers Readjust To In-Person Classes

Oct 19, 2020

New Hanover County Schools opened for in-person classes last week. WHQR checked-in with some school personnel to see how things went.   

NHCS Live Stream

  New Hanover County Schools are opening for in-person classes on Monday. But as WHQR reports, parents and teachers still have questions.

This Friday, October 2nd, North Carolina moves into Phase 3 of its coronavirus response, and movie theaters, bars, and outdoor entertainment venues will be allowed to open at reduced capacity.

Walnut Creek Amphitheater

North Carolina is taking another step towards re-opening.  As Covid-19 metrics continue to stabilize, Governor Roy Cooper is also announcing new relief money for small businesses and a new Covid app.  

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At this week’s City Council meeting, Wilmington leaders approved allocating COVID-19 Relief Funds to Good Shepherd, as well as an agreement for the long-anticipated development at Castle Street. But it was proposed Riverwalk improvements and WAVE’s redevelopment that drew the most debate from council. 

File Photo

With no clear end to the pandemic in sight, food insecurity is skyrocketing. And local organizations in the Cape Fear region are bracing for the long haul.