Bryan Russo | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 Contributors

Bryan Russo

Host, Coastal Connection

Russo is WAMU's "guy on the coast", serving as both the Coastal Reporter and the host of Coastal Connection, a weekly public affairs program which airs on WRAU 88.3 in Ocean City on Fridays at noon and 8 p.m.

Russo is an award winning journalist and an entertaining storyteller who is known for not only his hard news sensibility, but also his sensitivity in dealing with complex subject matters that impact the lives of people in the region. Russo strives to make Coastal Connection a weekly conversation about the issues that effect life on the coast, for both the locals and tourists, even if it means chasing a massive hurricane. In addition, Russo is also an acclaimed singer-songwriter and composer, whose music has been heard all over the world on radio, TV, and film.


Articles Written by Bryan Russo

WAMU 88.5
Indian River School District is the largest on Delaware and also enrolls the highest percentage of Hispanic students. But it wasn't always this way. “When I came to central office in ’91, fewer than 1 percent of our students were Hispanic, and now this year, we are looking at more like 28 percent," says Susan Bunting, superintendent of Indian River schools. Bac...
WAMU 88.5
Ocean City locals have said goodbye to the vast majority of summer tourists and welcomed in what they call the “second season.” The summer of 2014 will be remembered as a season of great weather and heated debates. Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan says if you compare the biggest story of the 2013 summer — which was a perceived uptick in violent crimes on the Ocean City boa...
WAMU 88.5
Maryland's Somerset County is the first in the state to implement a federal nutrition program that will provide free breakfast and lunch to all of its public school students. In addition to being the poorest county in Maryland, the Eastern Shore's Somerset County has the highest poverty rate, one of the highest dropout rates and the highest childhood obesity rate in the state....
WAMU 88.5
Beach Patrol officials in Ocean City are warning visitors to be extremely careful when swimming in the ocean this Labor Day weekend. For the holiday weekend, Ocean City officials have lifted the restriction barring swimmers from going beyond knee deep, after surf conditions eased in recent days. Earlier, the Ocean City Beach Patrol urged swimmers to be on high aler...
WAMU 88.5
If you smoke, this was likely the final summer in Ocean City where you can light one up while lounging on your beach chair. That’s because the Mayor and City Council voted 4-3 to restrict smoking to designated areas on the beach and the boardwalk effective May 1, 2015. The split decision was a compromise of sorts after a lengthy debate about banning smoking entir...
WAMU 88.5
Officials in Ocean City, Maryland, say an 18-year-old Virginia man is dead from apparent drowning in the Atlantic Ocean. Witnesses say the man was caught in a rip current and then disappeared from sight as he was pulled out to sea shortly before 6 p.m. Tuesday. First re...
WAMU 88.5
An offshore wind farm is one step closer to becoming reality. U.S. Wind, Inc. is a Texas-based company with ties to a successful offshore wind developer in Italy. In an online auction, the company won two adjacent lease areas totaling 80,000 acres, for $8.7 million. The lease areas are located about 10 miles off the Ocean City coastline in what's become known as th...
WAMU 88.5
Cultural exchange programs that bring thousands of foreign students to Maryland's Ocean City to work and travel for the summer have come under some scrutiny in recent weeks. Homeland Security officials shut down eight henna tattoo stands on the boardwalk this week after an investigation revealed that the stands were being run by foreign students here on F-1 visas, which allo...
WAMU 88.5
Salisbury's newest strategy to curb panhandling has sparked a citywide debate on how the Eastern Shore’s largest city handles its homeless residents. Local newspaper columnist Kim Hudson heard about the new signs Salisbury erected before she saw them, but when she laid eyes on the red and white signage that reads “Don’t contribute to solicitors,” she felt like it was...
WAMU 88.5
In Maryland, today is the final day of fishing in the world's largest billfish tournament: the White Marlin Open in Ocean City, where there's $2.7 million in prize money up for grabs. As things stand right now, the 78-pound white marlin caught yesterday by North Carolina angler John Bayliss aboard the Dreamtime is a million dolla...
WAMU 88.5
The annual Chincoteague Pony Auction has raised more than a half a million dollars for the local volunteer fire company on Virginia’s Eastern Shore in just the last four years alone. The event is as much a part of American folklore as it is a beloved local tradition. It begins like a western on the water; each year men on horses known as the "saltwater cowboys" lead the he...
WAMU 88.5
Police in Ocean City are advising locals and tourists to keep an eye out for suspicious activity on their credit- and debit-card accounts after discovering a widespread cyber attack. Nobody likes getting hacked, especially not when they are on vacation. But police officials say if you were in Ocean City around the Fourth of July weekend, you should check your bank stateme...
WAMU 88.5
The summer season in full swing and thousands upon thousands of people are taking a dip in the ocean each and every weekend. A new study is exploring whether or not there’s a rise in surf-zone injuries. Researchers are cross referencing the number of surf-zone related emergency room visits with things like wave height, length, and where the waves are breaking along the Del...
WAMU 88.5
A replica of a 16th century Spanish Galleon will be making its way back to Ocean City for the month of August. Both locals and visitors have their eyes fixed on the horizon line in anticipation of the ship’s arrival. Having the 170-foot-long El Galeon Andalucia docked in Ocean City last summer was such a success, the town had planned to bring another replica of a Spanish w...
WAMU 88.5
In Maryland, the state's lottery and gaming commission is pushing forward with a new law that would lump boardwalk arcades in Ocean City into the same category as state casinos. Walking into Marty's Playland on the Ocean City Boardwalk is kind of like walking back into your childhood. There are dozens of skee ball lanes, the old fortune-teller machine, the claw prize booths, a...
WAMU 88.5
Virginia State Police have identified the two people killed in yesterday's tornado on Viriginia's Eastern Shore. A couple from New Jersey was killed after the tornado caused a tree to fall on their tent at a popular campground, near Cape Charles, Virginia. State Police spokesperson Corinne Geller identifies the victims as Lord Balatbat and Lolabeth Ortega of Jersey City, N...
WAMU 88.5
On Virginia's Eastern Shore, two people are dead after a confirmed tornado touched down this morning. As Coastal Reporter Bryan Russo explains, 36 people were injured at a crowded campground. More than 1,300 people were camping at the Cherrystone campground near Cape Charles when the the tornado struck shortly before 9 a.m. "Well it was total devastation," says Dav...
WAMU 88.5
Plans for two huge chicken farms in the southern portion of Delaware are making even the staunchest supporters of the poultry industry question whether or not it’s a good idea for the region. The Delaware Right to Farm law puts no restriction on the number of chicken houses that can be built on land zoned for agriculture. Basically, it was put in place to help family farme...
WAMU 88.5
Charles Albert Tindley is widely considered to be one of the founding fathers of American Gospel Music. Some historians are concerned the legacy of one of the region’s most accomplished native sons could be fading. You may not have every heard of Rev. Charles Albert Tindley before, but you have likely heard his work — Elvis Presley one of Tindley’s most famous hymns: ...
WAMU 88.5
Despite an effort by Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.) to block it, a law decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of marijuana in D.C. will go into effect this wee...