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
At United Work and Travel's Ocean City office, program director Anne Marie Conestabile is giving orientation to a roomful of students from Eastern Europe and the Dominican Republic. "You are our guests, you are invited by the government of the United States to have a wonderful cultural experience here in Ocean City, Md.," she says. But Conestabile says hundreds of kid...
WAMU 88.5
Ocean City was largely spared during last October's Superstorm Sandy, but perhaps the most striking image in the aftermath was the 200 plus feet of the century-old fishing p...
WAMU 88.5
Charles R. Smith and Tonya Bundick have been charged with setting more than 77 arson fires in Accomack County on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. A psychological evaluation ordered by the court, found that while the two are severely depressed, they are not clinically insane and are therefore mentally stable enough to stand before a judge and jury. The couple admitte...
WAMU 88.5
In a federal sting operation that spanned the East Coast, authorities said they stopped a massive cigarette smuggling ring that might have used profits to fund terrorist groups. Homeland Security agents on Wednesday stormed at least two Ocean City, Md., properties owned by Samir and Basel Ramadan, taking items from their homes and seizing their vehicles. Prosecutors sa...
WAMU 88.5
The first instrument singer-songwriter Angela Sheik ever played was her grandmother's piano. She wanted to learn how to play the Star Wars theme song, she says. But she's since branched into more unusual instruments — namely, a theremin and a loop pedal, which she uses to create lush, unique sounds. Sheik recently joined Metro Connection reporter Bryan Russo in the studio to talk ab...
WAMU 88.5
Steve Elkins and his partner Murray have been fighting for equality for the LGBT community in their home of Rehoboth Beach and throughout the state of Delaware for more than two decades. So last week, as he watched Gov. Jack Markell sign the bill making Delaware the 11th state in the country to allow same sex couples to marry, he says he felt completely numb. "It was a...
WAMU 88.5
It's an age-old problem: bullying. Ask most anyone, and he or she will remember being taunted by a bully on the playground or in a school bus. Over the years, our definitions of bullying have evolved, and the issue has gotten more attention as new forms of harassment, such as cyber bullying, have entered the lexicon. But that doesn't mean bullies are always called out for thei...
WAMU 88.5
Exactly six months since Superstorm Sandy ravaged the Delaware coastline, state officials announced they have received roughly $30 million in federal funding to replenish beaches this summer, just in time for the next hurricane season. The announcement is being received as mostly fantastic news for Delaware beach towns. It's good news that Delaware beaches, from Re...
WAMU 88.5
When Berlin, Md. native Chris Maxa heard the Ocean City Boardwalk was going to be completely torn up and rebuilt a few years back, he thought, what are they going to do with all that wood? Hence, the creation of his new artistic venture Boardwalked. "I transfer photographs and make different games out of the r...
WAMU 88.5
Sequestration has forced military jet teams like the U.S. Navy Blue Angels to cancel their appearances at air shows across the country. Organizers for the Ocean City Air Show, however, found a way to get a military jet in the lineup. When you lose one of the most dynamic and...
WAMU 88.5
Tourists travelling to Ocean City, Md., this summer may be paying a little more out of pocket when it comes to parking. A proposal on the table may not sit well with both tourists and locals alike. The Mayor and City Council have proposed a 50 cent rate increase to $3 an hour for parking at the inlet. Another proposal would place parking meters on three streets that have histo...
WAMU 88.5
Usually, when 70 acres of anything is on fire, alarms are sounded and cavalries are called, but back down a long dirt road called Bear Swamp, deep inside the Nassawango Creek Preserve — the state's largest privately owned natural area, made up of more than 10,000 acres of upland forest and bald cypress swamp — dozens of ecologists dressed in hardhats and yellow jumpsuits are as ca...
WAMU 88.5
A well-known rapper has been acquitted of drug charges after he was pulled over while travelling to a gig on the Eastern Shore. Rapper 2 Chainz only needed one alibi to be acquitted of drug paraphernalia and marijuana possession in Talbot County. He said the pot wasn't his. A district court judge found the Atlanta based rapper, whose real name is Tauheed Epps, not guil...
WAMU 88.5
Final planks of the brand new $6 million boardwalk in Ocean City have been nailed into place with more than a month to spare before the summer season. It took three years, and more than a 116,000 pieces of wood, but the full makeover of the city's iconic 2-mile wooden walkway is finally complete. "We worked through the rainstorms, the snowstorms, we have not stopped," ...
WAMU 88.5
It's a well-known fact that the demoflush formula Ocean City officials use to gauge how many people are coming to town in the summer is flawed. Experts say trying to monitor population with wastewater flow and toilet flushes fails to capture all the people who are packed onto the island at a given time. As a result, Ocean City's tourism commission is hoping to find...
WAMU 88.5
Swarms of cicadas are expected to arrive sometime in the next few weeks for the first time in 17 years. When the ground temperature reaches 64 degrees, billions of the red-eyed, prehistoric looking dark-winged cicadas will emerge from the ground and invade the east coast from North Carolina to New York. But some parts of the east will be spared — those areas that...
WAMU 88.5
On Virginia's Eastern Shore, the mastermind of what police are calling the region's largest crime spree in a generation, has confessed to setting more than 50 of the 77 arson fires that have plagued Accomack County since November. Charles R. Smith III, 38, was denied bond by a district court judge despite pleas from his attorney that the 52 fires Smith confessed to setting in ...
WAMU 88.5
Scientists at the NASA flight facility at Wallops Island are set to launch the largest rocket in its 70-year history. The Antares Rocket stands 133 feet tall and 13 feet in diameter, and scientists say, because of the sheer size of it, it will be visible for a minute or more in the skies as it churns its way towards the international space station. Orbital Sciences Corporati...
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The dune system that protects Ocean City's 10 miles of beachfront real estate is in need of emergency repairs after taking the brunt of Superstorm Sandy's wrath last November. But Ocean City officials say the work will likely not begin until this fall, which could...
WAMU 88.5
Rev. Carl Perez remembers well the moment he got the phone call telling him his church was on fire. "I thought well, it must be something small or maybe just a mistake," he says. "By the time I got to the road I could see smoke, and I thought OK, just smoke damage. We can handle that." But the damage to the 135-year-old Adams United Methodist Church in Whitesville, Va....