Amani Abraham is the morning web editor and also tracks morning drive traffic for 1590 WAKR, 97.5 WONE and 94.9 WQMX during weekday mornings and is a reporter/anchor. She's no stranger to AkronNewsNow.com, having worked as an intern with Rubber City Radio Group as a producer for the Daily Vodcast and other video projects.. Amani is a 2011 graduate with a Communications degree from the University of Akron, where she excelled in her work on the student radio station WZIP-FM and Z-TV, the University's television program. You can reach Amani through the newsroom 330-864-6397 or by email email@example.com
The holiday season continues as today marks the 2nd day of Kwanzaa, a week long celebration honoring the heritage of African Americans.
A local celebration will happen on New Year's Eve at Weathervane Playhouse as they team up with the Akron African-American Cultural Association and the Akron-Canton Association of Black Social Workers to offer a free event to the community.
"In the Akron, Summit County area, they've had for a number of years Kwanzaa celebrations,' said Jennifer Kay Jeter, Community Engagement Coordinator with Weather Playhouse. "I remember them back, at least, a couple decades."
Jeter says this will be the second year a Kwanzaa celebration was featured at the Weathervane Playhouse.
"Something that's really special about the one that we're doing at Weathervane Playhouse is that we chose 'Kuumba' which stands for creativity," said Jeter.
A principle and tradition is featured on each day of the week long celebration of Kwanzaa including unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility , cooperative economics, purpose, creativity and faith.
The community event "A night to celebrate Kuumba 'Creativity'" will be featured Weathervane Playhouse on Dec. 31 at 6 p.m.
Norton fire crews battled a structure fire at Barberton Brookside Country Club last night.
Crews arrived on scene and found a large storage and maintenance building fully engulfed in flames shortly after 8:30 p.m. Fire officials said the building is a total loss. No injuries were reported.
Multiple fire departments were called in to help including crews from Barberton, Copley, Wadsworth, Sharon Township, Bath and New Franklin.
Akron police respond to thousands of security alarms every year, but soon, the department will stop responding to the alarms until someone confirms that help is needed.
Akron police chief James Nice said this type of policy change is happening across the country.
"The alarms in Akron are similar to the alarms in every other city, and that is more than 99 percent are false," said Nice. "There's no bang for the the buck. There's no return on investment for billing to alarm calls."
The security alarms will no longer be immediately dispatched to officers, but it will still appear on the computer system in each police cruiser and, if possible, an officer will respond when needed.
Akron police will continue to respond to panic and hold-up alarms. Officers will respond to a security alarm when someone verifies that help is needed.
"I'm always worried about the safety of our residents in Akron. It's actually the reason that I'm doing this, so that the resources can be used more towards actually doing something that makes the public safer."
The policy change is expected to be put in place sometime next year.
New Franklin firefighters battled a house fire Christmas morning.
Fire officials arrived at the house in the 6100 block of Renninger Road and found a a fire involving an attached two-car garage which extended into the attic.
Fire investigators determined that the fire was caused by hot materials that were discarded into a trash can next to the house.
The fire was contained to the garage, but the house sustained light smoke damage. Damage to the structure and contents is estimated to be $10,000.
Firefighters from the Village of Clinton assisted the New Franklin Fire Department.
A fireplace is to blame for a house fire in New Franklin Tuesday.
New Franklin firefighters were called to the home in the 1400 block of Linger Drive shortly before 5:30 p.m.
A neighbor alerted residents inside the home of the fire and all five people were able to escape. No injuries were reported.
Crews arrived within six minutes to find heavy fire involving the exterior wall and the attic of the structure.
The blaze caused around $100,000 of damage to the home including water and smoke damage to the structure.
Fire investigators determined the fire was caused by heat from a fireplace inside the house.
Firefighters from Clinton, Coventry Township, Canal Fulton, Lawrence Township and Jackson Township helped battle the blaze.
New Franklin fire officials are reminding residents to clean and inspect their chimneys annually.
You can officially get a sneak peek of the movie "Draft Day", starring Kevin Costner in the role as General Manager for the Cleveland Browns. The movie is centered around the the day of the NFL Draft as GM Sonny Weaver (Kevin Costner) deals with sacrifice and difficult decisions to save a team.
The movie also stars Denis Leary, Jennifer Garner, Frank Langella and Ellen Burstyn.
Draft Day is expected to open in theaters on April 11, 2014.
On the web: www.facebook.com/DraftDayMovie
Alan "Tank" Arrington, an assistant football coach at the University of Akron, was killed in a car accident Monday in Mississippi.
The University of Akron posted the news on their website Monday. Arrington was in his second season working with head coach Terry Bowden. He also worked with the offensive line.
"I can't put into words how tragic this is," Bowden said in a release. "We have lost someone who was truly special and had dedicated his life to guiding young men. Tank was a very good friend and a great person. My thoughts are with his family and those who had the chance to know him and play for him. In all my years of coaching I have never known someone who loved and cared for his players more than Tank. I have lost a best friend and I'm heartbroken."
The Mississippi native is survived by his wife, the former Gail Perkins.
"The Zips family has suffered a great loss," UA Director of Athletics Tom Wistrcill said. "Tank was a wonderful representative of the University and our team, and our thoughts are with his family and friends in this difficult time. We will do all that we can to help support them, our student-athletes and staff."
Funeral arrangements are not yet available.
On the web: www.gozips.com
Residents in Medina County left with damage after heavy storms and strong winds over the weekend may be eligible for a claim of reduction in property taxes.
County Auditor Mike Kovack is reminding residents that the benefit may even apply to basement flooding and other problems that are not covered by insurance .
Property owners must file a "Destruction of Property" form with the auditor to receive the benefit. The form is available online at www.medinacountyauditor.org under "Forms". The office will also mail the form out to you if necessary.
For property damaged in the recent storm, owners can have up to 25% of the value reduced off their property tax bill. The form needs to be filed no later than January 31st of 2014, but Auditor Kovack encourages all affected owners to fill it out as soon as possible. "With the severity of these storms, owners who sustained structural damage deserve the assistance that this law provides. "
While you're out today traveling or shopping for some last minute holiday gifts, you'll notice gas prices are up about 19 cent from last week.
GasBuddy.com reports prices in Akron stand at around $3.26 per gallon, which is a few pennies above the national average.
The average price of gas is four cents higher than the same time last year.
(GasBuddy.com News Release) Average retail gasoline prices in Akron have risen 18.9 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.26/g yesterday, according to GasBuddy's daily survey of 372 gas outlets in Akron. This compares with the national average that has increased 2.2 cents per gallon in the last week to $3.23/g, according to gasoline price website GasBuddy.com.
Including the change in gas prices in Akron during the past week, prices yesterday were 4.0 cents per gallon higher than the same day one year ago and are 0.9 cents per gallon higher than a month ago. The national average has decreased 2.4 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 0.9 cents per gallon lower than this day one year ago.
"Motorists hitting the road for Christmas travel are cringing as gasoline prices have picked up with the best now behind us," said GasBuddy.com Senior Petroleum Analyst Patrick DeHaan. "While prices will advance, I don't expect it to last too long- January and February generally also feature relatively low gasoline prices. And while motorists aren't looking forward to the higher prices, they may take some solace in our expectation that gasoline prices in 2014 should average lower than they will after 2013 is complete. Make no mistake- gas prices will see volatility, and there will be times when motorists will experience "motion sickness" at the pump, but that shouldn't discount that Americans will be able to spend less on a yearly basis in 2014 than they did this year," DeHaan said.
Akron Children's Hospital has reached an agreement with Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield which will allow customers to access services and providers effective at the start of the new year.
If the hospital and health care provider did not reach a new agreement by Jan. 1, Children's Hospital doctors could have become "out-of-network" for those with Anthem insurance. That would have likely raised costs or copays.
(Akron Children's Hospital - News Release) Akron Children's Hospital and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield have reached an agreement to renew their long-standing relationship, giving Anthem members continuing access to the hospital and its specialist physicians.
Akron Children's has more than 700,000 patient visits each year and performs more pediatric surgeries than any other hospital in northeast Ohio. As an integrated pediatric healthcare delivery system, Children's has two hospital campuses and more than 80 primary and specialty care locations throughout northern Ohio.
"We are pleased that we were able to reach an agreement with Anthem so we could remain accessible to all of the Anthem-enrolled patient families who rely on our services and providers," said Karen Richter, vice president of Managed Care at Akron Children's Hospital. "We're happy our patient families will still be able to access their trusted physicians and have the peace of mind the continuity of care will provide."
As the largest pediatric health care system in northeast Ohio, Akron Children's cares for half a million patients each year, including children, teens and adults from all 50 states and around the world. In addition to our main campus in downtown Akron, the Children's system also includes the Beeghly campus in Boardman as well as more than 80 locations throughout our service area.\Anthem serves 3.3 million members in Ohio with health benefits plans for individuals and employers. The agreement includes all Anthem commercial health plans effective Jan. 1, 2014.
"Anthem and Akron Children's have had a long-term professional relationship, providing our members with ongoing access to the excellent health care services provided by the hospital and its physicians," said Jim Pugliese, regional vice president of Provider Engagement & Contracting for Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Ohio. "This agreement renews our continuing commitment."