Wilson Sayre

Reporter

Wilson Sayre was born and bred in Raleigh, N.C., home of the only real barbecue in the country (we're talking East here). She graduated from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where she studied Philosophy.

Sayre took a year off school to live in a Zen monastery in Japan and quickly realized that a life of public radio would be a bit more forgiving. Upon returning to the States, she helped launch a news program at UNC’s college-radio station, WXYC. Through error and error, she taught herself how to make radio stories.

She worked with NPR member station WUNC in Chapel Hill, interning for The Story with Dick Gordon. Then she went on to help to run WUNC's Youth Radio Institute, teaching at-risk teenagers how to make radio.

Sayre likes to keep chickens, pickle okra and make sound collages.

Sayre initially came down to WLRN in 2013 for a reporting fellowship. After that, she decided she couldn't leave. She's continued her a mission to get more Miamians to wear overalls and say y'all.

Ways to Connect

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Outside the Shops at Sunset Place, roughly 20 people gathered Monday night. They held candles – real and battery-powered – and quietly sang.

The song was not in the spirit of holiday celebration, but of labor struggle: “We Shall Overcome.”

In October, new owners acquired Sunset Place and changed the company hired for cleaning services. The new company chose not to hire the existing workers at the outdoor mall, effectively terminating them.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

The new Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science in Miami is scheduled to open to the public in the summer of 2016. The new building is four times the size of the old location next to Vizcaya and will include a new planetarium, a 500,000-gallon aquarium tank and beautiful views of the city. Exhibit build-out is expected to start in early 2016, but we wanted to take a tour now to see what people can expect when it opens.

Take a listen to the walking tour.

Art Miami

Among the elaborate parties and gallery exhibits that come to South Florida every year for Miami Art Week, last year an usual heist became it’s own cause célèbre.

Art crimes make up a $6 billion industry worldwide and, in general, if stolen art doesn’t turn up within the first few months, it could be be a long time before it does. 

THE THEFT

Art Miami 2014 was David Smith’s fifth time at the art fair with his Amsterdam-based Gallery, Leslie Smith. 

Jose Iglesias / Miami Herald

A woman in a beautiful red sari sits on a small stool; She holds a basket full of bright orange persimmons and tries to sell her wares. In a matter of seconds, though, water has risen to her calves, then her hips and then above her head.

Her clothes swirl around her as she tries to grab the floating fruit.

All of this happens in an elevator-sized tank for a performance art piece called Holoscenes  at the Wolfson Campus of Miami Dade College.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Workers at the Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood and Miami international airports joined with others across the country to fight for better working conditions Thursday. Workers at JFK and LaGuardia airports in New York, Boston Logan, Chicago O'Hare and others joined in on the strike.

Most were pushing for higher wages, but the workers in South Florida wanted to send a message that the fight continues even after getting better pay.

Vaguely Artistic / Flickr/Creative Commons

Just two weeks after the last one, Tuesday is another election day in Miami-Dade County.

Two commission seats will be decided, one in Miami Beach the other in Miami, but you might not actually call the Miami race an election this time around.

Many cities in Miami-Dade County use a “majority” voting system,  which means that in order to win an election, you have to get 50 percent of the vote - the majority of the voters. But when elections, like those that produced  runoffs, have five or nine candidates, getting that majority can be difficult.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Immigrant workers are the focus of a new education initiative involving the country’s largest retailer. A project called New American Workforce launched Friday in Miami and will offer English-language instruction focusing on work-specific language skills.

The need is there: Roughly 1.5 million retail workers across the country have limited English-language proficiency.

Miami Dade College will design the curriculum that will be piloted in Miami, Houston and New York. 

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

  In a small classroom in Little Haiti a dozen people practice answering questions with their instructor. Questions like “how many constitutional amendments are there,” and “who’s your representative in the U.S. House.”  

These are possible questions on a test not everyone born in the United States could pass: the citizenship test.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

For the past two years, young men who’ve had run-ins with the law have served food out of the Vibe 305 food truck.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

The end is in sight for the construction at the new science museum in downtown Miami.

The Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science is set to open in the summer of 2016 after closing the doors  this summer at its old location next to Vizcaya. 

Doug Smith / Florida Department of Corrections

Update 10/29/2015 11:55 p.m. -- Jerry Correll was pronounced dead at 7:36 p.m. Thursday night, ten minutes after the execution procedure began. He had no final words, but prison officials say his last meal consisted of a cheeseburger with ketchup, fried, and a Coke.

The U.S. Supreme Court handed down an official denial of Correll's petition to stay the execution at 6:40 p.m. - after the execution was scheduled to begin, which delayed the proceedings.

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Creative Commons via Flickr / danielvalle5 (https://flic.kr/p/a17DDB)

The shooting of Corey Jones in Palm Beach Gardens is the  most recent in a growing number of deaths at the hands of police officers in South Florida and throughout the United States. One of the many conversations prompted by these deaths is how officers systemically interact with and treat men and women of color in the community.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Wynwood is known for its world-renowned street art, but this month it has also been the temporary home of influential museum art in the form of etchings from Pablo Picasso in a show called La Tauromaquia.

Hanging inside the Bakehouse Art Complex, the 26 pieces look like black and white watercolor paintings—they’re actually etchings printed on paper—and depict a scene from a bullfight.

Windows Lost To Wilma

Oct 26, 2015
Charles Trainor Jr. / Miami Herald

Before Hurricane Wilma hit Miami 10 years ago,  the tall buildings in Brickell had never had to contend with anything like the more than 100 mph winds the storm brought.

And while the buildings survived, their windows did not fare as well. Broken glass became one of lasting symbols of Wilma’s destruction.

The morning after Wilma made landfall, Santi Gabino left his apartment near Dadeland to go to work at the Four Seasons Hotel in Brickell. On the way in, he thought about picking up a cup of coffee and a donut.

Doug Smith / Florida Department of Corrections

Florida was in the spotlight again for its death penalty procedure this week when the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments about the way the Sunshine State hands down death sentences.

In Florida, Alabama and Delaware, juries can recommend the death penalty if more than half the jurors agree; In other states, either the jury decision has to be  unanimous or  a jury isn't used at all in sentencing.

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