Middletown

Ambriehl Crutchfield / WVXU

Middletown's school year may be ending, but families have a new food source to look forward to. Middie Meal Machine food truck will offer three meal options and can serve up to 250-300 meals at a time.

middletown ohio
Al Behrman / AP

Yes, it's true: All the visits to Middletown by Oscar-winning director Ron Howard were to scope out locations for his Hillbilly Elegy movie based on J.D. Vance's memoir of growing up among working-class "hillbillies" in the Butler County steel town.

But only a fraction of the film will be shot in Ohio, unless things change, says Ami Vitori, a Middletown City Council member and a Middletown Visitors Bureau board member.

Courtesy Internet Movie Database

Actor Gabriel Basso (The Whole Truth) will star in Hillbilly Elegy as "J.D. Wade," the fictionalized name for J.D. Vance, who wrote the book of the same title about growing up in Middletown, Deadline reports.

Hillbilly Elegy "is a potential star making role for the young actor," Deadline says.

amy adams
Chris Pizzello / Invision/AP

Update 9 p.m. Thursday April 11: Glenn Close will follow up her Oscar-nominated performance in The Wife by playing J.D. Vance's grandmother in Hillbilly Elegy.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Energy is flowing at Middletown City Schools. Students in new and renovated schools are making use of technology in ways they haven't before.

The band Cincinnati Transit Authority, a local Chicago tribute band, hits the stage of Middletown's Sorg Opera House on Saturday, October 20. 

Middletown's Sorg Opera House will celebrate local icon Rosemary Clooney's 90th birthday with a tribute concert featuring singer Nancy James with the RL Big Band. 

Courtesy Heather Gibson

Oscar-winning director Ron Howard visited Middletown Tuesday while preparing to make a film  adaptation of Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis, the best-selling book by Middletown native J.D. Vance.

Courtesy of Toronto International Film Festival

Donnybrook, the epic bare-knuckle fight film shot in Cincinnati last October, premieres Friday Sept. 7 at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Frank Grillo, who starred in Reprisal with Bruce Willis here last summer, returned to start shooting Donnybrook on Oct. 23, 2017 with director Tim Sutton (Dark Night, Memphis, Pavilion).

Courtesy Hope House Mission

Middletown's Hope House Mission is finally moving forward with a new shelter. The organization broke ground Wednesday on the $11.2 million facility.

A bluegrass musician with a familial tie to Middletown will bring his band to the stage of the Sorg Opera House on Saturday, June 23. 

He was the voice and driving force behind rock supergroup Steppenwolf

WNKN-FM

Middletown's FM 105.9 – the "Country Rebel" when bought by Northern Kentucky University in 2011 – returns to its country roots today as "Southwest Ohio's Classic Country Giant."

Jeff Ziesmann's Grant County Broadcasters, which operates Classic Country WNKR-FM (106.7) in Northern Kentucky, will duplicate the classic country music on the powerful Middletown station that reaches from north of Dayton International Airport to south of CVG. The station will start broadcasting sometime Monday, Oct. 2.

WVXU-FM archives

Middletown's historic Sorg Opera House reopens with a concert Sunday, two weeks before Cincinnati's Music Hall's grand re-opening.

Middletown's Sorg Opera House dates back to 1891 and has a long history of hosting music, theatre, opera and movies, but fell into disrepair in recent times. 

John Kiesewetter

Growing up in Middletown, I've known about the Robert E. Lee memorial in nearby Franklin for most of my life.

I've always found it curious that there would be a memorial to Lee, who led the Confederate Army into battle to destroy the United States of America, in the North.

And that the Robert E. Lee memorial also was there "to mark the route of the Dixie Highway."

John Kiesewetter

Update 8/17/17 at 8:40 p.m.:  Northern Kentucky University issued a press release Thursday evening stating WNKU's programming on 89.7 FM will end Friday morning at 8:59 a.m.

Original post: It's the beginning of the end.

WNKU-FM stops broadcasting on its original frequency (FM 89.7) at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 19 – although the station's beloved adult album alternative (Triple-A) format will continue to be heard throughout most of Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati on Middletown's powerful WNKN-FM (105.9) and streamed on line.

The Middletown Arts Center offers a wide variety of classes, exhibitions and even a program that gets art out into the community. 

Provided by Stephen L. Hightower

Stephen L. Hightower isn't sure how CNBC will portray his "mud, sweat and tears" success story on "Blue Collar Millionaires" at 10 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 25.

"I haven't seen it. I'll see it when everyone else does," says Hightower, president and CEO of Hightowers  Petroleum and HP Energy. "I don't know what they're going to show."

Carmon DeLeone will conduct the final season of the Middletown Symphony Orchestra, its 75th and his 35th on the podium, beginning with a November 12 concert featuring the music of Gershwin’s “Porgy and Bess.”

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